Based on True Stories

Margaret’s Story follows a woman living in a nursing home and her dysfunctional family’s actions both in the past and present. What was the inspiration for the setup to your story?

The inspiration for writing Margaret’s Story came from the time when nursing facilities were being reported in the media as places in which aged people were placed and abandoned by their families.

Margaret endured giving up a child, a husband with bipolar disorder, and children in toxic relationships. What were some driving ideals behind your character’s development?

Just like many novelists, my stories are based on true stories I have encountered interwoven with a fictional overarching narrative.

What were some themes that were important for you to explore in this book?

I wanted to show the readers how mental illness can strike suddenly with resultant ramifications for the victim and his family and how surrendering a baby for adoption leaves an indelible mark on the birth mother.

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Margaret, a resident in a nursing home, has been divorcedfrom her husband who suffered from bipolar disorder. Her son Peter and her daughter Phoebe have placed her in this care facility after selling the family home. Both couples, Phoebe and her husband Neil and Peter and his wife Adriana, are in unhappy toxic relationships. Adriana however manages to divorce Peter and moves to Australia. But Peter and Phoebe are not the only two children that Margaret has. Before her marriage, Margaret had given birth to a son who was adopted by a Canadian couple. She always thought of this child and yearned to see him again. The plot takes a turn when by sheer coincidence, Adriana meets Margaret s son in Sydney.


A baby surrendered for adoption, the trauma of mental illness, a dysfunctional family. Can happiness be achieved or what fate awaits this ordinary woman called Margaret?


From an early age, Annette was encouraged to write and was awarded several prizes for English. A native of Sydney, Australia, she published a short story at the age of twelve. She remained passionate to her writing, but the demands of raising a family left no time to pursue her interest. Now retired, Annette has reignited her passion and written six books with the seventh nearing completion. Annette lives with her partner, Stephen, at Neutral Bay, a suburb on Sydney Harbour. She has two sons, Mark and Brett, two grandsons, Jaime and Flynn and a sister, Maree.

Lodgers Novel Inspiration

Hi dear readers,

I hope you all are well and have devoured lots of books in the Covid lockdown. My deepest sympathies go to anybody who has lost loved ones during this terrible time.

If you enjoyed my previous novel, The Dark Before The Dawn you will be totally engrossed in my latest work The Lodgers which is a tale comprised of disparate characters boarding in an old lodging house on the seafront at Brighton UK.

My inspiration for the novel came from a discussion with a friend of mine who had resided in a similar establishment in London in 1960. He told me about the creaking stairs, the shared bathroom and a basin which had a constant dripping tap. There was an aged army major living there as a permanent resident and also a lady who had been a dancer in the vaudeville shows.

Hence the landlady Mabel was based on this woman and Arthur became the old army major. I was always interested in the plight of unmarried mothers especially the girls spirited away from Ireland so Therese was invented. My interest in the World Wars and the terrible repercussions resulting from them led to the characters, Ned, his mother and also poor Judy who is admirably cared for by her recovering alcoholic sister Irene who assumes the role of matriarch in the lodging house. I included the south of France where I have travelled and my own beloved country, the wide brown land of Australia.

I do hope you will enjoy this novel as much as I enjoyed writing it.

Best wishes and happy reading