Biographical Log of Michael Furstner - Page 159

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Tuesday & Wednesday, May 11 & 12 2010 (diary)

At my cabinb on the Mango farm, 2008 Last night (Tuesday) I watched the "Blockbusters & Bestsellers" book show on ABC TV in which Jennifer Byrnes was host to four best selling authors : Di Morrissey, Lee Child, Matthew Reilly and Bryce Courtenay.
They are typical "non literature" entertainment writers for the general public and are earning unashamedly (and why should they be?) millions of dollars.
I have read one book by Courtenay, but am unfamiliar with any of the others. They made some interesting comments with which I can identify.

Firstly, they all agree, the writer makes only 50% of a book. A book is not a book until it is read by a reader. Therefore both author and reader are necessary to make a book.
I totally agree with that. For years I have been thinking of keeping a daily diary, but never did because I always felt : what is the point of writing when nobody is reading it ?
It is only these last two and a half years since I have been producing this Blog, that I have been strongly motivated to write and to keep writing because you are reading it.

Di Morrissey, but quite a few years ago Secondly all four authors agree that there is no set or common formula for writing their books ("it should come from the heart"), but they do have one important thing in common : all work very hard at making their story easy to read.
Matthew Reilly confessed he had spent 13 months on honing his latest book to make it easier and easier to read.
Their general consensus was : the author must do all the hard work, so that the reader has an easy task reading the book. Some of the modern so-called "Literature" is too hard to read, which should not be so, they argue.

I too believe that if you want others to read what you write you should make it as easy as possible for them.
I do that here not only by trying to write well, but also by adding photos, illustrations and blue coloured text sections and by using more line breaks and paragraphs than strictly necessary, just to break up the text and let it breathe.

Thirdly they all cherish the unique emotional thread that connects them with each and every reader of their work. It is each reader's interpretation of what they write, which really brings the book to live.
This emotional connection is something precious all writers feel I believe, not just best selling authors.

I personally feel this very strongly, perhaps more strongly than most because my introvert nature. Writing for me establishes a life line, a line of communication with the "outer world" from inside my own world, the cocoon of my mind.

Finally writing a book is only a part of the work. The hard slug, and by far most important aspect is the promotion of the book and the author. Every aspect or avenue open should be followed up, from the apparently insignificant face to face encounters to radio, TV and journal interviews, Internet, etc.
Bryce Courtenay asks and writes down the address of every person who makes a positive comment on his work to him. Then, at the end of the year, he sends a complimentary copy of his latest book to every one on his list. This way he gives away around 2,500 copies each year.
Well, that is the reality of this modern world. It is not the quality that counts but the efforts and amount of money spent on promotion that bring eventual success.
If I were still in the prime of my life perhaps I would push harder to promote for example my music education materials (although I have never been very money orientated in my life).
But these days I am content, in fact feel hugely rewarded, by the large numbers of individuals, students, schools, teachers, music colleges and bridge clubs that enjoy my music, my writing and instructions on my website. And with some 25,000 individual visitors each week I have plenty of emotional strings spreading out all over the world.

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Thurday - Saturday, May 13 - 15 2010 (diary)

Bar Zushi, Casuarina NT Quiet days here in Darwin, but rather turbulent politics in Europe.
A most interesting outcome of the British election with a unusual Conservative/Liberal Democrat I have now in power. They look very sincere and in tackling by far the most important issue in the UK : the country's huge Government deficit, something former Labour Prime Minister Gordon Brown simply did not want to talk about, let alone address.

The Euro zone crisis is still continuing, despite the promise of a huge bailout sum to rescue Greece. Frankly, nobody believes that this will overcome Greece's problem in the long term. The country looks an absolute basket case. My forthcoming holiday to Germany is becoming cheaper and cheaper, the Aussie dollar now worth almost 72 Euro cents.

I am getting into a steady routine on Wednesdays and Saturdays. I first have a nice Japanese lunch at Bar Zushi in Casuarina and after that go for a swim in the Nightcliff pool. After my lunch I don't really feel like swimming, but I do it all the same. It is good exercise, especially for my left shoulder and arm which still trouble me somewhat.
Last week, surprise surprise, I met my friend Mary again in the pool. I had not seen her for about a year and assumed she had returned to Canada. But no, her husband's job has been made permanent now and Mary herself has applied for a job with the Auxiliary Police Force. She has to pass a fitness test and swims daily laps in the pool to get into shape for that. It was good to see her again.

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