Lately, I’ve been trying my hand at storytelling.  For some reason, all the short stories I’ve written have centred around emergency service workers like paramedics or Country Fire Service volunteers.  (That’s a sneaky and actually not very funny “in” joke since my partner is both a paramedic and CFS volunteer firefighter. Everyone has their off days.)

Front room still life (with husband)

Front room still life (with husband)

My very first short story ended up winning a prize run by the Australian Literature Review and I received a box of short story collections from Random House in the post. Best. Prize. Ever. Well, I say that since I haven’t won anything that involves holding a gigantic novelty cheque.  The title of the story is Night Skyline and you can read it if you click right here.

Breaking Beauty by Midnight Sun Publishing

Breaking Beauty by Midnight Sun Publishing

The second short story I wrote ended up in an anthology called Breaking Beauty brought out by MidnightSun Publishing in 2014. The story is called Pissing Blood for Lucy Liu and I’ve got to say that this is the best title I’ve ever come up with for a piece of writing. If you click here you can buy a copy of the book from MidnightSun. When enough time has passed for the publisher to not be completely crapped off with me for giving away my story for free, I’ll post it here. Until then – sorry. She knows where I live.

Cassandra Atherton, in her review of the collection for the extremely prestigious Australian Book Review (Jan-Feb 2015 #368) said…

“Humorous rather than realist stories are the most memorable: Rebekah Clarkson’s ‘A Simple Matter of Aesthetics’, with its finial-hating protagonist, Matthew Gabriel’s ‘To My Son’, which opens, ‘It is not your fault that you are ugly … ’, and Rachael Mead’s paramedical ‘Pissing Blood for Lucy Liu’ are the witty high points.”

So I was pretty chuffed with that – especially since I was mentioned in the same sentence as Rebekah Clarkson who is going to be Australia’s answer to Lorrie Moore when it comes to the art of the short story.

“The bouncer and the blood clot”, was selected to be performed at Spineless Wonders Presents at The Wheatsheaf Hotel in 2013 and later won second prize in the Short Fiction section of the Salisbury Writers’ Festival 2016.

“An excellent response time” was published in the short story anthology Crush: an anthology of love stories Midnightsun Publishing 2017.

I’m currently working on a collection of short stories provisionally titled The Application of Pressure for which Arts SA generously awarded me a Project Grant in 2016.


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