Writer of historical fiction, blogger, mum, pet lover :)


February 2017

A weekend at Brisbane

Here are a few photos I took of my time at Brisbane on the weekend.Founded in 1824 it is the capital of Queensland and the most populous city in the state. It was one of the first penal colonies in Redcliffe, now a suburb in Moreton Bay. 

It was named after Sir Thomas Brisbane, a governor of New South Wales and a Scots. Severe contrasting weather around the areas, in particular the Lockyear Valley, has meant that the heart of the city, the Brisbane River, has been known to flooding, the last floods in 2011 (in which it rained constantly for 11 weeks solid). The river overflowed into the areas shown in the photos known as South Bank, and has undergone a rejuvenation. 

A lovely city thats still expanding and growing, for the better. ☺

Writing seminar

Spent the afternoon in Brisbane at a writing seminar, ‘A Conversation with Joanna Penn.’ Joanna is a successful self published author, who was very open and honest in how she went from having a job that she was unhappy in, to being a happy creative writer. She has one of the Top 10 blogs for self publishing advice and has written fiction and non fiction with titles such as ‘How to Make a Living with your Writing.’

I very informative and inspiring afternoon, I came away feeling motivated and confident to continue my own writing journey.☺👍📚🎡

#iamwritingabook #writing #writingseminar #writing

Book choices

I headed down to my local library this week. I had printing to do and thinking to get done. I’m starting university next week, a part time creative writing course. Am really excited but nervous at the prospect. I’ve already looked at the work schedule for one of the units (a research one ) and there’s group work to do! Yikes. Even though I have a degree in English, the studying was all done online,including the group work. 

Here’s hoping that I get a mix of people to share my work with and compare notes….📚

PS Couldn’t leave a library without a few books to take with me! Here’s this week’s choices – orange themed! ☺ 

#marykubica #jpdelaney #agathachristie #tracychevalier #margaretattwood 😍


The weather is still in the 40s here, so we took to the beach at night to enjoy the cool breezes. It seems other people had the same idea – the beach was filled with families cooling down on the shore.

Here’s a haiku I wrote, inspired by this image:

Sooty black ocean,

A smatter of games, shoreside,

Bring a moment, joy.

#haiku #surfers paradise # australia

Book Review: Dead Man’s Land -Robert Ryan

Deeply entrenched as I am in WW1 (no pun intended!), I happened to come across this book whilst browsing my local QBD book store.

Its a fictional crime thriller, which (for me), makes a refreshing change from the more factual aspects of the Great War.

What was so appealing about this book is the POV of the main character. A strong older man and a doctor, Watson’ s previous claims to fame are as Sherlock Holmes’ sidekick.

With his relationship with Holmes estranged, Watson finds himself tending to the wounded along the Western Front. Surrounded by the carnage, a series of bodies turn up, and Watson has to use his detecting skills once more to solve the murders in a place where thousands of soldiers are dying every day.

This book is so well researched, with heaps of historical facts and settings. Added to that, there are both strong male AND female characters. It is a great read, even more so as the character of Dr Watson has always been shrouded in mystery, always one step behind Holmes.

I think Conan Doyle would approve. 4/5 stars.

Short Story: Middle Earth

Windsurfer: Gold Coast, Australia

Rhian parked up in the last available space in the tiny school car park. Just one space left! Quickly, she manoeuvred the car into the spot.

Looking down at the brand-new dashboard, she switched off the engine, still coming to terms with driving the large jeep-like people carrier that they had bought the previous week. Matt’s enthusiasm as they left the car sales showroom the previous week was entrancing, and they’d taken advantage of the powerful engine as they drove down the Pacific highway,

‘What would they think of this back home?’ he’d laughed, ‘We can drive onto the beach and allsorts, it’s awesome!’

Jack and Carys had giggled at his enthusiasm, strapped in the back of the humungous vehicle, Carys looking small in the large car seat.

They’d been living in Australia for just over a month now, and were loving it. The lifestyle was laid back, the weather fabulous, the scenery breathtaking. The route to the border to New South Wales had taken them past eucalyptus trees, glimpses of azure blue ocean, and the smell of frangipani overwhelming the senses. They were lapping up the sights and sounds of this new landscape. Just last weekend they had picnicked up beautiful Mount Tamborine with its gorgeous views of the Pacific Ocean, and the high-rise apartments that made-up Surfers Paradise. From this height the apartments looked like little Lego pieces arranged along the coastline.

‘Mam, hurry up or I’ll be late. I can see Ryan over there, waiting for me!’ Jack’s voice broke into her thoughts.

She glanced at his eager face and smiled. He had settled beautifully into his new school with the minimum fuss and bother, enjoying the Australian school environment. Any nerves that she had felt were diminished the very first day when Jack had skipped out of school, chatting away to a group of other boys. At nine years old, he was young enough to adapt quickly to his new life. Carys on the other hand, was not so keen on the crèche that they’d enrolled her into. Rhian thought that she was still cranky from the long plane journey and the heat. She was not sleeping as soundly as she had in Wales. Rhian made a mental note to buy a free-standing fan to help cool the evenings.

Unbuckling the car seat, she held onto their hands whilst they crossed the road to the school gates. The sun was already a golden globe in the sky, promising another day of hot sunshine. She smiled to herself as she remembered the first week that she had stood at the school gates waiting for Jack to appear. She had been chattering away to Carys when they were surrounded by a group of nine-year-old boys, Jack included.

‘Hi mam, this is Ryan, and Tyler, and Blake. I told them we are from Wales.’

‘Hello boys, how did school go?’ Rhian replied, looking at the faces gazing up at her with what can only be described as utter confusion.

Jack giggled as he looked at their puzzled faces.

‘You must speak slower, mam,’ he giggled.  ‘They are just getting used to your Welsh accent. Either that, or they think you are from Middle Earth!’

‘Don’t be cheeky, Jack!’ she replied, adjusting Carys t-shirt, Across the front were the words: I Heart Australia in bold gold and green letters.

Suzanne Bowditch



My reading companion

This is a recent photo of my dog Billy. He’s a fox terrier whose also my reading/writing buddy. Many words have been written on my computer with Billy next to me to offer moral support. I also discuss my characters, settings, and plots with him. If I am writing a tricky patch, I usually make a coffee and bounce off ideas with my pooch. He never answers, just looks at me with those soulful brown eyes. He’ s just turning eight next week and is a sweetie.

Does anyone have a favored routine for ideas? Creativity can be gushing and flow like a huge river or can be a trickle or even a dry river bed (perish the thought!).

“Writing is its own reward.” -Henry Miller 📚

Research, research, and research again!

I have a stack of books, in all shapes and sizes,bought or borrowed, that are piling up on my book shelf. It is positively groaning with the weight of knowledge that it holds.

As you can see, my book writing has led me to the Great War of 1914-1918, otherwise known as World War 1. To give this period of  time the respect and justice that it deserves, I have to read as much as possible. I am learning more and more each day, from the bald historical facts, to the thousands of stories by the soldier’s themselves, written by countless authors then and now.

So I have taken a photo of one book that has so far been a Bible for my research. It tells of the very first day of the Battle of the Somme in quite easy to read terms. I am currently devouring every page, so that my next book reads as authentically as possible.

The book will be called The Tourmaline Bracelet, and is the last book (sad face) of A Celtic Trilogy. I aiming (optimistically!) for a release date later this year. ☺📚

#writing #books #iamwriting #historicalfiction #ww1

The Broadwater

With the relentless heat still filling our senses day and night, most people have taken to the water.

Every water sport is covered, from languid fishing, kayaking, speed boating, jet skiing and wind surfing. The traffic gets pretty intense, and its not better on the shore, with families rubbing shoulders with the pelicans and seagulls. 

We were content to sit and watch the buzz around us.🐳🍵🌞🌊

#broadwater #australia

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