10 Mar Local Authors Celebrate Launch Of New Book
Cantella has been a labour of love for writer Alex Lucke, who first started working on the manuscript in the 1950s.
Back then Alec used to submit longhand to Claire Mitchell, who would make corrections, type up the pages, and send them back to Alec.
This continued until the mid-1990s, until when Alec purchased his first computer; he then would type up his own pages, with Claire acting as Editor.
“Cantella trialed many different openings, flashbacks and multiple points of view while searching for the ideal means of presenting a generational story,” Alec said.
“I wrote the plot and Claire typed, edited and offered guidance.”
In November 2020, Alec sent Cantella, which is centred around a young musician Floyd Vallis in 1950’s Sydney, to Irina Dunn, a leading Australian editor.
“Irina enjoyed the novel, she said the plot was great, but my writing was too formal and old fashioned to do it justice,” Alec said.
“Confident that Claire would retain the plot, I offered it to her on an unfettered opportunity basis.
“I sent Irina’s recommendations to Claire, and she breathed new life into the characters, and in abbreviating some content chose what she considered was the essential storyline.”
Their hard work was not without reward, with the Cantella finally published and launched in February.
“I am very proud to be associated with Alec,” Claire said.
“He has such a talent and command of words, descriptions and knowledge of genealogy, and I admire his talent enormously.
“This is why I have devoted my time and effort into this novel, and take pride in its fruition.
“I only hope people enjoy the story, and the characters.
“I am sure those who purchase Cantella will be pleasantly surprised.”
Cantella is available for purchase from Gladstone Printing Services, Kin Kora Newsagency and Post Office and the Mt Larcom Newsagency for $20.
After a debilitating accident, Floyd is forced to return to Cantella, his family home, his parents, and the diaries of his great-grandfather, David Evans.
An adventurer, Dave sailed from England in the 1800s to settle in Calliope, Queensland, and his resilience in the face of adversity was Floyd’s saving grace.