Three times a charm for bestselling author O'Brien

AUTHOR Deborah O'Brien never intended to write a trilogy - it just happened.

Her latest work is A Place of Her Own, which follows the bestselling Mr Chen's Emporium and The Jade Widow.

All have a historic thread and the latest is about Angie starting over in a town after the death of her beloved Phil.

These days Ms O'Brien divides her time between Oatley West and a country cottage in south-western NSW.

The cottage is on the banks of a spring-fed creek frequented by platypus and it is there that the visual artist and teacher writes at an old mahogany desk and sketches in pen and ink.

"When I'm at Oatley West, I usually get so busy doing things such as ironing and shopping, but when I get to the country I want to keep writing," Ms O'Brien said.

"It gets compulsive, sometimes I forget to have lunch."

The author grew up in Hurstville and expanded on some of her country grandmother's stories for her fiction.

"I remember writing stories as a small child and I never thought about writing a novel but my mother always believed in my ability to write stories," she said.

She said the town in her books is fictitious and is a composite of many gold-rush towns, not one place in particular, as many of her fans believe.

Deborah O’Brien will give an author’s talk at 1pm, Thursday, May 1, at Hurstville Library, cnr Queens Road and Dora Street, Hurstville; light refreshments from 12.30pm. Bookings essential: 93306142.

RRP for A Place of Her Own is $32.99.

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