SUNSHINE Coast man S. Sean Tretheway is a rare commodity.
He's made up of part magician, part author and part adventurer.
Born in Los Angeles, California, Sean knew early he was different to the other boys, due to his insatiable appetite for the make-believe.
Later in life, he turned to writing.
Now he believes magic and writing are similar disciplines requiring the same kind of inspiration.
"I've been doing magic for the past 30 years and there's definitely a strong storytelling aspect that goes into my writing," Sean said.
"They relate to each other in many ways in the sense that they both create alternate realities."
As a seven-year-old, Sean became fascinated in magic after watching the 1953 Hollywood blockbuster, Houdini, starring heart-throb Tony Curtis, and immediately pestered his parents for a magic kit.
"Most kids, especially young boys, get a magic set at some point in their lives," he said.
"Some kids play with magic for a little while and then move on to something else.
"I was one who decided that I'd keep going further with it."
Sean began his journey into the world of magic by learning the tricks used by his heroes, which proved to be both inspiring and disheartening.
"When you first see magic, you think it's so amazing and special," he said.
"It's when you become a magician you actually sacrifice the things that drew you to it.
"Once you learn all the secrets you don't get to see the magic any more and, instead, you give people the wonder and amazement and excitement that you once had."
Sean's lust for discovery continued throughout his youth when his older sister and her boyfriend invited him to help build a boat to sail to the South Pacific.
After toiling in the Californian sun for several months, they finished the boat and embarked on their journey from Los Angeles to Tahiti, which lasted 45 days.
Sean's journey to Tahiti is the premise for his new book, Beyond The Road, a standalone sequel to his first book, The Roadless Traveller.
The novel follows the fictional Jack Slack, a conservative computer programmer who leaves America after meeting the enigmatic Blazer Madison and his friend, Hollie.
Jack joins them on their journey to Tahiti on their home-made boat, encountering several mishaps along the way as he searches to find himself.
"Jack's just learning more about life and himself and how to create the reality that he wants his life to be," Sean said.
"We all go through that process at some point in our lives."
The semi-autobiographical novel touches on the experiences and emotions that Sean went through on his journey.
Being isolated at sea forces Jack to look within himself and deal with the issues he'd been hiding from, something Sean went through on his own adventure.
"When you're at sea, you spend a lot of time introspecting," he said.
"As past issues come up, you have to address them because there's nowhere to hide."
Tackling such an amazing adventure at such a young age instilled a strong sense of resilience and confidence in Sean that has remained with him since.
"The main thing I learned was self-reliance, that I had strength within myself to go out on my own and do the things I wanted," he said.
After two novels, Sean believes everyone has a story to tell and implores anyone interested in writing to have a go.
"I've had so many people approach me, saying they wish they could write and I tell them that they just need to start," Sean said.
"The only difference between an author and someone who wants to write is that an author actually writes something."
GREATEST MAGIC TRICKS
- In 1918, Houdini made an elephant disappear before a live audience. The secret to the trick was never revealed, although many magicians have copied the trick since.
- David Copperfield once walked through the Great Wall of China in full view of a large audience.
- Modern magician Chris Angel once walked on water through a Las Vegas resort pool to the astonishment of swimmers.
- The Guillotine is a famous trick used for decades, making the magician appear to have been beheaded.
- The horizontal levitation trick involves someone looking as though they're floating in mid-air.
SEAN'S BOOK LAUNCH
- What: Sean Tretheway's book launch for his new novel, Beyond The Road
- Where: Trio's Restaurant, Noosa
- When: 5.30pm on Wednesday, February 8
- Cost: Free
- RSVP: Annie's Book 5448 2053
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