As a little girl, I dreamed of being a writer. I can remember being about twelve years old and sitting down to my family’s brand new computer with my best friend to write the world’s next masterpiece. She, however, wanted to write horror – I, on the other hand, was scared of my own shadow. But I indulged her. We wrote our way into the second chapter, saved our document, she went home, and that was the end of that.
But so began my problem. I knew I wanted to write, but I didn’t know what – I just knew it wasn’t going to be horror! The older I got, the more my dream of becoming a writer became just that – a dream. Sadly, it seemed unattainable. I felt I just didn’t have the imagination to write something that people would want to read. Zero confidence. Zilch.
I had always loved reading, but after becoming a mother, I devoured anything in the romance genre. Easy to read and entertaining for those times I just wanted to relax from the daily grind. I read a lot of amazing books and discovered some much-loved authors, but also came across some poorly written cringe-worthy titles as well. We all know they’re out there! But this got me thinking that maybe I could give this a shot. All I needed was an idea.
A little over two years ago, I visited a small town called Nannup in WA’s south west. And I fell in love. Everything about the town seemed idyllic to me. From the buildings, to the people, to the trees and the scenery. I thought it would make a wonderful setting for a romance novel. And, I swear, it was like a little cupid-esque writing fairy shot me with her arrow of inspiration. I suddenly knew that I would be the one to write a romance novel set in a town inspired by beautiful Nannup. The town had become my muse.
I have spent most of the last week holed away in my friend’s ‘getaway’, surrounded by trees and animals, frantically working on the second draft of my novel, A Place to Belong, which will hopefully become the first book in a series. Visiting the town again after recreating it in my head as the town of Blackwood, named for the river that runs through Nannup, was surreal. So many of the town’s locations have inspired scenes in the story and I thought I would share some of them so everyone can share in the beauty of Nannup.