Posted by: Lisa Hill | January 23, 2011

Meet an Aussie Author: Steven Lang

The latest in my Meet an Aussie Author series is Steven Lang.

Now based in Queensland, Steven was born and raised in Scotland but has lived in Australia for nearly forty years.   Steven blogs at Unexpected Consequences and is the author of short stories, plays, two novels and a personal memoir of his journey down the Mary River in Queensland,  A Strong Brown God, (2010).

His debut novel, An Accidental Terrorist (2005) won a Queensland Premier’s award and the New South Wales Premier’s Award for Best First Novel.

88 Lines About 44 Women (2009) which I read and really enjoyed last year (see my review), was shortlisted for the 2010 NSW Premier’s Christina Stead Award for Fiction and for the Queensland Premier’s Literary Award for Fiction.

You can buy copies of these books direct from Steven on his website.  International buyers scan try online for An Accidental Terrorist but will find it harder to source the more recent novel overseas.

Now, meet Steven!

1.  I was born in Paisley, Scotland in 1951.

2.  When I was a child I decided I would be a writer because I loved the sound of words, I didn’t care what they meant or said, I just liked the way they sounded.

3.  I’m inspired to write by reading other people. Saul Bellow, who is one of my favourite writers said that ‘a writer is a reader moved to emulation.’

4.  I write in my very own studio about 70 m away from the house.

5.  I write every day, mostly in the morning, but really any time. If I don’t write for a few days it’s hard to start again.

6.  Research is not really part of my process. It’s a distraction more than anything else.

7.  I keep my published work in a bookshelf…

8.  On the day my first book was published, I went out and bought a new lap-top.

9.  At the moment, I’m completing a novel set both in Australia and on the South China Sea …

10.When I’m stuck for an idea I talk to myself, sometimes by typing into the computer, sometimes by sticking post-its on sheets of butcher paper, or, other times I go for a walk. Exercise is good for the mind.

It’s good to know that another novel is on the way –  thanks for participating, Steven!


  1. some great answers lisa I remember liking the 88 lines when you mention it must try him a new australian writer to try ,all the best stu


    • Ah yes, Stu *chuckle* Did I notice in your most impressive EOY summary that although you’ve read widely around the world that you need more authors from this far-flung corner of it? (Not that I can talk: I’ve got a long way to go before I’ve read as widely round the world as you have).


      • I am but past the few big aussie names I m lost one reason I love your blog is finding new writers to add to the list ,all the best stu


  2. Re. 2. When I was a child I decided I would be writer because I loved the sound of words, I didn’t care what they meant or said, I just liked the way they sounded.

    “I should say that I wanted to write poetry in the beginning because I had fallen in love with words. The first poems I knew were nursery rhymes, and before I could read them for myself I had come to love just the words of them, the words alone. What the words stood for, symbolised, or meant, was of very secondary importance; what mattered was the sound of them as I heard them for the first time on the lips of the remote and incomprehensible grown-ups … And these words were, to me, as the notes of bells …”

    – Dylan Thomas.

    t the wor


    • A universal view of words, for the poetically minded, eh?


      • I’m not sure, but now I’m curious. I wonder how many other writers would say the same? I think Malouf was getting at something similar when he suggested that readers respond to “the particular music” of a writer: “the particular tone of that writing, the particular density with which detail occurs in that writing, the span of sensory stuff in that writing.” It’s appealing, this idea of writing as a silent form of music, with the author as the instrument and ourselves as the players.


        • I can’t imagine Hemingway saying it…


  3. Interesting to note Steven is from Paisley. I had family living there during the time he was born, and wondered if Steven might have heard of the family name ROE? How can I get this message to him direct?


    • Hello Linda, I think the best thing to do would be to contact his publisher and ask them to forward your query on.


  4. How amazing is this thing called “Internet”??! I’d posted this same query in a couple of places, and have already had a kind email back from Steven himself. Problem solved, and the answer was “no, sorry.” Ah well! Thanks Lisa.


Please share your thoughts and join the conversation!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: