“the writing paints a lavishly vivid picture” – Angela Kirin
“powerful and poignant” – Readers’ Favorite
“Very real stories – you feel like you’re following the characters around.” – Liz Kingsbury McKeown
About All Because of You
Infused with gentle optimism, eleven uncompromising stories explore, each in its own way, the nature of sacrifice.
Mum and Nan struggle to contrive a sense of normal family life in the emotionally charged environment of a women’s shelter. A visual artist faces the return of her wayward daughter, who brings home her new boyfriend, the lumbering behemoth, Zol. A bereaved woman lies restless and alone in bed, her thoughts troubled by the plaintive cries of the dog locked in next-door’s laundry.
At once dark, poignant and witty, Isobel Blackthorn’s first collection of short stories depicts intimately and honestly the travails and heroic responses of women and men confronting the pith of their lives.
The Making of All Because of You
When I moved to Melbourne in 2009, I headed straight for the PC or the pen the moment I woke. Once I had completed a draft of my memoir Lovesick, a story I’d contained within myself as a matter of private reverie for two decades and then allowed to burst forth like an avalanche the moment I felt ready and brave enough to give it a voice, I turned my attention to short-story writing.
Two years on, and the result was All Because of You (Ginninderra Press, 2012 ), a collection of eight stories which depict intimately and honestly the travails and heroic responses of women and men confronting the pith of their lives.
Odyssey Books re-released the collection in 2016, with an additional three stories. Then Next Chapter re-published with another three, making fifteen stories in all, including ‘Nothing to Declare’ short-listed for the Ada Cambridge Prose Prize for biographical fiction, and others previously published in literary journals or reaching their shortlists.
I smile when I read these stories. Most are based on real events. When I taught at a high school my Principal used to tell others that I’d led a ‘rich and interesting life.’ We both knew the euphemism held secret so many tales. Little did we know how many more would unfold in my life.
But interesting events and experiences, which we all live through, do not necessarily make good stories. For that a huge amount of creative and editorial work must be done. Friends ask me how long a story takes to write. I try to imagine all the revisions, the readings, the puzzling over this or that sentence. Hours and hours, over weeks and months. What is the point? – Self-glorification or self-gratification. No. Writing is a compulsion. All artists seek to communicate. And all writers hope they have something worth saying, some insight or wit that will entertain and stimulate. Sometimes even cause a moment or two of reflection. Those moments make it all worthwhile.
Praise for All Because of You
“Blackthorn’s vocabulary is vast, but not without tender human emotion. The narrative is introspective – I could feel a victim’s pain and felt empathy because the writing paints a lavishly vivid picture. Blackthorn has mastered a lyrical gift of making every day routines or conversations seem interesting. Blackthorn has stylised trauma into art, where we come out questioning why some of us feel so entitled to make others hate themselves.” – Angela Kirin
“Powerful and poignant, Blackthorn presents several tableaux of life, reminding us that many of us are fighting various battles of our own with varying degrees of intensity and resolution. …One of my absolute favorites in the collection was The Moon Circle, a powerful and all too real story that leaves you reeling from beginning to end. It was incredibly powerful and evoked a strong visceral reaction from me.” 5 STARS – Readers’ Favorite
Paperback edition. http://mybook.to/allbecausepb
Large Print edition http://mybook.to/allbecauselp
Audiobook edition https://www.audible.com.au/pd/All-Because-of-You-Audiobook/B08KWHYSVY