#Conflux9 art show sets up

art show setupPreparations are underway for the Conflux 9 art show, which kicks off at 9am tomorrow (26 April).

Many of the items on display are up for auction. Con members can place a bid or purchase prints at the Art Show desk.

For more information, visit the Art Show room (Executive Boardroom 3).


Kaaron Warren Conflux Special Guest takes out two Australian Shadows Awards

Recently Kaaron Warren took out two Australian Shadows Awards. One for her long fiction work ‘Sky’ and for her short story collection from Twelfth Planet Press, ‘Through Splintered Walls’. Congratulations Kaaron!

The announcement is here.


Conflux 9-local restaurants

The venue for Conflux 9, Rydges Capital Hill is very close to Manuka, one of Canberra’s premier restaurant and café districts. It also has a Greater Union theatre and a Coles supermarket and Post Office. It’s ten minutes or so walk down Canberra Avenue and you cross over at the lights. (the opposite direction to Parliament House). (Actually I think Kingston is closer-see entry on Kingston below).

There are a number of restaurants and cafes to choose from. I’m not sure of their opening hours but I will try to include phone numbers because if you are going with a big party or even a smaller one it pays to book. We’ve been to survey all the restaurant so this is now a comprehensive list.

Le Café in in Franklin Street, opposite the theatre. It serves coffees and meals etc.My Cafe info here.

The say they stay open until late so if you are finding it hard to sleep you might wander up here. However, late probably means around 11.00pm.

Next door to My Cafe is Caphs, which is also a cafe/restaurant. I don’t mind them. They have cooked me a meal as late as 11.pm and it was rather nice. There are a number smaller cafes that serve excellent coffee and snacks.

On the otherside of MyCafe is the Downtown milk bar and coffee lounge. I always thought of this place as a chocolate shop but I noticed that they are also doing light meals and are doing cafe trade.

Just up from these cafes is Bambusa, an asian restaurant and then there is Grill’d.

Ginseng is my daughter’s favourite Chinese restaurant. It’d down the end of the central block of cafes on Flinders Way. To book call 02 6260 8346. Timmy’s is also another favourite. Close by to Gingseng are Choices Vietnamese Restaurant (in the alley). Also  a Thai restaurant Baan Latsamy in the row. Mee ‘s Sushi is open Friday and Saturday and has excellent hand sushi rolls. A bit pricier than you get in a mall but very good. Always a queue on work days.

Just down from the theatre is Legends, Spanish restaurant. They do great tapas and seafood and do cater for larger groups. Their website has menus and booking details here.

On the other side of the restaurant there is Charlie Black and Saffron. I don’t know much about them. There is Artoven (bakery and you can get coffee) and Zambreros-take away Mexican.

There is a fairly new Korean BBQ restaurant opposite Coles but next to Legends called Tosang Marchall BBQ and while we are in that part of the centre, there is the Public across the road which is a pub/restaurant and it is open on Sunday. A night club called The Vinyl Room open to 4.00am Friday and Saturday. They serve cocktails. I haven’t been to any nightclubs in Canberra so I can’ tell you about this one but I added it in in case people are interested.

A truly excellent restaurant is Abell’s Kopi Tiam, which serves a range of food from Malaysian, Indonesian and Singapore. It’s never failed to please. Phone (02) 6239 4199. It’s on Furneaux Street, that’s the street closest to the hotel and near the lights as you walk down.

There is an Italian restaurant in Manuka called as Belluccis. And continuing up there is Timmy’s (great asian) and Thai Corner. In the little cul de sac there is Urban Pantry on the corner and a couple of great little cafes Ona and Zucchero. There is a place called Grandes, which is quite popular but pricey.

In the next mall down, there is La Rendezvous, a family owned Italian restaurant. Contact details are here.

The Jewel of India is a top Indian restaurant and it’s upstairs in the main block.

A Taste of Himilaya is in the alley between the blocks. Take a wander around and you’ll find it.

The Mecca Bar is down in the far building above Coles. That has a bar and a restaurant with a middle eastern influence. In the same building there is a new Japanese restaurant called Wasabi (open 7 days). I haven’t been there but here is their number  (02) 6295 8777

Next to Wasabi is a Gellatissimo, a place for coffee and gelato. Then there is Subway and Maccas in the same row.

Franciscos’ Mexican Cantina is in the little mall. I like this place, particularly their chocolate and cinnamon ice cream.

Further down in the mall type thing there is a new Indian restaurant called Pujabi Hut, upstairs in the Style mall. Next to it is Alanya, a turkish restaurant. Phone number 6295 967. BYO wine only but corkage is $6.00 per bottle. I’ve eaten here but a very long time ago.

So I’ve probably addled your brain. I think there might be more choice for eating in Manuka than in Civic. Canberra is strange like that. Some of the best restaurants are in the suburban areas. Manuka is pretty unique for Canberra.

As I work near the Rydges Capital Hill, and I walk to both Manuka and Kingston regularly, I think Kingston is closer. However, you have to cut across the park. Otherwise you take the long way. I’m happy to point the way on the map. Matt and I went to Kingston to provide you with an overview of the restaurants there. There are a few new ones as the premises have changed hands.

So further down Canberra avenue from Manuka is the Kingston Hotel, known locally as the Kingo and good for cheap steaks. The sign says there was also a pasta place inside called Papas.

Once in Kingston (cut through Telopea Park and up one of the streets will bring you to Kingston. On the corner there is a new restaurant/cafe called Me and Mrs Jones. I went there for tea and muffins one morning and it was fine. I haven’t tried their other meals. Continuing down Kennedy street is the China Plate (new) and Portia’s both asian. There is a Pizza Hut, Figaros (Italian), Crust Pizza (takeaway gourmet pizza), The Kennedy Room (also a night club), Bodega de Piintxos (a very new Spanish restaurant), La Rusitca (Italian), Tandoor Hut (Indian) and Two for Joy Cafe. Turning left down Eyre street, and the next corner is the Kingston Grind cafe, which brings you to Green Square. Here there is a Bittersweet cafe (which has a sign saying it’s all about the coffee), Caffe Lela, which is reasonable. I had some great fish and salad there yonks ago.

The Durham (pub), with food. The Harem Turkish restaurant (upstairs-doesn’t open Sunday), the Thai Armarim (been there heaps-not bad!). Across the road from Green’s Square is the Belgian Beer Cafe (more like a pub),Continuing up Jardine  Street is the Chicken Gourmet Take Away. (this used to be an excellent fish shop. I haven’t tried the chicken.).

There is a post office on the corner. Turning left into Giles street you come across Idelic, a up market cafe/lunch shop. Nice food. Next door is a cheap asian bakery that makes sandwiches and pies etc. I don’t think it opens on the weekend, but I’m not sure. Continuing along you get the Hong Hau, Thai Chaig Rai,Bollywood Masala (replacing the yummy Portuguese place I used to go to). Across the road is Art Espresso and Vie (I’ve been to Vie alot for breakfast/brunch). Then back across the road we continue along with Madam Woos, La Dolce Vita and La Campanna (both Italian). The Silo bakery (to die for but may only be open on Friday).

Then taking a longer walk or drive to the lakeside, there is the Wild Duck, a fine asian restaurant.

Phew! (So much choice. So little time.)

Closer to the hotel, there is the Italian Club, which should be accessible to out of towners. I don’t know the rules but there is a restaurant in there. Along National Circuit is the Hotel Realm, which has a restaurant and bar. Further along is the Hotel Kurrajong, which has another bar and another restaurant.

I can also add that the hotel has a restaurant and I had their eggs benedict the other day and it was delicious.

That’s it for now. I’ll try to update again with more information.


(note information has been added since the original post).



Alternative accommodation arrangements for Conflux

As of yesterday the hotel advised it had a few rooms left. We also promised to let you know of other accommodation in the area. As I had a query about this and did research to answer I’m going to provide it here.

Next door to Rydges Capital Hill is Bentley Suites, which are serviced apartments. The Wotif link is here.

One block over is the Hotel Realm and the Burbury Hotel, both modern and very swish. On Wotif they are $285 and $250 respectively. I’ll let you look them up yourselves!

The Brassy is a historical hotel, which is one block over and one back. Less than a ten minute walk. The Wotif link is here

Further down National Circuit on the other side of the National Press Club is the Hotel Kurrajong, which is another historical hotel. The Wotif link is here The Kurrajong is currently listed at under $150 per night.

For motel type accommodation there is the Forrest Hotel (and Forrest Apartments), which is across the road and about a 5 minute walk (next to the Italian Club). The Wotif link is here.

And the lower down the pay scale and about 20-25 minutes walk is Forest Lodge. The Wotif link is here.


Kind regards

Donna and Nicole

It’s 6 days folks!


Vote for the Ditmars and you could be a winner too!

It’s not just the people nominated that are winners in the Ditmars – you too could win!

Every one who votes goes into the draw to win:

  • Copies of Suited by Jo Anderton and The Rat-Corpse King by Lee Battersby (courtesy of Angry Robot Books)
  • A copy of Perfections by Kirstyn McDermott (courtesy of Xoum)
  • A copy of Salvage by Jason Nahrung (courtesy of Twelfth Planet Press)

That’s four of the six books nominated as the best published by an Australian author last year! Awesome.

NOTE: you don’t need to vote in every category, so don’t stop voting because you can only speak to one, two, or a few of the categories. Every vote that comes in, even for just one category, ensures that the work considered most excellent by the members will be the one that wins.


The Ditmar subcommittee are pleased to announce the ballot for the
Australian SF (“Ditmar”) Award for 2013. Voting has now opened, and will
remain open until one minute before midnight AEST (ie. 11.59pm, GMT+11), Thursday, 25th of April, 2013.

Note – every category also contains the option to vote no award should be granted, as per the Ditmar rules.

The 2013 ballot is as follows:

Best Novel
* Sea Hearts, Margo Lanagan (Allen & Unwin)
* Bitter Greens, Kate Forsyth (Random House Australia)
* Suited (The Veiled Worlds 2), Jo Anderton (Angry Robot)
* Salvage, Jason Nahrung (Twelfth Planet Press)
* Perfections, Kirstyn McDermott (Xoum)
* The Corpse-Rat King, Lee Battersby (Angry Robot)

Best Novella or Novelette
* “Flight 404”, Simon Petrie, in Flight 404/The Hunt for Red Leicester
(Peggy Bright Books)
* “Significant Dust”, Margo Lanagan, in Cracklescape (Twelfth Planet
* “Sky”, Kaaron Warren, in Through Splintered Walls (Twelfth Planet Press)

Best Short Story
* “Sanaa’s Army”, Joanne Anderton, in Bloodstones (Ticonderoga
* “The Wisdom of Ants”, Thoraiya Dyer, in Clarkesworld 75
* “The Bone Chime Song”, Joanne Anderton, in Light Touch Paper Stand
Clear (Peggy Bright Books)
* “Oracle’s Tower”, Faith Mudge, in To Spin a Darker Stair (FableCroft

Best Collected Work
* Cracklescape by Margo Lanagan, edited by Alisa Krasnostein (Twelfth
Planet Press)
* Epilogue, edited by Tehani Wessely (FableCroft Publishing)
* Through Splintered Walls by Kaaron Warren, edited by Alisa Krasnostein
(Twelfth Planet Press)
* Light Touch Paper Stand Clear, edited by Edwina Harvey and Simon
Petrie (Peggy Bright Books)
* Midnight and Moonshine by Lisa L. Hannett and Angela Slatter, edited
by Russell B. Farr (Ticonderoga Publications)
* The Year’s Best Australian Fantasy and Horror 2011, edited by Liz
Grzyb and Talie Helene (Ticonderoga Publications)

Best Artwork
* Cover art, Nick Stathopoulos, for Andromeda Spaceways Inflight
Magazine 56 (ASIM Collective)
* Cover art, Kathleen Jennings, for Midnight and Moonshine (Ticonderoga
* Illustrations, Adam Browne, for Pyrotechnicon (Coeur de Lion
* Cover art and illustrations, Kathleen Jennings, for To Spin a Darker
Stair (FableCroft Publishing)
* Cover art, Les Petersen, for Light Touch Paper Stand Clear (Peggy
Bright Books)

Best Fan Writer
* Alex Pierce, for body of work including reviews in Australian
Speculative Fiction in Focus
* Tansy Rayner Roberts, for body of work including reviews in Not If You
Were The Last Short Story On Earth
* Grant Watson, for body of work including the “Who50” series in The
* Sean Wright, for body of work including reviews in Adventures of a

Best Fan Artist
* Kathleen Jennings, for body of work including “The Dalek Game” and
“The Tamsyn Webb Sketchbook”

Best Fan Publication in Any Medium
* The Writer and the Critic, Kirstyn McDermott and Ian Mond
* Galactic Suburbia, Alisa Krasnostein, Tansy Rayner Roberts, and Alex
* Antipodean SF, Ion Newcombe
* The Coode Street Podcast, Jonathan Strahan and Gary K. Wolfe
* Snapshot 2012, Alisa Krasnostein, Kathryn Linge, David McDonald, Helen Merrick, Ian Mond, Jason Nahrung et. al.
* Australian Speculative Fiction in Focus, Alisa Krasnostein, Tehani
Wessely, et. al.
* Galactic Chat, Alisa Krasnostein, Tansy Rayner Roberts, and Sean Wright

Best New Talent
* David McDonald
* Faith Mudge
* Steve Cameron
* Stacey Larner

William Atheling Jr Award for Criticism or Review
* Alisa Krasnostein, Kathryn Linge, David McDonald, and Tehani Wessely, for review of Mira Grant’s Newsflesh, in ASIF
* Tansy Rayner Roberts, for “Historically Authentic Sexism in Fantasy.
Let’s Unpack That.”, in tor.com
* David McDonald, Tansy Rayner Roberts, and Tehani Wessely, for the “New Who in Conversation” series
* Liz Grzyb and Talie Helene, for “The Year in Review”, in The Year’s
Best Australian Fantasy and Horror 2011
* Rjurik Davidson, for “An Illusion in the Game for Survival”, a review
of Reamde by Neal Stephenson, in The Age

The official ballot paper, including postal address information, may be
downloaded as a PDF format file from:


Once voting opens, votes will be accepted via email to:


However, if possible, please vote online at:


Postal ballots will be distributed in the near future.

Voting for the Ditmar Award is conducted in accordance with the rules
specified at http://wiki.sf.org.au/Ditmar_rules, and is open to members
of Conflux 9 (including supporting members) and to members of
Continuum 8 who were eligible to vote in the 2011 Award. Voting in all
award categories is by the optional preferential system, and each
eligible individual may vote only once. All ballots (including emailed
ballots) should include the name and address of the voter. If you have
questions regarding the ballot or voting procedure, please email


Conflux Fan Fund Delegates

Conflux has two fan fund delegates coming to spend time with us.

Our GUFF (Going Under Fan Fund) delegate is Mihaela Marija Perković from Croatia. Mihaela is a Croatian fan who is downright crazy about Australia; she earned her degree with a paper on “SF tropes in Peter Carey’s short fiction”. Active in fandom since 2004, she has participated at Croatian conventions as lecturer, moderator and GoH host. She runs the SFERA Award Jury and writing workshops, is PR manager of SFera and SFeraKon, and coordinated Kontakt Special Track at Eurocon 2012. Enthusiastic, cheerful and chatty, she is an active blogger and lousy photographer. She plans to attend Swancon and Conflux, visit Sydney, Melbourne and New Zealand. Her report will be fun to read.

She’ll be on a few panels, as well as doing a presentation on Croation and non-English European literature and fandom.

Our NAFF (National Australian Fan Fund) delegate is Emma Kate, from Tasmania. Emma attended her first con in 2011, Swancon/Natcon 50, and this lead to a hankering to be more involved in the Australian spec fic community. So, she became an Aurealis Awards judge! She read fantasy novels in 2011and horror novels and short stories in 2012. The chance to attend Conflux 2013 would afford her the opportunity to meet the amazing authors whose works she’s been reading as well as share her love of spec fic with other fans. She blogs at emmakate.me and tweets @waqem.

Emma’s not on any panels yet but she will be!

Raising funds for future delegates is an important part of both ladies’ jobs, so if you get the opportunity help out so you can support this great cause of sending deserving fans to great cons!


Conflux media release – National science fiction writing festival set to blast off in Canberra


The 52nd Australian National Science Fiction Convention (NATCON) will be held in Canberra from 25-28 April 2013 at the Rydges Capital Hill hotel. As well as being the 2013 NATCON, the convention is the 9th Conflux, the annual Canberra speculative fiction convention.

Set to be the biggest sci-fi writing festival held this year, the event will feature workshops, panel sessions with Australian and international guests, a Regency-themed banquet, a masquerade disco and a steampunk high tea.

Conference co-chairs Donna Hanson and Nicole Murphy said the NATCON was coming to Canberra in 2013 to help the national capital celebrate its centenary. We pitched for NATCON to come to Canberra back in 2011. We are so excited it is almost here – some of the guests of honour have never appeared in Australia before and we can’t wait to hear what they have to say about the future of speculative fiction.

While the main focus of the conference is on writing, we welcome any fan of science fiction or fantasy. We’re thrilled that many of the participants are readers and fans. We’ve worked hard to make the program as inclusive as possible and we hope that we’ll see a lot of new faces at this year’s convention.

Not only will the panels and workshops be interesting, diverse and fun, but convention members also have the chance to express their creative side with a steampunk-themed high tea and a masquerade disco with the theme of “angels, junk, steam”.

The social events are a fabulous opportunity to get out your Edwardian or Regency costume (we just know you’ve got one in the back of your cupboard) and have a little fun as we celebrate the diversity of the Australian science and speculative fiction community.

We are also having a Regency Gothic banquet on the Friday night of the convention, which will feature authentic Regency-era food. The menu was prepared by local historian, Dr Gillian Polack.

For more information about the conference, to view the program and to register to attend, visit the website: www.conflux.org.au


Applications to pitch your work opening tomorrow

This year Conflux is offering attending members the opportunity to pitch their work to one of four people – agents Tara Wynne, Alex Adsett, Paul Landymore and publisher consultant Abigail Nathan.

To pitch, you need to be one of the first six people to nominate that you wish to pitch to that particular person.

How do you do that?

From tomorrow (Wednesday April 3), email conflux9 at gmail dot com with the three people you wish to pitch to, in order of preference.

Every opportunity will be made to give your first choice but as each person is only hearing six pitches in their session, that opportunity is limited.

Depending upon numbers, you may be limited to just one person.

To see what the pitch recievers are interested in considering, go to our Pitching webpage. Somethings to note – don’t waste time pitching your work to someone who is clearly not interested in your sub-genre or subject matter and pitch something that is ready to be read, or almost ready to be read, so if you are asked to send the manuscript you can get it to them as soon as possible.

Note – there’s a panel on pitching at 4.30pm on Thursday and Chris Andrews is running a workshop on developing pitches at 8am Friday April 26 to help you prepared. You MUST be an attending member of Conflux 9 to take up this opportunity.


Need a roomie?

Are you looking for someone to share with for Conflux 9?

Use the comments on this post to put yourself forward – ask and hopefully thou shalt receive.

If you are happy to have a room-mate and share the costs, then please read and respond.


Nalo Hopkinson in the Los Angeles Times

Get to know Conflux 9 Guest of Honour Nalo Hopkinson better thanks to this fantastic article from the Los Angeles Times.