My Inspiration in Writing Heartsong (What The Heart Calls Series)

Inspirations in writing a novel come from different places. Well, of course, for myself, my imaginations set off whenever I read a new book or watched a movie or had a funny experience that is worth sharing.

The second book that I will publish, which is a part of a series, is very close to my heart. This is, I must say, I have fully invested my emotions.

A few months ago, as I was browsing Netflix for new series to watch, and I stumbled upon a period drama “When Calls the Heart.” At first, I was hesitant to give it a go, but I’ve already finished watching “The Crown” and “Victoria“, so why not? I watched the first episode and immediately recognised the lead actress Erin Krakow, who I’ve seen in one of the Hallmark Channels movies. But who is this guy (I’m referring to the lead actor of the series)? Then I found out that he, Daniel Lissing, is an Aussie actor. I squealed in excitement like I felt we have a connection somehow. I instantly reckoned that he must have been part of a long-running Aussie soap opera Home & Away. That show is like a passport of all aspiring youths to make it to Hollywood – Chris Hemsworth, Isla Fisher, Heath Ledger, Ryan Kwanten and many others. If Keith Urban is an actor, he would probably have appeared on that show too. And yeah – he appeared as a guest on that show.

I’ve never watched Home & Away (sorry!). I’m more like an MKR (My Kitchen Rules) and Masterchef kind of gal.

So, I continued on watching the first season of “When Calls the Heart.” I was instantly hooked with the story of Elizabeth Thatcher and Jack Thornton. The set was amazing. The costumes and the backdrop were on point. It brought the same feels of warmth and calmness that most of the Hallmark movies are presenting.

When Calls the Heart” was adapted by Michael Landon Jr. from Janette Oke‘s first book of her Canadian West series in a 2-hour TV movie, starring Maggie Grace as a niece, also named Elizabeth Thatcher, who wants to follow in her aunt’s footsteps as a teacher out west and Stephen Amell as North West Mounted Police officer Wynn Delaney. That Elizabeth Thatcher character became the lead in the later adapted TV series of When Calls the Heart – not the original Elizabeth Thatcher. Janette Oke was so inspired by this character that Michael Landon Jr. had created and so she and her daughter wrote the Return to The Canadian West series based on her – which is truly amazing! Janette Oke inspired Michael Landon Jr. and he inspired her!

My addiction to the show grew and I was watching it pretty much everywhere – while doing my morning indoor cycling, waiting for a bus (bus timing in Sydney is crap), while I’m in a bus, when I’m not in a bus. Anyway, my point is – I yanked my way to finishing the four seasons on Netflix. I was already panicking when I realised that season 5 is not on it.

So, I did a lot of searching and reading what will happen to Elizabeth and Jack story, specifically in Season 5. YouTube mostly. And then I saw all the interviews of both stars Erin Krakow and Daniel Lissing. There was a YouTube playlist that I kept playing over and over again. Their chemistry was enthralling. You can see it on how they looked at each other – that if there was nothing going on between them, they should’ve won an Oscar for being such great actors.

They really look good together. And my fascination for the show has diverted to the two leads and I started to become this crazy stalking fan. I followed their Instagram. I read all their tweets on Twitter. I talked about them all the time like they are my old friends I know. I became an Erin-Daniel shipper. I have typed a hundred times in the comment sections that “they should be together.” I even bought the idea that they are going to get married when someone did a video about it and upload on YouTube.

Then, they killed Daniel Lissing’s character Jack Thornton in the story.

I died.

I cried. I’m not sure if there were real tears, but I’m sure I was devastated. I was heartbroken. I don’t know how I was going to recover. I have so many questions – I thought they like each other, I thought the show was doing very well. I started to make up things of some behind the scenes inside my head on what had happened. And then I had a light-bulb moment – I can write about this.

And that’s how ‘Heartsong‘ come about.

I’m really excited about sharing this book with everyone. I feel so much relief that I was able to burst out the emotions I was carrying and created my own happy ending. This, however, has stopped me to continue on watching the series (because I have a book to write). Or maybe I will, once it gets available on Netflix. Maybe they will kill the guy again… and I will have a book to write again!

That’s it for me. I poured everything out and I can’t wait for everyone to read it.