I’m delighted to let you know my second book is due to be released on 2 September. Now I know what you’re going to ask me, ‘Come on, Greg, what’s it about? Well it’s all true stories about my life in the Australian outback. Don’t you think the ‘real deal’ is better than make-believe (providing the stories are good of course)? Rest assured, its way more than fixing fences and chasing wild horses. And I only float in and out – there’s a lot more important stuff going on.
To start with it has a love story – two in fact. There’s also bush humour and practical jokes to burn, the pain and anguish of father–son relationships on the land, the devastation of Alzheimer’s disease, the joys and pain of boarding school, adventures in Europe, building a statewide chopper mustering business, the excitement, action and danger of mustering feral cattle, building a station business from scratch, raising a family, leaving the land because of the effects of climate change, marital breakup and consequent depression, working in the fly-in fly-out mining industry and an ode to a friend and neighbour who died way too young. There’s even a near-death experience that left me wondering if I would ever walk again or father kids, and the time, as a child, I witnessed my dad put a rifle to his temple. And that’s all way before we even start chasing the wild horses! I told you it’s powerful and the real deal.
Now there’s something else I need to explain that is very relevant to you. Are you ready for this?
I’m not a huge reader!
I read a bit of course, but not a huge amount. The positive of that for you is, I make sure I only put in the good bits – things that are worthwhile reading.
I feel honoured that you give me some time in this busy day and age, when there’s Netflix and the like at the press of a button. So when somebody gives me the respect, as an author, of buying my book and sitting down quietly to read it, it’s imperative to me that they not only get pleasure from reading it, but they get moved, they get affected, and it has a positive impact on them.
A wise adviser once said to me, and I have always kept it in mind, ‘Greg you have to catch the reader in your first paragraph or at least first page – nobody still wants to be reading about the colour of the bathroom tiles in Chapter Six’. I got what he said, and you can see that when you read my work.
I also ‘talk’ to my reader as I write. In an interview yesterday for the Weekly Times, which covers the regions of Victoria and New South Wales, Hanna, the journalist said, ‘It’s as if you are engaging your reader’. ‘Yes, I am,’ I replied. ‘I’m talking to them on paper.’ You’ll see what I mean.
As one of my kind reviewers said:
Greg your stories are wonderful, it bought tears to these eyes. You have a wonderful writing gift.
Painting pictures for us that most people have never seen/heard and a life that most cannot imagine, really fascinating.
The true story of your near-death experience as a child and then again as a younger man was gripping and well crafted, it pulls you in, and you can’t put it down, I could feel it all with you.
Now I’m prepared to bet the price of my book with you – even the toughest old bush blokes I know (and they would make a four-inch nail quiver, I tell you) – that you will shed a tear somewhere in this book. And if you come back to me with a review as to why that didn’t happen, I will buy you a beer. There you are.
And if you do enjoy it, as I hope you will, let us know with an online review. Like it or not, that’s how business is done nowadays.
I hope you enjoy.
Greg Keynes www.theflyingbushman.com