Behind The Scenes
All They Need
For some reason, this book gave me hell. The story I had outlined for Mel and Flynn refused to work for me, and I started this book four times before I finally started to feel that things were clicking. Flynn went from being a reclusive, damaged millionaire to a caring, overwhelmed son, and Mel morphed from an environmentally passionate hippy to a woman who was struggling to regain her sense of herself. In short, they became people for me instead of character ideas that I’d roughly sketched when writing my proposal. Phew! Then it was just a matter of finding a way for them to understand and come to love one another.
I really enjoyed writing about all the garden elements in this book. Having inherited someone else’s garden when we bought our new house recently, I have a new appreciation for the time and effort required to keep things looking effortlessly natural and beautiful. I have a new appreciation for good garden design, too. Edna Walling was one of the best, an unusual and talented woman. Her gardens are still renowned today in Australia.
Originally I’d planned for there to be a big confrontation between Mel and Flynn toward the end of the book, a necessary catharsis to help Mel get beyond her final qualms and fears. But in the writing, I realised that these two people were beyond those kinds of misunderstandings. As my editor so aptly phrased it, Mel’s problems were in her head, so the resolution for her issues needed to be (as she put it) “an inside job.” It took me a while to work out what form that might take (did I mention that this book gave me hell?) but I finally got there. I like to think it was an ending that was entirely appropriate to Flynn and Mel’s journey together. I hope you agree!