- Please introduce yourself. Tell us a little about the person behind the pen.
Began writing at roughly eight-years-of-age, but have been a full time writer for the past 16 years. Thus far, have completed 23 full length manuscripts, 146 short stories / novellas and numerous bush poems. I write an eclectic daily blog that encourages and hosts writers, authors, Human Rights lawyers, musicians, poets and others from around the world. The blog currently goes to 34 countries. I also mentor 43 young writers around Australia, write a monthly editorial for a newspaper and lecture to members of the U3A – University of The Third Age. Not only, I am a Human Rights activist and social justice campaigner.
Writing is a tough gig, but I’ve been fortunate to win some major awards. Not that they have done me any favours.
2. What made you decide to write (the genre of your book), were there any influencing factors, or were any of the stories based on true events.
My first book is modern / historical fiction for young adults. I wrote it hoping it might become a prescribed text for junior high school kids and, hoping kids would enjoy an enthralling story about drought, tough times and life in 1910 Australia – rather than reading a text book. Interestingly, the book has become loved by people from 8 to 80 years of age. Why historical fiction? I grew up on farms and have always had a great admiration for our pioneers.
3. How do you promote your book, and do you find that difficult or just par for the course.
Marketing is a necessary evil for an author. Sadly, it takes an author away from writing. Normally I promote my work by promoting and marketing my brand – Clancy Tucker. Book reviews in major newspapers and interviews like this have always been beneficial. I have a large contingent of followers on LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Google+. However, the search for the ‘silver bullet’ to success has alluded me.
4 Do you remember your first review and how it made you feel? (If it was a bad one, also tell about your good one too).
Yes, it was by an editor; not that I knew at the time. Her helpful comments made a lot of sense. I guess I’ve always been open to suggestions and advice, so I didn’t take any offence. Learning to take good advice onboard is paramount if you want to be the best writer you can be. I’ve had many top reviews.
5. Tell us about your book and if it’s a series and how the public is reacting to this book.
Yes, my first book, ‘Gunnedah Hero’, is part of a series. The sequel is already finished (A Drover’s Blanket) and I have at least another 15 stories to write in the series. Gunnedah Hero has won two awards in the Australian National Literary Awards and has been received well by all ages. It would make a magnificent movie for the entire family.
6. Can you share any and all links that are important to you as a person and the book? (You can relate more to a book if you know more about the author).
Book Reviews: http://clancytucker.blogspot.com.au/p/book-reviews.html
My Photography: http://clancytucker.blogspot.com.au/p/photography.html
My YouTube (book trailers and photography): http://www.youtube.com/user/1000teebee?feature=watch
7. I’ll wrap it up with this question since “7” is a lucky numberJ. Can you share an excerpt from your book, and I’d like to thank you so much for taking time to share your book with me. Please share as much as you’d like.Intro: Gunnedah Hero is about a 14 year-old boy, Smokey Danson who, during a severe drought in 1910, takes the remaining family cattle up what is known in Australia as ‘The Long Paddock’ – the public roads, searching for food and water to keep them alive. Smokey has a pack horse and three loyal cattle dogs. On the trip he experiences all sorts of disasters, suffers from loneliness, meets great people, finds a cache of gold, is a key witness in a double murder case and is hailed the Gunnedah Hero.
“The snake became more and more aggressive and unpredictable. Sam was growling deeper now and had crouched on the ground in the attack position. Roscoe and Jedda were also awake, aware of the slippery predator and barking loudly. Their noise didn’t help the situation. In a split second, Sam attacked the snake and I felt its cold tail crease my forehead as it writhed in battle. I took a chance, got to my feet and jumped to a safe place on the other side of the campfire. While my brave kelpie fought the snake, I searched for a large piece of timber that would do the reptile some damage. Normally I’d have used the stockwhip to kill it, but Sam was too close. I was petrified I’d strike her by mistake.
I grabbed a sizeable piece of lumber and turned back to the verandah. As I swivelled around I heard a piercing squeal and saw Sam limp away. She flopped under the lemon tree and frantically rubbed her snout with both paws. The snake had been badly mauled by her sharp teeth but it was still writhing close to my saddle, smearing blood on the floorboards of the verandah. I was furious and smashed the snake with the timber at least half a dozen times. It was still moving so I thumped it another three times until it was dead. Roscoe and Jedda sniffed at its messy remains while I dashed towards Sam. It was too late. She was dead.
Tears welled in my eyes as I pulled her from beneath the tree where she’d sought refuge. I tucked her in my arms and walked to the back of the house where I found a piece of rusty steel to dig a grave. Jedda and Roscoe looked on as I buried my brave cattle dog. Covering her with dusty soil, I erected a crudely-made cross from two flat boards I found nearby then scrawled ‘Sam Danson’ across it with a piece of charcoal I’d rescued from the campfire. I squatted on the parched earth and wept, overcome by an enormous sense of loss.”
***Clancy is a wonderful, humble man whom I look up to quite a bit. I strongly recommend that you check out his book and his links.