Second Book Syndrome: A Brilliant piece from Guest Blogger Rebecca James

Bestselling author Rebecca James has bared her soul in this exquisite and brutally honest piece about the battle of the writer against the blank page.

Sweet Damage is my second book and second books are so notoriously difficult to write that this very difficulty has a condition named after it: Second Book Syndrome.

I initially started another second book. It was called Cooper Bartholomew is Dead.  I won’t go into the details but for various reasons I stopped writing Cooper after a year of work and started on Sweet Damage.

The point of telling you this is so you understand that by the time I started writing Sweet Damage I had a much worse condition than plain old Second Book Syndrome – I had second Second Book Syndrome.

In February 2011 – by which time the deadline for my second book had well and truly passed – I wrote a detailed synopsis for Sweet Damage. Once my agent and my publishers had read and approved it, I made a crazy promise. I said I’d have it ready in 2 months. Continue reading

Craig Harper, author of Pull Your Finger Out, answers Ten Terrifying Questions

pull-your-finger-outThe Booktopia Book Guru asks

Craig Harper

author of Pull Your Finger Out

Ten Terrifying Questions

1. To begin with why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself – where were you born? Raised? Schooled?

I was born in the thriving, bustling metropolis of… Ballarat. I am a needy, attention-seeking only child. I was raised in Tasmania, rural Victoria and various suburbs of Melbourne. My family moved a lot. I think my parents were trying to avoid the law.

2. What did you want to be when you were 12, 18 and 30? And why?

At 12, I wanted to be skinny. I was a fat kid. A whopper, in fact. At 18, I wanted to be a bodybuilder, gym owner and chick magnet. All very unlikely outcomes. At 30 I wanted to be less tired and stressed because I was a gym owner, coach and teacher who worked way too many hours. Continue reading

Because of Low by Abbi Glines – a Review by Haylee Nash

To say that I’m excited by the emergence of New Adult as a genre is a gross understatement. I’m ecstatic. And I’m not picky about the kind of New Adult, either. Because New Adult comes in many forms  – from erotic romance featuring late teens/early twenty-somethings, to angsty, edgy love stories to heartbreaking coming of age novels. For those of you who aren’t entirely sure what New Adult is, if it features people 17+ experiencing their ‘firsts’ (first love, first heartbreak, first time having sex or taking drugs etc) and features romance, then it probably sits in the New Adult genre.

So, now that you’re up to speed, let me introduce you to Continue reading

Five Books that Changed my (Writing) Life: From Guest Blogger Berndt Sellheim

This selection comes amidst the usual caveats about exclusion and reductiveness: what I’ve included are books that crossed my path at the particular instant I needed them, or was open to them, and as such made a significant impact.

This is not a list of ‘best writers/books’, or even a list of ‘favourites’. It’s overly weighted towards the US, and there’s a sorry lack of Australians; but it’s a big world of books out there, and we all find them at different times and places, so… Continue reading

Nikki Gemmell, author of I Take You, visits Booktopia

Last week Booktopia was lucky enough to have Nikki Gemmell in to chat about her latest novel I Take You and sign some copies for lucky customers. I Take You completes the trilogy of books that began with the worldwide bestseller The Bride Stripped Bare.

We also filmed a short video with Nikki, with our own John Purcell trying to think of an idea for the video and Nikki…..well…..you’ll have to watch it.

Continue reading

Benjamin Percy, author of Red Moon, answers Ten Terrifying Questions

The Booktopia Book Guru asks

Benjamin Percy

author of Red Moon

Ten Terrifying Questions

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1.    To begin with why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself – where were you born? Raised? Schooled?

I was born and raised on the West Coast, in Oregon, on twenty-seven acres of big pines, firs. We had a hen house, a vegetable garden, fruit trees. My father hunted all of our meat, so we often ate venison, elk, bear. I had a kind of Huck Finnish freedom to my childhood. I could escape the house early in the morning and return at night without much in the way of supervision. So I spent my days wandering the woods, ducking under fences, firing slingshots, building treehouses and dams. Living a life of the imagination. Which turned out to be good training for the novelist I would become.

2.    What did you want to be when you were twelve, eighteen and thirty? And why?

Continue reading

The Australian Book Industry Award Winners announced

Booktopia was the proud major sponsor of the 2013 Australian Book Industry Awards in Sydney on Friday night, celebrating the best in Australian Books. M.L Stedman continued her award-winning run by running into some award wins, including the big prize of the night, The Booktopia Book of the Year Award.

Check out all the winners below, along with links to all the books shortlisted on our site. Enjoy!

Continue reading

The 10 Hottest Men on Romance Covers

10 tasty reasons to browse the romance section

Following my successful, and contentious, blog post on the 10 hottest men in romance novels, I thought it only fair to share the 10 hottest men on romance covers. I know it’s Friday and you have tasks to complete before the weekend begins: perhaps you’re trying desperately to remain focused at work, putting the final touches on a presentation that you won’t get credit for; or maybe you’re cleaning the house, which has somehow become a cesspit of mould, dust and dirty laundry, in readiness for a visit from your mother-in-law, who will no doubt still find your housekeeping wanting. Regardless, I’m going to lead you astray for a few moments to cast your eyes on these delicious morsels of male because you, dear reader, deserve it.

Continue reading

Hazel Hawke passes away, aged 83

Such sad news to hear Hazel Hawke, one of the most energetic advocates for women’s rights and education has passed away aged 83.

She was much more than the ex-wife of the former Prime Minister Bob Hawke.

Mrs Hawke was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease in 2001. She announced it publicly on the ABC series Australian Story in 2003 and gradually withdrew from public life.

Her daughter, Sue Pieters-Hawke, became an national campaigner for dementia awareness and in 2011 released the beautiful biography, Hazel: My Mother’s Story.

Continue reading

Annie Hauxwell, author of A Bitter Taste, answers Ten Terrifying Questions

a-bitter-tasteThe Booktopia Book Guru asks

Annie Hauxwell

author of A Bitter Taste

Ten Terrifying Questions

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1. To begin with why don’t you tell us a little bit about yourself – where were you born? Raised? Schooled?

I was born in Hackney, East London. My family emigrated to Australia when I was 14, and I finished my schooling in the southern suburbs of Melbourne. I’ve spent most of my adult life travelling backwards and forwards between London and Australia.

2. What did you want to be when you were 12, 18 and 30? And why?

At 12 I wanted to be was far, far away from where I was, and preferably somewhere I was rich and glamorous . I can’t remember wanting to be anything at 18, except drunk or stoned, and at 30 I wanted to be an academic. What a come down.

3. What strongly held belief did you have at 18 that you do not have now?

Continue reading

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