I disagree with the perception that free advice is often regarded as not valuable. For those of us keenly interested in writing and who invest most of our time now that we're retired to our writing but have to live on a fixed income value very highly any advice people care to offer. Because of our income status we simply cannot afford $25/month to belong to an exclusive circle of writers regardless of what the benefits may be. It's about time people recognized that there is great talent out there that may never be discovered or appreciated because some writers cannot afford the fees, etc needed to break through the "paper ceiling."
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The bush legacy todayThe idea of the bush as integral to Australian identity was reinforced in 1958 when Russel Ward published The Australian Legend. While some critics criticised his interpretation of what comprises a 'typical Australian', he argues that traits such as mateship, anti-authoritarianism, swearing and hard drinking came from the frontier experiences of real bush workers.
Bush ideals have been revered in recent years with television programs like Bush Tucker Man and films like Crocodile Dundee. Many well-known Australian films are built on stories from or concerning the bush. These include Picnic at Hanging Rock (1975), Eliza Fraser (1976), Breaker Morant (1981),Gallipoli (1981), Man from Snowy River (1982), Crocodile Dundee (1986) and Evil Angels (1988). Rabbit Proof Fence(2002) and Ten Canoes (2006) show how the bush is viewed as a source of nourishment for Indigenous people.
The 1980s and 1990s saw the bush become synonymous with drought, debt, depopulation and unemployment. Natural disasters and the natural cycles in the bush of drought, fire and flood have helped define Australian language, a sense of humour as well as comedy, music, poetry and literature.
Distinctive Australian architecture, with its roots in the bush, is recognisable in the rural icons of 'The Queenslander' house, the wool shed and the beach house. Characteristically, these designs used local materials as well as corrugated iron, and emphasised space and light as well as a connection to the landscape.
Aussie beach house
These qualities have been interpreted in modern Australian architecture with the approach of addressing the landscape, the place and the issues. For example, the Uluru Kata Tjuta Cultural Centre incorporates the Indigenous experience of country.
In his Australia Day address in 2002, author and ecologist,Tim Flannery, said 'Australians could only become a 'true people' by developing 'deep, sustaining roots in the land'. He said the land was 'the only thing that we all, uniquely, share in common. It is at once our inheritance, our sustenance, and the only force ubiquitous and powerful enough to craft a truly Australian people.'
The Weekly Bulletin
Australia's first national literary magazine, The Weekly Bulletin (later The Bulletin), not only described the bush, but also published bush writers. It was an influential publication which promoted a particular set of views – egalitarianism, unionism, and 'Australianism'. Both Lawson and Paterson saw the bush as central to 'identity', but in very different ways.
A debate about the real nature of Australian life, saw Lawson and Paterson write about their different perspectives on the Australian bush. This debate is, famously, known as the 1892-93 'Bulletin Debate'. In his poem Up The Country, Lawson claimed Paterson was a 'City Bushman' who romanticised the bush in poems such as The Man From Snowy River . Paterson countered with In Defense of the Bush by claiming that Lawson's view of the landscape was full of doom and gloom.
The argument was followed closely by the Bulletin's significant readership, reinforcing the bush as central to any discussion about national identity.
While Paterson was much more at ease with its wildness, Lawson saw the 'struggle' with the bush as central to our identity.
Greg Smith -Author
I have 30+ years as a graphic designer under my belt. During that time I've worked on countless books; designing covers, layout, etc. Now I've decided to "go behind the camera." Now I'm trying my hand at writing.