About Emily Hussey

Author

Stars in her eyes…

It’s a couple of years since we were first introduced to Miranda in Clear As A Bell, and with Christmas fast approaching, I thought it was time to catch up and see how she had coped with the challenging times we’ve all experienced recently.

You may recall that her IT business won a tender for the delivery of a hospital management system, and that was where she met Hugh Paterson. There were sparks between the two, but this was forbidden territory – attraction between contractor and client. Miranda had to back off fast.

We had a chat over a cooling spritz, and I caught up with the latest news in her life.

Miranda, How have you coped with the lockdowns that have frozen business activity over the last couple of years?

Miranda: It’s been a mixed bag. Given that IT Health Solutions develops software delivering management solutions to the health industry, the business has been under stress to deliver product around the country, like yesterday.

You must have been busy then.

Miranda: Tell me about it! We’re lucky in that the team can work remotely and that is what we had to do. We started the day with an online meeting, and scheduled others as necessary. I was worried that the isolation might be had for some to them to tolerate. It’s been a big change for some of the party animals amongst us.

But what about you? How did you cope?

Miranda: Well, I missed the office coffee machine; I didn’t realise how much I drank until it wasn’t on tap. Perhaps that was good as it meant that I had to go out and patronise the local cafes that were offering take-away options– fully masked and socially distancing, of course. Sometimes I went the long way round, just to add a few more steps to the daily exercise.

But aren’t you missing something? How did you manage your relationship with Hugh Paterson?

Miranda: Oh—I didn’t realise you knew about that. We haven’t been hiding it, but it’s still not general public information.

I didn’t mean to pry, but did you manage to see each other still during the lockdown?

Miranda: Umm – when we understood that we were likely to be living in enforced separation, we made a split-second decision to move in together. Hugh’s apartment is quite large, as you already know, and given its penthouse position, me moving there was a no-brainer.

Was it difficult both living together and working in the same space?

Miranda: (laughs). There were a few difficult moments, with competing space requirements, but fortunately I was able to use the spare room. My meetings are louder than his! He was also classified as an essential worker, given his role at the hospital, so he often went into his office there.

That must have been a concern with managing exposure to the virus.

Miranda: We set up a routine at the beginning, whereby when he returned from the hospital, he wouldn’t come near me until he had showered and deposited his clothes into the washing machine. I made him clean the surfaces in the lobby and all the areas he touched on entering the apartment.

Smart woman. I’d have done the same.

Miranda: We’re both vaccinated now, but we didn’t have to maintain social distancing with each other, if you know what I mean. (gives saucy wink)

That’s okay—I don’t need the finer details. I read the book and remember the heat rising from the pages a couple of times.

Miranda: (Laughs). That hasn’t changed. We still clash sometimes, but this time, I’ve found a keeper. Thank you for the chat. I’m glad to hear things have worked out so well for you

Clear As A Bell

Clear As A Bell is available from your favourite ebook retailer. https://books2read.com/u/bW90YY

Sizzling Sarah

Trust Your Heart
Sarah Hartford, central character in Trust Your Heart.

We were first introduced to Sarah Hartford in The Red Heart, when she met the train bringing Kathy Sullivan to Alice Springs. The two women became firm friends, and Sarah supported Kathy through the turbulence of her relationship with Alex, and of course in the aftermath of the accident.

We learnt to appreciate her as an empathetic friend, but one with an irreverent sense of humour. It wasn’t apparent the extent of the sadness she was also carrying.

In Trust Your Heart, we learned that in spite of the bubbly persona, there was a fragility underneath. Sarah was cautious about  putting herself in a vulnerable position where Joel was concerned. Sensible woman. Over the course of the story, we saw the growth she experienced, realising she was in charge of her life and it was up to her to make the good things happen.

I’ve taken this opportunity to interview Sarah and get to know her in greater depth.

You were initially a city girl. What brought you to Alice Springs?

It was a mixture of the job and looking for a bit of adventure. I’d always wanted to explore this area of Australia, and of course to visit Uluru. I was getting bored in my last job, so when I saw this position advertised, I jumped at it. It was the right move.

It must have been devastating for you after Dave Bishop died. What kept you in the town?

This was where Dave was buried and where I felt close to him. Also, I had a strong support network in Alice Springs, and really enjoyed my job. It didn’t occur to me to leave.

You and Kathy Sullivan were very close. Have you ever been tempted to take up flying yourself?

Not really. Until I got this job in Alice, I didn’t have any connections with aviation, so as a career it didn’t really feature for me. When I was small, I thought I would be a trapeze artist, but had neither the aptitude or the figure for it. I fell into administration, and it’s worked out to be a good fit for me. I like organizing things.

We saw how you organised the teams for the Henley-on-Todd Regatta. Will you train a women’s team next year?

Now that’s a thought. I’d have to think up different strategies to get the best out of the women. It would be really cool to have both male and female winning teams.

Things were a bit rocky there between you and Joel for a while. Will this relationship last the distance?

I can’t definitely answer that question, but we’re on a much stronger footing now. There are no secrets between us, and I feel he has my back. He supports my flamenco dancing, so that must count for something!

Have you met his family yet?

I’ve met Sam obviously, as he stayed with Joel for a couple of weeks. I haven’t met his sister yet, but she has a visit planned for next month. I’m really looking forward to meeting her. I used to watch her on TV when she was competing, so seeing her in person will be a thrill. She’s one who could have been a trapeze artist!

Are there wedding bells in the future?

I haven’t asked him to marry me, so who knows. We’re enjoying this time of getting to know each other better. It’s certainly an option. Joel has a three-year contract with the radio station, after which he could be posted anywhere. That might be a precipitating factor for any long-term decisions.

Trust Your Heart

You can obtain a copy of Trust Your Heart in print format from the the Book Shop page on this site, or in eBook form from Amazon, or your favourite eBook retailer.

Don’t forget to leave a review. It helps future readers.

On the downhill run

It has been slow progress but today I have started the last chapter of book 2.  The working title is ‘On My Wavelength’ with reference to the radio station that features in the book but this may change once I sit down and read the manuscript in its entirety. The problem is, when you take so long to write a book, you forget the finer detail of what you wrote in the beginning. I have resisted re-reading at this stage though as I know that I would get side-tracked with editing and re-writing and instead I want to focus on the final page.

Significant parts of my plotting for this novel have taken place in a local coffee shop. I tend to go for a lengthy walk on Sunday mornings and of course this takes in a coffee shop as well. I find that away from the distractions of home, I can get quite a bit done in the way of character analysis and plotting. I may write the first page or so as well, getting far enough into the chapter for the story to then take over. I find that handwriting helps the creativity as well.

coffee,-tea,-hot-drink

There will be a third book in this series, but at this stage I only know who the central characters will be. I have no idea as yet on the direction of their particular journey or what will happen along the way.

This year’s conference of the Romance Writers’ of Australia is taking place in just under a month and as I intend pitching this novel to a couple of publishers, I need to have it finished and polished by then. It’s a good incentive. Time for another coffee to keep me going.

 

Coming together of like minds

This weekend, I am attending my first conference for the Romance Writers of Australia.  It’s an action-packed program with something for everyone. I’m looking forward to the networking and to all that I will learn – not just about the craft of writing but about the industry.

I am pitchinChampagne-Glassesg to four new publishers, and have spent today collating thoughts and information.  I’ve also gone back to the manuscript for The Red Heart to give it another read through.  It is amazing that even after I have read it numerous times, and spell-checked and edited, and even after the editor engaged by the publisher reviewed the manuscript, that I have still found a couple of typos and grammatical glitches.  As I have read, I also tweaked and done the odd nip and tuck, taking out words or descriptors that really do not add anything of value to the story.  I am embarrassed now thinking of the clumsiness of the original text.  At least I am improving.

I have also added a new thread running throughout the story, expanding on the conflict between the key characters and which will also lead into book two in which I tell Sarah’s story.

The cocktail event on Friday night should be a blast.  I don’t often have an opportunity to bring out the bling but sure will for this occasion. It will set the rest of the conference off with a bit of pizzazz.  Perhaps I’ll even come up with some new story lines.  I’ll have a drink for you.