my first ever selfie….

I have sent off the manuscript of my so-far-unpublished novel to my London publisher. It will be some time before I have an answer, and as I have no current contract with them for a new work, I may eventually have to offer it elsewhere. But it feels great to have written 150,000 word novel at my age, and be reasonably happy with it.

Titled at the moment (and these things frequently change)

 “The Fugitive Queen”


Yes, I am attending the World Science Fiction Convention which was to be in Wellington New Zealand, but which has gone online for obvious reasons.

I have 3 items on the programme: 
a Reading, a Panel and a Kaffeklatch.
If you are also attending, 
you will find me at these times for the above events:

Event description:  
   I shall be reading the first chapter of my new (as yet unpublished) book, 
Date: Wednesday, 29 July
Time: 16:30-16:55, Please remember this is the time in NZ.
Place: Reading Room 2 (Programming)



Event description: 
Nevertheless, She Persisted: 
    The Explosion of the Heroine in the past 50 Years 
    Protaganists in SF and fantasy used to be primary male. Heinlein’s
juveniles, for example, although featuring a strong female secondary
character, had male leads. This began to change in the late
1960s, with books like Rite of Passage, and now non-male protagonists
are common. 

    The panel looks at the trend, discusses its implications,
and talks about some of their favorites. 

    Catherine Lundoff  (Moderator), Maiya Ibrahim, Lee Murray , Glenda Larke
Date: Thursday, 30 July

Time: 15:00 – 15:50,  Please remember this is the time in NZ.
Place: Programme Room 3 (Webinar)


Event description:
  A video chat with other fans and me (maximum 9 pax — could be just you if no one else turns up!) Ask me anything you like.
Date: Friday, 31st July

Time: 13:00 – 13:50,  Please remember this is the time in NZ.

Place:  Kaffeklatch and Literary Beer Room (Programming)


Walking Away the Writing / Isolation Blues…

We here in Western Australia have avoided the worst of Covid-19 thanks to sensible scientific-based decisions of our politicians and public servants. We spent 3 months isolating ourselves. Once restrictions on local travel were eased, we headed north to Kalbarri, where a morning walk of 7 kms yielded up these photos of the Indian Ocean’s most easterly shores along our rugged coast.

And now I shall grapple some more with the final chapters of 
“THE FUGITIVE QUEEN”*, which I am now re-writing, 
as I have never been happy with the conclusion.

As the waves broke, the spray shot up into the air like fountain spray. 
 There’s nothing like the ocean to put bring perspective or 
— in spite of the thundering surf — 
to bring calm…

*Provisional title


(title may change!)

The initial draft of this novel has been finished at slightly under 150,000 words, so not quite as long as the Stormlord or Forsaken Lands trilogies, but longer than The Isles of Glory books…

I am now waiting to hear back from my numerous wonderful beta readers with their invaluable comments and criticisms, of which there will doubtless be many.

Watch this space for updates….


THE FUGITIVE QUEEN has not yet been completed, but it will be done by Christmas, all being well. The first 100,000 words have been reworked a number of times, and I am reasonably happy with them, but the next 20 thousand still need a bit of work. The final 10 thousand is underway. And yes, I will soon be on the hunt for beta readers.

The only person to have read any of it so far, an editor friend with a critical eye, seems to be enjoying it, so that’s good news. (And no, it doesn’t matter how many books you have published, you still think the latest is terrible. Consequently, you soak up any praise as if it was rain in a drought.)

And here’s a photo I took recently of the caterpillar of a case moth, scurrying along across a path. It has clothed itself in a camouflage gown of straws. That sort of furry stuff at the top is its head poking out. 



Australia is home to dancing spiders, minute little creatures, surely adorable even to arachnophobes. They are called Peacock Spiders because of their bright, vibrant colours. They are also rarely seen, because they are so tiny… about the size of half your smallest fingernail.
Today I was lucky enough to come across one in my garden. 
 Not sure what particular species it is, but probably — seeing as it was in my garden! — the Common Peacock Spider. The male actually does an intricate charming dance performance to impress the female (and maybe to persuade her not to regard him as prey). Unfortunately, I didn’t catch such a dance on the video…

And in other news, THE FUGITIVE QUEEN is within 5,000 words of completion.