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Bowra Regional Writers Expo - Books and Bowraville

Today I met up with a bunch of writers and readers at the little town of Bowraville, population 2500, just half an hour up the road from me.

Bowraville is actually the delightful ‘wild west’ town where I passed my driver’s licence on my 17th birthday many adventurous years ago. I remember the policeman saying, ‘Imagine there’s a parked car there and a parked car there (in the main street). I want you to reverse park in between them.’ Needless to say, I didn’t hit any cars.

Me (on the left) at not quite 17 with my bestie, Lou.

Pic here of me (on the left) at almost 17, and my bestie, Lou.

Today there were a lot of cars in the main street and most of them belonged to readers or writers, while the old Pioneer Community Hall was spruced up with tables and tablecloths, and so many books it made my heart swell.

The valley is beautiful and obviously calls to the creative because the amount of local and regional writers was astounding – and such fun – across all genres.

And some fab volunteers making it all happen.

Annie Seaton I and had fun sharing table space.

A row or authors and creative works. Waving to Tamara.

The Nambucca Mayor, Rhonda Hoban, and Deputy Mayor, Uncle Martin Ballangarry OAM both spoke from the heart.

The gorgeous Tamara McWilliam is a shining light and writes gritty contemporary romance as well as being the best workshop presenter.

The free workshops were excellent and well attended, the books were sold and stories told, the hubbub of conversation as non-stop as the way coffee and gorgeous homemade cakes sailed out of the kitchen.

Above - Tamara's workshop - see me at the back there taking it all in.

And Greg's workshop, always fab and inspiring me to do do that extra work.

The publishing panel I found fascinating between e-publishing and traditional publishing journeys for the authors. The panel was led by Greg, with some insightful questions the audience and panelists appreciated.

Left to right, Ralph Allan, author of the Money Club, me with The Baby Doctor, Annie Seaton and her Porter Sister Series, Tamara McWilliam and The Willow Tree Series and Greg with his latest release Whistler's Bones.

These two handsome gents are the Barrons, Bob and Greg. Bob and his wife hosted my first ever book launch for my first book published in 2001 in their Newsagency at West Kempsey, and kept all my books to sell when other stores sent them back. Thank you! And Greg is a friend, and fellow writer.

A champion gentleman who gives great workshops as well as writes amazing crime novels. Greg launched Heart Of THE SKY for me at South West Rocks.

What more could you ask for?

Well an absolutely incredible second-hand book store – seriously, writers have the best books on their shelves - and the generosity of donations shows a sincere attempt at uncluttering. Unfortunately, most of the uncluttering ended in the back of my car and I have a whole new box of books to read – I can’t resist a bargain.

The upside, many readers and writers have taken one of my latest Penguin release, THE BABY DOCTOR, my book baby, home to read. An awesome day. Thank you to the organisers – I’ll be back next year

Warmest regards to all

xxFi McArthur

PS Nearly all of these pics were taken by the incredible Sienna, Tamara's daughter, fab photographer and all round amazing young woman. Thank you Sienna. xx

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