Ally Blake Romance Author - Blog

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

Wednesday 30 January 2008

more chicklets

We have chicklets!

For anyone who was a regular peruser of this blog last Christmas will know, we have chickens. And last year those chickens had chicklets. Weeellll, this year they've done it again! And yes, yet again we are such suckers we wanted our clucky girls to be happy so we bought the fertilised eggs from a breeder.

Most of these chicklets will end up being frizzles (sp) which apparently are messy looking fluffballs. Eight little honeys have hatched . Two black, three gold, and three hiwte including one with a black spot on its head which my hubby has already named "Mike". No idea why.

We won't know their sex until they crow...or not, so the names will be arbitrary. But that's half the fun. My favourite grown chicken is a girl named Jim.

Yet there is one egg still yet to hatch. We have everything crossed.


Friday 25 January 2008

rolling with the punches

Good day today. I managed to write a bunch of HANKY PANKY. Now that I've found a picture of Ava that resonates with the girl in my head it has become easier.

And I finished the collage for my next Romance. It's funny that I've found full on collaging really helpful for my Harlequin Romances and completely debilitating for my Modern Heats. I'm of the mind that my limited artisitc skills bend towards the "pretty" rather than the "dramatic". Anyhoo, here's Wynnie and Jeremy. I think they are going to be a delight to get to know.

Now I just have to settle on a Working Title. Right now I'm leaning towards, TREATS, TREASURES AND SIMPLE PLEASURES. Watch this space...

Oh, and Bridget discovered her left hand today! She really is such a beautiful time waster that kid of mine...

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Thursday 24 January 2008

hanky panky ensues

This is Ava. the heroine of my current Modern Heat WIP, HANKY PANKY.

And I have to say my Glimore Girls jag is helping form her in my mind. She is the sister of my hero from THE MAGNATE'S INDECENT PROPOSAL and though she doens't make an appearance in that book, she is mentioned. A perennial student off at Harvard. So having Rory Glimore front and centre in my mind is just a bonus.

Though my Ava is a good ten years older, looks more like Amanda Peet and comes from a very different background anything that helps get the creative juices flowing is much appreciated. Especially when one's brain is like cotton wool after my poor little Miss Boo has had a few days of being "unsettled".

This is Caleb. The hero of my WIP.

He is the best friend of the hero of THE MAGNATE'S INDECENT PROPOSAL. I'd like to say that I have needed some kind of equally representative, philosophical, creative mode of inspiration when trying to connect with him. But come on... Look at the guy. God did enough creating for all of us when he built this guy ;).

And speaking of Modern Heat, do keep your ears and eyes open come February as we Modern Heat authors are cooking up some fun and games for you!

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Monday 21 January 2008


My little girl has discovered her right hand.

She'll be lying in bed, or in her little rocker, grabbing onto things like her wrap or her little green hippo when suddenly her waving right arm catches her attention out of the corner of her eye. She will then proceed to stare at the thing, cross-eyed with intense fascination until it skitches out of view again.

Needless to say my hubby and I have been giggling ourselves silly and screaming, "There she goes again!" every time this happens.

As for the left hand? Well that'll be a whole other adventure...


Saturday 19 January 2008

time fillage

So my hubby bought me the complete set of the GILMORE GIRLS for Christmas.

Which is heavenly as there is nothing better to watch on telly while feeding my bub. a) I've already seen the show so I can watch ten minutes here and ten minutes there and not feel like I've missed a thing. b) it's fabulous. and c) it's a mother daughter thing which makes it feel extra special to watch with bub.

This was a truly romantic gift as my hubby can't stand the show. He thinks they all talk too fast, and the same way, and none of the characters can be differentiated one from the other. Which of course is rubbish as they all talk at the perfect pace and they talk the same because they all live in a small town and are friends and that's natural and the characters are pure bliss.

I love the dialogue, wish I looked like Lorelai in jeans, would happily cast any of Rory's boyfriends as heroes as they are all just super dreamy. And the episode where Luke shows Lorelai the horoscope she wrote which he's kept in his wallet since the day they met … Sigh…

Annnnnd we've never seen the last series and a half here on Aussie TV, so as I make my quiet gentle way through season two I am soooo excited about what's ahead. But I will not skip ahead. I will not! And I will not continue watching episodes when Bridget is asleep either. That wouldn't be fair. As she's never seen the series before…

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Thursday 17 January 2008

"new" news

So to add to the crazy round of publicity I've been given over the past weeks, yesterday I was interviewed for New Idea a glossy fun weekly Aussie women's mag. Here's a link for you overseas dudes and dudettes to show you what the magazine's all about.

As all of my interviews have been it was great fun. Jo, the journalist, and Oscar, her boyfriend and photographer, were a riot. They've worked all over the world and had great stories to tell long after I told mine ;).

We took photos with my dog Squiffy, with lots of my books and even with my hubby in a Sinatra hat and cigar. Loooved those ones. Though I was probably laughing too hard for any of them to make it into print. And most excitingly I went out and bought my first post baby new top! Wearing something that hadn't been stretched out by my mega-belly felt all too glamorous.

Watch this space for when it hits newstands across Australia.

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Wednesday 16 January 2008


Wow, I just had a looovely email telling me that MILLIONAIRE TO THE RESCUE has won the Best Harlequin Romance at the Cataromance Reviewers' Choice Awards for the second half of 2007.

This book is doing the rounds right now as it has also been nominated for a Romantic Times Reviewers Choice Award.
I'm stoked! Especially because this was, as Trish Wylie so aptly named such things, a pineapple book, one that hurt a heck of a lot as I gave birth to it. Trish's words, not mine ;).

More winners listed here!

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Tuesday 15 January 2008

pure dumb luck

When reading a new author how should one go about choosing that all important first book?

Do you pick up a book because you like the cover? Or do you make sure to go back to their first ever story so as to live the evolution? Or is it best to go via word of mouth and pick a good one to begin your journey?

My first Nora Roberts was the first JD Robb. Good decision. I loved Eve, looooved Roarke and have had a ball reading the In Death series in order.

My first Janet Evanovich was HIGH FIVE the fifth Stephanie Plum. The fifth. In a series. I have no idea what made me dive in right in the middle, but I'd heard her name mentioned that many times I went to the library and chose the only book there. The fifth. Now this could have confused me no end, but as pure dumb luck would have it the fifth is the infamous cliffhanger book. The one that ends with Steph opening the door to the man she has chosen to jump – is it Joe? Or is it Ranger? We are left with not one clue. Boy oh boy did this make me run out and buy books 1 through 6 so as to find out more and prolong the agony of finding out who the lucky man was.

Then I read my first Susan Elizabeth Phillips novel and couple of years back. A friend had lent it to a friend and I stole it off her before she returned it. FIRST LADY was the tome and it left me feeling ambivalent which normally tells this gal, a gal with too little time on her hands as is, to not go there again. So that random decision to take the book because it was handy might well have meant that I never read an SEP ever again. Well, she is lucky my mum had another SEP on her bookshelves as over Christmas I was looking for something to while away the time and chose LADY BE GOOD.

And boy am I glad.

LADY BE GOOD's hero, Kenny Traveller, a golf pro on suspension, is pure heaven; gorgeous, athletic, lazy, charming, bad boy past, rich, sarcastic, experienced, and did I mention lazy? For a writer to begin a book showcasing the hero's lack of pace, interest, enthusiasm, ambition and yet to make him sexy as all get out, I'm all hers. Lovely secondary characters, appealing heroine, truly fun and inspired circular dialogue that would be at home on the GILMORE GIRLS. And did I mention the hero? I did? Well no wonder. LADY BE GOOD has a keeper.

So have I learnt any lessons from my journey through new authors? Unlikely ;).

Anyhoo, to keep myself honest this year I've joined SHELFARI and will be reviewing this year's read books on my eHarlequin page. So if anybody has any favourite authors to send my way, I'm all yours!!!

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Friday 11 January 2008

xmas, aussie style

I was packing away my Chrissy cards today (I've kept every card ever sent to me...ever!) and I was looking longingly at the beautiful English snowy vista on the front of the card I received from the editors at Harlequin.

It's going to be over 40 degrees here for the next two days in Melbourne, hence the longing...

So even though it's a tad late I thought I ought to show off what an Aussie Christmas in the Blake house is all about.

It's all about opening the bedroom door to find loaded Christmas stockings. There used to once be just two for my sister and me, but now there are six for our partners and bubs. I love that! It's all about wearing gaudy Xmas earrings, and daggy logo t-shirts and dragging mismatched chairs around the tree to open the pressies.It's all about prawns, and soft drink dripping in condensation. It's all about red and green napkins from the colour melts all over your fingers. It's all about poppers and telling the bad jokes inside and wearing the party crowns from within.

And this year it was all about the bubs - Bridget and her cousin Rory. They had a lovely time, well their mums and dads did anyway opening up their lovely pressies. But my fave pic is this one - I call it duelling baby monitors. As we sat out on the deck as we always had in Christmases past, stuffing out bellies with seafood and stone fruit and chocolate, enjoying the light summer breeze, the bubs slept and their monitors lurked behind the flywire screen, discreetly, yet like electronic reminders of how different our Christmase from now on will really be.

Wednesday 9 January 2008


Testing, testing...

My hubby put my TV interview on Youtube, so am hoping I've figured how to embed the thing here for a lookie see for all those souls who missed it and have bugged me ever since!


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Thursday 3 January 2008

a new romance

Okay, so to start off the enw year with good habits, I've started writing my next Harlequin Romance at the same time as I'm writing the Modern Heat book due in mid February.

I used to always write this way so that when one book is finished the next is a third of the way done.

So if Caleb and Ava's sexy reunion romance in Hanky Panky hits a stale spot, I can head on over to my New Romance which so far is trundling on very nicely indeed.

Especially with my latest discovery - and yes I know I am waaaaay behind the times - Richard Armitage at the helm as my new romantic hero. Nice? Yep, nice.

On the right is Wynnie, and on the left...I'm not yet sure. The Armitage Army is out in force trying to help me name him. Too much fun!

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Tuesday 1 January 2008

resolutions, lost causes, and life in general

Okay, so today's the day to make resolutions as to how one's life will be better this year. Better? I'm not quite sure what I would like in order for that to happen as today my life feels pretty darned good.

I could make promises to excercise more in order to lose baby weight in time for my sister's wedding ;) (see chubby cheeks to the left, mine not hers!), to eat less chocolate and more greens for the same reason, to set myself solid writing goals in order to write more than ever before, and to catch up more regularly with old friends and new in the flesh rather than purely on Facebook... But hey, I've been around long enough now to know my peronsality is set. There ain't no changing me! And that's just fine.

'Cause my little place on this globe is a good one. A blessed one. One with a husband I love, a family I adore including a beautiful little nephew I finally got to meet this week, and a gorgeous new baby I am enamoured with. Added to that I am smitten with my job, and am beyond happy living in the beautiful city which I am lucky to call home.

So bring on 2008 with all its newness and potential.
Here's to a big bright wide open year ahead and all it may entail.
Happy New Year!!!