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A new lease of life for my books

As you know, I was bitterly disappointed when Satalyte shut up shop as it might have meant the end of my admittedly short career as a publi...

About Me

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I am a writer, editor, reviewer and dance teacher based in Perth, Western Australia.

My books

The first two novels of my trilogy, The Talismans, are available as e-books from Smashwords. I do have paperbacks of The Dagger of Dresnia at the low price of $AU25 including postage within Australia. I also have a short story, 'La Belle Dame', in print - see Mythic Resonance below. The best way to contact me is via Facebook!

Buy The Talismans

The first two books of The Talismans trilogy were published by Satalyte Publications, which, sadly, has gone out of business. I hope to see my books back on Amazon under a new publisher in the near future.

The Dagger of Dresnia

The Dagger of Dresnia
Want a copy? Contact me at satimafn(at)gmail.com

The Cloak of Challiver

The Cloak of Challiver
Available again as an ebook soon!

Mythic Resonance

Buy Mythic Resonance

Mythic Resonance is an excellent anthology that includes my short story 'La Belle Dame', together with great stories from Alan Baxter, Donna Maree Hanson, Sue Burstynski, Nike Sulway and nine more fantastic authors! Just $US3.99 from Amazon. Got a Kindle? Check out Mythic Resonance.

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Places I've lived: Manchester, UK

Places I've lived: Manchester, UK

Places I've lived: Gippsland, Australia

Places I've lived: Gippsland, Australia

Places I've lived: Geelong, Australia

Places I've lived: Geelong,  Australia

Places I've lived: Tamworth, NSW

Places I've lived: Tamworth, NSW

Places I've Lived - Sydney

Places I've Lived - Sydney
Sydney Conservatorium - my old school

Places I've lived: Auckland, NZ

Places I've lived: Auckland, NZ

Places I've Lived: Mount Gambier

Places I've Lived: Mount Gambier
Blue Lake

Places I've lived: Adelaide, SA

Places I've lived: Adelaide, SA

Places I've Lived: Perth by Day

Places I've Lived: Perth by Day
From Kings Park

Places I've lived: High View, WV

Places I've lived: High View, WV

Places I've lived: Lynton, Devon, UK

Places I've lived: Lynton, Devon, UK

Places I've lived: Braemar, Scotland

Places I've lived: Braemar, Scotland

Places I've lived: Barre, MA, USA

Places I've lived: Barre, MA, USA

Places I've Lived: Perth by Night

Places I've Lived: Perth by Night
From Kings Park

Inner Peace Blog

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Versatile Blogger Award

Versatile Blogger Award
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Fabulous Blog Award
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Saturday, 15 July 2017

Dancing again


This morning, I attended a superb dance workshop with visiting American professor, Scott Putnam. I was too exhausted to stay for the afternoon session!

In fact, I must admit that I find contemporary dance heavy going - I only got through it at WAAPA by staying back to attend the evening classes for extra coaching, and I'm sure the examiners threw in a few charity marks so I at least got a pass in the exams.

It was lovely to watch all the keen young dancers (I was by far the oldest there!) and to see their inventive short choreographies. Professor Putnam is an excellent coach and I'm sure the dancers learned a great deal - as indeed I did, although whether or not I'll remember any of it this time next week is a moot point. The body feels worn out and I suspect the mind is heading in the same direction!

I was disappointed not to see more older teachers there. Perhaps Contemporary Dance is a young person's game. Classical ballet can also be exhausting, but at least you don't have to throw yourself onto the floor ten times a minute. (That's an exaggeration, but it does seem to be the default move when a contemporary dancer is wondering what to do next!)

As a young woman back in the late 1950s, I was deeply impressed by Contemporary Dance - it seemed so different from classical ballet, and so very modern. (Well, yes, Satima - that's why it's called Contemporary...) I first saw it when I attended a course of lectures by Beth Dean, an American dance ethnologist who had recently opened a school in Sydney. I was so impressed by this very new and different technique that I persuaded my mother to let me go to classes. It was an added expense for my parents - they were already paying for me to learn ballet at the Scully-Borovansky school, and piano, and singing, plus speech and drama, all at the Conservatorium.

But I enjoyed Miss Dean's classes, and started to take classical classes with her now and then. I eventually danced with her company, called Australian Dance Theatre. (It had no relationship to the later, Adelaide-based company of that name.) I am wont to boast about my appearance in a show before the Queen in 1963. I was dressed as  brolga, and while I'm sure the Queen wouldn't have noticed me as one of six people in brown all-overs with hoods, it was an experience to remember!

Dance has been my main love since I was four, when I saw the lovely pictures in a Ballet Annual owned by one of my sisters. However, I didn't start learning until I was eleven, and for the first year I had to pay for lessons out of my pocket money as my mother considered dancing to be a waste of time and money.

Then we moved house, and my new teacher, Joan Ashton, taught me free in return for helping with the junior classes. She even paid for me to have classes with her teacher, the late, great, Isobel Anderson. But young people don't always value or even see what people are doing for them, and I abandoned Miss Ashton and Miss Anderson to study at the more famous Scully-Borovansky school.

Somewhere about that time, I saw a performance by the Bodenwieser company at the Conservatorium. That means I must've seen the now centenarian Eileen Kramer!

Well, here I am sixty years later, loving dance as much as ever but unable to perform  many steps and exercises that at one time I would have done easily and with gusto. Tempus has fuggitted, and stolen just about all my flexibility and most of my strength as well! But I won't stop dancing until I become absolutely incapable of doing a plié!

Many thanks to Robyn Cooper and Angela Perry for their organisation of today's workshop. It was a joy to attend!
Wednesday, 5 July 2017

A poem, just for fun!


I wrote this bit of doggerel one Saturday afternoon when I either had nothing better to do — or was in work-avoidance mode!

Long, long ago in a place far away,
There dwelt a fair princess: her name was Aimée

Her parents decided ’twas time she was wed
But Aimée was not keen to share her fine bed
Not with prince, not with pauper, nor poet, nor priest
She just didn’t care for men, not in the least.

The love of her life was a charming young girl
Whose father was neither a duke nor an earl
But a farmer who planted and weeded and reaped
And bred the best horses and fine wooly sheep

Aimée and her darling girl plotted and planned
To sail on a ship to different land
Some place far away where their names were unknown
Where Aimée would never succeed to a throne.

So the lovers took sail to a place far away
Where they could be happy and merry — and gay.

Meantime, Aimée’s father was angry and sad
And wished that he’d sired not a girl, but a lad.
But he had forgotten that long, long, before
He’d loved a sweet farm girl whose name was Amour

An adventurous fellow, her son (called Ticoam)
Set off for the city his father called home
Expecting adventures and fortune to boot
He left his home whistling, and tootling his flute

Ticoam soon found an amazing new pal
A fairy, who taught him a magical spell
A spell that would make any woman he liked
Welcome him into her bed every night!

So Ticoam had him a wonderful time
With dark girls, with fair girls -  whoever he liked!
But still he remembered his darling Aimée
And thought of her beauty all day, every day!

The King, Aimée’s father, a promise decreed
That the man who found Aimée would win a fine steed
An estate in the country (and a townhouse of course)
No wonder our hero was whistling, perforce.

So Ticoam went sailing, a-sailing went he
To bring back the princess from over the sea
It took him some months, but he found her alright
And he kidnapped the lady one dark stormy night.

Her sweet friend, whose name, by the way, was Katraan
Fought Ticoam but couldn’t deflect his strong arm
Weeping, she followed him back from abroad
And took a cheap place where she got bed and board.

But when Ticoam saw Katraan, he fell deep in love
And the feeling was mutual – like two turtle doves
They cuddled and kissed and they billed and they cooed
With poor Princess Aimée forgotten for good!

So she took up her place as her father’s true heir
While Ticoam and Katraan built their own little lair
Living long lives and happy on Ticoam’s reward
And loving and faithful in bed and at board.

Aimée swore an oath that she never would love
A man or a woman, but only a dove
So alongside her duties at court and in town
She bred the best pigeons, the white and the brown.

Let this be a moral for women and men –
Try hard not to fall in love ever again!

Saturday, 3 June 2017

Are you a Mystery Blogger?



Fellow author-blogger Sue Burztynski — https://suebursztynski.blogspot.com.au — has honoured me by nominating me as one of her Mystery Blogger awardees. The award was founded by Okoto Enigma — https://www.okotoenigmasblog.com/my-greatest-creation-yet/ — It’s intended to be an award for amazing bloggers with ingenious posts, and it’s a great way to get our readers to check out more blogs! Are you one of my ‘followers’? (Scroll to the very bottom of the page) Or are you listed in the ‘Blogs I follow’ at left? If so, you are welcome to join in.



Here’s how to do it:
1. Put the award logo on your blog.
2. List these rules.
3. Thank whoever nominated you and link to their blog.
4. Mention the creator of the award (Okoto Enigma) and provide a link as well. (See the first para of this post)
5. Tell your readers three things about yourself.
6. Nominate roughly 10 – 20 people for this award.
7. Notify your nominees by commenting on their blogs.
8. Ask your nominees five questions.
9. Share a link to your best/favourite post that you’ve written.

 OK, three things about me:
1 I was born in Manchester, England, and lived there for the first five years of my life. (My mother used to say that all her children were born during thunderstorms, but I had to have an air-raid as well!)

2. I have lived at well over sixty different addresses in five different countries: England, Australia, New Zealand, the USA and Scotland.

3. I have tried several different lines of work over the course of my life: mostly I’ve been a dance teacher, but I’ve also tried retail, clerical work, farming, dancing in cabaret and clubs/hotels and in a small contemporary dance company (we actually performed before the Queen and Prince Phillip in 1963!) In my old age I have taken up writing and editing, and have had many reviews and articles published as well as two novels and the odd short story.

Want to join in the fun? I do think Helen Venn http://imaginemeatclarion.blogspot.com/ and Jo Wake http://henderson-jo.blogspot.com.au/ are good sports and might give it a whirl, but all followers (see the very bottom of this page) are invited to join in if they wish, as are all the bloggers I follow.

Here are my questions for my nominees
1. Your favourite book of all time?
2. Where would you rather live, and why – Alice Springs or New York?
3. If you could marry a famous person from history, who would you choose?
4. First two lines of your favourite poem?
5. List five authors who specialise in historical fantasy.

And here are my answers to Sue’s questions to me:

 • Three desert island books?
 #Well, let’s not count Robinson Crusoe, but there have been plenty of others: Cocos Gold (Ralph Hammond), The Swiss Family Robinson (Johann David Wyss), Lord of the Flies (William Golding) spring to mind. And while it’s a play, not a novel, I can’t resist adding The Admirable Crichton (J. M. Barrie).  Since I uploaded this, Sue Burztynski — https://suebursztynski.blogspot.com.au — has  reminded me that a 'desert island book' is one you would like to have with you if you were abandoned on a desert island. I would like a book on 'how to survive on a desert island'. Any suggestions?

• You have been offered your choice of place, money no object, (a fictional place is fine) to write your new book. Where is it?
#The French Riviera, of course. All the best writers go there, don’t they?

• Which three fictional characters would you invite to your New Year's Eve celebration? Why?
#Jerome K. Jerome and his two mates in a boat. Their bumble-footed actions would keep the entire party entertained all night.

• Favourite book-to-film adaptation/s?
#Not a film, but Game of Thrones, the HBO adaptation of George RR Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series, is brilliant.

 • Reincarnation exists! What will you be reborn as? Or, who would you like to have been in a previous life? (Doesn't have to be someone famous. For example, you might want to have been a cat in ancient Egypt, they had a great life and people could get into huge trouble for killing them.)
#Marie Curie. She was a woman who saw what needed doing and did it without a qualm, despite the obstacles and difficulties.

My favourite post on my own blog? It has to be the one that gets the most hits, but it’s a bit annoying that people aren’t googling me and my deathless prose. They are looking for a translation of a German saying: http://satimaflavell.blogspot.com.au/2007/04/hopfen-und-malz-gott-erhalts.html

All yours! Have fun!
Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Life has its ups and downs!



A rather exciting day, what with one thing and another. On my way to keep fit class, I stopped off at the clothing shop attached to the Senior Cits Centre, and wow! — the recycling gods had saved two garments that must have had my name on them. One is an utterly lovely, brand new, pink jacket: the other, a delightful long red skirt which I bought just in case anyone suddenly decides to hire septuagenarian belly dancers. (If no such gigs are forthcoming, I can wear it out to posh dinners, although there aren't too many of those on my agenda these days, either.) And I paid — you won't believe this — seven dollars for the two garments. Not each, both! The jacket alone would have had a price tag of well over $100 new, I suspect. It was definitely new - the pockets were still stitched, as expensive garments are often sold, and the maker's labels had been carefully cut off. There is a story there, I'm sure!

Keep fit was strenuous, as usual — I rather think that our fit, enthusiastic instructor sometimes forgets that he is coaching a bunch of senior citizens. A quick glance around the gathering suggests that many attendees aren't working to capacity and I can't blame them, but neither can I take leaves from their books. From force of habit I work as hard as I can, with the result that I sometimes have to sideline myself for part of the time. Only the advent of old age has taught me to do that. Old-style ballet training taught one to grit one's teeth and keep going, with no leniency for tiredness, sore muscles, bleeding toes or puddles of sweat on the floor. (No, I ain't joking!)

Then, on the way home, the bus driver had to hit the brakes and horn. I was sitting in an area where the seats face each other, and I had, heaven be thanked, the presence of mind to grab the safety rail to my left with my right hand, with the result that I was thrown and half turned so that I wound up sitting in the (fortunately empty!) seat opposite. The first thing I did was to grab the bag containing my precious new purchases in case they got tipped out onto the floor. (Vanity, thy name is Satima ...)

No, I wasn’t hurt, but I downed two cups of coffee in quick succession once I got home!

(No news on the rebirth of The Talismans yet. Soon, I hope!)
Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Quick report on Swancon 2017


Swancon 2017 was just as enjoyable as previous years. I was only on two panels - the focus was not, for the most part, on writers and writing, but that meant there were many enjoyable talks and panels on topics as diverse as Wayfinding by the Stars and Should Women be Freemasons? My favourite, I think, was a talk by Guest-of-Honour Sean Williams on his time in Antarctica!

My two panels were  Writing: from Idea to Page (with Glenda Larke, Luke Kendall and Meg Caddy) and Publishing: Where to Begin? (with Amanda Bridgeman, Glenda Larke, Luke Kendall and Heidi Kneale). All my fellow panelists are practised and published authors, several having many works under their belts.

The incredibly gifted Cat Sparks took a great many photos, as did several other camera enthusiasts. Most of the ones below are Cat's work. Cat also launched her first novel, Lotus Blue - but it sold out before I could grab a copy! I did buy lots of other books, though, including Meg Caddy's Waer and Luke Kendal's Wild Thing.

Two awards were on the program - the nation-wide Aurealis Awards and Perth's 'Tin Ducks'.  In the pic below you will see Glenda Larke with her award, which is definitely a Swan, not a Duck! She won it for 'Best Long Written Work'. I was invited to present two of the Aurealis awards - Best Fantasy Novella and Best Fantasy Short Story. You can find a full list of Aurealis winners at https://aurealisawards.org/

Glenda's  lovely Tin Duck!
Luke Kendall, Glenda Larke, Satima Flavell and Meg Caddy

Me trying to look glam, Juliet Marillier succeeding!

Three elegant ladies: Juliet Marillier and Glenda Larke with Guest-of-Honour, long-standing fan Davina Watson


Terri Sellen shares a joke with Yours Truly. (No, I don't think that's a  real sword...)


Hurrah - fellow fan  Grant Watson has put the Tin Duck winners up on Facebook, so I've copied them and here they are!

Best WA Long Written Work: Fall of the Dagger, Glenda Larke (See pic above)
Best WA Short Written Work: To Take Into the Air my Quiet Breath, Stephanie Gunn
Best WA Production: Australian SF Snapshot project  
Best WA Artwork: A Matter of Scale, Alicia Smith
Marg Hughes Award: Samara Morgan

All over until next year! Now I'm starting to feel post-con blue-ish!
Saturday, 15 April 2017

Yay for Swancon!


This Easter, as usual, I am attending Swancon, WA's annual speculative fiction convention. Great guests-of-honour, including, inter alios, Traci Harding, Sean Williams, Alan Baxter, and Davina Watson. I'm not on any panels for the first two days, so I'm free to roam into other panels, go the restaurant for coffee, or to visit the Traders' Room to buy BOOKS!

I'll come back to this post later, and meantime, you might like to betake yourselves to Swancon 42's Facebook Page at https://www.facebook.com/groups/swancon 

Or go to their website:
https://sites.grenadine.co/sites/swancon/en/swancon2017 

I'll get back to you later with a proper report and news of all the new BOOKS! (I won't mention the state of my credit card, though, after buying all those BOOKS!)

Did I mention that I like new BOOKS?
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