Category Archives: Indie Publishing

Coming Soon: Bron Nicholls’ latest.

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Next month we will be releasing Bron Nicholls’s delightful Novella: When the Cat Speaks.

Nicholls is an acclaimed author of both adult and children’s literature. Her previous books include: Move; Three Way Street; Mullaway: Reasons of the Heart; Zeno’s Paradise; An Imaginary Mother; The Humming Tree; Currawong Calling.

Watch this space for release date, reviews and purchase details.

 

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Fremantle Launch for ‘Argot’

Christopher Konrad’s powerful poetry collection, Argot, will have its Western Australian launch in Fremantle next month.

This collection explores the domain of the personal, perhaps even secret speech, the half-hidden languages derived from culture, family and desire.  The collection will be launched by award winning poet and author, Shane McCauley [most recently, The Drunken Elk, Sunline Press, and Trickster, Walleah Press.]Argo-3d-cover

Thursday May 11
Orient Hotel
39 High St.     Fremantle

 

Kindly supported by New Edition Books – Fremantle

 

 

 

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Christopher Konrad

We are proud to announce the release of a new poetry collection, ‘Argot’  by the powerful voice of Christopher Konrad, a Western Australian poet, whose work has been published in numerous journals and has won several poetry awards, he now lives and works on the south eastern strip of this big continent.  See earlier post August 8Argo-3d-cover.

I first read Konrad’s work a year ago when he contacted Pomonal Publishing with the manuscript of ‘Argot’ and I knew immediately that this was one I wanted to turn into a book.  But my health has slowed me down . . . so I also knew this was not going to happen . . . unless I changed the way things are done around here.   I must demand more hands-on involvement from writers who wish to publish with us.

Chris Konrad rose to that challenge and did all the layout himself, even designed his own cover (with quite a bit of interference from me) and organized the print run. He hopes to properly launch the collection in Western Australia, where both he and his work are better known, but in the meantime it is available here.

Here’s one of from the collection:
 
Liminal

Crashing waves carry us onto the crushed sand to find there, on the
shore – something’s missing. Just out of reach, always at finger-tip
edge, singing out like buildings tumbling down into the sea. Never
quite there – Angels nod towards the dry dirt. Not quite or, she,
standing upon the bridge looking skywards, like a plea, like
inevitability & somewhere in-between another race we cannot
conceive but somehow so remote, & their celestial music. I feel the
wind salty through my fingers & the graining waves through my toes:
it is not in vain this edge, this ligature & liminal of day. Not for
nothing, the sculptures of the heart or mind.

 

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Chamber Launch Shots

Photos, as promised:
Katherine Brabon launching ‘Shots from the Chamber’ at the Chamber Art & Coffee House on June 11.

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Proud editors, from left: Christopher, Ben, and Myron.

 

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David Wood, poet, reading his poem from the anthology.

 

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‘Shots from the Chamber’ ring out!

CPAfinalcoverThe first anthology of poems by the Chamber Poets was let fly today amid much celebration at the Chamber Arts & Coffee House.  The event was part of the Woodend Winter Arts Festival.  This exciting, germane, community-affiliated publication was launched by Katherine Brabon, winner of the 2016 Vogel Award, who was born in Woodend. Contributing poets then read from their work.

Unfortunately I was unable to be there to represent Pomonal Publishing, as it was just too far for me to drive in a day, so I can’t yet show you pictures. For those of you at the festival: copies of the anthology can still be purchased from the Chamber Coffee House, from the New Leaf bookshop in Woodend, and it will soon be available online, through Amazon.

‘Shots from the Chamber’ is a remarkable volume featuring over sixty poets who have read at this event since its inception in February 2013. Hosted by founder of the band Going Down Swinging Myron Lysenko, Chamber Poets is a spoken word event incorporating art and music.

The book was edited by Ben Oost, Myron Lysenko and Christopher Race, with an introduction by poet and academic, Andrew Burke, a foreword by Myron Lysenko, and an extract from a forthcoming memoir by Ron Burrows. And, in addition to those 60 + contributors comprising both established and emerging poets, there are photos by Philip Holgate and David Crosbie. The book design was done by myself and Ben Oost. I promise pictures of the event as soon as they arrive in the PP inbox.

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A splendid kind of darkness

Bright autumn sun interspersed with showers, inclement cloud the darkly spectacular backdrop to a radiance of red/gold foliage – Clunes is at its magical best in moody weather. The lighting seemed purposely tuned to shades of Annie Drum’s collection of stories, ‘Like Trees’, launched at the festival on Sunday. See previous posts.

A cold wind did not deter Clunes Booktown festival goers. The upper room of ‘the Warehouse’ where Neil Boyack‘s segment of the program unfolded was packed with readers of, and true believers in BOOKS. Yes, that good old fashioned printed word.

Introduced and lauded by Boyack, Annie assured us that the sometimes darkness of her stories was no cause for the concern that had been (kindly) expressed; she was in fact quite okay in herself. Then she read the story: Hero And The Machine, from the collection, and from which I’ve quoted in an earlier post.

Two days previously Annie had spoken about Boyack’s support of her writing in an interview on VOICE FM Ballarat. Neil is a Central Victorian author and convenor of the Newstead Short Story Tattoo, a small literary festival that features both known and emerging writers, with a substantial sidedish of music and fireside storytelling. His particular support for new and emerging voices was substansiated on Sunday by the inclusion of a very young writer indeed: Zach Haywood, a student of Maryborough Education Centre, reading for the first time with remarkable poise.

Other readers were Nathan Curnow, and Bronwyn Blaiklock both published poets and consummate poet-performers.  Kirsten Boerema charmed us with her powerful voice and magical ukulele accompaniment.

Those wishing to purchase a copy of LIKE TREES may do so by contacting us through Pomonal Publishing’s main website.

 

 

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Annie’s Stories Hitting the Highway

AnnieFaceOnly hours to go now, and I bet Ms Drum is feeling a tad nervous – as any emerging writer would be with the launch of her first published book. Fortunately she’ll be singing with her Acappella group in ‘the singing room’ (St Thomas Aquinas) shortly, and that ought to relax the diaphragm.

The Clunes Booktown 10th anniversary festival is well underway, despite a damp weekend. Annie’s collection of short stories, LIKE TREES will be launched by Neil Boyack in the Newstead Poetry Short Story Tattoo Presents segment, at 3.00 in the warehouse.

Annie spoke about her writing and the publication of this collection on community radio station Voice FM Ballarat during the week and I’ll put segments of her interview up here as soon as I’m back at my desk. Meanwhile get down to Clunes and buy some, buy lots of books, enjoy the long-awaited rain and support small publishers

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one week to ‘take off’

Like Trees inner

 

Annie Drum ‘s first collection of short stories will be launched by Neil Boyack on May 1st at the tenth anniversary festival, Clunes Book Town

These are razor-edged stories investigating the bounds of identity, provoking questions: How do we travel? And more importantly: What do we travel as?  Read the full Press Release on the Pomonal Publishing website.

…when she gave birth there was a sense of something sacred and almost like order. Throughout the labour Hero kept asking – how big is the egg? The large nurse said – a baby, you’re having a baby. The other nurse laughed, a sort of a crazy sound, and Hero thought she must be a bit off centre. When the large nurse presented her with a darling little bird in a tight white blanket Hero thought her heart might burst…

The launch will take place in the ‘Newstead Literary Tattoo Presents’ segment, in the Warehouse at 3.00 pm. To attend you will need to purchase a festival ticket. This will enable entry to all of the many exciting literary events of the weekend.  See the festival website for further details.

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Projects 2016

Let me tell you about some exciting new books we are working on for the first 6 months of this year:

Annie Shearing has been writing a series for younger readers, each focusing on a thorny or critical event challenging a group of friends in the outer suburbs of Melbourne; each book features a different member of the group. The first – ‘Anna & the Last House in Melbourne’ – will be ready later this month.

Pomonal Publishing’s Anthea Nicholls is the designer and all round hands-on person for this series.

Next up: ‘Like Trees’ short stories by Annie Drum – an emerging writer of literary fiction, whose close observation of life, coupled with quirky, moving depiction of people in fragile mind-states makes for poignant reading.

It is a personal pleasure to see this first collection of Drum’s stories carrying the Pomonal Publishing logo, as her writing has enchanted me for many years.  It will be launched 1st May at the Clunes Booktown 10th anniversary.

The ‘Like Trees’ book design is being done by the talented Lin Tobias. We are delighted to have her expertise on this and, hopefully, future projects.

Chamber Poets (known to us for hosting the 2015 launch of Christopher Race’s ‘Still Life With Grandmother’) are producing a members’ poetry anthology. The theme is ‘Place’ and submissions are now closed. The editing team are Ben Oost, Christopher Race, and convenor Myron Lysenko. Hands-on layout will be done by Ben Oost with my input. It will be launched at the Woodend Winter Arts Festival in June.

While I’ve been taking a back seat on all these projects, I’ve been focusing on reading submissions, and on the editing and book design for:

‘Macka’ a story about the adventures of a tame cockatoo Cocatoos.small that gets caught up with a wild flock and swept away in a colossal storm. This is a story for adults to read to children, written and beautifully illustrated by Peter Voice.

Peter Voice is an artist known for his work with Chalk Circle. He is currently involved with the founding of the WAMA, the Wildlife Art Museum (to be located near Pomonal).

Watch this space for more about each of these projects.

 

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Talent in the Wings

As mentioned in a previous post, I edit a community newsletter as a sideline to my publishing ‘hobby’.  It was in this context that I discovered the talents of a remarkable 11 year old, living down our dusty road a little way – a young person intending to become a writer when she finishes school, and already turning out work of staggering maturity. Below is a review piece she wrote recently for the newsletter about Pomonal Publishing.  Her byline: Evie 

Pomonal News.B&Wmaster

This local organization consists of a group of talented writers, editors and artists who publish their own books and sell them (mostly) online. They are also responsible for the monthly Pomonal Newsletter, which helps to inform the community of what’s been happening and events coming up. With a population around 350, our small town has lots going on!

Pomonal Publishing has a website where you can view new book releases and also read their blog. Fellow writers review the books and offer constructive feedback to the writer. One aspect I loved was reading about the world of writing and publishing.

I was asked to read and review their latest publication: ‘Currawong Creek’ by Bron Nicholls (who has written two other books for young readers). I loved this book and would describe it as heart warming and sophisticated. I particularly liked the main character Alice, with her different thoughts and the way she saw the world. I loved the bit where she finally made a new friend, and the type of relationship they had (not being in each others faces). I also liked the caring and warm relationship she had with her grand parents.

Pomonal Publishing is a fantastic establishment and I hope it continues. Make sure you check it out on: http://www.pomonalpublishing.com and look out for their books, now available at our local shop too!

newlettergrab

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And work goes on…

In recovery mode after the launch of our second poetry publication: ‘Still Life With Grandmother’. (Is it a month already?) Those of you who understand this publishing hobby was only meant to keep me out of mischief while my body fell into undignified demise, may well imagine the toll that event took on me.  If you missed the excitement, visit YouTube to hear the author, Christopher Race, reading from the title poem. Or yours truly trying to ensure Pomonal Publishing is not taken to be something it never can be, unless someone more able than myself sits in the driving seat.

currawong calling

We struggle on, getting ready to upload ‘Currawong Calling’, the latest work for younger readers by acclaimed children’s author, Bron Nicholls (my sister, as it happens).  A quiet novel for a more individual readership, this will be a limited edition, by author request. Fans of Bron’s work may let us know via this site, if you would like to pre-order a copy.

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Launching: Still Life With Grandmother

File 17-03-2015 5 47 04 pmOn a balmy autumn day, after a magical journey through the Wombat Forest to Woodend, I met up with Christopher Race in an odd little cafe, ‘The Chamber Art & Coffee House‘. He and Myron Lysenko were doing something obscure with microphones, in readiness for the first half of the afternoon: the gathering of the Chamber Poets, live music from Black Forest Smoke and an open mic segment. Greetings, hugs, introductions, cheek kissing…

We were off to a racing start for the launch of Pomonal Publishing’s second volume of poetry: Christopher’s ‘Still Life With Grandmother‘. By 3pm the rooms of ‘The Chamber’ had filled with a heart-warming crowd. Myron MC-ed proceedings with an inimitable flair. He also launched the collection of poems into ‘the universal world of books’ with just the right touch of theatre.

I then gave account of Pomonal Publishing; the whys and wherefores that readers of this blog are already familiar with – not wanting us to be taken for something we are not and probably never can be. Not a business venture, rather a collective adventure. (Appreciative nodding.)

Christopher read from his book, including an extract from the long title poem, was duly applauded, and we were on to the champagne and nibbles. Both author and publisher relieved it had all gone off without mishap or disappointment. Such a grand turn out and more than 50 copies sold (should just about cover the cost of the champagne and nibbles. Author’s expense!) And Christopher had read very well, even (as I heard afterwards) drawing tears. So that was it: Pomonal Publishing’s first ‘event’.

I want to thank Myron Lysenko, convener of Chamber Poets for enabling and hosting the day. (His review of the book is posted here already – see below.) Also present was Michael Foster, who compiled and edited this collection. It was good to be able to publicly acknowledge his excellent work. Thanks are due to the Chamber Art & Coffee House owners and staff for their part in making this a splendid gathering. How they managed to prepare food and serve customers in the midst of all this is a mystery. A special thank you also to my driver – friend of many decades, Carole Wilson – who enabled me to get there without undue stress to the body of form.

An finally, to readers and publishers everywhere: I introduce you to the work of Christopher Race.

 

 

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Emerging Australian Poet

Our forthcoming publication, the second in our poetry series, ‘Still Life With Grand-mother’ by Christopher Race,  is  an  event  of  some  significance  for   Pomonal Publishing: it will be the first time we have held a public launch for one of our books, complete with posters, press releases, invited guests, drinks and nibbles.

I have known Race since we were both in our late teens, poised without dignity on the cusp of our adulthood and holding that spurious conviction (you may well recall it)  that one actually sees the world clearly.  We have watched each other grow up, both as writers and as a members of our species; arriving at the tail end of the booming-babies with our own particular tales to tell.  Christopher has worked with books and writing for all these years – both on personal projects and professional jobs (including in-house and freelance editing). He is now a qualified librarian.

It was with considerable elation that I discovered, just a few years ago, that my literary friend had  also found his voice as a poet. Now it is with pride and great pleasure – and the help of a mutual friend, Michael Foster, who has selected and edited this collection – that Pomonal Publishing announces the forthcoming release of this book: STILL LIFE WITH GRANDMOTHER.  It will be launched on Saturday 14th March at the (locally legendary) monthly Chamber Poets reading, at The Chamber Art & Coffee House in Woodend, Central Victoria.  Race will be the featured poet reading poems from this collection.

 

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Tales of innocence and experience:

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One of the reasons I got involved with indie publishing is because I miss the collaborative nature of film production; specifically that buzz which comes from a group of creative minds working together, reaching different (if not greater) dimensions than the solitary process.

As yet the collaboration here has been limited to an exchange between an author, their editor (if they have one) and myself.  You see, I am committed to the notion of allowing the author control over how their book will look.  But I’m beginning to realise that publishing isn’t like filmmaking, where a group of individuals skilled in different aspects of the process come together – each responsible for that one area of expertise but all working under the unifying vision of either a producer or a director. That process doesn’t yet unfold so neatly here.  My authors and I are still finding our way.

To begin with, I myself am embarrassingly inexperienced in publishing – my skills lie in photography and film production (and all that goes with those areas in terms of graphics and design sensibilities) and in writing. Putting out my own first novel – I was a screen writer in my previous incarnation – was how Pomonal Publishing came into being.  But I didn’t want to be just a self-publisher!

Now I’m realising that my authors are also inexperienced (in bookmaking, not in writing) and that together we are making lots of mistakes!

Here’s a doozy: Our next PP book will be a collection of poetry by Christopher Race. But I’ve been talking about it as an ‘anthology’ – I even used that term in my Foreword for the review editions already printed. And I used the term when I approached renowned Australian poet Chris Wallace-Crabbe, to ask if he would be willing to review the book.  He politely queried the word, which set me straight.

Of course the dictionary does define ‘Anthology’ as a collection of poems etc.  But it does not say (or at least mine doesn’t) ‘by different authors’!  However, this is the assumed knowledge that anyone in the industry, or any Humanities graduate would already have.  And this is exactly the type of pitfall I’m likely to make on entering an area in which I am untrained and still inexperienced.

Should I cease and desist my amateur attempts to publish beautiful (and professional) books?

Perhaps with kindness and patience (and a little informal mentoring) from such consummate professionals as CWC, we shall achieve excellence in time.  Until then, we’ll bumble on, and after we are gone Pomonal Publishing’s banner may be held aloft by more capable arms.

Christopher Race’s COLLECTION of poems, Still Life With Grandmother, will be out early in the new year. Please watch this space for more details.

 

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