Great Ocean Quarterly – dive in deep

Great Ocean Quarterly, the much-loved but short-lived magazine of ‘Art, Ideas and The Sea’ has made a brief return, after having to close its doors in 2015.

GOQ has just published what it calls its ‘Lost Eighth’ edition, the edition that was ready to hit the presses five years ago before the reality of bills and expenses hit hard. GOQ was never one to cut corners, with its attention to detail in its stories, its superb photography and design, and its eco-friendly but expensive paper stock.

In the intervening years the magazine’s cornerstones experienced triumph and tragedy.  Editor Jock Serong won acclaim for a series of novels, the latest being this year’s The Burning Island. The magazine’s founder, creative director Mick Sowry, however, lost his wife, Sue. The ‘Lost Eighth’ is dedicated to her, to the wish ‘to make something good out of grief’.

As it always did, this edition of the quarterly roams far and wide in its stories of the sea. A Russian expert on jellyfish and invertebrates who is based at the icy White Sea Biological Station. An Irishman who documents those hardy souls who swim each and every day. A glimpse into the making of the Warwick Thornton series The Beach. Poems, stories, essays. Music. Photography.

Contributors include Gregory Day (Mislaid Books of The Sea), Lorin Clarke (writing about her father John’s love of bodysurfing), Tim Winton (an extract from his 2017 memoir The Boy Behind The Curtain), and marine scientist Dr Inke Faulkner, who takes us deep underneath Sydney Harbour.

Funded by a Pozible campaign, this limited edition of Great Ocean Quarterly, not only reminds us of the beauty, mystery and importance of the ocean but the loveliness of quality magazine production.

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