Reaching for a dream

Published on SBLT Kat Mulheron (author), ABIS James McDougall (photographer)

Leading Seaman Boatswains Mate Shaun Murphy proof reads his manuscript at the Boatswains Faculty, HMAS Cerberus, Victoria. (photo: ABIS James McDougall)
Leading Seaman Boatswains Mate Shaun Murphy proof reads his manuscript at the Boatswains Faculty, HMAS Cerberus, Victoria.

How do you make a 16 year fantasy come true? Leading Seaman Boatswains Mate Shaun Murphy hopes he can with the support of his Navy colleagues, friends, family and the public.

Leading Seaman Murphy has had a story floating inside his head for a very long time and like many of us, he thought it was just a ‘project’ to be tinkered with when he had time outside his day job with Navy. He is now trying to raise funds to publish his first novel, one in the fantasy-genre.

When his father passed away from cancer in 2013, he decided to honour his father’s memory by making his own dream a reality.

“My story is set on a planet called Rapturia. It has a race of Demi-Gods who ensure peace and protect the many races living on Rapturia. There’s lies and betrayal, greed, vengeance and a fight for power,” Leading Seaman Murphy said.

“It’s an exciting story, a lot like Lord of the Rings. I know it’s fantasy, but where ever it’s set, it gives us lessons on what’s right and wrong; making hard choices, doing the right thing to protect those that can’t protect themselves.

"If you think about it, that’s what we do in Navy and Defence, we work hard to do the right thing and protect those who need it,” he said.

Leading Seaman Murphy spent three of his five years in Navy serving as part of Operation RESOLUTE before returning to his homeport at HMAS Cerberus, in Victoria, to spend time with his father while he battled cancer. He’s spent that time reflecting on family, his career and the importance of giving and receiving support. 

Independent appraisers assessed the novel and interest from a publisher has projected a release date of 2016 if he can raise much needed funds. Using the site ‘Kickstarter’, artists, musicians, writers etc can promote their idea and anyone interested in supporting it can make a pledge to support, effectively helping to bring the project to life. Leading Seaman Murphy is also offering supporters a signed copy of the book among other unique opportunities if the support helps to get 'Rapturia' published.

“I hope reaching my pledge goal will allow me to help others like myself who are reaching for their dreams. If the novel is successful I’d like to donate part of the profits to the Australian Cancer Research Foundation and SIDS and Kids. Both of those charities have supported my family and being able to give something significant back would mean a lot,” he said.

For more information about Leading Seaman Murphy’s story, or to make a pledge and help ‘Rapturia’ come to life, visit http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1891031507/rapturia.

Additional imagery is available at: http://images.navy.gov.au/S20143853.