My satirical novel, TARGET 91, about American Gun Culture is being published in the USA by Penmore Press later this year. It is tragic I am writing this just after the news of another school mass shooting in the USA. The book based around the issue of assault rifles.
As an Aussie author of 20 books, I still had to work out how to introduce myself to an American audience. Here is my bio blurb introduction for the new book. More here.
And here are some pics of The Andy Griffith Show (1960 – 1968). It was a sitcom with heart about a widowed sheriff, his small son and a dumb deputy. I grew up in a household that was the The Andy Griffith Show times 5 (there were 5 kids) on crack cocaine. Not that we took drugs. But my family was crazy enough without chemical intervention. I did write 3 best selling books about growing up on a small police station in rural Australia.
While doing reasearch for a novel on American Gun Culture I discovered that following the Dunblane School mass-shooting in Scotalnd in 1996 (16 children and 1 teacher killed) the UK banned handguns totally. Following the Port Arthur mass-shooting in 1996 (35 killed) Australia banned all automatic and equivalent rifles and pump action shot guns. Other countries are not so fortunate.
When a friend returned from an overseas trip recently he told a story about travelling with his elderly mother in America. Filling out the immigration forms on the plane he said, flippantly, to his mother ‘Don’t worry about it. Just make sure you’ve ticked every box’. She did. It must have caused considerable excitement among the US immigration officials to come across a form where someone had answered ‘yes’ to the question ‘Are you a member or representative of a terrorist organization as currently designated by the U.S. Secretary of State?’ She also had a criminal record and a communicable disease. She procured for prostitution and was a drug addict. Needless to say, immigration officials were very interested in interviewing to her.
After some argy-bargy the immigration officials were finally convinced that she was not a criminal, drug-addicted, terrorist pimp, but a dithery, short-sighted elderly woman. So they let her into America. So there it is my friends. Be careful filling out those official forms. But if all else fails, claim you are a ‘short-sighted terrorist’.