Good Energy

The guys at Good Energy have been really supportive and excited about the expedition, so much so that they have made a contribution which allows me to keep the blog regularly updated during the expedition, so they and everyone else can follow the journey. Good Energy supplies 100% renewable electricity sourced from wind, water, sun and sustainable biomass. CO2 from coal-fired electricity generation is one of the largest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions in the world. Switch your electricity supply to Good Energy using this link and not only will you be supporting the pioneering community of independent green generators, but for every sign up they get they’ll make another donation to help get the bus around the world. It helps you cut your personal CO2 emissions, helps them grow a great business, and helps me get round the world.

Friday, 15 October 2010

Writing Conspiracy

I have been complicit in a conspiracy.

This week I attended the Ubud Writers and Readers conference. Ubud is Bali’s answer to Glastonbury and Brighton. More yoga centres and organic buddhas that you can shake an Ayurvedic bush at. The writers festival was largely attended by readers, typically Australian women of a certain age, and in many cases a certain size, anxious to rub shoulders with their favourite authors. The atmosphere of divorcees on holiday with their girlfriends, enjoying their new found HRT-stoked freedom to express and be creative, infected the halls with a joyous vigour. Even the glibness of sunglassed authorrs weren't enough to quell the spirit.

I for my part had volunteered to get a free pass, avoiding the $350 ticket price, in exchange for helping out by setting up projectors at some of the presentations. Luckily for me, none of the workshops I had been allocated to, (How to write erotic fiction, How to read erotic fiction, and How to buy erotic fiction) needed to be enhanced with the use of a PowerPoint presentation. So aside from the extra shifts I helped out with, I really had nothing to do but pick the seminars I wanted to attend.

Along with my free pass I was also clutching a secret agenda. The idea of writing a book about my adventure is taking hold and this I figured would be a good place to figure out how to write a book and schmooze with publishers and agents.

I can safely say that the knowledge i need to write the erotic sections of the book I now have safely covered, but as for the rest of it I’m still hugely confused. The process of getting an agent and submitting to a publisher is a little less vague, and the faces and names of potential contacts might be one degree of separation closer now, but I only realised what the big question I wanted answering was at the end of the final session.

Daniel DeCruz, an Australian author who has written a runaway best seller about teenagers screwing and taking drugs in some party town down under (I forget where), was asked if he’d made any money from his book.

“A little bit.” He answered meekly.

So my question surfaced just as the moderator thanked everyone and drew the conference to a close. For a moment the burning urge to halt the ending and shout my question to the stage came close to overwhelming me, but instead I joined the conspiracy of silence that I realised all the other aspiring authors were complicit in from the start.

My question would have been; “So how do you sit at a computer day after day, without earning a penny, for months on end, knowing that you have maybe a 5% chance of getting anything but rejections letters back from publishers, and that if your book does get published and miraculously becomes a runaway success you might make ‘a little bit’ for all your efforts?”

I shared this with Christina who is in the throes of writing her first book, and she too realised this was also the question she’d been wanting answered all along. After the festival, she posed it to her editor on a skype call. The answer of course was obvious.

“Don’t ask that question Christina, ever.”


  1. Andy u don't any help for writing a book. You already write great!

  2. Self Publishing and Creative Marketing is the answer... You've been to some wonderful places, now go where no-one has been before...

  3. real and hysterical all at once... my answer (knowing absolutely nothing) is this.... keep writing, keep adventuring. make the adventures bigger and better, take risks, take pictures. and i guess that maybe also you should try to be erotic and go big, sex sells and yer lady is a mighty fine....


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