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James and Ashley are staying at home. Partly because there’s a pandemic, partly because they’re writers, and partly because of their health. Through discussions and interviews, they explore the big questions: how do books get written? How do people live with chronic illness? And just what ARE you reading?

Ashley Kalagian Blunt is author of two books, How to Be Australian, a memoir, and My Name Is Revenge, a thriller novella and collected essays. My Name is Revenge was a finalist in the 2018 Carmel Bird Digital Literary Award, and was shortlisted for the 2019 Woollahra Digital Literary Awards. Her writing appears in Griffith Review, Sydney Review of Books, The Australian, The Big Issue, Westerly, Kill Your Darlings and more. She lives and works in Sydney, NSW. Find her on Twitter and Instagram or visit her website.

James McKenzie Watson won the 2021 Penguin Literary Prize for his novel Denizen, which also received a 2021 Varuna Residential Fellowship and 2021 KSP Fellowship, and was highly commended for the 2020 Writing NSW Varuna Fellowships. His short fiction has been recognised in competitions including the International InkTears Flash Fiction Contest and the Grieve Writing Competition, and featured in publications such as Baby Teeth Journal and Brave Voices Magazine. He works as a nurse in regional NSW. Find him on Twitter and Instagram or visit his website.

Ashley Kalagian Blunt and James McKenzie Watson

Jul 27, 2021

James and Ashley are interviewed by Amy Lovat of Secret Book Stuff (who they interviewed in episode 34), for Amy & Laura's radio show 'Reading Makes You Better in Bed.' In it, they discuss reading habits, the history of James and Ashley's podcast, and whether or not reading really does make you better in bed. This interview originally aired on Newcastle Live Radio on June 25 2021. 

You can learn more about Secret Book Stuff on their website, follow them on Instagram and Facebook, or explore their various radio shows/podcast appearances.

Books and authors discussed in this episode:

  • Song of the Crocodile by Nardi Simpson (interviewed in ep 18); 
  • Emotional Female by Yumiko Kadota (interviewed in ep 28); 
  • Of Gold and Dust by Samantha Wills; 
  • Far From the Tree by Andrew Solomon; 
  • The Shape of Sound by Fiona Murphy;   
  • Hitch by Kathryn Hind;
  • The Spill by Imbi Neeme;
  • The Rabbits by Sophie Overett; 
  • The End, My Struggle Book 6 by Karl Ove Knausgaard; 
  • David Vann (interviewed in ep 23)

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