Friday, November 18, 2011

Jessica follows up on Ruby’s Campaign

IT’S not often your fictitious novel becomes reality but that’s exactly what happened to author Jessica Rudd, daughter of former prime minister Kevin Rudd.
   The 26-year-old’s first chick-lit novel Campaign Ruby, which was based around the plot of a prime minister overthrown by his female deputy, was released just as her dad’s leadership was challenged by now Prime Minister Julia Gillard.
   Her second penning, Ruby Blues, is a follow up to the first novel and finds the main character Ruby Stanhope going through the lows experienced when working with a first-term government that isn’t faring too well.
   Speaking to Jessica during her whirlwind book tour around the country, the Canberra-born, Brisbaneraised and now Beijing-based writer said she was excited to be home and was looking forward to meeting everyone on the tour.
   “I miss everything about Australia,” she said.
   “I’m really looking forward to travelling around the country and getting back to WA. It will be great having a chat and a laugh with everyone – I love what your great state has to offer.”
   Describing the character of Ruby in her second novel as a bit of a cow and a best friend in a terrible mood, Jessica said she decided to write the sequel as she knew the character had a lot more to offer readers.
   “Originally the idea of Ruby came from when I was living in London with my husband and it was in the middle of the financial crisis,” she said.
   “At the time, a lot of investment bankers were losing their jobs and one of the things I wanted to explore with Ruby was that sense of having lost your job and the depression that comes with that, and also the excitement that can come from the clean canvas.
   “I took her way out of her comfort zone when she lost her job as an investment banker in London. I put her in Australia 
and I put her in politics.
   “In Ruby Blues, two years on, she is struggling at work, her relationship is disintegrating, the Government is doing terribly, and she’s just finding it hard to get that sense of fun and adrenalin back into the game.
   “But even now, I don’t think Ruby is finished yet. I think she has a lot more to do with her life.”
   When asked about what her family thought of her book this time round, considering the sequence of events following Campaign Ruby, Jessica said they were extremely supportive of her writing career but her dad and husband have yet to read the book.
   “My dad hasn’t read it yet, nor has my husband and one of my brothers hasn’t read it yet,” she said.
   “But mum has and she loved it. She was really thrilled and gave me encouragement along the way but I am looking forward to seeing what dad, my husband and my brother think of it.
   “It’s always really interesting when you give your work to the people you love because they are always looking for you in your protagonist, even if subconsciously.
   “My brother said to me last time ‘I can really hear your voice in Ruby’, which kind of frustrated me to be honest because I tried really hard to create believable Brit.”
   Jessica read excerpts from her book Ruby Blues at her book launch at the Joondalup Library last week. 

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