Interview: Poppy Nwosu, YA author

Poppy Nwosu is an Adelaide-based, young adult author. Growing up in central North Queensland, she enjoyed a thoroughly wild childhood surrounded by rainforest and cane fields. Her debut novel, Making Friends with Alice Dyson, was published in March this year and has just been shortlisted for the prestigious Readings Young Adult Book Prize 2019. Editor…

Review: The Van Apfel Girls Are Gone by Felicity McLean, by Shelley Carter

Title: The Van Apfel Girls Are Gone Author: Felicity McLean Genre: Fiction Thriller/Mystery Favourite Part: When a young Tikka re-enacts (unsuccessfully) the Lindy Chamberlain saga as her talent show act — it was a great juxtaposition to the seriousness that was happening regarding the Van Apfel sisters during the climax of the story, and also…

Freelance Writing series part 9: Getting your first paid gigs

Article by Jess Gately Image from Canva Free Stock Images In the last post we discussed ways that you can start a portfolio of your writing by incorporating articles you may have written for university, for your personal blog or things you’ve written for former employers, or by listing previous ‘clients’ you’ve worked with for free. In this…

Writing Opportunities for June 2019

Image from Canva free stock images BREW: Bush Retreats for Eco-Writers residencies The Bush Retreats for Eco-Writers (BREW) network offers free 10-day residencies for writers, poets, students and artists exploring ecological themes. There are five properties across NSW, Victoria and Queensland. More information at their website. Wombat Books accepting unsolicited children’s book manuscripts ‘We are looking for…

Review: Four Dead Queens by Astrid Scholte, by Jess Gately

Title: Four Dead Queens Author: Astrid Scholte Publisher: Allen & Unwin (2019) Genre: YA Fantasy Every so often a book comes along where the pacing is so perfect—the tension rises steadily  and the plot races forward—that you find yourself turning the last pages at two o’clock in the morning wondering how ‘just one more chapter’…

Writing Your Author Bio, by Jemimah Halbert Brewster

Image from Canva Free Stock Images Whether you enjoy or loathe writing them, an appropriate author bio is essential when presenting yourself to your audience as it orients you within the writing canon, and educates others on your particulars. Some authors use their bio to denote what genre or format they work in (e.g. poetry, essays, etc….

Perth Independent Book Tour, by Jess Rae

When you don’t drink alcohol or coffee, what could possibly be your vice? Bookstores—duh! At least in my case that’s exactly what it is. It’s true, loyal Underground readers: I took one for the team, went on a bookstore tour and spent a lot of money, but shhh. Don’t tell anyone. It’s for research, I…

Freelance writing series part 8: Building a Portfolio

Article by Jess Gately Image from Canva Free Stock Images Your business is now pretty much set up and ready to go, but there’s one last thing you’ll normally need to attract clients—a portfolio. Just like in any business, people want to know that you can actually do what they’re asking you to do and the best…

Issue 26: Ashes

Cover by Ari Moore Issue 26: Ashes is here for your reading pleasure. This month we bring you a tasting plate of short fiction, flash fiction and poetry by writers from around Australia, including Sophie Roberts, Elaine Mead, Nadia Kim, W.D. Farnsworth and Ash Leonard. Editor Shelley Carter gives us a run-down of Gus Henderson’s…

Review: The Sunday Girl by Pip Drysdale, by Jess Rae

Trigger warning: this review discusses a book that contains themes of abusive relationships, drug-abuse, and sexual assault. WARNING: This is the kind of book that requires a comfy couch, a good hot beverage and maybe some snacks too because once this book gets going you’re not going to want to stop. I saw this book…

Interview: Lorna Hendry, author

An interview by Shelley Carter Lorna Hendry is a writer, editor, graphic designer and teacher, and studied a Bachelor of Science at university before writing children’s non-fiction. She currently writes for Wild Dog Books and in her current published work How to Win a Nobel Prize, she teams up with Nobel Prize winner Barry Marshall…

8 Aussie Podcasts for Writers, by Jess Gately

Image from Canva free stock images Writing is something you can learn in many different ways and while many will tell you to learn by reading, we can also learn by listening! The rise of the podcast means that speciality shows catering to all your passions, learning and entertainment needs, are just a click away. So, of…

Stella Prize 2019 Overview: what was shortlisted this year? By Shelley Carter

Picture credit to 2ser Tuesday Book Club Since its inception in 2013, the Stella Prize has aimed to “recognise and celebrate Australian women writers’ contribution to literature.” It celebrates those who courageously and authentically share their stories, subvert genres, and experiment with form. This year was no different, and both the longlist and shortlist offering…

Freelance writing series part 7: A word from the professionals

Article by Jess Gately Image from Canva Free Stock Images We’re welcoming back Ruth Dawkins, Lindy Alexander and Abby Alexander, our resident freelancers who are discussing some of the things we’ve been talking about so far and giving us an insight into the working world of freelance writing. What was the hardest thing you had to learn…

Interview: Dee White, author & playwright for children & young adults

An interview by Shelley Carter Dee White is a published author of 18 books and two plays for children and young adults, with two new books due out this year. She has had extensive experience in the publishing industry, including conducting writing workshops and online classes about writing. She has presented at a number of…

Writing Opportunities April 2019

Image from Canva free stock images Red Room Poetry: School Poetry Object 2019 “Victorian primary schools are invited to register – FOR FREE – in the first-in-the-nation primary school poetry slam competition, in 2019, with OutLoud primary finalists to appear at the Melbourne Writers Festival. Registration would usually be $275 per primary school team but the free…

Planning a Novel, by Jess Gately

Image from Canva Free Stock Images Take what you will from this process and build upon it in a way that best suits you. You may wish to use all of the steps, or you may wish to use only some, but the key is to work in a way that is best suited to you and…

Review: Driving Into the Sun by Marcella Polain, by Dylan Dartnell

Title: Driving Into the Sun Author: Marcella Polain Genre: Literary fiction Publisher: Fremantle Press (2019) The novel that took some ten years to write, Marcella Polain is back with her breath-taking work, Driving into the Sun (Fremantle Press, 2019). The story revolves around an eleven-year-old girl named Orla on the precipice of womanhood. She, like most…

8 BookTubers to Spice up Your Reading, by Shelley Carter

I discovered Booktube back in 2016. It was like a whole new world of literature had opened up to me. Books I had no idea even existed made their way onto my TBR list, and I even discovered Goodreads because of the people I was watching. I had found a community of people that were…

Freelance Writing series part 6: Tax & Superannuation

Image from Canva Free Stock Images Article by Jess Gately Those dreaded words. The ones that fill our heads with question marks and swear words. For many people tax is frustrating, confounding and unintelligible. Having a tax agent is a really good idea when you’re freelancing, but there are still lots of things you can do to…

Writing Opportunities March 2019

Image from Canva free stock images Yirra Yaakin Writers’ Group “Yirra Yaakin invites established and aspiring Aboriginal playwrights to participate in an intensive playwriting program that guides writers through craft and writing sessions aimed at turning ideas into scripts. At the culmination of the workshop program, six writers are selected for one-on-one assistance to help them prepare…

Interview: Hadley Wickham, author of ‘My Bed is a Blackhole’

Interview with Hadley Wickham, emerging author of My Bed is a Blackhole, by Shelley Carter When I was first introduced to emerging Perth author Hadley Wickham, I was more than intrigued. A Google search gleaned nothing more than a sample of her debut novel, and a single interview. I was put into contact with her through…

Freelance Writing series part 5: Setting Rates, Quoting and Invoicing

Image from Canva Free Stock Images Article by Jess Gately Here we are at part 5, and we still haven’t even started writing yet! And sadly, there’s still lots to do before you do start writing. In this post we look at the finance side of things like quoting and pricing structures. For some of you keeping…

Illustrated Books aren’t just for Children, by Kate Lomas Glendenning

I find books memorable for different reasons. These reasons range from characters, to plot, or to setting; however, one endearing reason a book can be memorable to me is because of its illustrations. Illustrations are not just for children’s books. Drawings can not only aid imagery but also create a deeper meaning. Which books are…

Is Your Idea Worth It? By Jess Rae

How to tell what story is worth writing.  I know as a writer I always have so many ideas but I never have any clue which idea to run with; I don’t know about you but I’m not usually confident in myself enough to make that decision. Well I’m here to tell you there are…

Issue 25 is here!

It’s a new year and we’re happy to be presenting issue #25 of the Underground Writers zine, featuring more fantastic work by a selection of creative writers from around Australia. Our work this issue includes poetry from Ion Corcos, Jasmin Seabrook-Benson, Scott-Patrick Mitchell, and Wendy Lichtenberg. Our short stories comes from Christos Sevastidis and Paul…

Freelance Writing series part 4: Business Set-up

Image from Canva Free Stock Images As you’ve seen in the previous posts, there’s a lot more to freelance writing than just writing. Setting up your business correctly is the first and possibly most important step to ensuring your success as you step out into the freelance world. In this post we’ll  cover the set-up of some…

How to Create Fully Developed Fictional Characters, by Kate Lomas Glendenning

Image from Canva free stock images As a reader, it is incredibly frustrating to immerse yourself within a book with underdeveloped characters; as a writer, this flop is devastating. It is with frustration I must confess that there is no exact formula to create developed characters. Advice on the subject is varied and often contradicts itself, so…

Review: Blue in the Red House by Sarah Madden, by Shelley Carter

Title: Blue in the Red House Author: Sarah Madden Genre: Magical Realism & Memoir Favourite Part: When Ms. De Beer and Me-Two meet for the first time Favourite Quote: “She had been poised to triumph, to step out into the world with new resolve and the battle won, but now she was sucked back into…

Review: Flight Risk by Michael McGuire, by Fred Woolhouse

Title: Flight Risk Author: Michael McGuire Genre: spy thriller Favourite Part: Ted finally meets the individuals behind the terror attacks Favourite Quote: “No doubt plenty of people think the work I do is a bit murky, a bit underhand, maybe even lacking in ethics and morality. But there is a certain honesty in my dishonesty”…

Writing Opportunities January 2019

Image from Canva free stock images Nakata Brophy Short Fiction and Poetry Prize for Young Indigenous Writers The prize will be awarded to the best short story by an Indigenous writer who is 30 years or younger at the closing date of the competition. Overland ‘future sex’ edition Overland are currently seeking submissions for a special…

What We Learnt in 2018

2018 was a big year for learning, and our editors were happy to discuss and share as much as they could. This post pulls together everything we learnt over the year about writing, reading and publishing.  Take a look and check out the posts you may have missed or the ones you might want to…

Aussie Titles Reviewed in 2018

 2018 was a huge year for reviews with our editors covering a range of genres, themes and authors. Take a trip down memory lane to see all the great Aussie titles we reviewed in 2018!   Defying Doomsday edited by Tsana Dolichva and Holly Kench, reviewed by Jemimah Halbert Brewster Grace Beside Me by Sue…

9 Audiobooks to add to your 2019 TBR, by Shelley Carter

Featured image from Canva free stock images As someone who spends a decent amount of time commuting to work each week, audiobooks have been my saviour when it comes to smashing out my Goodreads goal and feeling like I haven’t just wasted an hour sitting in traffic. While some people consider audiobooks to not be…

3 things to consider when choosing books for your loved ones this Christmas

Have you ever heard of Jolabokaflod, the Icelandic tradition of giving books on Christmas Eve? Translated to ‘The Christmas Book Flood’, Icelanders spend months pouring over book catalogues in the lead up to Christmas before exchanging books and chocolate on Christmas Eve and spending the night reading together by a cosy fire. Ok so the…

Writing Opportunities for December 2018

Earth Island Journal – currently open for article submissions We cover the entire spectrum of environmental issues, including, wildlife and lands conservation; innovations in science and technology; public policy and the politics of environmental protection; climate and energy; animal rights; public health; environmental justice and cultural survival; and environmentally related film, music, and books. ACMI…