Blog 2016-10-25T09:43:53+11:00

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Ellie’s blog

something real and something true

May 20th, 2019|4 Comments

I’m writing this while sitting propped on pillows on my bed, while in the next room, my partner helps our youngest son with his Year 5 Ancient Egypt project. I did my bit on the project already, having been integral to the model-making process yesterday.

I was out in the garden earlier (it’s Sunday) considering where I’m at with my writing life. I’ve currently got a book on submission to the US – it’s a really good book, in my opinion, but being on submission is always terrifying because you just don’t know if anyone else will like your book enough to […]

Circus Hearts 3: All Aces is ready to rock!

November 3rd, 2018|0 Comments

The last book of the Circus Hearts series is finally here! You can find Ren and Zep’s story at any of these platforms:

Amazon US

Amazon AU

B&N Nook



A teenage contortionist and a young cardsharp risk danger to right a family legacy of injustice.…

Nineteen-year-old contortionist Ren Putri is committed to circus, study and self-discipline  – in that order. But after being rescued from a carnival fire by cardsharp Zep Deal, she’s overwhelmed by some highly disorderly thoughts. Zep has a long history of trouble, and now he’s been suspected of sabotaging the circus that’s become his whole life. Ren […]

Circus Hearts: All Aces – cover + blurb reveal

October 16th, 2018|1 Comment

Today’s the day! I finally get to show off the final cover of the final book in the Circus Hearts series – Circus Hearts: All Aces. And take a look at this gorgeousness!

For those of you intrigued by Zep Deal, the mysterious suspected saboteur in Circus Hearts 2, and Ren Putri, the carnival’s resident contortionist, you’re going to *love* this one 🙂

Circus Hearts 3: All Aces

A teenage contortionist and a young cardsharp risk danger to right a family legacy of injustice.…

Nineteen-year-old contortionist Ren Putri is committed to circus, study and self-discipline  – in that […]

Circus Hearts: All Fall Down is liiiive

October 1st, 2018|0 Comments

I’ve always been kind of fascinated by bitchy characters – I know, it’s a personality flaw – but really I just want to know what makes them the way they are and how that strategy is working out for them. I also like seeing bitchy characters have their world re-arranged, and the tumult that ensues…and hence my desire to write Fleur Klatsch’s story.

Fleur is a spoiled princess, and she was kind of the villain in All The Little Bones – and for all her flaws, she certainly chewed the scenery whenever she popped up. I was only halfway through writing that […]

Circus Hearts 2: All Fall Down cover reveal and preorder!

September 18th, 2018|0 Comments

Thar she blows! Here’s the gorgeous cover!

And you can now preorder Circus Hearts 2 on all platforms, so go wild with this link:

Circus Hearts 2 Universal Book Link

Carnival glamour and swoon-worthy romance in Book 2 of the latest dark YA contemp series by the author of Every Breath.

A ringmaster’s daughter and a bearded lady’s son join forces to stop a saboteur…

Nineteen-year-old Fleur Klatsch is loyal to her trapeze team and her ringmaster father, dedicated to the circus, and tough on everyone around her. After a series of accidents at Klatsch’s Karnival, Fleur is left holding the ball: she’s running the […]

Circus Hearts: All The Little Bones is out in the world!

September 2nd, 2018|0 Comments

Ahhh, it’s finally release day! I’ve got to say, I’m not a patient person – and waiting to share this book has felt like a special kind of torture! I’m really proud of the Circus Hearts series, and I’m so glad that now people are able to read the first book. It feels great to get the ball rolling!

If you’d like to buy the ebook, you can find it here at these links:

Amazon US

Amazon AU

Kobo, iBooks, Nook

And if you’d like a copy of the paperback, don’t worry! The paperbacks are coming all at once on 1 December.

But […]

CIRCUS HEARTS 1: All The Little Bones is on pre-order!

August 25th, 2018|0 Comments

I need to announce that the pre-order of Circus Hearts 1: All The Little Bones is live! Yes, folks, you can now pre-order the ebook. Go forth and do that right here (but keep a pic of your receipts!):

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Amazon AU


B&N Nook



Pre-ordering means that the first Circus Hearts ebook will drop right into your device as soon as the clock ticks over to 1 September. I’m extremely excited (and also a bit terrified) about the Circus Hearts release, and I’m nervous and thrilled that you’ll all get to read it soon. For those of you […]

CIRCUS HEARTS 1: All The Little Bones – cover and blurb reveal

July 24th, 2018|0 Comments

Friends! The day has finally arrived when I get to share this cover with the larger world, and I’m so stoked, and also very relieved, mainly because keeping it sekret has been hurting my brain.

So here it is!

A teenage trapeze artist and an apprentice strongman on the run from a terrible crime…

New dark YA romance, with a criminal twist, from the author of Every Breath and White Night.

Seventeen-year-old Sorsha Neary’s life is changed in one night when she defends herself behind the vans of her family circus troupe. Now Sorsha and apprentice strongman Colm Mackay are travelling south, to evade the […]

The Story of Circus Hearts

July 10th, 2018|0 Comments

In 2015 (I think), I wrote a story called Dexter and Sinister – about a young trapeze artist whose circus family covers up a crime she committed – and I submitted it to the Sisters in Crime Scarlet Stiletto Awards. The story was unsuccessful, and that’s how it goes with competitions, sometimes it’s luck of the draw. But Dexter and Sinister planted a seed in my brain: after writing three books in which a girl (and her eccentric partner) investigates crime, what would it be like to write a book about a girl who was a criminal perpetrator?

This is […]

What Have You Come Here To Say? – writing towards vulnerability

June 25th, 2018|0 Comments

I’m writing this because I’m about to take a deep dive into personal feelings in order to work on a new YA contemp project I’m pitching to a traditional publisher. I have a rough plotline and some strong characters, and the story is somehow demanding to be written, which is great, that’s kind of what you always want to happen. I’ve written the story non-sequentially up to this point, and I need to start filling in the gaps between sections and I’ve got lots of good ideas, so yay.

But (and you knew the but was coming somewhere, didn’t you) I’m […]

#SelfPubIsHere – a hybrid perspective

May 25th, 2018|6 Comments

Okay, so I sat down and wrote a thing – a whole thing! – about self-publishing and lit festivals, and made cogent arguments for indie inclusion, and created incisive sentences about self-publishing’s relative legitimacy, and…

And you know what I realised? It doesn’t matter.

If you don’t think self-publishing is a valid thing, if you consider $700millionUSD in book sales in 2017 alone to be just a blip on the radar…then I can’t help you. I really can’t. I mean, I think it’s time we started talking about self-publishing without wincing, because that sort of behaviour just makes us look immature. […]

Hello, and White Night Launches, and All The Things

February 2nd, 2018|0 Comments

Hello again 🙂 Thanks for your good wishes over the summer hols, and I hope you had a lovely break. Our annual family camping trip was excellent as always, and while we were away, I think I may have discovered a cure for that endlessly-annoying blight on writers’ lives, lower back pain (ugh, it’s right up there in the List of Most Aggravating Things about Being A Writer, along with carpal tunnel syndrome and Writers Arse). The cure I found is kayaking – which I did every day I was camping, and seemed to help a lot – so I’ve been […]

Seasonal Nice Stuff 2017

December 23rd, 2017|0 Comments

Happy holidays!

If you’re anything like me, you’re caught in the mad scramble of seasonal preparations. But I wanted to take a moment to reflect on Nice Stuff.

Personal Nice Stuff in 2017:

*I self-published a book – No Limits is out in the world, hooray!! (and it’s on sale right now on all ebook platforms, if you’re interested) This has also led me to a community of fantastic, supportive self-publishing women (you know who you are – you’re all incredible, but especially you, Alison Croggon)

*the Reading Matters conference was fantastic and amazing, as always

*I continue to get so […]

WHITE NIGHT cover reveal and god bless cover designers

November 2nd, 2017|0 Comments

Here it is!

I’ve been waiting since July to show you the incredible cover for my new book, WHITE NIGHT, and I’m sooo relieved to finally be able to share (I was just about ready to blow a gasket, holding this news in), so I do hope you like it!



Is it not BEEEWWDDIFULLL? Oh my gosh, it’s gorgeous, and I want to publicly thank Debra Billson, the incredibly talented cover designer from Allen & Unwin for gifting me with this thing of such beauty!

WHITE NIGHT comes out in March 2018, and I’ll be sharing the back cover copy with you very soon.

If you’d like to get up-to-the-minute news about […]

October 2017 Newsletter Giveaway

October 28th, 2017|0 Comments

This month I’m giving away a bunch of stuff to new and current subscribers to my newsletter. See the pretty pic? Check it:

New subscribers get:

-a two-chap excerpt of NO LIMITS on arrival (through BookFunnel on all e-platforms)

-a chance to win a 3-book prize pack: a copy of EVERY BREATH, BEGIN END BEGIN and NO LIMITS, all personalised and signed.

-first newsletter has a sneak peek of my WIP, CIRCUS HEARTS

Current subscribers are already in the running to win a NO LIMITS prize pack: personalised, signed copy of the book, plus a poster and a set of postcards.

All giveaways are open for […]

Dealing with your Edit Letter

October 23rd, 2017|0 Comments

I haven’t written for the blog in a while, because I haven’t really found a topic that interested me enough to drag me away from my WIP. But I recently read an article by designer Mike Monteiro called How To Read A Client E-mail, which was full of wisdom about how to deal sensibly and sensitively with client feedback and requests. While I was reading, I thought, ‘This would be equally applicable to edit letters’. There are a number of parallels between dealing with a design client and dealing with your editor. I also hear from many writers that […]

NO LIMITS Launch Party, and a huge thank yous

August 24th, 2017|0 Comments

Heya! *waves* I’m laid up in bed with a hideous cold right now (stay back – you don’t want to get these germs, trust me), but I’m dropping by real quick to give an excited cheer for NO LIMITS, which was released into the wild by me and Sarah and Alex, the gals from The YA Room, at Dymocks CBD Melbourne on August 18. There was a stack of book copies, amazing cupcakes (iced in cover colours!), some lovely reviews of the book, a Q&A, me signing stuff and a helluva lot of people. Here’s a few pics to give you some idea of general shenanigans:

Sharing No Limits

August 12th, 2017|0 Comments

Hello again!

I can hardly believe it, but NO LIMITS is about to go live.

I originally wrote this book because – no matter what people told me – I simply could not stop obsessing over Harris’s story. I had already sunk so deep into his head, and into the desperate situation that he and Amie found themselves in, that there was no turning back. I also couldn’t stop thinking about the issues around ice use in local country towns (towns just like my own), and how it was affecting the teenagers in those towns – even though I was warned that a book about teens and drug crime would likely […]

NO LIMITS: Self-Publishing

July 25th, 2017|0 Comments

Okay, last time I posted about process stuff I went into the backstory of the process of writing NO LIMITS and talked a lot of wank about how I was channelling the characters during the writing of the book, which is true, but no less wanky for being true. Today I thought we’d dip into something a bit less ephemeral and mysterious and talk about self-publishing, specifically why I decided to self-publish this book and some of my thoughts on the matter. Because I know there will be people who’ll ask me about it – the why of it – and I figure I may as well get it […]

NO LIMITS – Book Launch and further insanity

July 18th, 2017|0 Comments


Yes, there will be a book launch for NO LIMITS. Yes, it will be crazy. Yes, it is on Friday August 18 at 6pm for a 6.30pm start, hosted by the awesome gals from The YA Room, and graciously venued by Dymocks CBD, Collins St, Melbourne. All gratis, and all welcome!

Sign on for: Food, drink, cake (which also counts as food), and many books. Me signing stuff. Daggy music, which cannot be blamed on the lovely staff of Dymocks. Short yet embarrassing speeches. Kids running around. Balloons (maybe? if you want to bring them, knock yourself out). Silly hats (as per balloons). Flannie shirts. Free booze. Heartfelt tears. […]

Cover reveal: NO LIMITS

July 3rd, 2017|0 Comments

Yes! At last! The cover for my new book, NO LIMITS, has been released onto an innocent and unsuspecting public, and my evil plan for world domination is complete!! BWAHAHAHAHA!!!

Okay, in all seriousness, I’m hideously excited for you to see it, and I really hope you like it.

Scroll down now, if you’re one of those dreadful impatient people. Otherwise, for those of you who are good with delayed gratification, read the Back Cover Blurb first:

New Australian YA romantic crime from the author of the award-winning Every series…

Boozer, brawler, ladies’ man – nineteen-year-old Harris Derwent is not a good guy.

His one attempt to play the hero – helping out his […]

Process – NO LIMITS

May 18th, 2017|2 Comments

I was inspired by Nicola Rendell for this post. Her blog post about the process letter she writes after each book felt really true. It’s a way to debrief, after the book is released and away, and you’re still coping with that weird Times New Roman-shaped hole in your heart that’s left when a book you wrote finally goes out to readers.

Although, this letter is a bit different – my book NO LIMITS isn’t yet out. But it soon will be: I’ve set the release date for August, and I intend to keep to that. The book is written, edited and ready to fly. So the tough part […]

Finally, some good news – April 2017

April 21st, 2017|0 Comments


Hey folks, nice to be chatting to you again. This year has been really hectic, so this is actually my first real post of the year. Luckily, it’s a ‘good news’ edition – and there’s a fair bit of good news, so bear with me.

First, I’d like to thank my mate, Andy, for helping me to spiffy up my website – the new #LoveOzYAbookclub page that you can click on now is all Andy’s fine work. For bonus points, he’s been teaching me How to Not Be A WordPress Klutz, so things should get more streamlined around the site soon. From now on, my blog posts and my […]


February 6th, 2017|0 Comments

Hi, all you lovelies.

I am taking a significant break from social media, so I just wanted to let you know here. If you need me, you can contact me at my email addy (on the ‘Contact’ page), or if you’re a pal, you can always call. I won’t be receiving any DMs for the time being, and I’ve put a hold on my other platforms on Twitter, FB and Instagram.

But I’ll be thinking of you all! I hope you have a fantastic year, and all good things come your way. Take care of yourselves and each other, #LoveOzYA and see you round.


See ya, 2016 – don’t let the door hit you on the way out

December 22nd, 2016|0 Comments

This has been a shit year.

Sorry to say it so baldly, but it’s true. On the world stage, lots of famous people who I like died – Alan Rickman, for god’s sake! That’s crap.

And politics was equally shite. By the most excruciatingly small margin, Australia voted in another conservative government for a few more years of pallid ‘save-our-bacon’ policy, spiced with the occasional blatant attack on good sense and common decency. We’ve got shit public transport everywhere in my state (that’s Victoria, for the uninformed). Education is going down the drain. Health care costs are rising. The arts community in this country has had its funding slashed. We’re still […]

In a State – November 2016

November 14th, 2016|0 Comments

What I’m writing

Ohmigod! I finished the structural edit on the new book!

Yes, that is awesome. But I still l have to prune about 4000 words off it before I’ll feel happy to send it back to my editors. That’s because I originally sent them a manuscript about 20,000 words too long, so…my bad. But now it’s starting to take shape, and that’s a nice feeling.

I’ve sometimes felt ambivalent about this book while writing it, so it’s really good to see that there’s a possibility it might all work out okay. I mean, who knows. It’s a crap shoot. But at least there’s hope.

What I’m doing

At the start of […]

Somebody else’s toothbrush

October 16th, 2016|0 Comments

balmoralSo I went on a road trip for the Stella Schools Program recently. Bec Kavanagh and I drove four hours from my place to Balmoral, west of the Grampians, for a school panel and workshops. The difficulty of driving through the night in someone else’s car, when you haven’t driven stick for years, and you’re tired, and constantly scanning the road shoulder for kangaroos, was offset by the chance to talk (so rare, getting the chance to really talk! Gig time is usually a time of fractured conversations and half-finished, interrupted sentences) and also the chance to listen to music […]

Never kill the dog

October 4th, 2016|1 Comment

Writing tips – every writer I know seems to have some. You have to have some ready, because people ask you for them. I’ve published three books, ergo people think I’m qualified to give out writing tips. Doesn’t seem to matter, as I frequently point out, that I’m no smarter at this business than anybody else. That’s not a lie; I fumble my way around in the dark, just like the rest of the world. People don’t seem to get that. They still ask me for tips, and because I’m chronically polite, I try to give them.

Best writer’s tips I ever read were by Stephen King and Margaret Atwood […]

State of play – September-October 2016

September 27th, 2016|0 Comments

What I’m writing

Yes, I’m still editing


I’ve been trying out Scrivener this month, as almost every author I know seems to be saying it’s the best thing since sliced bread. After working with it for about two weeks, I’m still on the fence. I just don’t know if I’m mastering the software fast enough for it to be useful, and I’m concerned that my lack of competence is making it hard for me to feel confident that I’m backing things up correctly. A couple of other things are annoying – Scrivener adds additional quote marks to Word docs I’ve transferred over, and I have to go through manually and pick […]

State of Emergency – August 2016

August 22nd, 2016|0 Comments

I always feel a bit like I’m in a state of emergency, so this title is something of a misnomer! Actually, it’s not an emergency, but life gets very busy.  I’ve been neglecting my blog lately to do other Very Important Things, but it’s time to pull my finger out…

What I’m writing

I’m in the middle of edits for my new book. I was having a pretty hard time of it, but I had a bit of a brain wave (while listening to How To Make Gravy by Paul Kelly) so now I feel like I know what I’m doing – insofar as its possible to feel like you know […]

On ‘Safe’ books

July 19th, 2016|3 Comments

A letter from a reader:

“I’ve just finished Every Word. I’m 52 and really enjoy YA fiction. My youngest (13) put me on to your books. They are well written, have a great plot, move quickly and are appealing to readers both 13-18 and beyond. I know it is not my place to ask you for anything. But if I could I’d ask you to leave out the swearing and the pre-sex touching and feeling. Your books are great without it. I feel uncomfortable knowing that my daughter has already read the Every series. It’s not something I encourage or condone here. Please don’t take this the wrong way. I’d […]

State of Anticipation – July 2016

July 15th, 2016|0 Comments

I’m putting this stuff down fast, before it slips away…

What I’m writing:

I’m putting the finishing touches on my story for the newly announced #LoveOzYA anthology, which will be released by HarperCollins in May 2017 – it’s nice to finally be allowed to talk about it!  The story is actually finished, but I’m adding a few bits and deleting a few other bits, and basically trying to make all the words sound good.  Does the story have a certain Every series slant, you ask?  Why yes, it does!  I’ll share more about that as we get closer to release.

I’m also thinking that I’d like to submit a story to […]

An Open Letter to my local MP

July 1st, 2016|0 Comments

30 June 2016

Ellie Marney


Dear [name redacted],

Firstly, thank you so much for your kind words and encouragement on the occasion of my recent success with a Creative Victoria Arts Grant for my new work of YA fiction, Off The Grid (working title).  It’s gratifying to receive recognition, and I’m very aware that as a grant recipient, I am one of the lucky few to receive this kind of State endorsement.  I’m hugely grateful to Creative Victoria and to the State government for providing me with the opportunity to bring my manuscript to publication, and thus to a wide teenage readership.

With this letter, I am also taking the opportunity to […]

State of Play – June 2016

June 1st, 2016|0 Comments

LOTS of things happened last month, so much that I didn’t get it all out to you before the month was over.  And as you can see from the title, football season is in full swing here (C’arn the Tigers!) so my household is replete with musty footy socks, dirty jerseys, and the smell of Dencorub.  Coming-into-winter time is when I usually feel like hibernating, but this season I’m making an effort to do some exercise and stay in shape – mentally and physically – for the year ahead…

What I’m writing:

On Monday 9th May I submitted my new book to my editors.  Pressing Send on a submission draft is a special kind […]

Above the waterline

May 24th, 2016|8 Comments

writer stressI get up at six. It usually takes me about half an hour to come back to earth, from wherever I’ve been wandering at night, so in that time I make myself a cup of coffee and take a stroll through social media.  If this was a writing day, I would then get into work: opening up the document on my laptop, settling myself in for the long haul.  But today is not a real writing day, there are too many chores, so instead I make a list of things to do.

I try to keep my list achievable – […]

The Dreaded Love Triangle – Part II

May 11th, 2016|2 Comments

love triangle of doom


Helloo again!  We’ve returned today to continue our discussion of the DLT – Dreaded Love Triangle.  Welcome back!

Last post, I examined what a DLT actually comprises, and had a brief look at their history in literature (or at least, looked at a few examples of DLTs in literature from multiple genres and eras).


I also brought up a number of reasons why DLTs frustrate the hell out of readers.  In fact, some of those reasons were cited in this recent article (‘Shit I’m Sick of Reading’ by Kat Kennedy over at Cuddlebuggery – Kat, we feel […]

The Dreaded Love Triangle – Part I

April 26th, 2016|1 Comment


love triangleHello!   Today, as you might’ve noticed from the title, I’m looking at a little thing that’s bugging me: I’m writing an in-depth examination of the Dreaded Love Triangle! (*cue scary music, the howls of the damned etc*)

But Whyyy? you ask.  Don’t we get enough of that crap in the YA we read?  And there’s the rub – love triangles have become so ubiquitous in YA literature that they’re really not fun anymore.  Time and again, I’ve been told that people are over love triangles, that they were never into them to start with, or that they’re too clichéd for […]

State of the Union – April 2016

April 19th, 2016|0 Comments

So I’ve decided I’m going to start writing a regular thing each month, where I give a brief update of what I’m working on and what I’m doing and events and so on.  Sound all right to you?  Yeah, it sounds all right to me, too.  It’s actually kind of nice to be figuring out my priorities and stuff for the month.  I’ve talked about my love of list-making here, so I guess this is more on the theme.  And please excuse the title, I’ve been watching a lot of The West Wing lately…

What I’m writing:

I’m on deadline this month – April 30th, to be exact, and it’s already […]

Living with the dreary tenants

April 5th, 2016|4 Comments

The thing I find hard about being a writer is that, in between all the busy-ness of daily life, and day jobs, and parenting, and running a small business (which is effectively the kind of approach you have to take, if you want to have any kind of creative career), you just can’t stop thinking about it.

The story, I mean.

So much of writing is in the thinking and day-dreaming, and when you’re busy, quite a lot of that has to happen in the margins.  This is why writing, as a career, has traditionally been done by the upper classes.  Their margins tend to be considerably larger.

Literary community: the golden thread

December 17th, 2015|1 Comment

I found my literary community online on Twitter.

It was 2012, or maybe 2013, I’m not exactly sure – basically it was such a short while after I’d signed my first publishing contract (with Allen & Unwin for Every Breath) that the ink  of my signature was still wet on the page.  This was about the moment when my brother, Jared, said, ‘Ell, you’ve got to get some platforms, mate.  I’m getting you a domain name.  And while you’re at it, learn how to use Facebook properly and get on Twitter.’

golden threadTwitter?  I thought he was mental.  Why would I want to […]