INSPIREd by a Historical Home: WA inspires the latest must read novel

INSPIREd by a Historical Home: WA inspires the latest must read novel

Arts & Culture Places

A historic home in Guildford is the inspiration behind Sasha Wasley’s latest novel.

In 2020, author Sasha Wasley was one of the first Western Australian writers to take part in the INSPIRE: Writers in Residency program.

The residency offers opportunities for research, creative and professional development, encourages excellence in writing and nurtures connections to publishers. Funded by the Western Australian State Government and facilitated by the National Trust of Western Australia, the goal of the residency is to provide a unique and inspiring space for writers to explore ideas and produce work with a local focus – generating new Western Australian stories, as well as bringing new interpretation and engagement to the history of the location through rich cultural immersion.

For the first two weeks of her residency, Sasha was based at Peninsula Farm in Maylands – the site of one of the very first farms in the Swan River Colony.

“On my first day, my laptop never even made it out of the case!” Sasha, remembered, “I became engrossed in the archival documents and books from the staff bookshelf at Peninsula Farm, studying letters, farm diaries, recounts and photos, making notes and having ideas.”

After much research, Sasha moved on to the majestic Woodbridge House in Guildford. Built in the 1880s, Woodbridge House is central to the story of the area and quickly became the inspiration for Sasha’s new book.

Overlooking the beautiful Derbarl Yerrigan (Swan River), the history of the home – in particular the story of the young Wilfred and Gresley Harper, both lost on the same day in the Battle of the Nek at Gallipoli in WWI – Sasha began to write.

“Snapshots from Home” is set in 1917 and centres upon a young Guildford woman, Edie, who takes up a teaching position in York. To distract herself from mourning the death of her brother on the Front, and to waylay her father’s plans to make her a respectable marriage, Edie takes part in a project – sending photos of home to the troops.

What ensues is a fascinating story of scandals, secrets and class complexities.

“Snapshots from Home” will be officially launched at the source of inspiration, at Woodbridge House on 8th July 2023 from 10:00 until 12:30pm.

All are welcome to attend and enjoy a Devonshire tea on the verandah at historical Woodbridge House, followed by an author talk. Sasha will be in conversation with Tess Woods about the book and copies will be available for purchase and signing, thanks to Dymocks Midland.

Guests are then welcome to take a guided tour of the beautiful Woodbridge House.

Tickets are available via the National Trust WA website: Snapshots From Home Book Launch at Woodbridge – National Trust

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