You know that feeling you get when you finally do something you’ve been putting off for, like, years?
I got that feeling!
Today I made my two self-published stories, Who Killed The Bride? and Who Killed The Movie Star?available as ebooks in the Amazon Kindle store, and through Kindle Unlimited.
It only took me since July 2016 to get my arse into gear!
The two stories involve the mad-cap adventures of Cally and Sienna in beautiful Butterfly House, as they try to establish their new tourism business hosting murder mysteries in the town of Cowaramup (incidentally – my home town) in South West Australia.
The books have always been available in print, and if you’d still like your copy in print please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will sort that out. Each book costs $18.95 each including postage anywhere in Australia.
After 6 years of cyber friendship, I met in person the writerly woman who was my first Facebook friend, and has always been an amazing supporter of my writing career, Jenn J McLeod; with her partner in all things writing and life, Jeannette – also known in official circles as the ‘J’ in Jenn J McLeod.
When I first ‘cyber met’ Jenn, it was through common links and goals in our writing, and a very similar sense of humour, plus I think a love of red wine clinched the deal…
We’ve been writing mates since, but our paths haven’t crossed in person in all this time, and today I got to meet the ‘nomadic novelist’ on her journey to WA. Jenn is here for several special events, including being writer in residence at Serenity Press’s upcoming Writing Retreat near Busselton in October, plus a signing author at West Coast Fiction Festival in Perth (where I’ll be too) on November 3. She’s also visiting various libraries across the South West, and whenever she’s resting, she’ll be writing in her mobile home, affectionately known as ‘Myrtle, the Turtle.’
So, to throw in a few twists to my day (because let’s face it, what is a typical Lily Malone day without twists??) it was my eldest boy’s 11th birthday today, and the day began with a visit to the dentist to repair a chipped front tooth!
Meanwhile, Jenn and Jeannette were traversing the town of Cowaramup, waiting for me to let them know I was back from said dentist visit before we could hook up. On the way back through town to deliver my newly-re-toothed boy to school, I spied the famous #WriteRoundOz vehicle, with the even more famous magnetic strips on the side… my first clue that the Double JJs were officially in town…
I decided to stalk them and see if I could track them down in Cowtown… (for those not in the know, Cowaramup is the size of… well, kind of a postage stamp. My task should not prove too difficult!)
My first stop was the post office, where I got my second official clue. Mail delivered to my address on behalf of Jenn J McLeod… Yes, she is bookish royalty, quite obviously, we all wait on her hand and foot. (Any more parcels to come, my-Lady?)
Next thing there are hoots and hollers across the highway, and lo and behold, I see these two ladies waving at me!
Well, much hilarity and a good few hours of coffee, toasted sandwiches, muffins (yes I baked!!) and conversation ensued… plus more photographs and a visit to Ellensbrook to see the sea.
Tomorrow, it happens to be Jenn J McLeod’s birthday! Yes, the day after my son’s, which feels doubly kismet & special. We have the day planned, and poor Jenn and Jeannette get the dubious honour of being invited to dinner with me, whereby I will set my mad baking skills to work for her! Bwahahahaa…
Lovely to see you, Jenn J & Jeannette. Welcome to Cowaramup and WA. I hope your visit is every bit of extra special awesome!
Sharing a quick video about my hometown – Cowaramup in the south west of Western Australia.
Earlier this year I was involved with the group that put together an entry submission for Cowaramup to be named the ‘Legendairy Capital of Australia.’
After lots of consultation with local dairy farmers and representatives of various local groups and committees, I put fingers to keyboard to help write our town’s submission.
In autumn this year, we got the great news that Cowaramup had won the title of West Australian ‘dairy capital’, and would now go on to represent WA in the national competition with the winner announced later this year.
The State nomination and winner’s announcement all happened right before the Deja-Moo 2017 (a huge weekend of cow-themed fun in Cowaramup), and the team from Dairy Australia came to visit our town during the mid-year school holidays and festival. I can only imagine what those Dairy Australia representatives must have thought – landing in the midst of a cold winter weekend of Cow Onesie frenzy!
I feel so chuffed to have written a book set in Cowaramup, involving the increasingly famous Cowaramup Cows. One of the speakers in the video is Kerry Sibly (you see him wearing the cow horns in his cow onesie chatting during the vid); Kerry designed the awesome book cover for Butterfly House Book 1, Who Killed The Bride?
I had the huge pleasure last night to join two talented Cowaramup artists, painter Kerry Sibly and sculptor Alan Meyburgh, at the launch of Kerry and Alan’s exhibition for this year’s Open Studios.
My connection to this clever and versatile pair is that Kerry illustrated and designed my Butterfly House ‘Who Killed The Bride‘ book cover… plus he lives in the same street as me, and in our street we’re always up for a party. 🙂
About 80 people came along to the launch, held at Kerry and Wendy Sibly’s house. The house itself made an amazing frame for an art exhibition. At different times Kerry and Wendy’s home has been in the lens of programs such as ‘Grand Design’; and on the radars of some of Australia’s house and lifestyle magazines. It’s an incredibly special place, filled with personal traits, tricks and treats.
Kerry and Alan made a combined sculpture that they offered as a prize on their launch night. Alan sculpted the heart, and Kerry (in his words) “added the rusty barbed wire to it”.
We were thrilled to have the sponsorship of Stella Bella Wines and the Margaret River Dairy Company for our launch. There’s nothing like viewing art, sculpture, and books whilst enjoying classic Margaret River wine and cheese!
The Margaret River Region Open Studios (MRROS) is now in its fourth year, involving artists of all pursuits from Busselton to Augusta who open their studio/shop/shed or workplace to visitors where people can peruse and buy artworks, but also talk to the artist and see them at work.
Over the next few weeks, I’m relocating my ‘writing room’ across to the Sibly’s house for several mornings a week, and I’d love to see you for a cuppa and perhaps to chat all things books, writing, and reading…
If you are in or around the Margaret River region, please look for the Open Studio signs everywhere, or visit www.mrros.com.au to see what’s on offer.
Kerry and Alan’s exhibition is No. 51 in the Guide. They’re open every day from 10am to 4pm, including ANZAC day.
Q: How much fun can an author (moi), a cover designer (Kerry Sibly), two giftshop owners (Kerry & Wendy Sibly), a photographer (the very patient James Bunting), a journalist (Nicky Lefebvre from The Augusta-Margaret River Mail), and a Cowaramup cow have during a photo shoot?
A: Too much fun. Will Cowaramup ever be the same again…?
You can get your personally signed print copy of Who Killed The Bride, Butterfly House Book 1 for $18.95 by emailing me email@example.com or if you’re in the South West, call into Mukau Giftware and Gallery in Cowaramup or Barefoot Books in Fig Tree Lane, Busselton.
I wrote about the Cowaramup Cows here. I have a new book coming out soon and it is set in my hometown of Cowaramup, where there is a herd of about 40 life-size fibreglass cows.
I said in that post something like: not everybody likes the cows, but the cows have been a boon for local businesses in the area, bringing people to our town, and giving them a reason to stop in Cowaramup instead of bypassing us for the bigger tourist towns north and south.
Saturday morning, this happened, and it makes me angry and sad.
When these pictures were posted in the Cowaramup Community Facebook page, almost to a comment there was condemnation of the dickheads who would do this sort of thing. I hate that it feels like incidents of vandalism are growing in this part of the world that’s always felt somehow insulated and innocent of what might seem to be ‘city things.’
It’s easy to think that it is done by ‘kids’ blowing off steam, or ‘the youth of today’. That’s not fair to all the great kids that I know in this community.
Not long ago a memorial was vandalised in Gracetown. It was commemorating a surfer who had been killed in a shark attack some years ago. ‘Kids’ got blamed for that one too.
Who knows if it’s young people or old? Locals or visitors? Trump-lovers or Trump-haters? Whoever did it is a dickhead. Pure and simple.
The cows in Cowaramup are not everybody’s cup of tea. Leave them alone if they’re not your thing. Boycott deja-Moo and the Christmas Fair and any other cow thing. Don’t take your visitors to any park to see the cows.
In my new book, part of the story involves a mystery surrounding the theft of one of the Cowaramup calves. My book is fiction, but I wrote it after a calf was stolen from outside a local shop last year. That time, the calf was taken, not destroyed, and eventually the community got the calf back.
Seeing the photographs of the cows destroyed is somehow worse. Like the surfer’s plaque at Gracetown. It’s malicious. It’s disrespectful. It’s anti-social. It’s dumb.
And I suspect whoever desecrated the surfer’s memorial, or the calf in the park knows this, and doesn’t care.