Wednesday, 6 April 2011

My First Book Giveaway - on my own blog!

Baragula Book Three, Justice at Baragula, is coming in May! The edits have gone back to the publisher at last, the book is currently being formatted for proof editing and is scheduled for release in early May.
I have written other series before this, but it wasn't until I was doing these last edits I wondered if I have given away too much of the stories in the first two books.

This means I should be encouraging readers to make sure they have read them first. To start with, between now and April 27th, I would love to give away a copy of Book One, Return to Baragula, to anyone who is a follower of my blog and also leaves a comment.

This first Baragula book was published in 2008 and Book Two, Outback From Baragula, in 2009.
These are my first longer inspirational romance novels after the five Harlequin Mills and Boon category medical romances (1994-1998), and contemporary and historical inspirational romances published by the American publisher, Barbour Publishing, in their Heartsong Presents Book club (1993-2002). All except one book were later in two Barbour 4-in-1 volumes under the titles Australia (2000) and Australian Outback (2003). The novella in Australia, Search For the Star, was first published with three other stories by different authors in Christmas Dreams. Do check out my website - still needing updating though, I'm afraid! 

Many folk have asked me where "Baragula" is. Sorry, readers, it is a fictitious town set in the real area north-west of Sydney, not far from the Barrington Mountains to the east of Scone in the Hunter Valley. I do have a scene in the hospital in Scone and along the real road from Scone through to the Barringtons.

Many folk have also asked me, "Where do you get your ideas from?" For most of my books I simply have to say, "I really don't know - or remember where the germ of an idea originated from." So what about that first Baragula book? Let me say first of all that when I wrote Return to Baragula I had no idea of it becoming Book One in a series!

Australian readers will know that at the end of the school year in Australia, many thousands of teenagers completing their last year of High School before Tertiary education or entering the work force descend on various places around Australia to celebrate. We lived in the Hunter Valley in New South Wales when our seventeen year old daughter completed her final Higher School Certificate examinations. Several of her friends travelled to celebrate at the Gold Coast in Southern Queensland. While they apparently had a great time there, I have to confess feeling a little relieved our daughter did not go as she was preparing for twelve months overseas as a Rotary Exchange student. Years later my writer's brain clicked into gear. That simply means I started to ask many "What if?" questions about a Christian teenager who joined a School Bash party at the Gold Coast. The result was the prologue in Return to Baragula and the "ripples" that affected many others in Emily Parker's life for many years.

Book Two and Book Three are not sequels as I understand them but more "spin-offs" about characters you first meet in Return to Baragula. Over the years I have introduced minor characters in my stories and then later decide I just have to write their stories also!
Emily Parker and Doctor Matthew Davidson have their story told mainly in Book One. Then in Outback From Baragula, Matthew's sister, Jillian Davidson and one of Emily's friends, Steve Honeysuckle, have to survive many dangers out in western NSW on her family's cattle station.

In Return to Baragula I introduced Madeline Honeysuckle and the local policeman, Bradley Hunter, who obviously had some history between them. I just  had to share their story in Book Three, due out this coming May! I enjoyed creating an odd outback character - a kangaroo shooter - in Book Two so much he just had to appear again to help Brad and Maddie try to bring a criminal to justice in the final book in the series - well, right now I think it is the last in the Baragula series!
But there's another story, other characters trying to tell me their stories in outback Queensland in a manuscript I'm writing I've tentatively called Her Outback Cowboy. A young woman returns to her old outback home from America after many years growing up in Texas. When still a teenager, she had been wrenched away from her father and her beloved home in the outback.
Hmm, but then there's that Dream series I would love to finish. It is still evolving from my second Heartsong book, Damaged Dreams!

Enough of that! Lets get back to Baragula!
Apologies to my overseas readers, but this time I am limiting this giveaway of Return to Baragula to Australian and New Zealand readers only. And why? Well, Justice at Baragula is going to be released later as an e-book!  My publisher, Ark House Press, has told me it will be one of their first books also released in print AND an e-book. I am also anticipating the other two books will also be available later as e-books.

Of course that means more giveaways in the future!

And there's still more! Book One has had a few changes since that first print edition. I realised Book Clubs and Study Groups were looking for Questions for Discussion included in Christian Fiction books. All my three Baragula books now have them, including the latest version of Return to Baragula which will be the book sent to the winner of the draw.

And yes, I will have another giveaway here later for Outback From Baragula too. And then of course there are my husband's two devotional books, then BookThree in the Baragula series as well, then...?

Please don't forget to leave your name and email contact details - or if your prefer, send them privately to me at 


  1. Mary, I would love to receive a copy of your book. I love reading what you and Ray are up to. My email is Thanks for all the lovely work you do and the inspiring comments on fb. Petra Mantje

  2. WOW! i would love to be in the running to win a copy of your book. (tswcann @
    I love the cover of the first book. The lone girl looking down a dusty and empty road. It is soooo outback Australia! *GRIN*

  3. Thank you Petra and Danielle. They were very fast comments and so very encouraging!

  4. Oh me too! I love this book. I could give this copy to a friend. Keep writing Mary. I am looking forward to reading all of the others you have talked about in your blog post now :)

  5. Sooo looking forward to the new one! And I'm very excited to know the kangaroo shooter - Eddie isn't it? - is making another appearance. (I'm not after a copy, I've already got the first two.) XXOO

  6. What a writer always loves to hear: "I love this book." Thank you so much, Nicole!
    So glad someone else besides me likes dear old Vietnam Veteran Eddie, Amanda. Being a writer yourself you may understand when I admit I don't quite know where he came from and how he crept into the story! My brother has told me stories of some eccentric outback characters over the years that he's either met or heard about. I was not too sure what overseas writers would think of a "professional kangaroo shooter" though!

  7. Hi Mary,
    I would love to be in the draw to win a copy of your book.
    I am a follower and always enjoy reading your blogs.

  8. Thank you so much, Mandy! When Wednesday comes around, especially when I am very busy I often find it hard to stop other writing projects to publish a blog. I do appreciate your encouragment you enjoy reading them! Do you have any suggestions of topics you would like to read here - would be much appreciated.

  9. Hi, I follow most willingly. Do you have a newsletter? You are a new author for me - always exciting to discover new reads.


  10. Sorry I don't have a newsletter, Marybelle, but I do try to keep my readers up to date on Facebook and this blog. I also blog on International Christian Fiction Writers. Thank you for following and the comment!

  11. Hi again, Mary,

    To answer your question - I really enjoy anything that is writing-related - How you as an author are inspired and how you develop your ideas. And just sharing your daily walk is always interesting and encouraging.

    Thank you.

  12. Hi Mary I would love to be a follower but I cant find a link to become a follower. HOw do I do this.
    I would love to read your book.

  13. Im a follower now would love to read this book.

  14. Thank you for preservering when my Follow page wasn't working, Jenny!

  15. I sent this to my other post but to make sure you all know - Mandy is the winner of Return to Baragula! Congratulations and thank you to everyone for your comments.