Media Archive


MEDIA ALERT                                                                         Monday 23 October 2017


A unique way of bringing history to Australian and international audiences will be released in November through a new book called Wakuwal (Dream).

Historian Peter Botsman, Hon Fellow at University of Melbourne, has written Wakuwal and, as his first work of fiction, it has taken many years to bring to fruition, through a long-term collaboration with two of the great people of North East Arnhem Land, Ms S D Gurruwiwi and Mrs P Batumbil Burarrwanga, their families and friends.

Wakuwal is an intercultural story that weaves non-Aboriginal and Aboriginal stories and experiences into a unique narrative on colonisation and its imposition and effects on indigenous Australia, and also on the people transported from one end of the world to another as punishment for trying to feed their families.

The Federal Member for Barton, the Hon Linda Burney MP, will be launching Wakuwal (Dream) in Sydney on 2 November 2017.

“I am delighted to be launching Wakuwal and I look forward very much to welcoming some of our friends from Arnhem Land to the November launch event in Redfern, Sydney,” Linda Burney said.

“Wakuwal is a very courageous and convincing attempt to create a new conversation between the peoples of the oldest living culture on earth, today’s non-indigenous Australians and Western cultural stories, through events that have occurred over more than 200 years.”

“It is a fascinating tale of hope and how faith and resilience can keep ancient knowledge alive, with optimism enduring in the face of ignorance and destruction,” Ms Burney said.

Peter Botsman says that through this book he is aiming to help people understand things that are important to both cultures.

Wakuwal tells history in a new way,” Botsman said. “Two hundred years of events are complicated, but when you can think of your own family members, it becomes more understandable. This is something that Aboriginal people have always done – they relate to time through the experiences of their grandfathers and grandmothers.”

Wakuwal is being published by Valentine Press, the vibrant print-on-demand publisher that offers an alternative for high quality writers.

Valentine Press principal Lyn Gain said she was very glad to publish such an exceptional work by Peter Botsman, long-time friend and associate from the days of Sydney’s Push.

“I am very proud to be in position to help bring this remarkable work of Peter Botsman’s to audiences,” Lyn Gain said.

“At Valentine Press we aim to help authors and readers alike benefit from high-quality published works that will enrich Australia’s cultural past, present and future. Wakuwal fits our objectives in all ways.”

“We are most happy too that Wakuwal is already attracting very strong support through readers’ comments by highly respected figures such as Melbourne University’s Professor Glyn Davis, Batumbil Burarrwanga from Arnhem Land, award-winning author and former speechwriter for Paul Keating, Don Watson, and many other great Australians,” Lyn Gain said.

The launch of Wakuwal will begin with a Welcome to Country by Allen Madden, and performance by dancers from North East Arnhem Land who are travelling to Sydney especially for the event.

Following the launch, which will include speeches by Linda Burney and Peter Botsman, there will be a preview screening of the film Dhukarr Yakthun (Remaking the Pathway), by Emma Hudson, in conjunction with Batumbil Burarrwanga.

For media registration, interviews and inquiries, please contact April Pressler – or mobile 0412271744.

Background/further information

Media Release – Valentine Press
July 27, 2015

Florence Next Time: A Treasure Trove of Art

Sydney, Australia: Serious art travellers are going to love the new e-book published by Valentine Press.
Florence Next Time is engagingly written by new author John Ayling and it is for travellers who have a particular interest in seeing the very best Florentine art covering the Renaissance period.
Designed as a “carry-with-you” tour e-guide of a single location for second-time visitors to Florence, this is a very focused guide book written in a warm, chatty and personal tone for leisured travellers and visitors who plan to stay more than the usual “one-and-a-half days” in Florence, Italy. In fact, visitors may need a couple of weeks to cover the contents of Florence Next Time on foot.
This is an accurate and useful guide to some extraordinary art treasures of Florence, and it helps visitors locate and see precious and wonderful works that are often missed.
“I have written Florence Next Time mainly as a kind of guide for visitors who have been to Florence already, but left disappointed that they could not fit in or see enough things and who often say that ‘next time’ it will be different and they will have a much longer visit,” John Ayling says.
“I want to help the second-time visitor return with confidence and with my e-book on their Kindle to make it easy as it guides them to and through all the major art sites, to see and understand all the amazing masterpieces they may otherwise never find.”
The book includes walk-through tours of all the major art sites, all 11 basilicas, all other important churches, plus the Uffizzi, Accademia, Galleria Palatina at the Pitti Palace, and many other treasures.
It details all the “must-sees” and many other works of great value and beauty that are usually overlooked by tourists in Florence.
John Ayling has also included stories about the artists, buildings and their history, providing the reader with insights to Florentine culture that they would not find in regular travel guides.
Importantly, Florence Next Time does not pretend to be a guide to Florence itself – no hotel details, restaurant reviews etc.
“It is just about the art, which is really why most people go to Florence,” says John Ayling.
John Ayling is a Sydney-based retired senior Australian barrister who has an enviable historical knowledge of the political, religious and artistic issues of the 12th to 16th centuries. He conducted a prodigious amount of research to ensure exact accuracy of reporting and took six months to write the main content of Florence Next Time. He is planning more guides to other treasures around the world.
Florence Next Time is available for $AUD9.99 in epub and mobi versions. Further information is available at Valentine Press or contact or 0412271744.

Media Release – Valentine Press
March 23, 2015

From London Oz to Darkest Africa

The novel, Chipman’s African Adventure, by Jim Anderson, has just been released for publication by Valentine Press and will be launched by Charles Waterstreet in Sydney this Friday, March 27, 2015.
Jim Anderson is a novelist, editor, photo artist and active member of the Sydney arts and gay communities. His satirical photo collages have been widely exhibited. Jim is perhaps best known for his role as one of the defendants in the London Oz Magazine conspiracy and obscenity trials in the Old Bailey. Chipman’s African Adventure is his second novel. Its genesis is Jim’s experiences after the Oz trials when he became involved in the international hippy trails.
Chipman’s African Adventure is a psycho adventure – a blackly comic tale set in the imagined country of Bomzawe in West Africa in 1972. It also contains a tender gay love story. Though essentially satirical, some people may find the ribald sexuality, both gay and straight, confronting.
Chipman is a benighted but endearing hero, confronted by many moral and ethical dilemmas. The satire is savage and so is the civil war which inevitably comes. It would be easy for a psycho adventure like this to fall into caricature. Instead, the protagonists have a depth of characterisation which makes it all touchingly down to earth and real.
Not everyone escapes alive, sane or uncompromised from Tlula Leisure Beach.
There has been considerable advance praise for Chipman’s African Adventure, including:
An exuberant, rollicking narrative spiked with sex, drugs, and a thoroughly wicked wit. Graeme Aitken, author of Vanity Fierce
The set-up is perfect: it’s 1972, a bunch of hippies & misfits are living in and around a ramshackle hotel on the beach in tropical Africa. The counter-cultural detail is funny and deeply authentic – Jim Anderson was at the centre of London’s sixties counter-culture. The story-telling is terrific: shades of Evelyn Waugh’s Black Mischief and Tom Sharpe. Makes you think too. Barry Miles, author, definitive biographer of the beat/hippy generation and sixties counter culture.

For further information or interviews with Jim Anderson, please contact:
Lyn Gain, 0266 551840, 0417 288703 or email

Media Release – Valentine Press
25 November 2014

Launch of The Bird of Time

If sudden climate change were to occur following a large movement of tectonic plates and centrifugal forces that shifted the Earth’s polar axis, it is impossible to predict where continents and countries could end up. How could we survive such a sudden cataclysm?

The Bird of Time, a novel by Walkley Award winning journalist and former diplomat, Gavan Bromilow, deals seriously and intelligently with an unprecedented global natural disaster that sends many millions fleeing the Indian sub-continent as dramatically sudden climate change forces a huge challenge for survival.

The book has just been published by Valentine Press and will be launched in Canberra by Australian poet, author and environmentalist Mark O’Connor at Paperchain Bookstore, Manuka, on Friday 28 November.

It is a gripping tale of an extraordinary journey by a small group of Indian farm workers living on the Deccan plateau in India, led by an expatriate Australian and his Indian partner.

The scenario is set out with a wealth of convincing detail, since the author knows this region intimately. West Australian Gavan Bromilow has spent some 16 years altogether living in India and now splits his time between Australia and India.

Through this novel, Gavan Bromilow takes us into a very possible future that challenges human tolerance and survival instincts and he puts meticulous details so confidently into the story that the reader feels this extraordinary tale has actually happened.

The Bird of Time will appeal to anyone with an interest in climate change, Indian environments or the humanitarian imperatives of refugees.

The book is available now through Valentine Press online and selected bookstores including Paperchain Bookstore in Canberra and via e-book platforms in early December.

Valentine Press is an independent, print-on-demand Australian publisher headed by Lyn Gain who established the business last year to publish Witch Girl and the Push. Recently, Valentine Press published Memoirs of a Dedicated Amateur by one of Australia’s most significant experimental film and video makers, David Perry.

For further information or interviews with Gavan Bromilow, please contact:
April Pressler – 0412271744 or


Media Release – Valentine Press
19 September 2014

Ground-breaking Sydney artist David Perry publishes his “Memoirs of a Dedicated Amateur”

The publisher of Australia’s Valentine Press, Lyn Gain, is proud to announce that Memoirs of a Dedicated Amateur by multimedia artist David Perry is now available through Valentine Press –

“We are very happy to be publishing the talented David Perry’s Memoirs of a Dedicated Amateur and are looking forward to his Sydney launch next week,” Lyn Gain said.

UNSW’s A/Professor of Film, Jane Mills, will be launching the book on Friday 26 September at UNSW Galleries in Paddington at a special event with Sydney artist Luke Sciberras as Master of Ceremonies. In her Introduction for David Perry’s Memoirs, Jane Mills said:

“David Perry writes very much like many of his films and paintings. He writes words and you feel colours; he describes images and you taste letters; he uses metaphors and you hear concrete sounds. His words and verbal pictures overwhelm your senses and, at the same time, make vivid connections to your cognitive, sense-making processes.”

Sydney-born David Perry has always aspired to the world of art and to making pictures from an early age, when he really wanted to be a magazine illustrator. But instead, he found himself as a printer’s apprentice at the age of 16, encouraged by his father to take up a trade that would support him.

In Memoirs of a Dedicated Amateur, David Perry takes us into his extraordinary visual world over 60 years, from printing and print making to where he would also excel as a photographer and film maker, besides drawing, painting and printing works that sold at exhibitions, making this modest polymath much more than an amateur to the people of Sydney and further, including fellow artists, film makers and photographers.

As founding member with Albie Thoms and Aggy Read in the 1960s of Sydney’s underground, experimental film-making collective Ubu Films, David Perry produced some of Australia’s earliest avant-garde films and he also became the inspiration for many of the Ubu group’s associates, such as film director Phillip Noyce and artist Garry Shead.

Over 220 images are included in David Perry’s Memoirs and 165 of them can be seen at the Valentine Press Photo Gallery here.

Review copies of Memoirs of a Dedicated Amateur are available from Valentine Press.

Further information:
April Pressler – 0412271744 or

FacebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmailFacebooktwitterredditpinterestlinkedintumblrmailby feather