Award winning outback romance
Excited to announce that Little Girl Lost has won the Epic Romantic Novel of the Year Award. I am thrilled. Thank you to the RNA for this honour.

Janet

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More recent reads

The writing was captivating.

The last couple of months here in London have been cold and wet and grey. My determination to find new authors disappeared with the sun, and it’s been a couple of months of comfort reads for me.

I’ve posted the books in the order I read them – not in any sort of preference…. although the first book is probably my favourite. It is also the one new author in this list… and what an author she is!

Winter Garden – Kristin Hannah (paperback – new author)

Well, when I say new author…. I really mean almost new author. I did read a short story by Kristin Hannah a long time ago and was enchanted by it. I don’t know why it took so long for me to come back to her. But now that I have found her again, I will be back. Continue reading

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An evening to remember

Candles, chandeliers and books -what a fabulous atmosphere.

Last night the Romantic Novelists Association held their Romantic Novel of the Year Awards Ceremony. This is a glittering evening of canapés and bubbles in the wonderful Gladstone Library in Whitehall Place.

It was particularly special for me this year, because my book Little Girl Lost was shortlisted for the Epic Romantic Novel of the year – a category that includes books with a central romance at the heart, but that cover broader issues and themes as well.

To cut a long story short – I WON!!!! Continue reading

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Avec diverse alarums

I got there early to avoid the crowds. Well, it was a good idea

This week for me has been about diversity… and the many different ways we express our individuality.

The reason – books and knitting. To explain.

I was looking forward to the Knitting and Stitching Show at London Olympia – the exhibition space and convention centre in Kensington. It’s huge. I had forgotten just how big it is. It’s the site of the Great British Beer Festival, webmaster John’s birthday treat most years. It’s also the site of this month’s London Book Fair.

There were people everywhere and I noticed two things. A lot of people seemed to have been hurt in some accident. And there were a lot of people wearing black T-shirts and carrying guitars. Then there was the clothing rail with what seemed like a million yards of white tulle and silk emerging from the dress bags. Continue reading

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Plot with dialogue

The blog is on tour this week. You can find me over at the Take Five Authors blog – where I am talking about the way we plot.

At a workshop last weekend, I was fascinated by the idea of using dialogue to plot. For someone who doesn’t like to plot (that’s me) it seems like a great idea – thank you Sophie Weston.

I also talk about some of my favourite movie moments – where dialogue is everything. And there’s a picture of Marlon Brando. Here’s another one – just to get you in the mood… then head over to Take Five Authors.

A Streetcar Named Desire is not my favourite Brando film – but he certainly rocked that T-shirt!

 

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A writing hero

I confess, I had a bit of a fan-girl moment. I love Gaiman’s writing.

You know those moments when you finally get to… not exactly meet but spend time listening to someone you have really admired for a long time. One of two things will happen. Either you’ll be disappointed, or you’ll fall in love.

And isn’t it the best thing in the world when it’s the latter?

This week, I had a major fan-girl moment. I had a front row seat at the Royal Festival Hall to hear the amazing Neil Gaiman talk about his work in general and in particular his latest book – Norse Mythology. This book is a retelling of the classic Norse myths in Gaiman’s own unique voice.

Not only is he a great writer – he is a pretty fabulous reader too.

The evening started with him reading one of the stories from the book. It involved the Mighty Thor and his hammer, Loki , a giant ogre and a wedding. Continue reading

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Reaching for the tissues

This is a book that means a lot to me.

I can finally let you all in on a secret I have been keeping for a little while now….

The Romantic Novelists Association has announced the shortlists for the Romantic Novel of the Year Awards – and my book, Little Girl Lost, is there. Yes – I cried when I heard the news a few weeks ago. And once or twice since then, I have jumped up and down and made squeeee noises – excited, but so frustrated that I had to keep it a secret.

Little Girl Lost is shortlisted for the Epic Romantic Novel of the Year –that’s for a book which has a strong romance at its core, but also deals with wider issues beyond the romance.

Being shortlisted for this award means a lot to me for several reasons. Continue reading

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Discovering New Authors

The first stop on my ‘new authors’ list was a wonderful book – and she has a good sized backlist for me to explore.

I’m not one for New Year’s Resolutions, but I did promise myself that this year I would experiment more with my reading and try some new authors. Not necessarily new as in debut authors – but new to me.

That’s not to say I am abandoning old favourites. Never! But I felt it was time to be a bit more adventurous and move out of my comfort zone. So for the past few weeks I have been grabbing new authors of my huge to-be-read pile.

It’s been a lot of fun… Continue reading

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Squirrels have their special day

Not exactly a common site in outback Australia.

Did you know that January 21st was/is World Squirrel Appreciation Day? I certainly didn’t.

I grew up in a country that doesn’t have squirrels. When I say that, it startles many of my UK friends. Squirrels here are so commonplace. They have adapted well to an urban environment. And of course are all over the countryside.

When I first came to the UK, and met my first squirrel, I was delighted. I still smile every time I see one. Why? Continue reading

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The perfect man…

I have gone visiting this weekend over on the Take Five Authors blog – where I am talking about making a perfect man..

Do we really want a perfect hero – or are his imperfections what make us really love him?

Pop over to Take Five Authors for more…..

Here’s a hint at the type of imperfect hero I am talking about.

 

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Reading between the frames

If you haven’t seen this – it really is worth a look.

I read a film last night.

I know what you are thinking – and yes, I watched it too. In fact I did both. At the same time.  And it was quite an eye opener.

The film was A Few Good Men – which of course features an absolutely brilliant performance by Jack Nicholson. A fine Keifer Sutherland performance too. Not to mention Kevin Bacon. And a young Tom Cruise doesn’t do too badly either.

The reason I watched it was none of the above – it was all about the writing. Continue reading

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Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence Finalist for The Wild OneColorado Romance Writers Award of Excellence Finalist for The Wild One
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