author of 100 Things: What’s On Your List?
Ten Terrifying Questions
1. To begin with why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself – where were you born? Raised? Schooled?
Well I was born in Sydney; before then I was hopping over to Mauritius, Norway and then England by the age of 4. Ten years later, I returned to Australia where I now live with a strange accent and a huge passion for life!
2. What did you want to be when you were twelve, eighteen and thirty? And why?
When I was twelve I wanted to be thirteen (doesn’t everyone?). When I was eighteen I wanted to be a professional rugby player (I’d played all my life) and now I’m 30 I simply want the journey to continue.
I’ll be honest; at eighteen I had no idea about this world or myself and as such I just drifted through life without opinion, belief or care.
4. What were three big events – in the family circle or on the world stage or in your reading life, for example – you can now say, had a great effect on you and influenced you in your career path?
1) Backpacking by myself at the age of 21 years old gave me a new type of education that allowed me to see for the first time who I really was. I liked this character and decided to embrace him completely.
2) Being fabulously underwhelmed at my university graduation made me ask why it was that I was following a path that offered me no happiness
3) A close friend’s passing at the age of 24 years old allowed me a moment of clarity that shaped the way that I now lead my life. I saw happiness as being paramount to life.
5. Considering the innumerable electronic media avenues open to you – blogs, online newspapers, TV, radio, etc – why have you chosen to write a book? aren’t they obsolete?
Well I love the romantic notion of writing a book. For me it represents a tangible and ever-lasting expression that can never be taken away from you. Admittedly I do also have a blog and am guilty of spending too much time on Facebook and other social media platforms, but as a whole I love the creative process in whatever form it may come.
6. Please tell us about your latest book…
My latest book (which also doubles as my first book) is my own story of how a horrible moment in life sparked a realisation that I wasn’t happy. This realisation resulted in me writing down 100 things that I’d always wanted to do in life and the journey that unfolded as I tried to complete the list is captured in the book. Ironically it was this journey of just one person (me) that sparked a journey that has influenced many people around the world. The list is just the tip of the iceberg.
(BBGuru: here is the publisher’s blurb –
At the ripe-old age of 26, Sebastian realised that like most people, he has not achieved anything on his long-forgotten list. The death of a close friend combined with a naturally abstract view on life sparks a moment of clarity. In the midst of overseas trip, Sebastian decides to put pen to paper and re-create a list of 100 Things. His goal, to tick off everything.
Have you ever allowed yourself time to think about what’s really important to you? Something you have always dreamed of doing?
In a moment of reflection after the loss of a friend, Sebastian Terry’s answer is a list of 100 things, the things he’s always wanted to do.
Sebastian embarks on an incredible adventure which sees him Get Shot in Colombia, Crash the Red Carpet at the Cannes Film Festival and Cycle Across Cuba – all in an effort to ensure he lives a life without regrets. Now more than halfway through his list, Sebastian has realised that his journey is part of something so much bigger . . .
100 Things is a humorous, action-packed story for anyone who’s ever dreamed about living every day like it was their last. )
7. If your work could change one thing in this world – what would it be?
8. Whom do you most admire and why?
I admire people who follow their heart without questioning themselves. Those who not only overcome hurdles but also help other people in the process impress me greatly.
9. Many people set themselves very ambitious goals. What are yours?
Well I have 100 of them and they can all be seen at http://100things.com.au.
10. What advice do you give aspiring writers?
You don’t have to be a ‘writer’ to write. I’m not. You just need a goal.
Sebastian, thank you for playing.
About the Contributor
While still in his twenties, John Purcell opened a second-hand bookshop in Mosman, Sydney, in which he sat for ten years reading, ranting and writing. Since then he has written, under a pseudonym, a series of very successful novels, interviewed hundreds of writers about their work, appeared at writers’ festivals, on TV (most bizarrely in comedian Luke McGregor’s documentary Luke Warm Sex) and has been featured in prominent newspapers and magazines. Now, as the Director of Books at booktopia.com.au, Australia’s largest online bookseller, he supports Australian writing in all its forms. He lives in Sydney with his wife, two children, three dogs, five cats, unnumbered gold fish and his overlarge book collection.