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The Background to "Breath"

By Tara Calaby
Dec 6, 2019 · 160 words · 1 minute

Photo by Teddy Thornton via Unsplash.

From the author: A short author's note on the writing of "Breath".


"Breath" was written in response to a submissions call for Undertow, an anthology of writing focused on the Gold Coast, in which pieces are based upon and accompanied by photographs from the Gold Coast City Council Local Studies Library. The picture that inspired "Breath" can be found here, five photos down from the top of the page, and shows a group of Girl Guides eating together while on a camping trip.

I love a traditional ghost story, and felt that the Australian bush was the perfect setting for this one. Australia isn't exactly overflowing with the ancient castles and monasteries favoured by European gothic writing, but it has its own wild and shadowy places. "Breath" is about the danger that lurks in the near and in the familiar, and that is something that holds true everywhere.

Helen Stubbs and Elizabeth Fitzgerald contributed their excellent editing skills to this piece and it is emphatically better for their input. 


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Tara Calaby

Tara Calaby writes speculative and historical fiction, usually featuring neurodiverse and/or queer protagonists.