Leaving it to You

by Wendy Orr

On Sale: 30/09/1992

Format:

Paperback

About the Book

Linda sighed. It was even worse than she'd imagined. She ࢠrather visit the dentist than visit some old person she didn't even know! Her teacher dreamed up this great idea of visiting old people in the community and she was stuck with cranky old Mrs Pugh. However Linda soon becomes fascinated by this independent Welsh woman with rheumatiod athritis, a quick temper and a musty house full of cats and antiques. But when Mrs Pugh has to go back to hospital, mysterious things start happening - her antiques start to disappear. Is someone stealing them? Do they want to get rid of Mrs Pugh? How can Linda find out? ∗Shortlisted, Children's Book Council Book of the Year Awards, 1993. Ages 10+

Product Details

  • ISBN: 9780207175923
  • ISBN 10: 0207175926
  • Imprint: HarperCollins - AU
  • On Sale: 30/09/1992
  • Pages: 160
  • List Price: 14.95 AUD
  • BISAC1: Children's, Teenage & educational / General fiction (Children's - Teenage)

Biography

I've wanted to be a writer for so long that sometimes it still takes me by surprise to realise that I am. I was brought up with my mother reading bedtime stories every night and my father telling long involved fables about our dog's Great Great Great Grandfather, who had travelled wherever we went and invented everything that we happened to see along the way. Travelling seems to have been a constant in my childhood, as Dad was in the Canadian air force and we not only moved frequently, but explored widely from each successive home. If there was one significant moment, though, in my decision to write, it would be the night shortly before my seventh birthday when my parents left two Dick and Jane readers by my bed. I was an English-speaking child growing up in France, learning to read and write in French, and I've never forgotten the thrill of picking up these books and realising that I could read in my own language. Once I'd learned that I could have power over words on a page, the step of wanting to create those words followed naturally. Like reading, writing is an act of discovery. My stories start as a vague idea ' a large, foggy lump ' and layers are gradually stripped away until I wake up one morning and realise what a character's name is, what they look like, or the way they see the world. Apart from very minor characters or incidents, I rarely feel that I've decided what a person will be like or exactly how they - and the plot - will get to where they're going. It's more like getting to know a friend: hearing snippets of their life, meeting their family, discovering what makes them tick' At this stage of a story I feel as if I'm walking around with radar detectors for anything that will give me a clue into what's going to happen and how or why. It's alternately the most exciting and the most frustrating stage, because I'm impatient to jump into this thing that's constantly bubbling in my mind ' but I can't actually start writing until I've got a fairly firm idea of the characters and the general shape of the story. And sadly, I know that this pure shining shape floating in my head will never be the same once I actually start trying to capture it with words. Once I start, the discovery continues. Each sentence, no matter how right it seems when I write it, will be whittled away, reorganised or thrown out, as each draft of the story tries to come a little closer to that original idea. Finally, usually around the seventh draft, when I read it through I think that it's nearly there. Just to make sure, I read it once more - and realise it's so bad that the only possible thing to do is burn it. Luckily by then it's usually been discussed or seen by a publisher, so I quickly shove it in an envelope and get it safely out of the house. People ask where I get my ideas from: are characters drawn from real people, or my stories taken from real life? Ideas, it seems to me, float constantly in the world around us, in everything we do, see and hear. Of my HarperCollins books, Only Yasou Nikki is autobiographical in its description of a first day at school for a child who doesn't speak the language, but even the craziest plots use snippets of my own thoughts and experiences. I have never won a house in a lottery ' or anything else, for that matter ' but I know how Roland feels about moving in Paradise Palace. I have never seen a pet shop with great glass sails like the Noahs' in Ark in the Park, but I know how it feels to long for grandparents and cousins. However, for those of you who want slightly more concrete details of my life: After attending a total of twelve different schools between nursery school and Grade 12, and then spending a year doing a course in Animal Care, I headed off to England. While there I decided to study Occupational Therapy in London, and before the three year course was finished, I'd fallen in love and married an Australian farmer. We moved to Albury, New South Wales and later bought our first farm in the Goulburn Valley of Victoria. Now, twenty years later, with both our two children at university in Melbourne, we have moved to Victoria's Mornington Peninsula where I continue to find delight in seeing the ocean, hills and trees. But because I'm a writer, one of the most exciting things about it is wondering how the change in scenery will affect my inspiration and how I write. We'll all have to wait and see.


More about the author



Other Works by Wendy Orr

Paradise Gold

by Wendy Orr

Paradise Palace

by Wendy Orr

The Tin Can Puppy

by Wendy Orr

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