Aliens in Kalgoorlie (Post 95)
Aliens in Kalgoorlie (2002) is the result of a Book Week trip I made to Kalgoorlie Boulder in 2001. I never expected to go to Kalgoorlie Boulder, but I was invited there by a Welsh librarian. He and I are both members of an on-line book discussion group devoted to the works of the late Diana Wynne Jones. We somehow got into a conversation about Welsh dragons, and he asked me if I'd like to hop on a dragon and fly to Kalgoorlie to do talks and workshops at the library. I said yes, and to my surprise it turned out he'd discussed it with the head librarian and she sent me an official invitation.
I enjoyed doing the workshops, and also looking about Kalgoorlie Boulder. The library accommodated me in a motel, and one evening I was startled when the motel shook. It devolved they'd been blasting at the super pit. No one had warned me because they were so used to it themselves.
Kalgoorlie Boulder is a remote place. The librarian told me few people drive out of the city because there's nowhere to go. It occurred to me it would be a good place for an alien invasion.
In the story, eleven-year-old Sophie Spinner starts seeing strangers around town. Being curious, and the daughter of a police officer, she soon spots they are mixed-up copies of locals. They never seem to speak or to buy anything. She sees a stranger behaving oddly and identifies a copy of her own shoes with a clearly-identifiable stain on the toe. The girl does speak, and tells Sophie her name is Poshie Pinners. Sophie and Poshie extract information from one another, and Sophie thinks they were becoming friends. Bu what is Poshie really up to?
This book came out under the pen name Sara Chen. Sara is a form of my real first name, Sally. I can't remember where I got Chen from.
I have happy memories of my brief time in Kal-Boul. Sometimes I wonder if any of the children I worked with remember me.
I still offer talks and workshops for schools and libraries. You can check out the options for 2017 here.
About the Blog
Sally is Sally Odgers; author, manuscript assessor, editor, anthologist and reader. She runs http://www.affordablemanuscriptassessments.com and Prints Charming Books. (Sally is me, by the way, and I am lots of other things too, but these are the relevant ones for now.)
The goal for 2017 is to write a post a day profiling the background behind one of my books; how it came to be written, what it's about, and any things of note that happened along the way. If you're an author, an aspiring author, a reader or just someone who enjoys windows into worlds, you might find this fun. The books are not in any special order, but will be assigned approximate dates, and pictures, where they exist. If you enjoyed a post, or want to ask about any of my books or my manuscript assessment service, post a comment and I'll get back to you.