AustLit logo
Tanya Vavilova Tanya Vavilova i(8953439 works by)
Gender: Female
The material on this page is available to AustLit subscribers. If you are a subscriber or are from a subscribing organisation, please log in to gain full access. To explore options for subscribing to this unique teaching, research, and publishing resource for Australian culture and storytelling, please contact us or find out more.

Works By

Preview all
1 1 y separately published work icon We are Speaking in Code Tanya Vavilova , Sydney : Brio Books , 2020 18436087 2020 selected work essay

'We Are Speaking in Code explores difference and deviance in the everyday through the lenses of mental illness, queerness and migrant identity. Weaving personal anecdotes with reflections on trauma, psychology and contemporary relationships this collection of essays catalogues, reconsiders and unravels ideas of belonging, identity and the way we operate in the world.

Opening with a visit ‘home’ to Moscow where she speaks an alphabet-soup Russian, Vavilova tries to connect with her mother and grandmother. The titular essay starts one of the central conversations of the book; what does it mean to be a migrant whose identity is impossible in the land of their forebears and highly complicated in their home. Vavilova also tackles the millennial preoccupations of finding meaningful paid work, navigating dating in the tech age and the perils of building a living as an artist.

'Bridging social, emotional and geographic distances, Vavilova’s essays look for ways to live on the edges, with grace, humour and lucid rage.'

Source: Publisher's blurb.

1 Motel 47 Tanya Vavilova , 2019 single work prose
— Appears in: Meniscus , vol. 7 no. 2 2019;
1 Bunny Tanya Vavilova , 2019 single work short story
— Appears in: Westerly , vol. 64 no. 2 2019; (p. 116-124)
1 y separately published work icon Grub and Other Short Stories Tanya Vavilova , Strawberry Hills : Spineless Wonders , 2019 17319201 2019 selected work short story

'Grub brings its focus to those things we don’t see, to the people on the edges of society who might be a little “grubby”. Its setting is Sydney’s inner west, in a not-too-distant future, where the looming concerns of today (like climate change and capitalism) have come to pass, and subsistence is commonplace. They range from light-hearted, such as ‘Grub’, where an obsession to cleanliness is taken to extremes, to much darker. In ‘Carpark’, a young queer boy is beaten up, watched by a couple from the safety of their apartment, and ‘Whipped Cream’ is a Handmaid’s Tale-type dystopia, with references to breeding and silver vans. Peopled with odd individuals, Grub examines our humanity (and sometimes, lack of) in extreme circumstances.'

Source: Publisher's blurb.

1 The Problem with Everything and Everyone (Me and You) Tanya Vavilova , 2019 single work autobiography
— Appears in: Meanjin , Winter vol. 78 no. 2 2019; (p. 95-99)
1 Artichoke Hearts Tanya Vavilova , 2019 single work short story
— Appears in: Mascara Literary Review , March no. 23 2019;
1 Levity : Seven Writers Look for Respite from Our Daily Doom and Gloom Josephine Rowe , Bobuq Sayed , Tom Lee , Tanya Vavilova , Rebecca Slater , David Finnigan , Nayuka Gorrie , 2018 selected work essay
— Appears in: The Lifted Brow , March no. 37 2018; (p. 53-63)

'Antidotes only exist out of necessity, given against something already present, already acting upon the body. Without the danger that calls them into action, they may hold no value for us—but when we need them, we need them desperately. This one-off series is designed to have antidotal properties, by collecting and dispatching a sustained chord of lighthearted positivity, written against a cultural moment that overwhelms and frightens and covfefes us daily. ‘A light when all lights are out’, ‘a welcome reprieve’, a cute story that plays at the end of the news telecast featuring the baby elephant at the zoo: these are some of the ways we describe such instances where the pressures upon us are alleviated, when we can avoid thinking about the gloomier realities of this life. But we wondered, what other kind of meaningful comforts might be possible? A writer friend recently spoke about the need to capture moments of levity—especially when working with subject matter that might be brutal or traumatic—moments that, however small, offer respite and a provisional hope.' (Introduction)

1 Two Silver Teapots Tanya Vavilova , 2015 single work short story
— Appears in: Seizure [Online] , August 2015;
X