The House of Secrets: Julia’s Story and To Love, Honour & Betray – book 2 of the Belleville family saga.
OK so I confess – I’m still struggling to balance my day job and my life as an author but November will be a busy month for Library visits in Queensland and NSW.
If you are interested in hearing me talk about my writing, the era in which my books are set, the social settings that shape the stories and how the story has developed, I look forward to meeting you at one of these events.
American troops did commandeer the hotel as an officer billet in WWII and it was the location for many social events – my elder sister Deidre Hofmann’s engagement party was held here (probably late 1962).
If you’re ever visiting Rockhampton, you should check it out. It’s well located overlooking the Fitzroy River – and there’s another name from my books.
Other local landmarks that were mentioned include the Rockhampton General Hospital (up on the hill). The city name was fictionalised.
While all the characters are purely fictional, I chose to set my books in a setting I knew well – even though I left the area as a teenager.
There is so much in my first two novels that can generate discussion among women of a certain age. A couple of weeks ago I gave a talk at the local EACH group.
The local Wynnum EACH office is located in the same building as my office so it was an easy presentation to make.
It’s only through my office location so close by that I became aware of EACH’s activities – and this is direct from their website – http://www.each.com.au
EACH provides an integrated range of health, disability, counselling and community mental health services across Australia.
I’ve donated my books to their small library. Part of their charter is to provide social interaction for the lonely and that’s a fine ambition.
With my first book beginning in 1942, I was able to talk with women who lived the experience of war, lived the experience of a more restricted moral code and remembered not only the threat of war but the fashions at a time when they were young women and the world that they inhabited.
It brought out their own stories and I was delighted to listen to them.
I always find there is a slight problem in talking about a new book that no one has yet read …. because I don’t want to give away the key dramatic moments in the book, so I am left talking about the characters (those who share some characteristics with some of my late family members) and the things I’ve learned along the way that have influenced some of the small details in the book.
Small intimate groups are best. Here is a group I met with a week or so ago. All these women are very keen readers and appreciated the opportunity to ask me some questions about writing and how I go about it.
For every writer, writing is such an individual activity that no two people will ever do it quite the same way or plan their books in quite the same manner.
My trick is to really place myself in the scene, to imagine it as if it was a TV show. I imagine the characters, their discussions and their body language.
Now the next decision is about book 3. How far further along do I take the Belleville family? Stay tuned.
The new book is ‘To Love, Honour & Betray’, ISBN 9780994327611 (paperback) on Amazon or via local book stores or online and available in ebook format from the usual sources.
It’s a great relief to have got to this point – having first been over optimistic about the timeframe for the release of book 2 of the Belleville family saga. I expect to have the real thing in my hands by the end of next week. First print run is in production.
For those who buy via Amazon, To Love, Honour & Betray is now available at this link: CLICK HERE
There is an Amazon preview screen to read the first chapter and a half here: CLICK HERE
The next anxious period is waiting for reader feedback. Who can say how readers will respond to the way the characters’ lives have developed …….