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  • Holly Brunnbauer

The Wrap-Up: MARCH 2023

Updated: Jun 28, 2023

Hello, lovely!

It's been a HUGE month and I can't wait to share the ins and outs of being a stay-at-home writer.

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A neat & tidy desk with a laptop and plants that must be fake because they look quite healthy.


The Sexy Bucket List

My second novel

This month, I locked myself in the writing cave and wrote 16 chapters (approx. 49,000 words).

I finished the first draft and celebrated with carrot cake. Yummo!

It took 3 months to get to THE END and it's wonderful to finally get this story out of my head and onto the page. With the school holidays coming up, I put my foot down to race to the finish line.

Want to know how I did it? Read my latest blog post - Writing a first draft - Lessons & Tips.

Keen to know what THE SEXY BUCKET LIST is about? Here's a sneak peek.


July 2023

This year, I've made a commitment to ongoing learning and have allocated myself a teeny tiny budget to honour that.

The CYA Conference is for writers and illustrators of children's, young adult and adult stories.

One of the best things about it is that it's a hybrid event offering in-person and online classes across three weekends in July.

While I'd love to attend in Brissy, it's not feasible or doable at the moment. Bummer. That's okay; I've booked myself a ticket for Writing for Adults (Online) and look forward to learning from the comfort of my own home wearing my finest fuzzy slippers.

As an attendee, I've also signed up for a couple of Agent and Editor Assessments where they pre-read a snippet of your manuscript, synopsis and bio and then provide feedback during a 15-minute 1-on-1 session. I will be submitting THE SEXY BUCKET LIST with the intention to find out if it's got a commercial hook (and if it's good enough) for traditional publication.


While The Baby Sleeps - Stephanie Hazeltine


I have a soft spot for sweet romance stories, especially, when they're set in Australia. It's a good thing Saman Shad's debut novel, THE MATCHMAKER, delivers both.

THE MATCHMAKER explores themes of identity and culture and is a breath of fresh air in the rom-com space.


Saima is a great matchmaker and has many weddings to prove it. Despite her success rate, there are grumbles within the desi community in Sydney. Parents aren't happy about her modern views, methods and matches. When gossip ramps up, Saima's business slows down. If things don't change soon, she'll have to get a boring office job and move back in with her Ammy.

Things are looking up when the wealthy parents of a charming bachelor show up at her office. They want Saima to convince their son to accept her services without him knowing about their involvement, and if she does, she'll be generously rewarded.

The problem is, Saima finds the perfect match for Kal, only it's not someone on her books and isn't the type of woman his parents will approve of.

Will Saima risk her business and reputation for love?


While it's been a big writing month, I've stayed true to my promise to take weekends off to enjoy family time, reading and rest.

One weekend, we visited the small town of Trentham to chase waterfalls, visit an old railway station and sample local cuisine. Don't be fooled into thinking it was a magical day we'll cherish forever. One kid was car sick on the way and another had a full-blown tantrum in a cafe. Oh, the memories.

All was forgotten the following weekend at our town's Autumn Festival. Yes, they celebrate the change of seasons here and I for one am delighted by this. There was a parade, vintage cars, petting zoo, and overpriced hot dogs. What more can a gal ask for?

The school holidays are next month, and yes I love my kids yadda-yadda-yadda, but for some reason, this break will be three weeks long instead of the usual two. If anyone needs me, I'll be under my dining table in the foetal position. Wish me luck.


I wrote a novel in 3 months. Wanna know how? Read Writing a first draft - Lessons & Tips.


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