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Kaneana May, Author of The One, Tells Us About the Road to Publication

July 25, 2019

About the author:

Kaneana May studied television production at university, graduating with first-class honours in screenwriting. She went on to work in television, including roles as a script assistant on All Saints, a storyliner on Headland and a scriptwriter on Home and Away. Since becoming a mother, Kaneana has turned her attention to fiction writing. Kaneana loves to read—mostly YA, romance and women’s fiction—and also loves watching TV and films. Writing, boot camp, coffee, chocolate and champagne are just some of her favourite things. Kaneana lives on the Mid North Coast of New South Wales with her husband and three children.For more about Kaneana, check out www.kaneanamay.com or join her over on Facebook or Instagram where you’ll see her sharing loads of her life, loves, and writing.

Buy a copy of The One here. // Read our review of The One here.

Words by Author:

I’ve been working on this dream of being published for at least the last fifteen years. The One isn’t the first book I’ve worked on, but it combines my love of television with my love for small-town living, so it seems fitting that it was ‘the one’ to finally land me a publishing deal.

I was first wowed by the behind-the-scenes magic of television when I was only ten years old and went to visit my cousin, who was a make-up artist on the drama program E-Street. Something inside me sparked that day at seeing actors transform into characters, along with seeing all the crew members working together to make the production come to life.

My love and admiration continued, and I went on to study television production at university. I learnt about all areas of production—audio, lighting, camera, editing, producing and directing—but fell in love with screenwriting. After uni, I was lucky enough to score myself jobs in the script departments of different drama programs, including Home and Away. I’ve always had a great appreciation for how many people are involved in making a television production come to life.

When my husband and I decided to raise a family, we returned to the same small hometown that I’d grown up in. I value the feeling of living in a close-knit community where we have gates into our next-door neighbours’ yards, grandparents around the corner and the fact that you can’t go to the supermarket without running into someone you know…or even ten people you know.

While reality television doesn’t appeal to everyone, it has had huge success and continues to gain good ratings. In the past, I’ve been a fan of shows such as Survivor, Big Brother and The Bachelor. Like many around the world, I’ve gotten together with friends from my hometown to have Bachelor parties, where we watch premiers, hometown dates and finales. Conversations with friends at such parties made me realise that most people just accept the drama they see on screen, but for me, it’s become second nature to consider what else is going on behind the scenes to evoke and highlight the drama that we’re shown.

I started thinking about what it might be like to work on a reality television dating show and soon the character of Darcy Reed, a young field producer eager for a promotion, formed in my mind. I settled on my fictionalised version of a Bachelor meets Big Brother reality dating show, which I titled The One. I wanted to explore the moral dilemmas that Darcy is faced with as she works on a show like this and show how much pressure she’s under to create easily consumed television.

The One centres around three women: Darcy, the producer; Bonnie, the unlikely contestant; and Penelope, the occasional viewer. All of them have a connection to small-town living but have varying emotions about it. I explore the push-pull of country versus city living, which I have felt myself in the past to do with family versus career.

I hope readers enjoy my novel, The One.


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