Risks: New stories from fourteen of Australia’s most exciting fiction writers
FACP $16.95 pb, 320pp
And the fourteen are: Brian Castro, Sara Dowse, Joan London, Gillian Mears, Kim Scott, Brenda Walker, Marele Day, Tom Flood, Gail Jones, Beverley Farmer, David Brooks, John A Scott, Simone Lazaroo, and Carmel Bird, in the order anthologised. In summary: no contribution is less than satisfying, many are gripping, most are distinguished. It’s just that I have a problem with ‘risks’ as the postulated organising principle, though editor Brenda Walker might indeed take comfort in this exchange from Carmel Bird’s contribution, which might serve as epigraph to this review.
Too bad; I’ll risk it. This is a weird sort of writing, I have been told. It isn’t fiction; it isn’t essay; it isn’t poetry. What is it?
Ken wonders about this too. What do you actually think you’re doing here, writing this stuff! he says.
It is a slow search with words for the point where consciousness and understanding intersect with unconsciousness and confusion ...