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Welcome to Kill Your Darlings Issue 20. As we head into summer, photos of weddings are popping up in our Instagram feeds, and this issue has a strong focus on marriage. Writers Connor Tomas O’Brien and Elizabeth Flux signed up to a seven week counselling course together – under false pretenses, pretending to be a married a couple – and their experience has inspired the first two pieces in this issue. Connor explores Social Services Minister Kevin Andrews’ Marriage Wars, while Elizabeth looks directly at the ‘Marriage Course’.

Elsewhere, Lou Heinrich looks at the reasons for taking a spouse’s surname and Sharon Hayes has a haunting investigation into romantic narratives and how they feed domestic violence.

As test cricket blares on the TV, sport figures in our summer issue too. Ender Baskan heads to the 2014 AFL Grand Final after the terror alert is raised. Kate Harper writes of her bewildering experience at World Wrestling Entertainment. Simon Castles asks, where are the Australian cricket novels?

Patrick Allington is in conversation with Peter Carey, after the release of his latest novel Amnesia. Nathan Smith revisits the work of Joan Didion in her 80th year.

In fiction, two powerful writers – Jessie Cole and Anna Spargo-Ryan – have new stories, which restlessly approach water.

Kill Your Darlings has been delighted to support new and emerging writers for the last twenty issues and we’re very excited by our new initiative. With the support of the Copyright Agency, we have commissioned three long form non-fiction works from three talented new voices. The writers were mentored by journalist and author Gideon Haigh, and we are excited to extract the three pieces here. The full works will be available on our website in late January, and, as always, we hope you revel in discovering this world of words. Happy reading and have a wonderful summer.

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