Caleb, my world famous rockstar. The lead guitarist in a band he founded in high school. Responsible for many a left handed, messy, chicken scrawl autograph.

His outfit of choice? Faded denim jeans and a black tee, paired with scruffy black boots that should have been replaced years ago!

Quiet, with a smile that reveals dimples, Caleb is a man of his word. He keeps secrets confided to him, without question. His eyes are the colour of warm caramel, and when he looks at you, it is like he is really seeing you, the real you.

He is an active listener, when you speak to him, his attention is focused solely on you. In that moment, he makes you feel like the most important person in the world. …

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In Caleb’s Song, book one in my Rockstar Redemption series, my main character, Gabriella, is Italian.

What does it mean to Gabriella, to be Italian?

More than olives and pasta dishes, it means appreciating the little things, the colour of the sky, the curve of the mountain, the smell of the orange blossoms. It is experiencing the innocence of a child, and the loyalty of a dog. It is taking care of your family first, no matter what.

It is making things by hand, for Gabriella, this means baking. It is being generous, stubborn, and proud of your heritage.

Above all else, people stick to their word. La parole é sagra (the word is blood). no matter what.

For Gabriella, it is sacrifice, without complaint, no matter what it might end up costing her.

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We all have something that we are running from, be it something as simple as a bad breakup, or something more sinister like a crime.

For my main character Gabby, she is running from dreams left unfulfilled, and family responsibilities she never wanted.

What is it that you are running from?

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Creativity takes courage, this is true of all forms of creativity.

Regardless of if it is a painting, a novel, a song, or a new clothing range, it all takes courage and a firm belief in your own abilities.

You need to have a thick skin if you plan to be creative, you can’t let anything anyone says get you down.

It is not easy to be creative, to put your art and ideas out there, but it is very easy for them to be torn down.

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We all have something painful in our past, something that we hide from the outside world, something we squash deep down inside. For my main character, Caleb, it is the very sudden and unexpected loss of his brother, his best friend.

It is a pain that renders him incapable of living. Cutting off all contact with those that care about him, ceasing work, he has become a shadow of himself, merely sleepwalking through the day. …

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Apart from a select few, most of my novels are set in Australia’s harsh outback, a vibrant swirl of colours and cultures, or in Australia’s small country towns, a tightknit backdrop woven with secrets and complexities.

What makes these locations special? Why do I keep coming back to them time and time again?

I spent my childhood in a small country town, population 1,428. You can imagine my shock then, when at 13 we moved to one of Australia’s busiest cities, population 2.28 million. …


Kathleen Ryder

Proud Mum + Foster Mum | Published Author of Women’s Fiction + Romance | |

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