The passion, the personal relationship with nature are ingredients one must come to terms with while writing the all Australian Outback drama. We live in a harsh, strange country....
The years of isolation in the Australian bush was my apprenticeship for writing the Outback series. I utilised my love of a raw, new land and its people and enjoyed every minute of the writing process, allowing the imagination to run riot with the composition of the storylines.
Mother Nature of course has her spontaneous outbursts on a regular basis in the guise of bushfires and floods, cyclones, army worms and locust to name a few. I can honestly say there was not a day when I did not appreciate a personal relationship with living on the land, with the resultant emotions, passion and pain, which are the necessary ingredients essential to penning the all-Australian epic drama. One must feel the sentiments and enthusiasm, the connection to the life and the land to make it believable. I had to bring the people and the land they occupied to stark reality. I could not have penned my country sagas if I had not experienced the living breathing essence that comes from actually living the life. I have indeed stood in those cattle yards and smelt the fear and danger of wild beasts….
The wild cattle in the second novel of the ‘Coloured Sands Trilogy’, titled Valley of the Eagle, had to come from a place I had already experienced. In reality, the cattle were not mustered from a huge cattle station (only in the novel) but from forestry plantations surrounding our property that we rented for running extra cattle. My imagination had to play a huge part but it was not difficult. I had experienced it all to a much lesser degree. I came to grips with nature’s cruel outbursts in rural Australia before I even thought about penning the series. The passion is never forgotton.