Hello Fellow Travellers:
This week I was asked what prompted me to write Uncharted. Funnily enough I did not have a ready answer.
I had the notion to write a new novel and I came up with the idea that I could create a story around Alberta wildflowers and somehow work into the manuscript the challenges a deaf person finds in everyday life. The inspiration and motivation developed from there.
I spent a lot of time walking the pathways of Fish Creek Provincial Park and decided that Calgary and that very present urban park could make an interesting setting.
Lois and I have enjoyed many hours wandering around Kananaskis and Waterton parks looking for wildflowers, an enjoyable pursuit that kinda had its roots in Lois taking part in an annual wildflower count in Fort McMurray back in the late 70s and early 80s. Lois’ twin brother, an ardent amateur botanist, fostered our interest and we became hooked with hunting down the colourful and fascinating inhabitants of the forest floor.
So why the deaf woman, I was asked. I had the very real and distinct pleasure of employing a profoundly deaf press operator in my decade of print shop ownership. His view of life in a silent world enabled me to see life from a different angle and I felt compelled to have a character show the challenges faced by those who can see but cannot hear, who can speak but cannot hear.
Just to get you going, this is the synopsis of my novel:
“A grieving widower is found barely alive in a snowstorm, but wants to be left alone to die. After being saved, he struggles to go on with his life but becomes involved in a wildflower book project with the parks department in honour of his late wife. He works closely on the project with a botanic artist who’s deaf and finds himself attracted to her. A disagreement regarding the book sees the artist refuse to work with the widower, but slowly they repair their friendship. The book is published and the widower finds the strength to move on with his life, with the possibility of a new relationship with the artist.”
Email me (firstname.lastname@example.org) for a copy of Uncharted (softcover or ebook). The book is available in all the online bookstores around the world. More about the book can be found at www.graemeconnellbooks.com.