Friday, 20 January 2017

Hello 2017

Hello and welcome to 2017

Stuart and I had a bit of an adventure over the Christmas season. We started out in Rome - of course - where I went back to work at Gatti di Roma for a short time.

From there we went to Copenhagen where we over indulged in the truly magnificent pastries they make. We'd never been to Denmark before so it was quite special to go somewhere new.

From Copenhagen we went to Vienna where we got ourselves a map of the Christmas markets and did a tour.

So in summary, we drank copious amounts of gluhwein and ate copious amounts of Christmas treats like langos, baumkuchen. We also put on copious amounts of weight - probably a couple of kilos each which we're now working off a the gym.

Europe at Christmas time is spectacular. It's freezing cold - of course! But that's part of the fun for we Australians as we rug up and indulge in all the food and mulled wine we can.

And then there are the lights. Oh wow! Europeans know how to do Christmas in a way that we Aussies, sweltering beneath the blazing sun, will never be able to replicate.

Food, gluhwein and lights
Christmas market - Vienna
The plan was to end up in Otley, the town in which I set my books Torn and Inviolate. Otley is a quiet market village in West Yorkshire. It's surrounded by lovely rolling dales and rocky outcrops. No wonder it was so inspirational when I lived there back in my twenties.

We go back regularly to visit and one day ... who knows. Perhaps we'll live there again. But for now, we make do with images like these ... I took this pic from the living room of the apartment we stayed in.

Romantic historical village
Christmas - Otley, West Yorkshire
Of course I wrote. I wrote everyday and it was so enjoyable!

So, now we're back home and awaiting the completion of our new house. Fingers crossed, we'll be in by the end of February.

In the meantime, I have a few projects on. Firstly a complete overhaul of my website, and secondly, I'll be looking at ways I can help other people improve their writing.

My latest book has been completed in a rather different way from Torn and Inviolate. For this one, I teamed up with a fellow writer who was at a similar stage with her book and we workshopped one-another's books.

Maggie Christensen is a terrific writer - you would have seen Maggie's contribution to this page a couple of months ago. Well, Maggie and I worked through each other's books and declared them ready to go.

With luck, the final installment in the Broughton series will be out this year!

Also this year, I'll be bringing you more writing information, competitions, tips and hints along with details about new opportunities - more to come on this!

I'll also be discussing some of the better books I read.

A couple more things before I sign off, Torn is now on sale at Kobo for only $4.99 (Aus) so it's a great chance to try it and see what you think.

I have decided to publish Counterpoint with an online publisher which will make it available to everyone forever. The best bit - it will be FREE. I'm excited about this because I only ever wanted people to enjoy it. I'll give you an update when it's ready so watch this space!

The image below is the lounge room at the Black Horse Hotel in Otley. This hotel is mentioned quite often in Counterpoint. It's a beautiful old pub - as you can see - and we've visited many times in the past. Hopefully many more in the future too!

Historical pub in Yorkshire.
The Black Horse Hotel - Otley

Happy New Year!

See you in 14

Ps. From an old Kiss fan - happy birthday Paul Stanley! :-)

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