Steven McCarthy dabbled in writing at the age of eleven. However, it was not until the 1982 land rights gathered momentum in the Indigenous community that McCarthy felt inspired to write again. In 1990, he made a commitment to himself to become a full-time writer.
The author of Unaipon award-winning Black Angels, Red Blood, he is also a playwright. His biography on UQP credits him with four plays: 'The Colour of My Skin', 'The Crow and the Wind', 'Under Friendly Fire', and 'Jalalu Jalu' (co-authored with Cheryl Buchanan). Performance details have only been traced for the latter, thus far.
'On the surface there's not much to distinguish Tim's life from any other on the fringe- where dope, booze and women are his pleasure as well as his pain. He has family in the bush, and the lives of his city friends are transacted in the face of poverty and police harassment. It is only in Tim's relationship with the Old Man that we glimpse another and little known world where the rules are different, but so too the retribution.' (Source: Publisher's blurb)