Barry was born in Melbourne but grew up in Brisbane until joining the RAAF where he served for 20 years. After leaving the RAAF he lived in Darwin until retirement then moved back to Brisbane. His retirement hobby was tracing his family tree, and after finding several convict ancestors he started writing about their lives in 2005. The books were originally published in print and have sold out. New information still comes to hand, but rather than reprinting new editions he has released them as ebooks that can be easily updated.
The print books sold at cost and the ebooks are free because much of the information was contributed by other family members over the years. If casual readers enjoy the stories, that is payment enough.