Go confidently in the direction of your dreams
(Henry David Thoreau)
Writers are dreamers. How many have dreamt of holding their published book in their hand, but scratch any author and you will find a long history of trials, rejections, false starts coupled with tenacity and enough perseverance to make a marathon runner proud.
Julie Filarski is an author who knows all about perseverance She also knows the benefit of learning the craft of writing. She was writing the first drafts of her fantasy fiction book, The Memory Healer in 1998 during a TAFE course in professional writing and editing. The manuscript was published by TWCS (The Writers Coffee Shop) Publishing House in 2014. It takes the reader on an exciting metaphysical journey of time travel, incarnation and regression. Once I’d started reading I couldn’t put it down. Instead of doing my chores I left dishes in the sink, the floor unswept and curled up on the couch until I’d devoured the last word. I’d highly recommend it for anyone interested in past lives.
The Mordialloc Writers’ Group with Mairi Neil at the helm meets every second Tuesday to workshop members’ stories, swap information about books, competitions and publishers, chat over coffee and support each other. Maureen Hanna brought along Julie’s book (currently available from Amazon Australia). I noticed her name in the acknowledgements and could not resist asking Maureen how she’d become friends with the author.
Maureen met Julie in 1998 at Casey TAFE, Berwick, at the beginning of the first term. They were both part-way through a Diploma of Arts. (Professional Writing and Editing) With another member, Linda McKay, they formed a group within a group of writers studying Novel 2.
The friendship was immediate and class nights always ended at McDonald’s just across the road from TAFE. They also met each week and lived close to each other.
Julie was working on an historical romance, ‘The Pointer on the Way’. Linda had researched an ancestor of hers, murdered on the gold fields in 1870 and was telling his story. Maureen was writing a fictionalised version of her childhood.
They began to workshop each other’s writing and the different styles of writing and genre made them all rethink their work. The result was a rewrite of Julie’s novel which became a paranormal/time travel romance set in the fictional town of Port Brandon, Gippsland, Victoria, Australia titled The Memory Healer.
Years later they are still very good friends but as Julie, Linda and Maureen now live in different locations the chance to catch up is more difficult. However, they manage it about five or six times a year and the friendship remains as strong as ever.
The Memory Healer
To give you some idea of the story…
On a wet summer morning in the historical township of Port Brandon, South Eastern Australia, talented artist and psychic Beth Montgomery reluctantly agrees to carry out a psychic assessment of Carrington House. She soon becomes frightened by a string of nightmares that could be warning her not to tamper with the metaphysical.
Despite her fears, she braces herself for what is to come and continues to unearth the secrets of the past. As soon as she enters the historical home, the image of a distraught Victorian maid appears, and then a young woman manifests on the staircase. Beth is transported to another era, where a magnificent four-poster bed, an engraved watch, and an exquisite ring evoke fleeting memories. When Beth spies a calendar, the date fills her with dread, but she cannot remember why.
Returning to the present time, Beth agrees to work for the irresistible Dr Matthew Jamieson, the new vet in the district. Each time they meet, memories of another lifetime flood her heart. She senses an eternal bond between them, but with two unfaithful partners in her past, she is reluctant to become romantically involved with him.
As her passion for Matthew intensifies, she regresses to 1895. In her past life as Mary Clark, she meets the darkly handsome Samuel Methven and falls in love with him on sight. But is he as honourable as he seems? Faced with Samuel’s apparent betrayal, Beth is plagued by fears that Matthew will also be unfaithful to her.
She knows that to learn the truth, she must return to her past life, but that means facing an unbearable tragedy. Does Beth have the courage to move between lifetimes and relive that dreadful event? Will she be able to discover whether her soulmate was faithful to his twin soul?
Intrigued? I’m sure you will enjoy this interesting and thought provoking story