ANNE A GALLO - INDIE AUTHOR
It is 1975 and a young dark-haired girl unnoticed by the world…and who works serving store customers in the modest family fruit shop…
Her family migrated to Australia in mid-1960s from beautiful Italy...Gabriella works hard in the family’s fruit shop under the overbearing control of her father. She becomes depressed and introverted and isolated from the social world a teenager craves.
She resents the fact her brother, Enzo, can study while she had to leave school at 15 to work. She finds she is torn living within the Italian and the Australian way of modern life.
Knowing the only way out, and to get far away from her father’s control, is to marry a better man; then Gabriella meets Aldo, an older, single Italian at the wedding of her cousin. She is swept off her feet by Aldo’s charms and looks and having fallen in love with him, they wed soon after. But it does not take long for Gabriella to realise that Aldo is not the charming man she thought he was as his anger and violence grows towards her, she becomes afraid of her husband, the man she once loved. She gains the strength to leave Aldo and begins to live her life as an independent woman. Her father is outraged and commands Gabriella to return to her husband, but she stands firm in her resolve.
And for the next part of her life, lives the life she chooses…
Gabriella Campania, approaching womanhood, narrates her story.
“An intimate and emotional journey of a young woman facing her life choices…beautiful and moving…a really well told story…” Nicole, IndieBook Reviewer.
Anne Gallo has had a very eventful life and varied professions. Always in the background has been her passion for creative writing. Leading her at one stage to motivate others to write, facilitating creative writing groups and workshops on how to write your life story. Not having the opportunity to an education in her earlier life Anne went on to become a mature age university student, whilst raising three children. Anne now balances her life as a lawyer and mediator and delves into her imaginary world to write fiction.
Who inspires you?
Women who have had challenging lives but worked through them to come out to live better lives. Also, Elizabeth Jolley as an older woman who was finally published in her 60's. This kept me going when my writing was sidelined for other career goals.
How many books have you published?
None, before now!
When did you first realise you wanted to be a writer?
In my early teens.
How long does it take you to write a book?
The first book I wrote called, “Our Destiny” took me four months and was 60,000 words,
I wrote many years ago. Gabriella” is an off shoot of the first book I wrote.
This took several years of stop and starts to be completed late in 2019.
What is your work schedule like when you're writing?
I write better when I have a set goal, I prefer to write late at night, I am not a morning person.
What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?
Delve into the character’s emotions, exploring different views.
How did you find the publishing process?
I am in the early stages of this process of self-publishing through Shawline Publishing Group. I like the concept of having the assistance of Shawline to guide me through the process and also take the hard work out of it for me.
Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?
When I wrote Our Destiny, I did some research on the migration history of the early 1960's but most of the information has come from my own life experience and developed skill of character building.
When did you write your first book and how old were you?
In 1989 and I was about 32 years old.
What do you like to do when you're not writing?
I like to travel, spend time with my family and friends and nature walks, beach and the bush.
What does your family think of your writing?
They are over it, after talking about my book for years. However, they are happy for my achieving this dream of having my first book published and they have been really supportive because they know what it means to me.
What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your books?
Writing the hard things, the main character goes through, some of which I have personal experience.
How many books have you written? Which is your favourite?
Two, second book is generated from book one.
Do you have any suggestions to help others become a better writer? If so, what are they?
I believe that anyone can write if we have a story to tell and we discipline ourselves to write, review, edit and do it all over again until you are satisfied that is all you have.
I believe in the free flow writing where you just write without the editor in the background of your mind,
otherwise you may never begin.
Do you like to create books for adults/kids/cause? Why?
I have written many short stories over the years (none published) and mainly for adult fiction, but
some from my personal experience.
I do have a few ideas for Children illustration books.
What do you think makes a good story?
Getting the reader to relate to the character and making sure the story has movement, where the plot begins with a challenge and the middle is how the challenge is overcome and the end is the positive resolution. The aim is to see that the character has grown from their experience.
As a child, what did you want to do when you grew up?
This is a very interesting questions, as I’ve had a few ambitions, from my early teens I wanted to be singer and then I wanted to write as I loved to read and I thought I could do it well; the challenge for me was having to leave school at 14 after my mother died and being in Australia for only 5 years meant that I lacked the English skills. I attribute my love for reading and writing that led me to further education and to go on to university and then became a lawyer.
What are your plans for your future book/s?
I believe that I have left this book with a pathway to a sequel and an off shoot of a story about Gabriella’s sister, Maria. I also have mulling in the background an idea for a non-fiction book in dispute resolution.
What tips would you share with other new writers about your learning?
Keep learning and perfecting your writing, I am a strong advocate of the writing groups to share your craft and obtain some constructive feedback, as writing is a solitary experience it is always good to get together with like minded people.
Please write a few paragraphs on why you wrote this book - what were your inspirations?
I mentioned earlier it has been my ambition to write for a long time. I wrote Our Destiny based on a family experience migrating to Australia from Italy, (some aspects were from my personal experiences), but I created a fictional family. Gabriella is the oldest child of that family. I decided to write a new book from Gabriella’s perspective written in first person. I felt I was able to write her story with more depth, feeling and emotions this way. I also wanted to depict the life of a woman raised in a strict family and not having the ability to choose a career or get an education.
How you decided on the characters in the book would be an interesting concept to describe for us please?
I wanted to develop a strong woman in Gabriella, who was torn between the confines of her family culture and the new world the family came into when they migrated to Australia. I tried to add characters that would highlight the Italian experience in migrations and to create drama, friction and show other ways of living, for instance I created Linda, Gabriella’s school friend to depict the experiences of an Australian teenager’s life pitted against Gabriella’s experience ruled by her dominant often bullish father. I created Gabriella’s brother Enzo, to show the different treatments the male child in a family gets from the female. I created Joe as the family friend who was madly in love with Gabriella, but Gabriella was not physically attracted to him, I contrasted Joe with Aldo who Gabriella falls in love with. I wanted to create that friction we often face in life where our emotions often lead us to make the wrong decisions, Gabriella was blinded by her attraction to Aldo, another angle was the restrictive courtship that Gabriella had with Aldo not given an opportunity to get to know Aldo better to gauge her feelings for him before she decided to get married..
What drew you to the subject matter or the characters?
I felt that the cultural aspects of the treatment of a female child in a family against a male child was an interesting concept to draw out and the cultural view that woman is a chattel of men during their lifetime. Going from father to husband with no voice on how they can live their lives. Gabriella felt that she either remained at home to be dictated by her father or get married, when she met Aldo she thought that it was the escape she was seeking to leave home and her dominant father only to find that her life was no better after her marriage. I wanted to end the story so that through the experiences that were very painful for Gabriella, she came out of it as a strong independent woman who can now live her life in her own right. Therefore, at the end of the novel she does not have a love interest, yet there is a possibility that she may get together with Joe. That is where I would like to develop Book two.
What was the biggest challenge when writing the book?
Having the head space and time to work on it so much has happened in my life. My addiction to university study was one of them. I also more recently I went through a period where I was unwell and unable to work, I had the time but emotionally not able to get into writing. Interestingly, it was after I went back to work with less time that I was determined to get back to my first love of writing and in mid-2019 I undertook a one day workshop on how to finish your Novel at Victorian Writers Centre. In September 2019 I took up the Victorian Writers challenge of writing 30 thousand words in 30 days, with that motivation I finished the book resulting in the novel being 106 thousand words. I later found out it needed to be 80 thousands to get it published, so I had to cull, that was hard and a challenge as there was so much I wanted to remain in the story.
Include any interesting experiences you might’ve had during the research for the book,
or while writing or publishing the book:
When I attended the “finish your novel” workshop last year the facilitator said what motivated her to finish was she attended a workshop and another writer had the same idea for her novel. Then as we were introducing ourselves around the table a woman a few places away from me said that she was wanting to write a novel based in the 1960 and woman’s experiences in marriage and domestic violence. I thought that is like my book. We all had a laugh when I introduced myself and said that my novel had been 30 years in gestation and my family were sick of hearing me talk about my book. This is where the facilitator said “Anne, more writing less talking”
Requests welcomed for further information about the author –
Book copies for review and discussion
Full media kit, inc images and Q&A about the book by the author
Interviews can be arranged via Skype, phone or email.
Book is available for purchase upon release at all great Australian book stores
and online direct at www.indiebooksaust.com.au
Thank you for supporting new Independent authors in Australia,
and we welcome further communications with you in the future.
Shawline Publishing Group