|My debut collection of short stories, Catching the Barramundi, was published in November 2012 by Odyssey Books. It comprises eleven short stories and includes "The Intruder", which was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2011.|
In March 2013, Catching the Barramundi was longlisted for the Edge Hill Short Story Award. This is a prestigious award and is the only prize in the UK to recognise short story collections. Fellow authors on the longlist include Kevin Barry, winner of the Sunday Times Short Story Prize 2012, Emma Donoghue, Booker-nominated writer, and Jon McGregor, winner of the IMPAC Dublin Literary Award 2012.
Purchasing a copy of Catching the Barramundi
Catching the Barramundi can be purchased through Amazon:
You can get a glimpse of what Catching the Barramundi is about by looking at the book trailers. Book trailers work the same as they do for films - they give a visual idea of the tone, genre and feel of a book. Please click on the image and take a look - and I'd love to know what you think if you want to leave me a message on my Facebook page!
What people have said about Catching the Barramundi
1. "The short story is, of course, the perfect platform for honing in on a single emotion or dilemma, and Ms. Burns utilises the form perfectly to implant the buds of desire inside a fragile and still grieving character, and run with it [...]. It’s a lovely story, with a flavour of Raymond Carver to it, and I also love that it feels very Australian without ever trying to be." Rob Around Books, about the title story from the collection.
2. "[I]t seems clear that Ms Burns sincerely respects all of the individuals she's spent so much time living with in her creative head, even the more seemingly less likable characters such as the 'intruder' and the 'mirror man'. In addition, I really appreciate that the author doesn't hide her characters' melancholies or treat sadness as a despicable emotion to be whitewashed, but rather, as a reasonable reaction to private or public situations, one to be empathetically understood (or, at least, respectfully observed)." Terry Rogers, editor of Menda City Review.
3. "Burns paints a landscape of remote beauty and serenity to the reader, yet as her characters pine for the peace that this privacy affords them, they are simultaneously lonely and linger on in their seclusion long after it no longer serves them as a safe place to hide from self or others [...]. Reading Catching the Barramundi is like welcoming an old friend into one’s home [...]." Sherri Miller, Editor at Halfway Down the Stairs.
4. "There is much to commend in 'Catching the Barramundi'. Burns' prose is clean and laconic while adeptly evoking the desired atmosphere and feeling." The Word Runs Through It blog.
Catching the Barramundi on Pinterest
||"Catching the Barramundi" board
"The river slid by ominously and Connie looked out. The river, the fish, the life…there had been a shift. She seemed to appreciate the rough vitality of the water as if for the first time; it churned out towards the Gulf in a relentless fashion whilst she – she had chosen to stay put, where the life she knew was effectively over. Connie rubbed the wedding ring on her finger. The barramundi made one last jerking flap and she was drawn back to it, that strange man-woman fish now spilling its guts on Martyn’s legs. She felt she might cry."
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||"Loving Enid" board
"She likes to shock people that she’s met for the first time. Whether it’s with a carefully picked expletive, round and bouncy with fruitiness and dropped in at exactly the right time, or a not-so-sly poking out of her studded tongue – well, that much depends on her mood and the flow of the room. I thought – of course – that when I got to know her, she’d be a shy, stumbling little girl, clothing herself with barbs and spiky insults. But Enid just likes the thrill of it. Of making people gasp. She’s never quite grown out of the delight in causing a heavy tug on a stranger’s jaw."
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||"The Intruder" board
"When she first moved onto the beach, fifteen years ago, Ingrid liked to sit out on the sand as darkness fell and pick out the birds swooping over the sea. They were little balls of animation, lighting up the pale blue of her days. They were the only glinting things she could bear—she had given up making jewelry soon after moving into the cottage, money never being an issue—but soon even watching birds became hard. She wanted to wipe them away, to clean the air of them. Like the seaweed. It irritated her with its lines of green spit, so she started gathering it. She heaped it in piles at the end of the beach, far away from the cottage. It took a month before she accepted what a futile task it was, but the sweat and stretch of her muscles whilst rolling the seaweed together was welcome. Eventually though, the cottage drew Ingrid in, holding her in the folds of the walls. She stopped sitting on the beach with the birds for company. Instead, she lay in bed, smoothing her hand across the white plaster in an echo of the surf."
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