Each of the 54 high-resolution colour cartoons was drawn by award-winning cartoonist Mark Lynch, and each has an explanation, should you need it, of the finer points of the cartoon.
As Alanna Moore, author of Backyard Poultry – Naturally, put it in her review of the book, “You’re bound to have a cackle over Alan’s cartoons. You might even fall off your perch laughing!”
Warning: Some cartoons may ruffle feathers!
What Doggies Do
An understanding of what dogs can do will help people know what to expect and how to better care for them.
Of course, each dog is different so the cartoons are only generalisations and some stereotypical behaviour is illustrated.
A little bit about me
Alan grew up in Chatswood, Sydney, Australia and trained as a primary and infants schoolteacher. He taught in country New South Wales and then travelled overseas to Wales in the UK, completing a postgraduate Diploma in Teaching English as a Foreign Language, and to Libya, where he taught English.
After his return to Australia, Alan taught in the western suburbs of Sydney, completed his M.A. at Macquarie University in Sydney, became a school counsellor, and then a lecturer in Education and Teaching Studies at the Australian Catholic University.
In 1995, to the amazement of all, including himself, he was elected to the NSW Parliament for an eight-year term, and as a lawmaker he successfully advocated for the welfare and safety of children. After his parliamentary term finished, Alan and his wife moved to Crystal Waters, a permaculture community near Maleny, Queensland. That was where his interest in chickens began.
During his time at Crystal Waters, Alan kept a horde of eighteen hens, two testosterone-charged roosters, four ducks, and six guinea fowl, who all experienced occasional night-time visits from uninvited members of the python family.
After a day of caring for his wife and companion animals, he would relax by drawing
cartoons about what he had seen that day. The chicken cartoons made him laugh.
In 2007, he self-published a book entitled Chook Tails: Free Range Eggs, but failed to effectively market it.
Alan continued to keep chickens on and off over the next few years, but he has now called it a day with chicken-keeping. What remains, though, is his abiding fondness for chickens and a belief, shared by many, that keeping backyard chickens can have a positive impact on people’s lives.
This book has brought Alan a sense of fulfilment and closure. At last, a well-researched, high-quality cartoon book about backyard chickens that can entertain and educate chicken-keepers!
And who doesn’t need a good belly laugh these days?
A little bit about the artist
Upon discharge, he almost immediately got a job as a Qantas flight attendant, a position he held for the next 20 years.
During this time, he was also cartooning for the now defunct magazine The Bulletin, with 1400 cartoons published.
Still flying, he became the editorial cartoonist for The Australian newspaper, faxing his drawings back from around the globe daily.
He accompanied and drew the Gallipoli diggers who were flown back there for ANZAC Day in 1991, sending his cartoons back to the aper from Lone Pine.
A career change beckoned and Mark left Qantas to buy a restaurant in Paddington, Sydney.
Mark has won 57 national and interntional cartooning awards, including National Cartoon of the Year (twice) and the prestigious Stanley Award for Australia’s best single-gag cartoonist.
His work appears in the United States, United Kingdom, South Africa, Sweden, Brazil, Canada, and Germany, where his cartoons have had a staggering 15 million hits on toonpool.com and are seen by up to 3 million people a day on the Berlin subway.
His Facebook page, Daily Cartoons Mark Lynch, has 29,000 followers.
Mark lives in Sydney with his wife Jennifer and sons Patrick and Jack.