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STORIES OF LIFE, STORIES OF LOVE
I hope you enjoy these eight short stories. They are all romances, with the exception of the dramatic In the Southern Wild which, nonetheless, has an upbeat ending.
Spring Has Sprung was a finalist in a national short story competition.
Falling Stars and Love Never Dies are fantasy. One day I hope to publish the medieval fantasy novel that is languishing in a bottom drawer.
Threading Pearls uses as its background some of the experiences of my maternal grandmother, who migrated to Australia from Argentina, as did my grandfather.
I’m a great believer in using family history as a springboard for my stories. It is amazing what you can find when you research your ancestors!
The last story, There’s None So Blind, appeared in the Romance Writers of Australia 2009 short story anthology, and was inspired by a court case in the late 18th century. It involved an ancestor. I discovered a detailed contemporary account of the proceedings in a legal book store in San Francisco. I’ve since undertaken a lot more research on this ancestor. Now there’s a novel of over 111,000 words inspired by his story. It’s entitled “The Heart Has Its Reasons”, and is ready for release.
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A finalist in a national competition, this story was inspired by the two librarians who presided over our town library when I was a child. They seemed intimidating and a little scary, yet each year before Christmas they invited me to choose six new books for the holidays, from many boxes of new arrivals. I still remember my excitement, and the scent of those books. To this day, I love libraries.
I saw a landscape of indigo storm clouds and bleached yellow grass. The clouds looked threatening, and the story came, suddenly, out of left field. Much bleaker than my other writing, it nonetheless has an optimistic ending.
I just had to make my heroine a librarian. My previous story, Spring Has Sprung, had at its centre two retired spinster librarians. Here, Eva is younger, divorced, and looking for love (with just a little help from her sister Babs).
Much has been made recently of World War I commemorations, with its heavy loss of life on the battlefield. We tend to forget the attacks on British civilians. This fantasy story was inspired by those events, one hundred years ago.
Inspired by stories of Welsh faery folk, I set this story in a mythical place somewhere on the Welsh borders. It involves the plight of the poverty-stricken daughter of an imaginary duke and duchess, who’s in love with an equally impoverished blacksmith.
Just prior to World War I, my maternal grandmother arrived in Australia from Argentina. I discovered that on her family’s round-the-world voyage she not only learned English, but enjoyed a romance with the ship’s doctor. Her adventures gave me the idea for this story.
Not a gem that gets a lot of exposure. Its mention by the heroine highlights her nerdy nature. She’s never quite forgotten her childhood boyfriend and his eyes that reminded her of peridots.
First published in a Romance Writers of Australia anthology, this story took inspiration from the ordeal experienced by an English ancestor in the late eighteenth century. With a little tweaking (and a few name changes!), it’s gone on to form the basis of my forthcoming historical romance, The Heart Has Its Reasons.