Weekend Writing Warriors: Outback Promise - the acceptance

It’s great to be back here with the Weekend Writing Warriors. If you want to read more excerpts from other writers, click on the image above or on this link here.

My novel, Outback Promise, is a story of the tragic loss of a child. It explores how the ensuing grief drives two loving people apart. After a few long years of separate coping and more than a few mistakes, Grady has held out an olive branch to his wife Rosalyn. He proposes they run away together, seeking the magic that once held them strong.

I was stalling, not wanting to give him an answer too easily. I sighed heavily. ‘Don’t get too damn full of yourself when I tell you I can get the time off. I’m in.’

Grady half-swallowed a whoop of triumph, closed the distance between us in two long strides and kissed me. For the first time in years it felt right to be there, sheltered in his arms. I told myself to live in the moment.

He whispered, ‘We’re going to have a ripper of a time. You’ll see.’

With that declaration I knew he wanted more than my agreement, he wanted my enthusiasm. The rain was subsiding almost as fast as it started and I thought how there was just enough of it to make a mess of everything. It would turn the dust into mud and spike the humidity to an unbearable level.


Outback Promise

Tragedy. Betrayal. Hope.

‘I can’t remember the last time a book affected me this much,’ Tess Woods.

After losing their only child, Roslyn and Grady Balfour's lives are destroyed, shattering their perfect marriage. When Ros discovers Grady's infidelity, it sets their love on a destructive downward spiral. Grady hopes that three months camping together will rekindle what was lost so long ago. 

Attempting to repair their broken marriage, Ros and Grady set out on a journey of self-discovery and redemption deep into the Australian outback. Packing resentment and bitterness along with them on their quest, the couple struggles with what they've lost. Forced to battle the challenges of the other travelers along with the dangers of the harsh outback, their only chance for survival lies in facing the secrets of the past. Will Ros and Grady find a way to hold onto each other when everything else has fallen apart?


4.4 stars out of 5 – 39 reviews – Amazon.com

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What happens when the music stops?

This is my last Saturday morning in Sydney. The sun is shining in a cloudless sky. It’s time to go for a walk along one of the stunning nearby beaches. Maybe stop for coffee and listen to the lighthearted banter of the locals enjoying their heavenly city.



But first a blog. Normally my blogs are about writing. This time I’m reflecting on the past five months in this sunburnt country.

The highlights of this trip have been:

  • Standing in a vast gorge (Windjanna was my favourite) or on a wide outback plain, feeling tiny and insignificant in the grand scheme of things. At the same time I felt more connected than ever with the universe.

  • The constantly changing scenery. From towering forests to wild coastlines to dusty red roads, Australia is a dramatic country.

  • The fabulous animals, from the marsupials to the reptiles but above all, the birds. We’ve seen emus and brolgas, parrots, lorikeets, cockatoos, pelicans, and flocks of wild budgerigars. And hundreds of raptors in the drought-ravaged outback.

  • The brilliant outback night sky where the stars spread out like diamonds on velvet, unsullied by the light pollution of cities.

  • Driving hundreds of kilometres of empty highways with the man I love, with time to think, sing, laugh, and listen.

With my Australian-set novel Outback Promise being released by HarperCollins on 1st November 2015, this adventure became more significant than ever. It renewed my affinity for the sun-flattened plains and how the silent endless horizon heals the soul.

Often the pace of our travel compelled us to move from one place or another before we realized its true heartfelt significance. But isn’t that life itself? How many golden moments sift through our hands like sand, only to be appreciated in retrospect?