When I think about summer in Australia I think of the hot sun, the beaches, the sea breeze and the flies. But I also think about bush fires and how they can rage across the land with such incredible power. It’s always interested me and I knew I wanted one of my heroines to be a volunteer fire fighter.
While I was on my research trip, I was very fortunate to speak to the captain of one of the volunteer fire fighting branches in the area. He explained to me how the call-out worked, what kind of training was required and told me about the vehicles available to fight the fires.
While we chatted, something he said sparked an idea for a scene or two in my book. They are both scenes I would have never thought of if I hadn’t spoken with him, and heard what it was like at the coalface. That’s the wonderful thing about talking to people who have experienced what you’re writing about – you get the real anecdotes and can ask about smells and sounds that you can’t get out of a text book or video.
I’m quite excited about writing this book, which will be Mai’s story. It will be book 2 of the new series, tentatively titled Nothing to Gain, so I guess I’d better hurry up and finish editing book 1 so I can start writing it!