My third rural romance,
Dirt Roads is officially on the way. It’s been contracted by Allen & Unwin
When driving out in the country, ever wondered where those old dirt roads might lead? They veer off into the hidden gullies, run through creeks and weave through the bush. They entice you to follow and you're never really sure where they will take you.
And for Matt Harvey, they could lead to a whole new life.
For my latest book, we’re moving away from
Violet Falls and exploring the tiny town of White Gum Creek. The town is in the middle of the Victorian Central Highlands and nestled in old gold country.
Dirt Roads is a story about
a woman who shoulders the responsibility of her family’s farm and a man who is
desperate need of a fresh start.
It’ll be out next year,
so stay tuned for the date. J
the blurb –
Dirt roads can take you off the beaten track but
somehow they’ll always lead you home.
Matt Harvey wants to put tragedy behind him, and
White Gum Creek looks like just the place for a fresh start. All he wants is a
little peace and time to work on his next novel. Problem is he keeps getting on
the wrong side of his prickly neighbour Bec Duprey.
Rebecca Duprey is trying to hold her family farm,
Bluestone Ridge together. It’s been difficult since her father’s accident. The
daily running of the farm falls squarely on her shoulders. She works from dawn
to dusk and hasn’t got time for a life, let alone the new neighbour that keeps
getting in her way.
I’m so excited to be
able to share Matt and Bec’s story with you all. Hope you like it J
like millions of people across the globe, I love Game of Thrones. I sit,
waiting (not so patiently) every Monday morning for the live stream through
Foxtel. Do not ring me, talk to me or knock at my door because I just won’t
answer. The entire sixth season has been great from No One to the horrific brutality of the Battle of the Bastards and finally the triumph over House bloody
Bolton. And I have to say that the season 6 finale was the most satisfying and uplifting
one of the whole series to date.
the finale, I couldn’t settle. Perhaps it was the knowledge that I’d have to
wait until next year for Season 7. Or maybe it was I just couldn’t quite say
goodbye yet. Anyway, I went around the web and checked out a few commentaries
and reaction videos. I think some of the reaction videos can be quite funny but
as a rule, I generally don’t watch them – yet this week I did.
learnt several things as I watched. The first one is that I’m not the only one
that makes stabby gestures and yells at the t.v. – kill him, stab him, oh, for heaven’s sake just kill him. So I
suppose that’s comforting on some level.
second point was just how important storytelling is. From time immemorial we
have sat around fires as the night closed in and told each other stories of
great heroes, battles and magic. The stories served to teach us about bravery
in different forms, strength, honour, love, vengeance. They tell of how our
world came into being and how we fit within it. They taught us how to live and
what to aspire to. From Achilles on the plain of Ilium, the tricky Odysseus and
the Heroic Code to the myths of Asgard, Beowulf and the Mabinogion to
fairytales, 1001 Nights, medieval ballads and the Parsifal myth; they all have
lessons to those willing to listen. How to be brave in the face of adversity,
how to show compassion, how to use your wits and how to live with honour.
of Thrones Season 6 - Battle of the Bastards (Credit: HBO)
above image shows the lovely Jon Snow facing down the enemy supposedly single handily.
It is not an original image and has been used to optimum effect in storytelling
for centuries, but it still evokes a powerful response in reader/watcher/
listener. A hero or a small group of heroes confront a huge insurmountable
force. His cause seems lost and yet he will still meet his enemy head on and
third thing I noticed with the reaction videos was that they were very similar.
I suppose I should have expected that they would be. We all seemed to cheer,
cringe and shout for joy in the same places. And in my case cue the stabby
gestures and the kill him rant.
the underlying theme for me was that the old lessons were still there. And it
doesn’t matter in what format they’re presented – oral, written, drawn or on
the screen. They reinforce what we have already learned when reading our very
first fairytales and myths. They connect us and give a shared view of what it
is to be heroic. And then with that knowledge our perception of what could be/should
be is altered. How you internalise and use the information is up to you. When
confronted with a situation do you react or do you draw on the knowledge
no, I don’t mean picking up a Valyrian sword and hunting down a nearest White Walker.
But rather taking the higher ground, the warrior’s path and the heroic code.
You’re brave, you’re clever, you endure, you know what’s right, you’re Achilles,
you’re Beowulf – you’re House Stark.
My first rural romance,
McKellan’s Run has turned one. Yep, it’s been out in the big wide world for a
year. I have no idea where that time went.
McKellan’s Run is set in
the fictional town of Violet Falls. The town is in Central Victoria and in the
middle of old gold country. It’s a story about learning to live with past mistakes
and taking chances.
ago, Violet Beckett made the mistake of falling for the wrong MacKellan brother
and both she and her younger sister, Lily, paid the price. Now eight years
later, fate has brought Violet and her daughter, Holly, back to the house
Violet grew up in...As soon as Violet runs into Mac MacKellan, she wonders if
she should run all the way back to the city. But something about the look in
his eyes makes her want to linger. Can she trust him, can she trust herself or will
she be burned again?
has had a soft spot for Violet Beckett for longer than he can remember. It
almost killed him to watch his brother woo her, use her and finally lose her.
From their very first encounter he's hooked. But how can he convince her that
not all MacKellans are the same?
The surprise this morning
was the arrival of an advance copy in the new B-format. So from June you can
choose between ‘Big Mac’ or‘Little Mac’.
I really love the smaller format book – it’s so cute. J
Not sure how long it will
last but at the time I wrote this post McKellan’s Run (ebook) was on sale
through Amazon. J
I keep getting questions
from readers wondering who the next pairing in Violet Falls should be. I’m open
for suggestions and I’d love to hear from you.I’m thinking that the town’s favourite princess, Charlotte Somervilleneeds a story – what do you think?
In the meantime I’m
hitting the keyboard and working on my current project about the tiny town of
White Gum Creek.
has been a bit tumultuous over the past few months. Anyway, I’m back and hopefully
things will settle down and I’ll be able to get back into the swing – a la
writing that is.
a bit of news. The small publisher that my early medieval romances were with is
closing its doors. This means that I’ll be getting the rights back. Some I will
republish myself and there are a couple I want to rewrite. The Lords of
Foxwoods Hall is the coupling of two novellas – Capturing Bliss and Seizing
Heaven. I really loved these stories and it was always my intention to finish
the series. I always thought that a magical betrothal ring which is handed down
to each generation of the Reynard family was intriguing. So I’m toying with the idea of enlarging and
rewriting the first two stories and then writing the next two instalments.
goodbye Jupiter Garden Press and I’ll always be grateful for you picking up my
very first novella – The Trinket Seller’s Daughter.
other news, Hartley’s Grange which is the second book in the Violet Falls
series is doing well and become an Australian bestseller (which is absolutely
wonderful and I’m so happy that people think Flynn Hartley is as yummy as I
do!). So if you’re tempted to while away a few hours with a sexy grazier, I
hope you’ll give Hartley’s Grange a go.
So the day has finally arrived and Hartley’s Grange has
been released into the wild. Hartley’s Grange is an Australian Rural Romance
(affectionately known as a Ru-Ro).
Grange is set in the fictional town of Violet Falls and centres around Flynn as
he attempts to win over the heart of Lily Beckett. Up until now, Flynn has been
known as a player. He’s never allowed his emotions to get tangled up with
anyone else’s. But when Lily Beckett arrives back in town he finds himself in
danger of falling in love for the first time.
thought she had it all until the day her life crashed and burned. So she’s
running back to her big sister Violet, to lick her wounds before trying to get
herself back together. She’s pretty much sworn off men for good... well, at
least for a while and the last thing she needs is the town’s sexy womanizer
chasing after her.
knows that she shouldn’t even be contemplating the idea of her and Flynn but
the problem is that he can be so damn tempting. She’s been burnt by love and
Flynn doesn’t do commitment – so realistically where does that leave them?
can love really change a bad boy’s ways?
If you want a chance of winning a copy – head on over
to Australian Rural Romance and say hello.
The last couple of months
have been tumultuous, topsy-turvy and more than a little challenging. Added to
that my Muse decided to run off on an extended road trip with her wayward
Exhibit One –
She’s been off having a
marvellous time while I’ve been attempting (and not succeeding) to put some
words on paper / computer screen.
Finally, after I was sure
that she’d abandoned me for good my Muse has finally returned. Although she
does look a little rough around the edges – I guess too much partying with ambrosia
will do that to you.
Anyway the upside is that
the words are beginning to flow again – thank goodness. The word count for Dirt Roads (a rural
romance) is beginning to creep up – Yay!
Hartley’s Grange is due
for release on the 27th Jan – I’m so excited I can’t wait. It’s up
for pre-order on Amazon already but soon you’ll be able to grab it in physical
form as well. J