Trust Me, I'm a Storyteller

June 9, 2015

Free the Children June 15 Day of Action

The Australian Coalition to End Immigration Detention of Children  (ACEIDC) is coordinating a National Day of Action on Monday June 15th 2015 across Australia, as part of #refugeeweek2015.

Add your voice. All children deserve to have their rights protected and promoted. Only by putting an END to immigration detention of children, can we ensure that the human rights of children fleeing persecution are upheld. Let’s #Freethechildren.

Joanne McCarthy in Today’s Newcastle Herald

My priority is to get children out of detention. Whether it’s our Indigenous youth or the children of refugees they need help not more punishment. Whether you agree with stopping the boats or not, the children shouldn’t be punished — it’s as disgraceful as charging children with their own neglect in Australia. The Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Abuse means there is no longer the pretence of ignorance — we know only too well what these children will suffer for the rest of their lives. Stop the Detention of Children.

In case you don’t know about the horrific treatment of children who have already experienced and seen more than any child should have, here is a Submission to clarify:

Submission:
Free the Children National Day of Action

Free the Children National Day of Action

Free the Children National Day of Action

 

Abuse survivors speak up for kids in detention in Newcastle Herald  Congratulations to Joanne McCarthy for expressing the problem so well in her article–and to the survivors who despite their own anguish choose to speak up on behalf of kids in detention. Graham Rundle: 44 A Tale of Survival

What you can do to help

227 asylum seeker children remain locked away in Australia’s immigration detention centers. The profound, negative impacts of indefinite detention on the health and development of children is comprehensively documented, and unacceptable.

Through this social media campaign, we can demonstrate that Australians care about the lives of all children, and that children should be accommodated with their families where possible, in the community, while their immigration status is being resolved.

Australia already has existing, workable and humane alternatives to locking innocent children up –  these should be expanded for all children rather than a select few.

Join us in calling on the Australian Government to cease the immigration detention of children, consistent with its obligations under the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Refugee Convention.

Add your voice. All children deserve to have their rights protected and promoted. Only by putting an END to immigration detention of children, can we ensure that the human rights of children fleeing persecution are upheld.

Let’s #Freethechildren.

November 25, 2014

The adventures and stories of Anu Kumar

If you love history, stories of adventure, murder, mysteries and curiosities then you will love these books by Anu Kumar.

I’ve had the good fortune to publish stories by Anu Kumar in two anthologies of stories from India and Australia. ‘Big Fish‘ in Alien Shores and ‘Two Women’ in Only Connect.

 

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Anu Kumar is presently studying for a masters in creative writing at the Vermont College of Fine Arts.  She also has a degree in history from Delhi University and has specialised in human resources management at the XLRI School of Business. She writes for children as well as for older readers, and her short stories have appeared in various magazines and anthologies.  Her stories have been twice awarded by the Commonwealth Broadcasting Association,  and also short-listed by  The Little Magazine. It Takes a Murder  is her third novel for older readers after Letters for Paul (Mapin 2006) and The Dollmakers’ Island (Gyaana, 2010). She lives in Maryland in the US with her husband and daughter.

Anu’s new book, How Did the Harappans Say Hello? And 16 Other Mysteries of History

published by Red Turtle and available at South Asia Books and Amazon for Kindle

Sneak preview Harappans2

I have a copy of this book  and can tell you that it’s full of fascinating researched history told in the form of engaging stories that children from all over the world will find absorbing. I also have Anu’s The Chola Adventure (Puffin) which takes young readers on many adventures. While these books are difficult to obtain in Australia, some are available as e-books – which are recommended for Australian readers. For those who prefer books in print they are available and I recommend South Asia Books for printed copies. Use the link above for a preview of this book.

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A new book for older readers was released in 2013 Inspector Angre and the Pizza Delivery Boy (Kindle Edition) is a work of crime fiction set in Mumbai, and featuring Inspector Angre. Preview of this book on Kindle and on itunes.

Inspector-Angre-Cover

Check out Anu Kumar’s other books for older readers, including: It Takes a Murder, Letters for Paul, The Doll Maker’s Island, In Search of Raja and Other Stories.

A range of Anu’s books and Reviews

Stories at Anu Kumar’s Blog

And her equally marvellous books for children such as the Atisa Series

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atisa_seven_wonders

 

 

Though postage is expensive to have books sent to Australia, I highly recommend Anu Kumar’s books and South Asia Books for their five star customer service.  Atisa and the Time Machine Adventures with Hieun Tsang , Thanks, Ken.

 MythQuest Series at Amazon – though I haven’t had a chance to read this series yet, it looks terrific. I would love to hear from others who have read Anu’s books.

Images copyright Anu Kumar, please seek permission before using.

January 4, 2013

Viewpoint, It Takes a Murder and Australian Women Writers’ Challenge 2013

Viewpoint Review

Alien Shores has also been reviewed by Mario La Marca in the current issue of Viewpoint the prestigious journal for Young Adult readers, writers and publishers, as well as High School teachers and librarians.

Anu Kumar It takes a Murder

It Takes a Murder by Anu Kumar, cover courtesy Amazon.com

It Takes a Murder

Anu Kumar whose story ‘Big Fish’ appears in Alien Shores has a new novel out:

Anu Kumar’s novel “It Takes a Murder” is now in widespread American distribution… In Kindle format
http://www.amazon.com/It-Takes-a-Murder-ebook/dp/B00AG1GQLU

And you can buy the paperback from Biblio and other sources….

 

Australian Women Writers Challenge 2013

Marisa Wikramanayake has “signed up for the Australian Women Writers Challenge for 2013 to read, review and promote Australian female authors. If you can recommend a few titles (even your own) that would be great…”

Drop in on the Australian Women Writers Challenge and suggest a book for review, or take the challenge to read and review yourself.

Marisa Wikramanayake writes that: the authors “must be Australian and female. The genres I read are literary fiction, crime fiction, non-fiction and occasionally science fiction and fantasy”.

http://marisa.com.au/the-australian-women-writers-challenge-2013/?fb_source=pubv1

December 20, 2012

Compliments of the Season, as Sunil Badami reviews “Alien Shores”

Meenakshi and I bring you the latest review of  Alien Shores by Sunil Badami published in Mascara Literary Review.

 Sunil’s review is particularly knowledgeable and culturally sensitive for which we thank him.

As Simone Lazaroo mentions in ‘Not just another Migrant Story1, we need reviewers with “cultural sensitivity to give Asian-Australian literary writers of merit a go … we also need more critics knowledgeable of the great diversity of Asian-Australian cultures to review those writers’ work in ‘mainstream’ newspapers and magazines, not just academic journals and books. One can only hope that Asian-Australian literature will be reviewed more often in more informed ways in such newspapers and magazines, rather than according to culturally inappropriate criteria”.

Sunil’s review achieves all this and more.

You can readSunil Badami reviews Alien Shores Ed Sharon Rundle & Meenakshi Bharat at Mascara Literary Review

http://mascarareview.com/sunil-badami-reviews-alien-shores/

 

Andrew Y M Kwong (centre) with Julia Mackay-Koelen, Meenakshi Bharat, Sharon Rundle and Michelle Cahill at the Central Coast launch of 'Alien Shores'.

Andrew Y M Kwong (centre) with Julia Mackay-Koelen, Meenakshi Bharat, Sharon Rundle and Michelle Cahill at the Central Coast launch of ‘Alien Shores’.

Abdul, Linda and Sharon at Hughenden Launch

Abdul, Linda and Sharon at Hughenden Launch

 

 

Wishing you all Compliments of the Season, a very Merry Christmas, a safe and happy holiday and

a brilliant New Year in 2013!

Xmas Tree

1Lazaroo, Simone. 2008, ‘Not just another Migrant Story’, Australian Humanities Review, Issue 45. ANU Press.

October 29, 2012

Week-end Book Review: Ships in the Field by Susanne Gervay and Anna Pignataro

Ships in the Field

Susanne Gervay and Anna Pignataro launch “Ships in the Field”.

A sensitive and intelligent review of Susanne Gervay’s picture book ‘Ships in the Field‘. It will make an excellent Christmas present for children.

Week-end Book Review by Marjorie Coughlan: Ships in the Field by Susanne Gervay and Anna Pignataro.

Alien Shores

Alien Shores, Brass Monkey Books. Short stories.

 

is going to reprint. Congratulations to all involved. Please pass the word to your book clubs, Good Reads, blogsnetworks, newsrooms, FaceBook and on your websites.

Alien Shores would also make a welcome Diwali, Christmas or end-0f-year present. Order ‘Ships in the Field’ and ‘Alien Shores’ from your  book shop or online.

Coop Bookshop Blog review of Alien Shores by Manisha Amin

September 25, 2012

Alien Shores & AILIF Podcasts and Reports

Two Radio Podcasts from SBS Radio this week and a podcast from ABC Radio National.

Two are interviews about Alien Shores, tales of refugees and asylum seekers – stories from Australia and the Indian subcontinent. The other is about Poet Prabodh Parikh in Sydney.

SBS Hindi Radio

Alien Shores

An exclusive interview with the editors of ‘Alien Shores’, Meenakshi Bharat and Sharon Rundle. Interview by Devaki Monani, SBS Hindi Radio.

http://www.sbs.com.au/yourlanguage/hindi/highlight/page/id/231085/t/Alien-Shores/in/english

ABC Radio National Books and Arts Daily Interview. Michael Cathcart with Susanne Gervay and Sharon Rundle.

http://www.abc.net.au/radionational/programs/booksandartsdaily/alien-shores/4025364

Article in Indian Herald (online and print editions)

http://indianherald.com.au/epaper/aug2012/?utm_source=Rohit+Contacts&utm_campaign=6e01d9b6cc-August2012_Epaper&utm_medium=email#/40/

An article was published in IndianLink NATIONAL EDITION June (1) 2012 p17 (Online and Print editions).

SBS Gujarati

Poet Prabodh Parikh in Sydney

Gujarati poet, short fiction writer and visual artist Shri Probodh Parikh was in Sydney to attend Australia India Literatures International Forum. His book of poems, Kaunsman has been awarded the Gujarati Sahitya Akademi Award and the G F Saraf Award for Best Gujarati Book.

Vaidehi Mehta talked to him about his love for poetry, Philosophy and his attraction and connection to the Bangla language.

http://www.sbs.com.au/yourlanguage/gujarati/highlight/page/id/232601/t/Poet-Prabodh-Parikh-in-Sydney/in/english

Newspaper reports:

The making and mastering of myths

Renowned writer/actor Girish Karnad speaks at an Australia-India writers’ fest. PRIYADARSHINI reports in IndianLink.

http://www.indianlink.com.au/front-page/the-making-and-mastering-of-myths/

A full report of the Australia India Literatures International Forum at the State Library NSW is published in  The Indian Herald.

http://indianherald.com.au/australian-news/australia-india-literatures-international-forum-a-great-success/2232/

More authors in the Media

Also, Watch out for Susanne Gervay on Channel Seven ‘Today Tonight’ soon.

Susanne Gervay and Deb Abela speak  about ghost stories in the The Age newspaper, September 23.

http://www.theage.com.au/entertainment/books/stories-that-go-bump-in-the-night-20120922-26dfa.html

September 10, 2012

Australia-India Literatures International Forum a resounding success!

The Australia-India Literatures International Forum held at the State Library of NSW from 4 – 6 September, as promised, generated ‘lively discussions from passionate speakers’.

AILIF was officially opened by the Consul-General of India in Sydney, Mr Arun Kumar Goel and it brought together readers, writers, translators, editors, agents and publishers from Australia and the Indian subcontinent.

Mahmood Farooqui skilfully demonstrated Dastangoi, the revival of the art of telling Dastans or epic stories of adventure, magic and warfare by reciting or reading aloud. Sudesh Mishra and Vijay Mishra explored the creativity of Indians who were brought to sugar cane plantations in Fiji as indentured labour in the late nineteenth-century. Prabodh Parikh presented Art and the Writer: Rabindranath Tagore’s 2000 paintings.

Seven panels over the three days discussed motivation to write; the struggle against injustice and inequality; the importance of local languages and dialects; alienation from land, animals and tradition; storytelling as protest; the important role that writers have in telling the truth; the power of myth and legend in writing and storytelling. Mamang Dai, Inez Baranay, Subhash Jaireth, Girish Karnad, Malcolm Knox, Manisha Jolie Amin, Roanna Gonsalves, Bem Le Hunte, Michelle de Kretser, Suneeta Peres da Costa, N S Madhavan, Uday Prakash, Christopher Raja, Aashish Kaul and Kunal Sharma spoke about crossing borders, a sense of place, dislocation, the home of the imagination, place as a construct, ‘fossilised memory’, ‘rearranged identity’, ‘languages as legitimisation’ and ‘what is Indian anyway’?

Highlights included: gut-wrenching poems by Ali Cobby Eckermann, from her collection little bit long time, which left the audience stunned and lingered on in the mind. Alexis Wright bringing to our attention the importance of ancient lore, the voice of the Elders, temporal rather than linear stories, before reading from Carpentaria. Gogu Shyamala, Dalit feminist and Telangana activist. C S Lakshmi (Ambai), feminist and activist, who revealed her take on the world and her experiences with wit and humour. All of which helped to create a deeper understanding of the challenges regularly encountered.

C S Lakshmi (Ambai) and Gogu Shyamala in Sydney

Award winning poets Judith Beveridge, Michelle Cahill, Kynpham Sing Nongkynrih and Prabodh Parikh spoke about the poetic imagination and treated the audience to their strong and subversive poems.

The final panel session of editors, translators and publishers explained the practical hurdles of publishing books in regional languages and in finding skilled translators; as well as the responsibility of editing and publishing stories in localised variations of english in literature. Kabita Dhara, publisher at Brass Monkey Books Australia, Ivor Indyk from Giramondo Press, Mita Kapur author and CEO of Siyahi, R Sivapriya Managing Editor of Translations and Classics Penguin Books India and Sharon Rundle who has co-edited Indo-Australian books for Picador (Australia, India) and Brass Monkey Books emphasised the importance of publishing transnational writing and translations.

The State Library NSW book shop stocked books by the various speakers, including ‘Alien Shores’ and ‘Fear Factor Terror Incognito’. It was quite a thrill to see them on display there.

“Alien Shores” and “Fear Factor Terror Incognito” in the State Library NSW book shop!

Huge congratulations to the organisers, Mridula Nath Chakraborty and Anthony Uhlmann Director of the University of Western Sydney Writing and research Centre; and the State Library of NSW, for this essential and welcome initiative.

AILIF was supported by the Australian Government through the Australia-India Council and the Australia Council; Copyright Agency Ltd Cultural Fund; Australia India Institute; State Library of NSW; The Taj Foundation.

A full report is published in the current issue of The Indian Herald.

August 22, 2012

Australia India Literatures International Forum September 2012

ALIF Program 2012

Australia-India Literatures International Forum

4th-6th September 2012

State Library of New South Wales

Metcalfe Auditorium.

(entrance via Macquarie Street)

Sydney

© Image shown above Copyright owned by Wikicommons

 

Don’t miss this very special event! This exciting forum will generate lively discussions from passionate speakers. An event of such potential and ambition has not been undertaken in this region before.

The Australia-India Literatures International Forum brings together writers from the

regional literatures of India with indigenous and multicultural writers of Australia.

The Forum will take the form of seven panel sessions and three special

presentations, which are all open to the public to attend.

 

Each panel comprises Australian and Indian delegates, who will make a short presentation each, followed by audience discussion moderated by the Chair.

 

The three special sessions explore the connection of writing

with performance, art and indenture.

Tuesday 4th September

4 pm: Special Presentation:

Dastangoi.

Mahmood Farooqui

The word Dastangoi refers to the art of storytelling; it is a compound of two Persian words Dastan and goi that means to tell a story.

 

Wednesday 5th September

12 noon: Special Presentation:

Travelling languages/evolving cultures across the Pacific Ocean.

Sudesh Mishra and Vijay Mishra

In the late nineteenth-century, Indians were brought to Fiji as indentured labour to work on sugar cane plantations. This

free-flowing conversation explores the subject of indenture/girmitiya and creativity.

4:30 pm: Special Presentation:

Art and the Writer.

Prabodh Parikh:

Rabindranath Tagore’s 2000 paintings

The first non-European Nobel Laureate, Rabindranath Tagore, was also a self-taught artist who started painting at age 67.

Within 15 years, Tagore had completed over 3000 paintings, which have since become part of India’s national treasure.

Forum Panellists include: Alexis Wright, Sharan Kumar Limbale, Gogu Shyamala, Ali Cobby Eckermann, Inez Baranay, Mamang Dai, Bem le Hunte, C S Lakshmi (Ambai), Subhash Jaireth, Nicholas Jose, Girish Karnad, Malcolm Knox, Suneeta Peres da Costa, Michelle de Kretser, N S Madhavan, Uday Prakash, Manisha Jolie Amin, Roanna Gonsalves, Aashish Kaul, Chris Raja and Kunal Sharma, Kabita Dhara, Ivor Indyk, Mita Kapur, R Sivapriya and Sharon Rundle.

 Panel Chairs: Peter Minter, Christopher Cyrill, Vijay Mishra, Paul Sharrad,  Mita Kapur, Pam Newton, Ivor Indyk, Michael Wilding and R Sivapriya.

 Speakers:  Mridula Nath Chakraborty, Anthony Uhlmann Director Writing & Society Research Centre, University of Western Sydney

 

For full program and information on the participating writers,

see our website: http://www.uws.edu.au/india

To purchase tickets to attend any of the Australia-India Literatures

International Forum public events, please go to:

http://www.sl.nsw.gov.au/events/events_talks/index.html

or contact the State Library of NSW Bookings line: (02) 9273 1770

or Email: bookings@sl.nsw.gov.au

I look forward to seeing you there,

Sharon

August 17, 2012

Indian Australian Friendship Fair 2012 & Special Indian Herald Issue

Indian Australian Friendship Fair 2012

Fun for all the family. Dance, Music, Masti – Food Stalls, Kid’s Rides, Camel Rides and many more activities.

Come along and join the Indian community for a family fun day.

United Indian Association Inc (UIA) presents

the biggest Indian Fair in Sydney

on Sunday August 19, 2012

at Sydney Olympic Park

Edwin Flack Ave, Homebush, NSW, 2140, Australia

Cost: $7 entry

 

Phone: 0411 259 978 0469 325 981

Organizer: United Indian Association Inc

Phone: President Amarinder Bajwa 0421 998 458

http://www.indiandownunder.com.au/event/uia-presents-the-biggest-indian-fair-in-sydney/

Special Big Issue of the Indian Herald will be published on August 18 and distributed at the Indian Australian Friendship Fair 2012 on August 19.

Alien Shores tales of Refugees and Asylum Seekers is featured in a two-page spread. Thanks, Rohit Revo (Editor) it’s much appreciated.

Alien Shores
Eds. Sharon Rundle & Meenakshi Bharat
published Brass Monkey Books 2012

July 23, 2012

First Night of ‘Frivolities at Five Ways’

Frivolities at Five Ways is a very entertaining way to spend an evening.

These seven short plays are guaranteed to have you laughing at the way the characters see the world.

I went along to the first night of this season of short plays to join Linda Jaivin, Susanne Gervay and Linda’s friends Alexander, Ahmed, Lesley, Mandy, Rosemary and Simon. It was a lively table with wine, cheese and chatter—but all eyes and ears were on the performers as soon as the Frivolities began.

I loved Linda Jaivin’s play Lucky to Have Them, a hilarious monologue set in a Double Bay hairdressing salon, where a woman unloads her neurotic thoughts and trivial troubles onto her long-suffering stylist; but is so involved in her problems that she fails to see he has left the room. Linda tells me it was inspired by an article that she once read about a celebrity hairdresser in Double Bay and the women who went to him. Emma Harris gives a very amusing and expressive performance as a woman of privilege who feels much put-upon by the demands and antics of family and friends.

All of the plays had the audience chuckling.They are all well written with sterling performances from the actors. Another highlight for me was the witty Tumble Tots,  written by Kate Toon, which really hit the mark as a comment on ‘helicopter’ mums who compete to be the most socially aware and environmentally conscious in their neighbourhood. A touch of pathos amid the many laugh-out-loud moments. Nicola Furst and Corinne Marie were superb in performing this very topical play.

Congratulations to the Writers: Linda Jaivin, Kate Toon, Mark Harvey, Pete Malicki, Malcolm Frawley;    Actors: Nicola Furst, Corinne Marie, Grace Rouvray, Emma Harris, Claire Gandy, David Woodland, Steven McGrath; Directors: Malcolm Frawley, Lewis Scamozzi, Ingrid Yin Hu; and to Nicola Furst producer and organiser–and to furst class productions.

Finally, congratulations to Susanne Gervay who won a raffle prize—looking forward to seeing the ‘love those lashes’ fluttering.

The venue is St George Church in Paddington, and it’s showtime every Saturday night from 21 July through 25 August. Bookings at Moshtix.

First Night at Frivolities at Five-Ways.

 Linda’ story ‘Karim’ is published in Alien Shores, tales of Refugees and Asylum Seekers. Published Brass Monkey Books, May 2012.

Her latest book is A Most Immoral Woman 

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