Andrew McMillan, Alice Springs, September 2010
Andrew McMillan, Alice Springs, September 2010


The winner of the inaugural NT Book of the Year award, Andrew McMillan, is crook in Royal Darwin Hospital — and Territory musicians and artists are rallying to the cause.

Recovering from major stomach surgery and further complications, Andrew won’t be able to live in his bohemian idyll known as “the bunker” for a few months, and needs more recovery-friendly accommodation for this time.

Andrew — a proud sort of bloke — has always refused to go on the dole, so has scant resources to fall back on. That’s why his friends and colleagues are staging a “Living Wake” to raise funds for his needs until he is back on his feet again.

The idea of a Living Wake has some appeal to Andrew – he will be around, in the words of Big Bill Neidjie – the Kakadu Man – “to hear the nice things said about me”.

Andrew is the author of Strict Rules, Death in Dili, Catalina Dreaming, An Intruder’s Guide to East Arnhem Land and, last year, took out the NT Book of the Year Award.

It’s going to be a big night at the Darwin Railway Club this Friday 3 December from 6.30 pm onwards. Some of the Territory’s best known singers and musicians will be performing — and well known artists will be auctioning their work.

Performers include Leah Flanagan, The Bloody Mary’s, Shellie Morris, David Dalrymple, Sven Larrson the Last of the Royal Scandinavian Fish Slappers, The Presley Boys, and Tracy Bunn.

There will be paintings and prints by Therese Ritchie, Colin Holt, Rob Brown, Glenn Campbell, Kate Fernyhough, Alison Dowell, Nicholas Bland, painting services from Fred the Painter and a sculpture from the Buku-Larrnggay Mulka Centre in Nhulunbuy.

Tickets are on sale from the Darwin Railway Club and the Roma Bar at $20, with a limit of 200 — so get in early.

Contact: Fred Vant Sand, (08) 89851606 or 0448302371