Category Archives: Author Harvest

Author V.K. Black and Campfire Tales

When I found out a fellow Aussie author was hitting the road for five months to travel the country in I remember saying, “Oh, the places you’ll see!”

That author is V.K. Black and she’s taken her experiences and turned them into a series of short stories called Campfire Tales. So, what’s VK have to say?

You were so right, Jenn. Incredible, wonderful places. Kakadu, Litchfield Park, Broome, Uluru, a helicopter flight over the Bungle Bungles, whales, off South Australia – spouts everywhere.

The office looks familiar, V.K. I have a similar one right now, but in Victoria.

The photo of me at our table is when we were camped next to a river in the Pilbara. Nice office, huh? That notepad on the table contains the first draft of Campfire Tales, which is the anthology of short stories I was writing as I travelled around Australia.

And now—drum roll please—they’re published!

Tell us about the book.

Campfire Tales follows the adventures of Ellie and Michael, a young honeymooning couple, as they travel around Australia. Most co-incidentally, Ellie and Michael follow exactly the same route around Australia that we took. All of the stories in this anthology were inspired by little things that happened, snatches of conversations we heard, and people we met.

About Campfire Tales

Hawaii? Paris? Goodness, no. On their honeymoon, Ellie and Michael travel around Australia in their battered old land cruiser, sleep in a tent, and don’t mind at all that their air mattress is always flat the next morning. They encounter a gunman at a remote campsite, help a woman dealing with emotional abuse, and meet the warring owners of an amazing caravan.

Our very-much-in-love couple make love, fight, make up, and meet people from all walks of life during their incredible adventure. So sit back with your thermos of coffee (or a glass of wine, if you’re more like Ellie and Michael) and follow our happy couple’s adventures around Australia.

Where to get the book

Available for 99 cents from Amazon and Kobo. More Buy Links can be found on V.K. Black’s Website.

Leave a reply below if you wish.

Author, Fiona Palmer writes a letter to her 26 y.o self

To celebrate her latest release – The Family Secret – I asked my friend (and everyone’s favourite rural romance author) Fiona Palmer to give her younger self the benefit of her experience. Here’s what she wrote…

Dear 26 year old self,

Yes, you may be tired with a newborn and a nearly two year old, not to mention working full time as you run the local general store and then trying to keep the house half clean and everyone fed, but keep putting one foot in front of the other. And those crazy thoughts you have which have somehow manifested into a story about living in the country, well – let them come. It’s your passion for the land, your small community and the inspiration you draw from this unique way of life that drives this story forward. And soon it will grow to the point where you’ll start typing it out while the kids are asleep or the shop is quiet. Stolen moments to let story grow.

Keep persisting, it will take three years! But you will reach the end and will have started a journey you never would have dreamed possible. Not from someone who struggled at school, left after year eleven and hated English the most. Quite literally, you will fall into a new wondrous career which ignites your creative side. Who cares that you can’t spell, it doesn’t matter anyway as you have heaps of friends who are teachers and they will love proofreading your book.

You’ve always been willing to give things a go so don’t let fear hold you back when you decide to write a letter to Penguin and send them your first three chapters without an agent. Throw caution to the wind, you always have.

Enjoy the ride that’s about to begin. I can tell you it’s amazing.

Love, Fiona

Fiona Palmer Fiona PalmerABOUT THE AUTHOR: Fiona Palmer lives in the tiny rural town of Pingaring in Western Australia, three and a half hours south-east of Perth. She discovered Danielle Steel at the age of eleven, and has now written her own brand of rural romance. She has attended romance writers’ groups and received an Australian Society of Authors mentorship for her first novel, The Family Farm. She has extensive farming experience, does the local mail run, and was a speedway-racing driver for seven years. She spends her days writing, working as a farm hand, helping out in the community and looking after her two children.

Fiona online: www.fionapalmer.com and Facebook or  Buy at Booktopia

What advice does author @fiona_palmer give her 26 y.o self? #LetterToMyself… Click To Tweet

 To see the list of authors taking part in this letter-writing blog series: CLICK

Wanting to honour the lost art of letter writing through this blog series, I also opened my fourth novel with a character writing a letter. And not just any letter. It’s a story — perhaps the most important he’ll ever tell.

The Other Side of the SeasonReady for a sea change

Life is simple on top of the mountain for David, Matthew and Tilly until the winter of 1979 when tragedy strikes, starting a chain reaction that will ruin lives for years to come. Those who can, escape the Greenhill banana plantation. One stays—trapped for the next thirty years on the mountain and haunted by memories and lost dreams. That is until the arrival of a curious young woman, named Sidney, whose love of family shows everyone the truth can heal, what’s wrong can be righted, the lost can be found, and . . . there’s another side to every story.

BUY now from Amazon, KoboiTunes, or

Booktopia

 

Author, Kim Kelly, writes a letter to her 15 y.o self.

Dear Kim,

You’ve just run out of the classroom in heaving, desperate tears. This feels like the worst thing that’s ever happened – and it feels like it’s all your fault. It seems that you’ve let everyone down – your parents, yourself, your school, and your lovely teacher, Mr Emery, who you’ve just told to go away.Jewel Sea - FB blog Banner

Your head is spinning. Your heart is a bird beating madly against a window. You can’t catch your breath. The summer heat is suffocating – and it seems you’ve brought that on yourself, too.

But it’s okay. Really, it is. You’ve had an anxiety attack – that’s all this is. A trick of the mind. The world won’t stop turning because nerves have got the better of you and you’ve had to pull out of the public speaking competition. No-one cares about the competition. They only care about you. Tell the people who love you how you feel. Tell them what’s going on.

Holding these shadows inside yourself is going to cause you a lot of grief for a long time, and shame will cause you to make some fairly appalling decisions. Anxiety will trap you in its fist for thirty years, dragging you down, blinding you to your strengths and gifts. It will physically trap you in your house at one point, making you too terrified to go outside, making you unable to drive your kids to school.

It will cause you to not quite see the very brave and tenacious woman growing all the time beneath the shadows. The woman who gives of herself so fiercely: a mother, a friend, a lover. A writer.

Kim Kelly 15You will do some outrageously courageous things. You will step out into the sun despite your
fears. You will even risk your life to save your lover and never quite understand how you did it. You will write out your heart every day – novels and novels of it – and although right now, here as you catch your breath outside the classroom, it’s unthinkable that you will ever be able to talk about your writing, you will overcome this fear too. In fact, these days it can be difficult to shut you up.

You still have anxiety – you will always have your struggles with anxiety – but you will learn to listen to those who love you, you will learn to speak through the shadows when you must, and you will never let anxiety rob you of the sun again.

Signed,

Your forty-eight-year-old self.

PS: And you really needn’t have worried about embarrassing yourself in front of Mr Emery. He can guess what you’re going through, and he’s a writer too. He’ll go on to become an esteemed Australian poet – and one of your biggest fans.

KK high res (2)JewelSea_low res copy

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Kim Kelly has written four novels and the acclaimed novella, Wild Chicory. When she’s not writing, she’s an editor and literary consultant – because too much story is never enough.

Her latest novel is Jewel Sea. Buy from preferred retailer:
CLICK: The Author People and for the next stop on Kim’s blog tour go to:  A Bigger, Brighter World: Wednesday 14th September

Blog: https://kkauthorlady.wordpress.com/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KimKellyAuthor/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/KimKellyAuthor

What advice does @kimkellyauthor give her 16 y.o self? #LetterToMyself… Click To Tweet

Wanting to honour the lost art of letter writing through this blog series, I also opened my fourth novel with a character writing a letter. And not just any letter. It’s a story — perhaps the most important he’ll ever tell.

The Other Side of the SeasonReady for a sea change

Life is simple on top of the mountain for David, Matthew and Tilly until the winter of 1979 when tragedy strikes, starting a chain reaction that will ruin lives for years to come. Those who can, escape the Greenhill banana plantation on the outskirts of Coffs Harbour. One stays—trapped for the next thirty years on the mountain and haunted by memories and lost dreams. That is until the arrival of a curious young woman, named Sidney, whose love of family shows everyone the truth can heal, what’s wrong can be righted, the lost can be found, and . . . there’s another side to every story.

BUY now from Amazon, KoboiTunes, or

Booktopia

 

Author, Tess Woods, Writes To Her 18 y.o Self #giveaway

So Tess,

You’re eighteen – finally old enough to go out clubbing after five months of university purgatory where you were the youngest. Here’s some life pointers from your forty-three year old self:

  • That guy you’re in love with? Babe, he’s just not that into you, he never will be and he’s actually a bit of a tool. Let it go! Now that guy who is your great friend but you don’t want to risk the friendship by taking it to the next level? Yeah, him. I’m here to tell you the friendship dies anyway, so go for it – when he tries to kiss you in a few months at The Metro, let him!
  • Stop freaking out about your hair. They’re about to invent this thing called GHD – it’s a ceramic hair straightener. Sit tight, it’s coming and it will solve all your problems.
  • Ignore your dad when he tells you that no man will want you because you’re too opinionated and strong willed. He doesn’t know what he’s talking about. The relationships you have will be with men who love you for your strength of character so don’t question that for a minute. Also God is sending you a daughter called Lara as karma for your strong willed nature, just you wait!
  • Some serious stuff is going to go down between your mum and dad. Hang in there, I promise it will all be okay in the end and the fears and worries you’ve been carrying around like a lead weight in your gut for your whole life about the situation at home will all be resolved in the next few years. It’s going to get really ugly first, but you’ll all come out the other side just fine.
  • Take your Ventolin inhaler everywhere, don’t be lazy with it.
  • Don’t waste any time worrying that you won’t get married and have children, I know this is the main thing you want in life, so let me tell you, it happens okay? Now go and live it up, you’re young, go have fun with your friends and forget about finding Mr Right! Btw, the first two guys you think are Mr Right are actually your practice runs. The third one is the keeper!
  • You’ll still be super close to your childhood bestie when you’re in your forties. I know you’re worried now because you’ve gone to different universities and she’s hanging out with actors while you hang out physios and doctors but through thick and thin, she’s going stick with you forever and she’ll be right beside you in your darkest moments.
  • Eat less crap. You’re forming bad habits and I’m paying the price here!
  • When you fail your first year of university and are completely devastated, don’t be, you’re about to have the most amazing year ever and you’ll be really glad you failed.
  • Guess what, you still love Sting and Pat Cash at forty-three! And they are both still HOT!
  • When your friend Jess tells you that she feels like her life is pointless and then goes to get in her car – DO NOT let her get in that car. Take her for a coffee or you’ll be heartbroken forever.
  • Brad Pitt doesn’t marry Gwyneth Paltrow, I think you should be prepared for this.
  • That passion you have for human rights will only get stronger with time. You do great stuff here, you should be proud! And they free Nelson Mandela, he becomes the leader of South Africa – no shit!
  • Stop aiming for perfect, it’s never going to happen. You will continue to make monumental stuff ups, lots of them. It’s always okay in the end.
  • Finally, don’t throw anything out. All your old crap will become retro this and retro that. Hang onto everything and wait for eBay to get invented.

Love from your much-older-ever-so-slightly-wiser-still-mostly-hasn’t-got-her-shit-together-yet-self!

Tess Woods- smaller photoLove at First Flight Print CoverAbout Tess Woods:

Tess Woods is a physiotherapist who lives in Perth, Australia with one husband, two children, one dog and one cat wo rules over all of them. Her debut novel, Love at First Flight, first released as an eBook in April 2015, received worldwide critical acclaim, hit the best-seller charts in Australia and was voted Book of the Year in the AusRom Today Reader’s Choice Awards 2015. Tess was also top ten nominated as Best New Author. Love at First Flight is the first HarperCollins Australia digital book acquisition to be given a print release in August 2016. Tess’s short story, Destiny in a Day was released in the anthology Hot Stuff: Surfing Love and she is currently putting the finishing touches her second full-length novel, Beautiful Messy Love. When she isn’t working or being a personal assistant to her kids, Tess enjoys reading and all kinds of grannyish pleasures like knitting, baking, drinking tea, watching Downton Abbey and tending to the veggie patch.

You can learn more about Tess on her website www.tesswoods.com.au or you can connect with her on Facebook or Twitter.

WIN! A signed copy is up for grabs.

Leave a comment or share online to go into the draw.

What advice does @tesswoodsauthor give her 18 y.o self? #LetterToMyself… Click To Tweet

Wanting to honour the lost art of letter writing through this blog series, I also opened my fourth novel with a character writing a letter. And not just any letter. It’s a story — perhaps the most important he’ll ever tell.

The Other Side of the SeasonReady for a sea change

Life is simple on top of the mountain for David, Matthew and Tilly until the winter of 1979 when tragedy strikes, starting a chain reaction that will ruin lives for years to come. Those who can, escape the Greenhill banana plantation on the outskirts of Coffs Harbour. One stays—trapped for the next thirty years on the mountain and haunted by memories and lost dreams. That is until the arrival of a curious young woman, named Sidney, whose love of family shows everyone the truth can heal, what’s wrong can be righted, the lost can be found, and . . . there’s another side to every story.

CLICK for more or leave a comment below for Tess.

#WriteRoundOz w/ Kayte Nunn (giveaway)

Rose's Vintage Kayte NunnAs I travel around this beautiful country in my caravan, I sometimes get to ‘go home’. I’m heading to my childhood to see…Kayte Nunn on Sydney’s breezy northern beaches.

Kayte NummThank you for letting my park my rig on your… 

Front lawn.

What’s that I see written on your ‘welcome mat’? 

Did you bring the wine?

(You never have to ask!)

Now…

 

 

Downsizing my life into a 24 ft caravan meant leaving lots of things behind in boxes. What (or who!!) would you have trouble leaving behind if you took off in a caravan?

My (admittedly dwindling) wine collection. My KitchenAid Stand Mixer (well, in my dreams I have one. The reality is a battered hand mixer, but it still turns out great cakes).

Whose home would you like to visit in your caravan and why?

I’d park it outside Eddie Redmayne’s house just for the pleasure of seeing his beautiful cheekbones every day. Alternatively, I’d park it outside John Denver’s ranch (yes, I know he’s dead but I bet he lives on a ranch in heaven), and ask him to sing Annie’s Song to me.

Do you REALLY have room at your house to park a fifth wheeler caravan and do you mind visitors? (Oh, sorry, you don’t have to answer that one!!) 

Country curiosities…

My latest novel, Season of Shadow and Light, has a strong horse theme. (I love what horses can teach us). If you were an animal what would you be?

A giraffe. They are so tall they can reach the highest branches, they have gorgeous long eyelashes and move with a lanky elegance (quite the opposite of me!).

You’re cooking and your food going up against the best cooks from the CWA (Country Women’s Association). What would be your winning dish?

Cake. Cake and more cake. I love to bake. I’ve just got a batch of caramel date cupcakes out of the oven, actually. Procrasti-baking is what I do best when I am supposed to be writing.

About you…

What is the hardest part of writing for you?

Sitting down at the computer – see procrasti-baking, above.

If someone was to write your biography, what do you think the title should be?

Because all the recent bestsellers have the word ‘the girl’ in them (The Girl on the Train, Gone Girl, the Girl in the Red Coat): The Girl Who Loved Cake (and wine).

Favourite four…

Favourite place in Australia: Whitehaven beach. I have been there twice and always come away wishing I had more time there.

Favourite holiday destination: Anywhere where the sun is shining and there’s blue water or plenty of powder snow.

Favourite movie: Before Sunrise.

Favourite quote: ‘Your playing small doesn’t serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you… And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.’  ~  Marianne Williamson

If I said to you, “Just entertain me for five minutes, I’m not going to talk,” what would you do?

I’d read poetry to you – the First World War poets probably, Edward Thomas, Siegfried Sassoon, Rupert Brooke…

Time for… Fact or fiction. (Giveaway)

Kayte, you’re a fiction writer. How about you tell us a secret and we’ll guess if it’s true or not. Every comment goes into the draw.

Okay, folks, to go into the draw to win a print copy of Rose’s Vintage* take a stab – fact or fiction?

“The heroine, Rose, in Rose’s Vintage is really me.”

(* Aust postal addies only – sorry o/s folk.)

Connect with Kayte:

Website: www.kaytenunn.com

Author, Natasha Lester, writes a letter to her 16 y.o. self

Natasha Lester writes…

A Letter to My 16 Year Old Self

You’re at high school, and you spend every day wishing to be somebody other than who you are. Stop doing that right now!

You don’t need to be more beautiful, have more friends, be taller, have bigger boobs, or—here’s the killer—be dumber than you are. If there’s one thing I can absolutely reassure you of it’s this: when you’re older, you’ll be so glad you have brains and you’ll look back at yourself right now and wonder why the hell you deliberately gave wrong answers in your maths test. You won’t fit in any better just because, for once, you don’t get perfect marks.

 And who cares about fitting in anyway? Fitting in is just another word for being the same as everyone else. So, people think you’re a bookish nerd. Well guess what? Being a bookish nerd is secret code for author, and that dream job is in store for you if you just stay the course.

So revel in being yourself. Don’t think for one minute you’d prefer to be Miss So-And-So because she’s got a boyfriend, or to be Miss Somebody Else because she’s so popular. Popularity in high school is not an accurate predictor of anything in the future, and it doesn’t bring any especial rewards.

What does bring rewards is deciding to do what you love, and going after that until you get it. And you, my love, have the courage and the passion to do both, to have a life at the shockingly old age of 42 that you wouldn’t change for all the popularity in high school in the world.

 Lots of love,

Your 42 year old self xx

Natasha Lester bookNatasha Lester AuthorAbout Natasha (and her Mr Fitzgerald!):

Natasha Lester’s third book, A Kiss from Mr Fitzgerald, will be published by Hachette Australia in April 2016, with her fourth book to follow in April 2017. She is also the author of the award-winning What is Left Over After (2010) and If I Should Lose You (2012). The Age newspaper has described her as “a remarkable Australian talent.” When she’s not writing or teaching writing, she can usually be found at yoga, drinking tea, or playing dress-ups with her three children.

Connect with Natasha:

[Tweet “What advice does @natasha_lester give her 16 y.o self? #LetterToMyself https://www.jennjmcleod.com/blog/a-letter-to-myself-author-list”]

Wanting to honour the lost art of letter writing through this blog series, I also opened my fourth novel with a character writing a letter. And not just any letter. It’s a story –perhaps the most important he’ll ever tell.

The Other Side of the SeasonReady for a sea change

Life is simple on top of the mountain for David, Matthew and Tilly until the winter of 1979 when tragedy strikes, starting a chain reaction that will ruin lives for years to come. Those who can, escape the Greenhill banana plantation on the outskirts of Coffs Harbour. One stays—trapped for the next thirty years on the mountain and haunted by memories and lost dreams. That is until the arrival of a curious young woman, named Sidney, whose love of family shows everyone the truth can heal, what’s wrong can be righted, the lost can be found, and . . . there’s another side to every story.

CLICK for more or leave a comment for Natasha using the LEAVE A REPLY link below. Thank you.

Author, Sara Foster, writes a letter to her 30 y.o. self

A LETTER TO MYSELF BANNERDear Sara,

Happy 30th birthday from your 40-year-old self. Everything is so new at the moment: you are newly married, still fairly new to living in Perth, in a new house, with new freelance editing contracts for Australian publishers rather than UK publishers. I’m happy to tell you that all those decisions will be great ones, lucky you! Therefore, I wish I could spare you the anxiety of worrying about everything, but then that’s just part of who you are! It can never be said that you make a decision without thinking it through (sometimes tying your mind into knots)!

Life is looking good, but the next ten years will be beyond anything you can dream of right now. You haven’t even finished your first book yet, and you’re not convinced you can do it, but soon you’ll have finished not one but two books, and in the next decade you’ll finish – and publish – FOUR! Not only that but two little girls will come along and turn your life upside down and create merry chaos but will bring unimaginable riches and purpose into your life. In fact, it’s very hard to think back beyond their existence, because your mind is still slightly blurred by six years of uneven sleep and the many demands of a young family.

You are capable of so much more than you think you are right now. But I’m glad I can’t go back and tell you, because I can see that it’s been really important for you to discover this a little bit at a time. In the process you have taught yourself a lot about who you are, and what you can and can’t deal with. Which is much more valuable than someone else telling you – even an older version of yourself.

Finally, when you get on a boat with Germaine Greer, don’t try to talk to her about sea eagles – it’s just not worth it. 🙂

Love,

40-Year-Old You!

all_that_is_lost_COVER-2-page-001Sara Foster Image 1 (2016) ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Sara Foster is the bestselling author of four novels, All That is Lost Between Us, Shallow Breath, Beneath the Shadows and Come Back to Me. She lives in Perth, WA, with her husband and two young daughters. To find out more visit

www.sarafoster.com.au or

www.facebook.com/sarafosterauthor

BUY All That Is Between Us now by clicking on the links: Amazon eBook  OR  a PRINT copy from Booktopia

HAPPY FOURTH BOOK, Sara.

Now, did you know…?

My fourth novel opens with a character writing a letter, which is what prompted this blog series. And not just any letter. It’s a story –perhaps the most important he’ll ever tell.

The Other Side of the SeasonReady for a sea change

Everything has a reflection…

And there’s another side to every story.

Life is simple on top of the mountain for David, Matthew and Tilly until the winter of 1979 when tragedy strikes, starting a chain reaction that will ruin lives for years to come. Those who can, escape the Greenhill banana plantation on the outskirts of Coffs Harbour. One stays—trapped for the next thirty years on the mountain and haunted by memories and lost dreams. That is until the arrival of a curious young woman, named Sidney, whose love of family shows everyone the truth can heal, what’s wrong can be righted, the lost can be found, and…

. . . there’s another side to every story.

PRE-ORDER your copy now from Amazon, KoboiTunes, or

Booktopia