I discovered Anthony's second story, 'The Wine Endures' in my ASIM slush pile and knew it was the perfect story for me to edit for #50, the special issue of ASIM, to which we all contributed. In a small Greek village in the present day lives the god Pan, who is mostly a loopy old Greek Dad, with a beautiful daughter. He's perfectly okay, unless you let him get hold of wine...
It was such a sweet, gentle, funny story that I had to have it.
Anthony has gone from strength to strength since then, selling so many short stories that I've lost track of them all. As for his day job, it's one that doesn't give you a lot of time for doing something creative, so I really must dip me lid to him.
I'll let him tell you about it in his own words. Take it away, Anthony!
The story ‘The Wine Endures’ was published in the 50th Edition of ASIM in 2011. The story was my second publication, the first was just a couple of months earlier. If it’s any consolation, the two stories were written simultaneously. And they were also the first I’d written after my late teen years at uni – a very long hiatus.
At the time I felt drawn to both folk tale and legends, and I wanted to gently blur the two. I had heard of a village in Thessaly, where a friend of mine came from, where they officially had the Orthodox Church, yet my friend and his family claimed that they still prayed to Gods of the Classical world, not only the Olympians, but also other ancient deities like Pan. The story semi-wrote itself from there.
As for genre, not all of my stories fall into the speculative fiction category. My passion for reading has never been limited by genre boundaries – I read as much realism as spec-fic. A lot of my work though, for reasons I can’t completely fathom, gently drifts towards the fantastic or speculative.
I’ve a job that requires a lot of time, which I’m passionate about. So I’ve learnt to become disciplined in my holiday time, whereby I put aside most mornings for writing or editing.
I’ve been fortunate in my brief writing career. It’s been better than I ever envisioned or imagined. My third story, also published in 2011, was published in Overland Literary Journal 204 and was short listed for the Aurealis Award. It went on to be published in The Year’s Best Australian Fantasy & Horror, 2011. Since then I’ve had stories published in the literary journals: Overland again (214) and Meanjin; as well as numerous anthologies, including The Best Australian Stories, and also the latest volume of The Year’s Best Fantasy & Horror (2015). I’ve also had the pleasure of being in five Ticonderoga Publication anthologies. My most recent story found a home in the trans-Tasman anthology At the Edge ed Lee Murray & Dan Rabarts.
The two Overland stories ‘Reading Coffee’ and ‘Submerging’ are also being studied at both senior high school and tertiary level, which has been a pleasant surprise.