“All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us.” –Gandalf, the Fellowship of the Ring
This adventure of mine began with time. When we moved to Sydney, to a tiny apartment away from everyone we knew, life became quiet. My son was young and precious. We enjoyed exploring our new home, visiting the zoo and countless surrounding beaches, but then we’d return home and Haz would nap for four hours while I did…not much. I had time, plenty of it. I read. I cleaned. I worked on flattening my post-baby belly. These activities satisfied for a month or so, until the urge to create dulled their appeal. I missed university study, missed writing about Rembrandt and his quiet beauties, instructing school children at the Auckland Art Gallery, giving life to the thoughts in my head.
One afternoon while my boy was fast asleep, as I gazed out over the view from our balcony, I envisaged a girl swinging upside-down from a jacaranda tree in our neighbour’s back garden. The young nomad girl was given a name, character traits, a back story and a best friend. She became real when I wrote her story down.
Bell’s story wasn’t my first. I’ve been writing since I could spell the and cat.
Riveting, right? The suspense not knowing where the cat is going and what will happen when she gets there.
This same cat made an appearance in books 2, 3, and 4 of the series, The Cat in the Hat, The Cat in the House and The Cat in the House (revisited).
My love for all things fantastical was instilled at the very beginning. Many of my stories are inspired by the adventures our family shared. My dad worked away from home as an engineer in the Merchant Navy. Tired of being apart from him, my mum decided that she, my two older brothers and I should join him on the high seas. We travelled the world, were taken by pirates, and survived many storms.
Not your typical childhood.
I write stories I’d like them to read. I create characters with traits I’d like them to admire and aspire to have. I write for me, because it makes me happy, and for my Haz, my Izzy, my Angel, and my Jules.