• Launch Pad Writers Club

Historical Fiction from Middle Kinglake Primary School

If you are well versed in the rich history of the Kinglake Ranges, you might recognise some of the characters in Middle Kinglake Primary’s fourth Launch Pad book, featuring 20 short historical fiction pieces by MKPS students. Students worked with local historical fiction author Rob Verhagen (author of “Murder at the Mountain Rush”), and Launch Pad Writers Club host Ander Louis, to create their own works of historical fiction based in the Kinglake Ranges.

Students and Launch Pad Hosts created a historical timeline of Kinglake, and later chose where (when) along that timeline they would like to set their story. By reading the stories in their anthology, you can get a glimpse into many different eras of Kinglake's history - and future!


They learned a lot about the importance of a story’s “setting” – the time and place in which a story takes place – and had fun researching Kinglake’s interesting past. Local Historian Deidre Hawkins presented information to the students and they also used her publication of Kinglake’s history to help with their research.


Many characters are based on the pioneers of Kinglake from the mid 1800-1900s. Many students have added a comical element to their stories, some a sci-fi take, while others imagined a day in the life of their character. This has resulted in a diverse range of stories and exciting narratives drawing on their own imagination as well as times when Kinglake had no roads, just horse and carts for transport; farmers grew potatoes and berries; local mailmen set up post offices in their homes; and many people sought their fortune in the goldfields near Kinglake.

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