Mary books

Tuesday, 21 September 2010


This week I thought I’d tell you a few things that have been happening here to my husband and I. As well of course, there are those other plans for another trip to the Australian mainland in November.
But first of all, I received a lovely photo sent to me by a lovely fellow writer – and a clever photographer – from the RWA Conference at Coogee beach in Sydney. Had to share this one with you!
Remember, if you click on a photo on my blog posts, it will enlarge and be clearer.

The two writers on the top of the left cube are Cathleen Ross   and Kandy Shepherd who organised the RWA conference this year. The writer beneath them is Kylie Griffin, this year’s Golden Heart winner. Also on that cube are Kerri Lane with Sandra Allan. The photos on the cube on the right include Barbara Hannay and Anne Gracie next to me, and underneath us are Kandy Shepherd, Nalini Singh and Christine Stinson. The other side of the cube is from the “Goal, Motivation, Conflict” Friday session  with Debra Dixon of America. Many thanks to clever Robyn Aldridge! She has called this RWA Sunrise Cubes

And so, RWA conference and the other speaking engagements in New South Wales in September are behind me. Now we are planning for more speaking appointments in Queensland in November! I will be on a panel about “Reaching out for God through fiction” and doing a seminar workshop session on writing romance at the Word Writers Fair in Brisbane area. The award dinner for the CALEB book contest organised by the Omega Writers is on that same Saturday evening, November 6th.
And I have been thrilled today to learn that my Return to Baragula and Outback From Baragula have been short-listed in the Fiction category! Whoopee! There are also encouraging reviews of the books on the CALEB page.

Do click on the Word Writers FairOmega Writers and CALEB and you should go to the websites to read all about these events, including the full list of other great books that have also been short-listed in all the categories.

Don’t forget to make sure you let folk know about the Word Writer Fair so they can register ASAP. I believe places are filling already so register NOW! I am so looking forward to sharing with writers at the seminar and then being a tutor for the Omega mentorship live-in programme the following week.
And if all this isn’t enough excitement for one trip, arrangements are being made for me to share with writers as well as readers of Christian fiction at the Toowoomba library. Will post more information about that event later.

And how are we travelling to Qld this trip? We studied the plane and car hire fares carefully, compared them and other expenses with the only other way to leave our beautiful island. We also need to take books with us and have space to bring books back too! So we are now booked on the Spirit of Tasmania, the ferry that sails overnight across Bass Strait to Melbourne. We will be taking our time driving –and I’ll try and remember to take photos to share with you.

Would love to hear if there is any chance I will be able to meet any readers of my blog – somewhere between Tasmania, Victoria, New South Wales and southern Queensland!

Thursday, 16 September 2010

Mediatation Moment

For many years now, my darling husband has put up with me while I am concentrating, trying to find that right word, that right phrase, that right scene to entice the reader to turn that next page.
Now Ray also needs me to try and give him space - and non-interrupted times to write. Afraid there are too many times my tongue forgets and blurts out words that do interrupt him, and yet he remains his usual courteous, patient self.  Perhaps his thoughts here will make you too pause awhile, consider what it is really like sometimes for writers!

The ‘W’ Infection.

Who knows from whence it comes?
Who can tell whom it will bite?

What will be the affect of the infection?

I don’t know! Others might, but I don’t.

This I know, I was infected by the ‘W’ bug. Since then, over many years, I have suffered untold recurrences. Sometimes these have developed at most inconvenient moments. There is only one remedy -Write!

For me, the ‘W’ infection is discernable by the compulsion to write articles, (not novels - that’s my wife’s infection.) devotionals and Bible studies. In many ways I enjoy being infected by the big ‘W’. Words on paper are seeds waiting to germinate in the mind of the reader. Words can lie around for years in dark, forgotten places then spring to life when found by an inquisitive mind. Depending upon the intent of the writer such ‘seeds’ can produce moral and spiritual weeds or gorgeous flowers. The sown seeds can bring death or life, sickness or healing. No seed is neutral.

As a Christian and a preacher I write from a Biblical faith perspective. Initial expressions of my ‘infection’ can be found in the Churches of Christ NSW journal archives. There are other areas as well which would be revealed upon request. The big ‘W’ took hold in the 1970’s when the director of J.E.W. (now David House Fellowship) came to the church. He invited me to write for his magazine, ‘The Vineyard.’ I did this for nearly 30 years.

As I reflect upon this unrelenting obsession, I know Jock Hunting was the ‘carrier’ of the infection. Is it an illness? Maybe it’s a curse to some but to me, or any writer, it is a love affair with 26 lead soldiers.

Whether I’m published or not is of no concern to the infection. The ‘W’ fever simply must find expression in writing. The rest is up to the editors, printers, booksellers, readers and, dare I say, God!


Must go!

I’m feeling the infection level rising again.

Hoping you are the same!

Raymond N. Hawkins.

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Still Catching up!

Hard to believe I've now been home over a week and it is actually two weeks since my last post here. Sorry folk! I will try to at least post once a week in the future.

I had a very busy three weeks away and was glad Ray joined me for one weekend. We celebrated the 30th church anniversary of a church we planted all those years ago. Sorry, was so busy talking and having fun at the Saturday night dinner didn't take any photos. At the Sunday morning service, Ray was privileged to be able to dedicate the baby of a young woman we watched grow up over the years. As a teenager she had a very tough time but now happily married and  a mother for the first time!  While Ray was with me we also went to a Rotary Reunion of the club he was a member of - and received a Paul Harris award from also.There are too many photos to share here so I will try and put them on my facebook page - hopefully tomorrow!

And so you can see that as I mentioned in my last post, my time away in New South Wales was a wonderful time of meeting old friends and enjoying fellowship. The Theme was "Looking Beyond yourself" at a Newcastle & District Womens' Retreat where I was the main speaker. The camp site's data projector had broken down and eventually one was brought so I could use the power point presentation after all! Was too busy to think about taking photos that particular day but here are some of the women after dinner in the evening. Can you see our "colour" theme was mauve?

Old friends worked hard for us all!

And then there was that jigsaw. Yes, we did get it finished although the owner waited several minutes on the last day!

And old friends from the Maitland Church of Christ.

After the RWA conference and the church anniversary, I so very much enjoyed staying with Lance and Karen - and also their dogs.  You can see how they kept me companny when my son and daughter-in-law were at work!

However, it also made me weary, and there hasn't been much time here to relax since arriving home. A team of students from the Worldview (W.E.C.) Bible College in Launceston had been here for a week helping our small church plant with ministry. Ray had been hosting two young men for a week before I arrived and we enjoyed having them over a two week period. All except one of the students came from Korea.

And now it is school holidays here this last week and grandchildren to help mind! 
So, more next week... er... in between preparing for the next trip away to Queensland early November at the Word Writers' Fair and being a mentor for the Omega Writers programme. Any of you registered yet for these ventures?