How has your start to 2016 been? I have to keep reminding myself every time I write the date that we’re in a new year. But that’s pretty normal for me, it took me until about August last year to stop writing 2014 on everything.
Last weekend we were in Fremantle with the kids. We went to the Erth’s Dinosaur Exhibition at the WA Museum and I’d tell you, if you have junior palaeontologists in your house and this exhibition visits a city or town near you – take them! It was great. This is the second time Mr 6 has seen the exhibition, and the first for Mr 8. They both enjoyed it a lot.
We went to the WA Maritime Museum at Freo, which is a great modern exhibition and really worth the entry fee. Australia II is there, winged keel and all. There are tours of a submarine that you can do but you need to book. We missed the tour, but it’s something to do another time.
This holiday we used AirBnB for the accommodation. Have you heard about AirBnB? It’s a great way of finding (usually shared) accommodation. If you don’t mind being on a property where you might cross paths with your host from time to time, then it’s a great way to (usually) save some money on accommodation and often you can cater for yourselves a little more than normal – which can save on meals and eating out.
This is Christine’s, where we stayed in Freo. We’d highly recommend it and Christine was lovely.
We also visited Adventure World where our family mastered the new ride there, the Kraken! Lots of fun – we’ll be going back there a few times over the years I’m sure!
The only sad thing about our holiday was it coincided with the desolation of fires at Waroona, Yarloop and Harvey last weekend. We had to detour around the fire zones (which closed both the Forest Highway and South West Highway) to get to Perth and we could see the smoke for the entire 5 hour journey. Coming home, they opened the Forest Highway that morning and we drove through blackened trees where there wasn’t a leaf to be seen and the ground had burned everything down to nothing but sand. Some power poles were burned through which left power lines hanging in the air.
So sad. I have an Aunt at Coolup where we used to spend every Christmas Day from the time I was probably 5, through to being about 25, minus the years I was overseas. We’ve driven through Yarloop, with all its sleepy timber history. There have often been times my hubs has wanted to stop to check out some of the antiques and other shops and we always said: “we’ll do it another time…” Now I guess, there won’t be another time. I don’t think they’ll rebuild the town and even if they did, you can’t rebuild history.
In Busselton on the way home, we saw this great sign outside Barefoot Books in Fig Tree Lane. The bottom book on the list is MORE TIME AT THE BEACH, the print book which includes my story FAIRWAY TO HEAVEN. Barefoot Books sold out before Christmas so it’s nice to know they have more in stock.
Finally, on Friday night I got news that my newest book SO FAR INTO YOU is a finalist in the 2015 Australian Romance Readers Association annual awards for Best Contemporary Romance. This is a big deal! It’s also on the back of a Booktopia Australia’s Favourite Author nomination earlier in the week. I didn’t get through the Booktopia heats and I’m in a very hot category in the ARRA awards, but it’s very nice to be on a ‘list’… So I’m stoked. I get to use this cute graphic on the left for a while!
Meanwhile, Fairway To Heaven (ebook) is Kindle Monthly Deal at Amazon Australia for January. This means it is 99c for Australian readers, all month and it’s doing well on the charts, reaching No 13 during the week and No 3 in Contemporary. If you have a Kindle and you haven’t read it yet, maybe this is the time to risk it! One click it at Amazon Australia here. If your account is with Amazon US, click here.
I had a lovely 5-star review for Fairway from Kirsty Wenn who said “I didn’t want this book to end.” That’s always nice! I had a less than lovely 2-star review from a reader who said “Nice story but very boring”… so, it just goes to show in this writing business you have to roll with the punches and enjoy the good times when they come!
On that very zen note, I’ll leave you to your weekend!