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Colin Talbot Colin Talbot i(A212 works by) (a.k.a. Colin Maxwell Talbot)
Born: Established: 1948 ; Died: Ceased: 28 Oct 2018
Gender: Male
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Colin Talbot was raised in South Australia and, after completing his education at Port Pirie High School, moved to Melbourne to attempt a career as a journalist. Since then, he has worked as a novelist, scriptwriter, songwriter, publicist, sportswriter, web designer, film director, video-clip maker, editor, publisher, reporter, essayist, critic, and musician, among other pursuits.

Talbot's interest in pursuing a career as a professional writer began after several of his poems were published in his school's yearbook, and two more were later published in the book Sandals in the Sun (1966). (See note below on Sandals in the Sun.) He began his career in journalism as a copy boy for The News in Adelaide in 1967 and, after moving east, became a rock-music columnist for The Australian, a columnist for The Living Daylights, Music Week, and Go-Set, and a writer for The Planet, Rolling Stone, and Soundblast. He also later became a feature writer or contributor for counter-culture newspaper The Digger, along with more traditional papers such as the National Times on Sunday and Nation Review.

In 1974, Talbot became an editor on Tabloid Story, while also editing The Digger. That same year, he also co-founded Outback Press with Morry Schwartz (q.v.), Fred Milgrom, and musician Mark Gillespie. For most of Outback's five years of operations, Talbot, Schwartz, and Gillespie lived in the company's office, a terrace house situated in Gore Street, Fitzroy. In addition to publishing two novels during the 1970s – Massive Road Trauma (1975) and Sweethearts (1978) – he co-edited, with Robert Kenny (q.v.), a collection of modern Australian poetry called Applestealers (1974). During this same period, he was also the Melbourne bureau chief for RAM (Rock Australia Magazine).

After Outback folded in 1980, Talbot continued to traverse different paths within the creative arts, literary, and journalism fields. In 1986, he was director and board member of the first Melbourne Writers Festival. From the late 1980s or early 1990s, he began writing about sport and other cultural matters under the nom de plume Traven Collins. His interest in music, which developed through his work as a rock-music journalist, has seen him collaborate as a lyricist with such people as Stephen Cummings, Paul Grabowsky, and Red Symons. His songs have appeared on albums by those recording artists, as well as on albums by Ross Wilson, Colin Hay, Rebecca's Empire, and Rod Freeman-Smith. He has even produced an album of original songs, A Tad Moody, on his own label, Travenworld.

In 1990, Talbot directed a feature-film adaptation of his novel Sweethearts. Although commercially unsuccessful, it was invited to be screened at the San Sebastian Film Festival and was eventually sold in many countries around the world. The film has also been screened a number of times on Australia's Nine Network.

Among Talbot's other publications are Colin Talbot's Greatest Hits: A Collection of Essays and Reportage from Magazines and Newspapers (1976), Traven Collins A-Z Football Guide (1994, as editor), The Zen Detective (1996), The Bloke's Manual (Travenworld Books, 2000) and The 100 Greatest Australian Singles of the 60s (with David Pepperell, 2015). His poetry has also been published in Creek Roulette (1973).

Most Referenced Works


  • Talbot records on his website Travenworld that two of his schoolboy poems were published in Sandals in the Sun (Rigby Books, 1966, edited by Morris Hood). No record of this publication has yet been located.

On the Web

Known archival holdings

University of New South Wales Australian Defence Force Academy Australian Defence Force Academy Library (ACT)
Last amended 3 Dec 2018 11:44:35
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