Publishing Children’s Books in Australia

My recent post, prompted by a Twitter feed, listed some mostly American magazines which publish mostly non-fiction writing.

Since then, I’ve been browsing the internet for publishers closer to my home: Australia. I’ve found that this is a topic covered extensively by multiple people & sites. What they have said seemed to be worth sharing!

The focus in this post is on publishing children’s books.

This is not an exhaustive resource, it’s just the things that I’ve found so far. I may, or may not, add to it over time.

I’ve included links to articles and information that will be of interest to a range of different writers. I’ve made the links visible so that you can see where you’re going. Feel free to comment or message me links from your own searches that you’d like to add.

Advice for publishing Children’s Books, from the Children’s Book Council of Australia:

https://cbca.org.au/getting-published-for-authors-and-illustrators

A helpful step by step explanation video of one publishing process:

http://www.austinmacauley.com/how-become-author

What looks like a comprehensive list of Australian Publishers (not all of whom accept unsolicited submissions) by Creative Kids Tales:

https://www.creativekidstales.com.au/services/childrens-publishers-aus

Alys Jackson’s 2017 list of 24 Children’s Publishers:

http://alysjackson.com/20-childrens-publishers-accepting-unsolicited-manuscripts/

Following this trail also led to a list of UK Children’s Fiction Publishers compiled by Lou Treleven (2017):

https://loutreleaven.com/2010/07/21/childrens-publishers-accepting-unsolicited-manuscripts/

A list compiled by Ruth Dawkins in 2016:

http://www.beyondyourblog.com/15-australian-publications-to-submit-your-writing-to/

And, because some of the submission guidelines ask you to compare your work to other published works, here are 40 “favourites”:

https://childhood101.com/picture-books-australia/

 

Feel free to comment below, or yo can contact me via Social Media:

@Lyanna Spearwife on Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr

or email: Lyanna.Spearwife@outlook.com

 

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Demonstration: Lack of Net Neutrality

WordPress has provided the option to slow down the internet speed on posts, in order to illustrate what changes to Net Neutrality, recently proposed by the Government of the USA, will mean in real life.

WP Fight Net Neutrality

I was going to apply it to this post. Then I realised it would apply to my whole blog. I chickened out! I decided it wasn’t worth annoying the nice people who may read my lovingly crafted words! How could I do that to them? It would sabotage my work! I just couldn’t do it.

Imagine not having the choice!

Prior to publishing this, I imagined that it might be like my first experience of the internet, back in the 90’s. Hopefully without the squealing noises as it dialled up.

These days, we expect almost instant loading of whatever we search for. Isn’t it awesome? The processing power! The speed that the electric impulses travel from device to server and back again!

Big companies like Google and Facebook will remain largely unchanged, I believe. Yay! However, I wonder how much the scope of what they can show us will be reduced?

Small sites, like personal blogs and small businesses, may never be seen due to being a lower priority, and therefore incredibly slow. Blogs like this one have the advantage of being part of a larger site, but will that be enough?

What about all those who were brave enough to establish their own business site?

WordPress has an option to convert your site into a WordPress page. A helpful safe-haven, perhaps, but IT SHOULD NOT BE NECESSARY!

The world is richer because of the contributions that people make to it in various ways. Their work, their hobbies, their ideas, their relationships. What we see and read informs our thinking. Being able to access a variety of information and views is part of what makes us whole. It’s part of what makes us free.

We probably all agree that we aren’t interested in all of the gazillion pages on the internet. Some just don’t match our personal interests. BUT, we need for ALL pages to be “created equal” in the eyes of the Law, so that WE have the choice about what we see.

Otherwise, it’s effectively Censorship.

Selective, preferential treatment.

Someone else deciding what is suitable for us to access…

…and who is powerful enough to provide it.

People need Net Neutrality.   The world needs Net Neutrality.

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Want to get paid to publish your offbeat stuff? Here are some options:

This is a compilation of responses in a Twitter thread. It is largely unverified. I’ve used the most valid data available from the Twitter thread, and followed up only a few details.

This was completed 21 Jan 2018. It’s entirely possible, however, that I have missed some details or even whole publications. Please comment the changes and updates that you know of, and I’ll add them to the spreadsheet.

I encourage you to view the original information on Twitter at this URL: https://twitter.com/ambernoelle/status/953627906315517954

OP 21Jan18

To make finding information easier, this Compilation of Publishers is in an Excel document. (You might need to scroll up to the first record once it opens.) The categories are:

Mag name/ Twitter Handle Type of work published Payment Contact Person Confirmed seeking submissions Link provided Other info

The data in the linked Excel sheet has been sorted first by confirmation that the work is paid, then by confirmation that the Publisher is seeking &/or accepting pitches/ submissions from new authors, and lastly: alphabetically. You will be able to use the find function (ctrl F) and filters (arrows on column headings) to do your own searches. Please leave me comments about what this was like to use, so that if I ever do something similar in future, I can try to make it better. (Be nice!)

Where there is a “No” for “Confirmed seeking submissions”, it just means that a representative of the Publisher didn’t comment on the Twitter thread. You will need to find out for yourself whether they are accepting pitches and submissions, and what their process and guidelines are.

If they were provided, I have included contact details. Sometimes this is just the person who posted the suggestion, and they may not be able to tell you much more. Please check the thread if it’s not clear.

I have added any other information that was provided on Twitter. In a few instances, when I checked if it was a person or a publication being tagged, I found other information and have added that too.

I didn’t include the various comments and recommendations. You can read those in the thread. (You might also find the comments explaining why I’ve compiled this!)

One of the posters suggested that we read their site before pitching or submitting. I think that is excellent general advice, as this list is just that: a list. It’s a starting point for many of us. I hope it’s helpful for you.

Special thanks to Amber Sparks, @AmberNoelle, who asked the question, inspiring the attached responses. Cue cute green squeaky toys: “You have saved our lives! We are eternally grateful!”

Now: do your research and get pitching, writing and submitting!

 

Thoughts on ‘Bridget Jones’ Baby’

I watched ‘Bridget Jones’ Baby’ on the flight home from my recent holiday.
I’m glad that I’ve seen it, for completeness. It’s nice to have followed her story all the way through, even of the missing years are a bit disconcerting, and perhaps it’s a huge relief not to have to sit and cringe my way through them!
Note: “spoilers” ahead, but I’ve tried to keep them to a minimum.
This movie got more reactions from me than many movies I’ve seen recently, mostly because of the AWFUL cringeworthy moments (like Fawlty Towers), but some of it was quite heartfelt & real, and I cried.
The acting is perfect. Renee Zellweger gives a brave and convincing performance. Colin Firth and Patrick Dempsey are as dependable as always. Emma Thompson is her unfailing best. All of the supporting cast are great – I can’t fault any of them. They make a great ensemble of good performances. It’s just some storyline details I have issue with.
I liked the fact that Bridget finally got married to a man she loves and who loves her back. It would have been good to have ended the movie there, without the ‘diary entry’ voiceover. At that point there was closure, a neatly tidied ending for all of the characters, including both men.
I can see that it’s good literary structure/symmetry for Bridget to observe that she’s a “singleton no more”, because she began the series by describing herself disparagingly as a singleton.
But: the way it was put in there without expanding to reveal maturity or character growth just ruined the whole movie. Bridget was smug about being married, and smug about finally being smug. It was as though the whole point was to be married for the sake of putting it on her Resume.
If the message of the movie is: people don’t grow and change and they just stay stupid their entire lives, being rescued by better people (because both Mark and Jack are better people, not just richer, saner people), then that final diary entry achieved it.
However, I think there was much more to the movie. (There is probably more to the book too, but I haven’t read it.)
There were several points in the movie that illustrated how shallow and idiotic Bridget continues to be, eg. her thoughts as she walks along the street near the beginning of the movie. It’s a genuine struggle for people to lose weight, and it is an achievement, but it’s not a ‘life’s purpose’. Neither is getting married. That’s part of the point of Bridget as a character: we’re supposed to laugh at her. However, she also had moments of maturity and common sense.
Those moments of common sense were not at work. She did numerous ridiculous things at work. Not small things either. It really made me wonder how she’s survived there for so long, and why on earth she had such support and love from her colleagues.
We discover, this movie, where Bridget gets her silliness from: her mother & father are equally daft. We also see wonderful moments of Bridget asserting herself, and the genuine love her parents have for her. They listen. They take her seriously. These moments are evidence that Bridget is worth watching, there’s a heroine buried beneath the idiocy.
Bridget is remarkably mature in her approach to the baby, and in trying to handle the two possible fathers. The mayhem around this is entirely understandable. Perhaps her wedding veil is another example of her more mature approach to things. As was the eventual reveal of the reason that she and Mark had split before this movie. The fact that she actually had grown as a person made the last diary entry all the more irritating.
In the end, I need to remember that this movie is supposed to be a comedy. The fact that there is any character development at all amongst the verbal slapstick is a bonus.
It’s worth watching if you enjoy British comedy, and/or liked the first ‘Bridget Jones’ movies. I just wish they’d edited the ending of this one differently.

Wynonna Earp Finale Season 1: I Walk the Line

As might be expected, the Season Finale answered some questions, and raised some more! It resolved the issue of Willa as Bobo’s lead, but left us with Dolls, Wynonna and Waverly in peril! “Good is a moving target.”

If you haven’t seen the Season One Finale,  yet, be warned: this review is full of spoilers. You can watch it here (with your Syfy TV Provider), on CHCH.com, or catch up with the Official Recap.

What can I say that hasn’t already been said on Twitter during the Friday night live Tweeting? I’m sure I’ll find a few things!

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The episode began and ended with a trio: Doc, Wynonna and Dolls at the beginning, and Doc, Wynonna and Waverly at the end. In between, there were plenty of surprises, reveals and hints of more to come.

In typical Wynonna Earp style, humour alleviated the tension of what really was a terrifying situation. Wynonna’s “Not now Alan!” as she stopped her attacker, followed by Doc and Dolls throwing Wynonna out the window so smoothly, was adorable choreography!

One of the most charming parts of this episode is the Dolls and Doc Team-Up. They have so much respect and trust for each other, despite their obvious rivalry for Wynonna’s affections. When Doc and Dolls praise each other to Wynonna, it’s like they are her children, wanting Mummy’s approval of their working together, and she responds accordingly, although looking slightly puzzled:

“As long as you boys had fun.”

When Dolls was shot, Doc revealed how much he was looking after him:

“I brought your drugs. You are the laziest junkie I ever met.”

As it turns out, Dolls has two drugs, which seem to turn “on” and “off” the parts of him that he usually keeps “dead”. While we don’t yet know exactly what that is, he seems to be something like a Werewolf, with lizard eyes and super-strength. Doc switching it on was a serendipitous mistake, since that strength was exactly what they needed at the time.

Since we last saw Dolls in the back of the Black Badge truck, charged with treason (which Dolls reminded us earlier, carries the death penalty), we just have to hope that Wynonna and Doc can rescue him in time! They don’t seem to know that Purgatory is about to be obliterated on Lucado’s orders, and perhaps it will be up to Dolls to stop that. But: will he get the chance? Hopefully Bobo’s disappearance buys them some time: Dolls could say that he jumped out of the truck and ran back to Purgatory.

Dolls’ insistence that Wynonna not touch his wound was most likely to keep his secret from her. Perhaps she would have found “other” flesh, or become contaminated by his blood. Maybe he’s also sending her back to Doc? Doc did practically propose, while he and Wynonna were collecting weapons. Farming chickens and barley doesn’t sound particularly romantic, but it would be peaceful, and it was a definite “we”.

Wynonna manages to multi-task, having serious relationship discussions amidst managing a major crisis. She’s adamant that she’s not going to shoot the townspeople, nor Willa, if she can avoid it. But, as Doc so wisely says:

“Doing what’s right in the face of ridiculous odds…You are beginning to sound like a hero.”

Wynonna was truly heroic when she walked into the darkness to rescue Willa by shooting her. That giant python/land lamprey was determined to have the Earp heir. Peacemaker glowing blue instead of red seems to indicate that Willa is not going to the fires of hell, but somewhere else. Perhaps her violence is excused in recognition of the many influences on her, leading to her recent beliefs and actions. That surprises me, really.

Both the Nedleys were a surprise this episode: Chrissie, Waverly’s friend, kidnapping Waverly and holding her hostage was a shock. She had seemed to be better than that last time we saw her. Then again, she was under the influence of a psychotropic drug. It’s perhaps fortunate that she wasn’t worse!

Sheriff Nedley telling the crowd that Wynonna is “one of their own”, and “what we made her” actually brought tears to my eyes. The fact that they listened was a relief – presumably they hadn’t had as much to drink as some of the others.

Fortunately, Officer Haught also hadn’t been drinking. I might have been as relieved as she was when Doc told her what was going on, and Dolls’ saying:

“Agent Haught…welcome to the Black Badge Division”

It’s about time that Haught became an “official” part of the Team.

Haught’s bullet-proof vest has been a huge hit with fans! As are Waverly’s declaration of love, and Wynonna’s approval. Of course, in true Wynonna Earp style, these occur at very inconvenient moments, and amidst humour, such as Haught’s indignant “Kind of?”, and Wynonna’s “Yep, you guys do that!” Considering Wynonna’s reaction to Fish’s revelation, her quick acceptance is not surprising, even if it took her a while to figure it out.

Speaking of figuring things out, this is really a guess, but I have a feeling that Juan Carlo is an Angel. He sent Doc back to help Wynonna. He talked to Wynonna at the end and then actually disappeared. He talked to Bobo before Willa opened the door. Bobo has had about 130 years of being a Demon. He’s developed significant powers, including his telekenesis, and seems to know quite a bit about what’s going on, including “the rules”. He tells Juan Carlo: “You’re not allowed to interfere, remember?”, and Juan Carlo backs off. Bobo also asked Juan Carlo: “What are you going to do? Tell on me?” This seems to indicate that there is some power that Bobo is accountable to, that Juan Carlo has access to. Then again, Bobo seems to be mocking Juan Carlo with the question, so perhaps that power is no longer available?

Bobo tells Juan Carlo: “I can save [Willa].” Perhaps he is hoping to have Willa feel love instead of hate as she opens the door. Juan Carlo even looks like he pities Bobo, and his attempt to save the human who is “too far gone”. It seems that Bobo really does love Willa. “Swans mate for life.” Willa referring to the townspeople as “meat sticks” is possibly a hint of where her head is at. When Willa is talking about killing the entire town, Bobo says to her: “You’re one sick puppy, in your own way.” Presumably, the 13 years or so (she was taken at 13, and “released” by the Stone Witch before she turned 27) living in a tree-house affected Willa’s thinking. Even before that, she’d spent her life being “trained” by Ward. The little we’ve seen of that included emotional abuse.  Bobo swears that he didn’t hurt or molest Willa, and that they fell in love later. When they met and kissed, this episode, it was Willa who was in control. After their failed attempt to open the door, Bobo leans on Willa for comfort and support. Yet, while he has his good points, Bobo is still a demon. His way of thinking would have influenced Willa’s. What is particularly interesting is that Willa had another visitor in the tree-house, “whispering promises in the dark”, but she didn’t tell Bobo about it. It will be fascinating to find out who that was, and what they were promising. Was it Juan Carlo, trying to influence her for good? Was it another Revenant, and what could they promise? Was it the Stone Witch, with her own agenda? Or was it someone entirely unexpected? Whoever it was, it seems clear that Bobo wouldn’t have been happy about it.

While we’ve seen Bobo do some dreadful things, we’ve also heard that Lou was “too sadistic” for Bobo. We know that he manipulated a 6-year-old Waverly, but also that she was happier with him than with her parents, and he has never harmed her, even though he’s probably had many opportunities to. He even tells Waverly that he used to watch the girls, and wonder how “a man like Ward…” (who beat his wife, and made a deal with a demon) “…ended up with so much goodness.”

It seems that Waverly was a “bonus” bundle of goodness. It’s possible that Willa knows Waverly isn’t really her sister: She’s about 7 years older, and spent a lot of time with Ward. If she’s not an Earp, she could be a baby that Ward’s wife conceived with someone else, maybe even Bobo. (I hope not, because that would be creepy: his “wife” would be his daughter’s half-sister.) Considering that Waverly comments on her mother not even remembering her birthday, it’s more likely that Waverly is from some other family. It sounds like Ward didn’t pay much attention to her either, so she must have been “placed” there, the Earp’s agreeing to, rather than initiating the arrangement. (BTW, I think Ward probably killed his wife, not that she left.) Who, then, is Waverly, really? Why was she with the Earps?

Right now, of course, Waverly is the “evil black goo-possessed” girl who’s about to shoot Wynonna.

I have a feeling that the very serious look on Wynonna’s face when Waverly asked “Are you ready?” with such a beautific smile, might mean that Wynonna noticed something. She might not be completely surprised by Waverly pulling the gun. Even if she is, Doc is “the fastest draw in the West”, and hopefully will knock the gun from Waverly’s hand before she can do anything dreadful. This final scene, is, of course, just one of the many reasons that we need Season 2 of ‘Wynonna Earp’: There’s still so much of the story to be told.


If you’re looking for more about Wynonna Earp, I’d suggest that you look to Twitter, and the many accounts tweeting #WynonnaEarp.

If you’ve enjoyed the first season as much as I have, join the campaign to #RenewWynonnaEarp by Tweeting @Syfy. Besides random requests, here are some coordinated times to join in!

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With love to the Wynonna Earp cast, crew and fandom, and looking forward to Season 2 (fingers crossed!)

Lyanna

Wynonna Earp Images from Syfy, unless otherwise indicated.

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Follow me on Twitter @LyannaSpearwife

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Subscribe or Follow this blog to get regular updates

Wynonna Earp Review Episode 12: House of Memories

Willa’s memories have been gradually returning, as they are triggered by places and events. Waverly helped Willa get all her memories back when she took her to the house she’d been kept in, but is she still pleased about that now ?

If you haven’t seen the episode yet, be warned: this review is full of spoilers. You can watch it here (with your Syfy TV Provider), on CHCH.com, or catch up with the Official Recap.

Before I launch into my tirade about Willa, there were many other important developments this episode. Doc, Dolls, Wynonna, Waverly, Nicole, even Nedley and Champ all had significant moments, which are worth a mention.

Doc in Big Bubba’s clutches showed what a superhero he is. His superpowers include remaining calm enough to establish rapport, question and outwit his captor, as well as his incredible knife-throwing skills. Those same skills led to his capture (Bubba wanted a lesson!) and his escape. He managed to clean up in time to get to the party and try to save “everyone”, or at least a few.

Such a pity, then, that Doc arrived just in time to both save the day…and witness the long-awaited kiss between Dolls and Wynonna. Dolls admitted that he needed her, and Wynonna desperately needs to be needed. If Doc hadn’t left, perhaps Dolls wouldn’t have moved in, and perhaps Wynonna wouldn’t have let him. She cares about them both. Having only one available made that choice much simpler. They don’t really have time to discuss it, though, as they have to somehow deal with an entire town about to go nuts, chasing Wynonna!

Then, Waverly and Nicole kiss in public and no-one notices. Willa uses it as her opportunity to escape. Lost the sister you were supposed to be saving Waverly? Awkies! Never mind! Turns out: you were right to be afraid of her! Maybe Waverly really IS a good judge of character after all.

Funnily enough, Champ realised that Waverly and Nicole are an item before Wynonna did. Nedley’s reaction, although a little surprised, was gold. He’s not so bad after all! Poor Champ is heartbroken to see that Waverly has moved on. I don’t think it’s actually that he’s homophobic, I think it’s that he is upset at realising that he was never good enough for Waverly. One of the things he mentions is that Waverly always told him that it didn’t matter that he couldn’t get into the Policeforce, but now she’s dating a cop. He also says, when Waverly confronts him: “You think this is because she’s a girl?”, implying that her gender is irrelevant, there are other things causing the pain.

There’s a whole other kind of pain that Champ is now experiencing, thanks to Bobo’s poison. He’s probably lucky that Nicole cuffed him: it makes it harder for him to kill himself. Let’s hope the poison wears off, because, even if there really is an antidote, I’m pretty sure that Bobo didn’t leave any behind. He didn’t hang around for Wynonna to be delivered to him, and hand out the “reward” of the antidote. He was just stopping her from following him.

Now, about Willa!

Really, it’s all about Willa. Willa is the heir. Willa is Bobo’s “Lead”. Willa betrays her sisters…and the town, and, if taking Bobo outside the Ghost River Triangle means that he and his kind will “eat everything and everyone”, she’s betrayed the world!

I should have listened! There was chatter on social media about Willa being “evil”, and I was all: “She’s been through some difficult circumstances, she needs help to adjust.” She proved me wrong, didn’t she! So many times this episode, I was saying: “Dammit Willa!”

She shot Whiskey Jim, even after being told not to shoot people, because they needed to be more strategic. Her recklessness in killing Revenants (the bar, Whiskey Jim) indicated an impatience, but she also seemed to be hiding something, even though she perhaps didn’t know what it was herself! Killing Whiskey Jim stopped him from revealing anything else.

She was very rude to Nicole, chasing her away. Then, she walked in on Nicole and Waverly and, instead of saying “Oops! Sorry!” and running out of there like a decent person, she STAYED, and blackmailed Waverly. Again. No wonder Waverly is so unwilling to stand up for herself, if she was tormented by Willa when she was very young. (Willa was taken when Waverly was 6.)

Willa’s meanness to Nicole and Waverly, and to Dolls, were noticable, but understandable considering her life as an isolated captive. Willa said that she wanted to learn to be nicer, so it was forgivable. But Willa blackmailing Waverly over Nicole showed that she really is pretty sneaky and nasty. Willa cosying up to Wynonna isolates Waverly and makes her more vulnerable to Willa’s manipulations.

 

On the other hand, she’s spent about 15 years a prisoner: captured by The Seven, kept in a treehouse by Bobo, had her memory wiped by The Stone Witch and “freed” (not returned to her family, where Bobo could take her again), and kept in a cult commune by Lou. The last few days/weeks that she’s been with Wynonna and Waverly would also have seemed strange to her. And, from what Waverly says, it sounds like Willa wasn’t really an angel to start with. It seems likely that Willa has Stockholm Syndrome (feeling empathy for her captor, and siding with them), but it could be that she, like her daddy before her, sees the benefit of an alliance with Bobo, and she may have initiated it. Bobo seems to care about her more than just as a tool to use. Of course, he IS an evil demon so…

At the party, Willa was excited, and enjoying herself. She didn’t seem to share the concerns of Wynonna, Waverly and Dolls. In fact, she told them to wait…and DRINK. Willa hadn’t spoken with Bobo yet, but did someone else tip her off about the champagne? Surely Bobo wouldn’t risk her safety. When they met, he didn’t bother offering her an antidote. Does that mean that she wanted her sisters and friends to die a horrific death?

Perhaps she was innocently enjoying her first ever party, with no knowledge of what was going on. Somehow, I doubt it. I have a crazy theory, plucked from nowhere (as usual!) that perhaps the details of the party were so important to Bobo (the hotel, the ice sculpture, the “rivers of champagne”) were because Willa once told him that was how she pictured her wedding. If so, part of her excitement might have been the realisation that Bobo remembered, and did this “for her”. Yep: crazy theory from no-where, but it seemed more like a girl’s idea of a party than the idea of a 130 year old man who mostly lived in a trailer park, despite his business dealings and control over the town.

Willa left the party after Bobo set the whole, poisoned, “batshit crazy” town on Wynonna, and she went straight to Bobo! She had Peacemaker, she could have killed Bobo, and/or other people attacking Wynonna. Wynonna clearly wanted Waverly and Willa to be safe, and she had both Doc and Dolls with her, and Nicole and Nedly not far away. But Willa didn’t even offer, or protest.

Of course, Willa may have a secret plan to stop Bobo at the last minute. As someone reminded me: she IS an Earp. The question about Willa is: is she still an Earp on the side of good, playing a long game, like Anakin Skywalker, or has she turned completely to the dark side?

 

Next week’s Season Finale must surely reveal what we need to know.

Meanwhile, remember to remind @Syfy to #RenewWynonnaEarp, and tell them why it’s an awesome show.

18 June to 24 June has been deemed “Wynonna Earp Appreciation Week” by @WynonnaFans. The announcement Tweets are below.

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So, add your appreciation on Twitter, tweeting about/to these people on these days:

Saturday 18 June: Michael Eklund

Sunday 19 June: Shamier Anderson

Mon 20 June: Katherine Barrell and the show Writers

Tuesday 21 June: Tim Rozon and Beau Smith

Wednesday 22 June: Dominque Provost-Chalkley and the Special Effects

Thursday 23 June: Melanie Scrofano and the Music

Friday 24 June: Emily Andras and IDW Entertainment

Check out Twitter for daily updates.

Images from Syfy, unless otherwise indicated.

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Follow me on Twitter @LyannaSpearwife

and Facebook Lyanna Spearwife

Subscribe or Follow this blog to get regular updates

Wynonna Earp Review Episode 11: Landslide

Last week there were nice girls in white, this week there are nasty girls in black, and men in camo. It’s ‘all hands on guns’ at the Earps!

If you haven’t seen the episode yet, be warned: this review is full of spoilers. You can watch it here (with your Syfy TV Provider), or catch up with the Official Recap.

Despite the various adventures of the men of Purgatory, this week is all about sisters. Twin Vampire-ish-type Sirens, and the three Earp sisters.

Whatever the twins are, they’re clearly under Bobo’s control. For some reason, though, he’s kept them locked up for a year. Is that to reduce attention from the Police etc, from unexplained deaths? Does he keep them locked up in order to make them hungry, ready to attack on command? Perhaps they’re just too difficult to contain. Their release this time, as a favour to the Judge, is short-lived. They enjoyed a rich meal before Wynonna ended their time on earth. That seems like such a good thing, until we remember that Peacemaker’s kills resurrect when the next heir turns 27. Those twins might be back, badder than ever.

Meanwhile, all the badass Earp sisters are out-of-sorts this week. Willa’s return has been a shock for everyone. Gus is thrilled and hopeful, but Wynonna, Waverly, and Willa herself are having quite different reactions.

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Wynonna is feeling even more of a fraud than she did to begin with: she feels that she shouldn’t be the heir, because it was Willa’s job. Of course, earlier Waverly was jealous of Wynonna being the heir, because she felt perfectly capable. Suddenly she has TWO sisters who are the heir, but she still isn’t! Willa, on the other hand, once she remembers training to be the heir, can’t understand why they don’t just get on with shooting all the Revenants. All those years in isolation hasn’t brought her up to speed with the concepts of discretion and consequences in mainstream society. If you can call Purgatory “mainstream”. Wynonna says “Dolls is gonna kill us”, but in all seriousness, Black Badge might really kill them.

Added to the “heir” issue, there are also the sibling dynamics which resurface. It seems that Willa and Wynonna were close. Also: that Willa wasn’t very nice to her youngest sister. Perhaps Waverly felt left out then, which is making her resentful now. Willa observes that Waverly isn’t just distant, she’s afraid of her. As a child, Waverly was so angry and worried about the unhappiness in her family that Bobo chose her to be his accomplice. Perhaps it wasn’t just her fighting parents at issue. Willa, perhaps not surprisingly, seems to have quite a bit of anger of her own.

Bobo saving Willa, and then Willa asking about him, indicates that maybe Waverly wasn’t the only Earp sister that Bobo had a connection with. We previously found out that Ward and Bobo had a deal. We also previously found out that ‘The Seven’ were acting against Bobo’s wishes in hunting and killing heirs. Willa told us that Ward knew the homestead was going to be attacked that night. Presumably Bobo had found out the plan, and had counter-measures in place. No-one counted on Wynonna picking up Peacemaker, and it killing Ward. We don’t know yet what really happened to Willa. Perhaps she escaped into the Forest, and was “chosen by the light” as Wynonna was. Perhaps she was rescued from ‘The Seven’, but then taken to Lou instead of to Bobo. No doubt, future episodes will tell us more. After all she’s been through, it’s not surprising that Willa needs some time to readjust to her family and her life, but something does seem a bit “off”.

But really, what is going on with Bobo? His behaviour is so contradictory!

BoBo from Eklund Twitter

Bobo Del Ray, posted by Michael Eklund on Twitter this week

He collected strange green crystals from the Revenant Judge, but offered the Judge a deadly treat with the twins. (The Judge’s response indicated that he knew Bobo was trying to kill him.)

He was angry when he saw Willa in the phone video, but he saved Willa from the men the Judge sent, and told the Judge off for arranging it. This means he was monitoring what was going on at the Earp homestead, AND that he didn’t want Willa killed. Even PEacemaker only grazed him. Considering the shot it made to save Waverly, I think Peacemaker could have made the shot if it had really intended to kill Bobo, regardless of Wynonna being pushed over by Willa.

Bobo has someone inside Black Badge providing him with information, BUT it seems he doesn’t really want Dolls dead?

It seems that Bobo got Whiskey Jim to send Wynonna and Dolls to Lou, which is where they found Willa. I thought “the weapon” that Lou had was the killer skinchanger. Was Willa the “weapon”: a hostage to keep Bobo away? Did he send Wynonna to rescue her? Is Willa the “surprise” Bobo said he has for Wynonna? (I’m still expecting Ward to make an appearance.)

Dolls has been very supportive of Wynonna, getting the DNA test done quietly, and reminding her that she is still “the Earp [he] needs”. He’s also human enough to be affected by the twins, but with so much self-control that at the same time he can question them and restrain his inner reptile/whatever he is. Wynonna not being affected made me chuckle: perhaps it’s a good thing Waverly wasn’t there.

Dolls was pretty awesome in protecting Waverly when the house was attacked. He sprang into action like the pro that he is. Waverly wouldn’t have been shot, except that she tried to be a hero (again). Dolls had told her to go to the basement, away from the windows, and he told her to hide. Perhaps that is what triggered her rebellious reaction.

“Eat shit, shiteaters!” is a line which will surely be quoted far and wide. It’s almost up there with: “You underestimate my power.”

Meanwhile, Doc had tried to leave, but the car broke down at the border of the Ghost River Triangle. Who knows how long he waited before that mysterious man arrived to help. It’s a good thing that Doc can’t die from cold or starvation. (He can only die by a bullet, a blade or…was the third thing drowning?)

The mysterious “Good Samaritan”, Juan Carlo, obviously knew a lot more than he let on. He happened to have a fan-belt for Doc’s car. He knew about Wynonna and Purgatory. He knew about the significance of the Winter Solstice in 4 days, when “the gate opens”. (The gate of hell, letting more demons into Purgatory?) Juan Carlo had retrieved Doc’s Deputy Badge, & it wasn’t blacked by the fire he’d thrown it into. He also believes that it is important that Doc be by Wynonna’s side, fighting the Revenants.

It’s hard to know what choices Doc actually made, since the last words he spoke indicate that he kept the fan-belt, but it didn’t fix the car! Was it Juan Carlo who dragged Doc off at the end of the episode?

Let’s hope someone tells Wynonna about the Solstice and the gate, and Waverly can use her exceptional research skills to find out what it all means in time for them to stop that gate from opening.

Watch Wynonna Earp Fridays, 10pm/9c on Syfy in the US, and Monday at 9pm on CHCH in Canada. Episodes also stream live on CHCH.com in conjunction with the Syfy and CHCH broadcast airings.

Images from Syfy, unless otherwise indicated.

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