Aviva Tuffield is delighted to announce the acquisition of 24-year-old Lech Blaine’s first book, Car Crash: A Memoir. In 2009, Blaine walked away unscathed from a car accident in Toowoomba involving seven teenage boys. Three of his friends died and two were seriously injured. The driver was later acquitted of any crime.
Car Crash dissects the public and personal aftermath of a fatal accident through the experiences of a survivor. Blaine examines the voyeurism of the news media and the public fascination with death and tragedy. He pays particular attention to the way social media and smart phones mediate his relationship with reality and disrupt his ability to feel grief and deal with trauma. At the same time, Blaine is plagued by the familiar teenage tribulations of identity and sexual desire. The end result is an original exploration of grief and the nature of growing up in twenty-first- century Australia.
Lech’s essay ‘iGrief’ was shortlisted for the Scribe Nonfiction Prize earlier this year. He has been published in a variety of journals including Scum, Seizure, The Lifted Brow, Tincture and Voiceworks. He was raised in a series of pubs across southwestern Queensland and currently operates a motel in Bundaberg.
‘I’m delighted to be working with Lech on his nuanced memoir. He has an incredible personal story and wants to tell it in an insightful and respectful way,’ says Black Inc. publisher Aviva Tuffield.
Lech Blaine says: ‘I’m incredibly privileged to join Black Inc and work with a publisher as experienced as Aviva Tuffield. The events described in the book continue to affect a great number of people. I feel a huge responsibility to the subject matter. Once I decided to explore publication, I was afraid of winding up with an editor who demanded sensationalism or sentimentality. Aviva has embraced my desire to avoid clichés and happy endings. I started writing the memoir as a private way for me to interrogate a very complex event. I hope by sharing my own experiences of grief and trauma I can make other people feel less alienated or alone.’