Our Members’ Books

Jan Mitchell retired from full-time English teaching in 1989 and retrained as a Natural Health Therapist. Since she retired to western Lake Macquarie, she has written five books. Her books can be purchased at Rathmines Post Office, Amazon other booksellers or directly.

Two in a Top Hat: A circumnavigation in Caprice
This book contains articles about seasickness, gales, learning to navigate, coping with strong currents, repairing a rigging failure at sea, friendships with others in the cruising community, the joys of tropical islands and more. They were widely read in 1978 and inspired many would-be sailors to buy a boat. Some set out to sail the world. We hope their story will inspire you too.

Crossing in Realitas
Crossings inRealitas, is a 16-year tale of family cruising. The story is, like the Mitchell’s boats, a no-nonsense and honest look at life. This book has shown how ordinary people, despite major financial and health setbacks, can enjoy the freedom of life at sea.

Hear the Ocean Sing
In Hear the Ocean Sing, the final volume of Jan Mitchell’s cruising memoirs, she takes the reader to sea with her and husband Ian. Despite experiencing a dismasting, they also wonder at the beauties of the ocean, its creatures and the pristine wildernesses they visit.

Tinker, Tailor, Soldier Sailor…: The Life of Colin Kerby, OAM
Ninety year old Colin Kerby OAM is a distinguished Australian of many talents. His most important contributions to society include the saving of nearly 500 lives from drowning and the invention and building of machines for cancer research and organ transplantation. How can one man achieve so much? Read the story of Col's life in this enjoyable, funny and fast paced biography to find out.

Food for Eyes
Food for Eyes is an important book for those dealing with degenerative eye diseases. It reveals how nutrients in commonly available foods and supplements might help save our ailing vision. The book includes a summary of the foods, supplements and exercise that we need to keep our eyes as healthy as possible.

Alison Ferguson is a retired academic, currently pursuing her long-standing fascination with writing. Her self-published books are available from online book retailers in eBook and paperback.

A Gentleman’s daughter
Harriet Blaxland was capricious and captivating. Her life in nineteenth-century Australia and India was filled with romance, riches and regret. This biography charts the course of her life and loves as she navigated her way through nineteenth-century society and across the seas.

Maiden Manoeuvres
Harriet Blaxland was capricious and captivating. Her life in nineteenth-century Australia and India was filled with romance, riches and regret. This biography charts the course of her life and loves as she navigated her way through nineteenth-century society and across the seas.

Dearest Daughter
Dearest Daughter is the second of three in The Sisters' Saga, which tells of Henrietta and her sisters and the compromises they must make to reconcile love's delusions with the demands of reality.

Widow’s Wake
Widow's Wake is the last of three in The Sisters' Saga, which tells of three sisters and the compromises they must make to reconcile love's delusions with the demands of reality.

Wayne Russell is a writer, with a side hustle as a Postal Manager. He writes because he enjoys plucking stories from the spinning vortex that is his imagination. Watch out when he retires and has a no-holds-barred chance of putting them all down on paper. If paper still exists then.

The Butterfly Quest
A princess finds herself all alone. Her parents missing, and now relatives she hardly knows have come to help her rule, but does something more sinister lie behind it all? Can Jazmyn trust the butterfly that calls to her in the garden? Will she survive the dangers of The Butterfly Quest, save the kingdom and just maybe save her family? The adventure begins.

The Ember Island: Butterfly Quest 2
Having saved both her Father and the Kingdom, Jazmyn sets out now to find her Mother. Across the sea lies The Ember Island, a place that everything is drawing her toward. With her faith in herself and the aid of an unlikely companion, she faces Pirates and wild seas before ending up on a seemingly deserted island. Her journey takes her through ancient ruins, battles deadly creatures and all the while heeding The Butterfly's warning. Together she and others on the island must join up to fight an old enemy and protect the innocence that lies at the heart of the island.

The Underocean: Butterfly Quest 3
Beneath the ruins of an ancient castle, lies The Door. A door that has remained locked for hundreds of years. What lies beyond none know, but now Jazmyn has the key. Found on the Ember Island and she believes it holds a secret that could ensure the survival of her kingdom. Adventure, magic and fantastic creatures await Jazmyn and her family but The Butterfly has plans for them all.

Tony Lang also writes under his pen name, Lachlan Ness. Tony Lang is a Presbyterian minister who writes humorous stories about his times in locum positions in NSW and Scotland. He also writes poetry and books for children. His books are available on his site.

The Channel Bank and Other Verse
The poems in The Channel Bank and other verses, reflect the author's love of family and of the natural world, and his take on the quirky twist on life. The poetry is written in the classic style of easy to read, genuine verse and metre that is not easy to find among modern poets

What the Bible Really Says About Women
What the Bible Really Says About Women challenges and disproves the widely held belief by various denominations and individuals that women were made by God to be subordinate to men, and are thus denied leadership roles within the church and elsewhere.

A Kangaroo Loose in Scotland
Lachlan and Janet travel from Australia to live in a small village in beautiful Caithness, mainland Scotlands most northerly country. Lachlan has accepted a post as locum minister, unaware of the many adventures that await him and Janet. A parade of colorful characters crosses their path through the pages of the book. Lachlan describes his journeys from mainland Scotlands most northerly point to its most westerly town, down the Western Highlands, Inverness, Culloden, Ullapool, to the Summer Isles and Orkney. If you love all things Scottish, you'll love this book.

A Kangaroo Loose in Shetland
A heart-warming story, full of humour and occasional pathos (for after all, it’s all about life), is a “must read” for those who may want to visit the North Isles and discover for themselves the remarkable beauty that abounds in the ancient islands of Shetland. The Church of Scotland parish of the North Isles of Shetland has been without a full-time minister for over four years; a fact that comes to the attention down in Australia of the Rev Lachlan Ness. He and his wife Janet travel to Aberdeen, Scotland, from where they cross hundreds of kilometres of wild North Sea and arrive in Shetland in a snow storm in the early spring of 2008, unaware of the many adventures that await them among the warm-hearted folk of the North Isles, Britain’s remotest islands.

A kangaroo loose in the top paddock
When Lachlan and his new young wife Janet arrived to take up residence in Deerwood they soon realised that life would be anything but dull. Not long after arriving they were joined by Lassie the kleptomaniac collie and coal-black Samantha, the world's cleverest, most determined cat. Then there was Sam Hodgson, the town crook who sold baby emus around town as turkey chicks, Ella "Opal Eye" Hobbs who liked to direct the traffic during a funeral, Emmy the emu who terrorised Lachlan, the indomitable Father Fahey, elderly parish priest, wrongfully arrested for bag-snatching and many more. Join Lachlan and Janet in Deerwood. Chances are you won't be able to put this book down without a warm glow.

The Ness Fireside Book of God Ghosts Ghouls and Other True Stories
This book contains a series of chapters covering not only my own experiences of the supernatural but also the stories of many people who have suddenly and unexpectedly found themselves confronted with something beyond their life experience. Only the stories I believe to be true are included here, and most are told by people I know. As an indication, here are some of the chapter titles that may awaken your curiosity: Ghosts; Hauntings; Premonitions; Unexplainable, Inexplicable; The Matter of Evil; Aliens, or What?; Some Animal Stories; The Life Beyond This Life; and many others.

The Magic Mist
The Magic Mist is a fantasy, in the form of a lovely, 90-line poem. A young boy goes for a quiet walk on a path in the Australian bush (or forest). A mysterious mist descends and as the boy walks into it, assuming that it is an ordinary mist, he suddenly discovers that a magical new world of Australian bush animals is revealed.
The full-page illustrations by Helen Marshall, are breathtakingly beautiful in their rich colours. There is a colouring-in page which includes words in the story that young readers may not know. They are encouraged to find out their meanings.
The proof-reader commented: "I didn't want it to end!" That may well be the reaction of most who read this lovely story.

An Australian Bush Fantasy
A two-part allegory, An Australian Bush Fantasy uses expertly crafted rhyme and meter to describe a magical world filled with talking animals. While delightfully playful, the poem nevertheless contains a deeper current—one that is filled with a poignant spiritual message that appeals to the natural world and humankind's need to respect it.

“Spaceships” is a story told as a poem about a friendly little alien, who comes to earth in a spaceship, where he meets a young earth person and offers the trip of a lifetime – a ride on his stellar sledge, to a space café and some delicious space treats. If you were offered a trip like that, would you go? Read what this young person does!

Sandra Joy is a motivational writer with a strong personality. Having overcome addictions and other traumas, she believes our experiences help others. After losing all her writings in four unique circumstances, she is now determined to share her stories. Current projects include children’s stories, a memoir and a young adult novel. She has self-published, been published in 2 anthologies, and co-edited an anthology. Determined to live like an author, Sandra is studying English and Writing at UON, and Editing and Publishing through Curtin University. She is one of the convenors on this year’s ASCMC, and has volunteered for this year’s NWF.

Salvation Through the Gift of Help
This book shows how helping other people God's way not only saves them from their current predicament, but leads to their eternal salvation. God chooses to work through those of us here on the ground level. We are the tools in his toolkit when he answers a call for help.

Memory in Lockdown
This anthology brings together twenty-two pieces of creative nonfiction - memoir, family history, personal essay, travel narrative - by Newcastle and Hunter writers, produced during COVID-19.

LIFE: a variant of adventure
Life does not always go to plan. It is not always easy or fun. It's just a process we go through - until we die. But it doesn't have to be morbid or funny. What we experience in our life makes us who we are - the strong, resilient, powerful people who have earned the ability to have empathy to help others. These stories will make you laugh and cry ... that's just life: a variant of adventure.

Happy Helper books
Children love to help. The Happy Helper series explores the way children help their family and friends by using what they have: hands, heart, eyes, mouth, ears, brain and feet. Each book follows the reader celebrating a special event in a different setting, and contains an educational concept such as opposites, size and numbers.

Linda Visman is a retired teacher who always wanted to write, but didn’t manage to start until her mid-fifties. Since then, she has written poetry, short stories, articles, and two novels. Both novels are set in fictional towns of the Illawarra Coast, the area where Linda grew up in the 1950s and 60s.

Thursday’s Child
Fourteen-year-old Tori lives with her parents, sister and four younger brothers in an old shack in the Australian bush. In 1961, there are very few opportunities for girls, but Tori’s ability and ambition, though isolating her from her classmates, create a desire for a better life than her angry, hard-drinking Irish father can provide.

Ben’s Challenge
Ben’s father was killed by a hit-and-run driver at Easter and, six months later, nobody seems to care who killed him. With no leads to go on, even the police have stopped their investigations. But Ben knows something is going on, and he is determined to get to the bottom of it.

Irina Frolova is a Russian-Australian writer who lives with her three children and two fur babies on the Awabakal land in NSW. She has a degree in philology from Moscow City Pedagogical University and is currently studying psychology at Deakin University. Her poetry has appeared in Not Very Quiet, Australian Poetry Collaboration, Baby Teeth Journal, Rochford Street Review, The Blue Nib, The Australian Multilingual Writing Project, and Live Encounters, as well as various anthologies. Irina’s writing speaks to the experience of immigration and a search for belonging. Her first collection of poetry Far and Wild was released by Flying Island Books in January 2021. You can find Irina on Facebook @irinafrolovapoet.

Far and Wild
Far and Wild is Irina Frolova's first collection of poetry. It speaks to the experience of immigration and a search for belonging. It draws on fairy-tales and explores archetypes through cultural and feminist lenses. The books can be purchased directly from the author through her page in Facebook.

Pam Garfoot writes popular books about history in partnership with her sister, Elizabeth Conway. Making them Real- finding a Queensland past won them the Queensland Family History Society History Book of 2014.

Making Them Real
This book tells the stories of several families of Queensland pioneers as discovered by two of their descendants. The result is a hybrid of family history, military history and memoir.

Suellen Holland wrote her memoir of growing up in Rabaul, PNG and published it in 2017. Black Sand and Betel Nut is available from Amazon, Booktopia, Dymocks and other booksellers.

Black Sand and Betel Nut: Childhood Memories of Papua New Guinea
In 1956 Suellen and her parents left India to start a new life in Australia and 1960 they packed up again and went to live to Papua New Guinea. Black Sand and Betel Nut is a frank and moving account of Suellens extraordinary childhood. Her collection of stories recall the halcyon days of her childhood and pays tribute to a place she will always call home.

Olga Korlevic is a Russian immigrant living in the Newcastle area since 2016. Teacher by trade, she has enjoyed writing since her teenage years. In 2022, she became a finalist in Newcastle Herald Short Story Competition. Find more information about Olga on her site.

Little Lorie Had a Farm
Little Lorie Had a Farm is a book about an Australian girl who meets different animals around her family's farmhouse. Written for children aged 5-8, it contains ten stories full of imagination, excitement and well-presented educational information about the most popular Australian animals

Bronwyn MacRitchie is a retired music teacher and although interested in writing during her school years, didn’t begin to write seriously until retirement.

Pixie Dust
Bonnie is a child raised in a small town in New South Wales in the fifties with her five siblings. Their adventures unfold around simpler times where the freedom of the bush and a bleak emotional upbringing join to create a bond between brother and sister that will take you on a comical and heart wrenching journey.