Photo of a nice man in a yellow shirt being hugged by a handsome young boy in an outdoor courtyard, surrounded by launch attendees

And just like that, Curiouser Magazine was officially introduced to the world at Low Key, a nice little cocktail bar in Northcote, Victoria. Earlier that afternoon, as I perused the aisles of the supermarket to purchase snacks for the launch party, my stomach was doing backflips of terror – I literally had no idea what to expect. Was anybody going to show up? Was it going to be fun? Was anybody going to actually purchase this thing I’d been working on for the last six months?

Yes, imposter syndrome was rearing its ugly head, and as I’ve learned to do countless times since September 2020, I talked myself down. “It’s a lovely book,” I said. “I put together a pretty ace publication, and I think people are going to like it.”

Luckily, I have attended many book launches in the past, and I knew some of the basic tenets: snacks are very important, someone besides me has to say something, and at the end of the shindig, do a lot of thanking. I can totally do this! After all, I mused, I’ve pretty much been making it up as I’ve gone along – this launch should be a piece of cake.

I needn’t have worried about the launch. A lot of people showed up, and I kicked things off by reading the opening poem in the book, ‘Conversation with Rothko’ by Georgian poet L. Ward Abel. I managed to convey the gist of the collection itself and tie it to the poem’s theme of humanity and where we belong in the world. The snacks were a success. One of my authors was present, the wonderful Ella Salome, who read a passage from her short story ‘Old Man’s Head‘, and then I closed out with a lot of heartfelt thanks to everybody who showed up, the staff at Low Key, the printers who printed my book, and all that good stuff you’re supposed to do at a launch. People even bought copies!

Copies of a book, Curiouser Magazine, piled in an appealing manner on a tan carpet.

It really is a lovely book, I do keep telling myself when imposter syndrome sneaks up on me. And, I add, when it’s time for the launch of Issue Two sometime in October later this year, I’ll know exactly what to do!

Stay tuned for the occasional follow-up to this post where I’ll discuss various lessons I’ve learned during the creation of this anthology, as well as various anecdotes. I’ll not bombard your inboxes, so if you’d like to follow along, then go for it.

And, of course, if you want to buy a book I have a couple of boxes left – a copy would look absolutely dashing on your shelves. You can purchase one here. Thanks for reading, and enjoy the rest of your day.