Thursday, 20 December 2012

Mystery at Dead Man's Ridge

A big thank you to Janis van der Laan ( who has just finished editing my first manuscript Mystery at Dead Man's Ridge, to a publishable standard, ready for the next step ... either self publishing as an e-book, or looking for a 'traditional publisher.'  Very exciting times! Janis is busy completing the Proof reading and Editing Course at NZIBS, and is aiming to specialise in children's stories.  She is keen, though, to proof read all kinds of writing to develop her already considerable skills.  Janis has been amazing; as a proof reader, researcher of suitable publishers, illustrator and confidence booster!  I thoroughly recommend her.

I have also received help from a very successful children's author, Des Hunt, whose latest e book, Crown Park is now available to be purchased.  It is a wonderful story which I have reviewed on Amazon.  Check it out!  My first review!  Des has a number of fabulous books for children; all of which I have devoured; each one satisfying for both adults and children alike. I can't thank him (or Janis) enough for the work they have put in on my behalf.  It is very humbling.

During my writing course with Janice Marriott, at NZIBS,  I was asked to write a letter from the point of view of a main character; a task designed to help me 'step inside their shoes' for a while.  This letter I wrote is quite a useful 'preview' if you like, of what you can expect from my novel Mystery at Dead Man's Ridge.

Dear Tom.

            I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I kind of miss the farm!  I know you’re always going on (and on) about me being a ‘city girl’ and all, but I have to admit, life in town is boring after the mystery at Dead Man’s Ridge!  I mean, how many city girls do you know, get caught up in sheep rustling and cannabis growing?  My friends back here just don’t believe me!

            Seriously, I hope you’re taking good care of Rascal and Billy for me. I so miss them but I guess our apartment would be a little crowded with a dog and a lamb!  Mum’s doing much better.  They think they’ve got all the cancer and so far there’s no sign of it coming back.  Thank god.  I was so scared. So was Mum I think, but she’s not admitting it. Anyhow, she says I can come back next summer; I can’t wait.  She’s going to come too, I think.  ‘Time to heal old wounds’, she says.  I guess she means about Dad.  He’s been emailing me heaps and I’m looking forward to seeing him again.

            Write back if you can be bothered, little cuz, or maybe send me an e-mail ... you know, modern technology and all that. Hope you haven’t been doing any brown eyes lately!  Could be a little cold riding your bike to school in the winter!

            See ya.  Hugs to Aunty Liz and Uncle Ted.

            Love Maggie.  PS, have ya seen Luke around at all?
Keep a look out for Mystery at Dead Man's Ridge.  Hopefully it will be unleashed soon!!


  1. Oh I remember 'the letter' from the course. Yours is great. I think my favourite assignment was rewriting a fairy tale in 500 words using all modern day appliances. I did Little Red Riding Hood. What one did you write about? Could you put it on the SDB, I'd love to read it. I'll put mine up if you put yours! hehe :)

    1. Hi Niki. I think I did Little Red Riding Hood too! Can't find it on my computer but I must have a written copy filed away. Will look it up.