Hi, and thanks for taking a peek at my blog! I’m a writer based in the Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia. I’m married with a husband (obviously!), two adult daughters, a stepson aged 11, a Chihuahua/Fox Terrier cross called Winnie (who believes she is a Great Dane) and three green tree frogs. 🙂 I’ve lived all over Australia including Melbourne, Grafton, Alice Springs and Adelaide.
Writing is my passion and my dream – but sometimes (all the time!) I need a bit of a prod in the backside to get going, as life has a nasty habit of getting in the way! I love fantasy and mystery, so that’s what I write. Some of my favourite mystery/fantasy adult authors are Janet Evanovich, Sue Grafton, and Charlaine Harris. I also love the “Wicked” trilogy by Gregory Maguire. Much of my bookshelf space is taken up by young adult fiction though – not just the obvious ones like JK Rowling (who doesn’t love Harry?) but also Eoin Colfer (Artemis Fowl), Cornelia Funke (Inkheart – books are heaps better than the movie), Diana Wynne-Jones (Howl’s Moving Castle) and my absolute favourite, Phillip Reeve (Mortal Engines). I also love the classics – CS Lewis (Narnia), JRR Tolkien (The Lord of the Rings), Mary Norton (The Borrowers – again, don’t even bother with the American movie version – read the books – they’re brilliant). KM Peyton is also fantastic, and Leon Garfield. There are so many! And every week I discover someone new.
Sigh. I wonder if there’s room for me???
I’m a member of the Gold Coast Writers’ Association, Queensland Writers Centre and Sisters in Crime, and each of those groups offers me something different. I have made some wonderful friends through the GCWA, and the QWC produces a brilliant monthly magazine which is always full of useful information. Sisters in Crime conducts the yearly Scarlet Stiletto Awards, which I try to enter as often as I can. There are lots of categories and decent prizes. Not to mention the prestige of winning the Scarlet Stiletto statuette!! In 2007, I completed a Diploma in Professional Writing (Crime, Mystery & Suspense Writing), which taught me a lot. Hopefully, I am putting what I’ve learned to good use! I will always be grateful to my tutor, Marg McAlister, who was always encouraging and supportive and gave me hope that I was publishable… She runs an excellent website called “Writing4Success” – see my writing links and have a squiz. It’s well worth it.
In November 2012, I was a “winning” NaNoWriMo participant, completing a 50,000-word novel in less than 30 days. Its working title was “Coming Home”, but I’ve renamed it “Shadow of a Soldier”. I have self-published it through Createspace (a surprisingly easy process!) and it is now available as a paperback on Amazon and as a Kindle e-book. Very exciting! It would be awesome if you’d buy a copy and support this struggling writer!
I successfully completed NaNoWriMo again in 2013, and that novel, “The Players”, is currently being edited. It’s set in the early 1900’s in Australia during the silent movie era. During Camp NaNoWriMo (April 2014) I finished drafting a comic murder mystery novel (think Janet Evanovich – hopefully) called “Death Can Be Terminal”, which features a bio hazard cleaner as the protagonist. In July 2014, during the second round of Camp NaNoWriMo, I completed the first draft of my YA fantasy novel, “The Misplaced Bushranger”. That novel features the teenage witch from my novella, “Black Cats, Bullies and Boils”, (“Fan-Tas-Tic-Al Tales” 2009) who is just a little more grown up (17 instead of 13). I was also a “winner” during NaNoWriMo 2014 when I completed another young adult fantasy novel set during Colonial times in Australia, and during NaNoWriMo 2015, I wrote a sequel to “The Misplaced Bushranger”. That brings my grand total of novels to be edited to five! 2016 is the year I’ve promised myself that I will get this done and publish those novels! (For sneak peeks of my work and other bits and pieces, please see my website – http://katerussell-writer.weebly.com/).
I’ve also written several short stories and poems, some with The Ten Penners, and others for a work newsletter some years ago, and still others for various competitions. I won a runner up prize in a Mills & Boon short story competition many years ago, and although I wouldn’t call myself a romance writer, love does seem to make a guest appearance in all my novels!
Enjoy my blog, and please come again.
Cheers, Kate 🙂