Lech Blaine

How good is Queensland?

In August, I travelled 7000 km from the bubble of Brisbane to the bloodshed of the Mount Isa Rodeo, and back again via Cairns and the Daintree Rainforest. I was trying to find the roots of Scott Morrison’s mute revolution, and why blue-collar voters staged a mutiny against Bill Shorten. But also what it means to be a Queenslander in 2019, and why so many of them are pissed off with the political system.

The Monthly have published the roughly 9000 word essay – titled ‘How good is Queensland?’ – in the November magazine.

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You can read the article here.

It includes hopefully enlightening conversations with Kevin Rudd in Brisbane and Kev Carmody in Warwick, plus a bunch of other Queenslanders, such as a plumber from Ipswich, a cattle farmer in Clermont, a diesel fitter working on a coal mine near Mackay, the Mayor

of Townsville, a Cairns schoolteacher and a Biloela social worker, along with an unexpected cameo appearance by David Malouf on Magnetic Island.

The Right to Remain Silent

I wrote for The Monthly about the Indigenous rugby league players who staged a silent protest during the national anthem before State of Origin 1.

Read the article at The Monthly.

Family Feud

I wrote a piece for The Monthly dissecting the Australian election through the prism of the bitter political differences dividing my family.

You can buy a copy of the magazine at newsagents or read at The Monthly website:

Family Feud

The Legacy of a Mother’s Love

I wrote a piece for The Guardian in memory of my wonderful mother.

In the Sights of the Alt-Right

For the election edition of The Monthly, I profiled rising Labor star Terri Butler, and asked her about getting trolled online by the faceless men of the alt-right.

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Buy from from news agencies, or click below to read online:

Terri Butler’s rise through the rancour

The Parable of Lyle and Dianne

The Monthly published a story by me about a polite pastor, a profane politician and Toowoomba’s scatological battle to not drink recycled water.

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Click the link below to read.

The Parable of Lyle and Dianne

Those who trespass against us

The ABC are replaying my interview with Richard Fidler following the recent passing of my Mum. Last year, The Griffith Review published a piece of memoir based on the same material in the interview.

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I’ve posted a link to the story below.

https://griffithreview.com/articles/those-who-trespass-against-us-growing-up-in-the-shadow-of-obsession/

Best Australian Essays

I was honored to be included in The Best Australian Essays 2017. My piece is called The Bystander, which is an excerpt from what will be my first book. It was originally published by The Griffith Review in 2017.

You can purchase a copy of the anthology here: The Best Australian Essays 2017

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What I’m Reading

I wrote a short piece for Meanjin about conducting a more productive relationship with sadness and the books that I’ve been reading lately.

“The best writers make me feel both more and less alone. Without flinching, they’ll pinpoint the limits of human connection and consumption, the folly of pinning your happiness on a single person or product. This tough love is extremely frightening and ultimately liberating. No romance or promotion will save a person from intermittent loneliness. Only by tolerating that fact can you eke out a new template for existing.”

Queensland Literary Awards

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Queensland Literary Awards

It was a mind-blowing honor recently to receive the Queensland Premier’s Young Publishers and Writers Award alongside co-winner Mindy Gill.