I’m off to Perth next week with a great book under my arm. Karly Lane’s new book Morgan’s Law just somehow jumped into my hands, when I was in the Book Shop last week! North Star (Karly’s first book) was a great read and I’ve no doubt that Morgan’s Law will be the same – in fact it’s debuted at number six in the top ten of Allen and Unwin best sellers, for last week.
Here’s Karly to tell you more:
Thanks for having me Fleur, it’s so great to be here to talk a little about my May release, Morgan’s Law.
Following my theme of family secrets, romance and small country towns, I hope readers fall in love with my next lot of characters and the little town that became as real to me as the one I live in.
Although Negallan is a fictional place, in my mind I’d pieced together bits and pieces of real places to create the town. The central location in Morgan’s Law is a pub called The Royal. I’m sure everyone has been to, heard of or stayed in a pub called the Royal. Just about every town in rural Australia has one, and this Royal is a combination of two old local pubs I adore, the Star Hotel in Macksville and the Bowra Hotel in Bowraville.
I love the pubs in my area- not that I frequent them for drinking in. (cough, cough) I love the history of the buildings. I’ve been doing quite a bit of research lately on my town and it was so great to see the old photos of a young Macksville and the buildings that were built so long ago still standing and very much in use today. The Star hotel is one of these buildings and I’m lucky enough to go there regularly to enjoy the food, views and atmosphere with my writers group on a regular basis. I’d also sacrificed myself, purely in the name of research, the unique experience of staying in a pub. I think I was robbed of the rustic experience pub accommodation used to be renowned for though, because most pubs are quite high on the star ratings now days! However myself and fellow writing buddies did hold a writers retreat at a local pub last year and I put this to great use in Morgan’s Law.
The location for Negallan was originally set somewhere between Emerald and Miles in central QLD (just a small area!) because the idea for the book came when we travelled home from a holiday a year or so ago up that way. We stopped to let the kids out in a park with a small museum next to it to for morning tea in a lovely little town. There was an old bridge that rattled when cars drove across it, a long main street, and a mechanic work shop across the road. It was a gorgeous little place and I can not for the life of me remember what it was called, although I’m thinking it was Springsure, but I’ll have to go back there one day and double check! However the majority of the features in this little town ended up in the book in various scenes.
I’ve been asked if I know where I’m setting my towns before I write, but they usually just come to me and sometimes it’s not until I’m re-reading the story that I recognise a building or a main street in the book as somewhere familiar.
A lot of the locations and buildings in my books are drawn on from places I’ve lived or surrounding areas. My childhood memories of places are very vivid and often find themselves becoming the place I’m visualising in my head as I describe it. Having lived in and travelled through rural Australia most of my life, I’m lucky to have lots of places I can use in my fictional towns, so stay tuned—there are still quite a few new places to introduce you to over the next few years!