Anne here, and today it's a privilege and a pleasure to have the wonderful Australian historical crime writer, Sulari Gentill, visit us for the second time.
Anne: welcome back to the Word Wenches, Sulari. When you were last here, you were about to embark on a tour of the USA with three other Australian crime writers. (See photo on the right.) That seemed to go really well, but then you were plunged into the horrors of the recent Australian bushfires, with your home, family and animals at risk, you and your younger son and the dogs evacuated, while your husband and eighteen year old son, both members of the RFS (Rural Fire Service — a Volunteer Firefighters Organization) stayed back to fight the fires. They were on the fire front in trucks that were melting, facing flames that were sixty metres (200 ft) high — in what seemed an endless, impossible battle. (Listen to Sulari describing in her own eloquent words what it was like to live through.)
It must have been an appalling time for you. We Wenches were following your situation on Facebook and elsewhere and, like the rest of the world, felt helpless and horrified. (Read the NYT article about it.)
You've emerged with your family intact, your house smoke-damaged but (just) intact and the rest of the farm burned. And yet, you've gone on to help others with the post-fire clear up, start on the rebuilding and replanting of your own farm, and still somehow managed to keep writing.