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  • Holly Brunnbauer

The Wrap-Up: AUGUST 2022

Updated: Jun 28, 2023

Hello, lovely!

Ever wondered what it’s like to be a writer?

Curious how others approach it?

Strap yourself in, friend. Each month, I’ll be sharing the ups & downs of fiction writing and striving toward traditional publication. I have the urge to delete that last bit, but I’m trying to get comfortable with admitting it out loud.

Scroll down for:

Want more? Slide into my DMs (winky, wink) - @hollybrunnbauer.


Delightful Mess

My first novel

A few grey hairs have popped up lately and that can only mean one thing—I'm editing. Currently in the trenches of draft 5.

There are major changes. I assure you the use of italics is warranted.

To make the story better I am cutting a point of view. Instead of a dual narrative, the story will be told from one perspective. It means a lot of rewriting and new chapters, but it has to be done. Kill your darlings as they say.

I’m also adding in an epilogue to satisfy the reader’s ‘where are they now?’ curiosity.

Editing is going slower than I’d like but I’m much happier with the story. It feels layered in a way that it didn’t before.

This manuscript has had lots of eyeballs on it (thanks, writer buddies). Hopefully, this will be the last structural edit and then I’ll focus on polishing it up for submission (gulp!).

The Sexy Bucket List

My second novel

I’m itching to bang out the first draft, but forcing myself to let the ideas simmer.

I’ve spent a considerable about of time fleshing out the protagonist.

I’ve also plotted out the story and loosely worked out the scenes. I bought a packet of palm cards, but for the life of me can’t work out how they’re supposed to help.


Professional beta readers

Earlier in the year, Beta Reader Sarah went through my draft with a fine tooth comb and provided feedback. I’m talking 17-mind-blowing-pages of notes (The Standalone Package).

Before making BIG scary changes to the next draft, I had a good old chin-wag with Sarah (aka - Brainstorming Power Hour) and felt confident to move forward.

This month, I rewrote my opening and submitted it to Sarah & Taylor for feedback (First Three Chapters Critique).

I highly recommend their services and insist you follow them on the 'gram for a daily dose of encouragement.

Professional writing support

A writer I’m following on Insta was singing the praises of Emily and Rachel and their masterclass about how to structure a scene. It was free so I thought why not?

It rocked my world.

I wish I'd known the formula they shared before I wrote my first novel. It makes a lot of sense why particular scenes work so well and why others fall flat.

The quality and helpfulness of it prompted me to purchase their Craft Complex Characters Masterclass. Only US$20 a pop—bargain!

P.S - The online training about scene structure is no longer available for free. It’s most likely accessible in their masterclass library for Tenacious Writers Society members. Worth a look.


Generally I read at a turtle-like pace. This is not a reflection of my interest in the books. It’s a direct result of having small children who seem to need me the second I sit down. However, they’ve been less needy at the moment and I’m taking full advantage of this strange phenomenon. I’ve been on a reading blitz and managed to finish two novels this month. Both by talented Australian authors.

Returning to Adelaide - Anne Freeman

A rollicking second-chance romance with heartwarming characters.

Adelaide Jones’ identity is centred around being an attentive mother and supportive wife. When her marriage implodes, she escapes to the Greek Islands. It’s the most gorgeous backdrop for new adventures, friendships and romance with someone from Adelaide’s past. Ahhh…Alec. A swoon-worthy love interest who quickly turned into my book boyfriend. Hands off, ladies. I call dibs.

The Competition - Katherine Collette

An original and witty tale filled with a quirky cast of misfits.

Frances is new to public speaking and yet she’s in the running for the SpeechMakers top prize—forty thousand dollars. And she’s desperate to win. Not for the accolades like fellow competitor and ex-mentor, Keith. Frances isn’t the least bit interested in the hoopla surrounding the competition. She’s got bigger problems and that money might just help them go away.

I tend to stick to romance novels but was happy to give this a go because I’m fond of Katherine’s contemporary Aussie voice. Lo and behold, there was a tiny romantic thread to satisfy my thirst.


See the news on Insta? We’re moving to the country (gonna eat a lot of peaches).

We moved out of our old home and into temporary accommodation (thanks, Mum). Then we bought 7 acres of land.

Bye-bye, burbs. Hello, regional Victoria.

Next year (hopefully), we will start to build our dream home and live entirely off the grid. My Pinterest boards are getting quite the workout.


Love reading, but don’t have time for a book? Grab a free 10-min read written by moi. Gimme, gimme.


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