Sally Abbott is a former journalist and a PR Director who lives in Melbourne with her partner. She was the winner of The Richell Prize for Emerging Writers 2015. Closing Down is her first novel.
Rural Australia is both developing and narrowing. The selling out of Australia to foreign interests has resulted in multitudes of country towns closing down and officially ceasing to exist. Centralizing the displaced has become the solution to the increasing shortage of food and resources. Generational land ownership comes to a forced end, and for the residents of the bush communities, the country of their birth is becoming unrecognizable.
Clare is eking out an existence in country Myamba, dependent upon her government rations and the small routines of her domestic life. She hasn't yet joined the walkers, the homeless who drift from town to town, but her night time activities have her crossing paths with their increasing ranks. Clare's husband continues to wallowing in his despair and their rented property will shortly be taken away from them. Clare must think of somewhere to go where she will be safe.
Robbie and Ella's lives are lived in snatches of time between work trips, and their careers increasingly reveal to them the insanity at work behind the facades of government and large corporations. People just don't behave like they used to. Robbie longs to return home but isn't sure that Myamba holds the answers either to the disintegration of kind society that he is witnessing.