The third novel by a Weedon author was due to be released today (Thursday).
Judith Allnatt’s novel called The Moon Field is set in 1914.
It tells the story of George Farrell who cycles through the tranquil Cumberland fells to deliver a letter, unaware that it will change his life.
Mrs Allnatt said: “I hope that readers will take the characters to their hearts. The dreamy and gentle George Farrell, his school friend the feisty Kitty Ashwell, the beautiful but lonely Violet Walter, young Lieutenant Edmund Lyne and lost boy Percy Rooke.
“I became fond of all of these in the writing of the book and hope that the reader will too.
I think that there’s a little bit of yourself in all of the characters you create. I’m never quite sure whether you inhabit the character or the character inhabits you but for a while you live with each other very closely.
“I think you have to feel something of each character’s emotions in order to be able to communicate them effectively. Getting into George’s character was probably the biggest challenge as his experience is so far from my own: he’s male, young, from a different era and experiencing war.
“Nonetheless, what writers do is to delve deep into research to find out how the character might have felt. Also, although neither writer nor reader may have experienced army camaraderie or life under fire, we all know what friendship or fear feels like and we draw on that knowledge to create the characters’ emotional landscapes.”
And she had a different set of advice for other unpublished writers.
Mrs Allnatt said: “Frequently, aspiring writers are advised to ‘write what you know’. I understand that the intention here is to ensure that you can depict your fictional world convincingly but where is the challenge to the imagination, the sense of imaginative adventure?
“I think you should write what you don’t know or, more specifically, what you are interested in finding out. Often research then fuels your creativity.
“In ‘The Moon Field’ I wanted to find out what ripples might flow from one action - enlisting - both for the soldier and for those who are left at home. I always say to my creative writing students: write about the subjects that won’t leave you alone, the things that you have a burning curiosity about or with which you feel an emotional connection. In other words, write from your passions.
The Moon Field is available from most bookshops. Visit www.judithallnatt.co.uk to learn more about her.