Welcome to Issue 21 of Kill Your Darlings. We have firmly left our teenage years behind and are now striding confidently – and optimistically – into our twenty-first issue and our sixth year of operation. Thank you for all of your support over the years. We are proud to still be bringing you quality, independent writing from the best, brightest and most exciting Australian writers. In this issue we cover topics as diverse as the politics of the selfie-stick, living with chronic illness and Kim Kardashian’s smartphone game.
Melanie Joosten has spent the last twelve months investigating the experience of ageing in Australia. In this issue’s feature essay, ‘Home at Last’, Melanie examines the hidden housing crisis that is affecting Australia’s elderly. In this eye-opening essay she looks at the Australian suburban dream of homeownership and the factors that are making this dream unachievable for Australia’s most vulnerable.
Elsewhere in Commentary, Michael Lindsey Davison looks at our need to document our existence in his essay ‘Selfie-Stick Syndrome’; Michelle Roger chronicles the reshaping of self that comes when living with a chronic illness; Kate Middleton takes us to Panama and Jessica Yu remembers her Uncle Fat-Fat in an unofficial eulogy. In an excerpt from his new Penguin short, Mistakes Were Made, Liam Pieper visits a psychic in Nimbin and Brodie Lancaster takes us into the addictive world of Glu Games’ Kim Kardashian: Hollywood.
We have new fiction from Omar Musa, author of Here Comes the Dogs. In ‘The Wasp’, Omar takes us underground in his quietly disturbing short story, which follows the journey of two subterranean graffiti artists. Contrastingly, Nathan Curnow observes the world from above in his flash fiction piece, ‘Watertower’.
In Review, Melissa Fagan looks at the American travel narrative in her examination of Cheryl Strayed’s Wild and Jon Krakauer’s Into the Wild; Doug Hendrie looks at the rise of African-Australian hip-hop and Jack Colwell spends time amongst Tori Amos’ superfans.
In this issue’s interview our new Interviews Editor, Gerard Elson, meets with Michel Faber to discuss grief, addiction and his latest – and final – novel, The Book of Strange New Things. I’d like to take a moment to thank Bethanie Blanchard for all her work for Kill Your Darlings. Beth was an outstanding Interviews Editor and we wish her luck in all her future writing adventures.
This issue also sees us welcoming our new Online Deputy Editor, Samantha Forge. Samantha has previously worked with Five Mile Press and the Digital Writers’ Festival and we’re excited to see her join the Killings team.