Jimmy Barnes- author of Working Class Man

Author Q&As

What inspired you to write Working Class Man?

It seemed the natural thing to do. I had written Working Class Boy, really as a way of working through a lot of issues that I had that had been affecting me for most of my life, and the first book finished where most of those issues really started to impact on me. So it was the only way to really get through all I had to deal with. Get it out of my system. Also a lot of people wanted me to write a book about the rock ’n’ roll years. I’m not sure if this was the book that people were expecting but it seems to have been well received.

Which book would you want to read again for the first time?

Treasure Island. As a young man I dreamed about running away to sea, looking for a life of adventure. Actually I just dreamed about running away -  but jumping on a sailing ship was much more exciting than anything I managed to do as a kid. So I would have preferred to be dodging pirates and looking for treasure than living at home watching my family fall apart around us all.

Which author/s living or dead would you like to have dinner with?

Oscar Wilde. I think he would have been funny, challenging, intelligent and a trouble maker. We could have started a lot of trouble together 

What’s in your reading pile now?

Richard Flanagan, Arthur Herman, Robert Burns, Arthur C Clark and Oscar Wilde. Lots of others too. There are so many great books and so little time

We know you are a talented writer (and singer), do you have any hidden talents?

Who’s asking? Only kidding. I have a few. I can tear the paint off the walls with my voice. I can cook up a storm. I have started oil painting but I am just a beginner. And I am getting pretty handy in the garden. The only holes I used to dig were to throw myself into, but now I am growing beautiful roses for my girl.

Can you tell us what you are working on now?

I am writing a rock record and I have just started trying my hand at writing some fiction. I have a few ideas that I am working on but they will take a while to get down. But I am really liking the process of writing. I can see myself doing a lot of different things over the next few years.