Archive for the ‘Happy New Year’ Category

The lead up to the New year was full of good intentions. I was going to set goals. I was going to do an overview of my year. I was going to send a newsletter and going to write and all of that is in the land of good intentions and no action.

I’m writing this blog post now because I’m waiting for the household to get ready to go to Ikea and Costco and it’s past midday. All I’ve achieved this morning is picking apricots so that I can make jam before the birds eat them. We haven’t even gotten around to netting the tree. I’m a little tired myself as I did a road trip yesterday to Culcairn to visit my friend and her family. Waves to Sharyn. However, with EV charging and wait times I did not get home until 9 pm and I left home around 8 am. However, I did get to listen to most of Solace House by Joy Ells and read by my favourite reader, Richard Armitage. It’s a new crime novel with Jackman and Evans, set in the Fens of Lincolnshire, where one of my great, great, great, great grandparents originated.

My Phd is done. I’m now Dr Donna! I am graduating in person I think in March but the university couldn’t tell me so it could be April. I’m heading back to my day job in February so I’m conscious I have less than a month left of my half pay leave. I’ve been on fostercare leave and I needed every day of it. I’m transition to normal leave next week. Fostering a teenager with issues has been hard but we love her heaps.

I have print copies of Awakening finally. In my original order for print copies I accidentally ordered copies of Argenterra. Lesson is don’t order books when distracted or without glasses. I need to order more for the signing in ARRA Sydney and Melbourne. That’s coming up fast. I need to book flights and high teas etc. Julia Quinn of Bridgerton fame will be a guest at the Australian Romance Readers Association Romantic Rendezvous. Link. I’m signing in Sydney and Melbourne. This also means I’ll be selling books! I have two new books out. Awakening, SF romance and The Changeling Curse, the sequel to The Sorcerer’s Spell under Dani Kristoff. I’m really looking forward to hanging out with the romance gang as they are so welcoming.

Other than printout the structural edit copies for the Phd novel, Sihem, I have not touched it and that’s quite important on my to list. I also need to make my exegesis available to survey participants, which is also high on the to do list. I also need to research publishers to put in a proposal to publish my romance reader and writer data so that it is more accessible. Gah!

So to finish off I’m happy to report that Maeve, the kitten, is getting on with the huge Gin our cranky old man cat. Matthew sent me this picture yesterday. He found them like this when he got home from the mall.

I hope you are all enjoying your January and finding the time for repose or fun. I need to get ready for Mabel’s birthday. My grandbaby turns 4 today and I’ve been tasked with cake making.

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Happy New year! 2015 is done and 2016 is here. Yipee!

2015 was a tough year for me on many fronts. My mother passed away on the 4th of January and then my health was a bit up and down. (Looks like it’s thyroid issues). Work became a bit of struggle and then I injured myself, resulting in a diagnosis of some thoracic disc protrusions. That diagnosis sent me on a downer. Not only was it (is it) painful it curtailed my writing in a big way. The bigger thing that diagnosis it did was make me look at my life at what I was doing with my work and what I wanted to do with my productive time. You see, I can only see this arthritic spine of mine getting worse over time and so doing things like craft, writing  etc becomes more precious to me. I love making things. It’s my life blood.

I lost my friend Sonia to scleroderma and other close friends have had some health scares. My eldest son moved to China for work. He loves it. I miss him.

On the bright side, and there is one (or many), I’m generally healthy, so is my partner, Matthew, my children and my grandchildren.

2015 me and dweeb

Me (the Dweebette) and Matthew (the Dweeb!)

So apart from some chronic pain I’m really happy on in the inside. That makes a big difference. We love our house. Our deck got built and it’s amazing.

deck 2015

The long awaited deck and a peak at the views.

I also got to see some Koalas when I took some visiting Indonesians out to Tidbinbilla.

2015 koala

As I wasn’t able to write, I had to do other things to keep me sane so I did some craft-weaving, sewing and millinery. I try to use a timer to alternate through different things so I don’t injure myself. Millinery can be done standing up. I also discovered Audible and have been listening to some fab books. I’m going to continue that.

I also did a few cakes. Like this one for my daughter. Totero and this one for my boss’s farewell, a vintage Kombi.

So what is in store for me in 2016? As previously mentioned on this blog, I am commencing candidature for a higher research degree (PHD). That starts in February. I have lots of reading to do and some papers to write. The topic is Feminism in Popular Romance.

I’ve got a bit of organising to do to get ready for that. I need to clear the decks of some writing tasks. The reason I’ve taken January off work. I also need to do some practical things like reorganise my office in readiness for study. I wouldn’t call it organised now…but that needs to be improved. I had a message from my daughter. Mum: junk attracts junk. I get the message.

I’m hoping some books will also come out in 2016. I may experiment with self-publishing. Sometimes it can take too long to flog a book and it gets dated. In that case, I may as well get it out there and experiment.

Appearances wise, I’m hoping to get to Contact in Brisbane over Easter and to the Romance Writers of Australia conference in Adelaide later in the year. I’m very tempted by Supanova!

With regards to hats, I’m working on doing more of those and setting up a website to sell them. Bring on the steampunk hats!

I’ll be finishing up on the day job in the first part of the year. Losing the good income is a scary prospect, but you know I’m going to take the leap and see where it gets me.

Happy New year! Hopefully you will pop back again.

2015 hat by cat

Me in one of my hats. Photo by Cat Sparks.

Oh and Dragon Wine Part 1 is on promotion. It’s free in ebook. I’m also doing a blog tour and a give away of a hard copy. To be in the draw to win a print copy of Shatterwing leave a comment.


Dragon Wine Series


Dragon wine could save them. Or bring about their destruction.

Since the moon shattered, the once peaceful and plentiful world has become a desolate wasteland. Factions fight for ownership of the remaining resources as pieces of the broken moon rain down, bringing chaos, destruction and death.

The most precious of these resources is dragon wine – a life-giving drink made from the essence of dragons. But the making of the wine is perilous and so is undertaken by prisoners. Perhaps even more dangerous than the wine production is the Inspector, the sadistic ruler of the prison vineyard who plans to use the precious drink to rule the world.

There are only two people that stand in his way. Brill, a young royal rebel who seeks to bring about revolution, and Salinda, the prison’s best vintner and possessor of a powerful and ancient gift that she is only beginning to understand. To stop the Inspector, Salinda must learn to harness her power so that she and Brill can escape, and stop the dragon wine from falling into the wrong hands.

Dragon Wine Book 2 :Skywatcher, the follow on book is also available in ebook and print.



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