stories about diversity.
I’m really excited to announce that I’ll be part of the Hawkeye team after signing a contract to publish Wellworth.
As many of you know I have been working on the Wellworth manuscript for a couple of years. Despite this I know that there are still many changes needed before Wellworth is fit for mass consumption (hopefully :-)).
Carolyn Martinez and the team at Hawkeye will be guiding me to turn Wellworth into a ‘riveting read’!
Check out their website for the quality books they have already published. I’m looking forward to seeing my book amongst these quality reads, in the next few months. But before that happens there’ll be some editing ahead!
Here is a teaser, the current opening scene;
Standing in front of the all too familiar facade of the pale green fibro exterior confirms my feelings of failure. I’m powerless to lift my hands and open the warped aluminium screen door. Confirmation that everything has ended.
The cicadas chorus begins again — like guests at a party silently scrutinising the late addition — not loud enough to drown out my dread.
I consider retreating, I can return tomorrow, or perhaps next week, to embark into the unknown. The next phase of my life. Sweat pricks at my forehead but it’s not from the heavy midafternoon sun.
I notice that the same curtains are hanging in the bedroom window I slept in over a decade ago; the peeling green paint on the concrete porch where a myriad of footsteps has fallen; and I’m 15 years old again. Who would have been here then? I look to the flower bed where an old bare wooden trellis leans haphazardly against the wall. A victim of year after year of drought; and recall the smell of jasmine in the spring. Lying on my bed; U2 poster on the wall. Buzzing flies — circling the light bulb — breaking the uncomfortable silence while a new girl cried into a pillow on the bed beside me. Or witnessing another, slowly unpacking her life’s belongings while I made small talk; assessing whether she would be friend or foe.
Chewing the inside of my lip, I pull open the flimsy silver frame. Stepping off balance as it flings toward me, lighter than I remembered. Green paint flakes with each rap of my knuckles. My blurry reflection stares back at me from the door’s opaque glass. Dark hair blows around my face in the autumn breeze. Lips form a hard line, the lipstick too dark. Indistinct eyes stare back at me. Who am I?
A ghostly shape makes its way toward me. Joe. The familiar rolling lumber, discernible. All thoughts of introspection disappear. Any questions about who I am, where I came from, no longer relevant. Emotions in check, I plaster a smile on my face.
‘Hey! It’s Ally. Hey, Sue it’s Ally,’ Joe calls, flustered by my unexpected arrival. His hands reach up to hug me, hovering, unsure. The foster carers’ oath — thou shalt not touch the children. ‘Come in, come in. You haven’t changed a bit.’
I follow him in, as wide as he is tall, this man I’d come to know as Dad. His dark curly hair peppered lightly with grey. His face with a few more lines though his eyes remains a brilliant blue. His smile genuine.
My time warp is complete when I see the mottled green lounge and mustard yellow chairs; the coffee table complete with gold feet. I can still taste the crunchy peanut butter and soft bread sandwiches Sue served as an after-school snack.
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