All posts by J Mary Masters (Judith)

I am an Australian novelist writing to entertain women readers. I am the author of the Belleville family series. Book 1: Julia's Story (previously published as The House of Secrets: Julia's Story) Book 2: To Love, Honour & Betray Book 3: Return to Prior Park

Oops ….. I tweeted about submarines today …. except I did it in the wrong Twitter account

The crew of HMAS Waller prepare to come alongside Fleet Base West, on their arrival home from a five month deployment.
The crew of HMAS Waller prepare to come alongside Fleet Base West, on their arrival home from a five month deployment.

I couldn’t believe the blooper I made today. Without thinking, I tweeted about a submarine story that we were running in our newsletter ….. except I didn’t check to see which account I was logged into.

I must confess it was my ‘writing’ persona – J Mary Masters that I was logged into – where I tweet about anything to do with books and writing.

Next time I will check to make sure I’m in the right Twitter account – my real life, professional, publishing role in Australian military and business circles where we write about the procurement of capability for the Australian Defence Force.

The tweet didn’t last long – but it is a salutary lesson isn’t it?

I won’t be writing a novel about submarines, by the way. The submarine pictured is one of 6 Collins Class submarines in the RAN fleet.

Life imitates art … or is it the other way around?

Life imitates art - well, my book cover
Life imitates art – well, my book cover

I looked at these flowers this morning in my living room and realised just how closely they resembled the image I used on the ‘new and improved’ cover of my first novel – The House of Secrets: Julia’s Story. I bought them at the local farmers’ market on the weekend. Roses are so beautiful.

What I want to know is  – how do you combine a full time career – I’m a publisher of magazines for Yaffa Media – with the burning desire to get out there and promote my book and be a full time writer! Any ideas! Neglect my poor husband maybe? Don’t cook dinner and send out for pizza instead – we haven’t done that in years!

A couple of reviews have been posted on and on – very positive. I was so delighted really because as a first time novelist, I need the feedback to tell me I’ve written something worthwhile. Now I know I have to do book 2 and book 3, because it will take that long to tell the whole story.

All advice welcome as to how to balance the two worlds……..

Read my book for FREE online ….

I just wanted to let everyone know that I’ve made my book available FREE OF CHARGE – LINK HERE

This format does require some patience. Otherwise I’ve reduced the price on and Kindle – and also it’s available to Australian readers on – also on special this month.

The House of Secrets

The House of Secrets … is still The House of Secrets … but with a new cover and sub heading ..

The House of Secrets Julia's Story by J Mary Masters
The House of Secrets
Julia’s Story
by J Mary Masters

I’ve been working on this for a few days now – and I decided finally not to change the title of my first novel – just define it.

It is now THE HOUSE OF SECRETS – Julia’s Story – with a much brighter cover. (I must have looked at hundreds of stock photos to find this image, but I think it works.)

I was really excited by a 4 star review posted on – you can see it here in this link – and yes, the cover is being updated on Amazon and Kindle very soon.

I still haven’t had any big offers from regular publishers – there’s no doubt I’ll blog about it if I do – but I’m not letting their lack of response deter me. Just trying to find enough time in the day to do everything (including my day job that pays the bills) as well as recover from a bout of the ‘flu.

Sleepless night, light bulb moment, changing my first book’s title ……

OK, so I said I was getting the cover of my first novel The House of Secrets re-designed .

And then I started thinking about the limitations of the title – it isn’t a horror book or a spine tingler – and I came to the decision that the title wasn’t right.

I’m not going to reveal yet what the new title is, in case I change my mind again. (I can just see all those men nodding knowingly.)

So I spent most of yesterday evening trawling stock image sites for a suitable image – and I think I’ve found something suitable.

Downtown Abbey couldn’t even drag me away from my search! So watch this space!

The House of Secrets: Belleville Family saga Book 1: Over 350 Kindle downloads ….

Well, I had over 350 Kindle downloads of my book during my FREE period.

I don’t know whether that’s good (good numbers) or bad (because I don’t get any $$$). Still, I want people to read my book. In fact you can see it all for free at this link – but I think it needs patience to read it in this version.

Now, the other big news is that …. no, I haven’t been offered a big contract …… I decided to re-design the cover. I wasn’t happy with it because my book is a family saga/romance and the cover looked a little spooky, so my graphic designer is working on it.

A new cover should appear in a day or so. It is going to be very very different. …….

But if you can’t wait for the new look –  the content will be the same. You can buy it from – link here

I’m still working away at my day job ….. where I am a publisher (but in the magazine world).

My book is FREE on Kindle …. but hurry or you’ll miss it

Poinciana in full flower in the street where I live
Poinciana in full flower in the street where I live

Are you an e-book reader? I’m not especially wedded to the format although I have the Kobo and Kindle APPS on my iPad. I know it is convenient particularly for commuters so I’ve released THE HOUSE OF SECRETS on Kindle and it’s FREE to download for a short period …. just a few more days. I hope if you like it you’ll tell me. If you don’t think my book is any good, we can all be very grown up about it.

Very soon I’m going to start posting some photographs of places and things that inspired me to write it.

For example, in the book I described the gift Julia receives from Catherine on her wedding day. Ha, ha – you’ve got to read the book now and find out what it is …. but I have the very thing in my possession and it dates from 1942 … I won’t say more until I post the photo, except to say that it belonged to my aunt, my mother’s younger sister. Oh, and yes, my mother was an inspiration for one of the characters in my book. 

I’m posting a picture of a Poinciana tree in full bloom in our street late last year – the tree isn’t a native of Australia but it does very well in my home town of Brisbane. I’m posting this picture for no other reason than the beauty of a tree. I love trees!