Today, April 14th, is my birthday so I thought I’d do a birthday-themed blog post! It’s especially fitting because my debut novel, FAST FORWARD, which was released a couple of months ago, takes place mostly over one day – the main character’s birthday.
Young, hip, and gorgeous Kelli, from Fast Forward, is getting ready to celebrate her 25th birthday, but she wakes up to the birthday present of her nightmares – she’s jumped ahead to the future and is a 50 year old flabby, wrinkly, housewife, married to the nerd she used to tease in high school. Not only that, she has two grown children she doesn’t recognise, a daggy best friend, she has to give an important business presentation of which she knows nothing about, and she has no idea how to get back to her old, I mean, young life.
I’m glad to say I’ve never had a birthday as challenging or memorable as Kelli’s, but I’ve had a lot of good ones! (The photo of the chocolates on the plate was taken at a restaurant for my birthday a couple of years ago).
At my thirtieth I had a fancy dress costume party with a 70’s and 80’s theme. Guests had to come dressed as someone from either of those decades. I dressed as a psychedelic chick with straight hair parted in the middle and wore white flared pants and a multicoloured top, and my son dressed as Michael Jackson in the afro stage, complete with black shoes with white socks. A couple of my cousins around the same age as me dressed as girls from the eighties with lovely teased fringes (bangs, for my US friends), ponytails, and lovely eighties clothes and jewellery. We hired a juke-box to play music from those eras, and it was a lot of fun!
This birthday, I received a fantastic early present just a few days ago – an offer of publication from Escape Publishing for my romantic comedy novella, I DREAM OF JOHNNY! (More news on that later on). Now that’s memorable
I decided to ask a few facebook friends about their birthday memories, and here are their responses:
My best birthday memory was for one of those horrible ones with an 0 on the end. My family decided to treat me to a ‘ride on a Harley’ as I’d been rabitting on about it. I was collected from the house and driven right around the Gold Coast on this wonderful Harley motorbike, letting rip with whoops of joy as we zoomed around the roads. It was amazing. My ‘driver’ was a hoot and totally entered into the spirit of the thing, but a very good driver.
My mother was the archetypal feminist and she vetoed a series of dodgy presents from my wish lists over the years. Like the time I wanted a bride doll, and I got a Basil Brush puppet. Or the time I wanted Pretty in Pink Barbie, and got a budgie. All that changed when I was 12. I got some birthday money, and raced out to purchase Golden Dream Barbie. I brought her home, unwrapped her carefully, and discovered that I was kind of too old for Barbies by then anyway.
The weirdest thing is, 37 years later, my daughter has more Barbies than you could pack into a Barbie camper (mostly hand-me-downs from older cousins). And what does she want, more than anything in the world? A budgie. Go figure!!
I won a novel writing competition with the prize of publication.
The book was scheduled to come out a few days after my birthday but when I mentioned that the publisher managed to bring it forward so it came out on my birthday (30 March last year).
Don’t think a writer could have a better birthday present than a copy of their first published novel.
I spent my 40th birthday alone and homesick, having just moved to the UK for a few years. I took a rowdy early-morning call from friends back home while I was in the dining room of a Scarborough hotel I’m sure was the model for Fawlty Towers, with shades of Mr Bean’s holiday hotel thrown in. The elderly hotel guests were tutting over their baked beans and kippers as this hysterical Australian woman howled with laughter (and a few tears) into the phone. At least the horror of the hotel eased the horror of turning 40!
What was your most memorable birthday?
Now, I’m off to celebrate, eat some yummy food, and blow out the 25 candles on my cake (ha! I wish! Oops, you have to be careful what you wish for).
Just a quick post to let you know I’m being interviewed over at the Caribbean Accent Book Reviews blog about my inspiration for Fast Forward, the most surprising feedback I’ve gotten from the book, and what’s planned for 2013!
Plus you can win a copy of the book by clicking on the rafflecopter giveaway link at the end of the interview.
Comp drawn in less than 5 days so get in quick!
Oh, and there are virtual chocolates! ;) Read the interview here.
P.S – Stay tuned for my interview with debut author Jenn J McLeod on the blog tomorrow!
Thanks to everyone who participated in my blog tour for Fast Forward, and thanks to the amazing bloggers who hosted me on their sites!
1. $25 Amazon gift card: Shannon R who left a comment on the Ramblings From This Chick blog.
2. BONUS $25 Amazon gift card (for one lucky purchaser of Fast Forward): Caroline P.
Winners, you have been notified. Please respond to the notification email within a week to claim your prize.
If you haven’t yet got a copy of FAST FORWARD you can buy it via…
Thanks everyone – see you on the next blog tour!
WOW – what a month! It may be the shortest month of the year but I’ve enjoyed every day of February, the month my debut novel, FAST FORWARD was released into the world. It’s been both exhausting and exciting; writing guest blogs and interviews, interacting with readers, promoting on facebook and twitter, checking sales rankings, and trying to squueze in some more writing too! I managed to complete a 16,000 word novella during all the hype, which I’m pretty pleased with.
BIG thanks to all the wonderful bloggers that have hosted me on my blog tour, and to everyone who’s followed me along the blog tour and left comments on my posts and interviews, it’s been great fun! If you haven’t yet, or you’ve only made a couple of the stops, there’s still time – today is the last day of the tour and there are plenty of interesting interviews and articles to read about my writing journey, my book, my characters, my inspirations, and even which funny scene was based on personal experience!
I’d love to see you there…simply click on the below links that interest you and leave me a comment and you’ll be entered into the draw to win a $50 Amazon gift card or a $25 Amazon gift card. When it comes to ebooks, that amount can get you a LOT of great books! But you can also spend it on anything at Amazon.
Also, don’t forget if you’ve bought FAST FORWARD you can also win a bonus $25 Amazon gift card as a thank you for buying my book. Simply forward me your email receipt to fastforwardbook(at)gmail(dot)com and you’ll be in the draw!
I’ll allow a bit of time for the non-Aussies to catch up to the end of February, Australian time, and then I’ll draw the winners sometime over the next day or two, so keep an eye out on the blog, twitter and facebook and check your inbox over the weekend – it could be you!
Here are all the blogs you can leave a comment on to enter into the draw:
Juliet Madison blog - Release Day celebration post
ARRA / Australian Romance Readers Association - Release Day post
Rachael Johns blog - Do You Have The Creative Curse?
Strange Candy Reviews - From Idea to Publishing Contract in Nine Months
RWA / Romance Writers of Australia - Author Spotlight interview
Mochas, Mysteries, and More - Book spotlight & excerpt
Read In A Single Sitting - Interview/Feature
You Gotta Read - You Gotta Write, Right?
Manga Maniac Cafe - Interview
Romance Book Paradise - Time Travel in romance – it’s not only for sci-fi
Stella Ex Libris - Creating the Characters of Fast Forward
Australian Bookshelf - Motherhood in Fiction
Chick Lit Central - Valentine’s Day Interview
Sarah Belle’s blog - 5 Fun Facts About Fast Forward
Beauty & Lace - Interview
Kerrie Paterson’s blog - My TBR pile; what I’m reading
Louise Reynolds’ blog - Cooking The Books – the food in Fast Forward
Ramblings From This Chick - Opposites Attract – the romance in Fast Forward
Chick Lit Bee - Getting inspiration from movies
Susanne Bellamy’s blog - Interview
Annie Seaton’s blog - How I Became a Writer
Thanks for visiting, I’ll see you on the blogs!
Have you entered the prize draw in my blog tour yet? It’s happening all throughout February, and you could win a $50 Amazon Gift Card (to buy ANYTHING), or the runner up prize of a $25 Amazon Gift Card.
It’s easy to enter, simply comment on any of the guest posts or interviews I’m doing during my blog tour. You can see the full schedule via this link, but here’s a run down of the blogs I’ve visited this past week so you can check them out and leave a comment. Every blog you comment on counts as one entry, so comment on more to have more chances to win! And remember to share the details with your friends
- At Romance Book Paradise I talked about time travel in romance, it’s not only for sci-fi! Do you have a favourite time travel story?
- At Stella Ex Libris I talked about how I created the characters of Fast Forward. Come and share who your favourite book characters are! There’s a lot of discussion going on here.
- At the Australian Bookshelf I discussed Motherhood in Fiction.
- At Chick Lit Central I was interviewed on Valentine’s Day and even shared my first crush! *blush* – 2 copies of Fast Forward are up for grabs here too if you comment before midnight on 20th Feb US time.
- At up and coming author Sarah Belle’s blog I shared 5 Fun facts About Fast Forward. Which funny scene was based off personal experience??
- At Beauty & Lace I was interviewed about my journey to publication, and I also discuss social media for writers and what I’m working on next!
- At Kerrie Paterson’s blog I shared what’s in my Leaning Tower of To Be Read books!
- And today I’m at Louise Reynolds blog on ‘Cooking The Books’, where I discuss the futuristic food that appears in Fast Forward, as well as a few excerpts to whet your appetite
I hope to see you on the blogs!
Thanks to everyone who’s rated and reviewed the book so far, and those who’ve sent me messages telling me how much they enjoyed the book. I really appreciate it!
Here are a few reviews that have been posted:
>>Remember, if you’ve read FAST FORWARD, you could also win a bonus $25 gift card by forwarding your receipt to fastforwardbook(at)gmail(dot)com ! Good luck!
In honour of The Day Of Love I thought I’d share some romantic books with you in a unique way! Here is an impromptu poem I created using the book titles from Escape Publishing’s February releases…
Take your loved one on a few VALENTINE’S DATES or run the risk of being struck down by THE CHIEFTAIN’S CURSE.
There are HIGH STAKES on this special day and you are BOUND BY HER RING after all.
Forget about FINDING ELIZABETH or some other young floozy; stick with the woman you have ARRANGED TO LOVE.
Spoil her, love her, and maybe even give the house A BASIC RENOVATION and repaint the bedroom in THE PALER SHADE OF AUTUMN.
Life moves fast, so don’t FAST FORWARD, savour every moment and she just might organise some extra special ROOM SERVICE to thank you.
And an Escape ebook pack would be an awesome gift… just sayin’
Now, here are the gorgeous covers for the February releases, which you can read about and buy here.
Don’t forget – launching on Valentine’s Day, the Escape authors are having an Escapade – 30 authors, 1 story, 1 month. Watch the fun unfold at the Escape blog.
It’s been just over a week since my debut novel, FAST FORWARD, was released, and what an amazing week it’s been! It feels great to have a story out there, and even greater having had such great feedback from it so far! A BIG thank you to those who’ve bought it, reviewed it, told their friends about it, and messaged me to say how much they’ve enjoyed it. It really means a lot.
Have you taken part in my blog tour yet? It’s happening all throughout February, and you could win a $50 Amazon Gift Card (to buy ANYTHING), or the runner up prize of a $25 Amazon Gift Card. It’s easy to enter, simply comment on any of the guest posts or interviews I’m doing during my blog tour. You can see the full schedule via this link, but here’s a run down of the blogs I’ve visited so far so you can check them out and leave a comment. Every blog you comment on counts as one entry, so comment on more to have more chances to win! And remember to share the details with your friends
- At the ARRA blog I share the blurb for Fast Forward and tell you a bit about my inspiration.
- At Rachael Johns’ blog I talk about The Creative Curse, and share photos of celebrity drawings I did when I was a teenager.
- At Strange Candy Reviews I share how I went from idea to publishing contract in nine months.
- At the RWA blog I’m being interviewed under the Author Spotlight and sharing a brief excerpt.
- At Mochas, Mysteries, & More I’m sharing an excerpt involving a dangerous piece of support underwear!
- At Read in a Single Sitting, Stephanie Campisi wrote up a fantastic feature article based on my interview which is all about The Art of the Do-Over Novel. I also discuss why I opted for digital publication.
- At You Gotta Read I talk about why I’ve Gotta Write, and also share my writing process.
- And at Manga Maniac Cafe I’m being asked some interesting interview questions such as how I came up with the idea and the characters, what my character’s theme song would be, and what book turned me onto reading.
On Monday 11th Feb I’ll be at Romance Book Paradise discussing time travel in romance, so keep an eye out for that one!
Also, you could win a bonus $25 gift card when you purchase Fast Forward by forwarding your receipt to fastforwardbook(at)gmail(dot)com !
Okay, now for the secret…
Something has been brewing at the Escape Publishing headquarters. An idea has surfaced, thanks to innovative Ainslie Paton and the backing of the wonderful Escape team. The Escape authors, or Escape Artists as we are known, are going on an Escapade! No we’re not jetting off around the world for an adventurous holiday or African safari (although, there’s an idea), our Escapade is taking place right on the Escape blog.
To get straight to the point:
30 Authors – 1 Story – 1 Month
That’s right, 30 Escape authors are going to join forces to write one short story over one month, with each author’s contribution being posted daily on the Escape blog from Feb 14th onwards! Anything could happen, and we are just as in the dark as you are! Each contribution will follow on from the one before, so the authors only have a short amount of time to read the previous installment and write the next bit. It could be amazing, it could be a flop – but it will be entertaining! Make sure you follow the Escape blog and follow @escapepublisher on Twitter to follow the story, and visit the blog every day from Valentine’s Day onwards. My contribution will be posted on the 23rd Feb. I’m excited, and also a little scared!
See you on the Escapade!
After three years and three months of following my writing career dream, the day is finally here… my first published novel is released! *jumps around and squeals like a little girl*
FAST FORWARD is my third completed novel but my first to be published, and it’s quite appropriate because Fast Forward is about a birthday, and this day – 1st February 2013 – is kind of like the birthday of my career (a bit corny I know, but anyway).
So without any further ado, let’s celebrate!
Now, I’m posting this on the morning of the 1st, so the buy links may or may not be live yet, but they should be sometime on the 1st. If not you can always click pre-order and the ebook will download as soon as it’s gone live. No doubt I’ll be obsessively refreshing my browser every ten five two minutes!
Don’t have an e-reader? You can download the free Kindle app from Amazon for your computer, laptop, tablet, or smartphone. Or all of them! Your ebooks will be available on each of your devices as they are linked to your Amazon account.
Aspiring supermodel, Kelli Crawford seems destined to marry her hotshot boyfriend, but on her twenty-fifth birthday she wakes in the future as a fifty-year-old suburban housewife married to the now middle-aged high school nerd.
Trapped in the opposite life of the one she wanted, Kelli is forced to re-evaluate her life and discover what is really important to her. Will she overcome the hilarious and heartbreaking challenges presented to her and get back to the body of her younger self? Or will she be stuck in the nightmare of hot flushes, demanding children, raunchy advances from her husband and hideous support underwear forever?
To go in the draw for a $25 Amazon gift card, forward your purchase receipt email to fastforwardbook (at) gmail (dot) com – replace (at) with @ and (dot) with .
To go in the draw for a $50 Amazon gift card or the runner up prize of a $25 gift card, leave a comment on this post telling me what year in the future you’d like to travel to if you could. You’ll get more entries into the draw if you also leave comments at other blogs I’m visiting during my February blog tour. A listing of the blogs and dates I’ll be there are here. Winners drawn 1st March.
Good luck in the draw, and thanks for your support! I hope you enjoy reading FAST FORWARD.
I’ve featured various quotes at the beginning of chapters in my upcoming novel, FAST FORWARD. All of them relate to the themes in the book; ageing, beauty, birthdays, family, and following your dreams. Some are funny, some are heartfelt, and here is one of them:
If you have a daughter, has this happened to you? Have you ever heard your daughter say something and thought, ‘Wow. She’s a mini me.’?
…By the way, only one week and four days until Fast Forward is released! You can see the details of my upcoming blog tour and grand prize giveaway here.