Shark Research : Author Matthew Reilly and JCU shark expert Richard Fitzpatrick
SHARKS, jellyfish, crocs - Matthew Reilly was looking for deadly animals for his future books and he got them at James Cook University.
The author, in town for the Tropical Writers Festival last weekend, was invited by marine biologist, researcher and Emmy award winning cinematographer Richard Fitzpatrick, who is also a fan of Reilly's, to the JCU aquarium to meet the world's most dangerous creatures.
"My fiction mind is working in overdrive," Matthew Reilly said on Saturday (Sep 15) as he was shown manta shrimp, stone fish, lion fish, leopard sharks, Irukandji jellyfish, and crocodiles and their killing methods.
"This is gold."
"I'm always looking for fiction methods to make Scarecrow seem dead."
Scarecrow is the protagonist in five of Reilly's thriller books - a marine captain who is very good at saving the world at the last minute.
His books feature dangerous animals from reptiles to polar bears.
"I like to make the unbelievable believable," Mr Reilly said.
The author was the keynote speaker at the Paronella Park literary dinner at Rydges Tradewinds last Saturday night and gave a talk about his work on Sunday as part of the festival's public arena events.
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Thriller action : Author Matthew Reilly with shark expert Richard Fitzpatrick at JCU aquarium