Apparently I have Collocophobia…who knew!

BwJ_DcTIgAAu5wTI didn’t know I had a fear until lovely author, Sandra Antonelli asked me to write a blog post for her “75-Phobias” in the run-up to her September 1st release of Driving in Neutral.  It’s a love story about claustrophobia and its availalble for pre-order for the ultra-special price of 99 cents. So grab it today before it goes up to $4.99.

So back to the phobia thing. What started out as me writing a jokey post has actually made me realize I do have a not so small problem that does cause me a lot of wasted time. I have collocophobia…the fear of filing!

So please join me today over at Sandra’s blog because I’m seeking suggestions to help me work on this problem. Oh and while you’re there you can also read more about Sandra who writes quirky novels for grownups and smart asses, featuring romance heroines with wisdom and experience! 519tPieEVGL._AA278_PIkin4,BottomRight,-48,22_AA300_SH20_OU01_

 

Book Online to Save Time….Yeah, right!

save-timeAll businesses are pushing us online to order things and it’s supposed to save everyone time. Hmm, I think it saves the business time and money but it sure as heck isn’t saving me time. It’s SUCKING my time away from me in hours at a time.

Yesterday, I planned 15 minutes to firm up a few things for my up-coming ski-trip.  First off, the airlinechanged my flights and the website wouldn’t allow me to deal with it despite me completeing all this details. Then, I rang the skilodge and they insisted I book online…so I did, only their website wasn’t working and kept giving me an error message. I called them back and alerted them to it. Sigh. Only thing left to do was book the skipasses and that’s when I got into an infinite loop between agreements and the type of pass. So three phone calls later I was told, “Oh, yeah, the IT guys are working on that.”    So those fifteen minutes took three hours! 

Today, I checked the airline and they still have me on the wrong flights….I’m on hold as I write this blog.

Does anyone out there manage to book something in five minutes because if you do, please send me your top tips!

Sydney Conference; Romance Rocks 2014

IMG_0449.JPGWhat a big four days! I’m home from sunny Sydney, back to the chill of southern Victoria and dreaming of warmer days and being able to walk outside wthout wearing a coat :-) I spent Thursday through Sunday at the Romance Writers of Australia’s annual conference. Spending time with writers is always a treat because they totally understand that you have characters in your head that talk to you :-)

 

I attended the Harlequin dinner on the Thursday 10352137_301880429992009_1546999131968551872_nnight where, among others,  I sat with fellow authors Melanie Milburne & Nikki Logan and with Sam Joice from the Harlequin Australia. It was great to hear all the industry news as well as catching up with old friends and making new ones :-) The food was yummy too and there was plenty of champagne, which is my book automatically makes it a good party!

 

IMG_0430.JPGFriday, I attended James Scott Bell’s writing workshop and came back with some great questions to ask my characters. I’m hoping these questions will help me out with my current stuck scene!  Friday night was the Destiny Publishing Cocktail party. The theme was Leather and Lace and I poured myself into my great aunt’s lace dress…I wore it as a skirt… and my friend’s leather jacket. I teamed it with lacey stockings and little black boots. Nothing like a new bra to pull things together! Who knew I had a cleavage ;-)

Saturday, saw the conference start in earnest. The incredibly entertaining Cherry Adair kicked things off and reminded me it’s always good to revisit your writing goals each year. After morning tea it was my turn to present. After having nightmares that my Mac Pro wouldn’t talk to the AV, I was thrilled to see that it did and that Ryan Reynolds didn’t look green…always a good thing!  I wasn’t expecting  many people because Cherry Adair was presenting at the same time so I nearly died on the spot when James Scott Bell wandered in and sat down. I’d just come to terms with that when Sarah Wendell from Smart Bitches, Trashy Books fame strolled in, along with Malle Vallik, a VP from Harlequin Entertprises. So no pressure, right? !  Fortunately, Boy Wonder had made my presentation look fab, tying all the colors from the Wedding Fever trilogy covers into the template. Oh, and we had Ryan so of course everything was going to look great!

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That afternoon we had the ARRA book signing and I was very excited to catch sight of my Australian print copies of Saved By The Bride. They’re in B format paperback, which is medium size and they look great. They’ll be on shelf in Australia and NZ in September!

 

I had some chocolates, fridge IMG_0435.JPGmagents and postcards to give away but good writing mate Alison Stuart had cup cakes with her book cover on them! It sure helps to have a talented cake maker in the family! Don’t they look fantastic? Oh, and the book, Gather the Bones is pretty good too!

 

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My roomie, the ever-enthusiastic Jennifer Kloester was signing advaced copies of her second YA novel, The Rapunzel Dilemma. Following on from The Cinderella Moment, which is set in Paris,  I’m looking forward to this one set in London.

There were 80 authors there in total and a big thank you to ARRA who did an awesome organizational job. I’m looking forward to attending their readers’ conference in Canberra next March :-)

The awards dinner was great and I sat next to Roz Groves, who writes the blog, My Written Romance. I didn’t win the RuBY, which wasn’t a surprise to me but I am thrilled that Lucy Clark’s Harlequin Medical Romance took out the short, sweet category :-) The gorgeous Sarah Mayberry, carried off TWO awards winning the Ella and the RuBY. Congratulations to Sarah!    Escape Publishing hosted the after party and I danced for 90 minutes in high heels with no side effects. Obviously, going to the gym pays off. Guess that means I have to keep going…. :-)  As you can see I was having so much fun talking and dancing that I didn’t take any photos!

Conference also means that for three days I wear more good clothes and more makeup IMG_0429.JPGthan I do for the rest of the year combined ;-)  Today, I’m back in the warm fleeces and the ugg boots and trying to find my concentration.  I may need a nap!

A big thank you goes out to Shannon Curtis and her fabulous conference team for another  wonderful conference. Next year, the conference is in beautiful, elegant Melbourne. Can’t wait!

August Update!

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August 1st was my youngest son’s birthday and he’s just turned 16. This means he is old enough to start learning how to drive. Having been though this with one kid, I am a bit more Zen about it than last time but even so, I am letting my husband do the first ten hours as the supervising driver!

He is my baby and it seems appropriate that on his birthday, Mills & Boon Australia re-released my first four novels …my book babies…in eBook format. They titled the anthology, Fiona Lowe’s Babies. Australian and NZ readers can buy it now. Amercian readers only have to wait until August 12th….not long! :-)

7160OBO10FL._SL1206_The weather in southern Victoria is truly atrocious at the moment with wind and rain and hail and snow so it’s perfect reading weather. If you’ve only been reading my books in the last few years you may have missed Pregnant On Arrival (2006), Her Miracle Baby (2006), The Nurse’s Longed-For Family (2006) and The French Doctor’s Midwife Bride (2007).

 

Set all around Australia from the red dust of Broken Hill to the lush rainforest of the Alps_fionaOtways, and the snow of the high-country, these four books feature second chances, new begingings, lots of medical drama and yes, there are babies ;-)

You can buy these books at Amazon, iBooks, Booktopia, Google Play and where all eBooks are sold.

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It’s been really chilly here with mornings of zero degrees Celcius and below. Here is a picture of Maggie-May, cow-dog extraordinarie who featured in Picture Perfect Wedding, standing on the lily frozen lily ponds and not impressed at all by the white frost!

 

On Thursday, I am setting off to Sydney…where I am told it is warmer… for the Australia Romance Writer’s Festival and the Romantic Book of the Year awards. I’m looking forward to catching up with readers and fellow writers….it’s always great to refill the well.

For more August updates, check out the What’s New page at my website

Happy Reading!

Routine Beckons

It’s winter and it’s three weeks siIMG_0410nce I last sat at my desk with my laptop attached to my screen, my fingers on the ergonomic keyboard and stared out the window at the veiw of the sea. It’s pretty cloudy today and hard to see the sea but I know its there.

These three things mean it’s back to work for me. My holiday/vacation was supposed to be two weeks but yeah, it stretched into three due to the fact that both boys were home and it was just too hard to concentrate and if I am honest, I just gave up trying to work! But today, is the day. Yeah, that’s why I’m blogging…..

The problem with not writing for three weeks is you forget where you are in the story. I read the first four chapters of the book but that was a week ago so yeah, I’ve forgotten again!  Studies have shown that after a vacation, we need retraining at our job. I know that today I will sigh a lot, delete a LOT of words and ask myself why am I even trying to write a book. The fact I have written 26 others is irrelevent.

If you have any tips on settling back into work, I’d love to hear them:-)

Fiona Lowe’s Weddings now out in Australia!

My anthology, Fiona Lowe’s Weddings is now available as an eBook in Australia as a prequel to my Wedding Fever trilogy, which will be out on shelf in Oz in September, October and November!Weddings mimibannerThis is an anthology of four of my previously published medical romances including the Warragurra duo; Wedding in Warragurra, The Playboy Doctor’s Marriage Proposal, A Woman to Belong To and The Surgeon’s Chosen Wife. For photos and details about each book click here.

You can buy it where all eBooks are sold in Australia including Booktopia iBooks   Amazon Mills & Boon Australia and all other eBook retailers such as Big W & JB HIFI  Books for less than coffee and cake so THAT is a sweet deal with no calories, only a happy-ever-after feeling :-)

Enjoy!