Cultural Differences

I make a lot of promises about how I will post more, but always end up making a liar of myself.  I am really going to try from here on.  I am in a bit of a writing rut at the moment, so I am hoping that if I blog a little more maybe that will help me kick my arse into gear.

One thing that has been amusing me of late is what seems to be a spate of comments I've noticed on reviews of <i>Tigers and Devils</i> and <i>Tigerland</i> about the amount of drinking the characters do within the novels.

I come from an Irish family, and was born in Australia.  Drinking is a part of both cultures, but is seen as a fixture of socialising and chilling out.  I am not going to pretend that there aren't problems with binge-drinking and the like, and the violence that can come with that, but for the most part Australians are social drinkers and the majority don't take it to excess.

Which is why I'm astounded when I see people remark on Simon's drinking and label him an alcoholic, or a borderline alcoholic.  It just shows the marked cultural differences between countries, and what is seen as excessive by others is just part of the social norm for some.  Simon doesn't often get blind drunk – I really think the only time he does in both books is when he and Declan split up – which, really, is what a lot of people do in break-ups.  Having a drink with friends is just what one does, and I don't think that is really any different from most cultures – and that being said, I don't think Simon and Dec drink every day of their lives.

Compared to most people, I don't really drink that much.  So I find it interesting that this set of characters do, and were I more inclined to psychoanalyse myself I would wonder why that seeped into my writing.

But now I feel like a sloe gin and lemonade.

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EXTRA SPECIAL HAPPY CHRISTMAS APOCALYPSE BONUS FIC

The things that get dreamt up over veggie burgers and chips…

My good friend Kris asked, on the spur of the moment, for a special Christmas gift.  She wanted a story about Declan and Simon and the upcoming apocalypse.  And I can't really refuse Kris, because she can be scary sometimes.

One could call this crack!fic, but in essence it is a very Simon and Dec story.  Because of the basis of the story, it will only be available for free here and on my website (when I get around to updating it, barring the apocalypse).  It is probably your choice to accept it as canon or not, but I think it could be.  It is set after the events of Tigerland.

I hope we all survive into tomorrow.  I am going to see the apocalypse in with some pumpkin ale.  Go out in style, I always say.

I hope you enjoy the Countdown Until the End of the World.

ETA:  Some people are having problems with the first link.  Here is another.

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Technically….

It is release day here for Tigerland and my nails are already bitten down to the quick.

It's a worry, releasing a sequel to a book that people have told you they love – especially when they ask if there is ever going to be a second one. How can #2 live up to the first, especially when you always thought of it as a standalone book and the story as you envisioned it was told, done and dusted?

And I never ever ever thought there would be a Tigers sequel. I wasn't playing coy when I said so.  Sure, I still had Simon in my head telling me stuff, but I thought he was just keeping me updated. 

But here we are now, three and a half years later. 

Tigerland was written because I desperately needed an escape from the real world. Things were pretty tough, and to tell you the truth it still feels that way. I started writing little reunions with Simon and Dec, clichè of clichès, feeling like I was catching up with old friends. It was comforting, being ensconced amongst the old gang and finding out what was happening to them. I thought maybe they would just be a few short stories, but before I knew it a novel was forming.  

Both Tigers books were written in the aftermath of life changing events. Should there be a third, I hope its genesis is in lighter circumstances. Yes, Simon is still talking.  But who knows what will come of it?

I just hope Tigerland lives up to it all. 

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Tigerland Blurb

Hmm, for some reason the blurb isn't in the new edition of Tigers and Devils.

TIGERLAND

After an eventful and sometimes uncomfortably public courtship, Simon Murray and Declan Tyler settled into a comfortable life together. Now retired from the AFL, Declan works as a football commentator; Simon develops programs with queer content for a community television station.

Despite their public professional lives, Simon and Declan manage to keep their private life out of the spotlight. Their major concerns revolve around supporting their friends through infertility and relationship problems—until Greg Heyward, Declan’s ex-partner, outs himself in a transparent bid for attention.

Though Simon and Declan are furious with Greg and his media antics, they can’t agree on what to do about it. Declan insists they should maintain a dignified silence, but both he and Simon keep getting drawn into Heyward’s games. Simon and Declan will once again have to ride out the media storm before they can return their attention to what really matters: each other.

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An Open Letter from Simon Murray

Greetings!

Today they're re-releasing the book Tigers and Devils, originally brought out under an absurd nom de plume about three and a half years ago.  I was compelled to go back and make a few slight changes, mainly to make myself look funnier and slightly revise an ending which Dec had called "a bit rom-commy and not very realistic with what happened".  When I began speaking to him again three days later I realised he may have had a point.

For those of you who are wondering, there really aren't that many differences between the editions. It would have been too much hard work for a start – and I had just finished the follow-up to our story.  That will be released on October 15th, under the same 'author' that the first book was.  Part of me wanted to steal the glory back, but I've kind of become attached to 'Sean Kennedy'.  I envision him as this poor, sad little bastard that really has nothing else to look forward to so he might as well have his moment in the spotlight.

But, anyway, back to those changes.  They really aren't that different.  Just the ending has been shortened so there isn't so much will-they-won't-they-when-the-fuck-is-Kate-Hudson-going-to-appear malarkey.  Like Declan says, real life is sometimes a little more boring.  Although our life never really seems to be, as you will see come October.

So that's that.  You really don't have to buy this version if you are happy with the first one.  Although I do feel I have to remind you that Dec and I have a child to support.

Happy reading!
Love,
Simon

P.S.  Declan has forced me to come back into this entry and say that our 'child' is of the four-legged furry variety and she gets enough support as it is. He is such a fucking Pollyanna.  But in other ways, I guess he's okay.

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Tigers and Devils day

It may not be for the rest of the world, but it is officially for Australia!

Granted, the book may not be available for another twelve hours, but still…

Funnily enough the new postcards I had printed arrived yesterday. I also realised I fucked them up because the writing on the back is upside down. I'll try and fix that for the next batch.
postcard

I should probably arrange a few giveaways of the postcards, signed.  They look better than this piss poor rendition taken by my phone, I promise you.

Oh, and the blurb for Tigerland will be up at some point today! Stay tuned.

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Stuff

I have just sent in edits for Tigerland and now have a little breathing space before the next round.  I know I should probably start working on another manuscript but my brain seems to be in neutral at the moment and unable to even consider the possibility.

Tigers and Devils is re-released in two days and I've been informed the Tigerland blurb will be included in the back, so I will be able to share it then. The speculation of a lot of the clues I have been dropping may come to an end as some of them will be made obvious.

So I will leave you with one more: Who breaks their arm, and how is Simon involved?

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