Julie Dollery used to juggle a job at IBM while writing fan fiction online. When she was made redundant, the 50-year-old Sanctuary Lakes resident used it as an opportunity to focus on her writing. She tells Charlene Macaulay about completing her first book, and her love of Wyndham.

 

What’s your connection to Wyndham?

We’ve been here 11 years in November. This was about the third house in this little estate, so we’ve seen it grow up around us.

We were up in the Dandenong Ranges … and we were leaving the house before six in the morning and not getting home until six at night because of the travelling in and out of town. We started looking at where next, and the choice we came down to was a 10-square apartment in the Docklands, a mini townhouse in somewhere like Yarraville, or we could have a family home here.

We wanted somewhere that was new, and vibrant, and growing, and multicultural. When we moved here there were cows over the back fence – we miss the cows!

What do you like about Wyndham?

The best thing I could say for Point Cook and Wyndham is, as we’ve seen it grow, we’ve seen an active effort to build infrastructure along with the community. We’ve seen schools go in, libraries go in, new shopping centres go in, roads widened. There’s been a clear infrastructure improvement.

How have you found being a full-time writer?

When I became redundant from IBM 12 months ago, my husband and I very much made the decision of, if not now, then when?

I’d had an interest in writing for some years and had been writing informally and publishing online for free. We were financially in the situation where we were able to see how it goes. I’ve been very, very lucky that my husband has been so supportive. We’re partners in this; he contributes about as much to the plot as I do. He’s the person I bounce ideas off if I’m stuck.

How did you get into writing?

A friend introduced me to fan fiction online – they’re original stories written on the basis of existing characters. When I took my redundancy I really started thinking about what it would take to shift from [fan fiction]. It took me about 12 months to write [Fallen for You] online as a serialised version; it’s probably taken me about six months to polish it to where I wanted it to be. It is available now on Amazon worldwide, both on kindle and in paperback.

What’s your favourite restaurant or cafe?

We love Rendezvous at Sanctuary Lakes, it’s a really nice cross between a family restaurant and a decent bar with a nice menu.

If there was something you could change about this area, what would it be?

The train services continue to be overcrowded. You only have to drive past the parking lots at train stations … they are bursting. The demand is there, it’s the supply that’s lacking.

I know my husband would take the train in if he thought he could get a seat and sit down and read, or work.