Shortlist — British Fantasy Awards

A huge honour (and surprise): Flyaway has been shortlisted for the “Best Newcomer (The Sydney J. Bounds Award)” at the British Fantasy Awards!

Congratulations to all my fellow nominees (and links to their books):

The full announcement of the shortlists in all categories is at:

Flyaway: World Fantasy finalist


I am thrilled and honoured that Flyaway has been included as a finalist in the World Fantasy Awards for best novella.

My fellow-nominees are

  • Ring Shout, or Hunting Ku Kluxes in the End Times by P. Djèlí Clark (Tordotcom)
  • “Stepsister” by Leah Cypess (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, May/June 2020)
  • The Four Profound Weaves by R. B. Lemberg (Tachyon Publications)
  • Riot Baby by Tochi Onyebuchi (Tordotcom)

Here is the full list of Final Ballot and Life Achievement Award Winners for the awards, to be announced this November.

Megan Lindholm
Howard Waldrop

Piranesi by Susanna Clarke (Bloomsbury)
Trouble the Saints by Alaya Dawn Johnson (Tor Books)
The Only Good Indians by Stephen Graham Jones (Saga Press/Titan UK)
Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia (Del Rey US/Jo Fletcher Books UK)
The Midnight Bargain by C. L. Polk (Erewhon Books US/Orbit UK)

Ring Shout, or Hunting Ku Kluxes in the End Times by P. Djèlí Clark (Tordotcom)
“Stepsister” by Leah Cypess (The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction, May/June 2020)
Flyaway by Kathleen Jennings (Tordotcom)
The Four Profound Weaves by R. B. Lemberg (Tachyon Publications)
Riot Baby by Tochi Onyebuchi (Tordotcom)

“Glass Bottle Dancer” by Celeste Rita Baker (Lightspeed, April 2020)
“The Women Who Sing for Sklep” by Kay Chronister (Thin Places)
“The Nine Scents of Sorrow” by Jordan Taylor (Uncanny Magazine, July/Aug. 2020)
“My Country Is a Ghost” by Eugenia Triantafyllou (Uncanny Magazine, January/February 2020)
“Open House on Haunted Hill” by John Wiswell (Diabolical Plots, June 15 2020)

Edited By, edited by Ellen Datlow (Subterranean Press)
The Valancourt Book of World Horror Stories, Vol. 1, edited by James D. Jenkins and Ryan Cagle (Valancourt Books)
Shadows & Tall Trees 8, edited by Michael Kelly (Undertow Publications)
The Book of Dragons, edited by Jonathan Strahan (Harper Voyager)
The Big Book of Modern Fantasy, edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer (Vintage Books)

The Best of Jeffrey Ford by Jeffrey Ford (PS Publishing)
Velocities: Stories by Kathe Koja (Meerkat Press)
Where the Wild Ladies Are by Aoka Matsuda, translated by Polly Barton (Soft Skull Press US/Tilted Axis UK)
We All Hear Stories in the Dark by Robert Shearman (PS Publishing)
Nine Bar Blues: Stories of an Ancient Future by Sheree Renée Thomas (Third Man Books)

Rovina Cai
Jeffrey Alan Love
Reiko Murakami
Daniele Serra
Charles Vess

Clive Bloom, for The Palgrave Handbook of Contemporary Gothic (Palgrave Macmillan)
C. C. Finlay, for The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction editing
Jo Fletcher, for Jo Fletcher Books
Maria Dahvana Headley, for Beowulf: A New Translation (MCD X FSG Originals US/Scribe UK)
Jeffrey Andrew Weinstock, for The Monster Theory Reader (University of Minnesota Press)

Scott H. Andrews, for Beneath Ceaseless Skies: Literary Adventure Fantasy
Brian Attebery, for Journal of the Fantastic in the Arts
Michael Kelly, for Undertow Publications
Arley Sorg and Christie Yant, for Fantasy Magazine
Lynne M. Thomas and Michael Damian Thomas, for Uncanny Magazine

Flyaway shortlisted for Courier-Mail People’s Choice Award (voting open now)

Shortlist for The Courier-Mail People’s Choice Award

Flyaway has been shortlisted for The Courier-Mail People’s Choice Queensland Book of the Year Award! The winner is determined by public vote, and voting is now open. Anyone in Australia may vote, one vote per person, with polling closing on 16 August 2021.

It is a tremendous honour to be included on the shortlist with seven various and wonderful other titles — and particularly with Angela Slatter‘s gothically fantastic All The Murmuring Bones. I have been working on cover art for the (forthcoming) hardcover of Angela’s novel, and Flyaway wouldn’t have happened without her. So do with that information what you will!

The shortlist judges said of Flyaway:

A dazzling gothic fairy tale of rural Australia. The disappearance of Bettina Scott’s family members leads her to uncover truths about her home – the haunting spectacle of small-town psyche expertly sewn throughout the novel. There is a magic rooted in this story that grows more real with every page.

So if you are based in Australia and willing to vote (according to your conscience!), voting is now open on the State Library website here: The Courier-Mail People’s Choice Queensland Book of the Year Award.

Barnes & Noble, Union Square!

Photo by Jennifer London for Sam J Miller

I pinched (with permission!) this photo Jennifer London took of Sam J Miller’s novel The Blade Between in the front of store display in the Union Square Barnes & Noble in New York, because my Flyaway is there too!

You can buy both books through all good bookstores. The Blade Between is published by Ecco/Harper Collins and Flyaway is published by in the USA and Picador in Australia.

I’ve written more about the two Flyaway covers here: Flyaway Cover Comparison.

Crawford Award finalists (including Flyaway!)

Congratulations to Nghi Vo for receiving the William L. Crawford Fantasy Award for The Empress of Salt and Fortune (, presented annually by the International Association for the Fantastic in the Arts (IAFA) for a first book of fantasy fiction.

The finalists are:

It’s an honour to appear on the list with them.

Locus Recommended — Flyaway!

The Locus 2020 Recommended Reading List has been published — a lovely list of very excellent short and long works, in a number of categories. All the ones that I’ve read on the list have been thoroughly enjoyable. And Flyaway is included!

Beautiful Australian Gothic Books

Gouache painting in pinks, purples, blues, and greens, of standing boulders, grass, birds flying against clouds
Painting by me, after a trip to Hanging Rock, while working on Flyaway — more on those illustrations at Illustrating Flyaway (who published Flyaway) asked me for a post for their Five Books About… series. I promptly forgot how to count, so here are:

Six Stories for Fans of Beautiful Australian Gothic

Flyaway! The US edition arrives

My author copies of the (USA) edition of Flyaway had been been continually delayed by international postal situations. But yesterday I was busy setting up for Twelfth Night when a UPS van pulled up, and it was them! They are here!

They are hardbacks, smaller than the Australian edition, beautifully rough on the dust jacket and gleaming underneath. I just want to keep touching them. (The words are the same in both editions, but the US has gold foil and Australia has a few extra animals.)

They look so lovely!

I’ve talked about the different covers here: Flyaway cover comparison (I love them both, and the title typeface here particularly delights me).

You can buy this edition through good bookstores and the usual online suspects (and the details for the Australian edition are here), or read an excerpt first on

2020 in review: Things I wrote

2020 was the year of people saying, “I didn’t know you wrote!”. But I do! And now my mother has books to prove it.

US cover ( and Australian cover (Picador)

Flyaway, my Australian Gothic… novella or short novel, depending on how you count, was published this year. It was my very first book all of my own, and close to my heart because it was about the places I loved when I was small, and how I learned to see them through stories. And secrets and murder and bone-horses too, of course. It was published by in the US and Picador in Australia (and I’ve written about it a fair bit on here), and illustrated by me, and there is an audiobook (read by Felicity Jurd, whom I interviewed here).

Brain Jar Press

A few months after Flyaway, my second book came out. Travelogues: Vignettes from Trains in Motion is a chapbook of… well, it looks like poetry. It began as tweets. It’s a collection of moments of description from 9 train journeys in the USA and the UK (it’s also not illustrated, but here are some I thought about doing for it). It was surprisingly lovely to revisit those this year. I was also delighted to be one of Brain Jar Press‘s first authors — keep an eye on them! They’re doing interesting things. reprinted my story “Undine Love“, a tale of broken promises and bagpipes first published in Andromeda Spaceways in 2011. It’s related to Flyaway, and I made new illustrations for it, in keeping with the illustrations for Flyaway.

Strange Horizons

Strange Horizons published my (actually short) story “The Present Only Toucheth Thee“, which is either about soul mates or serial killing, depending on how you look at it. They also published an audio version of it, which was the first audio I’d had done of one of my stories.

Egaeus Press

And on December 5, Egaeus Press brought out a very limited edition anthology of poison stories, Bitter Distillations, including my story “Not To Be Taken”.

In addition, I sold three stories which are to be published next year: “On Pepper Creek”, “The Wonderful Stag, or: The Courtship of Red Elsie”, and “Gisla and the Three Favours.” More on those in due course!

In a more academic vein, my paper “Contracts and Calcifer, or “In Which A Contract Is Concluded Before Witnesses”: the transactional structure of Howl’s Moving Castle” was printed in The Proceedings of the Diana Wynne Jones Conference, Bristol 2019. Another paper was accepted for publication in February 2021: “Heyer… in Space! The Influence of Georgette Heyer on Science Fiction”, Georgette Heyer, History, and Historical Fiction, ed. Samantha Rayner and Kim Wilkins, UCL Press.

I also wrote and contributed to a number of articles, blog posts, interviews, and podcasts. Some of them are listed on the Flyaway page. Longer pieces included “Illustrating Flyaway: Kathleen Jennings on Creating Art and Prose Together” on, A Conversation with Kathleen Jennings (about illustrating the QLA winners) for SLQ, and “What I’m Reading” on Meanjin.

I’d also been wanting to post more here (prompted in part by Austin Kleon’s reasoning, which held true for me). I posted 274 times here, and 124 times on And quite a few of the posts on here were about the observation journal, which I think counts as one of this year’s writing achievements — I kept it from mid-January through to the week before Christmas, and am now taking a deliberate holiday for a couple of weeks (but I miss it).

Capalaba Library — author talk

This Friday 11 December 2020, from 2-3pm, I am delighted to be giving an author talk at Capalaba Library.

It’s free, but it’s limited to 20 people. Tickets can be booked through the library: book here.

Books will be available.