Bookings are now open for my three 2020 residential writing retreats, co-tutored with RNA Chair Alison May. Details can be found here.
Locations From The Farmer Needs A Wife
I love Sydney. These high rise buildings at Milsons Point (where Helen lives) offer the most amazing views. While the tourists flock to the Opera House – for the locals, it’s the bridge that defines the city. And the park under the bridge is a wonderful place for a picnic (as Matt discovers).
Scone is one of Australia’s premier horse breeding areas. This photo is me with an Australian Stock Horse named ‘Pink Panther’ (because she was a rose grey when she was a foal). When this was taken, we were just beginning her training, doing the sort of things Matt is doing with Granny when we meet him in Chapter three.
This photo was taken from a friend’s flat on Queensland’s Gold Coast. The flat Donna is living in before she heads to the outback is not quite as high above the beach as this one – and the view is not quite as good. The beach, however, is fabulous whichever way you look at it.
River Downs Station
This is the type of windmill Peter is repairing when we join him at the start of chapter three. They are found throughout the outback and are used to bring underground water to the surface in places where it seldom rains, and the rivers are often dry for much of the year. The sound of the mill clanging is an enduring memory of growing up in the bush.
When I was researching the book, my cane farmer helper Scott sent me this photo of a sugarcane harvester. Cane growers work very hard during planting and harvesting, but for large periods of time they simply have to wait for the cane to grow. That’s when Greg has time to spend in his jewellery workshop.
The first time I visited Townsville, I was immediately struck by Castle Hill – as Molly is in chapter four. It dominates the town and Molly and I are not the only people to have taken photos of it. I’ve never been to the top. Perhaps next time I visit Townsville I should.
The Hunter Valley is a fabulous place to spend a weekend. It’s just a short drive from Sydney. You can tour the wineries, sample the wines and dine at some very fine restaurants. There are some very large wineries there which provided the inspiration for Bradford Wines
While researching the book, I visited a boutique winery in Queensland, where I found these amazing diamante studded glasses. The owners of Warrego Wines were very helpful with my research – and the glasses just had to be included in the book, and who better to give them to but Leigh.
- Return to The Farmer Needs A Wife
- The making of The Farmer Needs A Wife
- A short story that formed the seed of one of the romances
- Find the farms and towns from the novel on a map of Australia
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