Let’s be honest: unless you get lucky, you’re going to earn the square root of fuck all by being an author. So the only way to remain sane, and not take a hammer to the windscreen of every DB9 you see cruising past with some mouth-breathing troglodyte at the wheel just because he managed to get off the mine site without a dose of the clap and with his bankroll largely intact, (this is me not being bitter. You should see bitter…) is to divorce yourself from money and understand that it is only necessary to feel a sense of being rewarded for your work. Not all rewards have to be financial.

Which is my way of saying: I’ve worked for t-shirts.

Which is also my way of saying: it has been my inordinate pleasure to spend my recent evenings in the company of the delightfully baroque Pyrotechnicon- The Further Adventures of Cyrano de Bergerac by Himself (Dec’d) by the equally delightful and baroque Melbournian writer Adam Browne, which I am fortunate to be beta-reading.

Adam is an artist with words, what would flippantly be called a ‘wordsmith’ by those who don’t know just how fucking impossible it can be to build spires and rainbow bridges and gossamer spaceships using nothing more than a clear mental image and a sense that you’ll never, no matter how much you rage, describe it as perfectly as you see it in your mind. His short stories are invariably tours de force, and the novel manuscript– wonderfully illustrated by the man himself– is a perfect distillation of the soaring joy that Adam brings to his craft. The wordplay is joyous, the characters are exercises in bravado, and the whole thing is an explosion of bravura that has me rocking back in my chair and barking with mirth on a regular basis.

Pyrotechnicon is due to be released by one of my favourite small presses– Melbourne based Coeur de Lion— in September, as an ebook and limited print edition. If you’re after a taste of what to expect, Adam has been posting teaser illos on his blog over the past few months.

As Molly would say: do yourself a favour…

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