Another of those quick updates

I know…it’s been a long time between posts.

My life has been its usual craziness between my day job and working on the new book, but I thought I’d give a quick update on a couple of things.

Firstly, the new book…
My publisher, Michael Heyward at Text Publishing, gave it a lovely mention in a recent edition of Bookseller & Publisher, so I can now tell you it’s called The Undercurrent and it will be release in August 2017. As I’ve said before, it’s a totally new story set in a near-future Australia and is a stand-alone novel.

In other news, the Turkish translation of Burn is available, with a stunning cover design. Here are all four books in the series (in order):
10915288_919531344747805_6540803074086022022_n Haze_Turkish cover Turkish Shimmerburn-turkish-cover

My favourite reads this year include (click on each for my thoughts on Goodreads):

jaclyn cath-crowley kirsty chris-currie melina

I’ve also been lucky enough to read a draft of Vikki Wakefield’s new suspense novel Ballad for a Mad Girl (due out in March 2017) and can tell you that it’s spine-chillingly awesome.

I’ve also been watching:

hell_on_wheels_ver4_xlg

queen-south westworld the-walking-dead-season-7_0

(Jury is still out on whether I’m going to see out this season of Walking Dead after that first episode. I may not forgive the writers for that one.)

Okay, that’s it for me for now.

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Thoughts on reactions to Burn…and what comes next

It’s been a big month for the Rephaim series, with the fourth and final book, Burn, released in the US and Canada (following its release in Australia and the UK in 2015).

It’s been gratifying to see the continued love for the series, and its conclusion, over the past 12 months.

One thing that’s fascinated me has been the reaction to the revelation of what happened between Gaby and Rafa all those years ago. (No spoilers.)

For me, the event itself warranted a strong reaction from Gaby (trust and respect are critical in any level of relationship ). But as important, is the way she – and Rafa – react to it. They deal with it badly: a total lack of emotional maturity, despite the number of years they’ve lived and their long shared history. And their response has serious ramifications for the people they care about, many of whom make bad decisions because of pride and ego.

The Rephaim series, aside from the sword fights and sexual tension, has always been about the complexity of relationships (family, friends and lovers) and what it might take to heal the rifts between the Rephaim.

A big part of that is owning mistakes. For me, writing the series has been an exercise in taking each major character to a point where they have to make choices about whether they can do that or not.

Whats next for me?

Since Burn was released in Australia last year, a number of bloggers and reviewers have asked for/suggested a spin-off series. I love that readers care about these characters and this world so much.

While there is resolution to the big questions of the series by the end of Burn, I never intended to wrap up the story in a neat bow, mainly because life doesn’t work like that. And maybe I wanted to give myself an opening to return to that world at some point in the future. I’ll admit, there are characters who fascinate me and stories still to be told.

BUT.

Right now, I have other characters and other stories I want to explore. One of those stories is a stand-alone novel that’s been contracted by my Australian publisher, Text Publishing, and will be published in 2017. It’s speculative fiction, is set in Australia, and is probably best described as a YA thriller. I’m writing the final chapters of the first draft at the moment and it’s a tad intense.🙂 I’ll be able to share more in coming months (title, synopsis, release date etc.).

North American blog tour

A massive thank you to the generous bloggers who participated in last week’s North American blog tour for Burn. And a huge shout-out to Sylvia Chan at Tundra Books/Penguin Random House Canada for again coordinating it all.

Here are the four covers of the North American editions (with unique taglines for each book that you won’t find on other editions):

As always, the Talking With Tundra blog has recapped the blog tour beautifully, so this time around I’m going to totally cheat and replicate the summaries and links from that site:

Monday 13 June 2016

  • “I don’t get to binge read books too often anymore, but this book demanded that I not leave it for too long.” – Lee at Rally the Readers
  • “If you have the option of reading the entire series (Shadows, Haze, Shimmer, and Burn) this summer, do it.” – Jillian at centre of the universe: the dreaming
  • “Everything was there – the crazy climaxes, the shocking secrets, the angsty arguments, and the steamy smexy scenes – and Burn was a finale I couldn’t pass up for anything.” – Michelle at Undeniably Book Nerdy

Tuesday 14 June 2016

  • Burn has cemented the Rephaim series as one of my go-to recommendations for anyone who is looking for an action packed story with multi-layered characters and relationships” – Lynne atWords of Mystery
  • “Answers! We finally get answers in the conclusion to the Rephaim series. Woohoo!” – Laura atIf It Has Words
  • “Paula Weston delivered – a kick-butt female protagonist, sizzling sexual tension, and action-packed battle scenes. Burn has everything that Shimmer offered and more.” – Leanne at Author Leanne Dyck
  • “If you like a series filled with kick butt characters, swoony males, slow burn romance, and action I would definitely check this one out. The Rephaim Series is one of my favorites and the books just got better and better as I read them. I highly, HIGHLY recommend this series.” – Crystal atBookiemoji

Wednesday 15 June 2016

  • “The entire Rephaim series comes highly recommended from me. I dare you not to become addicted from the very beginning of Shadows to the end of Burn.” – Lauren at Love is not a triangle
  • “But two chapters in, I knew I was going to have a life-long relationship with Paula Weston’s Rephaim series.” – Joy at Joyousreads
  • “The prologue in Burn is powerful and I feel like it really set the pace for the rest of the book. It was captivating and Paula Weston was daring you to stop reading. ” – Krystal at Krystal’s Stellar Book Blog

Thursday 16 June 2016

  • “While all the other books tended to leave me on a cliff at the end, this one wrapped everything up fantastically. All of the questions I had were answered and I had plenty of Gaby and Rafa swoons.” – Jaime at Fiction Fare
  • “My heart couldn’t stop racing, fueled with adrenaline and fear whenever the Gatekeepers were near. I raced through Burn, desperate to discover what would happen next, even as a part of me screamed to read slower, knowing it meant another page closer to the end. Paula Weston’s Rephaim series comes to an epic, action-packed finale with Burn! I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.” – Liz at Midnight Bloom Reads
  • “The story is just brilliant. I have said that with each and every installment and this last one doesn’t disappoint at all. It was filled with so many twists and turns and I just loved every minute of it! Paula Weston is a genius and I have to say this series is by far the best angel/demon series I have ever read and I can guarantee nothing will ever come close to it. Yes that is a bold statement but I mean it with every fiber of my being. The Rephaim series is pure perfection and is amazeballs!!” – Crystal at Winterhaven Books

Friday 17 June 2016

  • “I can’t believe it’s over! I’m not ready to say goodbye to these characters. Not even Mya.😛 I’m pretty damn satisfied with this conclusion…with the answers we got, with how the memory loss happened and how it was resolved, with who the Rephaim are and what their purpose is. That said, I don’t often read spin-offs but I would SO read one set in this world.” – Jen at The Starry-Eyed Revue
  • “I’m completely new to this series. I wish I wasn’t so late to jumping onto The Rephaim fandom because I would have loved to gush about each book with readers as they released.… I loved, loved, loved, loved, LOVED, the character growth/development with Gaby, Jude, and Rafe. Especially Gaby!” – Patty at Bookish Wanderlove

Thank you all again.

Burn blog tour promo

Shimmer in North America – thoughts from the blogging world

Huge thanks to the bloggers who participated in the North American online tour for Shimmer this week – and of course to Sylvia Chan at Tundra Books (Penguin/Random House Canada) for bringing it all together.

This time around, each tour stop features a review of the third book in the Rephaim series. Here are links to each, in the order in which they were published.

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

The good news for US and Canadian readers is that the release of Burn (Rephaim #4), the final book in the series, is now only three months away.🙂

Shimmer_BlogTour

Shimmer out this week in US/Canada (Burn not far away either)

Shimmer (The Rephaim #3) is out in the US and Canada this week, with Burn (The Rephaim #4) to follow in June.

My North American publisher, Tundra Books (part of Penguin/Random House Canada) has done something a little different with the covers, adding new taglines to each book.

Here’s the entire collection:

On Monday, the North American blog tour for Shimmer kicks off.

You can find the full list of bloggers here.

Shimmer_BlogTour

For those of you who have been patiently waiting for these final two books in the series, I hope you enjoy them!

Life

The last time I posted here, we’d just launched Burn in July 2015. There’s been more than six months radio silence since then and I thought it was probably time I briefly explained why.

On 5 September 2015 my Dad unexpectedly passed away due to health issues. It was devastating and all-consuming. My Mum, who is frail and elderly and has her own health issues, immediately moved in with my husband and me.

The past few months have been all about in-home care (can I just say that Blue Care staff here in Queensland are wonderful people), residential care waiting lists, navigating the aged care system, hospital stints, and significant lifestyle changes.

I’m working full-time, and my wonderful husband has been there for Mum when I can’t be. It’s been a steep learning curve for all three of us, and we’re still right in the middle of it.

In the meantime, I’ve also been working on a new novel. Obviously progress has been much slower than I’d anticipated, but it’s steadily coming together. It’s under contract with Text Publishing and is scheduled for release 2017. It’s a stand-alone novel with a slight spec fic twist (totally unrelated from the world of the Rephaim).

Shimmer and Burn are set for paperback and ebook release in North America this year (Shimmer on 8 March and Burn on 7 June), and Shimmer will also be released in Turkish (in Turkey) later this year.

Life is full of unexpected twists and turns – joyful and sad. For fear of sounding like a footballer in a post-match interview, we’re taking it day by day, moment by moment.

My beautiful picture

Here’s one of my favourite pics of my Dad, taken a few years ago when he and Mum were still caravanning.

IMG_2341

Here’s Mum belatedly celebrating her birthday after a two-week visit to hospital.

A few photos from the Burn launch

As you’ll see from the photos below, I had an awesome night when Marianne de Pierres and I launched Burn at Riverbend Books in Bulimba with another of our annual chats.

We had a great crowd and the buzz was fantastic. Thank you again to Marianne, the team at Riverbend Books (especially Vicky, Pauline and Lachlan), Text Publishing (especially Steph Speight), and everyone who came along and made it such a great night.

PanoramicAnd I got to meet fellow Brisbane writer Christine Bongers🙂

11667472_10153125663124495_3552003894058998912_nSome more shots from the night:

 

Thank you

Finishing The Rephaim series has left me feeling a little reflective and contemplative, so please indulge me for this post. There are a lot of people I want to thank for being with me on The Rephaim journey. I think I did a reasonable job in my acknowledgements at the end of Burn, so I thought I would re-post it here.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

Five years ago, I was frustrated and disappointed over yet another writing rejection – the Weston_Shadows-TheRephaim-Twitterlatest addition to a fat folder. To cheer myself up I started working on something for fun. That scene turned into the beginnings of Shadows and an outline for the four-book Rephaim series. Less than a year later, my agent Lyn Tranter pitched the series to Mandy Brett and Alison Arnold at Text Publishing. They liked it and I was offered a contract. After all those years of writing and rejection, the thing I had wanted for so long happened ‘just like that’.

10915288_919531344747805_6540803074086022022_nSince then, the series has been published in the United Kingdom, North America and Turkey. I’ve been a guest at writers’ festivals, a writer-in-residence at high schools, participated in blog tours, met lots of wonderful readers online and at events, and read countless reviews of my work (good, bad and otherwise).

I’ve rubbed shoulders with many of my favourite writers and met others who have since joined that list. I’ve chatted and shared book recommendations with a great bunch of dedicated bloggers and reviewers who do what they do purely because they love to read. The young adult writing community in Australia is quite possibly the most welcoming, supportive and friendly writing sector in the world today, and that’s been one of the greatest discoveries of all.

Haze__coverI still have a day job. Few people tell you how tough it is to earn a living as a writer. I’m just grateful to be in print, and especially grateful for publishers like Text Publishing who are still willing to take risks. There are plenty of writers out there who are where I was five years ago, so I take nothing for granted.

This is the fourth and last book in the Rephaim series, and there are plenty of people I need to thank.

Text Publishing: my editor Mandy Brett, for caring about a story filled with angels and Text Publishing coverdemons. I’m well aware of how lucky I am to be able to work with you. And the entire team at Text, especially those I’ve worked with the closest: Anne Beilby, Alice Cottrell, Steph Speight, Alaina Gougoulis and Shalini Kunahlan.

Orion/Indigo Books: my editor Jenny Glencross and senior publicity manager Nina Douglas.

Tundra Books/Random House Canada: Publisher Alison Morgan, Editorial Director Tara Walker and Publicity Manager Pamela Osti, as well as Val Capuani. Special thanks to Publishing Coordinator Sylvia Chan, for always going above and beyond.

Alison Arnold, for being there from the start of this series and whose influence still guides my writing (and inspires me to try to write beautiful sentences).

Rebecca Cram (Place), for nearly three decades of friendship and encouragement – and providing helpful feedback on an early draft Burn.

Michelle RBurn_Text Publishingeid, fellow YA book nerd, for providing outstanding attention to detail at draft stage and again in the home stretch. (Thanks too for the ‘arse’ conversation!)

Tony Minerds: my brother who can spot a typo at fifty paces. This time around he got a chance to find them before we went to print. Thanks bro.

Vikki Wakefield, a gifted writer who I’m proud to call friend, for feedback and candid conversations that help me feel like I almost know what I’m doing.

Marianne de Pierres – a multi-talented writer, friend and mentor – for invaluable advice and much appreciated support.

My family and friends, many of who had never read anything even remotely resemblingShadows_Text Publishing_2015 urban/contemporary fantasy before this series came along, for taking the time to read every book and make appropriate noises of enthu- siasm. You guys rock.

My amazing friend and business partner, Heather Scott, for her friendship and unwavering belief in me.

Mum and Dad, for their overwhelming love and support in all aspects of my life.

Murray, for knowing me better than anyone else on the planet, and for still being beside me twenty years on. And last, but most certainly not least, all of you – readers, bloggers, reviewers, booksellers and librarians – who have picked up the Rephaim series. There is no writing career without you guys. Thanks for being a part of this adventure.
I know the Rephaim series isn’t going to change the world, but I’ve loved writing this story and these characters—and they’ve certainly brought an amazing new dimension to my world. For that, I will always be grateful.

All things Burn (so to speak)

This is it, the day the fourth and final book of the Rephaim series steps into the wild. Australian readers get to have Burn first, with the UK edition releasing on 5 August (the North American edition is out next year).

There’s a lot I want to say about this series and my journey to get to this point, but I’ll save that for another post in coming days. This post is all about the launch, signing events and other bits and pieces you might be interested in.🙂

The launch – 2 July 2015.
There’s still time to book if you’d like to be part of the Burn launch. It’s at Riverbend Books in Bulimba, Brisbane, on 2 July. It’s a free event, and open to everyone – you just need to book by 26 June. Huge thanks to the wonderful team at Riverbend Books at Bulimba for hosting all four launches, Text Publishing for making these launch events possible (in every sense), and to my friend (and award-winning writer) Marianne de Pierres for again officiating. Here are the details:

Burn invite

Signings
I’ve been fortunate to have the support of a host of wonderful booksellers, particularly in and around Brisbane. The following stores will be hosting me for signings over coming weeks. Come say hi!

Dymocks Chermside
Westfield Shopping Centre
Chermside, Qld
27 June 2015, 10.30am

Angus & Robertson
Riverlink Shopping Centre
Ipswich, Qld
18 July 2015, 10.30am

Angus & Robertson Victoria Point
Victoria Point Shopping Centre, Qld
25 July 2015, 10.30am

Dymocks Carindale
Carindale Shopping Centre
1 August 2015, 10.30am

#OzYAChat on Twitter
25 July 2015
7.30pm-8.30pm
I’ll be answering questions on Twitter during the next OzYAChat, which is hosted by the lovely Shaheen from Speculating on Spec Fic. To follow the conversation (and ask questions), simply search the hashtag #OzYAChat (or follow me @PaulaWeston, or @speculatef) and be online during that hour.

OzYAChat

Early reviews
Some early reviews for Burn are in:

Aussie readers: matching set of Rephaim books now available!
Shadows (Rephaim #1) has now been re-released with the international cover art concept, so Australian readers can now have a matching set. Check with your book store to see if they’ve got the new stock available, or order direct from Text Publishing (www.textpublishing.com.au). Of course, this now means the original covers are collectors’ items. (Assuming, of course, there will one day be collectors of Rephaim novels!)

Four books

And just to wrap up a HUGE month, I also received hard copies of the Turkish edition of Shadows, complete with gorgeous bookmarks, from my Turkish publisher Yabanci.🙂

Turkish copies

First look at Burn (Rephaim #4): a teaser

It’s only a month now until Burn – the fourth and final instalment in The Rephaim series – is released in Australia and New Zealand (24 June 2015 – release dates for other parts of the world are below).

Hard to believe we’ve come to the end already.

I’ve had quite a few requests for a teaser, so…here it is! (Click on link or thumbnail)

Burn_Text

Back cover blurb:

Gaby remembers everything.

For a year she believed she was a backpacker chilling out in Pandanus Beach. Working at the library. Getting over the accident that killed her twin brother.

Then Rafa came to find her and Gaby discovered her true identity as Gabe: one of the Rephaim. Over a hundred years old. Half angel, half human, all demon-smiting badass—and hopelessly attracted to the infuriating Rafa.

Now she knows who faked her memories, and how—and why it’s all hurtling towards a massive showdown between the forces of heaven and hell.

More importantly, she remembers why she’s spent the last ten years wanting to seriously hurt Rafa.

Australia/New Zealand: 24 June 2015 (Text Publishing)
United Kingdom: 5 August 2015 (Orion – Indigo Books)
US/Canada: 7 June 2016 (Tundra Books/Random House Canada)
Everywhere else (English language): check your local book stores or try Amazon (for hard copy and kindle editions) (Orion – Indigo Books)

Supanova Gold Coast 2015

I’m back from two days on the Gold Coast after participating in Supanova 2015, my first gig at a pop culture convention. And I had an absolute ball.

I saw brilliant cosplay characters, met lovely and talented actors and artists, and spent the weekend with a fantastic bunch of authors: Peter F Hamilton, Traci Harding, Kim Wilkins, Alan Baxter, Justin Woolley, Lynette Noni, and Marianne de Pierres.

I saw stormtroopers, Jack Sparrow, Ripley (complete with alien bursting out of her abdomen), Harlequin and Poison Ivy, Thor and Loki, hordes of zombies, Street Fighters, Super Mario Brothers, Kick Ass and Hit Girl…and expanded my fledgling knowledge of Anime. I watched professional wrestling and high energy, full-band lip-syncing/air guitar/drumming (Rockstar Entertainment), visited the Weta exhibit and browsed the most eclectic and fascinating collections of artwork, memorabilia and medieval warcraft. There’s so much to see and do at Supanova, it’s almost overwhelming.

But what struck me most was the atmosphere. As well as the sensation of entering a different world, there’s the unmistakable sense of fun and camaraderie. People are there to enjoy and express themselves: it’s an inclusive and eclectic tribe coming together with a shared passion for pop culture.

The Gold Coast Convention Centre buzzed for two days, inside and out. Huge congratulations to all involved for such a well-run event that remained true to its vision to be family-friendly. The crowds were thick on both days, but – from my experience at least – there were no dramas. And thank you again to Ineke for inviting me to be part of the writing contingent this year. It was a blast.

A few highlights:
As a die-hard Buffy and Angel fan, it was a treat to meet Charisma Carpenter, a dear friend of Marianne de Pierres:
IMG_1725My spot on the signing table was between the lovely Traci Harding and Peter F Hamilton. Peter is not only a legendary and much-beloved science fiction writer, he’s also one of the nicest people I’ve ever met. It was a pleasure to watch his interactions with fans, and to get the chance to chat with him for two days. (Plus, I got a book signed!)
IMG_1723Two actors who caused a fair bit of excitement (especially among teens) were Tyler Hoechlin (Teen Wolf) and Aussie actor Bob Morley (The 100). They were both pretty cool guys, so when they sat behind Marianne and I on the bus to the cocktail party, I thought I should capture the occasion. They kindly hammed it up.
IMG_1703Here’s a snapshot of my experience at Supanova Gold Coast 2015: