An additional question for Michael Gardner

Q: Can beautiful things be funny?

A: I think funny moments can be beautiful, so beautiful things must be funny.

As an example, I was trying not to laugh at my daughter the other day who was doing her best to avoid going to bed. I failed in my attempt to be stern, and ended up laughing at her antics, which made her laugh in return. I was wondering where she got her cheeky sense of humour. And in that moment, I realised she was growing up in front of me, becoming her own, unique person. I couldn’t help but think that sharing such a moment in her life was beautiful. As well as being funny.


Michael Gardner’s story “All That Remains
in Metaphorosis Friday, 21 August 2020.
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Further about Michael Gardner

Michael Gardner is an economist by day, a writer of fantasy and horror by night. He lives in Canberra, Australia, with his patient wife and two wonderful kids. The experience of fatherhood continues to find its way into his stories. His work has appeared in Writers of the Future Volume 36, Aurealis, and of course, Metaphorosis. He is also a two-time finalist for the Aurealis Awards. You can find out more about Michael and his work at www.michael-s-gardner.com.


Michael Gardner’s story “All That Remains
in Metaphorosis Friday, 21 August 2020.
Subscribe now for e-mail updates!

August 2020

MetaphorosisTable of Contents

  • Calling Me Home — Spencer Nitkey
  • Devilish Calliope and the Ungrooviest Apocalypse — Evan Marcroft
  • All That Remains — Michael Gardner
  • Joy (Unplugged) — B.C. van Tol

Cover art by Melissa Kojima.

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It came from Michael Gardner (yet again)

Michael Gardner’s story “Nana Naoko’s Garden” was published in Metaphorosis on Friday, 12 October 2018. My own Nana is a fantastic gardener. The garden she had when I was a kid was amazing. A huge, sprawling garden filled with trees, shrubs, flowers and neatly manicured lawns. It had so many elements that seemed magical, including a fernery along the back of her house, a small bridge and goldfish pond, vegetable patches that my Papa tended …

Nana Naoko’s Garden – Michael Gardner

I pushed the little girl on the rope swing, guessing she couldn’t be more than seven, knowing she was my mother. The swing groaned as it arced forward, then back, the rope twisting against the bough of the mulberry tree. We were on the periphery of a country garden that surrounded a large, off-white homestead. Beyond the house were barren paddocks — dry grass, sheep, the odd gum tree. I knew this place from Nana …

Yet another question for Michael Gardner

Q: If you could talk to your novice-writer self, what bit of advice would you give?

A: I still feel like a novice-writer. My advice to me right now is to write better, to learn to articulate your ideas with a little more poetry and elegance, maybe buy a cat – all of the best writers seem to own a cat.

But I’m guessing the spirit of this question relates to what advice I would provide to my younger self when I first began writing fiction.

I only wrote sporadically when I was younger. And for that reason, I’d tell my younger self not to waste so much time. I’d tell me to write more often, to get into a routine and practice as much as I could as early as I could. I think doing so would have helped me learn a lot more about story telling by now.

I think one of the main reasons I didn’t write as much as I would have liked was because I didn’t know what to do with the stories I produced, other than force some of my friends to read them. So I’d also tell my younger self about these wonderful online magazines that might, one day, actually buy one of the stories you’re writing and publish it.

Writing is foremost about my own enjoyment, but I get such a buzz from realising others might read them, and hopefully enjoy them. And I’m grateful to magazines like Metaphorosis for publishing some of them.


Michael Gardner’s story “Nana Naoko’s Garden” was
published on Friday, 12 October 2018.

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