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Kirstyn McDermott

About Me


I was born in Newcastle on Halloween, an auspicious date which may go some way towards explaining my lifelong attraction to all things dark, mysterious, and bumpy-in-the-night-ish. After completing a beautifully useless Bachelor of Arts at Newcastle University, I moved to Melbourne and have lived here ever since.

I’ve made up stories my whole life, and have been writing them down in some form or another since my early teens. (Technically, it’s not called lying if you write them down.) My short fiction has been published in various magazines and anthologies, collecting all sorts of lovely and encouraging accolades along the way, and my first novel will be released in 2010.

Although I read widely and voraciously, I have particular passion for speculative fiction, especially that strange beast which has been variously labeled as gothic, horror, dark fantasy, or weird fiction. Not surprisingly, it’s also the sort of stuff I like to write. (Just no sparkling vampires, please.)

My long involvement with the Australian spec fic community has led to friendships with some of the most brilliant, passionate and talented people I know, for which I’m profoundly grateful. It’s seen me run conventions, wax not-so-lyrical on discussion panels, edit magazines, write pseudonymous columns, and serve on enough committees to last a lifetime. Possibly. I’m also a member of the Melbourne-based SuperNOVA writers group, an amazing bunch of fellow miscreants who help keep me honest and in front of my word processor. Most of the time, at least.

Apart from writing and reading and other book-related-thingies, my near-obsessions include photography and travel, cemeteries and abandoned places, eavesdropping and people-watching. Plus chocolate and wine and cheese – dark and red and blue for preference – all of which make very nice gifts. (I’m just saying.)

My first novel, Madigan Mine, will be published by Picador in August 2010.



Short Stories: Published

  • “Soon the Teeth” – AntipodeanSF No.128 (2009)
    • Read it online here.
  • “Indigo in Absentia” – Southerly No.68/3 (2008)
  • “Feather” – Black Box (Brimstone Press, 2008)
  • “Painlessness” – Greatest Uncommon Denominator No.2 (2008)
    • Winner: 2008 Aurealis Award
    • Winner: 2008 Ditmar Award
    • Winner: 2008 Chronos Award
    • Preview and purchase it online here.
  • “Golden” – Island No.110 (2007)
  • “Shadow Puppet” – FlashSpec No.2 (Equilibrium Books, 2007)
  • “Somewhere Else: Jane” – Mitch? No.4 (2006)
  • “Cold” – Shadowed Realms No.9 (2006)
    • Nominated: 2006 Ditmar Award
    • Honourable Mention: Year’s Best Fantasy & Horror (ed. Datlow, et al)
  • “The Truth About Pug Roberts” – Southern Blood (Sandglass Press, 2003)
    • Nominated: 2003 Ditmar Award
    • Honourable Mention: Year’s Best Fantasy & Horror (ed. Datlow, et al)
  • “RavensPerch: A Faerie Tale” – Andromeda Spaceways Inflight Magazine Vol.1 No.5 (2003)
  • “Louisa” – Redsine No.7 (2002)
  • “Silver and Gold, My Love, Silver and Gold” – Tourniquet Heart (Prime Books, 2002)
  • “Smile for Me” – Redsine No.6  (2001)
    • Honourable Mention: 2001 Aurealis Award
    • Honourable Mention: Year’s Best Fantasy & Horror (ed. Datlow, et al)
  • “Tears for Broken Toys” –  Bloodsongs No.8 (1997)
  • “Red” – Cosmopolitan (June 1996)
    • Reprinted: Cosmopolitan Book of Erotic Fiction (1996)
  • “Every Time She Spoke His Name” – Skintomb No. 7 (1996)
  • “Running with the Gods” – Skintomb No.6 (1995)
    • Honourable Mention: Year’s Best Fantasy & Horror (ed. Datlow, et al)
  • “And the Moon Yelps” – Bloodsongs No.3 (1994)
    • Reprinted: Cold Cuts No.2 (1995)
  • “Rage” –  Shadows of Life (1994)
  • “The Publican’s Tale” –  Opus (1994)
  • “Softly, Softly Tread the Night” – Opus (1993)
  • “I Am the Silent Voyeur” –  Daarke Worlde No.4 (1993)

Short Stories: Pending Publication