Simply Haiku: A Quarterly Journal of Haiku and Related Forms
Spring 2005, vol 3 no 1

Modern Haiga

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Janice Bostok ~

Sumi-e Birds

Janice Bostok was born in Mullumbimby, New South Wales, Australia, in 1942. In 1964 she married Silvester Bostok and moved to Cann River in Victoria. She has three children, one daughter and two sons. Today she is retired and lives near Murwillumbah.

She writes: " My interest in haiku was triggered in 1970 when an American pen friend sent me a Peter Pauper book of Japanese haiku in English translation. I had written some personal experience articles which had been published in the Australian Women's Weekly, as Reader's Stories. I had also been writing free verse. I found, however, that the short haiku poem from Japan (via the USA) had a greater affect on me than any longer verse that I had read at that time. I immediately began to write haiku and to my surprise they were accepted for publication in American haiku magazines. My first efforts were not as good as I imagined, but by their acceptance I was encouraged to continue writing and studying haiku in English."

In 1972 she began to edit TWEED, the first Australian magazine devoted to haiku, which was published from 1972 - 1979. Between 1980 - 1986 she studied and received a Bachelor of Arts degree with a double major in English Literature, from the University of Queensland.

Janice's poetry has been published in many international English language haiku magazines and she has a number of books. Her most recent publication is Amongst the Graffiti: Collected Haiku and Senryu 1972-2002, PostPress, Australia, 2003.

Her other interest is sumi-e. She writes: "I try to adapt some of its principles to my western sketches. Similar to the principles of haiku, sumi brush strokes are few and carefully placed. The use of white space is important to the composition of the painting, just as is the many words left unsaid in the haiku poem."

At various times Jan has been a member of the Haiku Society of America; The British Haiku Association; Ginyu, A Japanese Haiku Club; Paper Wasp Haiku Group, Australia; HaikuOz, The Haiku Society of Australia; The Fellowship of Australian Writers Queensland Inc.; and the Poetry Society of New Zealand. Currently she edits and judges for Stylus E-zine and the Yellow Moon Magazine.

A more extensive biography is found on her poetry website:

Information about Amongst the Graffiti can be found on the publisher's website: PostPress

Copyright 2005: Simply Haiku