Two pieces of exciting news today:

1. It’s BOOK TRAILER time! The incredibly talented folk at Random House have created this trailer for Chasing the Valley. I’m absolutely in love with this video and I hope you guys enjoy it too:

2. Today is June 1st, which means only ONE MONTH until Chasing the Valley is released! Woo hoo!

Today I caught a glimpse behind the scenes by visiting the Random House Australia warehouse. Thanks to Janine for inviting me and giving such a fascinating tour. It was so exciting to see all the huge machinery and boxes of books. Amazing to think that Chasing the Valley is currently stored there!

Click any photo in the gallery to enlarge:

It’s time to reveal the back cover of Chasing the Valley! Apologies for the poor image quality; I just scanned a physical copy of the book. (Click image to enlarge.)

chasing the valley back cover

Since there are a few quotes on the cover, this seems a good time to thank the RH Book Buddies for your lovely reviews. My publisher could only fit three quotes onto the cover, but your comments were my first real feedback from impartial readers and I was truly touched by all your kindness and enthusiasm. Thank you!

Today my author copies of Chasing the Valley arrived! I wasn’t sure whether to shriek in excitement or burst into tears* so I settled for making an animated GIF of the unboxing. As you can see, my dog was keen to help.

chasing the valley skye

Next week I’m visiting the Random House warehouse, where many more copies of Chasing the Valley are waiting to be shipped off to bookstores around Australia. Just over a month to go!

 

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*If reality TV has taught me anything, it’s the obligation to sob hysterically when a lifelong dream comes true.

random house supanova standYesterday I was lucky enough to attend my first pop culture convention: Supanova in Melbourne. I spent the day with the awesome ladies at the Random House stand, admiring the passing costumes.* Many thanks to Sarana for inviting me; it was a terrific day!

As you can see in the photo, there were quite a few Chasing the Valley posters at the stand, which was incredibly exciting (and a little overwhelming)! I met so many great people, including the lovely Jess and James: winners of the VISA competition. I also signed their ARCs of Chasing the Valley, so the occasion doubled as my first ever book signing.

Book One is now less than eighty days from release, so I hope to have some more news soon… and maybe even a book trailer!

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* For more pics of Supanova, check out Dark Matter’s gallery: http://www.darkmatterfanzine.com/dmf/supanova-2013/

Today the postman left an amazing surprise on my doorstep:

chasing the valley ARC
Yep. That’s an ARC (Advanced Reader Copy) of Chasing the Valley. The white bar on the front cover says it’s an “uncorrected proof” and “not for sale”.

This is the first time I’ve held my book in my hands. It’s not just a Word document or a printed stack of pages. It’s a BOOK! This is one of the most exciting milestones in my publishing journey so far.

More title news! The name Star-shine has been dropped and Book One is back to its original title: Chasing the Valley.

The manuscript is heading off to the typesetters, so it should soon resemble an actual book.

Despite its previous status as the title for Book One, Chasing the Valley is now officially the title of the series. Book One will be called Star-shine.

I’m thrilled by how the publication process for Star-shine is coming together. Editing is almost complete and cover art is coming soon!

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I’m excited to announce that my debut YA fantasy novel, Chasing the Valley,* will be published in July 2013 by Random House Australia. A sequel will follow in 2014.

Chasing the Valley follows a gang of teenage fugitives on the run from their king’s hunters. It’s a tale of magic, betrayal, pickpockets, secrets and quite a few explosions.
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* Title likely to change.