Moore Park Beach author Alan Corbett has taken out prizes in two international book awards for his eggcellent story about backyard chickens.
Alan is the writer behind Chicken Nibbles: Cartoons About Backyard Chickens, which recently won top place in the International Book Impact Awards and finalist position in the International Book Awards, both in the ‘humour’ section.
The annual awards showcase the work of independent authors from across the globe and across a range of different genres.
Alan said he was over the moon to be recognised for his work, with his cartoon book a labour of love that was two years in the making.
“It has been written for backyard chicken-keepers past, present, and future by one who has survived that experience with all limbs still attached,” he laughed.
“Each of the 54 high-resolution colour cartoons was drawn by award-winning cartoonist Mark Lynch, and each has an explanation, should you need it, of the finer points of the cartoon.”
Alan said his book was inspired by a period of his life 14 years ago when he was living in Crystal Waters, a permaculture village near Maleny with his wife after retiring from his role as lawmaker in the Parliament of New South Wales.
“One of the by-laws of living in Crystal Waters was a strict ‘no dogs or cats’ policy, but you could keep chickens,” he said.
“Having always had pets in the past, I decided to give chickens a go and, with the help and encouragement of other community members, a chicken coop was built and fenced.
“I then obtained an Australian Langshan rooster named Nobby and three Langshan pullets which were just old enough to lay eggs and that's where the journey with backyard poultry began.”
Alan said it was during this time that he would often observe the chickens and found their personalities and oddities fascinating.
“It wasn't difficult to generate ideas for the book because chickens are naturally funny and I was either studiously observing them or in close contact with them throughout the day,” he said.
“Inspiration was also provided by other chicken-keepers recounting their experiences of chicken mayhem and hilarity.”
Alan continued to keep chickens on and off over the next few years, but he has now called it a day with chicken-keeping.
“While there are no chickens in my life, I still have an abiding fondness for them and a belief, shared by many, that keeping backyard chickens can have a positive impact on people’s lives,” he said.
Alan's book, Chicken Nibbles: Cartoons About Backyard Chickens, is available for all chicken lovers to purchase by email here.
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