Trust Me, I'm a Storyteller

September 17, 2015

Writers in the Park, Centennial Park, Sydney. Sunday 27th September 10 am

Great new event for book lovers! Kids and adults alike are welcome to the inaugural and free

Writers in the Park logo

 Writers in the Park

at The Residences Centennial Park

on Sunday 27th September, 2015. 10 am start.

Free entry to the Writers in the Park events

Hosted by The Hughenden​ Boutique Hotel and The Residences Centennial Park

A chance to hear and meet authors and illustrators in one of the most scenic spots in Sydney

Fabulous food, fantastic books and great coffee on sale will make the day perfect, check out the links.

Full day program each for adults and for children with authors, illustrators, cartoonists, journalists, publishers, bookseller and books.

Centennial Parklands

Here’s the Program

& The Writers and Illustrators

including Jessica Rowe, Joanne McCarthy, Annabel Morely, Sunil Badami, Libby Hathorn, P M Newton, Deborah Abela, Anne Schofield, Bem Le Hunte, Lisa Heidke, Hazel Edwards, Susanne Gervay,  Susanna Freymark, Graham Rundle, Michael Parker, Philip Wilcox, Joanne Fedler,  Pamela Cook, Helen O’Dare, Robyn Arrowsmith, Maria Katsonis, Shelley Kenisberg, Reverend Gilmore, Rick Raftos, Shona Martyn and  Jane Curry.

Eastside Radio 89.7FM is setting up live podcast. See also: http://eastsidefm.org/writers-in-the-park-festival/

#‎SimonMarnie‬ from 702 ABC Sydney is interviewing Sunil Badami on Sunday morning on ABC702 radio.- listen in.

Susan Wyndam’s column in Saturday’s Sydney Morning Herald

Writers in the Park poster

Centennial Parklands – Writers in the Park

Writers in the Park website

Writers in the Park Facebook Page

#‎writepark‬

If you’re travelling to Sydney, why not stay at the Hughenden Hotel, 14 Queen Street Woollahra.

The Hughenden melds heritage with modern conveniences to meet individual needs. From cosy rooms to the Manor Suite, family apartments to pet-friendly rooms – with complimentary breakfast, complimentary wi-fi, guest lounge, dining, concierge services and function rooms.
Located at the crossroads of historic Woollahra and Paddington, and surrounded by designer fashion boutiques, restaurants, cafes, The Hughenden is opposite Centennial Parklands and in close proximity to the SCG, Allianz Stadium, the Entertainment Quarter, with easy access to the city and Bondi Beach.
Or if you’re really feeling like a treat have a look at the Residences Centennial Park.

The Residences Centennial Parkland

The Hughenden on Facebook

The Residences Centennial Park on Facebook

July 2, 2014

Forty-Four, a tale of survival – New book release

 

 

New Book Release

44

Forty-Four, A Tale of Survival,

by Graham Rundle

44BookCoverFiveMile

cover photo courtesy The Five Mile Press and Blue Cork

Published by The Five Mile Press

Cover by Luke Causby, Blue Cork

A Must-Read and it’s in book shops now!

Seven-year-old Graham Rundle was excited to learn he was going for a holiday at a place where he’d have a chance to play with lots of other boys. A few days later, his father dropped him off at Eden Park, a Salvation Army boys’ home outside Adelaide in South Australia.

As soon as his father left, Graham’s few possessions were taken away and he was given old clothes to wear. From now on, he was told, he’d be known around the home simply by his number, ‘44’. When he pleaded to go home, he was told that nobody wanted to take him. He’d been abandoned by his family – even, it seemed, by the grandmother he loved.

This book vividly portrays what happened to Graham over the eight years he spent at Eden Park, living in fear of abuse by his peers and by the men who were supposed to care for him. It captures his extraordinary resilience, determination and humour, and his debt to the loving nana who tracked him down against the odds and offered him hope in the midst of hell.

This extraordinary book contrasts the dark moments of unbelievable depravity with some of the sweetest and most innocent acts of kindness. As well as portraying life in the home, Graham writes of his taste of freedom at high school and at Indigenous camps at the Coorong, and of his time spent with his beloved, lifesaving Nana.

• An extraordinary tale of resilience, determination and humour.
• A ten-year legal battle resulted in a long jail sentence for one of the abusers.

Congratulations, Graham Rundle

Media

The Sun Herald and Sydney Morning Herald 3 Page article (also in print editions)

“Interview: Salvation Army victim Graham Rundle”

Joanne McCarthy. July 20, 2014 – 12:15A

“Reporter Joanne McCarthy won journalism’s highest prize – the Gold Walkley – in 2013 for her series of articles on sex abuse that helped spark the royal commission” SMH.

Also in Newcastle Herald (print and online):

“A victims nightmare in the ‘care’ of the Salvation Army”

http://www.theherald.com.au/story/2423443/a-victims-nightmare-in-the-care-of-the-salvation-army/?cs=12

More Media interviews, articles and reviews

Radio

ABC Blog interview with Richard Stubbs audio link
ABC Newcastle 1233 with Carol Duncan
The Wire

Print

‘Lifestyle’, Daily Telegraph 13 August 2014

“REMEMBER WHEN … Running away from brutality”
Graham Rundle
Copyright 2014 News Ltd. All Rights Reserved

The Land July 20, 2014
Town & Country Magazine August 16
Mccarthy Jan 20, 2014 article
Illawarra Mercury
Cessnock Advertiser
Goulburn press
Goondiwindi Argus July 19, 2014, noon

Herald Sun Review

Margaret Linley’s review (from The Geelong Advertiser) was picked up and run by The Gold Coast Bulletin, Townsville Eye, and Cairns Eye.

What readers are saying:

I just finished 44. I cried and could not understand the cruelty on many levels – from the abandonment by Graham’s father to the relentless cruelty of Ellis and those other boys. I loved the Cook. Nanna was beautiful. However as I finished the book, the strongest impression was the enormous capacity of Graham to survive and to still have values of care for others. Bring back treats and stories for the other desperate little boys, relate to the Jewish survivor, squash food between pages to the boy in the lock-up. However it is survival and that capacity to go on and have a valuable life that is breathtaking. Huge congratulations on an epic journey. Sydney, NSW

It’s a Winner! Sydney NSW

Finished reading in one go. Wrought with pain, yet so true. It takes courage to face truth. And, you have done it. I am sure your heartrending tale will resonate in many sensitive hearts, from far and wide, irrespective of geography, cultures, class or creed. Number 44’s survival will certainly hold out hope to many. Congratulations for the remarkable book you have written. Mumbai, India.

This is truly ‘awe-some.’ Not in the superficial sense. Literally. In the middle of 44. Very disturbing. Very starkly and simply narrated. The horror of the experience and the one sustaining thread of love for Nana very poignantly captured. A great achievement, gritty and courageous. New Delhi, India.

I’m in tears as I write to you. I literally just finished the book. I basically read 99% today. I couldn’t put it down. The little things. Like his love for animals & little gifts & special things he cherished. All the way through I thought, why won’t his Nana keep him? Then it all comes to light. God I can’t stop thinking about so much that I read. The book had impact. It’s so well written. Kulnura, NSW.

My congratulations – it was a compelling read! Hunter Valley, NSW

I wanted to put my arms around that frightened little boy and I was very relieved each time you came to visit your dear Nanna and had a break from that awful place. Millfield, NSW

44 is terrific @Grahamrundle44 has an amazingly detailed memory. He makes a lot of simple mundane things interesting. I read 44 very quickly, Twitter Frances Jones’ Blog

Compulsive reading. Holgate NSW

Big dents of impact on us. Copacabana, NSW

Comments on Susan Gervay’s Blog

Congratulations to Graham for all the hard work and emotions he has invested in, Wamberal, NSW

44bookcover Trudy

cover photo courtesy Trudy Bright Photography (c) with permission

44backcoverTrudy

cover photo courtesy Trudy Bright Photography (c) with permission

Inset photo by Trudy Bright Photography

Look for Forty Four A Tale of Survival on the True Crime or Biography shelves of these shops:

Dymocks – Sydney and suburban shops, Belconnen, Canberra, Nowra and in Melbourne; and online

Abbeys Books, Sydney
Angus & Robertson
Readings
Co-op Online Book Shop

David Jones Stores

Big W

KMart Stores

Better Read
Booktopia
Boomerang Books
Ballarat Books
Riverbend
Fishpond

Bookworld

Book Depository

Atomic Books

Robinsons Bookshop
Kindle Version at Amazon
Apple iBook

iTunes/Apple

Barnes & Noble

Available soon in UK and Europe (August 1).

Sainsburys.co.uk

Senscritique.com

 

Graham Rundle can be contacted through his agent, Brian Cook at The Authors’ Agent

The Five Mile Press

Frances Jones Blog

Trudy Bright Photography

There are still many more survivors fighting for justice, Please also follow Aletha at White Shield Appeal and Aletha’s blog Lewis Blayse.net for latest developments and to support their campaign.

April 22, 2014

Only Connect: Short fiction about Technology and Us

Only Connect: Short fiction about Technology and Us from Australia and the Indian Subcontinent

has just been released and is in book shops now!

oc full cover final2

Thank you to all our authors from Australia and the Indian subcontinent who have contributed to this exciting volume of stories that include crime, mystery, murder, deceit, missed connections, relationships, romance and humour. Truly a wide range of responses to our theme of ‘technology and us’.

 

Published by Brass Monkey Books and available from book shops including Dymocks Melbourne, Readings, Dymocks Erina Fair Central Coast, UTS Co op Bookshop and  Lesley McKay Woollahra (who provided books for the launch), among others.

 Kerry Goldsworthy reviews Only Connect in the Sydney Morning Herald, Spectrum Books, In Short Fiction page.

Salma Shah reviews Only Connect in Indian Link, June 2014.

The launch held at The Hughenden Boutique Hotel in Woollahra on March 31

It was lovely to see so many of our authors at the launch. Thanks to Felicity Pulman, Julia Mackay-Koelen, Bem Le Hunte, Manisha Jolie Amin, Devika Brendon, Susanne Gervay, Roanna Gonsalves and our publisher Kabita Dhara at Brass Monkey Books for joining us in celebrating the release of our book of stories. Many thanks to our authors from the Subcontinent who sent best wishes and promises to be at the launch in spirit if not in body.

My sincere and heartfelt thanks to Co-Editor, Meenakshi Bharat, who is the better half of our editing partnership and who longed to be with us in person but this time it was not to be. Meenakshi now has all the photos and a sound recording from the launch.

 

Authors Only Connect launch

Sunil Badami, author and ABC radio presenter, bon vivant, raconteur, flaneur, did us the great honour of launching the book with a rousing and humorous speech that had us all spellbound. Sunil generously read from the stories of our contributing authors as he spoke about the significance of Only Connect. Sunil’s story ‘Leftovers’ is one of the highlights of the volume. While it may be unusual for one of the contributing authors to launch the book, we really could think of no-one better than Sunil.

 

Sharon Sunil Kabita

Sharon with Sunil Badami and Kabita Dhara

After enjoying Sunil’s speech and toasting to the success of Only Connect: short fiction about Technology and Us, we continued to party and celebrate its release. I know I had a marvellous time chatting to the authors, publisher and guests.

View Launch of Only Connect Short fiction about Technology and Us at the Hughenden Hotel
View Full Album

My heartfelt thanks to all at the Hughenden Hotel for sponsoring the launch and thanks especially to Jamie and to Ryan Power who gave so generously of their time to set it all up; and to Deidre Stein who designed the poster, invitations and champagne vouchers for our launch. All the Hughenden staff went out of their way to take care of guests who attended the launch and those who stayed at the hotel for the weekend. We all noticed and appreciated it. And last but not least thanks to Vincent’s Bar and Restaurant for providing the champagne and for welcoming our guests who booked for lunch.

 

SBS Hindi Kumud Merani interviews Meenakshi Bharat and Sharon Rundle about Only Connect: Short Fiction about Technology and Us.

For more information, please see the Brass Monkey Books Press Release:

Only Connect Press_Release with booksellers

March 15, 2014

God’s Donkey Brisbane Launch

God’s Donkey

by Peter Gale

Gods Donkey Gale Cover

The true story of Sister Mary Theodore OAM and Mithra

 was launched in Brisbane by Jennifer Byrne

Jennifer Byrne, Peter Gale and Sister Theodore's niece, Helen Mahoney at the Brisbane launch.

Jennifer Byrne, Peter Gale and Sister Theodore’s niece, Helen Mahoney at the Brisbane launch.

The speech from Qld Parliament following the launch (reproduced here with authorisation from Peter Gale).

 

Sister Mary Theodore

Ms TRAD (South Brisbane-ALP) (9.07 pm): I rise to speak this evening in order to acknowledge a woman of great strengths, Sister Mary Theodore. Born on Brisbane’s south side, Sister Theodore was one of eight children in a Lebanese family. At just 17 years of age she had already chosen what path she would take in life and by the time she was 24, Sister Theodore completed her training with the church and was immediately posted to India. For over 60 years this was her home and it was where she founded Mithra, an organisation in the city of Chennai that is dedicated to educating and rehabilitating children with a disability, particularly those from the poorest sections of the community.

 

With all that she did, Sister Theodore had a funny way of describing her work. She would commonly refer to herself as ‘God’s donkey’. She would say, ‘That animal is me. That donkey knows how to serve. It was a donkey that carried Christ into Jerusalem. It is a simple creature but it knows when to resist and when to dig in its toes and be stubborn and fight.’

 

Dr Peter Gale at the University of South Australia has published a biographical account of Sister Theodore’s life and has appropriately titled it God’s Donkey. On 9 February I attended the book launch, which was presided over by Jennifer Byrne. By learning about why she chose that life-by understanding all that she did under such challenging circumstances-I am of the view that Sister Theodore’s story proved this simple point: just because you come from somewhere small like Brisbane does not mean you cannot achieve big things.

 

Sister Theodore strengthened Australia’s ties with some of India’s most vulnerable by creating an exchange program that brought Australian students to Mithra so they could help provide a helping hand. She strengthened these ties that bind us by proving to those children that we see them, that we care for them and that we have not forgotten about them when so many others have, and they loved her for that.

 

She was not Sister Theodore to them, she was ‘Mother’. It is people like her who give us heart. On 7 December 2012 she passed away after 86 years. ‘The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away.’ Sister Theodore may no longer be with us, but we remember her in this book, in this world and in this place. She will forever be engrained in our past, and whether it is through the people that she helped and loved in Chennai, and particularly in Mithra, or those she inspired in South Brisbane, the work and vision of Sister Theodore will carry on into the future, and that is for certain.

 God’s Donkey was also launched on 15th January 2014 at 11.00am in the Divine Mercy Auditorium, Don Alberione Center, Mithra Campus.

God’s Donkey is published by Wakefield Press and available at http://www.wakefieldpress.com.au/product.php?productid=1150&cat=0&page=&featured=Y

I was fortunate enough to be at the Indian Association for the Study of Australia Conference in Kerala, India, where Peter Gale spoke about Sister Theodore and Mithra.

20140124_133354

I hear the book is selling well, so be sure to order your copy from Wakefield Press; or ask for it in your local bookshop.

October 6, 2013

A COUNTRY TOO FAR – SPECIAL FUNDRAISER PANEL EVENT

Following in the footsteps of ‘Alien Shores‘ comes another anthology on the theme of the dispossessed and asylum seekers.

There are two  Sydney events celebrating  the publication of A Country Too Far one the launch/event at Gleebooks on the 5th November and the other Unsafe Haven is the award winning work of Abdul Karim, ex-refugee, writer and social worker.

A COUNTRY TOO FAR – SPECIAL FUNDRAISER PANEL EVENT

 A Country Too Far cover

Panel: Rosie Scott, Gail Jones and Debra Adelaide, chaired by Tom Keneally

One of the central moral issues of our time is the question of asylum seekers, arguably the most controversial subject in Australia today.

In this landmark anthology, twenty-seven of Australia’s finest writers have focused their intelligence and creativity on the theme of the dispossessed, bringing a whole new perspective of depth and truthfulness to what has become a fraught, distorted war of words. This anthology confirms that the experience of seeking asylum – the journeys of escape from death, starvation, poverty or terror to an imagined paradise – is part of the Australian mindset and deeply embedded in our culture and personal histories.

A Country Too Far is a tour de force of stunning fiction, memoir, poetry and essays. Edited by award-winning writers Rosie Scott and Thomas Keneally, and featuring contributors including Anna Funder, Christos Tsiolkas, Elliot Perlman, Gail Jones, Raimond Gaita, Les Murray, Rodney Hall and Geraldine Brooks, this rich anthology is by turns thoughtful, fierce, evocative, lyrical and moving, and always extraordinarily powerful.

A Country Too Far makes an indispensable contribution to the national debate.

Please join the editors and contributors to celebrate the publication of this timely and important new anthology.

When: Tuesday November 5, 6 for 6:30pm

Venue: Gleebooks, 49 Glebe Point Rd, Glebe

Cost: $10 full price/$7 concession/free gleeclub

Bookings essential: phone (02) 9660 2333 or online

This is a fundraising event – all profits from book sales on the night will go to the Bridge for Asylum Seekers Foundation.

Fairfield City Museum & Gallery invites you

Unsafe Haven

On Thursday 31st October at 6pm

Unsafe Haven is the award winning work of Abdul Karim, ex-refugee, writer and social worker.

To be launched by Phil Glendenning, President of the Refugee Council of Australia and Director of the Edmund Rice Centre

The new publication, A Country Too Far, an anthology of works by Australia’s finest writers about refugees and asylum seekers, edited by Rosie Scott and Tom Keneally AO will also be launched in conjunction with the exhibition by writer  Gail Jones, Professor at UWS.

RSVP essential T: 9609 3993  by October  28th

Exhibition dates: 19 October – 7 December 2013

Fairfield City Museum & Gallery Open: Tues – Sat 10am – 4pm

FREE ADMISSION

Cnr. The Horsley Dr & Oxford St, Smithfield NSW 2164

www.livingmuseum.com.au Phone: 02 9609 3993 | Fax: 02 9757 4357 | Email: museumgall

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

June 16, 2012

‘Alien Shores’ launched

Huge thanks to all who participated in our successful launch of Alien Shores.

We managed not one but four launches for Alien Shores: Tales of Refugees and Asylum Seekers.

Edited by Meenakshi Bharat and Sharon Rundle this volume features stories from Australia and the Indian subcontinent by Linda Jaivin, Arnold Zable, Amitav Ghosh, Susanne Gervay, Jamil Ahmad, Sophie Masson, Deepa Agarwal, Michelle Cahill, Joginder Paul, Ali Alizadeh, Tabish Khair, Abdul Karim Hekmat, Anu Kumar, Andrew Y M Kwong, Bijoya Sawian, Julia Mackay-Koelen, Sujata Sankranti, Sharon Rundle and Meenakshi Bharat; with a foreword by Rosie Scott.

The collection of stories is a transnational publication to bring stories from India to Australia and from Australia to India. In our brief to the authors, Meenakshi and I asked that the stories be fictional, original and not play the blame game; but reveal the deeper complexities of the lives of refugees and asylum seekers from many different perspectives. The authors responded to our brief by imaginatively showing the effect on people in their daily lives. These diverse, creative and imaginative stories cover some surprising territory. Each story is different and unique. This means that we have included stories that portray refugees in a less kindly light, stories with no happy endings, stories that are deeply moving and stories that inspire with their courage and hope, warmth and humour.

In Sydney, Alien Shores was launched on May 20 by Mr Amit Dasgupta, Consul-General of India, Sydney, at a stellar event sponsored by the Hughenden Hotel. Finding a person to launch a book is never a problem. The real achievement lies in having someone who has not only read the book but one who brings a unique understanding to it.

In releasing Alien Shores, the Consul-General of India, Sydney, Mr Amit Dasgupta addressed the audience in a way that showed compassion and understanding. He acknowledged the gravity of a world with a moving mosaic of refugees. He spoke of the need for us to show humanity and of how easily any one of us could be thrust into similar situations.  The Consul-General spoke with warmth, generosity and humour.

Photo of the Consul-General of India taken by Raihana Hekmat

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Roanna Gonsalves, our MC, made sure that the launch was beautifully paced. Editors Meenakshi Bharat and Sharon Rundle spoke about discovering the theme and collaborating to bring these stories from Australia and the Indian subcontinent together in a transnational collection. Linda Jaivin, Andrew Y M Kwong, Abdul Hekmat, Michelle Cahill, Susanne Gervay and Rosie Scott, who have given such support for Alien Shores, came along and read from their stories; and afterwards happily signed books at our tea party. Authors in the audience included David Malouf, Devika Brendon, Patti Miller, Libby Sommer, Mabel Lee, Jacquie Everitt, as well as film and theatre producers Ana Tiwari, Neel Banerjee and Devaki Monani from SBS Hindi Radio.

 Readings Bookstore hosted the launch of Alien Shores in Melbourne on May 21.

Julian Burnside QC gave a moving and eloquent speech to launch ‘Alien Shores’. Arnold Zable read briefly from his story in ‘The Dust of Life’, followed by author and poet Ali Alizadeh who spoke about the unique perspective of his story before treating the audience to a short reading from ‘The Ogre’.  Sharon and Meenakshi revealed more about publishing the collection of stories. Publisher Kabita Dhara, spoke about Brass Monkey Books and Alien Shores. Authors Jen McVeity, Hazel Edwards, Meredith Costain, Paul Collins, Rose Inserra, illustrator Marjory Gardner joined us to celebrate the release of Alien shores.

After toasting Alien Shores with a glass of bubbly, Meenakshi and I moved on to Lygon Street to a birthday dinner for Paul Collins with Susanne Gervay, Jen McVeity, Hazel Edwards, Meredith Costain, Rose Inserra, illustrator Marjory Gardner and Edwin Wandha where we consumed some delish pasta and a few more bubbles.

Gosford Library Services held a Preview Launch on May 18 at their Erina Library on the NSW Central Coast.

        

Guest of Honour, Deb O’Neill, Federal MP, gave an impassioned speech about the theme of the book. Her deep understanding and recognition of the purpose of the book and the individual stories within, as she launched the volume had the audience spellbound. Andrew Y M Kwong, Michelle Cahill, Julia Mackay-Koelen attended the launch. Editors Sharon Rundle and Meenakshi Bharat talked about the value of reading the stories by authors from India and Australia in Alien Shores. John Caska, acted as MC to introduce the guest speakers.

 Gloucester Writers’ Festival launched Alien Shores during their warm and friendly lunch time event.

The festival featured writers Michael Wilding, Lisa Heidke, Lisa Walker and Susanne Gervay who was keynote speaker. Andrew Y M Kwong and Sharon Rundle read from their stories. Sharon spoke about the genesis of the book and Susanne gripped the audience with her story of her refugee background.

 

 Alien Shorespresents nineteen remarkable stories from acclaimed writers based in Australia and the Indian Subcontinent, which ruminate on the lives of refugees and asylum seekers all over the world. Powerful, poignant and sometimes funny, they tell the tales of brave people who, at great peril to their own safety, seek out a new life in a new land.

Alien Shores is available in all good book stores, including the Coop Bookshop, Berkelouw Paddington, Abbeys, Dymocks, Gleebooks, QBD.

 Alien Shores is published by Brass Monkey Books an imprint of Hunter Publishers.

 brassmonkey@hunterpublishers.com.au

 for any enquiries

 

ALIEN SHORES IS AVAILABLE FROM MAY 2012 FROM UNITED BOOK DISTRIBUTORS

 

 Brass Monkey Books Australia

Editors: Meenakshi Bharat and Sharon Rundle (Eds)

Publish Date: May 2012

ISBN-13:9780980863932

ISBN-10:0980863937

Origin:Australia

Imprint:Hunter Publishers

Publisher:U.Q.P.

January 25, 2012

Happy Australia Day to all Australians & happy Republic Day to all from India.

I was fortunate enough to be invited to the Australia Day  lunch at Darling Harbour by my generous friend and colleague Australia Day Ambassador Susanne Gervay. It was a glittering lunch with the theme of Legends of Australian Football. Ron Barassi, Gary Ablett, John Raper, Billy Slater, David Campese, David Pocock, Joe Marston and Mark Schwarzer were all feted for their sporting achievements. Sponsor of the Australia Day lunch, Australia Post has issued a series of 2012 Australian Legends of Football stamps to mark the occasion. They are available from your post office.

The event began with Clarence Stockee and Matthew Doyle ceremoniously giving Acknowledgement to Country, through music, dance and song.

Sneaky Sound system performed ‘Pictures’ and ‘Big’.

Her Excellency Marie Bashir AC CVO Governor of New South Wales was the keynote speaker. With her usual grace and dignity she spoke about her own childhood growing up in Australia and what Australia meant to her and to many people.

Jennifer Byrne was a relaxed, amusing and charming MC, introducing the speakers and performers who entertained throughout the lunch. Roy Slaven and HG Nelson were at their best as they introduced and interviewed the Australia Post Australian Legends and presented them with a version of their stamp in gold. The Hon. Barry O’Farrell delivered an Australia Day Message. The event was resoundingly concluded with the Gondwana Singers singing the National Anthem.

Each table had Australia Day Ambassadors and their guests from various walks of life such as music, literature, medicine, art, sports and many others. It encouraged lively conversation and exchanges between us and many business cards were passed around. Kamahl was just two seats away!

The food was sumptuous, with dainty morsels of wattle-seed macadamia nuts, pepper-berry grissini with bresaola and pumpkin, fetta and lemon myrtle scone (the scone was the size of a ten cent piece, no kidding) for ‘pre-lunch’ nibbles. An entrée of smoked salmon and wasabi butter terrine with crab meat roulade and cucumber salsa, followed by a ‘surf and turf’ main course of melt-in-the mouth slow roasted grass fed beef tenderloin with poached sweet water crayfish tail, tiny tiny sautéed snow peas and the most delish truffled fondant potato; and a nice drop of merlot. As if this wasn’t enough, Peach Melba pavlova with raspberry gelato appeared in front of us – it was heaven in a dish.

I feel most honoured to have been invited to an event with people who are so passionate about their work and about Australia. Whether we are having a soaking in NSW or sweltering in WA, I wish you all a happy Australia Day 2012.

Australia Day Fireworks on Youtube

In 2009 and 2010, I was in India on January 26 and watched the exciting parade of floats, military, bands, musicians, dancers, motor bikes, tanks, people from every Indian state taking part in the Republic Day procession to India Gate. Speeches were delivered by the Indian president Pratibha Devi Singh Patil, the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and other VVIPs (though on one occasion the Prime Minister was unable to attend due to ill health). It was spectacular and unforgettable. So different from Australia Day held here on the same day but in each case the same tremendous pride in one’s country and heritage.

India 2009 Republic Day parade

I hope the 26th January gives us all something to feel glad and optimistic about.

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