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My new novella, Whitewater, is now available. You can get it from Dreamspinner here or from All Romance ebooks here.

I've mentioned before that Whitewater is part of an anthology of novellas set in Australia and written by Australian authors: myself, LJ LaBarthe, Isabelle Rowan, RJ Astruc and Robyn Walker. The novellas are available as separate ebooks or together in a print edition. If you'd like to take a gander at the other stories, you can find them all on their very own page at Dreamspinner and All Romance ebooks. I hope you enjoy them!
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The last February interview of the #bandslash blog tour is up, and it's mine, over on Clancy Nacht's blog.

I talk about writing, music - obscure Australian bands of the 90s for the win! - and Metal Heart. Feel free to head over there for a chat.
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My next book is almost here! It's called Whitewater, it's a novella, and it's being released as a stand-alone ebook and in print as part of the Under the Southern Cross anthology, which is an anthology of five stories set in Australia written by Australian authors - myself, LJ LaBarthe, Isabelle Rowan, RJ Astruc and Robyn Walker.

More about the anthology as a whole in a minute. First I just want to share the absolutely beautiful cover art, done by the amazing Anne Cain, and the blurb for Whitewater.

Whitewater cover art and blurb, plus the links for the whole anthology )

If you like the sound of that, the link for preordering is here. The book will be available on March 13th, so not too long to go now.

The cover art for the anthology as a whole, and the other individual ebooks, is just as stunning as that for Whitewater. Anne is truly a genius. The whole lot is available for preorder at the following links:

Under the Southern Cross paperback

The Body on the Beach by LJ LaBarthe

Coming Home by Robyn Walker

Jasper and the Dead by RJ Astruc

The Red Heart by Isabelle Rowan
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The #bandslash blog tour continues on Jet's blog with Piper Vaughn & Mj O'shea's 'Lucky Moon' rockstar series!

Go here for the interview with Piper and MJ


On Saturday, at 3pm US EST, I will be at the Dreamspinner Press Goodreads group doing a chat. It'll be Sunday morning for me, so if you come and talk to me you'll get to see what I'm like when I first wake up, so that'll be fun! I will be doing a giveaway during the chat, the exact details of which have yet to be decided, but I'm pondering it. I'll post the link to the chat when I have it. I hope to see you there!

PS. I think I forgot to post the original #bandslash post here. If you click on this link it'll explain everything. The first giveaway is done and dusted though, alas, but there's still one to go, and lots of interesting interviews in between!
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It's obviously the week to get a free copy of my book!

First of all, you can win a copy of Metal Heart via the #bandslash blog tour, if you comment on the first post at Babes in Boyland.

If you go here, to Reviews by Jessewave, you can sling your name into the hat to win another free copy. Have at it, kids!
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So, it's January the 28th in most parts of the world now, which means that Metal Heart is now officially for sale! You can find it at the Dreamspinner store in ebook or paperback formats, at All Romance ebooks and Amazon, although for some reason it's currently only in paperback there. I'm sure it'll be available at the Kindle store very soon.

I have a couple of promotional things planned for the book, including participating in a massive rock star-related blog hop in February which I will tell you about very soon.

As befits a book release day where I also have the day off (thank you, Auckland anniversary day), I have spent the day making a soundtrack for Metal Heart; since I always rabbit on about how music is instrumental to my writing process, I decided to finally pony up a playlist for you, which is fitting for a book about musos.

Not every song I listened to during writing is on there, but there's enough there for you to get a flavour of it:

Here it is if you'd like to take a listen.

I even uploaded some obscure Aussie rock for you, so prepare to be baffled by that! :)

I also made ice cream today but since I can't pass any of that through the Internet, you'll have to content yourself with some music instead.

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Within the first week of the new year is fine for posting these sorts of lists, right? Too bad if it isn't, because I'm posting it anyway. For the past few years I have posted a list of the books I read during the calendar year that I particularly enjoyed, so here is 2012's list. If you're looking for some kind of insightful reviewing, you will not find it here, but hopefully you'll at least get a sense of why I liked the books I've included. I've included buy links as well, just in case anything tickles your fancy. In no particular order, we have:

The Christmas Proposition, by KA Mitchell

Christmas tree farm owner Mel takes up with millionaire mining company owner Bryce Campion again after a 3-year break. This was great. The introduction of Bryce was genius, the sex was smoking hot and overall, despite some contact embarrassment from some events towards the end of the book, it was a ridiculously enjoyable read.

Wild Boy, My Life in Duran Duran, by Andy Taylor

Oh, ANDY. As a child of the 80s I of course loved Duran Duran so this was right up my alley. Undoubtedly biased, it was still an easy and interesting read, giving a lot of insight into what it's like to be thrust into the middle of enormous fortune and fame when you least expect it. John Taylor also has an autobiography out (In the Pleasure Groove: Love, Death and Duran Duran. Oh, JOHN), and I am all over that like a frigging rash, let me tell you.

Soulless, by Gail Carriger

Spinster Alexia Tarrabotti, half Italian and with no soul to boot, gets under the skin of the grumpy Scottish Alpha of the local werewolf pack, Lord Maccon. She has trouble understanding feelings, and he has a lot of those, plus poor impulse control when it comes to her. He is also prone to stripping in public when he wants to shift, which the gaggle of gay vampires in the book do not mind one little bit. This was fluff, but the type of fantastic fluff that had me laughing out loud a lot, and loving it.

The Time of the Singing, by Louise Blaydon

Gay priest meets late-teen altar boy and shenanigans ensue. I am partial to religious-themed stories, and this one was a great one. I found the struggles that the priest, Raf, went through over his feelings for Nate realistic. From what I've seen some people had problems with Nate's age, but I would say that anyone who masturbates openly while confessing their sins to the object of those sinful thoughts isn't exactly a naive innocent.

Tigerland, by Sean Kennedy

Sequel to Tigers and Devils, which I LOVED. I loved this one just as much. It's 3 years on from Tigers and Devils, and Simon and Declan have grown and matured, both as individuals and a couple. These books are hilarious, and also very Australian. If you haven't read these two books, you are really missing out on some absolute gold and you should go right now, RIGHT NOW, and get them because they are totally worth the time you'll lose when you can't put them down.

Once Burned, by Jeaniene Frost

The vampire Vlad (yes, that Vlad) meets Leila, who, after an accident with some power lines, electrocutes everyone she meets. I expected to hate this book. I didn't. I enjoyed it a lot. I haven't read the original series for which this is a spin off, but that didn't matter. Vlad was sexy, and Leila does try to resist him in a non-annoying way. I will be reading the second one when it comes out.

The Channeling Morpheus series, by Jordan Castillo Price

Vampire hunter Michael meets Wild Bill, vampire extraordinaire, and they can't keep away from each other. Eventually they stop trying. Holy crap, THIS SERIES. I adored it. Absolute, unreserved adoration. The last 3 or 4 in the story are particularly intense, and really shows how far they've come over the course of the series. I am particularly partial to Bill's POV, because he really gives away how his feelings for Michael are developing, in only a word here and there, a stray thought, which is masterful on JCP's part. The link is to the first one, Payback, but there's a link to the entire bundle (#1-10 plus a couple of shorts) there as well. Just buy them all, and read them all at once. You won't regret it.
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It's all happening Metal Heart-wise - the book is now on Dreamspinner's Coming Soon page, with a release date of January 28th. This means it's available for pre-order. There's also an official blurb, which I'll post below to wet your whistles:


Scott King swore off rock stardom after his band, King Phoenix, crashed and burned. Now in his forties, Scott lives a quiet life as a music producer and session guitarist. But in a box hidden in his wardrobe lie the relics of the past he left behind—a past filled with drugs, booze, and broken hearts. For sixteen years, Scott has had no contact with his former bandmates, so when he’s asked to play at a benefit gig for King Phoenix’s old sound man, his world turns upside down. A King Phoenix reunion means a run-in with Scott’s ex, Ash Walker—and sixteen years ago, believing Ash wanted to leave the band, Scott OD’d and almost died. 

Since then, Scott has ruthlessly suppressed his feelings. As a result, he's completely unprepared for the impact of seeing Ash again, or for dealing with his emotions about the band’s demise. He definitely didn’t expect Ash to want to start up where they left off. Now Scott has to decide between his safe existence and the twenty-year-old love song that could cost him his sobriety—and his heart.


So, there you go. :) If you like the sound of that, then you can pre-order the ebook here, and the paperback here. Only 4 weeks to wait now!

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Well, Christmas is over for another year, and we are staring down the barrell of 2013. 2013! How on earth did that happen?

I got various things for Christmas, the most exciting of which is my cover art for Metal Heart. Done by the wonderful Anne Cain, it's all I could have wanted in a cover for my Aussie rocker boys.

Metal Heart cover )

Beautiful, no?
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I'm pleased to announce that in addition to Metal Heart, which will be released January/February, I'll have another book coming out early-ish next year, from Dreamspinner Press once again. It's a novella called Whitewater, and it's about a baker called Luke Henderson and a chef called Cameron Brown, and what they get up to on and around Coogee Beach in Sydney. It'll be released as an ebook, and also in paperback as part of the anthology Under the Southern Cross, where it will join other stories by LJ LaBarthe, Isabelle Rowan, RJ Astruc and Robyn Walker.

Whitewater means quite a lot to me, for several reasons. It'll see the light of day in March next year, and I hope people enjoy it.
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So, it's been a while, internets. Even longer than what's normal for me. That's mainly because life is kicking me in the metaphorical nuts right now, and has been since September. First it knocked me down, then it kicked me while I was down there a few times, and just when I thought I was going to be able to get up, it's kicking me again. So far my health is the only thing that has stayed relatively stable in recent weeks, and even that is only a matter of time, probably.

Anyway! When sucky things like the last few weeks happen, I generally take refuge in music. So I'm going to share with you some songs that have made me happy lately. They are all New Zealand bands/singers, and I encourage you to check them out, because they are fab.

First up, Shapeshifter. These guys are a Drum and Bass band, which is a genre--along with hip hop, soul, and funk--that heavily influences a lot of NZ music. I don't know what it is about this country, but the Kiwis love their beats. Shapeshifter love their epic, 7-minute, mostly instrumental songs, which depending on your taste can get a little tedious, but this song is a beautiful exception. Paora Apera's voice shines in this one. He's got a real yearning quality to his voice which I love.

Something to note, if you're at all sensitive to strobe-like, flashing lights, skip this video.

On the more rocky side, we have Six60. I have a real soft spot for these guys. They are great live. Singer Matiu Walters also has a yearning quality to his voice that can be really, really beautiful in their slower songs.

The Wyld are a relatively new Kiwi band putting out music that's a really intriguing mix of genres which took a while to grow on me, but now it has I think they're amazing. The singer has a certain quality to his voice, something that's not at all a theme of this post...hmm. But I could listen to 2:15-2:35 over and over again until the end of time.

Last but by no means least, Kimbra. The world knows her as the female voice in Gotye's Somebody That I Used to Know, but her solo work is fantastic. Judging by how many YouTube videos I found of her doing American promotion, I guess at least some of the world knows that by now? This song is so beautiful I can hardly stand it.

So, there you go. Kiwi music. Not bad, not bad at all.
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This time next week, I will be getting ready to go back to Australia for my birthday. I didn't go back last year at all, mainly because the universe tried to kill me, and it turns out that spending a few weeks with your body trying to eat itself from the inside out takes a while to recover from, surprise, surprise.


I am starting to think about what I am looking forward to most about the trip. I guess some people would say family? Friends? The duty-free fags and grog at the airport? Not being at work for 10 days? Missing out on the positively disgusting NZ weather we've been having lately for the same amount of time?

Those people are not me. What I am looking forward to most are these three things:

Strawberry Freddos

Caramello Koalas

Cheese Twisties

Seriously, Strawberry Freddos are delicious and I miss them terribly. I brought Caramello Koalas back for the Kiwis once and they almost died at how good they were. There are chips here called Twisties but they pale in comparison to the real thing so much that it's not even funny. I'm pretty much going to procure all three things as soon as I get there. And if I can fit two 72-piece boxes of chocolate into my suitcase on the way home I might just do it.

This of course begs the question: what chocolate/lolly/biscuit do you absolutely LOVE that you can't get where you live? Tim Tams? Junior Mints (nom)? Jaffa Cakes? Fuzzy Peaches? Something that you've spent an outrageous amount on ordering online, or that you buy every time you go to the country that sells them. Or that you force your relatives to buy for you, or friends to send you whenever they can. Something that bloody good that you don't want to live without it.
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Yes, indeed. Despite needing another social media tool like a hole in the head, I have a Facebook page now. The links, should you fancy clicking on it and taking a look, is here.

You are welcome to friend me if you would like to. I can't promise to be earth-shatteringly interesting (like I am here HAHAHA), but so far there's a quote from Henry Rollins and a picture of the most adorable little gorilla I have ever seen. If you like Hank Rollins and cute baby animals it might just be right up your alley!


Jul. 28th, 2012 08:14 pm
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Well, London, that was a delightful opening ceremony. LOVED the music montage and the Cauldron, they were absolutely great. The cauldron was really stunning.

As someone who's lived through a home-town Olympics, all I can say is enjoy it as much as you can. I have fond memories of the Sydney Olympics: watching Andrew Hoy leap off his horse after his gold medal ride in the dressage, clearly absolutely delighted, and watching him race up into the stands to greet his family and friends; the tiny girl beside us at the basketball, wrapped in the Italian flag and screaming her lungs out at the Italian basketball team as they played France; a whole bus full of people cheering their lungs out for the bus driver who had finally managed to get his struggling bus up over the hill we were trying to climb; sitting on the grass in the city watching a whole host of Aussie bands play for free; and just how happy everyone was to be there. I have experienced nothing like that atmosphere before or since.

I'm not really going to watch much of this Olympics, except as much of the equestrian events as I can, and probably some swimming (because - although God knows I do not want to jinx them - Aussies generally pop up in quite a few of the swimming finals), because I'm not into watching sport for sport's sake, but I hope everyone involved has a great time.

You'll have to allow me some bias when it comes to the opening ceremony that I think was the best though...

(I can't embed the highlights video, but for those of you who want to see more than 12 minutes of horses, the link is here).

Good news

Jul. 4th, 2012 10:02 pm
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I am pleased to announce that Dreamspinner have accepted my novel Metal Heart for publication early next year, in January/February. That's a few months away still, so the excerpts I posted here and here will have to tide you over until then. This novel is close to my heart for several reasons, which I'll talk about closer to the publication date, but for now just know that I am delighted that it's seeing the light of day.

In other book news, Elisa Rolle has given Equilibrium a really nice review, of which my favourite part was this:

The incursion of modern life, i.e. evil big city, is sudden and almost frightening, Michael will understand that his self-imposed exile is also his safe-shelter, and that there is nothing in the big city that he cannot find in small town, on the contrary, small town has more options for him than any other place in the world.

Aww. That last line just kills me. Thanks to Elisa for the lovely review!
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I've been tagged!

Here are the rules: The ‘rules’ are: Go to page 7 or 77 of your latest work. Read down to the seventh line and then post online the next seven lines or sentences. Then head off and tag seven more writers.

This is from page 77 of Metal Heart, which is at this present moment still on submission:


Covered in sand, no taxi would pick them up, so they walked, getting directions from keen early morning beach goers and joggers. They got back to the hotel at 9am to find a furious Dean waiting for them at the door of their room.

"Where the fuck have you been?" he hissed at them. "We're supposed to be checking out in an hour, for fuck's sake, and fucking look at you, you look like—is that sand?"

Scott started laughing, pressing his face into Ash's shoulder as he started laughing too, and they curled into each other before Dean's glare penetrated the fog of intoxication and made them try to straighten up and school their expressions. Ash cleared his throat.

"Yes. It was a very nice night for a swim."


I'm going to be a total wowser and not tag anyone except for LJ Labarthe, because that's the way I roll, but anyone who fancies it can feel free to participate.
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Internets! I have a question for you.

If you were a pastry chef (and so could make any sweet thing you liked) making a dessert for a person who you were hoping to get into bed (preferably as soon as dessert is finished), what would you make?

If it matters, this is the first time you're cooking for this person, and they've told you that they'll eat anything.

Enquiring minds want to know. I have my own thoughts on this, but it never hurts to get a second opinion.


May. 27th, 2012 07:25 pm
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Various places where you can find my books are having sales at the moment:

JMS Books are having 30% off ebooks all weekend (Reasonable Force).

At Torquere Press you can get 15% off your order all weekend with the code memday2012 (Rust Red: Galvanized)

Dreamspinner are entering the final week of their 5th birthday celebration, and that means that you can get my DSP books for 20% off until May 31st (Equilibrium paperback and ebook, and Tinsel and Dust)

Happy shopping!
meredith_shayne: ((default))
Hello blogland, long time no speak! While I admit that I am a terrible blogger under usual circumstances, I am not generally this bad. But when your book suddenly decides that it wants to be 20,000 words longer than you originally thought, and you'd like to get it done before the end of the century, there's no choice but to put your head down, your bum up, and not stop until the very last word is written. I'm thrilled to be able to report that the last word was written last night, and it has been submitted. After I submitted it I felt a lot like how I used to feel when I was at Uni, after all my exams were over: like a weight had lifted from me, and I was free at last, free at last. Tonight I feel a lot like how I felt when I submitted my PhD: vaguely nervous, somewhat unsettled, and like I should be doing something instead of lollygagging about. Every time I remember that I'm finished and I've given myself a couple of weeks off writing, it's a little bit of a shock.

So, anyway. The novel is called Metal Heart, it's around 88,500 words, and it's the same story that I talked about in this post, when I posted a little snippet of it. I'm not very good at waiting, but hopefully I'll hear whether it's been accepted soon. Cross your fingers and toes for me, poppets!

In other writing related news, my good friend LJ Labarthe interviewed me for her blog, and the interview is posted here, so you can have a look at that if the mood takes you. I do a fair bit of waffling about being Australian, and about Brokeback Mountain, and also say why I am a cactus. Who wouldn't want to know that, I ask you?

Brief Encounters reviews also reviewed my Torquere Press Color Box, Rust Red: Galvanized, here, and gave it a B, so yay to that! In her review, Tam says:

I really enjoyed this follow-up, watching the guys work it out, seeing Chris’ fear but his determination not to be that guy who nearly lost Adam in the first book. I liked the author’s voice, and those who enjoyed the first one will equally enjoy this glimpse at the guys.

Which is very nice of her. And let's not forget that the prequel to Rust Red: Galvanized, Eyes Wide Shut, is available as a freebie in various places, and freebies are always good.

Right, that's me done, I'm off to read a book, because I can do that now, and hopefully it won't be another two months before I post again!
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I'm delighted to report that Cole from Brief Encounters Reviews gave Reasonable Force an A- rating. He says:

...what I most enjoyed about this story is the fact that I’m not given the answers. It’s not great, vast plotline. It’s a pretty simple short story actually. But that style of storytelling lets the reader’s imagination become more active in the story. I like a story that is different to me than anyone else, and I have a feeling that that might be true with this story...I’d recommend this one and I hope everyone who reads it enjoys it as I did!

What a lovely way to round off my weekend. Thanks to Cole and BER!



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