Thursday, 4 April 2019

CWD Highlights - January to March 2019

Christian Writers Downunder is a diverse group of writers, editors, bloggers, illustrators. As a group we support each other through our facebook page and blog.

Today's blog will highlight some of the achievements of our members from January to March 2019


Raelene Purtill 

Congratulations Raelene Purtill for winning first prize in the Greenleaf Blossoms Writing Competition (first chapter of unpublished YA novel) with Thursday's Child

You can visit Raelene's page here.


Jenny Glazebrook

Jenny Glazebrook is excited to announce that Elephant Press offered her a six book deal. 

"Very excited to have signed a new publishing agreement. Elephant House Press will be publishing the 6 books in my Bateman Family Series over the next few years with the first one to be released in December this year."
Jenny's new author page is here

New Releases:

Jenny Woolsey - Amy and Phoenix 

Jenny Woolsey was thrilled to launch her latest children's book, Amy and Phoenix

Title - Amy and Phoenix
Author: Jenny Woolsey
Publication date: 2018
Publisher: Pearls of Wisdom Press
Book launch date: 23 February 2019


Eleven-year-old Amy Pringle lives on a farm. She knows all the animals by name and can talk to them like Doctor Doolittle. Amy is looking forward to her favourite ewe, Edna, giving birth. When she sees her dad with his gun, she knows something is wrong.

Amy must think of a way to save Phoenix, the three-legged lamb's life.

After her sister Hannah, posts a video of Phoenix on YouTube and it goes viral, Amy thinks all her problems are solved. Little does she know what is about to happen.

Amy and Phoenix is a heart-warming fantasy story about a caring, strong-willed and determined girl. It explores the themes of disability, advocacy, friendship, farming and agriculture, animal welfare and cyber safety.


Bio: Jenny Woolsey is a disabled author and speaker whose passion is for raising awareness and promoting acceptance of difference, diversity and disability.

David Rawlings

David Rawlings debut novel was released last month.

Title: The Baggage Handler
Publication Date: March 5 
Publisher: Thomas Nelson


When three people take the wrong suitcase from baggage claim, their lives change forever. 
A hothead businessman coming to the city for a showdown meeting to save his job.
A mother of three hoping to survive the days at her sister's house before her niece’s wedding.
And a young artist pursuing his father’s dream so he can keep his own alive.
When David, Gillian, and Michael each take the wrong suitcase from baggage claim, the airline directs them to retrieve their bags at a mysterious facility in a deserted part of the city. There they meet the enigmatic Baggage Handler, who shows them there is more in their baggage than what they have packed, and carrying it with them is slowing them down in ways they can’t imagine. And they must deal with it before they can leave.
In this modern-day parable about the burdens that weigh us down, David Rawlings issues an inspiring invitation to lighten the load.

Other highlights:

  • The Baggage Handler has also been signed in Germany and the Netherlands and those language versions will be coming out this year.
  • David has also lodged his second novel with Thomas Nelson - The Camera Never Lies. This is due in December.


Bio: David Rawlings is a based in South Australia, with a 25-year corporate writing career behind him and stories that look deeper into life in front of him. 

Jeanette O'Hagan - Shadow Crystals

Jeanette O'Hagan  has released the fourth book in the Under the Mountain series.

Title: Shadow Crystals: a novella
Publication Date: March 2019
Publisher: By the Light Books

She will do anything to save her people.
Delvina, Zadeki and the delegation lead by Danel must seek answers from the haughty Vaane, but they find the Lonely Isles in turmoil. Will Delvina find the way to open the Gate in time to prevent her people from starving? Will she be reunited with her twin, Retza. And why are the Forest Folk so secretive? As tensions increase, Delvina must discern friend from foe and defeat the shadows in her own heart.
Join Delvina and her friends on their quest to save the Glittering Realm under the mountain.

Set in the world of Nardva, Shadow Crystals is the fourth novella and penultimate novella in the Under the Mountain series.

Bio: Jeanette spun tales in the world of Nardva from the age of eight. She enjoys writing fantasy, sci-fi, poetry, and editing. Her Nardvan stories span continents, millennia and cultures. Some involve shapeshifters and magic. Others include space stations and cyborgs. She has published over forty stories and poems. Jeanette lives in Brisbane with her husband and children.

Events & Opportunities:

Omega Writers Book Fair

Last month, over 30 authors and a bunch of readers got together for the 2019 Omega Writers Book Fair.  Fiction, Non-Fiction, Children's, Young Adult, Adult, memoirs, biographies, mystery, romance, science fiction and fantasy, self-help books and picture books - it was all on display. Authors were mostly from Brisbane but also came from Toowoomba, the Gold Coast, the Sunshine Coast, northern NSW, even Victoria. Readers came from as far away as Emerald. There was certainly a buzz happening as people perused the tables. 

Over thirty people attended the two different workshops - Healing Histories by Anne Hamilton & Writing Life Stories by Ruth Bonetti.  Readings by our authors was also enjoyed in the reading lounge. 

We are looking forward to another Book Fair in March 2020.

News from Toowoomba Omega Writers Chapter

The Toowoomba Chapter of Omega Writers was thrilled to host a workshop by up-and-coming author Jessica Kate on 30 March. 

Jess has landed a multi-book deal with Thomas Nelson in the US. Her debut novel Love and Other Mistakes will be released in July 2019, with her second book A Girl’s Guide to the Outback being released in January 2020. Both are in the romantic comedy genre. 

She shared tips about breaking into the US market, making the most of conferences, writing winning book proposals and maintaining a professional mindset. The nine attendees were really appreciative of her input and effervescent enthusiasm. For more information, please check out her author site:

Rendered Realms at Supernova Gold Coast

Three CWD members, Jeanette O'Hagan, Lynne Stringer and Adele Jones will be at Supernova Gold Coast from Friday, 12-Sunday14th April.

Other News:

The 2019 CALEB awards are open. 

The 2019 CALEB Award is open for entries. There are three ways you can be involved:

  • Entry opportunities
  • Judging opportunities
  • Sponsorship opportunities
Entries are for the Unpublished & Published prizes can be made here.  Closing date is 30 April, 2019. Check eligibility and enter here.

If you would be interested in applying as a Judge for the CALEB prize apply here.

More information is available either on the Omega Writers website, Christian Writers Downunder website or Australasian Christian Writers website. 

Poetica Christi

Entries to the 2019 Poetica Christi Press Poetry Competition are now open. The theme is Love’s Footprint.

From the Poetica Christie entry form:

This topic lends itself to poems about the multi-faceted nature of love and the many ways love forms and shapes us. Love’s footprint can be found in tenderness, delight, devotion, worship, friendship, affection, attachment, courtship, partnership, marriage, regret, forgiveness, reconciliation, God’s love for us. Love can be found in families; in parenthood, childhood, allegiance, involvement, the hurt of disappointment or the practice of discipline, unconditional love and the imprint of pets.

Competition is open to poets aged 16 or over, residing in Australia.
Closing date April 30th, 2018.

For more information click here.

Stories for Life

From Stories for Life: 

For the fourth consecutive year,
Stories of Life is running a short story competition, seeking out true stories of faith and testimony. Our vision is two-fold: to equip Christians to tell their stories well and to share these stories widely.

To this end, we hold free writing workshops and publish all shortlisted entries in an anthology by Christmas. Some of these stories will also be broadcast on LifeFM in Adelaide. Throughout the year we love to celebrate the writing successes of contributors, past and present, by publishing links to their new books and articles.

We are not looking for devotionals or homilies. Rather, we want stories where something happens to someone (could be you or someone else – with their permission). Stories of faith could be so many things - happy, sad, warm, quirky, funny – the unifying theme will be a loving and faithful God at work among his people.

We hope you will consider sending in a story. The submission deadline is 31 July. We’d love to hear from you.

Toowoomba Retreat

The Toowoomba Writers Retreat is on again in from 7-9 June 2019.

The keynote speaker will be the fabulous Jo-Anne Berthelsen. She'll do two sessions relevant to fiction and non-fiction writers. There will be an Indie Publishing Panel; and lots of free time for writing, networking, brainstorming and soaking up the beautiful surrounds. So pop it in your calendars now. This is a great event, well worth attending.

Omega Writers Conference

This year the Omega Writers Conference with be from 11-13 October.

For more information read here.

Congratulations to all our members for your milestones and achievements in start of 2019


  1. Wow, what a lot of great achievements. Congratulations everyone on all those book releases, contracts, and events. Thanks too for an update on competitions Jenny :)

    1. Thanks, Nola. It's great to see so much activity. :)

  2. Congratulations to everyone! So many amazing achievements and we know how much hard work goes into them! Well done.