I have to say, I have never, ever sat down to talk to someone and had the feeling I had just met the character out of one of my books. I don’t think I ever expected it would happen.
I’m very particular about not using anyone I know or have known, as a character in my book, because it can only lead to trouble. And on a different level, I can’t imagine what I would do if someone thought they recognised themselves in my books! Believe me, it won’t happen.
I have had five days in Perth recently and I was lucky enough to catch up with my lovely friend and Rural Woman of the Year (2012) for WA, Catherine Marriott. Now as a by-the-by, let me tell you, you will never meet anyone as warm, generous, inspirational and gorgeous as this woman. I love her to bits and have only known her for a short time.
However, she has had an awesome role model. Her mother, Cath Marriott.
Cath Marriott, just happened to be in WA last Friday night, when Catherine and I organised to catch up. She tagged along and listened to Catherine and I talking louder and louder, as we agreed with so much and tried to fit every conversation we needed to have, into about an hour and half. (Oh, and that was never going to happen!)
Then Cath started to join in and I sat back and watched mother and daughter interact. When there was a lull in the conversation (which believe me, between the three of us, was pretty hard to find!) I said to Cath, ‘Um, I hope you don’t mind me telling you this, but I really believe I was meant to meet you, coz you are the exact character I had in mind for Aunty Spider. She’s one of the main characters in my new book, Silver Gums.’
I think Cath may have been slightly gob-smacked for a moment or two, especially when I told her Aunty Spider was already dead! Then she laughed.
I actually can’t believe a woman, actually walked into my hotel room and acted the way I thought one of my characters would! It was an incredible and goosebumpy feeling and I think Aunty Spider is going to lift off the pages of Silver Gums now.