Category Archives: Personal

Rest in peace, Peter (Rabbit) Lehmann

It’s a sad time for our family right now. My grandfather, Peter Lehmann, passed away yesterday (28 June 2013) at 82 years of age. Known as the ‘Baron of the Barossa’, Peter lived an extraordinary life. He entered the wine industry when he was 17, and over the next 30 years, became one of Australia’s leading winemakers and most loved personalities. There are plenty of articles online about that side of Peter at the moment, such as: The Australian article and Herald Sun article.

But I wanted to reflect on who Peter was to me – never ‘Granddad’ as he wasn’t a fan of that title; to me, he was always Peter Rabbit. We lived in different states, so most of my memories of him are from the many Christmases my family spent in the Barossa, full of amazing food and (as I got older) wine. I remember playing countless card games with him when I was young and I’m glad he never let me win – I had to earn success.

As I grew up, our relationship matured into mutual love and respect, and both he and his wife, Margaret, have a very special place in my heart. I’m sad that he didn’t get to meet his first great grandchild in person, but happy that technology let him ‘meet’ her on screen.
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Both he and Margaret read The Big Smoke (my first book) and said it was ‘a damn good read’.  It felt wonderful to get such great feedback from two people I admire and respect so much.
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Tonight, to honour Peter, my husband, Mark, and I decided to open a bottle of Peter Lehmann wine that’s been maturing on the shelf for years – a 2002 Mentor. It’s been a long time since we’ve had to use a cork screw. Mark had a bit of trouble with the cork, and when he finally got it out, red wine sprayed all over him and the kitchen.
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“Looks like Peter had the last laugh,” I said. And I could honestly imagine him looking down on us at that moment, having a good chuckle. He always had a great sense of humour.
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Here’s to you, Peter Rabbit.  You’ll be dearly missed.
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Sailing, bookstore news and the NA Crush Tournament

Sailing

Guess what I did last week? I took a four-month-old baby sailing. Doesn’t that sound like a great idea? No? Turns out you’re right. Little Mackenzie wasn’t a huge fan of the open seas, but seeing as we booked the holiday with friends eighteen months ago, we gave it a good crack anyway.

Despite Mackenzie’s misgivings, we had a great time overall. It’s hard not to enjoy yourself in the middle of the beautiful Whitsundays!

Bookstore news

Moving on to book-related matters, The Big Smoke is now available to buy in two bricks-and-mortar bookstores! It’s a wonderful feeling to see your novel for sale at your favourite bookstore (Avid Reader, West End), on the same shelf as one of your favourite authors (Nick Earls).

The Big Smoke for sale at Avid Reader bookshop

The Big Smoke for sale at Avid Reader (third from the left).

New Adult crush tournament

NA Crush Tournament banner

The fabulous NA Alley team has announced they will be holding the very first NA Crush Tournament! What does that mean, I hear you ask. It means that heroes from the New Adult genre will battle against each other for the crown of ‘best New Adult crush’.

Seb

Seb – a worthy contender for the NA Crush Tournament?

NA Alley will post the official rules of the competition next Tuesday (4 June), when nominations for crushes open. I’m looking forward to taking part in the competition (and just between you and me, I’m also hoping that someone might nominate the hopeless-yet-loveable Seb from The Big Smoke).

Your turn

Would you take an infant sailing? Who’s your latest literary crush? Anything exciting happening in your world that you’d like to share?

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Filed under New Adult fiction, Personal, The Big Smoke, Writing

First post for 2013: Insecure Writer’s Support Group!

Insecure Writers Support Group Badge

“Let’s rock the neurotic writing world!” Alex J Cavanaugh

Wow, can you believe it’s 2013? Christmas and New Years have come and gone, and I’m now 38.5 weeks pregnant!!  For the last Insecure Writer’s Support Group post, I spoke about being worried that my novel, The Big Smoke, will disappear into a cloud of oblivion when bub comes along and I stop promoting for a while. I got some lovely comments on that post, including a great reminder from Cherie Reich that the book will be around for a long time, so it always has a chance to find its audience. That’s the beauty of online retailers – there’s always a chance for your book to become the next ‘overnight success’.

So, to be honest, I’m not nearly as concerned about my book’s sales over the next period as I was a month ago. I’ve done a fair bit of promotion since I launched the book, and hopefully, sales will continue to bubble away on their own now. If not, I won’t be losing sleeping over it – because I probably won’t be getting that much sleep anyway! Not with an infant to care for! 🙂

Here are some photos from Christmas of the bump…

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I’m hoping not to disappear completely from the blogosphere once bub arrives. But rather than posting regularly, I’m hoping to spend my online time  hanging out at your blogs and continuing to follow and support your journeys. I can’t wait to see what 2013 brings for everyone!

Also, I’d like to open this blog up to guest posts from my regular followers – no point in a good blog staying silent! So if you’d like to guest post on the amazing Cally Jackson Writes, let me know and I’ll get my people to talk to your people! 😉

Your turn

How was your Christmas and New Years? What’s occupying your mind at the moment? Any insecurities? Would you like to guest post on Cally Jackson Writes?

PS You can find out more about the Insecure Writer’s Support Group at Ninja Captain Alex’s blog.

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Filed under Insecure Writers Support Group, Marketing, Personal, Publishing, Self publishing, The Big Smoke, Writing

A shining spotlight, a bumpdate and a Goodreads giveaway of The Big Smoke!

A shining spotlight… 

The wonderful Juliana Haygert has been kind enough to shine her author spotlight my way. Have you ever wondered what my nicknames are? Or maybe you’d like to know what I’m working on now? All is revealed in Juliana’s Author Spotlight!

Bumpdate 

It’s been a while since I’ve provided you with a bumpdate (read: pregnancy update), and seeing as I had my baby shower on the weekend, I figured now was the perfect time! I’m now 32.5 weeks pregnant and feeling a lot less mobile than usual. I had a wonderful baby shower on the weekend and have exactly 16 days of work left before I go on maternity leave (not that I’m counting ;)).

My ankles are swollen, I’ve been getting heaps of practice contractions, and I only have to walk 100 metres to feel like I’ve climbed a mountain, but all in all, everything is going really well. Can’t wait to meet our little girl!

A Goodreads giveaway!

On my travels throughout the blogosphere, I’ve heard many indie publishers say that Goodreads giveaways have helped them gain exposure for their books and generate excitement. So I figured: sounds awesome, I’ll jump on the bandwagon and give it a try!

This means I’m giving away two paperback copies of The Big Smoke to two lucky Goodreads members. If you’re keen to read The Big Smoke but haven’t had a chance yet,  make sure you enter the giveaway by 14 December (it’s free!).

Goodreads Book Giveaway

The Big Smoke by Cally Jackson

The Big Smoke

by Cally Jackson

Giveaway ends December 14, 2012.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

How about you?

What’s happening in your world? Have you ever won a book from a Goodreads giveaway? Have you ever run one? What was your experience? Do share! 🙂

P.S. Next Tuesday will be one month since I launched The Big Smoke into the world. To mark the occasion, I’ll give you an update on what I’ve learnt so far since launching – no holds barred! Stay tuned…

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Filed under Competitions, Personal, The Big Smoke, Writer interview, Writing

The date is set… for my cover reveal!

Yes, that’s right. The date you’ve all been waiting anxiously for has finally been decided (well, the interim date before the REALLY big date of the book launch). The cover for my debut New Adult novel, The Big Smoke, will be revealed on … drum roll… Wednesday 26 September! Only 25 sleeps to go!

To whet your appetite, I’ve included two slivers of the cover in this post. If you’d like to be part of the biggest cover reveal this year (hey, a girl can dream!), let me know in the comments and you’ll go in the draw to win prizes, such as my eternal gratitude and never-ending friendship. In fact, every entrant is guaranteed to win both those prizes. Could this get more awesome?! I think not!

In other news, baby-girl-in-tum is growing nicely, and Mark (beloved) and I are having all kinds of fun coming up with possible names. There are some front-runners but we don’t have a firm winner yet (and if there was, it would be a secret!).

Your turn 

Any guesses about what’s featured on the cover based on the slivers? Would you like to be part of the cover reveal? Have you seen any truly awesome covers recently?

P.S. Thanks to those who have already said they’d like to be involved in the cover reveal. I’ve got your names saved and you receive an extra large dose of gratitude!

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Filed under Marketing, New Adult fiction, Personal, Self publishing, The Big Smoke

Weighted (book launch) and Weighty (bump-date)

Weighted

Firstly, OMG! Have you seen the cover for Ciara Knight’s newest book, Weighted? If not, it’s on the right!

Here’s the blurb…

The Great War of 2185 is over, but my nightmare has just begun. I am being held captive in the Queen’s ship awaiting interrogation. My only possible ally is the princess, but I’m unsure if she is really my friend or a trap set by the Queen to fool me into sharing the secret of my gift. A gift I keep hidden even from myself. It swirls inside my body begging for release, but it is the one thing the Queen can never discover. Will I have the strength to keep the secret? I’ll know the answer soon. If the stories are true about the interrogators, I’ll either be dead or a traitor to my people by morning.

How awesome does that sound? Can’t wait to read it! If you’d like to know more, you can read an excerpt or just go right ahead and buy it from Amazon for $2.99!

Weighty

Yesterday was a very exciting day. I had my 19-week scan and learnt that the bub in my belly is a little girl. I can’t wait to meet her! Well, actually, as she’s only 300 grams (less than a pound) right now, I’d probably prefer that she cooks for a bit longer first! Want to see some photos of her? Of course you do!

      

And here’s some photos of my growing bump…

In my natural habitat

Dodgy selfy!

Your turn

Do you plan to read Weighted? Anything exciting happening in your world? Feel free to tell me how gorgeous you think my baby is! 😀

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Filed under Personal, Reading, Writing

Some very exciting personal news!

I’m skipping today’s Insecure Writers’ Support Group post to bring you some very, very exciting news. This has nothing to do with writing but I simply MUST share this news with all of you!

I’m…. having a baby!!!!!!!

Baby Jackson

That’s in my belly!

Considering how impatient I am, you can only imagine how hard it’s been keeping this news a secret from most of the world for the past couple of months. But we’ve finally passed that magic 12-week mark, so now I can shout it from the rooftops!

This means that in the next 12 months, I’ll have two babies entering the world – my book baby The Big Smoke and an actual human baby! Things don’t get much more exciting than that! EEEEEP!!!!!

I’d love to get some suggestions for names from you all – I’m looking for something a little bit different but not too out there. Let me know if you have any ideas. 🙂

P.S. Don’t forget to support insecure writers!

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