Read the First Letter from Ella-Louise for FREE

Friday 6th January, 2012

Dear Jude,

Please excuse the crappy yellow legal pad. Had I waited to find fancy stationery, I might never have sat down to write. Your parents are still listed at Blecker Street, so I’m sending the letter there and hopefully they’ll pass it on to you.

Why don’t I just ring your dad, see if you’re alive and well, and get your phone number or an email address? I can’t. I need to write and do it old school with pen and paper. Think about each word before I put it down (and swear because my hand is already aching from writing more than I have in a decade). To send an email would be like warping the fabric of space and time. But then again, writing a letter to you after so long feels a little like that anyway.

When we sat at The Point watching the sun come up on 1992, I believed in an eternity of New Year’s Eves with you, my best friend, by my side. I had no idea it would be our last.

Just so you know, it hasn’t taken me twenty years to forgive you for not showing up at my farewell party. Or at the bus the next day. You did me a favour. Had you come to say good-bye, I don’t think I would have had the courage to go and leave you behind.

I quit my job at the end of last year. Decided it was time for a sea change, to reassess what’s important in life. Important to me. I’ve bought an old weatherboard cottage just up the coast from Coffs Harbour. It’s not Piper’s Reach (I couldn’t go back there) but I’m near the ocean again. I can lie awake at night and hear the crash of  the waves, smell the salt and seaweed.

Finding the shoebox with your letters and other teenage stuff (I still have the chewie wrapper you gave me the first day we met) it felt like no time had passed. But at the same time, I feel like I’ve lived several lives since then. Guess I have in a way.

Reading your old letters, there were events I remembered and others I’d forgotten — like the first thing I ever said to you was I didn’t kiss boys, so you thought I was a lesbian until I pashed Bart Lehmann at the Year 10 social. Shit! Some things and some people are best left forgotten. But you are not one of those people, Jude. Despite the years of silence, I never forgot you.

You always said The Waterboys wrote ‘The Whole of the Moon’ about us, and while you said it was me seeing the whole of the moon, it was you who was the optimist. No one has ever filled those shoes since I left Pipers.

I’m done with the wandering in the wilderness. I want to reconnect with what I left behind. I hope you have the time and inclination to write back. I could use a friend like you in my life (and no, that’s not code for ‘I’m going through a messy divorce’).

Always your

Ella-Louise

xxx

P.S. I realised I still press hard enough for your patented brand of reverse Braille. Some things never change!

P.P.S: Placebo’s ‘Pure Morning’ is playing. The mention of stormy weather, friends in need, and thoughts compressing all seem rather fitting as I fold this up and go in search of an envelope.

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Reaching “The End” for The Second Time

A few weeks ago we sat down in our respective chairs, me in Sydney, Jodi in Brisbane, to read through the last forty pages of edits.

We were reaching “The End” for the second time. It’s probably about the fourth time: the first time we wrote it, when our readers reached “The End,” during our own edits, and lastly, reading through the edits together.

And it was emotional. Very emotional.

We both wrote up how we responded to reaching “The End” and you can read Adam’s post, Tears in the Writer, Tears in the Reader, and Jodi’s post, Goodbye Jude and Ella-Louise.

Meanwhile, the edited version is with our trusted reader, Rus, and Season 3 is sent to our editor, Toni.

While we wait for the feedback and comments we are putting together all the bits and pieces ready for out assault on the publishing world.

Interviewed by Judge Whisky

The only thing I expected from Adam was he’d write a compelling letter once a fortnight, and where possible, provide legible handwriting! ~ Jodi

Judge Whisky hosts us for the final hiatus interview today. An avid reader and supporter from the first letter, plus a self-proclaimed ‘non-commenter’ because of the emotional impact of the letters, Judge gets the dirt on the project’s inception, expectation and faith in partnerships, directional intentions and outcomes, the intersection of fiction and real life in characterisation, evolving a series soundtrack and just how far we dare to dream ahead. And, for those of you burning to know about jellyfish and breast implants…you won’t be disappointed.

Writing this series has exceeded my expectations. I get to write an intriguing character, balanced against the revelations of Jodi’s character, their former friendship, the knowledge they have now, and I get to have a lot of fun doing it. ~ Adam

Miss last week’s interview with Laura Meyer? You can read it here, including an interesting discussion in the comments section about strengthening craft by  living vicariously on the page.

Interviewed By Laura Meyer

Until we kicked into Season Two, I was doing well. I’d had my early teary moments as I excavated Ella-Louise’s past, and then I just got on with it. Ella-Louise kind of gave up trying to seduce Jude via letter and things settled into a holding pattern. ~ Jodi

We had the pleasure to be grilled interviewed by Laura Meyer in the lead up to the conclusion of Season One.

Laura first interviewed us on April 2nd in the lead up to launch day. Today Laura revisits questions of form, story and direction, and throws in a few new one regarding fans, the difficulties of abiding by the No Spoilers Policy (NSP), how we’re coping with the emotional intensity of writing the serial and special questions deconstructing the characters of Jude and Ella-Louise.

Season Two has gone into a territory I didn’t think it would go so the emotional toll is heavier and more intense for me. It has made writing Jude a whole lot harder. ~ Adam

It’s epic, and you can read the complete interview here.

Post Script

And thus we come to end of (what we are calling) Season One with a taster of what is to come in Season Two.

Thank You

We thank you, our small, but dedicated cult following, who have spent the last five months with us as we’ve shared Ella-Louise and Jude’s story, passing it on to family and friends once you were hooked.

What began as a bit of a crazy idea at the end of 2009 and birthed earlier this year on a beach among wet, sandy, squealing children, has taken us on a journey neither of us really anticipated taking. Nine months later we have reached a point in the lives of our characters we never thought possible. We are intertwined intimately in their lives. They talk to us and are with us constantly.

We’ve been blessed to experience first hand, how readers become emotionally invested in characters, and care for them as much as we do. We know from comments that living vicariously through the lives of Jude and Ella-Louise has struck quiet moments of people’s lives, keeping them from reading, or pushing them to confront what’s inside. While it is a thrill to write Jude and Ella-Louise, it is also a responsibility we take seriously

Season 1 ends with Jude’s letter hinting at something BIG. Think of it as a season ending cliff-hanger. But you will have to wait as we take a two week break.

Interviews

During the hiatus, our newest writing partners, Laura Meyer (@L_Meyer) and Joshua Londero (@judgewhisky), grill us about Piper’s Reach. We’ll post up links so you get all the interview/behind the scenes juiciness. Laura’s interview will be aired Tuesday, 4th September and Josh’s on the 11th September.

Facebook

We’ve launched a Facebook Fan Page where all the readers can mingle and comment in the one place. At the moment there are a bunch of new and old photos up, including sneaky looks at the next three letters. We’d love to hear your thoughts on what comes next for Jude and Ella-Louise, or your thoughts on what happened at the reunion.

On The Horizon

Season Two commences with Jude’s “next letter” live Tuesday, 18th September, 9am Australian time.

There’s a storm coming.

Blog Tour: Day 4 with Tuesday Serial

Tuesday Serial is the place to read a wide range of weekly serial fiction. It is also the place where Post Marked: Piper’s Reach will be linked.

Today we are sipping virtual cups of tea, making ourselves comfortable and talking about the process of composing a serial, dividing up the work and our aims for the project.

It was Adam’s idea for the characters to be two long-lost friends getting back in touch with each other and Adam later sent me a text message asking if I thought perhaps these two had harboured crushes but they’d never synced up to let them hook up… and hey presto… my character appeared – Jodi

With no real idea who our characters were, we continued to toss ideas back and forth. This is how we settled on the name of the town and its origins, the characters’ names and a little bit about their back story. We had no endpoint in mind when the first letter was written, a bit like a shot in the dark, a character hoping, trying, wanting to reconnect with the past, but not sure if there will be reciprocation. In this way, it felt “real” for the characters – Adam

To read the full interview, click here.

Blog Tour: Day 3 with Tim VanSant

Today Tim VanSant hosts Day 3 of the Piper’s Reach Blog Tour.

He asks us about the differences between instant and delayed gratification in writing, the difference between seeing it now and having to wait for the putt-putt-putt of the postie’s motorbike, followed by the inevitable squeal of brakes.

…different experiences can alter our perception and experience of time. Pain/discomfort is one of the greatest distorters of time…  Jodi

Writing letters tempers the need for instantaneous gratification. Adam

Letter writing is intimate. It’s a personal, shared experience between the writer and the reader, not a public tweet or Facebook status update. Adam

I see letter writing as an antidote to the fast paced, interconnected lifestyle we are attuned to living now. There is an intimacy and efficacy absent in email, which lives in letters. Jodi

You can read the full interview here.

Pre-Release Tour

In the lead up to the release of the first episode of Post Marked: Piper’s Reach Adam and Jodi are hitting the virtual road.

Nine Days. Nine launch ambassadors. Nine interviews.

Monday 2nd April
Laura Meyer – I’m Not the Messiah Just a Very busy Mum
Tuesday 3rd April
Paul Anderson – Once Upon in the West of London
Wednesday 4th April
Tim VanSant – otoh
Thursday 5th April
PJ Kaiser – Tuesday Serial
Friday 6th April
Alan Baxter – The Word
Saturday 7th April
Nicole R Murphy – Nicole Murphy
Sunday 8th April
Victoria Boulton – Victoria Boulton Writes
Monday 9th April
Rebecca Emin – Ramblings of a Rusty Writer
Tuesday 10th
Icy Sedgwick – Icy’s Blunt Pencil