Authentically owning a character’s experience is one of the great challenges faced by fiction writers, especially when it is something as intensely felt as living with terminal illness. It is testimony to A.J. Betts’s talent that she does so in Zac & Mia without lapsing into melodrama, rather, maintaining a voice that is youthful, contemporary, emotional when it needs to be but never clichéd.
Maya Linden has lived and worked in the United States and in Australia as a writer, researcher, restaurant and bar critic, book reviewer, and teacher of Creative Writing at the University of Melbourne. She has recently completed a PhD on feminine masochism in women’s literature at the University of Adelaide, and her creative and critical writing has been published in many local and international journals, including Meanjin, Westerly, Life Writing and Australian Book Review, as well as several anthologies. Her website is www.mayalinden.com