Friday, 30 September 2016

54. News and Reviews

Normally I’d share my news at the end, but this time it’s only fitting that it starts here.

If you’ve read my blurb on the blog page, you’d know that I am a Queensland girl born and bred. I’ve spent time in Far North Queensland living in Cairns where I worked in a photography lab processing some very interesting holiday snaps. After working on South Molle Island on the Great Barrier Reef for a few months I developed the most amazing tan, which I’ll be paying for in my later years considering what a pale bunny I am now. Travelling further south into Rum country I worked in a pub in Bundaberg. (If only I’d known about the Bundaberg Writers Group and their amazing WRITE FEST back then.)  I also spent a few months in Brisbane when my youngest decided she’d arrive nine weeks early, although to be fair, I spent most of that time in the hospital. But no matter where I travelled or for how long I stayed, I always found my way back to my home town in Central Queensland.  Well that, dear readers, is about to change.

In a few weeks we will be relocating to Western Australia, a place I haven’t set foot in since my honeymoon (quite some time ago.) While I’m looking forward to this brand new adventure, it’s with very mixed emotions that I share this. Most of my family and friends are here and even though I know they’re only a phone call or message away, not being able to see them when I want will be a huge adjustment.  Perhaps I should apologise now for forgetting the two-hour time difference and calling later than is deemed polite. (Although I’m sure I’ll be paid back with some very early calls in return.) However, I’ve longed to travel back to the west coast for many years and it’s so wonderful to have the opportunity to do so. Granted I was thinking holiday, not life changing experience, but there you go. One never knows what life is going to throw their way. J

I’m sure there’ll be a few reminders of home. I won’t be escaping the interesting wildlife for which Australia is so widely known. There’ll still be snakes slithering in the backyard and a variety of critters trying to cohabit in the house that I’m as determined to ignore there as I do here. The beautiful singing of magpies will still greet me throughout the day and I’m sure they’re just as friendly in the nesting season in Western Australia as they are here. We’ll also have the bonus of a child old enough to drive so we can tour the wineries as we once did on our honeymoon. Responsibly, of course. ;) LOL

I’m also looking forward to showing the kids Kings Park in Perth and all the beautiful wildflowers that I’m hoping are still flowering when we get there. As for hubby, he is finally going home. The only true Western Australian of our family will be showing us the places of his childhood, we’ll be catching up with his family friends, some of which we’ve only spoken to on the phone, and for the first time ever, (for the Queenslanders, that is) we’ll be watching the sun set over the Indian Ocean rather than watching it rise over the Pacific.

So there’s the reason for my tardiness. I’ve been busy cleaning, packing, decluttering and quietly panicking that I won’t have everything done before D-Day. Unfortunately, this means I haven’t spent anywhere near the amount of writing time that I should and while I’ve done my best to get reading time in as well, I’ve had to tone that back too. Once we’re settled, I’ll be back into the writing because there’s the added bonus of some amazing writers’ groups in Western Australia whose reputations have preceded them. And there’s a very good chance I’ll be meeting some of the amazing writers who’ve shared such wonderful stories and their time with me since I began my blog. While that won’t quite make up for the loved ones I am leaving behind, that part of our grand new adventure is definitely something I can embrace.

I also promised you another author newsletter example. This is from Ms Ariana Hawkes.

I just wanted to reach out, say hello and welcome you to my newsletter!
A quick reminder first - you signed up to my mailing list for a chance to win an Amazon Echo.

Claim your welcome gift

I’ve got a little welcome gift for you - a free copy of my book, Once Bitten Twice Smitten. It's a BBW werewolf shifter ménage story, a 4.6-rated comedy romance, featuring one kickass roller derby chick, two scorching-hot alphas, and the naughty nip that changed their lives forever.
Click on the link below or on the picture to claim your freebie of my book. It spent a few weeks in the top of the charts when it was first released! I hope you'll enjoy it!

What you need to know

You can expect me to get in touch a couple of times a month - no spam, just updates about new releases, giveaways, special promotions and other treats.
Please add my email to your address book to ensure that you'll always receive my messages.
The next time you'll hear from me will be this Friday, when I'll announce my new book.
In the meantime, be well!

Ariana Hawkes
USA Today Bestselling Author
Paranormal romance

I can think of a few people who’d love this story. J

It’s incredibly exciting to be asked to critique another author’s stories. I’m flattered and humbled that they seek my feedback and I hope that in some small way I am helping these already amazing writers meet their goals. It’s a huge plus that I can read awesome stories and disappear into the author’s creations. The downside – I can’t share some of my reviews as the stories haven’t been released yet or are still being polished to perfection. So while I’ll have more reviews next month (two of the stories will be released in the coming weeks), these stories are published and I can share the writing love. J

Hen Party 1 is the debt novel by Ms Ashlyn Brady.
Secrets are never meant to be revealed…

Unlucky in love, Kyra Jamieson, is stuck in a rut. Her career in Sales is stalled and she’s all but given up looking for Mr. Right. As chief bridesmaid, she must put aside her failings, overcome her envy, and ensure her best friend, Elin’s hen party goes off without a hitch.

It should be a happy celebration if the crazy girlfriends don’t play tricks on her. And the racy entertainment doesn’t get out of hand. Who knew a gorgeous mystery man was going to invite himself to the girls’ night out?

CEO, Jovanni Tisci has a shocking agenda—to stop Elin’s wedding from going ahead without losing smart and beautiful Kyra, the woman he desires.

One kiss from seductive Jovanni and Kyra is caught in his sexy trap. Whether she gives away his secrets or not, there'll be consequences...for everyone.

This was something different. The crazy girlfriends are a very liberated, confident group of hockey players who play as hard off the fields as they do on them so it was great to read something that wasn’t clichéd. However, Kyra, chief bridesmaid and long-time friend of the bride to be, is the opposite. When the stripper arrives to help the hen celebrate, Kyra means well. She doesn’t want Elin doing anything she might regret before saying her wedding vows, but the rest of Elin’s hockey team and the mysterious man who can’t seem to take his eyes off Kyra have very different ideas.

To tease the reader a little more, this story is written in the serial format – just enough story to leave the reader wanting the next one (which fortunately will be released soon.)  There’s many twists and turns in this story, some which surprised me and some that were the logical choice. And of course I want to know what happens next especially once Kyra discovers why Jovanni is really crashing the hen’s party. Ms Brady has generously provided details of where to find her and her books. J
Blog Site
Google Plus


Hen Party 1 (The First Novella) book link,

Hen Party 2 (The Second Novella)
The party continues in the second novella, and it’s getting hotter. book link,

I Don’t Date in December: The Modern Day Fairy Tale Series – Book 1 is the debut novella by Ms Darcy Delany.

Successful Sydney-based consultant Blaise Lee is on the cusp of securing a partnership and a coveted office with harbour views. But it comes at a price. 
It means she can’t date in December. Any time she tries, work interferes and men drift away like the memory of a bad Christmas present. 

When Blaise is sent on a last minute business trip to Cairns in December, she meets Jonty Lucca. Tall, dark hair, rippling muscles and a smattering of stubble, Jonty is the sort of man she’d date in a heartbeat—if it wasn’t December. 

Army Captain Jonty Lucca has just secured a dream job with the Australian SAS. His itinerant army lifestyle has played havoc with his relationships before, so he’s not looking for a girlfriend before he posts out to Perth. 

But when he meets Blaise he falls under the spell of L'incantesimo. The enchantment. And he’s not about to let Blaise walk out of his life, regardless of her rule about not dating in December. 

Oh this was a fun read. Blaise is full of sass. At times she seems almost too perfect, but I feel it was more that her confidence shone through. You have to be a strong person to achieve your goals and push yourself forward especially when romance is usually sacrificed on the way. A chance meeting changes all that. A pity then that both Blaise and the equally cheeky Jonty are determined to focus on their careers rather than any dalliances. Fortunately, December, Cairns, and some hot summer nights have a different idea.

I loved the banter between these characters – fun fresh and flirty, so unlike the people they needed to be in their chosen careers. Looking forward to the next in the series. J  You can find more about Ms Delany here.
Next month will be more reviews and hopefully I’ll have squeezed in a little more writing. My mind is already whirling with thoughts of an ‘East meets West’ type blog and I’m sure Western Australia will have just as much to offer inspiration-wise as my beloved Queensland.

Until next time, may all your stories have happy endings. J


  1. Woohoo! The West is lovely - and we can definitely keep you supplied with snakes ;)

    I'm looking forward to your East Meets West blog - so much!

    Great book finds, too! I love stories with strong groups of friends - and fairytales. I've loved fairytale retellings ever since Robin McKinley's "Beauty".

    1. The snakes I can stand. I just don't want to see the spiders. lol

      Hopefully I'll do that East meets West blog justice and I've been blessed in my reading choices of late - and I know you'll have a new one for me to read soon too. Happy days. :)

  2. Hello D.D,

    Thank you for writing a review of Hen Party 1. The twists and turns in the story were a lot of fun to write. Best wishes for a safe trip across Australia. East meets West blog is an interesting idea! West Australians used to be called sand gropers, and Queenslanders were banana benders. It's a grand new adventure! xx Ashlyn

    1. You're very welcome. :) I'm pleased you enjoyed writing it as the fun shows through your story. :)

      LOL I like the sound of banana benders rather than cane toads. Yes, a brand new adventure awaits. :)