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Publisher's Welcome

DR_KSP

Welcome to our second eNewsletter of 2013!

The second quarter of the year is proving to be as busy as the first - or even more so. We're finding that advances in print technology are making it possible to respond more quickly to events for our new authors. For example, we're providing stock to Christian Baines for readings while he's still in North America, and we recently provided stock for a Melbourne launch of Bill Rush's latest poetry collection well in advance of the scheduled release date. This Melbourne launch coincided with my trip to Melbourne for library and school visits, but it wouldn't have been possible a few years ago when we had to rely on conventional print runs.

Indeed, I'm drafting this intro on my iPad while on the flight to Melbourne, having left my faithful laptop back at the Studio for the first time. Can your faithful publisher survive several days without his laptop? He hopes so!

Our Rolling Picks program is moving smoothly ahead, with steady submissions and many authors taking advantage of our developmental program for their manuscripts via Short Assessment reports. Our genre editors are reporting good progress for those authors who act on the advice we've been giving.

We're retaining our commitment to physical print, though, with our recent IP Kidz releases printed in substantial numbers and now being heavily promoted in schools and libraries. As a trial, we published Anne Naylor's important book on bipolar disorder in full colour to showcase her brilliant artworks, and early indications are that this book will sell very well.

I'm midway through our Autumn tour, having already enjoyed our IP Gala weekend with events at Belmont Private Hospital and the Kookaburra Cafe, where Anne Naylor's book Art From Adversity: A Life With Bipolar and mine, as well as Janet Reid's Granny Rags, were showcased.

I also launched Robert Vescio & Cheri Scholten's No Matter Who We're With and my book Bringing Down the Wall at Regina Coeli School in Sydney. I also acted as compere for Anne Naylor's sell-out launch at the Harold Park Hotel. Bill Rush's latest collection of poetry, Into the World's Light, was launched in Prahan, followed by my visiting two libraries and four schools before heading back to Brisbane.

A number of excellent prose titles are poised for release soon. More on that in the prose section below.

Happy reading!

Cheers,
David

Editorial

Years ago, well before the current generation of eBooks had come on stream, I was strongly advising that the Australia Council and other national bodies interested in the health of the publishing industry invest in an Australian portal to showcase native titles. Unfortunately, that hasn't come about.

In the vacuum, Australian publishers wanting to keep up with the eBook market have had to list their titles on global sites, where "discoverability" can be a problem. Thanks to metadata, IP gives our titles the best chance of being found by people who already know what they're looking for, but visibility is still a challenge. We track the stores and newsletters of our major distributors such as Amazon, Apple, Kobo, Overdrive and the like, but never seem to see our titles showcased there. Why? This has much to do with the home base of these companies, usually in the US. Naturally, they're more inclined to list local authors because most of their sales happen there.

It's high time to give these companies a serve or two about catering to talent in the markets they serve rather than assuming that Australian or New Zealand readers are only interested in the latest American blockbuster. The technology is already available to show viewers content based on their locale - just look at Google. As much as we can press the point with these distributors, it is you, the customer, who needs to tell them that you want to see great Australian literature being showcased.

Australian agencies like the Australia Council may argue that an Australian portal is unnecessary since we have our own local online shops hosted by companies like Angus & Robertson, Dymocks and Collins Books. But just because they're located here doesn't mean they give an inside track to Australian and New Zealand creators. At least in their physical shops, they have a section for Australian Fiction. Not so online.

Even worse, the prices on some of these sites seem to have no relationship to the RRPs we list. Angus & Robertson is by far the worst offender, inflating our RRPs by as much as 50%. Sites like Borders and Fishpond aren't much better. When we ask them to be more accurate with their prices, they say they're relying on data feeds from our distributors. Wrong!

Is it any wonder that most people shop at Amazon first?

Perhaps it's time to renew the call for an Australian and New Zealands book portal that customers can visit first. The portal could provide a searchable list of available eBooks, that links back to the publisher's store or to their preferred online distributor. Google already does that with their Book Search site, so how difficult can it be?

If Australian and New Zealand customers search and buy local, it benefits local publishers and creators more, since we can cut out the middle person. And that can't be a bad thing.

- DR

In Review

[The reviews that follow are snippets from the full reviews, which you can find by clicking on the thumbnail for the title.

New: You can also sign up for our Reviews eNewsletter which highlights a different book every time! Just email info@ipoz.biz]

No Matter Who We're With by Robert Vescio, illustrated by Cheri Scholten

"A heartwarming story that reinforces the fact that if parents divorce, both parents still love their children. Told from the children's perspective, the story has an authentic feel. No Matter Who We're With would be valuable to read and discuss with young children."
– Margaret Warner, BuzzWords

No Matter Who We're With"No Matter Who We're With is a warm and reassuring picture book for children and an absolute must read for parents who 'live in different houses'."
– Tricia Simmons, Creative Kids Tales

"Vescio has crafted a quaint, endearing story, fun and straightforward in its delivery … positively instilling comfort and an assurance that families can still thrive and survive despite not living in a co-existing environment. Cheri Scholten’s cheerful illustrations sustain the atmosphere of unreserved love. Parents and carers should find No Matter Who We’re With easy to read and share with children regardless of their actual circumstances."
– Dimity Powell, Boomerang Books review

Memories of Dr Shinichi Suzuki: Son of His Environment by Lois Shepheard

"A deeply respectful, warm and beautifully written portrait of Dr. Suzuki, broad enough in its outlook to be of universal interest. Lois Shepheard offers an often humorous look at what it was like to live and study in Matsumoto with Dr. Suzuki over the years. Highly recommended."
– Ruth Miura, Suzuki teacher and trainer, Graduate of the Talent Education Institute, Matsumoto, JapanMemories of Dr Shinichi Suzuki: Son of His Environment

"Lois Shepheard’s highly readable and enjoyable book about Dr Suzuki is a must for all Suzuki Music members as well as anyone interested in music education."
– Julia Breen, teacher, Director of Professional Development for Suzuki Music Victoria

"I read it in a night and a day. The book was almost like looking through a photo album since the impressions that the memories left were dynamic."
– Michael Campbell, professional pianist, former Professor of Piano, Western Illinois University.

The Terrorist by Barry Levy

"The strength of this novel is Fine's inner life andmusings on what it means to be Jewish (he is a South African Jew who has settled in Brisbane) in a global context. It's the personal stuff Terroristof most interest in this novel. There is something engaging and original about this journey in a suburban Brisbanite's heart of darkness."
– Phil Brown, The Courier-Mail

 

Blood by Peter Kay

Blood"Peter Kay writes with sensitivity, brilliance, insightand, above all, humour. Not without it’s thread of weirdness, Blood will leave you thinking. A well-worth it read with a difference."
– Cheryl Chenevier

Even Grimmer Tales by Valerie Volk

Even Grimmer Tales"In Even Grimmer Tales: Not for the Faint-Hearted, Volk takes much-loved stories and flips them on their head. As for Prince Charming rescuing us from a wicked witch or waking us from a sleep with a simple kiss, well . . . we can all dream, can’t we?"
– Liz Walsh, The Sunday Mail (Adelaide)

Focus Interviews

Focus 1: John Rynn and John Corrigan

[Interviewed by Senior Editor Lauren Daniels, John Rynn and John Corrigan talk about being ambassadors for ability, not disability in John Rynn's upcoming memoir You Only Want Me for My Mind & Other Bedtime Stories.]

LD: You Only Want Me for My Mind & Other Bedtime Stories explores the educational and disability services in 1950s and 60s Australia from the perspective of a child with cerebral palsy. Your memoir will attract readers with disabilities as well as therapists and educators. How do you see this story offering insight on today’s issues, despite the changes in the educational and healthcare systems? What central messages are you are hoping to offer to your readers?

JR: I want people to know that they can overcome any adversity with hope and love and the freedom to choose. My struggle as a child was to convince the people who looked after me that I could think and choose for myself. I was less a victim of cerebral palsy than of the head-patting social attitudes of the time.

I believe it’s all too easy to be shackled by what other people think of us. When we don’t believe in ourselves and our freedom to act, we can actually disable ourselves. We can become victims of the very systems that are there to serve us. The systems and experts were put in place to serve us; it is not the other way round.

So, that is what my book is about. Nothing and no one can stop you doing what you want to unless you let them. You have to get up and have a go.

LD: In order to write your memoir, you enlisted the help of your carer, John Corrigan, over the past seven years. Would you describe your writing process for readers? Also, there are so many memories and inspirational moments in this memoir. Most writers have the benefit of jotting notes whenever flashes of inspiration come, but this is not so easy for you. How and when did your ideas come to you? Was it as you worked alongside John C. or would you have to wait until your writing sessions to convey the stories that came to you earlier?

JR: When I first met John Corrigan, he seemed happy to both be a carer and to help me write. When he heard I wanted a bestseller, the blood drained from his face. He found it difficult at first because he thought he would just be typing my words from the perfectly formed sentences that fell off my letter board. Well, he was in for a shock.

I use a simple technique I like to call ‘interactive writing’. I startJohnR a sentence and my assistant completes it with what they think I was going to say. When they get it right we move onto the next sentence, and so on. I dwell over and approve every word that goes into the computer. That’s how I write.

For the last seven years, I got a lot of ideas lying in bed at night. The next morning, John Corrigan would get me out of bed, then wash, dress and feed me, and then we would sit down and put my ideas into the computer. Often, I get ideas while writing. I am creative and I love to play with the details, something like painting. When it’s pretty and funny and just the way I want to remember things, then we get that down. Often, quite good ideas came from John and I sometimes chose to use them. It is through my memories and two writers’ imaginations working interactively together that I have escaped the prison of cerebral palsy and written my book.

* * *

LD: Writing a memoir is a tremendous undertaking for anyone, especially if it explores a person’s deeper truths and sense of meaning in the world. From working with you both, I can see that you have a brotherly bond and a strong friendship that would have helped move this deeply personal as well as literary process along. How would you describe working alongside John Rynn and how did you keep the work forging ahead over these years? Can you shed some light on what it was like to work with him?

JC: The first impression you get when you meet John Rynn is that lurking inside this profoundly disabled body is one profoundly determined dude. When he told me he wanted to write a bestseller, I knew I was in the presence of formidable self-belief.

The scale of the challenge he presented to me was immense. But the clincher was John’s attitude. This book was going to happen with me or without me. And I would be paid to write. I couldn’t resist.

In our very first sessions of writing together, it was difficult to see how the project would ever be started. How could someone who is non-verbal, who paws for minutes over half a sentence, ever manage to produce a convincing memoir? And then, the penny dropped. John offered the first few words of a given sentence and I echoed back to him what I thought he wanted to say. Simple.

JohnCorGradually over the years, using John’s memory, a sketch he wrote when he was young, and lots of imagination, we pieced together what he has always wanted to say. It has been slow, agonising, and extremely difficult at times, but now it has all come together it seems like we were walking on water.

LD: As both a carer and a writer, you bring a unique perspective to this work. What elements were most important to you as the memoir emerged and began its trek towards publication? What are your hopes for the book?

JC: No writer is an island. No one who publishes a good book can ever do so alone or without outside assistance along the way. It was obvious to John Rynn when he first met me that he had to step in and fill in some gaps – I had always wanted to publish, but like a lot of writers, lacked the chutzpah to do it. And it was obvious to me when I met John Rynn that someone had to step in and fill in the gaps – he could certainly write but he lacked the physical wherewithal to do it.

As we pulled apart, restructured and deepened John’s memories, we were surprised to see many of the ingredients of a classical tale forming under our hands. Many elements in this story tugged at my sleeve. I felt compelled to help John properly bring to light this record of an extraordinary family whose love for each other could overcome any adversity. Perhaps the most endearing experience of all was to witness the birth, growth, and coming of age of this indomitable spirit who has now become a symbol of the disability sector’s aspirations for itself. I hope this book gives to John Rynn the audience and sense of completion he so richly deserves.

Focus 2: Deborah Kay and Barry Levy

[Interviewed by Senior Editor Lauren Daniels, Deborah Kay and Barry Levy in turn discuss their collaboration in writing Sawdust, a sexual abuse memoir set during a time of political upheaval.]

LD: With the Royal Commission’s investigations into child sexual abuse currently giving voice to up to 100,000 victims, Sawdust is a timely and important memoir. While it chronicles the sexual abuse of a girl by her father, it is ultimately a story of redemption and hope. When readers consider the finished memoir, they’ll see that it took much insight and strength to articulate your journey into this form. How would you describe your journey towards a published book? What is it that you want to share with people who are facing similar battles?

DK: Firstly, without Barry’s help, this book would not have Sawdustgone to print. I’d read a couple of his books and knew he was the right person for this project. I thought telling my story wouldn’t be such a difficult task, but it was far more emotional than I imagined. I started counselling again during the process as I became quite distressed at times. Barry was the first person other than a counsellor that I had told my story to without reservation, so while it was difficult, it was also liberating.

I’m grateful for this opportunity to share my journey with others who have come from similar circumstances, and to tell them they are not alone. More conversations about childhood abuse will raise awareness.

I would like Sawdust essentially to reveal that we can turn traumatic experiences around in our lives. We can be empowered, stop the cycle of abuse, and go on to have productive, fulfilling lives.

LD: Your story is about transformation and healing. The memoir begins with childhood experiences which were fracturing on so many levels, and yet it reveals an adulthood in which children, both your own and the children you teach, are respected and cherished as wonderful human beings. Your love for your students, your children, and now your grandchildren, is tangible in the text. Over the years, what have been the sources of your strength? What inspires you most?

DK: My two daughters, my son, and now my adorable, free DebHspirited grandchildren, have been my inspiration. I so desperately wanted to be a ‘good’ mum and give them a childhood where they felt safe, loved, respected and valued so they could develop to their fullest potentials. I also feel deeply privileged to work with my students as well.

I was also inspired by author, Dave Pelzer, after reading his book My Story about his abusive childhood. I identified with some of his story and thought he was a wonderful example of how to triumph over childhood adversity. His book planted the seeds for me to begin Sawdust with the hope to empower others as his story did for me. If it is possible to give someone the inspiration and courage to talk and move forward, then it has all been worthwhile.

* * *

LD: As an author and journalist who has won multiple awards for your writing on sex abuse, domestic violence and homelessness, it is clear that your passion lies in work that gives voice to marginalised issues and vulnerable people. How did your path cross with Deborah’s, and what was it that compelled you to help her craft her experiences into a memoir? How would you describe the writing process? Would you share with readers what it was like for you to be engaged in this project?

BL: Deb and I met by coincidence. Pure fate (in as far as authors and journalists find fate). I went to a physiotherapist for the first time for a nagging backache, and it turned out to be Deb's daughter. We got talking about books, especially the subject of child abuse, which as you will see from the story and her own input, was a subject that absolutely rattled her. She bought my books and brought her mum (Deb) along to my next book launch. Some months later she popped the question if I would be interested in writing 'Mum's' story. Always sceptical about how truly 'amazing or original' other people's stories are, I reluctantly said I'd chat to Mum. Deb and I got together, got talking, and wow, man, this story was not just amazing, it was super amazing. And the best part – Deb's openness and willingness to talk about it, no dark corners barred.

For me, it was precisely the sort of issue I was interested in getting out there. And having someone as positive as Deb to work through it with, made it into not just another hard luck story but one, I believe, that will give hope to others.

LD: Sawdust traverses an expanse of developmental and psychological terrain with an intelligent, observant speaker who begins her dialogue with readers at a very young age and sustains it through to adulthood. In short, this is quite a literary feat. What were some of the literary techniques you drew upon in order to convert Deborah’s memories into such a fine narrative? How do you feel these techniques will aid the book’s mission, and what do you feel it is aiming to communicate to audiences?

BL: The point about memoir, more so than autobiography, is that you have greater freedom to cherry-pick the issues and parts of one's history you want to bring to the reader. In this way, although the story is autobiographical, you can make it sound, in a literary sense, more like fiction – with the strong underlying meanings and emotions that go with that. This was important to me as a writer because there was a point, a message, to get across, not just Deb's history, but the lessons and emotions that came out of it.

BarryLTold in this way, but progressing the story from beginning to end (late maturity), as in an autobiography, underpins, I think, the reality of a life that has 'actually' been lived and that is still evolving – with all the faults and mistakes that are part of a natural life.

Hopefully readers will appreciate the integrity of this, and quickly and readily get to the heart of Deb, the story-teller's deep inner strength and constant searching against adversity towards the light.

Focus 3: Murray Alfredson

[Assistant Editor Kimberley Macintyre interviews Adelaide poet Murray Alfredson about his poetry collection The gleaming clouds.]

KM: What is your stance on modern poetic taste? Is there still a place for archaic language in modern day poetry?

MA: With the predominance of free verse, there has also grown what appears to be an attitude that ‘anything goes’ as poetry. I do expect a poem, in whatever form, to have a certain crispness or economy of expression, even when it is rather expansive. When I come across a poem that uses three or four words where one or two could do the same job, or six syllables where two or three are needed, I view that as sloppy writing. I expect that images should be crisp, that a good poem should evoke the experience in the reader. This implies clarity and vividness of the images, an appeal through the six senses, including our mind-consciousness, memories or thoughts arising, and so forth. This sort of poetic discipline does seem to be often lacking these days, and it is not peculiar to free verse forms.

Archaisms? It seems to me there are two types: ‘archaic’ words and syntactic tricks traditionally played by poets, such as inversion of the usual prose and spoken word order, adjectives following their noun, or subject and predicate beingThe Gleaming Clouds reversed without a change of the voice of the verb. These latter practices go back perhaps a thousand years or more. I see no reason to ditch them simply because a few Imagist poets of the early twentieth century revolted (as was their right). I do not think poetic language has ever been identical with either written prose or spoken language. These syntactic devices do make for more flexible composition, both metrically and in rhyme, so why throw away flexibility in our language?

As for ‘archaic’ words ... what exactly are they? Perhaps a word has not been used so far as we know, for the last 500 years. So? If it is the best word for the job, then why not use it? Readers can take recourse to dictionaries.

KM: The Gleaming Clouds has a key emphasis on the theme of mental health. Do you think there is an emotional depth to poetry that connects with this issue more so than informative texts?

MA: Mental health is not in itself very remarkable; it is its absence that we are acutely concerned about. Our brains, like any other body organ, can malfunction. But those of us who are fortunate to have relatively healthy brains often do not relate to or understand what it can be like to have a brain out of whack. In any case, I write poems based on experience. Even when that experience is imagined, as in some of my mythological poems, I still use experience as the basis. Much of my experience in life has been of mental illness; my own and other peoples’. I know those impulses and rambling thoughts. So, just as I might experience an agonis tree, I write poems from time to time out of mental illness.

All good poetry reflects somewhat sharpened insights and appreciations. So yes, I suppose that poems on mental illness do have a sort of emotional depth that may be lacking in academic or popularising discourse. This is not to put down the textbooks, the information sheets, the learned scientific papers; those are very important, and poetry cannot possibly do their job. But although a poem might have the function of enhancing a reader’s sympathetic or empathetic understanding, that is not - in my case - why the poem was written. The poem is a re-creation and suggestion of the experience, and implicitly a comment. Its educational function follows in the wake of that.

KM: Do you think that your broad interest in various religions and former experience as a Buddhist chaplain has influenced your poetic style or content?

MA: Not only my interest in religion, but my interest in both history and Buddhism. These two in their different ways - one by its study of the broad sweep of the human past, the other at a micro level of studying or observing the processes of one’s mind, as well as phenomena outside the mind - teach a universal quality of existence: its essential impermanence. And history teaches us the same about those truths people like to regard as eternal. Our ‘eternal’ truths also die. This is a huge theme, and it does play a large part in my thinking and my poetry. A Buddhist approach is to simply let go. This can be scary, and Buddhism does in many ways enter my poetry ... possibly in more ways than I realise. But it is behind the challenges I offer to other religious people, as in ‘Of gods and truths’, and in rather satirical ‘Divine poems’, three of which are in The Gleaming Clouds.

My chaplaincy experience is essentially not peculiarly Buddhist, but one of working alongside others of very different faith traditions: Christians of various sorts, Muslims, Jews, Baha’is, Hindus, Sikhs, pagans or neo-pagans, and so forth. At best, people use their religious paths as a way for spiritual and moral growth, and belief is secondary to that. Our big problem is that so many of think we are ‘right’. This is another perspective of impermanence. We get too attached to our thoughts. In one way or another, I see the whole collection as a challenge to our sense of certainty.

KM: Is there a particular poem from this collection that resonates with you the most?

MA: No, I do not have a poem that resonates most with me.  There is such a variety in the collection, just as I am spread out in my interests, in the natural world around me, in my MurrayAinteractions with plants and animals, in my interest in other cultures (goodness, almost a quarter of the collection is taken up with translations from mediaeval Old Norse and Middle High German, and from some of the great of more modern German). Of those, I find in the gentle Friedrich Hölderlin a very kindred spirit.

My outlook encompasses the joys and sorrows of existence, and its struggles. I enjoy the ways in which plants in this country have to struggle against the dry, and I admire their successes and feel with them in their failures. I enjoy the way animals, by following their own priorities, ignore the self-importance of us humans. I retain a critical outlook on human life. I suppose in a number of ways, I fit into Schiller’s aesthetic category of a ‘sentimental’ or reflective poet, holding ideas up against nature.

Focus 4: John Saunders

[Interviewed by Assistant Editor Luke Gage, John Saunders discusses his book, Sexual Abuse Survivor's Handbook.]

LG: Child sex abuse is a delicate and confronting issue to discuss. How challenging was it for you to gain the courage to publicly discuss, as you do in this book, your experiences as a sexual abuse survivor?

John SaundersJS: Thanks for asking me this question. I do not feel couragous yet. Does one feel courage? Maybe courage is a retrospective thing that I may feel after a hopefully positive contribution to our society. I will let you know... I feel going public was my only choice. The challenging part for me has been to unravel enormous childhood feelings of betrayal and give them an articulate adult voice. I am challenged with this often.

LG: How important is it for you to tell your story and lift the veil on incidents of sexual abuse that have occurred within the Catholic education system in the past?

JS: One of the most important things in my life. Why? Innocent vulnerability is a place where children and adults have the opportunity to grow enormously. The Catholic Church models their organisation on the teachings of Jesus Christ - a profound spiritual master who loved children and their ability to be innocent and vulnerable. However, when the human spirit is betrayed by a sinful person, at a child's most vulnerable point, it creates a hole in our spiritual human fabric. On a deep subconscious level, a survivor often stops believing or trusting in a benevolent, loving God - and also stops believing in themselves, believing they are a fine, a perfect and most loved piece of creation. And the child suffers the longer it is left unchecked! Often it takes years for a survivor to face their abuse and confront the abuser. And regretfully, sometimes they do not, out of isolation. It is important for the sake of our humanity to reveal the truth. Only then can reconciliation between victims and abusers occur and new organisational procedures be put in place. It takes the power of survivors in great numbers, and their relationship with other victims, to accelerate the healing process for a person to become a survivor. This is my experience anyway. There is new meaning for me in the expression 'Safety in Numbers'.

LG: Although your journey as a sexual abuse survivor is one of self-discovery, you also stress how your support network helped you in your healing. Would you discuss how valuable reaching out to this support network, your partner, children, friends and counsellors, has been in your healing process?

JS: No words can really express the many moments I am grateful for, when supportive friends are there for me, to reflect back to me my 'true humanity'. As a consequence of my abuse, I sometimes find myself in a deep state of isolation. This can creep up on me unexpectedly. Once I am nearing or in this 'isolated space' I have to reach out quickly to others to get the pain off my chest, often through friends, family, counsellors just listening to me. Then I can see again my love for myself. The more I practise reaching out quickly, the more I can pull myself up before I go down. Acceptance and self-compassion are key.

LG: In the book you detail the exhaustive, and often frustrating, process of putting your case through the legal justice system. Knowing what you do now, what would be the one main thing you would have done differently in this process?

JS: I would have gotten every spoken word put in writing, and I would have sought support from an offshore Human Rites organisation to oversee the process. These days, we have such organisations in Australia ourselves.

LG: Awareness of child sex abuse has been given greater social currency recently, with the commencement of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sex Abuse. What do you hope some of the outcomes of this Royal Commission will be?

JS: I hope that Australia’s Royal Commission looks to world organisations such as the OECD as a resource, so that they utilise our country’s financial wealth and their time effectively to expedite change and make Australia the model for other countries to follow. My hope is that victims, and those indirectly affected by child abuse, may one day find peace in knowing there is a public awareness program in place that breaks down the social taboo that greatly restricts the disclosure of past and present abuse acts. I hope that our government is active in creating organisational reform within organisations where child abuse occurs. I hope that realistic financial compensation packages are in place for victims who have endured life-long emotional, psychological and financial suffering as a consequence of their time as a child abuse victim. And I also hope that their painful and courageous disclosures of abuse contribute to the Australian Government enforcing organisational protocols that stop child abuse recurring within the same organisations.

LG: Do you think the Australian Royal Commission will help in breaking the social taboo of discussing child sex abuse and encouraging others to speak out like you have done with your book?

JS: This is yet to be seen. Recently the NSW Government has announced its Victims Rights and Support Bill, which will completely overhaul the NSW Victims Compensation Scheme. The principal concerns with the Bill include that the legislation places a 10 year time limit on making claims for compensation payments. Given the time it takes many victims of childhood sexual abuse to come forward, many of these people will be no longer eligible for even the nominal payments offered by the scheme. When our government responds with this sort of attitude, abuse victims do not feel much hope for reconciliation and support for their voices.

 

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         FEATURED ARTISTS

Anne Therese Naylor

Anne Naylor
Art from Adversity: A Life with Bipolar

David P Reiter

David P Reiter
Bringing Down the Wall

Heather Taylor Johnson

Heather Taylor Johnson
Thirsting for Lemonade

Bill Rush

Bill Rush
Into the World's Light

John Rynn

John Rynn
You Only Want Me for My Mind & Other Bedtime Stories

John Saunders

John Saunders
Sexual Abuse Survivor's Handbook

Janet Reid

Janet Reid
Granny Rags

Robert Vescio

Robert Vescio
No Matter Who We're With

Barry Levy

Barry Levy
The Terrorist

Valerie Volk

Valerie Volk
Even Grimmer Tales

Peter Kay

Peter Kay
Blood

Simon Kleinig

Simon Kleinig
Frenchmans Cap: Story of a Mountain

 

 

IP Digital Buzz

As more and more people warm to the idea of eBooks, we've noticed a steady growth in the number of distributors adding eBooks to their lists. IP continues to be popular source of eBooks with global distributors.

Just recently, IP signed with Gardners, UK, giving us greater access to markets not only in Britain but throughout Gardners' growing global network.

Even more recently, we signed with Peter Pal, a Queensland distributor, as a pilot publisher for their new digital platform, providing them with eBook content. Peter Pal has contracts with a number of library systems in Australia and New Zealand, including the Brisbane and Gold Coast Libraries, as well as networks in Tasmania and New Zealand.

And we've signed a contract for an extended DPC_logopartnership with James Bennett and their North American parent company Baker & Taylor to take advantage of their digital networks.

In digital sales, generally our agreements are non-exclusive – that is, we can list our titles with any number of distributors. This ensures we have the greatest possible reach for our publications. That's good news for our customers and content creators, as well as us.

True to form, IP continues to release its new titles in the most popular eBook formats, as well as in physical book form. If you have a tablet, a Kindle, or even just a smartphone, why not order an eBook or two from the IP Store and see how far eBooks have come?

And if you have a new title you'd like to publish in the key digital formats, or even an older one that you'd like to resurrect, why not contact our Digital Publishing Centre to see how we can help?

Prose Picks

Our Fiction and Creative Non-Fiction categories shortlisted several titles at the IP Rolling Picks Editorial Board meeting in April.

Two works shone brightly in Creative Non-Fiction, both of them team efforts: You Only Want Me for My Mind & Other Bedtime Stories by John Rynn and John Corrigan, and Barry Levy and Deborah Kay’s Sawdust. Royalty publication was awarded to both. Award-winning author, Guy Salvidge took the publication spot in Fiction with his novel, Yellowcake Summer, a sequel to Yellowcake Springs, and Russell Guy, an Alice Springs journalist, playwright and author, shortlisted with his novel The Holy Highway.

In August, we will review our titles to select the winning book in each category. In the meantime, we welcome new submissions and hope to see revised entrants return!

Simon Kleinig’s Frenchmans Cap: Story of a Mountain continues to gain extensive attention in Australia and the UK.

Art from AdversityAnne Naylor has launched her memoir, Art from Adversity: A Life with Bipolar with especially warm receptions at Brisbane’s Bellmont Hospital and Sydney’s Harold Park Hotel.

Christian Baines’ vampire novel set on Sydney’s Oxford Street, The Beast Without is now available digitally as well as via print-on-demand. Baines’ launch schedule for Australia and North America is in the works.

The memoir, Sawdust by Deborah Kay and Barry Levy, is in production with release slated for later in the year. Sawdust courageously explores the emotional and psychological aspects of child sex abuse under particularly harrowing circumstances – when the perpetrator is a parent.

John Rynn and his carer, John Corrigan, are finalising revisions for You Only Love Me for My Mind & Other Bedtime Stories – John Rynn’s memoir about growing up in Queensland in the 1950s and 60s with cerebral palsy. Rynn is an accomplished artist, as well as a public speaker and role model for people with disabilities.

For our assisted self-publishing titles, John Biggs’ novel From Ashes to Ashes is rapidly approaching release. An educational psychologist and educator, John has published four previous novels and his Tasmania launch schedule is to be announced.

Yoga HappinessAnna Heggie’s health book, Yoga Happiness: A Path for Transformation is ready for release as an enhanced eBook with illustrations and audio, as well in full colour print. Heggie is the director of Yoga Arts Fusion and Annushka Creative Spirit Workshops and Retreats in Lennox Head, New South Wales.

IP will be contributing to the Royal Commission’s investigations into child sexual abuse with our impending release of The Sexual Abuse Survivor’s Handbook by John Saunders. Saunders’ memoir confronts the child abuse by his teachers during his Catholic education. IP is pleased to report that the book has been graciously endorsed by Steve Biddulph, acclaimed parenting author, educator and psychologist. The book will also have a featured slot at the Byron Bay Writers Festival! It too will be available in eBook versions as well as in physical print.

Tips To Write Kids Books

When it comes to submitting children’s books for publication, what are editors really looking for? Here are some key things to keep in mind when writing or revising your picture book manuscript or junior prose project:

Picture Books:

1.  Every word counts. You don’t have too many words to play with when writing a picture book, so make sure the text is tight and snappy. If you want to write in rhyme, think carefully about it first; the last line of a stanza can often be ‘padding’, only there to provide the rhyme.

2.  There needs to be a story. Although the plot of a picture Bringing Down the Wallbook won’t be as developed as that of a novel, there still needs to be something driving the story. Make sure that there is some form of tension, conflict, mystery or excitement to make kids want to keep reading.

3.  What sets your book apart? Having depth or thematic relevance will make a picture book stand out from the crowd. But when including your deeper themes, don’t forget that the story itself still needs to keep children interested.

4.  Leave room for the illustrations. The best picture books have illustrations that add an extra layer of meaning to the story. Remember that the text itself doesn’t need to describe everything; you can always include illustration notes to highlight any important details you feel should be included in the artwork.

Junior Prose:

1.  Flesh out your characters. Credible, three-dimensional characters make a story much more engaging. The reader needs to believe that your characters are real people, so give them backstories, personalities, and complex thoughts and feelings.

2.  Check the pacing of your story. To keep a child’s attention, a story needs to start quickly, so make sure that you don’t ../Titles/GR.htmtake too long getting to the action. Also make sure that the plot keeps moving the whole way through the manuscript – that events keep unfolding, you reveal new information and there’s plenty of tension and drama.

3.  Is your story interesting? Pay attention to the way you write. Use active verbs and make your sentences to-the-point. Avoid extended passages of description and long conversations that don’t include any action. Your job is to keep the reader engrossed. Above all, will your story make me want to keep reading?

4.  Spelling and punctuation are important! A manuscript with lots of errors will give editors a bad impression, so make sure you’ve triple-checked your manuscript for mechanical errors before you send it anywhere.

IP Kidz Update

I arrived back from leave just in time for the launch of our four new IP Kidz titles – Granny Rags, No Matter Who We’re With, Bringing Down the Wall and The Smallest Carbon Footprint in the Land & other eco-tales. It’s always exciting seeing the printed copies of a book for the first time, and we’re very pleased with how they all turned out!

We’ve also recently made available German translations of four of our IP Kidz titles – The Sky Dreamer, I Love You Book, No Matter Who We’re With and Bringing Down the Wall. Thanks to our German intern Michele Beer for all her hard work on those.

Since coming back from leave I’ve been working through the (electronic) pile of children’s and YA manuscripts that have come in for IP Rolling Picks. Thanks to everyone who has submitted something; I’ve seen several promising manuscript, and we have already offered publication to Lindsey Little for her YA manuscript James Munkers: Super Freak. (James Munkers was previously Highly Commended in the Young Adult / Junior Prose category of IP Picks 2012.)

Poetry Snippets

IP's poetry list continues to attract submissions from Australia and New Zealand's best, with a number of submissions coming through our Rolling Picks Program.

Just released in Melbourne was Bill Rush's Into the World's Light, scheduled to coincide with David's trip there as a part of our Autumn Season tour.

Upcoming will be an Adelaide release of Heather Taylor Johnson's second IP title, Thirsting for Lemonade, on 30 May, Thirsting for Lemonadeprior to Heather's departure for a North American tour. Given that Heather's work straddles her life here and in the USA, it seems quite appropriate that audiences there will have a chance to experience it 'in the flesh'!

Murray Alfredson, another Adelaide author, will have his book, The Gleaming Clouds, launched in Adelaide early in the second half of the year. Murray's book is enhanced by images created by his wife Jyoti.

Recently accepted for publication is our award-winning poet Jane Williams' Selected and New, Elizabeth Lawson's Penelope's Chairs, and the Mapuche Tri-lingual anthology, compiled and edited by a team including Australian academic Stephen Brock.

VoyagersTim Jones, New Zealand author and editor, has teamed up with Penelope Cottier (Canberra) to compile an Australian version of our popular Voyagers: Science Fiction Poetry from New Zealand. IP has committed to this anthology, and Penelope and Tim are currently seeking submissions (take note if you have suitable poems in that genre).

Call for submissions:
New IP anthology

You are invited to submit up to three poems (published or unpublished) for an anthology of Australian speculative poetry. Submissions close on 4th June.
The Stars Like Sand: Australian Speculative Poetry will be edited by Tim Jones (New Zealand) and P.S. Cottier (Australia), and will be published by IP. Speculative poetry encompasses science fiction, horror, fantasy and magic realism.

Send your work in the BODY of an e-mail to starslikesand@gmail.com. Attachments will not be opened.
Previously published works should contain details of first publication and any information about any rights held by publishers. All selected poets will receive a free copy of the anthology.

Please go to: http://pscottier.com/2013/02/25/poetry-wanted-for-new-anthology-guidelines/ for further details before submitting. Please note that submissions are welcome from anyone living in Australia, and from expatriates.

Out and About

Our Autumn Season kicked off with the Brisbane launch of Art from Adversity: A Life with Bipolar by Anne Naylor at the Belmont Private Hospital on Saturday, April 20. The next day was our Gala event at the Kookaburra Café, featuring Anne, Janet Reid (Granny Rags) and David Reiter (Bringing Down the Wall).

David then headed south to spend a day at Regina Coeli School in Sydney, where he and Robert Vescio (No Matter Who We're With) presented their books to classes from Kindy through Grade 6.

On 4 May, we had the Sydney launch of Anne Naylor's book at the Harold Park Hotel, with a brilliant launch speech by Professor Gin S Malhi, Director, CADE Clinic and Head of the Department of Psychiatry, University of Sydney. You can watch videos of Professor Malhi's intro and Anne's presentation by linking from the book's mini-site.

David then flew on to Melbourne where he compered the launch of Bill Rush's latest book Into the World's Light at the Prahan Mission on Sunday afternoon, 5 May. The book was launched by Professor Bryan Smith, former Vice Chancellor, University of Western Sydney, and a long time admirer of Bill's work.

The following day, David visited Brighton Library and Brighton Primary School before having readings form Bringing Down the Wall to upper primary classes at Brighton Beach Primary School.

Finally, on the Tuesday David drove to Shepparton, where he had readings at Bourchier Primary School and a visit to Shepparton Library.

Students at all the schools were pleased to have as their guest not only a published author, but a publisher who could answer all their questions about how long it would take for them to make a fortune from their own writing!

Upcoming events:

21-22 May – Sydney:  Sydney Writers' Festival - David will be promoting IP children's titles including Bringing Down the Wall, No Matter Who We're With, and The Smallest Carbon Footprint in the Land & other eco-tales, and adult's titles including Art From Adversity, The Terrorist, and Memories of Dr Shinichi Suzuki.

30 May – Adelaide:  Australian launch of international poet Heather Taylor Johnson's new collection, Thirsting For Lemonade, at 6:30pm at the SA Writers' Centre, Adelaide.

Mark Carthew & Mike Spoor will be touring several places, including Melbourne, with an event at the Eltham Bookshop, the Gold Coast hinterland at Marks & Gardner Gallery, and events at the State Library of Queensland associated with Mark's May Gibbs Fellowship. Mark and Mike's latest IP title is Witches, Britches, Itches & Twitches.

You can RSVP to any IP event by emailing us at info@ipoz.biz

Please follow us on Facebook or Twitter for updates.

Your Deal

Deal 1: "Like" our Digital Publishing Centre page on Facebook before 1 June for a FREE IP eBook of your choice! That's right, simply go to our Facebook page, check out all the digital news, "like" what you see, and then email us your choice of eBook title, letting us know if you prefer Kindle (.mobi), ePub or optimised pdf version.

Deal 2: Order David P Reiter's Bringing Down the Wall online and get FREE shipping AND a FREE eBook version of his previous picture book Real Guns. Most of our titles are available in Kindle (.mobi), ePub and optimised pdf versions, so let us know your preference.

Deal 3: Order The Taste of Apple in print with FREE shipping and receive a bonus CD of James Laidler reading to Don Stewart's orginal music.

Order by 1 June from sales@ipoz.biz with Deal 1, Deal 2 or Deal 3 as your Subject. Include your postal address and how you want to pay (for Deals 2 or 3) – EFT or PayPal.

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