Shipwrecks on the West Australian coast have been firing the imagination of writers since 1629, when the Batavia sank at the Houtman Abrolhos Islands. Those islands account for more than ninety known shipwrecks – and there's plenty more where those came from.
With my natural love for the ocean, I'm far from immune to the waves of inspiration emanating from my coast, so all of my stories are set in or near the water. From my paranormal romance series about mermaids – the Ocean's Gift series – to my thrillers in the Nightmares Trilogy, where the story starts with a girl's body found dumped on a beach after she's been held captive in a disused coastal defence bunker – the water spills over into them all.
Often, it's the allure of shipwrecks and the tragic history surrounding them. Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction, for there are mysteries that can never be solved. How did a man survive three weeks at sea, yet drown when he almost reached home? What happens to the ship's cat when her vessel sinks? And how can an entire ship disappear with the family silver?
While I write plenty of fiction, I've also chosen to release some of my extensive background research for the morbidly curious. I can't write fiction unless I know the setting intimately – not just the history and the geography, but the smell of the site and who lives there…as well as the nearest watering hole. And by watering hole, I mean both the water supply and the local pub.
In the case of shipwrecks, that means I've read the original news articles, diaries and ships' logs, plus visited the site where the ship went down to breathe the same air, stumble over the same ground and photograph everything else. That's left me uniquely placed to share some shipwreck videos, in my series on YouTube – Demelza Carlton's Cursed Coast. There is no fiction in these – the facts are curious enough.
The first two episodes – Columbia and Cumberland – tell of shipwrecks that play a part in my Ocean's Gift series. In fact, the mysterious tale of the Columbia is what inspired the Ocean's Gift series in the first place.
The third episode tells the little-known tale of a ship's cat on the Cambria.
This week's episode will go live tomorrow and it involves the tale of the Royal Australian Navy's first sea battle in the Indian Ocean in World War I. The second book in my Ocean's Gift series, Ocean's Infiltrator, opens with this battle, but the true story needs no fiction to make it remarkable.
Leave a comment on this post for your chance to win an ebook copy of Ocean's Gift – my paranormal romance about fishing, lobsters, beer and boobs at some cursed islands off the West Australian coast.
Thank you for visiting my website as part of the Coastal Romance Christmas Blog Hop – don't forget to enter the giveaway and check out some of the other fascinating posts!
Welcome to the Coastal Romance Christmas Blog Hop
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The members of this group are authors and readers who love reading romance by the water, whether it be the ocean, a lake, a tropical island or any other body of water where our heroes and heroines fall in love and have happily ever after!
Some of the authors have combined their resources and planned this blog hop. Visit their blogs by clicking on their names and you have the opportunity of winning:
So what are you waiting for? Come visit, get clicking and enter EVERY day.
It's like an advent calendar so bookmark it and open a blog every day on the calendar below until Christmas! The more blogs you read, the more entries you have, and the more chances of winning the fabulous prize!
Our Christmas Blog Hop Calendar