Ally Blake Romance Author - Blog

Latest news from Australian romance author Ally Blake, writer of fun, fresh flirty romance novels.

Saturday 30 September 2006

famous faces

Have you ever been told you look like someone famous? I have been since I was sixteen years old and saw a movie that made one particular actress famous.

And now, when I ought to have been writing, I discovered this website!

To find out what celebrities you look like most, go to and click on face recognition., load in a photo and oila! Instant fame.

How can you not be happy to look like any of these people, though the only similarity I am certain is there is that we are all human, female and looking at the camera ;). I tried several photos - hoping in one I might be compared to Kim Basinger, or Milla Jovovich, or Heather Graham. Alas no ;). But no matter what picture I chose, certain celebs turned up time and again. Alexis Bledel from Gilmore Girls, old time movie star Barbara Stanwyck, and Laetitia Casta who I've never heard of! But the actress I apparently look so much like didn't appear once. Odd...

Truly, if you have a deadline close around the corner, or there are dishes in your sink that need cleaning, or a paper you really must get in tomorrow, then try this instead! You won't regret the time lost. I promise!

Thursday 28 September 2006

long live love

I, like much of Australia, watched Terri Irwin's TV interview last night, the first since her husband Steve's death a couple of weeks back.

I never knew much about Steve Irwin, for he was a much bigger character overseas than he ever was here. Huge in the States, so much so that his passing was headline news all over the country there. To me he was the goofy guy in the khakis with the broad Aussie accent and big smile who said "crikey" alot.

But something that had always sunk in, that played in the back of my subconcious was that he and Terri had a great love affair. For any two people working together, and living together can be hard work. They made it look easy. They made it look fun. And I believe that was because for them it was. For they were in love. Meant to be. And watching her last night, I spent an hour in tears. She was so strong, and so open, and so warm. And giving of moments that she had shared with her husband.

She told of how she thought her evenings would be the hardest as he was the cook and that was family time. But how she feels such a measure of peace, like he is comforting her.

She told of the time he was stricken with grief about the death of his mother and she just sat with him all night with her hand on his heart saying nothing. When he woke up the next morning his first words to her were 'I think you just saved my life.'

And then she relived the first time she went down the rickety, dark, wet, winding stairs to the crock pool at Australia Zoo without him. Without him walking before her as he always went first just in case she fell he could catch her. Doens't that just break your heart?

My heart goes out to her. It truly does. And in a strange sad twist it also made me feel proud of what I do for a living. That I create, and forward and promote the idea that true love is out there for the taking. Terri and Steve proved that every day.

Long live love.

Tuesday 26 September 2006

fourteen sleeps

...until deadline.

This has been my shortest time to write a book ever. Two months from the finsih of my last book. So for some odd reason, instead of relying on old habits I decided to try things differently this time around. These are the three "C's" that I have leant on over the past 6 weeks.


After attending Barbara Hannay's fabulous workshop at the Romance Writers of Australia conference, I cam hom,e with a gorgeous collage. I loooooved it. Loved the feel, the emotion (everyone who saw it said it was so obviously meant to be for a "Romance" novel) the colours, the pictures which gave me lots of nice ideas for small scenes in the book. But I found I couldn't connect with the hero and heroine as depicted. Tricky!

So I went back to basics, and picked one hero pic, one heroine pic, both of which give me a snapshot feeling of what my two main characters are about adn I'm much happier. Though I will definitely collage again, only next time perhaps before the book has begun so I can start from scratch.


I printed out a page for October, listing down every appointment, work shift, lunch date, Pink Heart blog day, football match, babysitting my friend's gorgeous little boy Tom, my hubby's days off and due dates for things like proof edits, dear reader letters and tax. And I have kept track of exactly how many words I have written each day.

This way I can give myself a nice pat on the back when I do well (~5000 words) and a slap on the wrist when I do bad (zilch). Looking back I have started 2 new books and written ~ 30,000 words on this book in the last three weeks. Happy with that!


Okay, so that is nothing new,. though I have bracnhed out in my tastes. As well as my usual classic M&Ms I have been eating nut M&Ms, mint KitKats, crunchies and pink Tim Tams (10c from every packet goes to breast cancer research which I thought was very giving of me).

Sunday 24 September 2006

my space, my pink face

Okay, now did I just mention I celebrated my sixth wedding anniversary a few days ago? Well, keep that in mind as I regale you with the events of my day.

A couple of days ago I signed up to a My Space account. I've heard that name bandied about a bit, including on Australian Idol the other night, and I thought Maybe I ought to have a web presence on there for my books and stuff.
So I loaded up my basic details into an account, posted a piccie from my website with plans to look into it all more when I have some spare time.

And then today I received some messages. From young men. Wondering when I would like to meet them for a romantic dinner, or a chat, or show them around as they are coming to my home town in three weeks time. Oh god!!! Is that what My Space is really all about? I'm asking! Seriously!

I tell ya, I laughed until I cried. Belly laughter. The kind of laughter that you can feel in your toes. The kind that gives you hiccups and a sore throat and makes you feel as though you are going to faint if you don't stop right now. I'm an old married woman for goodness sake!

Anyhoo, I'm off now to delete my account now before any other poor souls fall madly in love with me ;). Though thinking about it now, once I have my book away I will have some time up my sleeve to show someone around my home town...

Thursday 21 September 2006

the six year twitch

Yesterday was my sixth wedding anniversary!

I can't believe it was one hot September night six years ago that we married in Las Vegas. I can still remember the breakfast I had (champagne and a chicken salad from the Luxor), painting my sister Suze's toenails, walking out into the hotel hall and seeing my hubby coming out of his room so I had to duck back inside at light speed!

Hubby and I went out for dinner to celebrate. We originally had plans to try somwehere local but when he walked in the door after work and said "Let's go to St Kilda" I was all for it!

At 9 on a Wednesday night the place was still buzzing. All the strip shops were open, bookstores, hairdressers, funky boutiques and yes, the French pastry shops! Nicola Marsh blogged about St Kilda recently on the Pink Heart Society so check on over to see some glorious photos of this fab spot.

One of our favourite places in the whole world is a restaurant/bar called Greasy Joes. Think wooden floors, a huge shiny wooden bar, red leather booths, and large ceiling fans pushing hot air about the room. In summer it is a haven from the heat. A place for tourists in tank tops and shorts, or sarongs over their togs, or fancy St Kilda locals in their boho best to come and have a Corona with lemon and a bowl of chips.

And the name of the place doesn't disapppoint. It's not the kind of place where you want to order a salad!!! I got my usual burger with the lot and my hubby had beer-battered fries. Delicious!!!

So next up for us comes the seven year itch. *Insert eerie music here ;)*. Or as my hubby so delightfully says each and every year without fail, "We've had a good run. Maybe it's time to call it quits." Charming right? No wonder I write romance novels!!!

Monday 18 September 2006

my dog the herald

The dog woke me up this morning.

For a tiny little dog Squiffy has huge ears. Bat's ears really. She can pick up sounds no other creature on earth could possibly hear. She can hear the word "walk" from three rooms away. She can hear a dog on the television even if it is asleep. She can hear the sound of an M&M being put into a person's mouth (I think she learnt that one from me).

And this morning? This morning as the sane world slept, from beneath her three layers of blankets wrapped tight around the cocoon she had made for herself at the end of my bed, she heard a van pull up, a little man walk up our grass lawn and drop a small box at the front door.

By the time I checked the peep hole there was no evidence of said man, but knowing my dog's ears as I do, I opened the door and checked. And oila! A package! For me! With the hardcover copies of my January release MEANT-TO-BE MOTHER.

What a lovely surprise, especially since I adore the cover to bits. It's set in tropical Cairns with a party girl flight attendant heroine and a goooooorgeous single dad cabinet maker, and I think the feel of the cover is just lovely.

Though maybe next time the delivery guy can come a couple of hours later in the day, then my world would be an even happier place!

Friday 15 September 2006

I have a title!

My first ModEx will be released in April 2007 in the UK as GETTING DOWN TO BUSINESS. I looooove the title. It is set in and around the offices of a new men's magazine so the title is apt. And very sassy methinks!
I've posted an excerpt on my website if you would like a lookie see...

now while we're getting down to business...

Anybody out there about to start a new book, check out Trish Wylie's blog. She is currently runing a step by step guide as she writes her next ModEx. So far she has mapped out the hero and heroine, so it's not too late to join in the fun!
Nicola Marsh is hot on the trails of her new Alpha hero. So anybody in the mood for tall, dark and handsome types head on over to her blog. And then Natasha Oakley has been given the happy job of nominating a film to the Pink Heart Society hall of fame. Go check out which favourite it is!!
And don't forget to check out the Pink Heart Society on Saturday where I will prove that romance and sports do mix!!

Monday 11 September 2006

aaahhhh hugh...

Today Trish Wylie nominated Hugh Jackman for the Hero Database for the Pink Heart Society.

Excellent choice, we all must agree. He is charming, gorgoues, can sing and dance and act and smiles like he has no fear of wrinkles. And loves his wife to bits which is by halves wonderful and depressing ;)..

Though many of us are lamenting that our fave Hugh pics are not up among the several gorgeous ones she in the end did choose to share with the Pink Heart members. So here are a couple of new ones I have just found which have indeed inspired the beginnings of what may turn out to be my next ModEx!


Saturday 9 September 2006


Australian coverI was hoping to be able to share a title with you all today - a beautiful, sexy, fabulous title for my first ever Modern Extra Sensual novel. But alas, Trish Wylie has the same editor as me and she so rudely took up all of said editor's time by making her read a book in need of no revisions, and buy it within 48 hours! Grumble, mumble, thanks for nothing Trish...

Anyhoo, if you would like to read more about my book which comes out in the UK in April next year, I've put up an intermin page on my website here!

Now, come October, the very first batch of these very books will reach Australia and New Zealand under the Sexy Sensation imprint. These books are FANTASTIC! Funny, sexy, sassy, smart, charming, hot and absolutely wonderful.

The first two to hit down under are
Wife For a Week by Kelly Hunter - the funniest book I have read in ages! - and The Cinderella Project by Kate Hardy - a book I wish I had written myself. Check out those covers. Wowee!

Please buy them online now, or wait until October and buy them at your local bookstore. You won't regret it!

Friday 8 September 2006

do you love dirty dancing?

And I do mean the movie!

If you do, come along and have a natter about it at the Pink Heart Society where I spill all about my love of this film.

About how it changed my life. Made me cry. Made me want to be a dancer. Made me want to wear shoulder pads in public and cut my hair. Made me believe in true love...

Come tell us what you love about Dirty Dancing!!!

Monday 4 September 2006

oh no... not again!

Okay, so I have a book due in a month. My word count is humming along nicely. I love the storyline, and I just adore my heroine Brooke! She is stubborn, strong and sassy. A yummy mummy with a core of steel.

Now, here's the kicker. Somehow I have hit the same point I did when writing BILLIONAIRE ON HER DOORSTEP. My hero Danny is shifting and changing before my eyes, fading and floating away, not as sharp and definite in my mind as I would like for him to be. The last time this happened Trish Wylie and I almost came to fisticuffs over my use of her darling Nathan, and though I wouldn't want to go there again - * shiver * - I need help!

First I started off with the gooooorgeous Josh Duhamel from Las Vegas and Tad Hamilton fame.

I have become a Las Vegas groupie over this last season and it has a looot to do with this guy. He is sexy, funny, and sweet as apple pie. Just when you think butter wouldn't melt in his mouth he says or does something that makes your cheeks burn at a hundred degrees!

Next, while at a collaging seminar with Barbara Hannay, I found this picture of Harry Connick Jr.

I love this guy. I own all of his CDs have seen him in concert and could watch him in interview for the rest of time. He is charming, witty, smart as a whip and a gentleman to boot. and in this picture I think he is more mysterious and experienced looking than Josh.

But still, even with this guy in mind, Danny is as illusive as a puff of smoke.

Then yesterday I found this picture of David Beckham in a magazine.

Forget the high pitched voice and the scary wife. The guy is beautiful. And in this picture I love his hair, his mouth, his stubble, his leanness, his clothes, and I especially loooove the look in his eyes. Unsettling don' t you think? Doesn't it make you want to look away, or look back forever? There is a gleam. An understanding.

So what do you think? If you were to fall in love with a smart-talking, charismatic sports agent which one would he be? Of course I could always go to the Pink Heart Society Male on Monday page once a week and find inspiration enough to burn out my eyeballs, but remember this thing is due in a month!

p.s. I make no promises to listen to any of your advice, heck I may even go as far as to ignore it all completely but I'm hoping that it might shove me in the direction I need to go!

Saturday 2 September 2006

my lucky stars!

What a day yesterday!

First spring hit Melbourne warm and mild. Cherry blossoms are taking over in our backyard, reminding me of our trip to Washington DC a few years back. Cool, pale and lovely.

Next I spent a lovely morning chatting to my good friends
Nicola Marsh, Trish Wylie and Natasha Oakley as we watched the mega-launch of our new blog, The Pink Heart Society bloom into life. There is so much love and warmth and excitement you can feel it leaping off the screen. If you haven't yet been, go now! It is a warm and fuzzy haven for lovers of series romance novels. And it is going to be so much fun!

In the afternoon I checked my bank account to find I had been paid! (Okay so maybe that one I could have kept private, but it's always such a nice feeling when one's advance appeares and really it did truly add to the wonderfulness of yesterday, so there it is!)

And then, to top it all off last night I found out that I had sold my first ever Modern Extra! This comes right on top of my recent workshop about writing sexy and sweet so it seems my confernece notes worked well for me. Have a read to see if they sort out some things for you too!

If any of you have been following the progress of 'Alpha' then you know that it was one of those wonderful books that just flew from my fingertips. Half of it wrote itself in one week and the rest I enjoyed pottering on in between writing another book, attending the Romance Writers of Australia conference and while off my head with the flu.

It was a total pleasure to write. I adored the set-up, felt so much for Abbey the heroine and as to Flynn our hero? Humona humona... Hmm, not sure if I can create the same ambience ever again though without hanging around a lot of sneezing people!

Soooo, my first ModEx will hit the UK shelves in April next year at which time I will likely panic that anybody is reading such a sexy book of mine!