March 13th, 2013
For Boyne City
To all of you that live, like me, along one of the most beautiful lakes in the US. This post is for you (and to be shared with everyone else 🙂
This is my first winter living up north since I moved from Australia last year, and I have to say, I could have used a bit of an easier winter to transition with. I’m over the snow, and can’t wait for spring! But as I type, big fluffy flakes are pummeling down out of the sky. Oh, when will it end? I know this is part of living up here, and in exchange we get a beautiful wee town that is absolutely amazing in the summer. I’m holding out for that!
Today, there is an article about Watershed in the Boyne City Gazette. For my fellow BC residents, I have promised a sneak peak at the first chapter. This coincides nicely with my publisher’s release yesterday!
I will keep this post up for a bit as I totally know how it is to read a newspaper a few days late. Below is the start to the chapter. You can find the entire first chapter here. First chapter of Watershed by Cd Brennan
I hope you enjoy! If you do, please spread the word.
Maggie swatted the flies away from her face. The late afternoon heat was intense, sweat spots forming on her tank top. Her feet were dusty from pacing the side of the road in her flip-flops, and she’d left her big sun hat on the bus, long gone, and no sign of Josephine. For that matter, a single car hadn’t passed for the twenty minutes she’d been waiting.
Her fair skin burned under the hot Australian sun. Although she had layered on the sunscreen, her skin hadn’t seen this much exposure in the twenty-six years of her life. She reconsidered sheltering under a small clump of bush off the side of the road. Getting to the shade meant digging her trainers from her backpack, and that meant spilling the guts of her belongings onto the side of the Capricorn Highway to find them. It exhausted her thinking about it.
She raised her hand, shielding her eyes from the light, squinting in the direction she imagined Josephine would come. She was somewhere west of Emerald. What would she do if Josephine didn’t turn up? She didn’t even have any water left.
Heat simmered over the black bitumen. The terrain was completely different than what she’d known in Ireland, where there was an amorphous quality to the landscape. Green fields flowed into green trees, fitting against the gray buildings and sky. Here, everything was so–defined. There was the sky and the land and the one tree in the middle of a paddock a person couldn’t help but notice.
Now everything looked a dull brown, not how Georgina had described it. Maggie did recognize, however, the gum trees she had raved about.
“The bush is a beautiful place, not many see it that way. They aren’t looking at it right. The gum trees–that’s the eucalyptus, you know–set a wonderful fabric to the land with their leaves full of texture and their white bark contrasting against the red soil.” Georgina had become animated, waving her hand in front of her like she was painting a picture. “And when it rains, everything turns green in front of your eyes and the rain powers the rivers along beds that were moments before nothing more than rock and weed.”
Maggie agreed on the rock and weed. It was everywhere. Long grasses bordered the road and scattered over the land. There were plenty of short, scrub-like bushes, and the cone-shaped statues of red dirt that speckled the canvas must be termite mounds.
Sweat from her forehead settled in the corner of her eye and stung. Feckin’ great. She swiveled around to look the other direction and caught a glint of metal off the sun.
Someone was coming! Her stomach lurched. As it approached, she watched the mirage change to an old beatup white truck with a metal tray in the back. It had a black snorkel and a large radio antenna on the bull bar.
Please, Mary, let it be Josephine. What if Georgina hadn’t been able to ring her daughter? What if they didn’t stop? What if they did and the person in the truck was some nutter like the guy in Wolf Creek?
Why had she even watched that movie before she came to Australia? She hadn’t been able to sleep for four days after she’d seen the horror flick about a remote bushman who helped lost or stranded tourists by towing them back to his camp in the middle of nowhere, only to drug their drinking water and have his way with them. So. Very. Disturbing.
Maggie half raised her arm to wave the driver down, but the vehicle had started slowing. She walked toward the truck as it came to a stop. A dog in the back lunged at its chain and barked as she cautiously approached the window.