Award winning outback romance
Thank you to everyone who has supported Wedding Bells By The Creek and taken it to Number One. Almost as much cause for celebration as the wedding itself.

Australia

I learn a new skill

Meeting this cutie was definitely research. Who knew calves came with such pink noses?

It’s amazing where book research can lead you… and what new skills you can develop along the way.

On my recent trip to Australia, I was in the beautiful Hunter Valley, checking locations, taking photographs and talking to the locals about the lovely place where they live.

And somehow that led to coloured icing, roses and records. Continue reading

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Changing direction

This week I can be found over on the Take Five Authors blog – where I am talking about leaving home, changing direction and new people and places.

It’s all about books of course –

Here’s a hint.

It’s all about this rolled up bit of cardboard on my desk.

Do pop over to the Take Five Authors blog and see what I am up to.

 

 

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It’s publication day.

Wedding Bells by The Creek published by Farwell Publications

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

Today is one of those days that authors love. It’s publication day for Wedding Bells by the Creek – the 5th book in the Coorah Creek Series.

Publication day is the culmination of months of work. It’s not just the writing. Before the first word is even written, I have to spend time thinking about the story and the characters and what the book will be about. When the writing is finished, there’s revision and  editing, working to get the cover just right. Coming up with a blurb and a shout line.

But all that is worthwhile when I look at the final book.  Of course, that’s when the nervousness sets in. Continue reading

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