I’m at it again, dreaming of running away. In my day dream I set up camp in the country. In real life, Hubby and I are going to do this, we’re going to buy a farm house and a piece of land and…well, I’m not too sure what happens after that.
Sometimes when I’m awake in bed, I try to picture my new life. I see sunshine, lashings of happy sun and lush green paddocks (think Darling Buds of May). Rain does not feature in my dream. I also see vegetables and flowers growing as if on steroids. I never see bugs or potato blight or spiders. I steadfastly refuse to see snakes.
My second book (I’ve just finished writing it) is set in rural NSW, and every book from now on will be set in the country. I’ve been a city girl all my life (not counting short holidays). To date, I’ve had no experience of real country life at all, but it hasn’t mattered; I’ve had no problem writing a country setting.
How many times have I heard, write what you know. Taken on face value, I reckon that saying is hogwash. Who knows about alien life, or going back in time? I reckon not knowing the nitty gritty cruel realities of your subject might even help. It is hard to write glossy wonderful country escapism when you’re disillusioned by falling beef prices, bush fires and drought.
So, I say go forth, write what you don’t know. Anyway, our stories are really about emotions and we’ve all got a life time’s first hand experience of those.
Regardless of what I just said – I’m still moving to the country.