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Saints and Slaves

Saints and Slaves

Saints and Slaves

Congratulations to Doctor Martin Sullivan on publishing: Saints and Slaves: A History of Catholic Schooling and the Catholic Church in the diocese of Townsville, North Queensland – 1870 to 1970.

This book has resurrected the stories of the men and women who served the Catholic Church in Queensland. Stories that have slipped into the darkness of anonymity.

When these holy pioneers left Ireland for the northern wilds of the new colony of Queensland, little could they imagine how deeply their devotion would be tested by this barren and hostile landscape. The depths of the poverty and the hardships they would face with only their resilience, resourcefulness, and zeal.

Even the most recognisable name from that time Mary Mackillop – Mother Mary of the Cross has had only a fraction of her true tale told.

This book parts history’s curtains to bring you the stories of this saint and those who worked as willing slaves to establish the Catholic Church in Queensland.

Congratulations to Bruce Zimmerman …

Bruce Zimmerman - loving reading his life story.

Bruce Zimmerman – loving reading his life story.

Bruce has lead a pretty interesting life.

A life long resident of Brisbane, his story covers growing up on a farm on the city outskirts, his adventures as a boy during wartime, his career as a truck driver, his lovely family, and his many motorbikes and cars and trucks and boats.

Everyone has a story. Let me help you hold yours in your hands.

Congratulations Phyllis!


Dear All,

My dear colleague Phyllis McDuff has had her new book Bequest featured on Sunday Spotlight at Australian Women Writers Challenge.

Bequest is the amazing story of a family heirloom. A small remainder of the family fortune confiscated by the Nazis and a small reminder of a time not so long ago, when disability was an insurmountable disadvantage.

Available in ebook or paperback from Amazon.

Also available at a library near you!

Many thanks to Theresa Smith of Australian Women Writers Challenge for the stirling work you do.

And introducing … To Conquer Heaven

To Conquer Heaven

To Conquer Heaven

JEREMY WANG, an astrophysicist completing his PhD at Cambridge, discovers a clue to the secret location of an ancient tomb sealed with the deaths of all 700,000 labourers and artisans who built it. The tomb is the final resting place of QIN SHI HUANG; the bloody-thirsty tyrant who forged a new empire from the ashes of six ancient kingdoms in 220BC. The empire that bears his name to this day; Qin’a, pronounced in English as China.

Terrified of the fate awaiting him in the afterlife, Qin Shi Huang combined the emerging science of alchemy with the deepest secrets of Taoist lore to create the Elixir of Life.

The Emperor was tricked into drinking too deeply and fell into torpor. And so he waits in his hidden tomb; the apex of an entire civilization’s art, science, and magic.

Helping Jeremy to unravel the riddle and find the lost tomb are:

BRETT EAST; ex-college roommate and professional gambler who owes Jeremy a big favour
DR SAFFIYAH HALCYONE; aloof and lovely Egyptian archaeologist with a controversial academic theory
JIN; Saffiyah’s trusted family friend and guide.

The tomb will be found. Mind games, magic, and supernatural creatures will be countered with science, cunning, and luck. Will they survive? Will they succeed?

Fans of 80s action adventure cinema; ‘Big Trouble in Little China’ and the Indiana Jones series will love To Conquer Heaven. A similar title is Kylie Chan’s ‘Dark Heavens’.

100 promotional copies to give away!

Available on Amazon in ebook and paperback.

Devastated …

Dear All,

Sadly my application for funding under RADF for Anthology Aaronson has been declined.  I received a phone call to explain the decision and I can’t say I agree with the reasons but I am grateful for the personal nature of that courtesy.

This rejection highlights the great struggle we all face as authors to put our stories out there, connect with our audiences, and earn a living wage.

RADF grants are seldom given to writers.  But we need to keep trying, and keep applying.

Thank you all for your support.  Hopefully I can find alternative funding for this project, as I consider it to be very much worthwhile.  Stay in touch folks and keep writing.

NaNoWriMo baby!

Dear All,

In November 2014 I started my second novel, Habnab.  And now, in November 2016, I have finished it.

Well … when I say finished, I mean the first draft.

So it is now on cool down awaiting my pleasure.  In the meantime I am editing an amazing historical memoir of local Brisbane artist Anne Collins; Tradewind Annie.  Stay tuned … it is a cracking read.


Anthology Aaronson smartphone app

Friends, writers, countrymen (of Logan in particular and Queensland in general) … lend me your ears!

I have this great plan.  And I’m applying for an RADF grant in order to make it happen.

This plan is to create a free smartphone app called Anthology Aaronson targeting commuters containing 20 of your short stories.

At the bottom of each short story is the option to:

  • share the story through the subscriber’s Facebook feed, and
  • buy an e-book from the author of the short story.

So, in marketing terms, the short story is a lead generator for your work for sale, a tool for building your audience, and a way to publicise upcoming releases.

In order to gain RADF funding, I really need your support.  You can demonstrate your support by leaving a message in the Comments below containing the following:

  • Your name
  • The title and genre of the short story you would like to contribute
  • Contact details (a phone number or an email address)

Here is the Project Description from my application:

In today’s distraction rich environment, literature often plays second fiddle to other pastimes. On buses and trains all over the world, e-books jostle for attention against apps like Candy Crush and social media sites like Facebook.

As a Logan writer, I understand the greatest challenge is attracting and holding the attention of an audience.

According to Macquarie University, author earnings are at an all time low of $12,000/annum; a third of minimum wage.  Lack of awareness of this issue contributes to its continuance.

Drawing upon my background and experience as a computer programmer and database analyst in the nineties and noughties, I have come up with an innovative strategy to attract and retain readership for my work and that of other authors in Logan and throughout Queensland.

New audiences for short stories and novels can be found by effectively exploiting smartphone functionality and engaging directly with audiences in a manner familiar to them.

I will create an app, like the popular game Candy Crush, and use the popular social media site Facebook, to promote it.  The app will contain twenty short stories from Logan authors.  The app will be advertised on buses and at coffee shop tills in the form of a QR code.

When downloaded onto a smartphone, the app will ping every weekday morning at 7.00am with the story of the day.  Whilst on their commute, the subscriber can read the short story.  At the bottom of the story is a discount on an e-book from the supplying author which the subscriber may purchase with a single tap.  Also at the bottom of the app is a ‘Like’ button so the subscriber can share the short story through their Facebook feed attracting further readership for the contributing author.

Each day a new story is made available through the app.  This drip feed approach will build and retain readership.

This strategy aims to encourage reading among the target audience; commuters, and generate sales for the authors who contribute their short stories.

The app approach to disseminating short stories allows for important metrics to be acquired, such as bus routes of greatest engagement, collection of email addresses from interested subscribers, and conversion rate from short story subscriber to e-book purchaser.


Only through innovation, and support can authors increase their earnings to a living wage and spread their stories as far as possible.


Thank you for your support.  I look forward to reading your stories.

Post BWF …

Well what a festival!  I got to meet lots of local authors including Philip J Bradbury!

Keep an eye open for his new book “The Last Stand down”.  A psychological thriller that fans of Lee Child and Jodi Picoult will love!   Coming soon …

One of the highlights of the festival was meeting local legend, Dr Barry Jones; former Science Minister in the Hawke years and ex-quiz show champion.  He has always been a person I have greatly admired.

I managed to overcome my nerves, approach him, and introduce myself.

Me:  “Dr Jones, I’m a life long fan of your work.”

Him:  “Well dear, there’s no reason to stop now.”

What a wit!

See you at the Brisbane Writers Festival

Dear All,

This year’s Brisbane Writers Festival looks like a brilliant line-up.  Can’t wait to see one of my all time comic idols – Alexei Sayle!

Come along and let’s talk about getting your e-book on line and up for sale.

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