Cat Hellisen is a South African SFF author living in Scotland who came along to chat with me about magic, selkies, agents, found family, and growing up in SA. We explore the themes of water, and how Cape Town and Johannesburg are like Edinburgh and Glasgow, as well as the implications of being a “privileged minority”. We also learn about shark alarms and how to issue a deathly insult in Afrikaans – not for the faint-hearted!

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Content Advisory: Strong language!

This Episode’s Guest


Cat Hellisen is the author of When the Sea is Rising Red, House of Sand and Secrets, Beastkeeper, Empty Monsters, and more recently Learning How to Drown, a short story collection. A South African who is now living in Scotland, she won the Short Story Day Africa award in 2015 and has been highly praised for her vivid words which skilfully mix the real world with the magical or weird. You can find her work for sale on Amazon or check out her author’s blog for occasional updates.

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Show Notes

References and extra info on what we were going on about. If there’s anything else you need explained, just comment below and we’ll add it in.

Stompie – a cigarette butt.
Marie biscuits – a bland tea biscuit
Crackling wine – cheap sweet wine popular with the underage.
Tassies – Tassenberg wine, also cheap.
Mullock heaps – Australian term. Spoil heaps often found around a historic mining town.
Muizenberg
Werewolf versus Shark league table

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