Once upon time I wrote a personal ad…
…as an assignment for a writing course. The ad was placed in a small rural newspaper by a young boy, named Dean. Dean was advertising for a new Dad. You see his own Dad had passed away and he wanted his Mum to be happy again. And he wanted someone to kick the footy with.
I took this piece and wrote a short story based on Dean and his Mum, which I was lucky enough to have published through a short story competition. It was called ‘Surprises’, and you can read it here.
I had a lot of fun creating extra characters to include in the story, successfully expanding a small piece to 1500 words, keeping true to the ad and its premise.
Then I started to wonder what happened to these characters I created. Well, my still in draft novel exploded out of this story. The funny thing is, the extra characters have remained true to the original story; they have their own tiny stories to tell.
The protagonist and her journey, however, is quite different to the original. She is still a widow and a Mum, but there the similarity stops. Ellie, short for Elenore, is petite, blonde, struggling, feisty, and faced with a dilemma of two difficult choices, one only a little less awful than the other.
Oh and Dean is not Dean anymore. He has been reinvented into Scott; still the same cheeky kid though. And he has an older sister Georgia who is not easily amused by her younger brother’s antics.
The characters’ journeys take place in a small town in the south west of Western Australia, a favourite area of mine. That didn’t change either. Like life, however, stories and journeys don’t follow a plan. Plans change and as I am a self confessed pantser I had no idea how this story would unfold until it did.