So the 10-year anniversary of the Cronulla riots has come and gone – with nothing really going down – as expected. That means it’s time to put this project behind me and move on with a new one. And to be honest, I’m looking forward to it.
I was with SOTS for almost ten years. It was a wonderful, yet painful experience; lonely, challenging, but ultimately very fulfilling. The last month or so has been pretty full on. I organised print copies through a print/publisher and did that from scratch. The outcome has been fantastic – to hold a physical copy of your book is an amazing thing. Every word on the page belongs to you. I am much indebted to Dom who did the cover artwork, which is striking and really gives you the overall sense of what the novel is about.
I learnt a great deal during this particular self-publishing journey. While I’ve been really happy with the sales – the vast majority have been family and friends – who gently push others to buy. I realise it is still early in the game and it may still gain some form of popularity, however, I was pretty disappointed with mainstream media thoroughly ignoring it. I sent this book everywhere - flogged their social media pages and promoted the hell out of the concept in the two-weeks leading up to the anniversary. I wrote individually to most newspapers, to the ABC, SBS, etc. I sent free copies everywhere I could and even physical copies to Australian Surfing Life and Tracks Magazine. Maybe if I’d convinced them all it was a true story or based on true events – then they would have gone for it? Even the Sutherland Shire Leader ignored it…
What I’ve come to understand is that people have their view of the events at Cronulla. Many want to ignore it and move on. The media are happy to run with their version and some, like SBS and the ABC, also grab a University Lecture to discuss the matter – someone that has never lived in Cronulla, but clearly knows how stuff works down here… They are not interested in an insider’s viewpoint – especially the kind that perhaps clouds the populist views.
Sounds bitter? Just a little. I guess I found it interesting that no-one wanted to give an indie author a voice on something so popular.
Big thanks to Berkelouw at Cronulla who have stocked the novel (and sold out in one day). Hopefully, they’ll order some more and the novel will spread beyond my amazing family and friends.
Also a big thanks to those who have read and reviewed the novel – if you haven’t please do so! And also everyone who sent me a message to say they enjoyed the book – it makes my day (week).
Where to from here?
I’m halfway through the first draft of a new (much shorter) novel. Again, it’s ebook suicide – because it isn’t romance, science fiction, fantasy, or paranormal amish gay fiction (I’m not fucking kidding). It’s a coming of age story (again) – but a comedy, set in 1988. Think Revenge of the Nerds meets American Pie meets Catcher in the Rye.
I aim to have this one out by August next year (if my new baby lets me write). I also plan on getting through two new short stories for the Tales from The Midnight Pizza series. And then I’ve got a two-book horror/thriller series I want to get done – these will be considerably long and may take a few years to publish.