Saturday, March 31, 2012
Wednesday, March 28, 2012
Over to you Fiona...
Until Jacqueline Havelock, a young psychologist escaping her own issues, arrives fresh from the city and makes Damien question everything he has known about himself…also igniting a spark in his lonely heart.
Soon Damien is daring to ask for more than an ordinary life, and can glimpse the possibility of happiness. Will this accidental farmer dare to fulfil the long-forgotten legacy of his father and find peace in the arms of the doctor?
Or will the ghosts of their pasts threaten the fragile new lives they've just begun to build?
Tuesday, March 27, 2012
I had the VERY HUGE honour of reading this book BEFORE it was published and I just fell in love with it. I was not at all surprised when the clever Charlotte Herscher (who also happens to be my Carina Press editor - see, did I not tell you she was clever?) snapped Fiona's BOOMERANG BRIDE up. Since it was published by Carina Press last August, this book has gone Direct-to-consumer in the US and now this... the first CARINA book to be nominated for the prestigious RITA Awards.
I am just so thrilled for Fiona, Charlotte and Carina and I hope if you haven't yet read this book, you do so soon. It's such a gorgeous story!!! I WISH you the best with the final round Fiona. xo
Saturday, March 24, 2012
I'm sure you've all seen my new cover as I've been flashing around the beautiful JILTED (Mira Australia, June) cover on Twitter, Facebook and Goodreads, but just in case you've some how missed out, I thought I'd share it again here. This time the whole book jacket - blurb and all. I'm guessing my next AMAZING moment will be getting my author copies and I can't wait!
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Fresh off the boat, American inventor Jed Reeve is intrigued by Esme's proposal, but even more interested in the beauty herself. Amused that she takes him for a man who lives by his wits, he accepts the job—made easier by the fact that he already shares her ideals. Soon, he finds himself caught up in political intrigue, kidnapping and blackmail, and trying to convince his employer he's more than just a scoundrel...
Sunday, March 18, 2012
The last book before Jaye Ford's SCARED YET, that is. I started this book Saturday morning and finished it in the early hours of the morning today!! Let me just explain, that I'm not the fastest of readers at the moment, because most of my free time is spent writing, so I maybe read one book a week.
I read Jaye's debut BEYOND FEAR last year and loved it, so have been looking forward to this book for a while. I was NOT disappointed.
This is the story of a Livia, a capable business woman and mum who's going through some pretty rough stuff in her personal life - marriage break-down, father dying. If that's not horrid enough, she'd beaten up by a thug and then the stalking starts. Threatening, scary notes and worse, bad things happening to people whom she loves. Jaye cleverly sets the scene so that after a couple of days of this happening, Liv has NO IDEA who to turn to.
There's a hook at the end of each chap that keeps you turning the pages as you wonder if the stalker is Liv's best friend, her best friend's husband, her new friend and supposed protector, someone in her office building or her ex. EVERYONE seems capable and suspicious on more than one occasion.
Liv is a gutsy heroine, who's hard not to barrack for. You want her to win and get her happily ever after - yes, there's that thread of romance that I like in ALL my books! However, despite knowing she's gotta survive in the end, it's touch-and-go till the very end, with one surprise after another.
I truly enjoyed this Thriller by another fabulous Aussie writer and I can't wait to see what Jaye Ford writes next.
I'm curious - what book have you read lately that was un-put-down-able?!!?
Friday, March 16, 2012
Now... my GOOD (no fabulous) news is that I've sold another book to Carina Press. HOLLYWOOD HEARTBREAK (which will probably get a brand new title soon) will be an early 2013 release and I'm ecstatic about it.
I LOVE this book (probably cos it's now finished, sold and only with edits to go) and I'm so excited that actual people (hopefully YOU) are going to be able to read it. This book also happened to be my entry into the 2010 Mills & Boon New Voices contest, in which my good friend Leah Ashton WON!!! I got some great feedback on this chap (which was then titled ONE ROGUE, ONE DAMSEL) and a special endorsement by Heidi Rice on her blog when she mentioned it as one of her favourite entries. THAT made not winning a lot sweeter, as does the fact I'm now sold this book to Carina Press who have been very good to me and very professional to work with so far.
HOLLYWOOD HEARTBREAKis about Holly McCartney, an Australian cultural anthropologist who steps out of her comfort zone to head to Hollywood when her sister is nominated for a post-humus Academy Award. There was no love lost between the sisters and when Holly is terrorized by the paparazzi and her sister’s best friend (an ex paparazzo) rescues her there’s no love lost there either. But there is attraction...
My editor, the brilliant Charlotte Herscher said about this book - I love the Hollywood setting, all the glitz and the glam and how Holly is a fish out of water in L.A. In contrast, the romance is down to earth, warm and sexy, and hits just the right note.
I'm really looking forward to revisiting this story in the edits, getting exact release dates, reading the blurb and of course seeing what the Carina Press team comes up with for a cover.
Thanks for letting me share my good news... anyone else got some they'd like to share.
Wednesday, March 14, 2012
First, thanks to Rach for having me here on her Theory on Thursday!
If you’ve written a story or even looked into doing so, one of the major parts of a story you’re trying to grasp is GMC. No, not the car company, but the Goals, Motivations and Conflicts of a story.
The goals are what the hero or heroine want to achieve in the story. But, we must ask, WHY do they want to achieve this goal? What is their MOTIVATION for pursuing it?
Motivation can be hard and you need to dig into your character’s background and soul to find the answer. One of the tools I use is a theory I learned in nursing school.
Abraham Maslow theorized that what a person needs follows different levels – or hierarchies – and we pursue each level in order.
Level One Basic Needs --- Food, water, shelter
Level Two Safety – Knowing there’s no danger in life
Level Three – Love and Acceptance
I think most romances will deal with level three because only with true love can you move to the other two levels.
But how do you determine a character’s motivation? Take the heroine who wants to win the top spot in a competition. Why is winning so important to her?
Because she wants the prestige. Because she wants the acceptance of her family. A writer could immediately move to the third level of Maslow’s hierarchy.
But what if that wasn’t the real reason? Maybe there was something more pressing n her mind. Level One, Basic Needs. What if she needs the prize money? What if she loses then she loses everything she has: her home, her business. And if she loses those, she could potentially lose the next two levels.
If you’re stuck with motivation for your characters, I’d recommend a good look at Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. It will provide you with a wealth of insight into your character.
Tuesday, March 13, 2012
- There's an interview at fab online magazine Beauty and Lace where you can learn what being a woman means to me!
- And there's also a bit of a spiel at Romance Book Haven about my journey to the publication of One Perfect Night.
Saturday, March 10, 2012
Romance – Rural To Urban & Everything In Between
Read Hard, Write Hard, Love Hard!
Rural or Urban, There’s Always Romance
Romance Makes The Read Worthwhile
Romance – Red Dust to Big Smoke
Sex in the City, Love on the Land
Small towns, big cities, larger than life romance!
Contemporary Romance from the City to the Sticks
Rural Romance Meets Urban Passion
Romantic Women’s Fiction
Small-town Sizzle, Big-city Passion
Friday, March 9, 2012
In the last week and a bit, I've read Putting Alice Back Togther by Carol Marinelli and Bella's Run by Margareta Osborn. Two very different books but I found both very easy to read and they kept me turning the pages well into the night. A testament to this fact is that I've read them both is just over a week, when I've barely been fitting in ANY reading lately.
Putting Alice Back Together has a premise I haven't read in a women's fiction book before - the heroine had a secret baby in her teens and has been hiding this for a decade. She relates to those stories on the TV about teenage girls who pop a baby out on the toilet and didn't even know they were pregnant! Now, although Carol is a Mills & Boon writer and although I'm a fan of these novels, this isn't your traditional category secret baby hook. Alice is an emotionally disturbed but lovable heroine - she's addicted to valium and alcohol and yet is trying to pretend that everything is fine and dandy in her world. One can see how her circumstances have led her to the place she is today and how she has a lot to deal with to move on and have a normal life.
All of the characters (Alice's friends, family and love interests) are fully fledged people, who are realistic and yet entertaining. This is not a romance but for those of us who love the genre, there's enough of a romance thread to interest. And although whether Alice gets her man in the end is left up in the air, for those of us who want to believe she does, we can :) The only thing that didn't really work for me was the flashing back and forth between the present and the past in the beginning but maybe that's just cos I'm easily confused. And by half way through the book, I was used to this technique and didn't really mind it.
As far as women's fiction goes, this is unique and hard to put in a certain box so I won't even try. Just read it!
Hot on the heels of Alice, I read Bella's Run, which I can easily classify - it's a rip-roaring tale of rural romance, although I've seen the author call it a saga :) The romance is the main plot, which is too me a positive. And I loved the hero Will from day dot.
The story begins with Bella and her best friend Patty on their ''trip of a life time'' working and travelling the Aussie outback. Margareta paints their friendship beautifully and therefore it is gut-wrenching when tragedy tears them apart. All the characters are lively and their dialogue helps classify them as very rural or country - some may feel this is stereotyped but I was enjoying the story so much I didn't really mind. As well as the characters, Margareta has a way with words that brings the rural mountain setting alive. There's not a whole load of farming jargon, which I look upon as a positive. Margareta has just enough farming detail to make the book's ruralness authentic but doesn't bang the reader over the head with extraneous farming scenes. Bella's Run made me realise its'the FEEL of a book that makes it rural, not necessarily the content. And I think that FEEL is something all Aussies - whether city or country dwellers - will enjoy in this book :)
If I had one critical thing to say about this book it is that I would have liked to see more of what happened in the years the hero and heroine were apart, but then again, Bella's Run sits at almost 400 pages, so perhaps that's asking too much!
As you can see, I've been very happy with the books I've been reading lately. I'm currently reading a Rachel Gibson book, but I'll be back to my Aussie books soon - looking forward to Jaye Ford's SCARED YET and Amy Andrews INNOCENT 'TIL PROVEN OTHERWISE :)
Wednesday, March 7, 2012
Thanks Nas - please bombard Nas with any further questions while she's here.
And I'd also love to hear from any authors who have used a service like Nas' - how did it work for you?