I promised to keep readers of this blog up to date with progress on publication of the Bert Hinkler biography by Hachette Australia in 2013. Recently the publisher asked me to send a bio and a professionally taken photograph for the jacket cover and other publicity purposes. As a keen photographer myself, I found it interesting to be on the other side of the camera, but disconcerting to have to look at a wall-full of projected photos of myself and pick out the top three.
About the same time, I received a call about the book from the Bundaberg News Mail, which is of course located in Hinkler’s hometown, along with the Hinkler Hall of Aviation. I did an interview with a journalist from the newspaper, who asked if I could send a high-resolution photo of myself. Fortunately, the completed JPEGs were ready at the photographers that very afternoon, and I was able to email one to the News Mail. The photo and story were published the next day, under the headline, ‘Hinkler book set to take off’, and you can see the result here. (Just one correction: I am not a ‘retired academic’ – I am still a practising academic as well as a writer, and have recently finished a non-fiction book about ‘not retiring’ which is presently with my agent, Sophie Hamley, at Cameron Cresswell Agency in Sydney. Also, the title of the Hinkler biography has not yet been finalised.)
The call from the newspaper was initiated by Sandy Curtis, a well-published novelist and organiser of the Bundaberg writers’ festival, Writefest, where my Hinkler biography writing journey began a few years ago. It’s nice to be part of a writing community, even a scattered one.
By the way, have you seen the title of J K Rowling’s first adult novel, to be published shortly by Hachette? It’s called The casual vacancy and will be released worldwide in English on 27 September 2012 in hardback, ebook and on CD.