Off to Byron, Whingeing about Deadlines, Boasting about My Sister, and Some Lovely News (updated)

Sorry about the not blogging of late, especially with you lot being all interesting in the comments (I’ve finally gone through and responded, bless you all). I was kept from it by boring, boring non-internets stuff and the looming deadline. Or rather, panic about the looming deadline. Corey asked of my deadline how soon “scary soon” is: 2 January, which is 17 days away, and I’m about 15-20 thou words short of the end. Also, I’d like to, you know, revise and rewrite before I send it off.

Ordinarily I leave myself a month or more for that, and while I’m revising I send it out to my first readers for comments. There won’t be none of that this time, which worries me deeply. Maybe I can send to first readers at the same time as sending to my editors? Hmmm. Don’t mind my panicking out loud here. Any suggestions for creating time pockets or outsourcing some of the writing are very welcome.

Today we’re off to Byron Bay for almost a week courtesy of my hard-working and very talented sister, Niki Bern, who is so very cool that one of her shots is the current front cover of Cinefex magazine. How amazing is that? Here’s a better look at her shot:

For Niki making the front cover of Cinefex is even better than if I got the front cover and a rave review in The New York Times Book Review. It’s beyond cool! My sister is ubercool! And she’s just hired a house in Byron on the beach for us all to hang out and relax. I ask you: does anyone have a better sister than I do? I didn’t think so. Now, if only I didn’t have to work the whole time I’m there . . .

The lovely news is that Magic or Madness is a finalist for the Aurealis Award for Young Adult novel and so are two (!) of Scott’s books: Peeps and Uglies! Between us we make up three quarters [update: three fifths] of the short list. Most excellent, eh? The other quarter [update: one fifth] is Anthony Eaton for Nightpeople [update: and Isobel Carmody’s Alyzon Whitestar] both of which we’ll be grabbing copies of asap. To make the lovely news even lovelier many our friends are also nominated in other categories: Cat, Sean, Rjurik, and Garth, as well as Rob (stories he edited).

Oh, and one last thing: First Test against South Africa starts at the WACA today. Kill ’em, boys! Aussie! Aussie! Aussie! Oi! Oi! Oi!


  1. corey on #

    Woah, that is scary…especially with the holidays wedged in between. Get to key-dancing!

  2. Justine on #

    Key-dancing! That’s hilarious. Though when the writing’s going good it does feel like you’re dancing. I think I shall adopt it. Thank you!

  3. Ben Payne on #

    There’s actually a fifth nominee, Isobelle Carmody’s Alyzon Whitestar, that got left off the initial press release. So it’s only three-fifths:) Still, well deserved. It’s a rockemsockem book.

  4. rjurik on #

    Justine – cool that you’re nominated for Aurealis. Look forward to seeing you at the awards – yes? Promise I won’t drink so much this time. Honest. Really. Truly.

    Talking of cricket did you ever check out Norman Geras’s cricket writings? Don’t know if they’re good, but he’s smart enough. You can find him at:


  5. Lauren McLaughlin on #

    Niki rocks. And Andrew tells me nothing is harder than compositing hair against a different background.

    Congrats on your nomination!

  6. corey on #

    Hee, I’ll take that as a tremendous compliment ^^

  7. janet on #


    When you figure out how to get cracking on your writing, could you please let me know how you did it?

  8. claire on #

    congrats! plus, “whingeing” is cooler than “whining”, except when you get to say “would you like some cheese with that whine?”, which doesn’t sound right with “whinge”.

  9. Justine on #

    Ben: Thanks for the heads up. Have corrected.

    Rjurik: Yup, I’ll be up in Brissie all nervous and stuff. Uggh. I wish all awards were like the Tiptree and the winner and shortlist were announced at the same time. No nail-biting wait. So much better! My fingers are crossed for you.

    Yup, I did check out Geras. Most excellent. I just wish there was even more on cricket.

    Lauren: Doesn’t she? And, yeah, hair’s a bugger. Look at all those beautiful wisps!

    Janet: You’re kidding, right? When I figure it out I go on a lecture tour and charge everyone squillions to find out.

    Congrats to you, too, on your very recent excellent happening!

    Claire: Whingeing is my favourite word (and some would say my fave passtime) ever! As you note even the loss of the wine/whine pun does not diminish its greatness.

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