As sometimes happens, I failed to keep up with notes and now have to remember what was going on at the time. The was not the first story Warne had sent me, but for some reason or another it was the first one I decided to publish. He said that it was based on real events, not experienced by himself, but told to him by a friend. When authors send in stories, I try never to read the introductions they give, just like I never read the forward to a book. I don’t want to be influenced ahead of time. If the story or the book is good, then I go back and read the introduction and preface and all that stuff. And if I don’t like the story, and then find out that the writer had cancer and this was their dream to get published on Tales of Old, it is too bad, because I have already made my decsion. That has never happened by the way, the cancer thing, thank goodness.
I liked this story because it did seem real to me. They problem was that since Warne is Australian, I felt really self concious about trying to narrate the story, either with my southernish American accent or some horrible fake Australian accent. So I put the call out to my friend Kevin Harty, who lives in New Zealand. For some reason I had forgotten that he is actually from England. He was a little leary about doing an Australian accent, but I impressed upon him that it would be better than anything I could come up with, and he did it in his usual great style.
Poor Kevin, the first story I gave him was the Friendship of Monsieur Jeynois, which was terribly long, lots of voices, and difficult vocabulary. We were still working out the kinks then. I hate to think what he went through doing that one. Harry