Author Spotlight and Giveaway: RUBY finalist and Lynn Wilding award nominee, Juanita Kees…

Today we welcome to the Author Spotlight our very own RWA blog supremo, Juanita Kees.  Welcome, Juanita, and congratulations on the release of ‘Under Cover of Dark ’!  Could you give us the blurb, please?

New Australian romantic suspense follows Under the Hood, about a Western Australian drug gang, the teenagers they recruit, and the cop who wants to bring them down.

When Mark Johnson delves deeper into his investigation into the murder of Tiny Watts and the involvement of a teenage gang with sleazy lawyer, Gino Bennetti, and his drug world ties, the last thing he expects is to be interviewing Gino’s widow, a woman in a world of trouble.

When her husband is shot and killed, it is both a relief and a disaster. Lily has her son to protect and secrets that run deeper than the scars she bears. Mark Johnson is the last person she wants uncovering those secrets, especially the truth about her son, Luke’s involvement in Tiny Watts’ murder.

As the investigation continues and Lily’s wounds begin to heal, she finds the detective easy to trust and the friendship between them blossoms into more. But the secret Lily holds places everyone in very real danger. When it is finally revealed, Lily will lose everything: her son, the man she’s grown to love, her freedom, and her life.

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Also, congratulations on being a RUBY finalist for ‘Under the Hood’. How did it feel to see your name in the finals?

Surreal! There are so many wonderful names up there amongst the finalists. I am both honoured and in awe. I’d hate to be one of the judges with all that talent to choose from. I’m thrilled to make it to the finals with this baby. I had so much fun writing it. Thank you to the judges who read and enjoyed it enough to get it nominated for this fabulous award.

You are one busy, busy lady! Between being a freelance editor, writer and senior editor on the RWA Blog, mum to three boys and wife, how on earth do you manage your time?

Don’t forget the dog!  Plus I work three days a week as an administrator at a Holden Dealership. Seriously? I don’t know. It takes a lot of juggling some days. Perhaps because I love what I do with such passion, I don’t see it as a chore. I do know that there are days when I could use an extra twenty four hours!

‘Under Cover of Dark’ is a romantic suspense. What are the elements of a compelling romantic suspense?

A fast pace, tension, high drama and the odd plot twist surprise to keep the reader engaged in the story, always wanting to know what will happen next. I like to take my readers on an emotional journey as well as an adventure. When they put the book down, I want them to be exhausted, emotionally drained and in love. If the reader feels as if they’ve been a part of the characters’ journey, the author’s job is done.

How do protagonists and heroes in romance differ from those in romantic suspense?

Romantic suspense characters have an edge. They are mysterious, brave yet protective, a little dangerous and love taking risks. While romance heroes wine and dine their heroines in comfort and style, romantic suspense heroes are out there in the wild world saving their heroines in the face of danger. I’d happily settle for both!

Is there any other genre you could see yourself writing in the future?

I’m dabbling in a little Fantasy at the moment with my next series set on Paradise Beach.

When you’re not editing, writing, RWA-ing, what do you do in your spare time?

Spare time??  I potter around my garden, restore garden furniture, read and enjoy the odd motorbike ride to wherever the road takes us.

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As a professional editor, do you find that in your own work you edit as you go? What is the main challenge in being both an editor and an author?

The hardest thing is shutting down the editor in me when I write, so yes, I edit as I go. It takes forever! One of my critique partners once said, “You write a very clean dirty draft.” The downside of that is my stories don’t get written very fast!

What would we find on your bookshelf/ereader?

A LOT of romance in any genre, my Tony Park and Matthew Reilly collections, and the odd biography.

You’ve written about subjects as diverse as a motor dealership, gangs and drugs, and kidnapping. How do you go about researching these topics for authenticity?

I’ve worked in the motor industry forever and am a car fanatic. My father was a mechanic by trade, my mother hails from generations of General Motors employees and I married an auto electrician. I have oil in my veins and loads of material to work with!

In Under Cover of Dark, I was lucky enough to have the help of a prison officer who I probed mercilessly with questions. Understandably, there were some questions he couldn’t answer but I was blown away by his absolute commitment to juvenile offender rehabilitation, despite the possibility they’d re-offend.

I watched a lot of reality programs on gangs in prisons and studied their habits and methods of communication. It’s fascinating to see how many ways a coded message can be delivered.

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Can you tell us a little about your current work in progress?

I’m working on the next book in the Tag Raiders Series, Under his Protection, which features the youngest member of the gang, Connor, his mum Mia, and Ethan Wright who is a counsellor at the Tiny Watts Rehabilitation Centre opened by TJ and Scott Devin (Under the Hood).

Thanks for coming on today, Juanita. Could you give us a sneaky peek at one of your favourite parts of ‘Under Cover of Dark’, please?

Absolutely!!

He stood almost toe to toe with her now. She felt the warmth of his body, the temptation to sink into the comfort it provided. Her body swayed towards him with the strength of the pull. Strong, warm fingers tipped up her chin gently. Dark grey eyes searched hers for the truth and promised a safe haven from harm.

‘My offer of witness protection is still on the table. Take it and let’s end this nightmare of yours.’

Lily hesitated a moment longer, torn between telling the truth and protecting her son who had suffered so much at the hands of these criminals already. She’d borne this burden alone for too long. The strength to fight against it waned as the ache of her strained muscles surfaced.

‘Yes, he has a diary.’

With a sigh, Mark pulled her into his arms and held her against the beat of his heart. Lily listened to the comforting tattoo for a moment, savoured the warmth of his arms and allowed herself to believe he meant what he said.

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Web links

Website

Blog

Facebook

Twitter

Goodreads

Buy link

Juanita is kindly gifting one  eCopy of ‘Under Cover of Dark’ to one lucky reader. To enter all you have to do is leave a comment for Juanita below. The winner will be contacted via email, so please make sure that we can reach you!

And finally, on behalf of all RWA members, thank you Juanita for all that you do for this wonderful organisation. We wish you the best of luck with the RUBY and the Lynn Wilding award!

*Ed’s Note: Thank you for having me! I cannot tell you how much it means to me to be part of such a wonderful family here at RWA. Each conference is like coming home, a family reunion that inspires, encourages and motivates. Volunteering is a way to give back to the members what they give me – love, support, creative advice and a place where I feel I belong. Here’s to many more years of success and growth for all! You rock!

To my fellow nominees in the Lynne Wilding and RUBY, wishing you all a hearty congratulations and good luck for Awards night. I’m already a winner to be in such talented company. Thank you.  

 

 

 

 

 

Romance Rocks Presents…

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With just one week to go to Romance Rocks 2014, RWA is proud to introduce you to our featured speakers and what they’re offering in their presentations:

Friday Workshop Presenter and Speaker – James Scott Bell

Writing the Knockout Novel

This Knockout Novel Workshop will get you into the deep tissue of your fiction. You’ll learn the tool and techniques of the masters, including:

• What Plot is really all about
• The power of disturbance and doorways
• How to write scenes with no dull parts
• Creating “jump off the page” characters
• The fastest way to improve your manuscript
• The essentials of great dialogue
• The secret of voice

Saturday session 3 ~ Revision & Self-Editing

The bestselling author of Plot & Structure revisits the art and craft of writing with a comprehensive look into how to polish your manuscript into the gem and editor or agent (or reader) can’t resist. With proven techniques, James will walk attendees through revision and self-editing, so that each writer can get the most out of their work, and present it in its best light.

Keynote Speaker – Cherry Adair

Build 3-D Characters So They Leap Off The Page

Compelling characters drive your story. Without rich, 3-D characters the story flat lines, leaving the reader lost, bored, or wondering why they invested their time. Fully developed characters shouldn’t be an afterthought. (even if you prefer writing by the seat of your pants) Crafting captivating characters starts before the first word is written.Desire intrinsically creates conflict, making for memorable characters. You’ll learn how to give your people powerful, driving goals, as well as strong motivation for doing what they do. Cherry will show you how to seamlessly weave together their backstory with their physical descriptions to make them feel like real people instead of cardboard cutouts.

Sunday session 6 – Luminous Dialogue

Dialogue isn’t as boring as, “How would you like your eggs?” the morning after. (Unless they are dinosaur eggs!) Dialogue has to work hard and serve several purposes while at the same time entertaining your readers. Cherry will share her secrets of how to make your dialogue sparkle and sing. Discover ways to insert readable, but still authentic accents or dialects. Learn how to change narrative into fast-paced, page-turning dialogue. Learn about ‘white space’ and how to use it to make your story move faster. Find out how to make your characters sound like themselves and nobody else. Cherry will show you techniques for strengthening dialogue to make it shine on the page.

 Guest Speaker – Marie Force

Rejection Was My Friend – A ‘Rags to Riches’ publishing story

New York Times bestselling author Marie Force will share her “rags to riches” publishing story and how she went from the most rejected author in the history of rejected authors to five appearances on the New York Times bestseller list in 2013 and one more (so far) in 2014. She will share her strategy as a “hybrid” author who is engaging in both self-publishing and traditional publishing and how her innovative use of social media has been a game changer.

Sunday session 4 – Self Publishing 101

New York Times bestselling author Marie Force has self-published more than 20 original titles and sold more than 1.5 million of her self-published titles. She will share her tips and techniques for putting books in front of readers. She will cover everything from cover design to retailer challenges to effective marketing strategies to aid discoverability in an increasingly crowded field.

 Guest Speaker – Jim Azevedo

10 Trends Impacting the Future of Book Publishing

Jim Azevedo, marketing director at Smashwords, will examine how the simultaneous rise of ebooks, self-publishing and democratized access to retailers will forever transform the publishing landscape. In this session, Jim will discuss 10 publishing industry trends that will most impact the future for book authors. Learn how the power center in the book publishing industry is shifting from publishers to writers, as self-published authors realize they already have access to the tools to out-sell and out-compete the big publishers. Learn why the former stigma of self-publishing is being replaced with growing pride as self-published authors scale all the international bestseller lists.

 Saturday session 2Secrets of the Best-Selling Self-Published Ebook Authors

Since its launch in 2008, Smashwords has helped more than 80,000 authors release over 285,000 ebook titles. In this session, Jim Azevedo, marketing director at Smashwords, will unveil the secrets of the most commercially successful self-published ebook authors. Session attendees will learn from real-life examples of how authors broke out to become bestsellers. Among the many secrets in his presentation, Jim will reveal best practices strategies for cover design (including examples and an intriguing case study), pricing, platform building, distribution, how to unleash word-of-mouth buzz with viral catalysts, and how to partake in the global market for ebooks. This session is relevant for aspiring authors, intermediates and advanced publishing professionals. Novices and intermediates will learn how to think like a professional publisher. Experienced self-published authors and publishers will learn how to emulate the best practices of successful authors who are rewriting the rules of ebook self-publishing.

Guest Speaker – Kate Byrne

How Romance Rocks in the UK – An insight into the international publishing market

What kinds of romance are readers loving in the UK in 2014? What do we have in common with the Australian and US markets? Where do we differ? What are the advantages in having a publisher as your advocate in the UK? How are we working to be part of the romance community? Insight into this and more from a romance editor and passionate fan of the genre in the UK.

 Guest Speaker – Lucienne Diver

Sunday session 5 – The Publishing Process

Ever wondered what happens to your manuscript after that agent or editor accepts it? Lucienne Diver has sold over 700 titles to all the major publishers, and in this workshop she’ll address the mystery of what happens to your manuscript, and answer any questions you have on the process.

 Juiian Hewitt - Arts Media LawyerJulian Hewitt – Media Arts Lawyer

What you need to know before you sign a contract

A rundown of publishing contracts and various publishing rights and protection of an author’s copyright

 

Author Spotlight- Author Groups: The Naughty Ninjas…

 

Have you ever thought of being part a formalised writer’s group with the intention of blogging or creating a website together, but haven’t known where to start or what to expect?

Instead of shining the spotlight on sole authors, I thought it might be interesting to focus a little on authors who share a formal blog or website.  Over the coming months I will be chatting to other author groups about the mechanics and benefits of working with other authors towards a common goal.  These groups will share their experiences and knowledge so that it might inspire some of you to give it a go.

For the first in this series, please welcome Rhyll Biest and Georgina Penney from the Naughty Ninjas!

 

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Members of  the Naughty Ninjas are: Andra Ashe, Sandra Antonelli, Sarah Belle, Cate Ellink, Roz Groves, Lily Malone, Georgina Penney, Rhyll Biest.

The group commenced in February 2014 and focuses on the Romance Genre with naughtiness on the side!

Hi Rhyll and Georgina – otherwise known as the founders of The Naughty Ninjas. Thanks for joining us to discuss formal author groups. Can you tell us a bit about the Naughty Ninjas?

We’re seven Australian romance writers and one mighty Australian romance reviewer, Roz Groves. Andra, Cate and Rhyll write erotic romance, Lily and Sandra write contemporary romance, Sarah writes Ro-magic Comedy, Georgina writes Chick lit (with strong romance overtones) and all of us have a robust sense of humour, whether we’re talking about love, life, writing, reading, romance or sex. Or merkins and tentacles.

Rhyll%20Biest   GeorginaPenney

What sort of activities do the Ninjas undertake?

Our website, social media, podcasts and newsletter combine direct and indirect marketing. We share practical information about writing and marketing, books we enjoyed, and information relevant to romance (e.g. author interviews). And then there’s the naughty stuff purely for entertainment, including recipes, opinion pieces, advice columns and nerdy facts. If one of us has a launch date, the ninjas go into overdrive with promotion. There has been threat of a nudie run to promote the raft of upcoming releases but that’s on hold until Cate Ellink can knit a merkin big enough to cover up the entirety of Georgina’s wobbly bits.

What inspired you to form the Naughty Ninjas? How long did the group take in its planning stages prior to going live with a website?

Seeing other successful group sites, frustration with individual promotion efforts, and attending a promotion workshop all provided inspiration.

We started with a small core group in September 2013 who nutted out brand, aims, design and content ideas and general operation principles via Skype meetings. That part didn’t take too long and mainly involved a lot of bawdy talk and laughter. It then took us a couple of months to develop the site and fill it with content before trialling it with a small audience before the official launch on Valentine’s Day this year.

 Sandra%20_Cookieface_%20Antonelli    Cate%20_Man%20Eater_%20Ellink

What sort of issues do writers need to consider prior to forming a group- – IT, Intellectual Property, rules, expenses, etc.

If you’re looking to form a group like ours (with or without the merkins or tentacles) the key thing is going to be communication. Get all members to give you a realistic (not utopic) idea of the time they’ll have and the responsibilities they want and then halve that to allow for family dramas, book launches, bad hair days (or running out of coffee). That way you’ll start off on the right foot, with everyone having a manageable work load.

If you don’t have communication, you’re going to have trouble sorting out all the other tricksy bits and pieces when it comes to the following:

  • Deciding who is going to develop and maintain the site? (You can get mixed results if everyone is uploading to the site regardless of their tech savvy.)
  • Who owns the content, the site or each contributor?
  • Who is going to pay for the site domain, images and giveaways/prizes? How are you going to decide membership and handle disagreements or disputes?
  • How much time do you want to spend on the group and what’s the plan for sticking to that time limit?
  • How are you going to measure and report the achievement of your goals (assuming you’ve set some in the first place)?

Oh, and we can’t forget the tone of the group. Make sure you’re all on the same page when it comes to content. We ninjas can be a little risqué and it was super-important to make sure everyone was okay with that from the get-go.

 

How do you manage to keep in contact with everyone, as well as coordinate writing activities and due dates?

We’re a geographically dispersed group, with members living in Brunei, Canberra, Melbourne, WA, NSW and Queensland, so online communication is our main method (and some of it is actually serious group-related stuff!). At the moment, we mainly use email and a fantastic project organization site called Freedcamp to co-ordinate website content. The smaller stuff is all taken care of through Twitter and Facebook with the odd blog visit. The podcast is done through Skype.

Most of us are hopefully going to meet up at the conference this year as well for a couple of drinks and shenanigans as well.

roz%20grashopper%20groves    Andra%20_Madame_%20Ashe

 

What benefits do you see in writers coming together in a formal group to write and market their work?

So many benefits!

  • Other members can pick up the slack for each other when crisis or deadline looms for someone.
  • Where one blog/website might draw between 100-300 visits each day (depending on how amaze-balls you are), a single multi-author site which is cross-linked to existing blog/website readerships can theoretically be drawing over a thousand visits a day. That makes it more attractive to advertisers, sponsors and readers.
  • Fans of one author will come to the site, see who that author ‘hangs’ with and consider reading the books of other authors. I know that Wonkomance certainly worked that way for me (Rhyll). I’ve had that experience. A couple of readers have contacted me to say they found me through loving Sandra Antonelli and Lily Malone’s books (Georgina).
  • Eight people instead of one are promoting the one site (through tweets, likes, etc).
  • Eight people instead of one are creating the content for one site, so each person can spend less time on promotion. And we believe in recycling, so there’s no reason you can’t duplicate your own posts on your personal sites (blogs/websites) after they’ve appeared on the group site.
  • Instead of one lonely little brain struggling to come up with ideas all on its ownsome, eight brains work together. Assuming each of us has an average IQ of 80 (is that the average?) our site now has an IQ of 640 (which means NASA will approach us with a job offer any day now). Also, we can bounce ideas off each other and have a few laughs while getting feedback and suggestions.
  • With seven authors, that’s seven times whatever number of books each individual author has published to offer as giveaways or discounts on.
  • With eight of us, each with their own contacts and networks, our reach (in terms of finding potential sponsors, interviewees, guests etc) is wider than the Russian mafia’s.
  • Each of us writes in different styles and genres, so we’re able to bang on about a wider variety of things (which is more interesting for readers).
  • Each of us brings their own particular skills, knowledge and interests to the group. Georgina is a podcast whizz, a dab website designer and builder, and has a feel for the overseas romance community. Rhyll is a keen editor, planner and schemer (she makes some third world dictators eyeing a small neighbouring country for annexation look sloppy). Lily understands the hell out of wine, marketing and self-pubbing, Sandra is our recipe, Twitter and coffee queen, Andra and Cate bring science and erotica to the table, Sarah and Roz share their reviewing expertise, ro-magic comedy and well-developed appreciation of Cthulhu and megalodon jokes.
  • The best part is having other like-minded (i.e. fun) people to plan and speak with. Writing can be lonely, but promotion need not be. I think everyone’s energy starts to flag under the weight of promoting on their own. If your day involves working a full-time job (other than writing), meeting your family’s needs and trying to make sense of that manuscript you’re in the middle of writing, promotion can feel like many-tentacled beastie trying to drag you down. Having a group at your back to help you get the word out about your latest release and who’ll listen to you having a bit of a confidential rant, swear of happy moment is fantastic.

What have been your biggest hurdles to date?

They fall into two categories. The first is keeping track of the deadlines, who has submitted what, and what belongs to who, and where projects are at. Google Drive and Freedcamp are useful apps for sorting, backing up and tracking things. And time management. Luckily, if things go wrong, we tend to just giggle and snort at each other.

The second is managing our own crazy-keen ambition and understanding our limitations. For example, we started off with a pretty intense workload to get a decent amount of content on the site but now, six months down the track, we’ve realized that maintaining that workload isn’t necessary to get the traffic we want, so we’ve pulled things back a little and slowed down.

 

Lily%20_Beanie%20Queen_%20Malone%20copy   sarah%20belle

 

How many hours a month would you spend on the Naughty Ninjas? What types of tasks are involved?

When we started, lots! But things are much more streamlined now. Georgina spends about 18 to 20 hours a month all up taking care of formatting the podcast, the website and social media side of things (daily FB and Twitter posts) and Rhyll spends the equivalent on getting the newsletter out, scheduling, editing and all the vast minutiae of organising images for articles etc. On top of that there’s the time each Ninja takes to write their month’s articles/reviews, including any research, book reading etc. In Cate Ellink’s case, that involved knitting a merkin, sending it to Brunei and forever confounding the elderly gentleman at Customs.

We set everything up with a publishing calendar planned a month or two in advance, tied with a submission schedule designed to fill each planned item (recipe, review, interview) so if there are any problems in a given month, we’re covered.

Since we’ve got a light-fun based focus, we also try to theme things as much as possible. For example, if it’s national pedicure month, we’ll try to have several items about pedicures (and recipes with toenails).

A lot of brainstorming of ideas for promotion also goes on through Freedcamp. We also use Skype as well. Admittedly, the group Skype calls quickly degenerate into discussions of Cthulhu beanies and masturbation tents.

Is there anything you know now that you wish you’d known in the earliest days of the group?

Everything will take up double the time you expect it to, so have realistic expectations of both your and your group members’ capacity to get stuff done around life’s little (sometimes huge) hurdles.

 

What’s the difference between marketing yourself as a solo author and marketing a group of authors?

The main thing is having the knowledge that you’ve got a bunch of kickass ladies at your back when it comes to a book launch, a beta read, a celebration or a rant. We all come from different backgrounds so it’s great to have access to such a big pool of different skills and knowledge. And we all crack each other up. There’s nothing like a good laugh to dispel the blues after a bad day in the writing trenches.

 

Do you have any advice for writers who are interested in forming a group?

The main thing we’d say is don’t start a group with people who you probably wouldn’t be friends with socially. Get together a bunch of likeminded people who you know will be able to communicate well, who are comfortable with the content you want to post and the brand you want to promote. If those people make you laugh so hard that you snort tea (or coffee) through your nose, all the better!

 

Thanks so much for joining us today, Rhyll and Georgina, and for sharing your pearls of wisdom with us.

If you’d like to check out the Naughty Ninjas, you can do it via:

Facebook

Twitter

Web

 

Event Announcements

Do you have an event or workshop you’d like to share? Email your event news to cruisin@romanceaustralia.com

RWA Conference 2014 – Romance Rocks!

Getting To and From RWA 2014

There are a number of options on how to get to the Novotel Sydney Olympic Park hotel. rwa14logoedit-light-300

By Shuttle Service

There are a number of shuttle services operating from Sydney Airport that travel to Sydney Olympic Park, and if travelling in a small group, this can be a feasible option.  We recommend Canon’s Shuttles.

Members can organise their own small groups (13-seater buses); you can book a shuttle and travel for approx. $23 per trip if filling up the vehicle, or otherwise fares will be divided amongst the number of passengers. If you can’t fill a 13-seater bus, don’t worry! Members can book as smaller groups or as individuals directly with Canon’s Shuttles, and the staff at Canon’s will coordinate shuttle groups (cost will depend on flight arrivals/departures and filling up vehicles).

Please note: if you are flying in at a time when no other delegates are, the cost of transport will reflect this until (or if) more passengers are assigned to that shuttle.

To book:

  • Please have your flight times available as you book – flight numbers, arrival and departure times, etc.
  • Call Evan at Canons Shuttles on 02 9522 6868 or enquire via their website. If Evan isn’t available, speak with John.
  • Please mention RWA when booking to ensure coordination with the larger delegate group (either over the phone or in the special requirements field for online bookings).

By Taxi

Taxis operate from both the Sydney Domestic Terminals and from the Sydney International Terminal. Sheltered, supervised taxi ranks operate just outside the main doors of the terminals. On average, a taxi fare from the Sydney Domestic Terminals to Novotel Sydney Olympic park can take 30 minutes or so, and costs approx. $55-$75 one way, depending on weather conditions and traffic. Travelling by road between approx. 5-7pm is the peak period for Sydney traffic in that direction along that arterial, so please bear this in mind when booking your travel arrangements.

If you wish to book your taxi beforehand, you could try here (although many companies operate from the terminal) or call 133 300 for a Taxis Combined service.

By Public Transport

Novotel Sydney Olympic Park is diagonally opposite the Sydney Olympic Park train station. For those wanting to experience the Sydney public transport system:

  • Go to Airport Domestic (or Airport International) Train Stations, Platform 1.
  • Catch the train to Central Station and change to Platform 19 for your train to Homebush (this is the Inner West line). Depending on the train, you may need to change lines at Lidcombe Station.

Single Adult fare: $17.20

Travel time can take approx. 40 minutes.

For further information and maps, please click here.

For more information on Sydney’s transport, and for latest fare and timetable information, click here.

ARRA Book-signing event, Saturday 9 August

The Australian Romance Readers Association will be hosting a book-signing event in Sydney this August. It will be held in conjunction with the Romance Writers of Australia ARRA logo_CMYKconference, and will run from 5-6 pm on Saturday 9 August at the Pullman Hotel in Olympic Park. This is the seventh group signing we have hosted, and it is shaping up to be the biggest yet with 88 authors signing.

The list of signing authors is available here: http://australianromancereaders.wordpress.com/2014/03/17/book-signing-event-in-sydney/

The event will be open to the public, with an entry fee of $20 – or pre-purchase your tickets online for just $15. Entry will also include the opportunity to score some free books, plus the chance to win one of several prize baskets.

Remember – if you are an RWA delegate entry to the signing is NOT included in your RWA registration fee.

Buy your ticket here: http://www.trybooking.com/76424

Newbies!

We love Newbies and want to make sure your first conference is welcoming and inclusive. If you are feeling nervous and don’t know what to expect our First Timers Liaison, Donna Gallagher is here to help donnag63@iinet.net.au For everyone else, please make all newbies welcome.

If at any time during the conference you face any issues or queries, please feel free to approach the conference committee or volunteers, and we’ll work to resolve the issue.

Aspire On Line

Seeking expressions of interest from established authors in the romance genre to assist with writing course material and tutoring student assessments.

Rebecca Timmis is the Creative Manager of a new online education business, ASPIRE Online Courses. We are seeking expressions of interest from established authors in the romance genre to assist with writing course material and tutoring student assessments.
This is real, paid work and a great opportunity to build a profile name and get exposure as an author. We are offering flat fee or royalty-based payments for course material, and a per-assessment fee for tutors.
Our online team is creating a dynamic website and we will be investing heavily in online and offline marketing strategies.
I am a writer for children and young adults and have seen so many aspiring writers try and take on the world of self-publishing without first learning the craft of writing. I am passionate about education and want to establish a team that will bring the best out of our students.
If you would like to apply or wish to share this opportunity with a qualified colleague, please visit ASPIRE online courses and complete an application form at http://aspireonlinecourses.com.au/eoi/course-material.php

 

Romancing the Festival

Byron Bay Writers Festival will reveal the realities of writing romance with multi-published and award-winning authors Amy Andrews and Jennifer St George in discussion AmyAndrews_HOFAHwith, and at the mercy of, local celebrity comedian Mandy Nolan, says Festival Director, Edwina Johnson.
Chairing the session Be Still My Beating Heart: Writing Romance, Nolan will explore the world of romance writing and discuss what it’s like to be a contemporary romance author.

Be Still My Beating Heart: Writing Romance will be held on Festival Sunday.
Where: The Festival runs at North Byron Beach Resort from 1- 3 August with workshops commencing on 28 July.JenniferStGeorge_The-Love-Deception-Love

For more Festival information or to purchase tickets visit byronbaywritersfestival.com or call 1300 368 552.

For further information or interviews contact: Jennifer St George, m: 0418 134 543, e: publicity@nrwc.org.au

Book Expo Australia

Where Books Come Alive – Books for everyone and all genres.

When: 30 – 31 August 2014

Where: Exhibition Hall 5, Sydney Showground, Sydney Olympic Park, NSW 2127

FMI: www.bookexpoaustralia.com

Times
From 9:00am for Teachers and librarians
From 10:00am for General Public
Close at 5:30 pm Saturday and Sunday

Tickets are Now On Sale!

$5.00 – Teachers and Librarians (proof of employment may be requested)
$20 – Family ticket (2 adults and 2 YA)
$8.50 – Adult
$5.00 – Children(YA) over 12 to 18
Free – Children 12 and under (proof of age may be requested)

Romancing the Pagebeing_jade_COVER_HI_res small

Contrary to popular belief, a good romance is not as simple as falling in love. Writing good quality romance requires creativity, innovation, skill and well-formed characters embroiled in believable conflict.
Explore the diversity of the genre, get tips on convincing emotional connection and sex scenes, discover what readers and publishers want, develop a winning story synopsis and killer pitch, and learn about the earning opportunities the romance genre offers.
For beginners, early & emerging writers.

When: Saturdays 6, 13, 30 and 27 September, 10am–1pm
Where: Writers Victoria, 176 Little Lonsdale St, Melbourne
Tutor: Kate Belle (author The Yearning & Being Jade)

For more information and bookings: http://writersvictoria.org.au/what-s-on/event/romancing-the-page/

Online Events

RWA is looking to offer our members a series of online writers’ workshops in the second half of 2014 through its new Online Workshop List (OWL). OWL events will be hosted, facilitated and promoted by RWA on a 75:25 profit-share arrangement with the presenter (the greater amount being the presenter’s). We would like to invite interested RWA members and non-RWA members to apply to conduct a workshop online through RWA in the inaugural OWL calendar. Please download the proposal form http://www.romanceaustralia.com/p/89/OWLs, complete by May 1 2014 and email to owl@romanceaustralia.com

Classes are run from Margie Lawson’s website using on-line teaching software used by universities. Take a cyber tour before you start your class and introduce yourself.

Affordable forum-style writing classes

A double Golden Heart finalist in 2006, Julie Rowe has been writing for over ten years. Julie  teaches a variety of workshops and is the moderator of the Announce Online Classes email loop, which promotes online classes for writers. To subscribe to the Announce online Classes email loop, send an email to: Announceonlinewritingclasses-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

Writers Festivals 2014

The Mildura Writers’ Festival brings together some of Australia’s best writers in an intimate, winter program of workshops, lectures and discussion forums.

When: July 17–20

Early Bird Tickets for Byron Bay Writers Festival are on sale. Workshops commencing on 28 July. The Early Bird tickets are only on sale until the full program is announced on 6 June, so now is the time to pick up a discounted Festival pass. For more Festival information or to purchase Early Bird tickets visit byronbaywritersfestival.com.au or call 1300 368 552.

When: August 1–3

Melbourne Writers Festival (MWF) is Melbourne’s annual, two-week celebration for writers, readers and thinkers. Each year in August, the Festival celebrates the talent and ideas of hundreds of writers from Australia and around the world, through a vibrant program of storytelling, conversation and discussion, intellectual debate, educational programs, live performance, music and art events. The Festival includes events for people of all ages and more than a quarter of the program is free. Their highly regarded Schools’ Program attracts more than 15,000 students.

When: August 21–31

Details to be provided as soon as they become available.

When: September 3–7

Cruisin’ with RWA

We love celebrating success. Our members are encouraged to send in their New Release news for publishing in Hearts Talk and the New Releases blog. Don’t miss the deadline! Send in your new releases by the 8th of every month to: newreleases@romanceaustralia.com htgoodnews@romanceaustralia.com Of course, the Cruisin’ Crew don’t want to miss out on the celebrations, so drop Clint and Enrico an email with your blogs, new contract, first sale, new cover or release news at cruisin@romanceaustralia.com. Don’t forget to come back on Sunday for a list of exciting writing-related events delivered by our members.

Member News

Susanne is exciting to announce the release of Engaging the Enemy on August 1 from Escape Publishing

is looking forward to a new book coming out in August. MISTRESS OF GREYLADIES is the second in the series, set during and after WWI, in a haunted manor house in Wiltshire. The publisher has done a gorgeous cover. Take a peek.

Has signed a contract with Etopia Press for her next erotic romance called PICTURE PERFECT.
Her hot firefighter novella, ALL FIRED UP, was a runner up in the erotic romance category in the NERFAs – that’s National Excellence in Romance Fiction Awards, run by a chapter of the Rom Writers America – First Coast Romance Writers. Her fellow runner up was Aussie author Donna Gallagher.

Loretta’s new novel, THE MAXWELL SISTERS, is set in the vineyards of Margaret River, WA and will be on the shelves in January 2015.

RWA Blog

July 27 – Event Announcements9780857991782

July 28 – Author Group Spotlight on The Naughty Ninjas

July 30 – Author Spotlight and Giveaway on RUBY Finalist and LWA Nominee, Juanita Kees

July 31 – Cruisin with RWA

Cruisin’ Member Blogs

Are you an RWA Member? Share a link and a short blurb here each week by emailing the details to us at: cruisin@romanceaustralia.com.

July 26 – Serialised novels and collaboration: Tamara Thorne and Alistair Cross talk about what it’s like not only to serialise a novel but to do so collaboratively.

As the release of Engaging the Enemy approaches, Susanne’s blog tour takes off.
July 26Alexa Bravo
July 29Kerrie Paterson and Passions
July 29Two Heroes with Susanne Bellamy and Juanita Kees
July 30JM Bray 

After something hot and dishy? You can have both on Friday Feast thanks to romance author Christina Phillips. Not only will she get things sizzling with her latest sexy highlander release, Her Vengeful Scot, she’ll warm you even further with her Hunter Style Chicken recipe. Plus you could win your own super hot Scot by sharing your favourite casserole dish. Steamy!

On the Melbourne Romance Writers’ Build blog we have Jess Langhorne sharing her thoughts on inspiration and creativity.

to celebrate the upcoming September release of DRIVING IN NEUTRAL (a love story about claustrophobia), Sandra is running a blog series titled 75 Days of Phobias featuring many RWA members and romance authors.

Over the last 34 days guests included, RWA members Jenny Schwartz, Lisa Barry, Rachael Johns, Ainslie Paton, Rhyll Biest, Cate Ellink. Keziah Hill, Wendy Curtis, Georgina Penney, Anna Campbell, Kylie Scott, Tracey O’Hara, JM Bray (a dude!), MA Grant, Sarah Mayberry, Sami Lee, Dana Mitchell, Laura Greaves, Lousie Forster, Elizabeth Ellen Carter, and Escape Publishing’ s Managing editor Kate Cuthbert.fear1

Coming guests include, Daniel deLorne (dude no. 2!), Roz Groves, Tina Marie Clark, Susanne Bellamy, Kendall Talbot, Ebony McKenna, Rebekah Turner, Elsa Winckler, Alison Stuart, Amy Andrews, Melanie Milburne, Sarah Belle, Fiona Lowe, Scarlett Dawn and Juanita Kees.

Each post focuses on a phobia, real or one that is real to the guest. It runs for 75 Days, right up to the 1 Sept release date for Sandra’s third novel, the rom com DRIVING IN NEUTRAL, a love story about claustrophobia.

Juliet was a guest on the ARRA blog talking about small town settings, and her Tarrin’s Bay series

Suzi Love was a guest this week and shared her passion for history.

Has a new blog post up – Magical tools for magical writing.

July 13 – Review of BET ON IT by Cheryl AdnamsAlmost_Invincible

July 18 – Review of ALMOST INVINCIBLE by Suzanne Burdon, the biography of Mary Shelley, author of Frankenstein.

July 21MENDING THE SHROUD by J M Bray

writing is like consuming chocolate

Blogs on how a recent movie experience had a profound effect on her writing

spent 10 years as a professional critic and reviewer. Find out the lessons she learned.

Enrico’s Pick Six

Submit your blog site link to cruisin@romanceaustralia.com to share with our readers. Enrico hand picks six blogs to showcase every week. Enrico’s Pick Six this week:Enrico

Monya Mary Clayton
Suzanne Brandyn
The Roses of Prose
Word Wenches
Writing up a Storm
Suzi Love

Have a great week and happy writing!

Romance Rocks Presents…

2014website-banner-with-sponsor-logo

On Professional Development Day, Thursday 7th August on Track B, Session 4, Gemma Ruddick (Rachael Ruddick) will be writing strong in an informative sessions designed to encourage healthy habits as you write.

Write Strong

Run through stretches and exercises (using only your chair) that are useful for writers who spend long hours sitting, as well as learn the considerations for general health, desk set up and furniture. Participants will run through a range of exercises and stretches that really target the areas of most concern for writers. These include exercises that improve posture, as well as flexibility in those muscles that become tight from long periods of sitting (hamstrings, lower back, etcetera). The exercises would be suitable for all age groups and health status. Gemma will also provide a handbook of exercises and stretches for them to take with them.

Your Presenter – Gemma RuddickGemma Ruddick

When I decide to do something I get it done.

What prompted you to put together this workshop for “Romance Rocks”?
Item number three of my bucket List. It is nestled in amongst some gems like ‘run a 100k ultramarathon’, ‘visit all Disney parks’, ‘get a PhD’ and ‘make my own shampoo’.

What will participants take away from this session?
My session is for everybody, regardless of physical ability. It is about giving participants the practical knowledge to make sure they are fit and ready for all those long hours spent at a desk writing. I will cover exercises and stretches that you can do sitting or standing behind your chair as well as discussing desk set up and general health considerations.
I encourage everyone not to underestimate how important it is for your body, just like your mind, to be prepared to write. We all know that athletes nowadays place considerable importance on sports psychology; well for all of us who spend a considerable amount of time in our heads we can’t neglect our bodies.
Come to my session ready to move!

Which members will benefit most from this session?
Everyone knows that spending hours a day sitting at a desk is bad for your long-term health. As writers it is virtually impossible to get around this but it is important that we all have a toolbox to manage the impacts of this sedentary profession and understand what we can do to mitigate the risks.

Anything you’re particularly looking forward to at the 2014 Romance Rocks conference in Sydney?
It has been a couple of years since I have been able to make it to the conference and I am looking forward to meeting up with everyone, particularly my fellow contest coordinators. I also am looking forward to pitching and hopefully picking up some great ideas for approaching the editing phase of the writing process.

Any advice for conference first-timers?Cover_RapidHearts
Each conference I have attended has sent me in to a writing funk afterwards. After learning so much I always want to immediately apply it all to my writing which sends me down a ‘if I’m not going to do it properly I won’t to anything at all’ rabbit hole. So my advice is to make some sort of plan about going back through your conference notes each night and after the conference and planning out practical steps to apply what you have learnt to your current work in a manageable way.

What is your latest/current/upcoming book release and where can members find out more about you?
In 2014 I am releasing Climbing Into His Arms (Rachael Ruddick) a contemporary sports romance featuring a rock climbing goddess.

 

 

 

Author Spotlight: Goldie Alexander….

Welcome to the Author Spotlight, Goldie and congratulations on the release of   “Penelope’s Ghost”. You have some 80 titles to your credit, from where do you draw inspiration to write across all those genres?

I began my writing career with commissioned books for Young Adults as part of the Dolly Romance series under the pseudonym of Gerri Lapin. These small novels taught me a lot about writing. Since then I have written in almost every genre. I must be the original Jack of All Trades. Perhaps the only genres I haven’t tackled are adult movie/TV Scripts, graphic novels(can’t draw for nuts) and erotica. Interestingly, Clan Destine Press who has just published my latest YA novel, “That Stranger Next Door” has suggested I attempt one. We’ll see…

Penelope's large_cover (3)

Do you have a favourite genre or another one you can see yourself venturing into?

I am easily bored, so I tend to drift from one genre into another. That’s why I introduce myself as ‘A Publishing Slut’ as I go from one company to another. ‘Penelope’s Romance’ was my first attempt at writing adult romance. To my utter delight it was picked up in the United States almost immediately. My ‘Mentoring Your Memoir’ was self published but it is presently my best seller. It seems everyone has a story they are dying to tell.

You’ve won many awards as well, including the Australian Society of Authors mentor program 3 times. Can you tell us about that, please?

One way or another, I have been teaching Creative Writing these last 25 years; both in traditional adult writing classes and through mentoring individual authors. These are talented people who have won this opportunity via the ASA. We all learn a lot. It’s said that when you teach, you relearn that stuff all over again.

Do you write one book at a time or have many on the go at once?

I usually concentrate on one book at a time, but often other books need another draft before they are published. And then there’s the marketing….

What would we find on your book shelf / e reader?

Don’t ask! I was in a bad traffic accident 2 years ago and in hospital and rehab for 10 weeks. Thankfully, I was brought a Kindle. I have something like 300 books on it at present because I belong to 2 book-clubs, one adult and literary, the other children’s – this includes story picture books, middle range novels and Young Adult novels. And there are many books recommended by friends or reviews I become interested in. I have friends who write wonderful books for all ages such as Hazel Edwards (we have co-written a lot together). Though she is best known for her Hippo books, look her up. You will be impressed by all she has written.

large cover

Do you think that exploration of other genres helps to strengthen writer’s craft and skill?

Anything and everything improves a writer’s skills, the most important being reading! Read what other people write. And eavesdrop on conversations. Listening in on trams, buses and trains to other people on their mobiles provides excellent fodder.

Writing a memoir is different to fiction. What are the elements of a compelling memoir?

I guess an exciting memoir depends on what kind of life the memoirist has had. I wrote about my first 30 years and stopped at that point because all the people I was nasty about were safely dead and couldn’t sue me for defamation. There is really nothing different about writing a memoir than writing anything else. All use the same techniques. This is what I try to teach aspiring memoirists.

Is writing a memoir more difficult in regards to the feeling that you are writing facts about yourself as opposed to creating a fictional character?

Unless you terribly inhibited or ashamed of yourself, it is possibly easier, though it may bring up unpleasant/unhappy memories. The trick is to see yourself as ‘a character in a novel’. I recommend that aspiring memoirists create a character dossier describing how they might appear to others.

What do you do in your spare time, (if you have any!).

You make me sound like a ‘workaholic’ which I possibly am. But as I am a bad sleeper, I rarely work at night, confining myself to sitting at the computer most mornings. At night I like to read, go to the movies, watch TV, cook and of all things knit (It’s like Greek worry beads and soothing.)

Goldie 007 copy

Could you give us a sneaky peek at one of your favourite parts of ‘Penelope’s Ghost”, please?

 

“When Lisa Harbinger takes a job as nanny to a prestigious Australian family, she gets more than she bargained for: two spoilt children, vengeful ghosts, a long-unsolved mystery and a blazing passion she and her enigmatic boss are unable to deny. Fleeing a humiliating end to a passionless marriage, Lisa Harbinger seeks refuge in a posh summer retreat on Australia’s lush South Coast. There she finds work as a nanny for two willful children on one prestigious estate. But behind Rangoon’s ivy and red brick walls lies a mystery: What really happened to the family’s beloved Penelope?

Even more mysterious is Richard Prescott. Cold and aloof by day, Lisa’s boss heats up her nights and awakens her soul. But to have a future they both must escape their pasts. Vengeful ghosts and a generations-old curse seek to bring ruin on Richard and his family. But if Lisa can find the answers, she—and her growing love—could be the one to set him free.”

       

“He fell in love with someone else,” Richard repeated thoughtfully. “Was she a friend of yours?”

It must be time to confess. What he would think of me after that, I didn’t dare consider. “Actually, she was a he. Simon fell in love with Robert and finally admitted he was gay.”

Richard’s eyebrows shot up. “Married to someone as lovely and intelligent as you? That’s almost impossible to believe.”

Lovely? Intelligent? Not knowing how to respond to these compliments I said quickly, “I think Simon always knew he was gay. Even when he married me, he was just in denial. I was too dumb to wake up to it.”

“When you did realise, how did it make you feel?”

“Angry. Miserable. Then totally stupid,” I answered. “There were so many hints, but I kept on ignoring them.” Then I dared to venture, as the atmosphere between us was definitely pulsing, “He was never interested in sex.”

His face blank, Richard turned to the next page of the book we were sharing, then another. In the pause I heard an owl hoot and the wind rustle a branch against the window.

At last he put down the book. “Never interested in sex. That mean you’re not? Let’s find out.” With this, he placed one arm around my waist and with the other hand tilted my head so I faced him. Then he carefully and delicately placed his mouth over mine.

******

Web links

Website

Blog:www

Facebook

Twitter

Buy link: Boroughs Publishing Group.

 

 

Thank you for taking part in our Author Spotlight, Goldie!

Event Announcements

Do you have an event or workshop you’d like to share? Email your event news to cruisin@romanceaustralia.com

RWA Conference 2014 – Romance Rocks!

ARRA Book-signing event, Saturday 9 August

The Australian Romance Readers Association will be hosting a book-signing event in Sydney this August. It will be held in conjunction with the Romance Writers of Australia ARRA logo_CMYKconference, and will run from 5-6 pm on Saturday 9 August at the Pullman Hotel in Olympic Park. This is the seventh group signing we have hosted, and it is shaping up to be the biggest yet with 88 authors signing.

The list of signing authors is available here: http://australianromancereaders.wordpress.com/2014/03/17/book-signing-event-in-sydney/

The event will be open to the public, with an entry fee of $20 – or pre-purchase your tickets online for just $15. Entry will also include the opportunity to score some free books, plus the chance to win one of several prize baskets.

Remember – if you are an RWA delegate entry to the signing is NOT included in your RWA registration fee.

Buy your ticket here: http://www.trybooking.com/76424

Newbies!

We love Newbies and want to make sure your first conference is welcoming and inclusive. If you are feeling nervous and don’t know what to expect our First Timers Liaison, rwa14logoedit-light-300Donna Gallagher is here to help donnag63@iinet.net.au For everyone else, please make all newbies welcome.

If at any time during the conference you face any issues or queries, please feel free to approach the conference committee or volunteers, and we’ll work to resolve the issue.

Romancing the Festival

Byron Bay Writers Festival will reveal the realities of writing romance with multi-published and award-winning authors Amy Andrews and Jennifer St George in discussion AmyAndrews_HOFAHwith, and at the mercy of, local celebrity comedian Mandy Nolan, says Festival Director, Edwina Johnson.
Chairing the session Be Still My Beating Heart: Writing Romance, Nolan will explore the world of romance writing and discuss what it’s like to be a contemporary romance author.

Be Still My Beating Heart: Writing Romance will be held on Festival Sunday.
Where: The Festival runs at North Byron Beach Resort from 1- 3 August with workshops commencing on 28 July.JenniferStGeorge_The-Love-Deception-Love

For more Festival information or to purchase tickets visit byronbaywritersfestival.com or call 1300 368 552.

For further information or interviews contact: Jennifer St George, m: 0418 134 543, e: publicity@nrwc.org.au

Book Expo Australia

Where Books Come Alive – Books for everyone and all genres.

When: 30 – 31 August 2014

Where: Exhibition Hall 5, Sydney Showground, Sydney Olympic Park, NSW 2127

FMI: www.bookexpoaustralia.com

Times
From 9:00am for Teachers and librarians
From 10:00am for General Public
Close at 5:30 pm Saturday and Sunday

Tickets are Now On Sale!

$5.00 – Teachers and Librarians (proof of employment may be requested)
$20 – Family ticket (2 adults and 2 YA)
$8.50 – Adult
$5.00 – Children(YA) over 12 to 18
Free – Children 12 and under (proof of age may be requested)

Romancing the Pagebeing_jade_COVER_HI_res small

Contrary to popular belief, a good romance is not as simple as falling in love. Writing good quality romance requires creativity, innovation, skill and well-formed characters embroiled in believable conflict.
Explore the diversity of the genre, get tips on convincing emotional connection and sex scenes, discover what readers and publishers want, develop a winning story synopsis and killer pitch, and learn about the earning opportunities the romance genre offers.
For beginners, early & emerging writers.

When: Saturdays 6, 13, 30 and 27 September, 10am–1pm
Where: Writers Victoria, 176 Little Lonsdale St, Melbourne
Tutor: Kate Belle (author The Yearning & Being Jade)

For more information and bookings: http://writersvictoria.org.au/what-s-on/event/romancing-the-page/

Online Events

RWA is looking to offer our members a series of online writers’ workshops in the second half of 2014 through its new Online Workshop List (OWL). OWL events will be hosted, facilitated and promoted by RWA on a 75:25 profit-share arrangement with the presenter (the greater amount being the presenter’s). We would like to invite interested RWA members and non-RWA members to apply to conduct a workshop online through RWA in the inaugural OWL calendar. Please download the proposal form http://www.romanceaustralia.com/p/89/OWLs, complete by May 1 2014 and email to owl@romanceaustralia.com

Classes are run from Margie Lawson’s website using on-line teaching software used by universities. Take a cyber tour before you start your class and introduce yourself.

Affordable forum-style writing classes

A double Golden Heart finalist in 2006, Julie Rowe has been writing for over ten years. Julie  teaches a variety of workshops and is the moderator of the Announce Online Classes email loop, which promotes online classes for writers. To subscribe to the Announce online Classes email loop, send an email to: Announceonlinewritingclasses-subscribe@yahoogroups.com

Writers Festivals 2014

The Mildura Writers’ Festival brings together some of Australia’s best writers in an intimate, winter program of workshops, lectures and discussion forums.

When: July 17–20

Early Bird Tickets for Byron Bay Writers Festival are on sale. Workshops commencing on 28 July. The Early Bird tickets are only on sale until the full program is announced on 6 June, so now is the time to pick up a discounted Festival pass. For more Festival information or to purchase Early Bird tickets visit byronbaywritersfestival.com.au or call 1300 368 552.

When: August 1–3

Melbourne Writers Festival (MWF) is Melbourne’s annual, two-week celebration for writers, readers and thinkers. Each year in August, the Festival celebrates the talent and ideas of hundreds of writers from Australia and around the world, through a vibrant program of storytelling, conversation and discussion, intellectual debate, educational programs, live performance, music and art events. The Festival includes events for people of all ages and more than a quarter of the program is free. Their highly regarded Schools’ Program attracts more than 15,000 students.

When: August 21–31

Details to be provided as soon as they become available.

When: September 3–7

Cruisin’ with RWA

We love celebrating success. Our members are encouraged to send in their New Release news for publishing in Hearts Talk and the New Releases blog. Don’t miss the deadline! Send in your new releases by the 8th of every month to: newreleases@romanceaustralia.com htgoodnews@romanceaustralia.com Of course, the Cruisin’ Crew don’t want to miss out on the celebrations, so drop Clint and Enrico an email with your blogs, new contract, first sale, new cover or release news at cruisin@romanceaustralia.com. Don’t forget to come back on Sunday for a list of exciting writing-related events delivered by our members.

Member News

Has been contracted for a three book print series by Pan Macmillan Australia. KAKADU SUNSET, Book 1 of the Porter Sisters series should be available in 2015.
This romantic suspense trilogy is about three sisters from rural Australia who overcome adversity in different circumstances. Set in the outback, in the tropics and on the coastal rain forest fringe.

Invites you to view the cover and storyline of SAVING SHELBY SUMMERS, her latest romance, just published by Secret Cravings Publishing.

The fifth book in the Immortal Rapture Series,  ARIELLE: IMMORTAL JOURNEY, was released on July 15.

RWA Blog

July 20 – Event AnnouncementsClint

July 22 – Author Spotlight: Goldie Alexander…

July 23 – Romance Rocks Presents…Gemma Ruddick

July 24 – Cruisin’ with RWA

Cruisin’ Member Blogs

Are you an RWA Member? Share a link and a short blurb here each week by emailing the details to us at: cruisin@romanceaustralia.com.

Romance in Exotic Places: The Attraction and Possibilities of Other Lands – Explore the potential of exotic settings this week with Susanne Bellamy.

Wrote a very serious and thoughtful post

Feeling the winter blues? Then cheer yourself up with a romantic wedding or three on Friday Feast. Award-winning Australian author Fiona Lowe is celebrating the upcoming release of her Wedding Fever trilogy with even more nuptials. An entire anthology of them! Plus there’s a delicious winter dessert to sweeten things even more. Nice!

Post on our recent workshop, Characterisation and Suspense.
Post by Tea Cooper and the wonders of using Evernote.

July 8 – Tuesday Tales with the prompt “Summer”
July 10 – Maggie Christensen BAND OF GOLD
July 13 – Sunday Snippet FRESH BEGINNINGS … another little teaser of my book which will be released early August.

Curious about a romance author’s writing space? Check out my desk – and our cats – at AusRomToday

Shared a post by writing guru Sydney Smith. What’s wrong with a passive protagonist?

Three Australian authors share their how-we-got-published stories!

Ann B Harrison was Over at Write Bytes with Keziah Hill this week. And yes, she has a messy desk!

Nicole Murphy aka Elizabeth Dunk is on Write Bytes this week. Come along and say hello!

to celebrate the upcoming September release of DRIVING IN NEUTRAL (a love story about claustrophobia), Sandra is running a blog series titled 75 Days of Phobias featuring many RWA members and romance authors.

Guest blog / promo for J L Addicoat debut novel, THE SPIRIT OF LOVE.

Guest blog / promo for Anna Hackett‘s next release, IN THE DEVIL’S NEBULA, an action, science fiction romance.

Enrico’s Pick Six

Submit your blog site link to cruisin@romanceaustralia.com to share with our readers. Enrico hand picks six blogs to showcase every week. Enrico’s Pick Six this week:Enrico

  1. Monique Wood
  2. The Pink Heart Society
  3. Whitney K-E
  4. Tima Maria
  5. Dark Side Down Under
  6. The Ecstasy Files

Have a great week and happy writing!

Romance Rocks Presents…

2014website-banner-with-sponsor-logo

On Professional Development Day, Thursday 7th August on Track B, Session 3, Susan Donovan will provide a User’s Guide to turning up the self-expressive part of the brain and turning down the impulse control part of the brain when generating ideas. 

A User’s Guide to the Creative Writer’s Brain

Understanding how to get the most out of the 2 types of creative thinking: convergent thinking (intensely focusing on a problem until the answer emerges) and divergent thinking (asking your subconscious mind targeted questions then forgetting you asked them).

Your Presenter – Susan Donovanfacebook picture Susan Donovan aka Sara Donovan (2)

I’m a wife, mother, corporate facilitator and HarperCollins author.

Have you presented sessions at previous conferences, for RWA or other organisations?
I have written and run workshops on neuroscience, communication and innovation for my corporate clients, including Novartis, Oracle and Telstra.

What prompted you to put together this workshop for “Romance Rocks”?
I utilised some of the processes I teach in my day job whenever I felt stuck or worried when writing my book (which was quite a lot – especially when writing the first draft!)
The processes were so effective and reduced my stress so much, that I wanted to share them with any of the wonderful romance writers at Romance Rocks who are interested.

What will participants take away from this session?
The take-home message is that the unconscious mind is far more powerful than the conscious mind, but it’s also very easy to block. It’s helpful to know when you’ve accidentally turned it off, how to turn it back on and how to get more out of your brain’s creative capabilities.

Will there be hands-on exercises or audience participation?COV_LoveByNumbers_CD2
There will be hands-on exercises and audience participation in this workshop.

What is the best part/aspect of conference for you?
Meeting other romance writers and having a good laugh together.

What is your latest/current/upcoming book release and where can members find out more about you?
My debut novel, Love By Numbers, a romantic comedy about love, lust and neuroscience is being published by HarperCollins digital brand, HarperImpulse in July 2014. You can find my website at www.saradonovan.com

 

 

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