Mos Def, aka Yasiin Bey — Supermagic ::

It seems fitting, after Michael Brown, and Walter Scott, and Freddie Gray, and with the Baltimore Uprising in full swing, to post this. I love this album, I think it’s one of the best ever made, and it opens with a quote you’ll hear if you play the song, a quote from Malcolm X, which, sadly, becomes more and more relevant: … you’re living at … Continue reading Mos Def, aka Yasiin Bey — Supermagic ::

One hundred words on a village community’s relationship with water ::

In the northern foothills of the Alborz mountains, bordering the Caspian Sea, a small village community once existed. It thrived temporarily on the artificial water systems provided to it by a government that lasted not all that long, water pumped from the great dams that watered Tehran on the southern slopes of the mountains, water that ceased to be pumped when certain people ceased to … Continue reading One hundred words on a village community’s relationship with water ::

Book Review — We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves (2013) by Karen Joy Fowler

This review is part of the No Man’s Land Reading Project, an attempt to right a gendered imbalance in my reading and a general imbalance in the availability of reviews (by men, especially) of works by female authors. The first thing I said when I finished Karen Joy Fowler’s immensely popular, critically acclaimed, Man Booker Prize shortlisted seventh novel, We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves, … Continue reading Book Review — We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves (2013) by Karen Joy Fowler

The No Man’s Land Reading Project

A few months ago I read an article by a female author who described the experience of signing her books for men who, as she signed, told her the book was for their mother, sister, girlfriend, wife, daughter, niece, and so on. They did also say they’d enjoyed the reading she’d given beforehand, but the fact that none of them was (admitting to) buying her … Continue reading The No Man’s Land Reading Project

My weird fish (aka my first ever zine) ::

This scanned, uploaded zine would not have existed without Safdar Ahmed, an inspiring, emotive man who ran a workshop at the 2014 National Young Writers’ Festival in Newcastle, NSW, Australia. I made it in the second hour of the two-hour session using this technique, which Safdar taught us, and its unselfconsciousness (a quality my writing usually lacks) owes a lot to his stories of the Refugee … Continue reading My weird fish (aka my first ever zine) ::

Winter time ::

[The following is a short story I wrote for the National Portrait Gallery’s The Big Chill: Fireside Tales short story and poetry competition. The prompt was the photo below, which was taken in Sydney by Dr Julian Smith some time in the 1940s. Nothing is known about the subject, so entrants were asked to use her as their inspiration.] Her father’s arm is around her … Continue reading Winter time ::

My dad smiling ::

In May this year my parents went to Japan for three weeks. It’s the first time they’ve been overseas in almost twelve years, and the longest time they’ve been overseas without my brother and I since 1985. When they came back they borrowed my laptop to show my aunts their travel photos. When they returned the laptop the photos were still on it. I looked through, and noticed myself smiling … Continue reading My dad smiling ::