Showing posts from June, 2010

[Interview] Annette Wellings

Annette Wellings is a Pilates instructor who suffers from major scoliosis. She began exploring different ways of keeping her body flexible and healthy whilst working as a linguist and artist in Australia and subsequently, she retrained in rehabilitation Pilates. Her book, Curves, Twists and Bends: A Practical Guide to Pilates for Scoliosis (Singing Dragon, 2009), looks at how scoliosis sufferers can benefit from the practice of Pilates. How did you first find out about Pilates? While working as a linguist and an artist in Australia and Fiji, I became increasingly aware of my body becoming more hunched and painful with scoliosis. By the time I was about 35, my spine was rigid and my torso was becoming increasingly twisted. I realised that I needed to do something and explore options, instead of passively sitting by and lamenting the ‘degeneration’ of the spine. I began exploring different ways of keeping my body flexible and healthy, and I discovered Pilates. How easy is Pila

[Interview] Bryony Rheam

Bryony Rheam is a Zimbabwean writer. Her short stories have been featured in anthologies that include Short Writings from Bulawayo I , II and III ; Long Time Coming: Short Writings from Zimbabwe (‘amaBooks, 2008); Laughing Now (Weaver Press, 2007), and Women Writing Zimbabwe (Weaver Press, 2008). Her first novel, This September Sun was released from 'amaBooks in 2009. In this interview, Bryony Ream talks about her writing: How would you describe your novel, This September Sun ? This September Sun is a mystery/romance novel. It may have a deeper meaning and could be read as having post-colonial undercurrents, but that was not the main reason why I wrote it. It's about a young girl growing up in Zimbabwe who longs for a more exciting life elsewhere. She returns to Zimbabwe from the UK when her grandmother is murdered and is forced to face some hard truths about her family history. The novel begins on the day Zimbabwe gets its Independence from Britain and it charts

[Featured Author] Peter Tomlinson

Pigeon Holes Are For The Birds by Alexander James Peter Tomlinson put his literary life on the line when he turned his back on the genre stereotypes agents, publishers and retailers love to slot into their gold-lined pigeonholes – and he’s never looked back. After bravely ploughing an independent furrow in a field of his own, the first two novels in his Petronicus Legacy series have already been released and the third in the trilogy is under contract and its first draft is complete. But even with a solid reputation as the author of nearly 300 poems in eighty poetry and short story magazines in the UK and abroad, the path less trodden – avoiding all genre models – was no easy route for Peter. Mainstream houses turned down flat his first four novels and two one-act plays because they didn’t fit neatly into their well-ordered catalogues. Only when he submitted his fifth novel to an independent press with a more open mind did he pique interest … and not only interest in that b

[Interview: 2 of 2] M. A. Walters

In an earlier interview , science fiction, horror novelist and short story writer, M. A. Walters talked about his collection of short stories, A Flourish of Damage and other Tales (Sonar4 Publications, 2010). M. A. Walters now talks about the influences he draws on as a writer: How would you describe the writing you are doing? I would say it’s a mix. I think I jump across genre lines pretty freely. I think most of my current work is a combination of science fiction, horror, and speculative fiction. I kind of have to think the writer Nina M. Osier for that. She writes in the sci-fi genre and seemed to think it might be a good fit for me. She is a good teacher. Also, she was subtle. I felt it was OK to try on the genre and it was a great fit. Who is your target audience? I try and be inclusive on purpose. For example, I try and write strong, interesting and flawed characters that will appeal to many personalities. I try and hook the reader and keep them moving. I want them bo

[Interview: 1 of 2] M. A. Walters

Maine, New England resident, M. A. Walters is a science fiction, horror novelist and short story writer. His work includes the collection of short stories, A Flourish of Damage and other Tales , which is available as an e-book from Sonar4 Publications. In this interview, M. A. Walters talks about his writing: How long did it take you to come up with A Flourish of Damage ? It took a year to knock the shorts out while working on two novels. Sonar4 is the publisher. They are small but vigorous with solid heads and work ethics behind them. They are smart. I’ve had a chance at a bigger house, but I trust these people and know they will promote me, and I think I have something to offer them also. Which were the most difficult aspects of the work you put into the book? Dealing with domestic violence and some of the darker sub-currents of our culture. In a lot of the shorts in this collection I’m pocking around some uncomfortable patches and corners of my self. I got a little too c

[Interview] Thomas D'Arcy O'Donnell

Canadian script writer, Thomas D'Arcy O'Donnell is the author of Diamond Walker , a blog novel about an 18-year-old shaman baseball player. The novel's protagonist, Jimmy Walker, is a provocative anti-hero who brings a fresh and disturbing capability to America’s Game. He is a cutting-edge warrior and a throwback to old-school modes and values who swims with killer whales and seems to project grace and brightness wherever he goes. In this interview, Thomas O'Donnell talks about his writing: When did you start writing? Diamond Walker started off (in my head) as an idea for a film. I had the idea that if I could create a 'property' or story based in Vancouver, British Columbia, I could come back some day and, instead of working for someone else as a waiter or bartender, I could go to the places that amazed me and the work I did would be making the film that was in my head. Through a strange turn of events, year later, I decided to write the story as a nove

[Book Review] David Shields' Reality Hunger

A True Manifesto or Literati Hype? By Jessica Cortez* Essayist David Shields ' latest book, Reality Hunger: A Manifesto was released earlier this year to both critical approval and a measured amount of hype. Of course, Shields' book endeavored to fulfill a lofty goal — to identify the course of literature's future. Shields is even so bold as to trace the path of Art's future as a whole. And what better way to go about accomplishing this than to self-proclaim the little volume a “manifesto”? Shields begins his network of interrelated theories in an interesting way: Every artistic movement from the beginning of time is an attempt to figure out a way to smuggle more of what the artist thinks is reality into the work of art. He concludes his first chapter, “Overture,” in a similarly grandiose manner, which typifies the rest of the book, by proclaiming, An artistic movement, albeit organic and as-yet-unstated one, is forming. What are its key components? A deliberate

[Interview] Henry McGrath

Henry McGrath studied oriental medicine for nine years, obtaining diplomas in shiatsu, acupuncture and herbal medicine. He is currently the Acupuncture Course Director and Academic Director for the College of Naturopathic Medicine and has undertaken clinical placements in the Herbal Medicine Oncology Departments of several Chinese hospitals in Nanjing and Beijing. Henry is an Orthodox Christian and is interested in the links between religion and medicine. He currently runs his own private practice and works at Penny Brohn Cancer Care . He lives in Bristol, UK. His books include The Traditional Chinese Medicine Workbook (College of Naturopathic Medicine, 2007) and Traditional Chinese Medicine Approaches to Cancer: Harmony in the Face of the Tiger (Singing Dragon, 2009). Why did you first become interested in Traditional Chinese Medicine? I’ve been interested in Eastern culture ever since childhood. I started yoga when I was about 18, then martial arts, and soon became interes