FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
100 Stories for Queensland: Writers across the world rally for flood victims.
Brisbane, Australia 14th January, 2011, 10:40pm – unprecedented flooding in the Australian state brings the worldwide writing and publishing community together in the charity anthology 100 Stories for Queensland.
Queensland (Australia) is currently experiencing the worst flood event in its history with 75% of the state declared a disaster zone. Queensland is not a small state, measuring more than 1.72 million square kilometres (25% of Australia’s land mass). It is four times the size of Japan, nearly six times the size of the UK and more than twice the size of Texas in the USA. This is not a small flood or localised event. Its effects are being felt by more than 70 communities (including the capital city of Brisbane) and tens of thousands of people, many of them in rural areas. Other areas of the state have been flooded since before Christmas, with a number of communities West of Brisbane evacuated for the second time in two weeks.
Flash flooding in Toowoomba and Lockyer Valley saw a wall of water up to seven metres high surge through the CBD of Toowoomba and on into unsuspecting townships below, including Grantham, Murphys Creek and Postmans Ridge. In Brisbane more than 20,000 homes are inundated and the river, despite peaking below the 1974 height yesterday morning, is expected to remain at dangerous levels into the weekend.
16 people are confirmed dead and the death toll is expected to rise. More than 50 people remain unaccounted for.
100 Stories for Queensland is a charity anthology following in the footsteps of 100 Stories for Haiti and 50 Stories for Pakistan. The anthologies were created by Greg McQueen, who in the face of the devastation of the Haiti earthquake and the Pakistan flood, appealed to the global writing community to donate stories for the projects.
100 Stories for Queensland is headed by Brisbane resident and co-owner of eMergent Publishing, Jodi Cleghorn, and UK author, Trevor Belshaw. The management team is made up of Maureen Vincent-Northam, David W Robinson and Nick Daws who all worked on the Haiti and Pakistan anthologies with McQueen. They are assisted by a growing band of 20 volunteer readers and editors from across the globe. McQueen is working behind the scenes, organising the audio book and podcasts in conjunction with UK author and podcaster Em Newman.
Design and layout will be done in Western Australia with Russell B Farr founding editor of Ticonderoga Publications producing the cover art and Tehani Wessely founder of FableCroft, doing the inside design.
“I continue to be blown away by the generosity of people. And it is not just the sheer numbers of submissions arriving every hour, but all the people working behind the scenes. To date we have 30 people working in various roles from reading and editing, to layout and design,” Cleghorn said. “It makes me proud to work in the literary field. Writers, editors and publishers have big hearts, and they don’t think twice when you ask them to dig deep.”
Stories of 500 – 1000 words in all genres and for all age groups are welcome, and can be electronically lodged at Submishmash . The deadline for submissions is Friday, 28th January. The book is due for release late February/early March. 100% of profits will be donated to the Qld Premier’s Flood Relief Appeal.
Jodi Cleghorn (Australia)
Trevor Belshaw (UK)