Award winning outback romance
There's going to be a wedding in Coorah Creek - and you are invited. Wedding Bells By The Creek, the 5th book in the series, is now available to pre-order.

Australia

You are invited to a wedding

I think the cover perfectly captures the feel of the book.

At last I can show you the cover of the new Coorah Creek book…

Isn’t it just beautiful?

This novella features all your old favourites in Coorah Creek. Trish and Syd are there. You’ll get to spend more time with Max and Tia who you met in Little Girl Lost.

There’s a new face in the town – and someone who has been gone for a long time has come back. That’s not good news for everyone. 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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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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Balloons, berths and butterflies

The cover of my antique Verne. That's a travel problem I've never had.

The cover of my antique Verne. That’s a travel problem I’ve never had.

This week, I travelled half way around the planet in 22 hours. Well – 22 hours in the air plus quite a few more hours hanging around airports. But when you say 22 hours, it seems so impressive. Move over Jules Verne and your 80 days. Verne wrote a lot about travel in exotic places, and I do like an adventure story.

Travel has always been tough – but there’s tough then and tough now…

Which brings me inexorably to butterflies. But first… Continue reading

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Driving in the Outback

You don't have a lot of options on outback roads.

You don’t have a lot of options on outback roads.

When I first came to live in England, one of the things that amazed me was all the conversation about roads – or more precisely routes.

I’d listen to people saying – ‘The M3 was jammed so I exited at the A30 and came via the B389…..’

This doesn’t happen in the outback of Australia.

We don’t give all our roads numbers in the same way. But more importantly, a lot of the time there is only one road that leads from A to B. In the towns, of course, there are options, but where I learned to drive there was only ever one road that went where I wanted to go, and it was flat and pretty much straight, owning to a lack of rivers and hills. And as often as not, it was a dirt road as well. Continue reading

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Looking into my own past

Hollowed out tree truck make great water troughs - and they are free. I'll bet there are many still in use today.

Hollowed out tree trucks make great water troughs – and they are free. I’ll bet there are many still in use today.

 

When I travel I love going to museums – but recently I found myself going to a museum near my old home town in Queensland. It was like looking back into my own past.

The thing about remote and rural communities is that they don’t change quickly.

Whether it’s Australia, or the UK or anywhere else in the world, rural communities tend to be pretty self-sufficient. They have to be. Even in the 21st century, someone in a remote community can’t just drive up the road to buy a new… whatever.

And of course, farming communities survive at the whim of the weather and the economy – so as often as not, even if a new ‘whatever’ is available, it’s too expensive. Continue reading

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The PM and the painting

I met an old friend at London’s Royal Academy the other day … a friend who caused a million dollar controversy in Australia when I was still at school. I remember it so well.

The ‘friend’ I am referring to is Jackson Pollock’s iconic painting – Blue Poles. Painted in 1952, it was purchased by the National Gallery of Australia in 1973 for the sum of one point three million dollars. At the time that was a world record sum for a painting by a contemporary artist.

Blue Poles (photo from Wikipedia)

Blue Poles (photo from Wikipedia). No photo could ever do it justice. It is teeming with life and energy.

The director of the National Gallery was unable to spend more than £1,000,000 – so approval for the purchase was given by the then Prime Minister Gough Whitlam. And what a fuss that caused. Continue reading

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The ‘one day’ house

We all have them – the ‘one day’ house. Go on… confess. I bet you have one too.

‘One day – when I win the lottery….’ or ‘One day when I am fabulously rich…’

It’s otherwise known as the dream house. I think I started designing the house of my dreams when I was about eleven or twelve. Living in Queensland where it’s hot, and being a bit of a history nut, my dream house was always going to be a lovely colonial building – with wide verandas, and high ceilings, and stables and lawns and….

I found it recently. Someone else had built it for me.

homestead Continue reading

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International Authordom

Authordom could describe authors, agents and editors from all over the world discussing the state of publishing.

Authordom could describe authors, agents and editors from all over the world discussing the state of publishing.

Ok –authordom isn’t a real word, but bear with me. I think it should be.

According to the Oxford dictionary, dom is a suffix which denotes a state or condition (freedom); rank or status (earldom); a domain (kingdom) or a class of people (officialdom).

That’s us – isn’t it? Continue reading

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Romance by the sea

The view from my balcony at the hotel

The view from my balcony at the hotel

A balcony, a sunset, a sea view and a glass of wine – no, not a romantic weekend away (I wish) – it was the 25th Annual Romance Writers of Australia conference. This had the theme Ain’t Love Grand, and was held in the lovely city of Adelaide.

This is the second time I have travelled down under for this conference… and what a great time I’ve had both times. These are my tribe – like minded readers and writers, most of whom have the same accent I have.

There were some great speakers (I will share some of that with you in the next week or two when I recover) … some fun social events… and many books, of course. 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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