Tuesday, March 20, 2018


The Gorilla Picked Me

Children’s Picture Book
Date Published: Spring 2018

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Olive felt ordinary. Always last to be picked for teams at recess and never a Valentine placed on her desk. Olive blended in. Until one day at a daddy-daughter dance, the dancing gorilla picked her from the crowd!

He scooped her up and twirled her around the dance floor. Olive's soul sang! THE GORILLA PICKED ME is a fun, sentimental story that reminds little girls that they are all worthy of attention.  No little girl is ordinary! 

About the Author

Michele McAvoy is an award-winning children's picture book author. Her debut picture book MY SUPERHERO GRANDPA received a 2016 Moonbeam Children's Book Award. Michele grew up in a small town in northern New Jersey until she moved to New York City where she attended NYU and law school. Michele enjoyed the crazy, busy, single life of New York for over 15 years until she got married and had her first child.

With a small one bedroom apartment and a baby that did not sleep, Michele moved back to her small hometown. She settled back to her roots and traded in the noisy city streets of NY and extra dirty martinis at trendy bars for manicured lawns and backyard BBQs. When she's not being a lawyer or a mom, Michele writes uplifting, whimsical stories to help children understand and respect their emotions. You can see more about Michele and her books at www.michelemcavoy.com

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Monday, March 19, 2018


by Kim Hotzon

Interview with Freelance Writer & Musician Dhruba Das Roy

“Oh God, why me?”

This is perhaps what we think of when we go through a ‘breakup’.
This story is about Anirudh and Anvi.
Both of them have their own thinking which are not alike.
The story begins with Anirudh meeting with and accident. As he slowly succumbs to the pain, he starts reflecting about his bygone college days where he found his love for music. He loves Anvi dearly who is a long-lost friend of Anirudh.
The story reveals how Anirudh struggles as the hands of reality strikes him down.

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1) What inspired you to write this book? 
I just wanted to express myself and writing this book was the best possible way of reaching the people. My thought process in the novel might not even be very well accepted and I would really appreciate that, but I would like say that this is my first novel and the emotions that are linked with this novel are very genuine for me.
2) How long did it take you to write the book? 
Almost around 2 years of hard work. It was a long process and I did not wish to hurry with it as it is my first novel. 
3) Coffee or Tea? 
4) Describe your special writing place 
I still haven’t found one. Currently I am just a part timer who works as a software engineer during the day and writes stories during the nights. But I would really love sitting by a beach, listening to the sweet melody of the sea and writing my heart out.  That would be a dream come true.
5) Are you a plotter a pantser?
A bit of both I guess. I like to keep certain things in mind while writing a story or depicting a character, but then again a lot of improvisation is done once the story or the character comes to life which is not at all planned.

About the Author:

Dhruba Das Roy  is a freelance writer, a musician by passion, and a software engineer by profession. He is from Assam, but born in a small town of Meghalaya, where he finished his schooling. He then obtained his degree in engineering from the esteemed college of National Institute of Technology. He discovered his love for music there and was the lead vocalist of his band, “The Rozarts”.

He loves rock and roll and is a great fan of the pioneers of rock and roll-(Pink Floyd, Led Zeppelin, Queen and the list goes on).Unfortunately, as engineering life came to an end, the band had to split. Recently, he moved to Kolkata where he is working in one of leading software service based companies in India.

Not everyone can put their thoughts into words. Dhruba had never tried his hand in writing; but he had an experience, an experience which changed his life for the better. Being a vocalist, his only way of expression was through the creative way. He decided to pen down his thoughts and he discovered that writing came naturally to him. His thought process in the novel relates to the general mass in many ways. He decided to stretch his limits and ended up voicing his thoughts in a different way this time.

Friday, March 16, 2018

Lucknow by Annie Hall Blitz

Women’s Fiction
Date Published: February 2018
Publisher: Threekookaburras

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When Rosie's marriage suddenly ends one night in Sydney, nothing makes sense any more. She doesn't know what to do next. Her sister, Juliette, suggests she come and live where she is — in Lucknow,  a town in Central Victoria, that they knew in their childhood. It doesn't seem to offer much at first. But her life changes in ways she had not thought possible. Lucknow isn't just a romance, it's about life in a small country Australian town.

Praise for Lucknow:

"Heartbreak, comedy, tragedy, farce, romance, secrets, even love. Annie Hall lifts the lid on the way things are in this Australian country town with the beguiling name of Lucknow." — Carmel Bird


While Hamish was being minded by Mrs Pickett for a couple of hours, Juliette and Rosie grabbed their bathers and headed out to the old reservoir. It was the perfect time for a swim, the sun had real warmth, the wind held its breath, there was a clarity of light in the air and the fragrance of eucalyptus and spice. The old reservoir shimmered and sang with bird calls that afternoon. Save for two fishermen sitting on the levee wall mute and still as statues, Juliette and Rosie had the place to themselves. Near the water’s edge they baked on bare rock like lizards, their towels rolled under their heads for pillows. Juliette lay on her back staring at the sky while Rosie lay on her front gazing at the water.

‘I heard about your quiet night at the pub,’ Juliette said. ‘Jade said you were announced on stage as single. Really putting it out there, aren’t you Rosie? Next it will be an ad in the local paper.’

‘I had no idea Eloise would do that,’ Rosie said. ‘It was so embarrassing.’

‘You don’t know the half of it,’ Juliette said. ‘If you heard what they were saying about you.’

‘Like what?’

Juliette looked at her sister, and didn’t want to hurt her feelings. ‘It’s a wonder you weren’t raffled off like a tray of meat.’

There was a pause.

‘Eloise grew up here. People know her, they don’t know you. You’ve just arrived.’

She looked at her sister, always slight, like a teenager in her blue bikini with yellow buttercups. She didn’t look strong enough to have had Hamish or gone through a torrid marriage breakdown. She is tougher than she looks, Juliette thought. If she didn’t physically show signs of suffering she must have felt it somewhere. But where did Rosie feel it? wondered Juliette.

‘I know I’ve just arrived, Juliette,’ Rosie said, yawning. ‘To another age, it seems, as well as another place.’

‘In Lucknow, you must take care,’ Juliette said earnestly. ‘Gossip spreads faster than a virus, it’s more invisible than hepatitis. It just floats around and somewhere decisions are made about you, your reputation is decided. It might not be the truth but it is what will pass as the truth.

‘You will be stuck with it. And, and,’ Juliette said, warming to her point, ‘it will be very hard once your reputation is fixed to change it. It will stick with you no matter what you do. If people find that you vary from your reputation then they will find it curious, but they won’t disbelieve the gossip.’

Rosie thought about what Juliette was saying. ‘If people can’t distinguish the truth from gossip then why is their opinion of any value?’

‘They only know what they hear,’ Juliette said. ‘You need to take care.’

The smooth grey rocks were hot beneath their bodies. Rosie felt sweat beginning to trickle and the water looked invitingly cool.

‘I’m going in,’ she told Juliette. ‘Race you.’

As warm and brown as a bottle of beer in the shallows, the water was chilly and fizzy as champagne at waist height. Rosie dived under and came up tingling with shock at how cold it was. Juliette was already ahead, arms and legs slicing cleanly through the water. Rosie set off like a threshing machine, churning the water white as she overtook Juliette and raced the one kilometre to the other side. She stood in the shallows, her ribs heaving and subsiding as she gasped for air, her body bent, head down near her knees, eyes swimming with red, brain nearly blacking out from a lack of oxygen. Juliette came up behind her, the water draining off her body in silvery rivulets and watched her sister.

‘You always push things,’ she said, casually. ‘You always go too far.’

About the Author

Annie Hall has worked as a journalist in country towns as well as Sydney and Melbourne. She lived for a number of years in the Goldfields area of Victoria.

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