about

© James Womack

Marian Womack is a bilingual writer. She is a graduate of the Clarion Writers Workshop, which she attended on a Susan C. Petrie scholarship, and of the Creative Writing Master degree at Cambridge University. She works for Cambridge University libraries, and her professional background is in academic libraries, having worked at Glasgow University Library, the Bodleian Library and several of its affiliates, as well as in archives and other repositories. Parallel to these activities, Marian worked in many areas connected to the book trade for nearly a decade in Spain, as a translator, desk editor, fiction publisher, and bookseller.

Marian’s writing is concerned with loss, nostalgia and nature. She has published speculative and hybrid fiction and poetry in Weird Fiction Review, Apex, LossLit, and the anthologies EcoPunk! Speculative Tales of Radical Futures, The Silent Garden Collective, and Year’s Best Weird Fiction (vol. 3). Her fiction has been performed, exhibited in Somerset House as part of an installation about activism and ecology, and translated into Italian. Marian’s short story ‘Kingfisher’ was nominated in 2019 for a BSFA Award, and her non-fiction can be read in New Internationalist, and Vol. 1 Brooklyn. She co-runs Calque Press, a micro-publishing project dedicated to translation, poetry, and nature writing. Her doctoral research looks at the intersections of eco-storytelling, independent publishing, and activism. 

Lost Objects, a collection of tales about ghosts, loss and landscape, is now available from Luna Press Publishing.

A longer biography of Marian is available here.

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INTERVIEWS:

REVIEWS – Lost Objects (2018):

  • Timothy J. Jarvis in Los Angeles Review of Books: “Addresses humankind’s senseless despoliation of its home in subtle, profoundly affecting ways”
  • Nina Allan in Interzone #276: “[T]he themes of climate change and ecological destruction are more urgently expressed in this short book than in any other I have recently read, yet it is Womack’s bravery in stating these themes in terms of poetry, of metaphysics, of personal loss that lifts them above polemic… a sequence of carefully curated pieces of writing that are intended to be read together… This book, with its sharp edges and its thematic urgency and its painful admissions of weakness and of fear, is a collection that highlights everything that speculative fiction, of all possible modes of literature, excels at.”
  • Laura Mauro in Black Static #65: “Lost Objects is a gorgeous, intelligent collection, both masterfully written and cannily prescient… and crafted in a manner that I suspect we will come to recognise as uniquely Womack.”
  • Rachel Cordasco: “I loved Lost Objects because of its exquisite prose, mesmerizing imagery, and apocalyptic/postapocalyptic vision that was anything but dark and depressing. Womack has the gift of bringing other/future worlds to life such that we lose ourselves completely in her vision… I hope to see much more from Womack because my brain demands more collections like this one.”
  • Simon Strantzas in his blog: “Marian Womack’s Lost Objects is a collection of short fiction that illuminates our emotional states of existence in this threatened world… Marian writes with an ear for emotional truth that resonates within the reader, and the book continues to reward even after the covers are closed. Another prime example of a first collection powerful enough to scar, and one you can expect to see on award short-lists next year.”
  • Leif Schenstead-Harris in Weird Fiction Review: “On balance, they offer much to a generous reader. In the effort, they continue the response that weird fiction shapes to the question of the Anthropocene (Capitalocene? Chthulucene?), even while they broaden the ambit of weird fiction by introducing new spaces and settings for creative imaginations… For a debut, Lost Objects looks to a great range of sources and shoulders an immense weight.”
  • Charles Payseur‘s blog: “[U]nderstated but incredibly powerful.”

REVIEWS – Short Fiction (2015-2018):

  • On “Nox Una”: “A story that is a compulsion to read – unusually ‘page-turning’, bearing in mind its rich and satisfying, sometimes constructively cloying, style of narrative.” Des Lewis Gestalt Real-Time Reviews
  • On “Orange Dogs”: “[F]illed with evocative passages.” Gary Fry.
  • “The best stories take innovative risks and have better payoffs… The eponymous “Orange Dogs” in Marian Womack’s tale are carnivorous butterflies, born in a future of floods and climate change.” Publishers Weekly
  • On “Orange Dogs”: “Haunting and half-engorged, a tale to savour.” Des Lewis Gestalt Real-Time Reviews
  • On “Frozen Planet”: “A dark, cold setting, with mirage and vision become indistinguishable. Descriptions are vivid, the ubiquitous snow displaying more colors than Lawrence had thought possible.” Locus Magazine
  • On “Black Isle”: “[E]choes  the most beautiful traditions of British language writing.” Strange Horizons