background preloader

Short stories by NZ/Australian writers

Facebook Twitter

Fiction: When She Came Walking, by Tim Jones. 24 September 2001 The first time she walked down our street, pots jumped off stoves, coal leapt from scuttles, wood went rat-a-tat-tatting down hallways. In our yard, a broom and spade got up and lurched around like drunks, trying to decide which way she'd gone. I caught my first glimpse of her from the window, and that was enough for me. "I'll be back soon," I told Mother, and slipped out the door before the questions could start.

It was all I could do to stop the door coming with me, and the street looked like a parade had passed through: everything from Mrs. I left Mr. I ran after the railing and caught it with one hand as it was turning into Fenton Avenue -- and Fenton Avenue was so full of writhing inanimate objects I was happy the railing was there to delay me. "Thanks, Pat, you're a pal. I wanted to remind her I wasn't eight any more, but there was no changing some people.

She shook her head. "None at all," I told her. By the time we had wrestled the railing back to Mrs. "You! Oh. Tim Jones. Turbine Turbine is an online literary journal published annually since 2001 by the International Institute of Modern Letters. It presents new work by our creative writing students alongside poetry and fiction by emerging and established writers.

You can browse previous issues by clicking on the Turbine banners below. If you are interested in contributing to the next issue, visit our Submission Guidelines page for more details. Issues Turbine 2013 Published 19 February 2014 Turbine 2012 Published 10 December 2012 Turbine 2011 Published 14 December 2011 Turbine 2010 Published 16 December 2010 Turbine 2009 Published 17 December 2009 Turbine 2008 Published 10 December 2008 Turbine 2007 Published 12 December 2007 Turbine 2006 Published 15 December 2006 Turbine 2005 Published 15 December 2005 Turbine 2004 Published 17 December 2004 Turbine 2003 Published 18 December 2003 Turbine 2002 Published 18 October 2002 Turbine 2001. Margaret Drabble reads 'The Doll's House' by Katherine Mansfield | Books. Drabble on Mansfield I first read "The Doll's House" in one of those big children's annuals that we were given every Christmas, where this classic story took its place among puzzles, Christmas games and jolly messages from Enid Blyton.

I can remember the illustrations now, and how fascinated I was by the strange name of Kezia. I found it heartbreaking then and I still do. Every child dreads being the playground victim, the one whose family is an embarrassment or a source of shame, and this story encapsulates that sense of exclusion. In true Mansfield style, it is at once pathetic (in the true sense) and slightly sadistic. When one is older one can appreciate the economy of the narration, the symbolism of the doll's house, the bloody horror of the leaking jam sandwiches, the subtle relationship of the two sisters and the snobbery of the adults, but it is the unbearable poignancy of that last line, "I seen the little lamp", that continues to haunt.

Katherine Mansfield : The Fly. "THE FLY" by Katherine Mansfield (1888-1923). Typed by myself referring to the Oxford World's Classics' "Katherine Mansfield, Selected Stories" and "Modern British Women Writers" published by Seibido (Tokyo). A Japanese translation was done by myself. by Katherine Mansfield 'Y'are very snug in here,' piped old Mr Woodifield, and he peered out of the great, green leather armchair by his friend the boss's desk as a baby peers out of its pram. Wistfully, admiringly, the old voice added, 'It's snug in here--upon my word! ' 'Yes, it's comfortable enough,' agreed the boss, and he nipped the Financial Times with a paper-knife. 'I've had it done up lately,' he explained, as he had explained for the past--how many? But he did not draw old Woodifield's attention to the photograph over the table of a grave-looking boy in uniform standing in one of those spectral photographers' parks with photographers' storm-clouds behind him.

Poor old chap, he's on his last pins, thought the boss. 'No, no! ' It was. "The Garden Party" by Katherine Mansfield. Chimamanda Adichie on "The Garden Party" by Katherine Mansfield Katherine Mansfield's "The Garden Party" is beautifully written, with a touch that one might best describe as delicate. Yet it is pitiless and clear-eyed in its engagement with class, its questioning of the willful blindness and privileges of the upper middle-classes. It is my idea of the perfect story: realistic and subtle but never hiding behind the idea of art for art's sake. It actually has something to say. Photo by Beowulf Sheehan THE GARDEN PARTY by Katherine Mansfield And after all the weather was ideal.

Breakfast was not yet over before the men came to put up the marquee. "Where do you want the marquee put, mother? " "My dear child, it's no use asking me. But Meg could not possibly go and supervise the men. "You'll have to go, Laura; you're the artistic one. " Away Laura flew, still holding her piece of bread-and-butter. Four men in their shirt-sleeves stood grouped together on the garden path.

Against the karakas. Mrs. The Turning. The Turning photo by David Frankel by Kath Mckay Tim Winton is an author who gets down in the dust of humanity. He writes about car crashes and disfigurements and scrubbing floors and drownings and hangings and falling out with your in-laws, and drinking too much and hitching up with unsuitable people. He’s also about the aching beauty of the sea and the land that swells people’s souls. In an interview with Richard Rossiter, Winton said: “I’m trying to render the commonplace worthy of attention […] I write about working class people, who generally aren’t articulate, and are often alienated and powerless. Winton, born in 1960, studied Creative Writing at what is now Curtin University, and was mentored by Elizabeth Jolley.

In a 2008 Guardian interview, he said Australian generations before him ‘kowtowed’ to the dominant European culture. He is a deceptively simple writer, often using the Australian vernacular to comic effect. When the van catches fire, the trio bail out: ‘What’s it like? The water was dark and it went forever down... The Water was Dark and it Went Forever Down. Cate Kennedy's Top 10 Tips for Writers. . Cate is highly regarded as a teacher of short fiction and works as a mentor, editor and judge when not at work on her own writing. To celebrate the release of The Best Australian Stories 2010, Cate shares her Top 10 Tips for Writers.

For the moment, try to forget about marketability, prizemoney, fame, fortune, or who’s going to play you in the miniseries. None of these spurs will actually allow you to write a better story as you’re sitting staring at the blank page. You’re going to spin this out of thin air, so let your subject matter creep up on you from wherever it comes from, and permit yourself the playful mental spaciousness to pay it some non-judgemental, sustained attention. There is nothing in the world you need to research or investigate at this moment, except what’s already bumping around in your head. Don’t worry too much about where it’s going, or the direction it’s taking you in. Try to see this as a two-stage process – the hot stage and the cool stage. Booktopia Presents: Like a House on Fire by Cate Kennedy (Interview with Caroline Baum) The Stella Interview: Cate Kennedy - The Stella Prize. Renovators-heaven.pdf. Black Ice. When I went up to check my traps, I saw that the porch lights at the lady’s place were still on, even though it was morning.

“That’s an atrocious waste of power,” my dad said when I told him. His breath huffed in the air like he was smoking a cigar. The rabbit carcasses steamed when we ripped the skin off, and it came away like a glove. Skin the rabbit—that’s what my mum used to say when she pulled off my shirt and singlet for a bath. Mr. Bailey gives me three dollars for every rabbit, to feed his dogs. I take them down to him in the wooden box with a picture of an apple on it. Dad thinks it’s good to save up your money. He stood there looking at the house and rolled a cigarette. After she moved in I didn’t set no more snares up there on the hill. You’ve got to set a trap so that it kills the rabbit straight off.

After he paid me we looked at the dogs and had a cup of tea. Lately, in the morning, everything is frozen. Sometimes there’s frost on the rabbits’ fur. I said for Mr. Happy Antipodean. Review: Dark Roots, Cate Kennedy (2006) Cate Kennedy writes deftly. Her stories, like Patrick White’s, talk about society, about self-actualisation, and about finding a balance between the personal and the communal, each of which phases of existence has its own demands and imperatives. And there is a great variety of voices in this collection. Each story has its own weight and heft, like a well-made knife. On 11 October, Henry Rosenbloom, Kennedy’s publisher at Scribe Publications, a Melbourne-based outfit, blogged about his visit to the Frankfurt Book Fair. Everyone I met seemed to be talking about or wanting to know about ‘the wonderful Australian writer, Cate Kennedy’ It is no myth.

I was engrossed when I read the country story ‘Cold Snap’ in The New Yorker about a boy who catches rabbits and a city blow-in who kills trees. In September, Stephanie Bishop reviewed Dark Roots in The Sydney Morning Herald and Delia Falconer reviewed it in the Australian Book Review. Whirlpool - | Cate Kennedy. “Mum says you better get inside right now.” Louise is already getting ready for the photo: she has one big hot-roller pinned to the top of her head and two small ones at each side, and she’s applied the skin-tinted Clearasil to the faint outbreaks on her forehead and chin. The cream is not the colour of skin but the strange pink-orange of a bandaid, or a doll. “She says you have to come right now or you’re going to be in big trouble.”

Louise’s ridiculous hair-roller, like a poodle’s flopping topknot, makes you less afraid. She sighs with irritation, hands on hips, and her shadow throws a long shape across the surface of the pool like the elongated silhouette of your father in all the family snapshots, stretched across the foreground of the lawn as he takes a tentative photo of you and Louise on either side of your mother, in front of the rosebushes in the sunshine. You all waited, silent, braced for the rest.

You hover there clenched, rooted to the spot. “It’s about time,” she says. Jennifer mills » podcast feed by Jennifer Mills. Spineless Wonders Asks Jennifer Mills | Short Australian Stories. Jennifer Mills 1. Who are the short fiction authors you admire (Australian or otherwise, alive or dead)? There are too many. I’ll restrict myself to the living: Cate Kennedy, Paddy O’Reilly, Steven Amsterdam, Gillian Mears, Yiyun Li, Etgar Keret, Karen Russell, and I know he’s won too many awards to be fashionable now but I loved Peter Carey’s Fat Man in History. 2.

I would have to cite Flannery O’Connor’s masterful story ‘A Good Man is Hard to Find’ for its humour, brutality, incredible tension, brilliant dialogue and character development. 3. It’s very flexible. 4. I like to think of myself as a versatile writer, rather than a consistent one. 5. The newest ones, of course. 6. Conversation, observation, speculation. 7. I’ll jot down an idea and pretend to forget about it for a while, then one day I’ll start writing, usually when I am putting off some other unpleasant work. Very occasionally I will share work at a late draft stage with someone who was there for the story’s genesis. 8. 9. Writing — Jessica White. ‘I love Ewan McGregor!’ Hannah cried as the Elephant Love Medley from Moulin Rouge began. ‘I wish he’d leave his wife and marry me!’ No-one spoke. No-one had said anything much for days. Evelyn sat in the back, staring at Rick’s neck as he drove.

It was windy when they pulled up in the carpark at Suicides Beach. Hannah was chatty with tension. Rick nodded, scarcely looking at her. Evelyn waited for him to zip up her suit, facing the wind so it blew her hair away from her face. ‘How’re you feeling, Ev?’ Evelyn ignored her. ‘For God’s sake, Evelyn!’ She picked up her board and strode down to the sand. It was the end of their three-week drive from the Indian to the Pacific, a holiday to celebrate the end of uni.

‘What is it?’ ‘It’s a sticky tailflower. Hannah bounded up behind them, her blue eyes sharp and alert. ‘We’re having a look at this flower.’ ‘Pong! Rick and Evelyn walked along the sandy trail back to the car, Hannah following. ‘Poachers,’ Evelyn said absently. ‘Who? Wonnerup?’ ‘Yeah.’ The Sea Lovers — Jessica White. ‘I love Ewan McGregor!’ Hannah cried as the Elephant Love Medley from Moulin Rouge began. ‘I wish he’d leave his wife and marry me!’ No-one spoke. No-one had said anything much for days. Evelyn sat in the back, staring at Rick’s neck as he drove. It was windy when they pulled up in the carpark at Suicides Beach. Hannah was chatty with tension. Rick nodded, scarcely looking at her. Evelyn waited for him to zip up her suit, facing the wind so it blew her hair away from her face. ‘How’re you feeling, Ev?’ Evelyn ignored her. ‘For God’s sake, Evelyn!’ She picked up her board and strode down to the sand. It was the end of their three-week drive from the Indian to the Pacific, a holiday to celebrate the end of uni.

‘What is it?’ ‘It’s a sticky tailflower. Hannah bounded up behind them, her blue eyes sharp and alert. ‘We’re having a look at this flower.’ ‘Pong! Rick and Evelyn walked along the sandy trail back to the car, Hannah following. ‘Poachers,’ Evelyn said absently. ‘Who? Wonnerup?’ ‘Yeah.’ A Mercurial Man — Jessica White. I thought it might have been the mercury that sent our father mad, but Luke, his grimy finger pointing to the entry in the encyclopaedia, insisted that it couldn't have been. “Symptoms of mercury poisoning include sensory impairment, disturbed sensation and a lack of coordination,” he read in his clear, loud voice. “He couldn't have hit mum if he was uncoordinated.”

There were other words we had to look up to check their meaning, such as parasthesia and desquamation, but he didn't seem to have those either, or Luke would have heard about it. Because I was deaf, Luke told me everything he overheard from Mum and Dad. “So it can't have been the mercury,” he concluded. I kept reading. “So?” “He might use vermillion.” We stared at the image of the pigment next to the text, ground into a poisonous red pile. “Let's go and check,” Luke said. We ran across the grass, warm already from the morning sun, to Dad's studio. We poked among the tubes of paint in the worn cardboard shoebox. “Here.” The Country of Boats — Jessica White. She left because the seas were getting colder and she’d heard of mermaids becoming trapped in ice and frozen over.

She had never liked the cold and didn’t want to drown, so she decided to travel south, where it was warmer. Her family thought she was mad, but then, they always had. ‘Odd’ was what they called her, or ‘singular.’ They thought she spent too much time exploring and not enough time sitting on rocks brushing her hair. She was not sorry to leave them, and besides, she preferred her own company. On her journey south there were new sea creatures to play with: she confused pods of dolphins by calling scrambled messages in sonar, brushed sea anemones so they closed in a huff, and was tickled by the fins of lionfish. Eventually, the sea became fickle and threw her against a pile of rocks. When she woke, she found herself on a shore so bright she could barely see.