Monday, May 10, 2010
Forget the book, let's party
Yes, I am a terrible blogger and yes, I have been neglecting the blog. But my excuse remains the same, that I am slaving away on the catchily-titled 'BOOK 8'. I'm nearly finished the first draft but by Friday afternoon of last week I must confess I was a bit over it.
So the words of another Australian who writes books about Africa, Mr Frank Coates, seemed even more appropriate than ever. "I'm sick of all this writing stuff - let's party" was the subject line of a recent email Frank sent to me, and last Friday night was time to do just that.
Frank, and I got in touch with each other when we were both invited to go on separate cruises for P&O to talk at their on board Chapters Bookclub. We swapped stories of our experiences via email but hadn't met until last week.
Whereas my books are mostly set in southern Africa, Frank writes books set in East Africa. He lived and worked in Kenya for a while as a telecommunications engineer for the UN.
Frank and his charming partner and the diminutive Mrs Blog and I met up in Manly, at the Manly Wharf hotel and then adjourned across the road for an excellent seafood meal at Garfish. Several drinks were consumed and there was much talk about Africa.
It's hard, sometimes, for me to explain what it is that attracts me to Africa and what I like about writing, so it was good to meet Frank in the flesh at last. We sat there all night nodding at each other's stories and each knowing exactly what the other one was going on about. He's a top bloke and we got on well and are already talking about lunching, which could be dangerous.
You can read more about Frank and his books at his website, Footloose.
In other news, the PR machine at Macmillan is racing along in high gear as we get ready for the release of my new non fiction book, WAR DOGS, which is due out very soon, on June 1. It's the story of an aussie explosive sniffer dog handler, Shane Bryant, who works in Afghanistan.
And I'm just reading through the proof pages of THE DELTA, my new novel, which is due out in Australia in August, and in England in February 2011 (I just had to say that last bit as I am still very chuffed about my UK publishing deal).
What else... um, yes, that's right.. I'm off to Thailand and Cambodia for a week at the end of the month to do some research for my next (Top Secret) non fiction book. Can't say too much at the moment, or I'd have to kill you all, but at least a trip to South East Asia will give me something interesting to blog about.