I had a wonderful childhood, and leading up to the present, well, like everyone, I have had my share of ups and downs. But as I will tell anyone and everyone who’ll listen, I feel that I experienced a turning point in my life only a few years ago.
I awoke one morning, on a birthday, with an epiphany. I suddenly realized I had to get my father’s book published. He had finished writing it shortly before his death in 1993. Since then, the manuscript had passed between my brothers and me with the hope that sooner or later one of us might actually have it published.
When it landed in my hands for the umpteenth time, I typed it out – but then what? On the morning of that particular birthday, I knew I had to get it out – I am presuming that my mother’s advancing age (late 80s) had something to do with that feeling. Fit as a fiddle, or so we thought (but then, she was the world’s leader in hiding small details like health issues). It was then that I also recognised my stumbling block: how do you get published? This is the same problem that often halts writers in their tracks; sometimes, it’s enough to stop them completely.
It just might have been enough to put me off too, but for the memory of Dad’s passion for his writing, ancestry, and the outback of Australia. Added to that, the thought of Mum and her pride in Dad’s efforts and her not seeing them come to fruition – that did it. Google to the rescue! I found a self-publishing business that offered precisely what I was looking for. Full steam ahead.
Dad’s book was published exactly a week after Mum died in 2010.
Damn! But I tried, and am reassured that Mum knew that something had finally been done about the book. It was close to release and that, I am told, made her a happy woman at point of death.
Thus was the catalyst for my writing. It was and is now in my blood, and I am following a lifelong dream of writing and publishing books.
Next off the rank was one about bullying – once this was published, I decided to combine my writing with another lifelong passion: the outback of Australia. My book on stations is a work in progress, and I am absolutely thriving on it. It’s the most enormous challenge so far, but one that I am more than up to. I’m meeting the most fantastic people as I progress up this road – new contacts and information pouring in. Just amazing.
Following this, I have one for which I have already begun the research, about an Australian maritime disaster which occurred about a month before the Titanic, but due to the latter, the former was completely obliterated. I was approached recently by a couple who lost several family members in this tragedy – they want a lot more exposure about it, and I will be writing this book for them. All such fun.
After that, who knows. The sky’s the limit.