Shortly after the release of Voyagers: Science Fiction Poetry from New Zealand was announced, New Zealand poet and editor John Irvine got in touch to say that he had recently published an illustrated anthology of science fiction poetry, Anomalous Appetites. You can find out all about it on John’s website.
I’ve now read Anomalous Appetites, and I found it a mixed bag (like any anthology), with some parts very much to my taste and others less so. I’m impressed by the range of poets included, with contributors from the US, the UK and the Philippines as well as New Zealand. The most immediately impressive thing about the anthology is the design: this collection is lavishly illustrated, and I especially liked those sections, such as the haiku by Greg Schwartz, in which the poems are fully integrated with the illustrations.
In addition, I particularly enjoyed the poetry of Maureen Irvine, John Irvine, Ken Head’s “Imagining the Pandemia”, Kristine Ong Muslim, and Charles Christian. Although the brief of the anthology is speculative poetry, most of it is horror poetry: there’s plenty of vampirism and cannibalism doing the rounds. It was often the pieces that had at least a science fiction element, rather than being pure horror, that appealed to me most.
In any case, I think it’s a really good sign to see not one but two speculative poetry anthologies being produced in New Zealand, and I wish John and his collaborators all the best with future ventures.
New Zealand Speculative Fiction Blogging Week: 14-20 September
In an effort to raise the profile of speculative fiction writers in New Zealand, the week of 14-20 September has been declared New Zealand Speculative Fiction Blogging Week. By happy coincidence, Helen Lowe and I are holding our writing event in Wellington, Fantastic Voyages: Writing Speculative Fiction, during that week – see the poster below. So I expect I will blog about this – but that will leave room for one other NZ speculative fiction post during the week. Any suggestions of what you’d like me to cover?
This is a fundraiser for the victims and relatives of the Princess Ashika Ferry Disaster in Tonga. I won’t be able to attend, unfortunately, but if you’re in the area, I recommend both the lineup of poets and the cause.
Featuring Glenn Colquhoun, Karlo Mila, Apirana Taylor, David Geary and the Paekakariki School Kapa Haka group.
Saturday 5 September, 2pm
UPDATE: The venue has been moved to the larger capacity Paekakariki Memorial Hall, The Parade (next to Campbell Park on the seafront).
Koha entry, and raffle
Contact: Helen Keivom 04 905 7178 or helen.keivom (at) kapiticoast.govt.nz