• Blog

    The Stupid Movie Blog Tour brings you Better Off Dead…


    Better Off Dead Movie PosterToday it is my stop on The Stupid Movie Blog Tour and my choice is the wonderful, horrible and magical Better Off Dead. It’s an 80’s teen classic. This movie isn’t as well known as The Breakfast Club or Pretty in Pink but everyone I mention it to, who has seen it, says they love it.

    Why did I choose this movie? In 1985 when I was an Australian exchange student called Monique who happened to be in America, this movie, about French exchange student called Monique who happened to be in America ran almost weekly on cable TV. It was on so much one of my host sisters started calling me Mow-neek in the accent of the horrible host mother in the movie, complete with the face smushing actions.

    So I love this movie because it holds a personal connection to me but for several other reasons as well.

    1. John Cusack
    What’s not to love about John Cusack. This may well have been the first movie I saw him in he was quirky and intelligent and interesting. He didn’t look like the cookie cutter teen movie heartthrob one was used to seeing and I liked that. I’ve liked him in just about everything I have seen him in since. Apparently John himself kind of disowns this movie and won’t discuss it (his from a man who was in Hot Tub Time Machine!). I think that’s a mistake because I know lots of people who met and fell in love with John in this movie.

    2. Diane Franklin’s Monique.
    I really liked this character. She was just about the only one in the whole cast who was’t a lunatic. She did dazed, confused and intelligent all at once. She was frustrated and exasperated but she was always a kind character. Oh yes and the short, foreign chick with curly hair got the guy. That’s perfection right there.

    3. Cast of wacky characters
    In the movie Layne has been dumped by his girlfriend, the very perfect Beth, and he doesn’t want to live without her. The kid is already depressed and he’s not helped by the characters that torment him daily from his own oblivious parents, the psychotic paper boy or the Japanese race car drivers who burn him off, complete with track-style commentary, at the traffic lights every day. Of course these characters are absurd and over the top but they take the edge off the serious subject – Layne’s many hopeless suicide attempts – and in a weird way show his reaction to being dumped is also ridiculous and over the top. Suicide isn’t a funny subject but this movie makes it funny and it also shows that things get better, if you just hang in there.

    4. Memorable moments
    You know a movie is good if years later moments in your day to day life remind you of the movie. There are a few scenes like that in Better Off Dead. The movie often uses Layne’s internal dialogue – he commentates with his inner thoughts so you get to see his awkward teen angst through his eyes. There’s one where Beth rubs her nose so he rubs his she rubs harder so she does too and until their rubbing their faces with both hands like utter lunatics – each thinks the other is trying to say “Dude you have a little something….”. Every time someone ‘has a little something” this scene flashes through my mind nearly 30 years later.

    It’s hard sometimes to say why one movie stays with you so clearly and others fade. I’m not really a big fan of slapstick and prat-falling in movies and this movie has plenty. I think what this movie had as well, which is why I remember it, is heart oh yeah and a happy ending.

    Better Off Dead DVD Menu

    Deborah Nam-Krane
    11/6/2014 07:21:06 pm

    First, thank you for participating in the tour!

    Second- ha! My husband is a much bigger fan of Cusack (and this movie) than I am, but when I think of this movie, I think of this line and snicker:

    Kerrie Olzak
    11/6/2014 07:42:34 pm

    Great movie! “I want my two dollars!”

    11/6/2014 08:49:21 pm

    I love that movie! So funny.
    Have you seen One Crazy Summer? That’s a good one too. 🙂
    11/7/2014 05:25:31 am

    You never look at the paper boy the same way after this movie!

    That is a great line…I really need to watch this with my teenager.

    I have seen that Melissa…also fun!

  • Blog

    Growing the #NaNoWriMo word count, ordering print copies and singing along on #MusicalMonday


    Crazy Busy Messy Work Space
    November already and that means NaNoWriMo is underway.

    Here’s a little update from me this far. As I type (4pm)my word count is 13, 038 words thus far. I managed 6,000 on Saturday, and just over 4,000 tomorrow. I feel I can probably manage a few more today so hopefully another 4,000 word day.

    That seems like a lot and it is. I don’t write like that normally. The truth is I didn’t have anything I had to do this weekend socially and so I didn’t make any plans. My husband was working and my daughter was recovering from exam week so she was fine with having a mellow time of it. That allowed me the luxury of indulging myself by doing not much besides writing.

    The weeks don’t work that way. I have work deadlines, social commitments, places to take the kid to and from. I like to get ahead when I can so that when reality hits hard I don’t fall too far behind.

    Take a look at that photo up there. That’s my writing space. We’re half way through repainting the inside of our very open plan house. So that means this week I’ll be shunted around in the chaos. Oh yes, I probably should help a little so that takes time. A very good incentive to get head, don’t you think?

    Alphabet Dating, A Fair Exchange and Building Attraction Paperbacks
    Aren’t these pretty? I have paperbacks of my first five stand alone novels. They’ll be live on Amazon any day. I’ll let you know. I also have a box on their way to me as next week I’m having a table with another author at the local Christmas night markets. I hope I sell loads.
    It is always hard to sell e-books at something like that. I like selling paperbacks and one feels very authorial signing copies but the truth is I don’t make any more profit this way. Still, I’m well aware, especially here in Australia, how many people still prefer a paperback.

    And now for musical Monday. Let me find a song to fit the mood of my current project.

  • Blog

    Procrastinating on a Musical Monday


    Sydney Harbour BridgeI often say I could procrastinate for Australia. so accomplished am I at this under-rated skill. If there were state selections I’d definitely final.

    To me procrastination isn’t putting stuff off forever or never doing it, but rather putting it off until it wakes you in the night, distracts you from other things and gives you a cold sweat at the mere thought of it, whatever it is.

    This I am amazing at this.

    The things I procrastinate about fall neatly into two categories – things that scare me and things that bore me.

    I think we all have things in that second category. Mine includes folding laundry, sorting mail, anything tax related and anything involving the more technical aspects of the computers (as this translates to my writing anything on Amazon or Createspace). It makes that we don’t relish doing these jobs but like them or not they don’t go away.

    The first category – the scary stuff – also makes sense but putting it off usually doesn’t minimise the fear. My experience of doing this for MY ENTIRE LIFE is that the fear grows bigger, it’s shadow looms larger and it’s weight grows heavier.

    Often the things I’m scared of are new things.

    The truth is it usually takes longer to master something new so one really should take all the available time not leave it until there’s simply not enough but logic and fear have never been logical companions. Sometimes the new things are even opportunities and then you have to add in that little voice that asks “do you deserve this opportunity?”

    Procrastinator and self-sabotage – what a charming picture I paint.

    My to-do list this week is alarmingly long because of the above but today I have scratched my big black pen through quite a few line items. That’s terrific but it leaves me asking as it does every time – ‘when will you learn?’ My guess is never.

    (FYI -I don’t consider flaking out and not completing tasks procrastination. I do eventually get everything done. I don’t miss deadlines that affect other people because at my core I’m embarrassingly polite and it’s rude to mess other people around.)

    So after that we need a perky tune for a Monday. This song is one of my current favourites. Yes it is about a breakup but it is also about a girl going after what she wants and I like that a lot.

  • Blog

    Preparing for NaNoWriMo this Musical Monday


    NaNoWriMo Participant 2014 BadgeAnother Monday…another blog post.

    So much for my regular blogging the rest of the week. I hang my blogging head in shame. I didn’t manage anything since last Monday.

    It’s ten days until NaNoWriMo begins and so that means it is time to get my butt in gear. That means I have ten days to finish a romance novel under a pen name to get off to some BETA readers and I need to finish the draft of Book 2 in the series I’m writing Book 3 during November.

    So that’s writing one book, editing one book and planning one book. That seems a little bit much for me. I generally do better with my mind focused on one thing, not several.

    Bad luck Monique. Or as I often say here in real life “suck it up, Princess.” In order to succeed in November I need to do these things in October. They’re not optional.

    One thing I have tried to do is squeeze in some social activities this month so that November is not too full. The truth is here in Australia, while we don’t celebrate Thanksgiving (although my little family does) November means end of year activities by the bucket-load. End of year lunches, dinners and catch-ups all happen in November. I’ve already got two Christmas lunches slotted in.

    Yep the big summer of fun that I so look forward to every year starts about mid-November, so I have to be judicious about what I commit to at the start of the month. I hope people understand but I’ve decided for once that it’s okay if they don’t. I’ve been rescheduled, postponed and cancelled for far flimsier reasons than “I’m writing a novel!”

    In book 2 in the Upper Crust Series Lucy goes to her old home town. Her old best friend Marissa is going to get her own book down the track…I think that will be book 4 in the series. I’m pretty sure Book 2 will be Cherie who featured quite heavily in the novella…unless I change my mind and Marissa is Book 3…see these are the sorts of decisions I have to make.

    This musical Monday I’m giving you one of my favourite small-town songs ever. It played out at the end of Northern Exposure (a show I loved and watched until it’s death knell) and I do actually own several of Iris deMent’s albums, as my husband met her through work, back in the day. This is a song that makes me cry every time. Love, loss and reminiscing and a little laughter…let’s hope I can capture all those things in my novel.

    If you have a treasured song about small time life I would love to hear about it. Happy Monday.

  • Blog

    Teacups, newsletters, sales and a song for Musical Monday



    Hearts AfireAnother Monday rolls around. My to-do list this week is startlingly long and scary. I think that happens most weeks, especially if you kind of fail to get everything on last week’s list done and it all rolls over.

    These tea-cups are pretty right. My two most popular Facebook posts on my author page in the last few months have far and away been the ones featuring these cups. There you go, who would have guessed?

    As a result, I’m doing a giveaway in my next newsletter of one of these cups so sign up if you would like to win one.

    There’s a button on this page, on the front page of the website and even on my Facebook page. So easy.

    In other news I can hardly believe that Hearts Afire my second book baby is just under 2 years old. Where did the time go? I really love that book. I love Matt in that book, actually. The e-book is on sale this week for 99cents so grab a copy if you haven’t already go one.





    Now for musical Monday. I’m kind of torn. I had a song in mind but then this morning I heard this song this morning and I thought, that is a lovely song for a Monday.

  • Blog

    Everything old is new again – or digging through my NaNoWriMo archives


    New Release Book Shelf in Book StoreSo it’s October now which means NaNoWriMo or National Novel Writing Month is a matter of weeks away.

    If you don’t know what National Novel Writing Month is a simple explanation is that people around the world commit to write a 50,000 word novel in the month of November.

    Here is the post I did last November which outlines my tips for surviving the month.

    In 2012 I did a series of blog posts helping you to prepare for NaNoWriMo. If you haven’t read them they cover topics such as like plotting, meal preparation, eliminating distractions and even exercise.

    They were:
    Part 1 – Plan Your Writing
    Part 2 – Plan Your Life for NaNoWriMo
    Part 3 – Plan the month of Writing – or tips to
    Part 4 – Plan to Care for your Body ( A Guest post from physiotherapist & author Terri Green)

    I don’t think I have a whole lot new to say on the topic.

    Here are some reasons I love NaNoWriMo.
    1. Writing is a pretty solitary activity – by participating in this event that writers from all over the globe you feel less alone. It gives you a sense of belonging. In fact your city or town probably has write-ins, drinks and other get together’s for people participating so you can even meet people in real life. (Imagine!)

    2. It’s a really good way to bash out a first draft. You’d be surprised how many books on the shelves have been written this way. No one expects a perfect manuscript at the end of the month but an imperfect one gives you something to work with that is far more welcoming than a blank page.

    3. If you are already a writer NaNoWriMo shows you just how much time you squander in a normal month. That half hour you usually describe as “not enough time to write” has a new value. It reminds you that if you use your time wisely you can get more writing done.

    4. Participating also shows you that lots of your regular reasons for not writing are just excuses – I don’t have space (all of a sudden you’re writing on the train or at the beach) or time or you’re blocked (You just write on through that during NaNoWriMo).

    5. It can bolster your spirits. Some years are better than others. Sometimes November hits and you’re left asking yourself “What the heck did I achieve this year?” If you complete NaNoWriMo you can say “Hey I wrote a novel this year.” Lots of people say they will write a novel one day.

    Maybe this November is your one day.



    10/6/2014 10:10:38 pm

    I participated last year for the first time and found the challenge much harder to accomplish than I thought I would…that said, I’m likely doing it again next month…it’s rewarding, and the social aspect of group writing through word sprints is highly motivating. Few events support the “I can do that” motto quite like NaNo.
    10/26/2014 07:32:52 am

    I agree Sarah. I think it takes away a lot of that feeling of isolation we get as writers and it makes you feel like you have people cheering you on.

    Jackie Bouchard
    10/8/2014 12:47:32 am

    Great post! I’m undecided for this year… if I can get some pre-work done then I think I’ll go for it. I did NANO once before a few years back – that messy off-on-many-tangents draft eventually became my 2nd novel “Rescue Me, Maybe”, so would like to do it this time and get a jump on novel #4!
    10/26/2014 07:34:24 am

    I hope you manage to do it Jackie. A messy first draft is always easier to work with than no draft at all. That’s how I look at it. I have a couple of NaNo novels that were not redeemable but others the flow was right and they’ve been published after much revision.

    Anne R. Allen
    10/26/2014 03:31:08 am

    Great tips and links, Monique. I’ve linked to it on my blog today!
    10/26/2014 07:34:49 am

    Thanks Anne 🙂

    10/29/2014 10:39:37 pm

    I’ve not done NaNo, but I do like your reasons 3 and 4. I’m excellent at making excuses. Good luck this year. Sandie (also on the Northern Beaches)
    10/30/2014 09:07:00 am

    Hey Sandie
    I think NaNo is a great way to shake off the bad habits and excuses and sometimes establish some new ones. I also like the write-ins with other authors. Berkelouw Dee Why would be an excellent spot for one (On the northern beaches).

    Julie Valerie @Julie_Valerie
    10/29/2014 11:53:28 pm

    I am so ready for NaNoWriMo this year. I can’t wait! Only problem – I’m moving my family of six into a new house on November 6th. Hhmm… think packing and unpacking a house will put a wrench in my plans? 🙂

    Thanks for these great links and tips. And thanks for linking this to the October Hump Day Blog Hop on my book blog. Perfect timing – as NaNoWriMo starts this Saturday. So exciting!
    10/30/2014 09:08:25 am

    I’m excited too…I usually have a bit more plot thought out than this time it will be fine.
    I think moving house is definitely going to make it harder…you may wish to escape into your writing to avoid the mayhem!! Thanks for having me on the Hump Day Blog Hop.

    Julie Valerie @Julie_Valerie
    10/30/2014 09:31:10 am

    I always look forward to your links on the hop. I greatly appreciate your participation each month. Wonder how our November will go? Wishing you a productive NaNoWriMo, my friend!
    10/30/2014 09:44:53 am

    Thanks Julie…I suspect our November posts will be a blend of angst and enthusiasm.

  • Blog

    Overwhelmed and underachieving on Musical Monday


    Sleeping HippoIs it really Monday again? Did I really not put up a single blog post in a week? I guess that’s two yeses.

    I’m such a slacker! (That’s me in the picture!)

    Lately I’ve had that overwhelmed and underachieving feeling. I get it every now and then and I can’t quite shake it off. Sadly it doesn’t spur me on to do more it just kind of immobilises me.

    Little things and good intentions slip by unattended to, unfulfilled. Opportunities are squandered.

    It is very annoying.

    Maybe it is because the sun is finally out, after an insanely wet winter, but I feel like I started shaking that off again over the weekend. I made a few plans for myself. Plans that don’t require me to work in with others and that I can quietly look forward to.

    I’m a planner by nature, but I’m married to the man least likely to make a plan. His gravestone could read “Here he lies, he didn’t plan to die.”

    Don’t get me wrong I like to be spontaneous but I also like some structure. A girlfriend and I say we like “organised spontaneity”. I’m happy to go off on a whim but damned if I don’t want to take the bus schedule, some snacks, bandaid, some ibuprofen and a jacket just in case.

    Putting a few plans in place both for my work life, my writing and my home life help.

    Meanwhile I’m plugging away at Book 2 in the Upper Crust Series and deciding which book to write for NaNoWriMo in November. It will either be Book 3 in the series or the sequel to Mr Right and Other Mongrels (if you have an opnion, do let me know).

    This song is very much the soundtrack in my mind at least for Book 2 in the series. So it’s today’s Musical Monday offering. And it really is a beautiful song.

  • Blog

    Two 99cent books, writers’ groups and Musical Monday.


    A Fair Exchange - 99 Cent Sale PromoI really am not quite sure how it got to be Monday again. What is happening to 2014? Whoever has control of the handbrake is welcome to pull it now and make things stop or slow down a little bit. I will be totally fine with that.

    Last week I went to an event for writers’ groups at the NSW Writers Centre. My friend Pamela Cook spoke on behalf of our group which was the Writers’ Dozen but these days is the Writers’ Half Dozen. It was a lovely night and really interesting to hear about the many groups out there and see so many enthusiastic writers.

    It was also a sharp reminder of the importance of community and the need we all have to be supported on our journeys. Our little group has had remarkable results in terms of people being published, continuing to write, winning competitions and the other tangible signs of success. More than that though it reminded me what a gift those people and that group have been in my life.

    I’m plugging away on the sequel to Any Way You Slice It, Book 2 in The Upper Crust Series. One of my problems is I have too many ideas and not enough time, and probably discipline, to complete all the projects I would like to. I really must get a working title for that novel. I had one in the middle of the night a couple of weeks back and wrote it down…must find that piece of paper.


    Any Way You Slice It - 99c Sale Promo - Upper Crust SeriesAny Way You Slice It is still 99cents and this weekend until Tuesday A Fair Exchange is 99cents too. If you haven’t read them now is the time and if you have I’d really appreciate a review.













    Musical Monday has rolled around again.

    As I was driving home from the NSW Writers Centre I was listening to a radio show where people call in requests and someone requested American Pie. I hadn’t heard the song in forever and that was a good thing because when I heard it Wednesday I was struck by the beauty and complexity of the lyrics a bit like when you hear or read something for the first time.

    So given I am writing books about pies I thought it was fitting.

  • Blog

    Everything I know I learned on the Internet (well, most of it)


    Laptop and Coffee CupI wish that being an author was as easy as writing a book. That is not to say that writing a book is easy at all, because truthfully it isn’t. How many people have you heard say “I have a great idea for a book” or “I’m going to write a book one day”? How many of those people actually write the book? Not many.

    That’s not the point. If you want to write a book then you sit down and you write it. It might take you years, or even a lifetime, but in the 21st Century that is the easy part.

    These days you need to be a marketing expert to be an author, and it doesn’t matter if you are traditionally published or indie, you still need some marketing chops.

    You need to understand branding, author platforms, SEO, blogging, Tumbler, Twitter and Facebook to name but a few things. You need to be able to set up a website and a mailing list and perhaps even a Street Team. And algorithms – they’re going to come up a lot in conversations. (If you’re anything like me you didn’t become an author because you’re into algebra so yeah, what is an algorithm again?) It’s a lot to take in.

    You may not use all this information but you need to absorb it at the outset so that you can then decide which bits are for you and which bits you are going to run away from screaming. You don’t have to do it all but you do probably need to choose what you do wisely.


    And here’s the really super annoying thing. Just when you think you have it sorted, the rules will change.

    Here’s an example. When I published my first novel Mr Right and Other Mongrels back in May 2012 it was quite a thing to get people to tag your book on Amazon and to like those tags. I’d tag it as chicklit or fantasy or horror and then others liked/agree that the book was indeed in that category. That helped people find your book (visibility) in the Amazon shop. Yeah, that system doesn’t exist anymore. Hours wasted.

    Want another one? I have around 850 people who have liked my Facebook Author Page. That did not happen overnight and it did not happen by accident. That took a whole strategy. That took hours of time. I’m going to presume that at least half those people might have wanted to see what I posted from time to time. In 2014 Facebook has moved the goalposts. Now a mere handful of those people who signed up and said they were interested in my books and ramblings about coffee see my posts. You probably don’t see them most of the time. Now Facebook wants me to pay to send this information to people. And even then it doesn’t reach most of them.

    How did I know I needed to tag books? How did I know I needed a Facebook Author page? The internet. And how did I learn I needed to relearn this stuff, the same way.

    When I published my first book as an indie author I knew exactly NO ONE in real life, who had gone the indie route. I was alone in a big, book-filled universe flailing about for answers. I did pretty well considering.

    I found Facebook Groups to join who have given me advice and helped promote my books. I got myself on Twitter and learned the dos and don’ts of negotiating that space. I have a blog and I know about Price Pulsing as well. (It sounds quite sexy but it’s not.) I have finally got my butt in gear and I have a newsletter mailing list – man I wish I’d gotten onto that before Facebook changed things up.

    It’s tiring for authors these days. Lots of us are sweet, introverted people who like to read and drink beverages of the hot and cold varieties while chatting about said books. We can’t so mostly, they’re just like me and they keep pushing forward and adapting to the changes.

    I’m glad the internet is there to help me. Being a writer isn’t the lonely and isolated pursuit of sitting in a garret it used to be. Though, I will say, despite the success stories you read about (again more than likely on the internet) most authors, both indie and traditional, still struggle to make money.

    Some days I would prefer a return to the old days and but most days I take off my luddite hat and embrace the new opportunities out there.



    9/9/2014 04:34:18 pm

    Wow!! I feel ur pain! I’m so super new to the world of blogging and it’s a major learning curve. Even having groups and communities with other bloggers it’s still all just one huge learning experience. Getting likes, having followers, learning about how to get authors to find u or up find them! It’s really fun, but it’s so much work!

    I tell people, for someone who doesn’t work, I sure am busy all of the time. My family assumes I sit in my room do online shopping or just play all day LOL haha haha. If only. I still don’t know half of what I need to! SEO, that’s super new to me, algorithm NOW U got me scared!

    I do product reviews as well and constantly people want to know how many unique visitors do I have lol. Umm well, I had 3500 page views last month does that count? Lol. Great post!! 😍
    9/9/2014 05:00:22 pm

    I know it does take hours and then you think hmmmm, did I actually achieve anything today?

    SEO is confusing. I think I’m getting more used to that but maybe I’m just fooling myself…;)

    I think that counts btw Jessica.

    Julie Valerie @Julie_Valerie
    9/24/2014 11:54:52 pm

    I couldn’t agree with you more!

    I just finished listening to a podcast about this topic while driving home from a school carpool. On the one hand, it’s great that the traditional barriers to publishing have been lifted, but yes, that comes with a whole host of things authorpreneurs have to do and learn.

    I think Facebook’s decision (post IPO) to monetize their site through advertising was a HUGE mistake for them. Why in the heck would I work my tail off to get “likes” (which I always felt was like being back in high school) when only a small percentage of my “likes” will even see what I post? I often think about posting a good-bye post to my readers on Facebook to announce I’m shutting down my presence there to focus on other things…

    Thanks so much for linking this blog post to the Hump Day Blog Hop (always the last Wednesday of the month). I read with great interest and totally agree 100% with everything you said. Loved it.

    9/27/2014 10:47:02 am

    The whole Facebook situation is ludicrous to me. It has definitely had a massive affect on my book sales. I’m just not reaching people that I used to but I’m certainly not paying to get likes for a page no one sees.

    Thanks for organising the Hump Day Blog, Julie 🙂

    Lori Schafer
    9/25/2014 02:01:30 am

    Sometimes I feel as though being a modern writer is bit like being a parent – a thousand jobs rolled into one. And while it’s beautiful and heartwarming watching your little one learn to walk and talk and ride a bike and one day even drive, in the meantime you still have to change them and feed them and wash their clothes and make them do their homework and yell at them for breaking curfew. Rewarding, but exhausting nonetheless.
    9/27/2014 10:47:54 am

    It does feel like that – every time I release a new “book baby” I hope it will be liked and accepted and find it’s people.

    9/27/2014 05:46:32 am

    I can understand how you feel. I’ve only seriously started taking writing in the past 2 years. Since I’m not the most outgoing person in the world, it is difficult for me to get myself out there where all I want to do is read, watch, write and other individual activities. The amount of stuff that an indie author has to do if they do go the self-publishing route has made me nervous… I’m just trying bit by bit, not trying to rush things.
    9/27/2014 10:49:14 am

    Winfield I think that traditionally published authors find themselves in similar situations now too. They do get support from publishers but smaller authors still need to do lots of the heavy lifting themselves.

  • Blog

    Why did I write Any Way You Slice It, or what do Piper and I have in common?


    Any Way You Slice It - 99c Sale Promo - Upper Crust SeriesUsually when I talk about my books I alwyas say, the main character is nothing like me but we have something in common.

    That’s not true for Piper from Any Way You Slice It and I. well, we are both Australian and we do both have redhair but I’m not sure that’s enough to claim a kinship.

    The idea for this novella came about when I read a popular romance novel with a marriage of convenience in it and it made me really annoyed. In the book the main character went from a successful business woman to a simpering idiot in the space of about a chapter. And I wanted to throw my book across the room.

    Even if you agreed to marry someone for money, which this character had (though no hanky panky of course), simply because you had financial problems that needed fixing and people relying on you financially, that doesn’t mean all over a sudden you would turn in to a quivering spineless puddle of custard, I didn’t think.

    It annoyed the feminist in me. I believe in happy ever after, I just don’t think you should change who you are to get it and so the fact that character did annoyed the snot out of me. How could she be happy if she was compromised? If she wasn’t true to herself it wasn’t going to be a happy life was it?

    I read that book on a Sunday and got up Monday morning and pumped out 5,000 words of Any Way You Slice It. I wanted to write a character who decided to marry for convenience but very much on her terms. I wrote the whole first draft in two weeks and then I sent it to a few readers and they all liked it.

    That’s how this story came to be. My marriage was definitely not one of convenience, in fact my life has been a largely inconvenient one since the day I met my lovely husband, but I suppose what Piper and I have in common is we’re both true to ourselves, we both believe in love and we both can’t quite believe it when things turn out better than we might have imagined.