Trickster’s Treats #2

It is with delight I announce the publication of two new short stories by me in Trickster’s Treats #2 from Things in the Well Publications. Here, you can read my stories Worst House in the Street and Poke, as well as 32 other all-new offerings. What better way to celebrate the Halloween season?

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All proceeds from the anthology go to Women’s Community Shelters Ltd. Buy links can be found HERE Available in paperback and for Kindle.

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Australian Shadows Awards

The shortlists for the 2017 Australian Shadows Awards have been selected. I’m pleased to say Midnight Echo #12, which includes my story Effigia Malo, is up for contention in the best edited work category.

You can see the full shortlists HERE Perhaps you’ll find your next dark read among the contenders.

I was a judge for the novel category, and I can tell you, the amount and variety of dark fiction coming out of Australasia is amazing!

Hurrah for Hardcover!

IMG_5836Do you love a hardcover book? Well, good news! My books are being released as hardcovers. Here are the first four of my titles to be in the format.

Dylan’s Rock in both Regular Print and Large Print

Scar On The Sky in Large Print

Arachnight & Tasmanian Devils in Large Print (also in the same volume for the first time).

Buy directly from Lulu and you will save big on the list price. Also make sure you check Lulu’s homepage for additional discount offers.

Two more titles will be joining them in hardcover – Scar On The Sky (in regular print), and Thank You: A Tribute to Chris Cornell (also in regular print). I will be updating my buy links as I approve the proof copies, although all the titles mentioned here are already available for purchase through Lulu.

 

Special Offer from AHWA

The Australasian Horror Writers Association has an incredible deal available for fans of horror and dark fiction.

Get your hands on ten issues of Midnight Echo – Midnight Echo Issues 1-10 – for the very small price of just $10AUD. I don’t have any pieces in them, but this is too good a deal not to share.

Yes that is right TEN copies of the fantastic magazine, bringing you the best from Australian and New Zealand horror/dark fiction authors for just ten dollars. You will be able to download your ten issues immediately upon completing your transaction.

Get the offer here

International Women’s Day

Today is International Women’s Day, celebrating women and promoting equality. As inspiring as the day is, I find it frustrating that the day needs to exist at all. It is born from, and sustained by, inequality of the sexes. My hope is that it won’t be as relevant by the time my daughter is an adult, but I fear that won’t be the case.

When I first considered publishing horror fiction, I contemplated writing under my initials instead of my full given name. A.J. Maher looks far more like a horror writer name. Then I thought harder about it. Some readers won’t consider reading books with gritty topics if they’re obviously written by women. That’s their choice, but if I hid my gender behind initials, I would would be helping support their idea that horror isn’t a woman’s genre, that there’s something wrong with women writing it. Perhaps I’ll lose some sales because of it, but every time a woman refuses to bend under sexism is a step forward. If, on the other hand, a female writer uses her initials purely because she likes the way it sounds, she has my support.

I saw a man on Twitter today arguing against the idea that women shouldn’t have to choose between a career and a family. He had no idea. Now, I fully support women taking time off work to raise their children. I’m doing that myself. The real issue is how women are treated when they are ready to return to the workplace. That’s where it can truly be a choice between career or family. I’ve seen a man take a year of sabbatical leave, and return to his old position with no issues. I’ve seen a woman take the same length of maternity leave, only to find out the person who had been filling in for her would be retaining the position. The mother was then faced with working in a job she wasn’t fully trained for, in a facility that was a much farther commute away, for longer hours, or, resign. She resigned. The job she had put so much effort into had been stripped away from her with no consultation. The man on Twitter clearly had no experience with this sort of situation, but even worse was his refusal to listen to someone that did.

Today is a day to recognise true inequality and do what we can to confront it. Bring attention to the issues that matter to you. Tell your stories. Don’t conform to gender stereotypes if that isn’t the person you are. If a man (or woman) is being sexist, tell them and explain why. Perhaps you won’t have any impact, but it will be worth it if you do. Be brave, be strong, and make choices based on WHO you are. And fight for women to have the same opportunities, choices and salaries as their male counterparts.

 

 

Twisted Tax Tales

Featuring 35 short stories from an international mix of authors, Twisted Tax Tales is an anthology resulting from a competition run in 2016 by Success Tax Professionals. All profits from the book will be donated to the Save The Tasmanian Devil Appeal. My story, Life, Death and Taxes, was judged to be in the top 25 entries, and is included in the publication. I’m delighted to be a part of the project.

Tasmanian devils are one of my favourite animals, partly because I am Tasmanian myself. The species is under threat from Devil Facial Tumour Disease, a contagious cancer. DFTD has had a devastating effect on the wild population. Funds raised will go towards research into combating this major threat. It will be a tragedy if we lose these wonderful little animals. Please consider buying a copy of the anthology, or making a direct donation, and spread the word.

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You can buy a copy here.

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New Online Store

I love graphic tees, which is abundantly clear when you look in my wardrobe. So, it was a natural progression to decide to produce some t-shirts of my own. I found a host site to launch my store on and started loading up some designs. It’s been a lot of fun. I’m going to have to buy some of these for myself!

If you’re interested in grabbing some book-related merchandise (there are other products also available) click here. If you do happen to buy something, take a selfie and post it on my Facebook page!

 

New year, new stories

I hope everyone has had a safe and happy start to 2017. My goal is to do lots more writing this year, and release multiple titles.
I’m off to a good start. Today I finished the first draft of my first paranormal romance novella. It will need work, of course, but it’s been in development for a long time. I’ve based it (extremely loosely) on the lyrics to the song Scar On The Sky, with which it will share the title. If a fallen angel romance appeals to you, keep an eye out for further news on the project.
I have about ten other projects on the go as well. A few are side projects but if I get them all done this year it will be a real achievement. I also have a feeling I will be starting at least a few more new books in the coming months.
What would you like to see more of from me this year? More romance? More horror? Something else? Suggestions are always welcome.

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Hell’s Bells

I am excited to announce the launch of the all new anthology Hell’s Bells, a collection of festive ghost tales from the members of the Australian Horror Writers Association, including me! Some of the best writers in Australian horror are in this book. Get into the Christmas spirit… if you dare!

Australia https://www.amazon.com.au/d/B01MRYJM3F
US https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01MRYJM3F
UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01MRYJM3F
Canada https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B01MRYJM3F
and all other Amazon sites.

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