It has been a topsy-turvy sort of summer for me, but I finally caught up with my writing friends at Eastwood/Hills Fellowship of Australian writers and was able to take delivery of my copy of Assorted Dreams. The members who took on the job of editing and publishing the anthology have done a fine job of putting the book together, with a nice balance of poems and short stories.
So many dedicated writers have participated in the Eastwood/Hills meetings, workshops and competitions since the beginning of the group. This anthology publishes work by twenty-two of the current members. It demonstrates what writers can achieve, when we meet together, learn from each other, and provide a supportive environment for creativity to flourish.
Twenty-seven short stories from renowned Australian fiction writer and poet Julie Thorndyke will take you on tantalising journeys in the company of artists and musicians, mothers and daughters, writers and lovers, as they make brave, desperate and audacious life choices.
Survival, desire, disaster; misadventure, murder and magic combine in this unique collection of tales set in locations including old rural Australia, present day cities and the distant mystical past.
Earthquake, flood, fire; stolen babies and lost children; homelessness and betrayal; ghosts, mystics and dreams— each story offers a chance to step into the shoes of closely imagined characters as they act out their unique answers to the question: “What if?”
Divertimento offers a chance to step briefly into the shoes of a protagonist and discover how it feels to steal, love, and murder . . . and live to tell the tale.
“skilled wordplay and gorgeous imagery”
“enthralling right from the beginning”
“a delightful read”
SOCIETY OF WOMEN WRITERS NSW BOOK AWARDS SHORTLISTED AUTHOR
Nothing in this book is true—please believe me when I tell you that these stories are complete fabrications. Lies. Fantasies plucked from thin air, dreams recorded after deep sleep, tales spun from nothing. This is what a fiction writer does.
The stories in Divertimento were learning pieces written over a decade or so. University and writing group assignments, competition entries, and stories written just because.
Don’t look for people you know in the pages of this book—they won’t be there. What you may find is a familiar turn of phrase stolen from a shared conversation; a setting described in a way that makes you feel you have been in that place; a situation that you have heard of in gossip or the nightly news. There any similarity ends.
It is the craft of a writer to steal details from life and blend them into a story of sufficient veracity that readers will swallow the tale, plausible or not, without needing to spit out indigestible gristle or bone.
I invite you to read my words and see if I have managed to weave my characters, settings and situations into stories that pass the test. If I have succeeded, all to the good—if not, that’s okay, all writers are on a learning curve and there are always more tricks to discover, more characters to invent, and more places to visit.
Thanks for coming along with me on the journey.
Ginninderra Press, publication date – 24 April 2021 ISBN – 9781761090905 (ebook 9781761090912) RRP – $30.00