There have been conversations flying about on a Facebook writer’s group “Wordcount Warriors” about Donald Maass, and his thought provoking questions.

  1. Why are you writing this novel?
2. If you stopped writing this novel, why would it matter?

These questions, to a new and unpublished writer are not only thought provoking, but to be entirely truthful reader, they are terrifying.

Who cares about my story? I do, and I know a few wonderful friends who have read my first draft,they care. But in the big wide world, why does this story matter?

Does it really need to be written?

Well reader, I’ll try to give you honest answers to these questions. Answers that will establish my motivation for keeping this story alive.

As I’ve said before, I decided to write a short story set in my local area to kick start my writing again as I had stalled on a YA adventure novel. My research led me on a merry dance and I was soon discovering so much interesting information about the importance of the Hunter River (or Coal River as it was initially called) to the success of the colony. This led to reading about the individuals and the interesting antics that went on. The attitudes of the new colony were a far cry from the social hierarchy they were familiar with and this brought about a new social dynamic.

Imagine being raised with servants and lower classes that barely were worth your consideration, only to move to a land where the same people now were to be considered your equal?   What if you moved to a land where everything was incredibly different to your previous experience, the very land and the weather every bit as much your enemy as the bush-rangers and hostile natives who had been uprooted from their own lands. I began to imagine it, and a story grew from my imaginings.

This is a story that should be told, simply because it’s one that hasn’t ( to my knowledge) been written about in a novel. There are so many accounts of bravery, comedy, heartache and overcoming scattered about.The floods, fires and gunfights with bush-rangers.  I want to bring them all together in a fictionalised story that shares the page with real events and real people.