Tag Archives: banjo Patterson

The Books for Snowy River – what happens when your book goes out of stock just before a writers festival

24 Mar


sex lies snowy river

This week I had the simultaneously delightful and alarming news that ‘Sex, Lies and Bonsai’ is temporarily out of stock. Delightful, because yay, I’ve sold out! Alarming because I am booked to do a session called ‘Sex, Lies and Bonsai’ at the Snowy Mountains Writers Festival next weekend. And a session like that with no books is a little like a pub with no beer.


I have been moved to capture the ensuing events in verse…


 The Books for Snowy River

(with apologies to Banjo Patterson)


There was dismay

 at HarperCollins for the word had passed around

That Sex, Lies and Bonsai had run out.

And an urgent order had come in – 50 books must soon be found

So all the sales team gathered at the shout.


All the tried and trusted sales reps from the stations near and far

Had mustered at the office, after a bite

For the team there love a challenge

And as all in publishing know, a re-print cannot happen overnight.


There was Anna who had bought the book and brought it to the land

No finer editor ever held a pen

For ne’er a text could throw her or a manuscript at hand

As a publisher she knows the art of zen.


Lisa’s off to Snowy River, up by Kosciusko’s side

And the readers there are twice as keen and twice as tough

And an author’s books don’t linger in the bookshops overnight

No, a tale that holds its own is good enough.

The Snowy Mountains Festival is on one week today

And Sex, Lies and Bonsai’s on the bill

We must find some unsold copies or else perish in the chase

Because our writer’s heading for the hills.


So they went – they got one copy from the old Big W clump

Then they raced away across the city crush

And Anna gave her orders, ‘team, go at em from the jump’

No use to try for fancy buying – rush!


And they found them, some in clusters and some they were alone

They chased them down like bloodhounds on their tracks

But there were only 49 when they turned their heads for home

And in boxes and in handbags brought them back.


But one was there, a stripling, with sore and blistered feet

She wouldn’t rest until she found the final prize

She was hard and tough and wiry, just the sort who won’t say die

There was courage in her quick impatient eye

And her bright gaze saw one loitering in a darkened bookshop aisle

And she snatched it up and held it to the sky

And she shouted to the heavens with the book above her head

We have not failed the festival, this book will now be read


So down by Kosciusko where the pine-clad ridges raise

Their torn and rugged battlements on high

Where the air is clear as crystal and the white stars fairly blaze

At midnight in the cold and frosty sky

In  the Thredbo Alpine Schuss Bar where the readers come to stay

Those yellow stripes are shining with the best

And the HarperCollins sales team are a household word today

And the author tells the story of their quest


You can catch me and the captured books at the Snowy Mountains Writers Festival over the Easter weekend.  Top of nine degrees in Thredbo today so bring the woolies!