Sunday, October 19, 2014

For The First Fans

Christmas In Canada has been released and the tour is about to start. On this tour I'll be accompanied by my father, visiting from Australia. The irony of an Australian living in Southern California doing a tour about Christmas in Canada has not been lost

  Book tours are made for a variety of reasons, and in this instance, the book tour is not about my name on the cover, it's about the promotion of the title. 34 authors will meet to take part at the book signing in Toronto on November 4th, I will be one of a few traveling internationally. So why go?

  For the first fans.

  There are fans of "my" writing all over the world, those people who know of, or who found my writing and identified with it. There's my friends who are cheering me on. There's my daughters, some who walk around showing off the book, others who may one day get asked "did your Dad write this?" There's the distant contacts, the ones who know me through someone else. But the ones that I am endeared to the most are those who I should have treated better, and who still cheer for me.

  They are the first fans. Thank you, for your belief.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Christmas in Canada Released

  Chicken Soup for the Soul's latest release Christmas in Canada.

  The irony of an Australian living in Southern California writing about Christmas in Canada has not been lost.

  Tour dates as follows:

  Salt Lake City, Utah:  October 25 (to be confirmed)
  Santee, California:  October 27 (to be confirmed)
  Toronto, Canada:  November 2.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

I Got a Pay Rise - Item One.

  On November 17, 2013, I wrote a blog entry titled "I Got a Pay Rise Today." *

  It spoke of how for the first time since August 1994,  I was able to keep all my of my wage earnings with the end of Child Support. I however, had paid a heavier price than just cash. I had lost the two children I had brought into the world, to the indoctrination by their mother and grandmother, that I never paid Child Support. The girls had believed their mother and grandmother, (for I was not present to supply a rebuttal), and both daughters having reached adulthood, decided that my blog entry was lie, and now neither talk to me.

  What both my daughters failed to recognize, is that neither the blog entry or Child Support was ever about them. There is a system in place that ensures that Child Support is always paid. Neither of the girls missed out, and neither of the girls went without. And contrary to what they may have been told, the required level of Child Support was always paid, as overseen by the government system that required my payment.

  It is hard to fathom that anyone would believe that I never paid Child Support, in the face of wage garnishments, receipts for payments and annual reviews. If anything, I made the government system honest, by maintaining a constant review, ensuring that documentation was provided in a timely manner, and, most importantly, by pursing those that did wrong, acted unlawfully or outside of legislation. The system that required me to pay child support, was not going to receive anything more than legislative requirements.

  The cost to me, of ensuring accurate compliance, was the loss of access to my children, once they became adults.

  However, the end of Child Support was a catalyst for other events. While paying Child Support, I never bought a new car, never owned a house, and never had a book published. The end of Child Support has allowed me to cross one of those items off my list. On September 29, 2014, I purchased a brand new Volkswagen Beetle.

  The irony is, the car was purchased by me, for someone else. I haven't driven it, I don't need to. That car brings joy to another family member, not just because "it's a new car", but because they understand what I went without, until the day when I Got A Pay Rise.

 * The server which held a body of work, including that blog entry, has since closed. The blog entry now exists in a preserved cache state.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

43 Years Waiting to Watch TV With My Father

  In September of 1971, South Sydney won the Sydney Rugby League Grand Final.  I have no recollection of watching the game on television.

  On the first Sunday of October, 1971, Alan Moffatt won the Hardie Ferrode 500, One of my earliest recollections as a child was walking into the living room and seeing my father laying on the floor watching the race. And that's what I did. Armco guard rails, hale bales, spectators on the fence line, and the pits opened directly onto the racing line. And I was hooked on motor racing.

  Over the years, I have been to motor racing events on four continents. I have seen my heroes like Jack Brabham, Nigel Mansell, Juan Pablo Montoya,  and Michael Andrietti race. I have stayed up past midnight to watch live international broadcasts from across the globe, and in those dark hours of my life, it has given me comfort.

 43 years ago was the last time that South Sydney appeared in a Grand Final. With my father in the country, he and I will stay up tonight well past midnight to watch the broadcast from Australia.

  It will be the first time in over 15 years we will have watched a game together. And the winner will be the relationship that a parent has with a child.