What can I possibly say about Margo Lanagan that you don’t already know? At Clarion South, she referred to me as a ‘witch’, and it was a compliment. She has been My Queen ever since. Margo is the award-winning author of the collections White Time, Black Juice, Red Spikes, and the novel Tender Morsels.
This was my entry for her in my Clarion South run down:
Week 3: Margo Lanagan (Australian Legend – no pressure)
Margo’s reputation arrived well ahead of her – we all knew who she was and what she’d achieved with her writing. And some of us were more scared than others. I was terrified. Sure, we’d shared a ToC in Dreaming Again, but man! She’s MARGO LANAGAN. Surely she was both talented and evil. Well, she was talented, mildly evil in a good way and wonderfully wicked. Some of our favourite quotes came from Margo, including: ‘Smells like nuns to me’ and ‘I love a good pile of bodies’. We learned from her ever-shifting list of banned words (and promptly used many of them the week after she was gone J). And we got to hear her reading from her new novel Tender Morsels, which was a treat.
And here, she is kind enough to answer my drive-by questions.
1. If I wasn’t a writer, I would be …
… a mortuary technician. I think working with the dead would be less embarrassing. But I still think people would edge away from me at parties when they heard what I was, as they regularly do now.
2. My greatest writing regret is …
… that I habitually bite off more than I can chew. I spent a good ten years writing enormous fantasy novels/series that crashed under their own weight, before Clarion West rescued me with short-story writing.
3. My five favourite authors are …
… Anne Tyler, Ursula Dubosarsky, Alan Garner, Helen Garner, William Mayne
4. If I could be anyone I wanted for a day, with no consequences, I would be ? and go ? and do ?
If I could be anyone I wanted for a day, with no consequences, I would be a professional musician of some kind. I would practise all day, meet friends at a restaurant for dinner, then attend a brilliant concert and go home all inspired.
5. Donuts (or doughnuts) or danishes?
Doughnuts or danishes? Definitely danishes. Cherry.
Her blog, Among Amid While, lives here.