Friends & Rivals | Brenda Niall #AWWbiography

'All over the country, brooding on squatters' verandahs, or mooning in selectors' huts,' so A. G. Stephens wrote in the Bulletin in 1901, 'there are scattered here and there hundreds of lively, dreamy Australian girls whose queer uncomprehended ambitions are the despair of the household. They yearn, they aspire for they know not what...' I … Continue reading Friends & Rivals | Brenda Niall #AWWbiography

Myself When Young | Henry Handel Richardson #AWWautobiography

It has never been my way to say much about my private life. Autobiographies are by their nature completely different beasts to biographies. In a biography, the researcher is keen to unearth the 'real' person, to dig deep into archives, letters, journals and other people's memories. Mostly this is done respectfully to honour the subject's … Continue reading Myself When Young | Henry Handel Richardson #AWWautobiography

Eve Langley and The Pea Pickers | Helen Vines #AWWbiography

Eve Langley (1904 -1974) is an enigmatic figure in Australian literary history. One of the (many) reasons why Eve Langley is considered enigmatic is her writing. There was a LOT of it, but was it fiction or was it autobiographical? And how is it possible to tell the difference when the author deliberately leads you … Continue reading Eve Langley and The Pea Pickers | Helen Vines #AWWbiography

Cold Enough For Snow | Jessica Au #AWWnovella

When we left the hotel it was raining, a light, fine rain, as can sometimes happen in Tokyo in October. Cold Enough for Snow by Melbourne based author, Jessica Au, was the inaugural winner of The Novel Prize, a new biennial award established by Giramondo (Australia), Fitzcarraldo Editions (UK) and New Directions (USA). The novella will … Continue reading Cold Enough For Snow | Jessica Au #AWWnovella

The Countess From Kirribilli | Joyce Morgan #AWWbiography

April 1939: The wisteria was heavy with blossoms; the roses scrambled around the windows of the old French farmhouse. Joyce Morgan's biography of Elizabeth von Armin, The Countess From Kirribilli, is an utter delight from start to finish. I could just leave that thought there and be done with this post. But, of course, I … Continue reading The Countess From Kirribilli | Joyce Morgan #AWWbiography

Scary Monsters | Michelle de Kretser #AWWfiction

Three scary monsters - racism, misogyny and ageism - roam through this mesmerising novel. Its reversible format enacts the disorientation that migrants experience when changing countries changes the story of their lives. With this suspenseful, funny and profound book, Michelle de Kretser has made something thrilling and new.Which comes first, the future or the past?Back … Continue reading Scary Monsters | Michelle de Kretser #AWWfiction

Secrets of Women’s Healthy Ageing | Cassandra Szoeke #AWWnonfiction

The women at the heart of this story come from all walks of life. In 1990 a study of 2000 Australian women, aged between 45 to 55, was undertaken to provide a 'wide-frame snapshot of women's health in this phase of life (menopausal transition)'. It was designed to last for five years. One of the … Continue reading Secrets of Women’s Healthy Ageing | Cassandra Szoeke #AWWnonfiction

The Clear Voice Suddenly Singing | Amanda Lohrey #AWWessay

I am standing next to Bridie and she is singing too loudly. Amanda Lohrey recently won her first Miles Franklin Award for her novel, The Labyrinth. Ever since the announcement, her short story essay in Secrets (1997) has been on my mind. Last weekend, I sat down to reread it. Secrets came into my possession … Continue reading The Clear Voice Suddenly Singing | Amanda Lohrey #AWWessay

Dropbear | Evelyn Araluen #AWWpoetry

According to wikipedia a drop bear is a fictional creature, an urban myth, designed by Australians to scare tourists. It has even been given a fictional scientific name - Thylarctos plummetus. According to folklore it looks like "a predatory, carnivorous version of the koala" and lives in gumtrees, dropping onto the heads of unsuspecting bushwalkers. … Continue reading Dropbear | Evelyn Araluen #AWWpoetry

Yuiquimbiang | Louise Crisp #PoetryMonth

In her Preface, Louise Crisp describes her collection of poetry, Yuiquimbiang as an 'ecopoetic form that integrates political essay and environmental poetics: a project that evolved out of my double life as a poet and environmental activist'. The regions she writes about the East Gippsland and the Monaro. Crisp's poems and texts evolve from her … Continue reading Yuiquimbiang | Louise Crisp #PoetryMonth