Tasmanian Indie Authors

We are a diverse group of talented writers with a wide range of skills and experience as independent authors. We love what we do, and we do it with passion. We are the Tasmanian Indie Author Group.

Georgina Makalani

The Flow of Ink

Genre: Fantasy and Science Fiction

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I like to be in control and wanted to be able to control how I published, and how my stories were presented. Indie publishing allowed me that control.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

I am working on building a business with my writing. I would love the time to write all the stories that are scratching at the inside of my skull and earning more from my writing would allow that time.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Write as much as you can, learn from your writing and don’t worry too much about what people say you should be doing. Everyone writes differently.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Doing it yourself is challenging, but well worth it. Research well first, and talk to other indie’s before taking the leap.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I am a discovery writer, or pantser. I’ve tried outlining but it doesn’t work for me. I usually start with an image, a scene or a character and then the story grows from there. It unfolds for me as I write in the same way a reader would discover the plot as they are reading. 

You can find Georgina online here:


Tara Marlow

Wildlight Publishing

Genre: Women’s Fiction and Suspense/Thriller

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

When I first looked at publishing my first novel, Camino Wandering (women’s fiction), it did not fit into the traditional mould forCamino de Santiago based novels. So, I decided the Indie route was best. From there, it’s been an exciting – and sometimes frustrating – journey of self-publishing.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

It is definitely a business for me. I’m an author AND a small business owner. My goal is to publish two books a year, about women facing seemingly insurmountable obstacles, learning who they are and what they’re made of.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Write down your dreams… You never know what idea they may spark.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

There’s a TON of information out there about indie publishing. Don’t be intimidated but also don’t believe everything you read. (Remember that adage, if it sounds to good to be true…) Learn wherever you can – Join writing groups, Facebook groups, attend free webinars – so that you can recognise the themes of what actually works for most.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

My novel, Beneath the Surface (thriller), was created from a dream.

You can find Tara online here:


Danielle K. Girl

Lucas Publishing

Genre: Fantasy – Historical, LGBTQ+ and SciFi 

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I did dabble in sending out my work to Trad publishers at the start, but my other half was adamant that Indie was the way of the future! So after a few rejections I got into self-pub. I found the Australian Trad pub industry very restrictive in terms of what I was trying to publish at the time, which was YA. There were very few agents who were taking on YA – despite Harry Potter being huge, go figure! – so it was an easy switch to self-pub. 

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

Business, for sure. I’d love to be earning a full-time wage through my writing. 

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Just write. It’s that simple, and that hard. But seriously, stop aspiring, and just do.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Buckle in for a chaotic ride – ha ha. Nothing worth doing is easy – the learning curves are very steep, but it is definitely doable. 

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I wrote my SciFi series Metal Angels all around the world.  My other half travelled a lot for work, and I got to tag along. The outline was done in Fiji, the story was written in Singapore, Hong Kong, Macau, Pennsylvania USA, Canada, and the final chapter was finished off in a Starbucks in Wuhan, China!

You can find Danielle online here:


A.D. Broadby

Genre: Romantic Fantasy

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

Becoming traditionally published can take a long time. By taking the Indie route, I am able to go at my own pace and also retain full control over my work.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

Right now I write part-time and work part-time. Eventually, I would like to earn a living writing full-time

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Keep at it. Don’t give up. And have patience. If you can dream it, you can do it.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Be prepared for the long haul. Going Indie means overseeing every aspect of the writing/publishing process, which can take time. Also, do your research.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

? I like to act out scenes and dialogue when I’m writing, lol.

You can find Alison online here:


W.R.Gingell

Genre: Fantasy, Urban Fantasy, Science Fiction

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I wanted to be free to write what I wanted to write, and since I’d already had great feedback from publishers I’d submitted to, along with the information that they just didn’t know how they would market what I wrote, I thought I would be able to write and publish more successfully on my own.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

I’ve been writing full time as a business for the last year and a half. Originally when I started I had a five year “plan” to be writing full time in five years; I was able to quit my day job after just over 4 years.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Keep reading; you’ll learn and have fun. Keep writing; you’ll practise and perfect.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Start early. Learn as much as possible about the business of publishing before you actually start publishing. Set up things like your author newsletter and your social media hotspots before you need them, and just weather the years of not many people. All those things will come into their own, and when you need ‘em, you’ll have ‘em.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I write best with earphones on and music playing, in a café with lots of people around. I can’t talk to the people or interact with them, and I have to have my earphones, but I somehow need the people there too.

You can find Wendee online here:


Jillian Brady

Wanderment Publishing

Genre: General fiction, historical fiction, narrative non-fiction – I am exploring it all. 

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

Most commercial publishers would not be interested in a collection of short stories from an unknown writer, and the opportunity came along to work with a fabulous book designer, so it seemed to be the right time to do it. You have to start somewhere.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

I have stories I need to tell. 

Given that I have discovered I really do not like the whole ‘promoting myself- my book into bookstores’ process, and I never expected to make lots of money anyway, I would have to say that writing is more of a hobby than a business for me, or perhaps an artform. 

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Just do it! Start writing. Tell your story. And have fun doing it.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Self-publishing is far more accepted now than in the past so don’t be discouraged, have a go. 

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

My first job was picking mushrooms. I once lived in Vietnam. I have 13 convicts in my ancestry.

You can find Jillian online here:


Suzy Cooper

Genre: Non-fiction

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I looked at the existing model for publishing, which required me to pitch to an agent or publisher and then wait months to see if they replied at all. I decided life was too short to wait for someone else to back my project. 

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

Both. Some of my writing is for pleasure, some of it supports my communications business. 

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Aim to keep learning new things about yourself as a writer until the day you die. Don’t wait until you think you’re ‘good enough’. Just keep trying new things and learning. 

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

There’s power in making the thing you want to make, without waiting for someone else’s approval. Lots of other people will be happy to share what they’ve learned with you, so you won’t be doing it alone. Share what you’re learning too, so other people can see the process rather than just the end result.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I work in bursts. I always thought that was a character weakness, but it seems to be my method. Oh, and I learned a lot about my writing voice from learning to write and perform stand-up comedy. 

You can find Suzy online here:


Kerry Coleman

Genre: Parenting and Families

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I didn’t even think about going the traditional route. I just wanted to write the book and get it out there as I wanted to start talking about it and making a difference. 

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

I hope to encourage parents in their role as first educators of their children. Teachers are dealing with the results of many parents not really understanding this role and I’m trying to make a difference for them and for the kids, starting with getting them eating more natural food and less highly processed foods. Of course, there are benefits for the parents and carers as well. 

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

If an idea just keeps bubbling away and won’t leave you alone then there is someone somewhere waiting to hear it. Get yourself a mentor or sign up with a self-publishing company that will guide you through the process. If you don’t take action it will never happen! If you think you don’t have time, even two or three ninety minute blocks a week can get you to completion. 

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Be prepared to part with some money to make your dream come true. Then dive on in and get it done. 

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I’m learning to play the banjo and I love it. I can throw a silent tantrum by writing in BIG CAPITALS in my journal!

You can find Kerry online here:


Stephen Brown (SJ Brown)

Genre: Crime Fiction

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

To have greater control over the narrative content of the series.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

The satisfaction of creating fiction that entertains readers. As the series grows this venture is transitioning from hobby to business.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Don’t assume you can whip something up just by starting off. Learn your craft and then sit and work at until the prose flows.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Research, very carefully, the avenues open to you so you don’t pour money down the drain.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I include the names of many local people without charge.

You can find Stephen online here:


N E Absolom

Genre: Fantasy adventure

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

To have full control over the process, so I didn’t have to compromise anything. It does then mean you have to do everything from writing to editing to cover design to marketing, but there are great resources and services available to help you produce a quality book.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

To reach many readers and have them love my stories and characters. Would be great to turn this into a living, too! I get so much joy and such a buzz reading reviews and hearing people get enjoyment from my work.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

If you write, you’re already a writer – there’s no aspiring about it!

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Do it! You’ve nothing to lose! The indie author community, worldwide, is incredibly generous and supportive.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I am an urban beekeeper. The magic of bees gets a mention in my work, no spoilers, you’ll have to read to find out!

You can find Narelle online here:

Website:  www.neabsolom.com
Facebook: /neabsolom
Instagram: /neabsolom
TikTok: neabsolom
Twitter: @neabsolom


Anna Schmidt

Genre: Fantasy and Science Fiction

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I knew nothing about publishing last year when I wanted to publish my first book and a friend suggested self publishing. She said your get more control over the outcome of everything about my book, from the cover, the layout of the text through to the distribution, which I do myself through personal sales.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

My writing is based on my business activities and work promotion and I aim to educate the public about intuition, connecting with their spiritual support network and understanding the lower vibrational energy beings in our environment. In my latest book, I share more than 110 real-life experiences, which I have collected over 30 years of my personal and work-related experiences with dark energy beings. They are not as scary as you think! When you have the knowledge and clear understanding of what is out there, you improve your self-awareness and make more appropriate life decisions.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

If you have an idea for a book, start writing! Don’t let doubt get in the way. Read and research about writing – the processes, ideas, and methods other authors use to begin writing a book. Starting is the hard part. If you want to share your information, you will find a way 😊 Self publishing allows you to control the finished product. You can have what you see in your mind, in your hand, and provide the outcome you want for your readers.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Self publishing allows you to control the finished product. You can have Be brave, confident, go step by step and most of all have fun with your book writing process. Challenges help you find solutions and boost your confidence and self-esteem.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I have been attached to the paranormal all my life even from 5 years old when I would see spirits and feel their presences. 

You can find Anna online here:

Website: www.spiritualbe-ing.com.au/

Facebook: /annaschmidtpsychic

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCa_ZzaJr6XAJ4R74_23_yVg


Gemma Chilton

Genre: Literary fiction/mystery

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

More control over the process, better royalties. (I also had no luck securing a traditional publishing deal!)

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

I write professionally, but for magazines. Novel writing is a hobby but I would love to find enough success to be able to devote more time to it.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

The same advice I need to be reminded of myself – just keep turning up and keep writing! 

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Research the process before diving in, I found some really useful resources online, like free ebooks with advice for indie writers, and loved reading blog posts etc of indie authors who have found success, as inspiration. And also – keep writing! 

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I’ll give you two! 

One: my first job as a journalism graduate was writing for a popular 4WD magazine, including test driving new cars (I had to quickly learn how to drive a manual!) and going offroad camping with grizzled motoring journos. I nearly made myself and a photographer crocodile food in the Kimberleys once; that scene might turn up in a novel one day!

Another one: I wrote my latest book across three countries – I started it while on holiday in Thailand, wrote much of it while living for 18 months in the UK, and finished it off back home in Australia.

You can find Gemma online here:


Ingrid Ramsdale

Genre: Historical Fiction

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

Being independently published gives me the freedom to take control of all aspects of my writing from design to marketing and pricing.  

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

My writing started as therapy to help me deal with neurological issues caused by a head injury. Initially I was doing it entirely for the creative outlet. I found the experience was far more rewarding than I anticipated and now realise it can become a career that I can pursue for the rest of my life. 

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Anyone who has a desire to write should just take just take the plunge and dive in, it’s an amazing journey. If you lack self-belief there are some many inspiring groups and courses that can guide you through your first draft. 

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Being an indie author is a steep learning curve and self- publishing requires as much time and energy as your writing.  Do your research carefully and connect with groups that have travelled this path successfully. 

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I prefer to write my first draft with pen and paper and only use technology out of necessity. I find writing by hand allows my stream of consciousness to flow more freely. 

You can find Ingrid online here:


Rick Allen

Genre: Action Adventure-Fiction

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

Initially a rejection from a mainstream publisher.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

It started off a hobby. I have now retired and taken it up full-time.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Just do it! Don’t wait till it’s too late, there is a story inside of us all!

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Ditto the above.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

Since starting writing my seven-book series, my bad guys have really become the bad guys in real life. A lot of events I wrote about have actually – or nearly happened. 

You can find Rick online here:


Simone Yemm

Genre: Memoir

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I worked with an agent for six months and got oh so close to getting a traditional deal. But Covid came along and as a first time author of a memoir I was considered too high a risk. I got wonderful feedback though!

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

I am transitioning into life as a writer. I hope to do a lot more and would love to publish another a book. There are a few inside my head.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Crack out the pen and paper (mouse and keyboard – whatever works for you) and just do it. My book started life as little journal entries. From there it blossomed.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Just write, write, write. When your story is ready to be shared you will find a way.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I love to write with music blaring in the background. It helps to hyperfocus my thoughts onto the task at hand. 

You can find Simone online here:


Tansy Rayner Roberts &
Livia Day

Genre: Fantasy (Tansy) and Cozy Mystery (Livia)

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I’ve been published traditionally for many years, but I enjoy having more control over my titles and career, and having the freedom to put the stories I love directly in the hands of readers.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

I want to build my readership, finding more people who like my stories of historical frocks and magic and murder and cake… writing & publishing is a business for me but it’s also the thing I most love to do.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Find the one kind of story you most want to tell and build a body of work around it. (It’s great advice and I wish I’d followed it years ago – sadly, I never will. Too many different kinds of stories I want to write!) 

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Cover art is the most important tool at your disposal – don’t skimp on it. It’s not enough for it to look great, it also has to pitch your story to the ideal reader.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I once wrote a gender-swapped space opera retelling of The Three Musketeers – as an online serial, publishing each chapter as I wrote it.

You can find Tansy online here:


Steve Dillon

Things In the Well

Genre: Dark Fiction (Supernatural horror, psychological thrillers, dark surrealism, and so on!) I find comfort working in the dark, it makes the real world a little brighter! 

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

Opportunity… Getting published isn’t easy. So, I started self-pubbing then I set up my own publishing company (Things in The Well). 

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

It’s definitely a hobby, lol! My books cost me money. The writing, for me, is the achievement. One short story at a time, one book at a time. 

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Don’t aspire, just write! And write some more. Then go and read it some time later with fresh eyes, revise it, then offer it to strangers to read (not friends or family!) then re-write it. 

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Be ready for Amazon to rip you off every way they can, and don’t expect to make a profit, you’d make more in any number of other ways. 

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I was short listed for a Shirley Jackson Award in 2020 for my novelette ‘Deeper, Darker Things’ which was set on an Antarctic research vessel that left from Hobart. Also, I’ve met both my literary muses, Clive Barker and Ramsey Campbell 😊 I was also once the President of the Australasian Horror Writers Association, and I used to run horror conventions (Oz Horror Con). 

You can find Steve online here:


Chrissy Garwood

Chrisolite Books

Genre: Christian Speculative Fiction, Romantic Suspense, and Fantasy

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

My professional editor suggested that I consider self-publishing after working on my first manuscript. The idea that I could work on each story and release it into the world and then move on to the next one has great appeal.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

I’m working towards establishing a business. I have lots of ideas and the few people who have read my books have encouraged me to keep writing. I’m still learning about the marketing side of the process.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Please don’t expect that first draft to be perfect. Focus on capturing the story, and don’t spend too much time rereading what you’ve written until you have lots of words. Join a writers group, or three or four, and listen to other people sharing about their journey. There are great podcasts available that will help with the basics of writing, but not everything will work for you. Remember that the ideas have to come from you, so learn to find inspiration in the world around you.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Find other Indies who are on the same kind of journey, and talk to each other. Be realistic about your publication schedule. Writing the next book takes time, and then there’s the professional editing and the design stage. Don’t lock yourself into a three-month schedule only to find that it takes four months to do the job properly. Check out what works for other authors, but remember that you are looking for your own unique audience. Connect with your readers and work on the strategies for keeping them up-to-date with your publishing progress without bombarding them with a constant stream of buy-buy-buy.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

When I sat down at my keyboard in January 2018, I thought God was giving me permission to do something fun for the summer holidays. I kept asking if I should stop, and it was only when I had 120,000 words that I realised that writing was going to be a part of my life from then on. Of course, half of those words got the chop before I published that first book in 2019.

You can find Chrissy online here:


Fiona Lohrbaecher

Triffic Publications

Genre: Short Fiction, Children’s, Humour, Poetry, Home Education, Plays

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

Initially I wanted to sell my books at markets while travelling. I wanted to have entire control over the look and production of the book and I wanted to keep all publishing rights. I didn’t want to be kept waiting months or years for someone else’s approval. I wanted to get my work out there so people could enjoy it.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

I want people to enjoy my writing. If I put a smile on someone’s face, then my work is done. I would like to become known as a writer. It’s currently a small business that will develop as I’m able to devote more time to it. 

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Anyone who writes is a writer, you don’t need anyone else’s approval. There’s an audience for all works, so go for it, be yourself, invent your own genre if you like. Your words may change someone’s life, they are your legacy to the world. Do ensure your proofing is thorough, and there is no apostrophe in its, as in ‘the dog dropped its ball.’ 

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Being an Indie Author gives you a lot more freedom and it’s very satisfying to create your own book. The marketing aspect can be challenging but we all need a good challenge. You may not make a fortune but most traditionally published writers don’t either. A friend, who is a successful published author, is looking at Indie publishing as no publishers are interested in his latest book. Publishing and selling your own book gives you a lot of confidence. I know several successful teenage Indie Authors who are already working on their second books.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

When I started writing, I was working as a lecturer in the chemistry department at UTAS. My colleagues and I would sit around the morning tea table and brainstorm ways that you could commit murder. One of my I write because my head gets so full of words that I need to write them down to empty it. I’ve always written short stories because a novel always seemed too overwhelming. A few weeks ago my son said, ‘You need to write a novel.’ I said, ‘Yeah, yeah,’ dismissively. Next morning in bed, the first chapter wrote itself in my head and I started on it that day. I’ve now finished the first draft and am fattening and polishing it up. It’s an old-fashioned comedy inspired by P.G. Wodehouse.

You can find Fiona online here:


Teresa Beck-Swindale

Genre: Non-fiction: Travel/music/philosophy

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

To have control over content, marketing, finances and above all product quality.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

For me this is a business. I set up as a business with the objective of writing “personalised songs” for people or specific events.

I have had a long parallel career as a Librarian, so I have gathered those skills in literature searching, readers’ advice, the classification of knowledge and the interpretation of facts and opinions into a means for making my own products.

The sub plot of my book is “There is no Planet B”. It is an urgent call to action to help save our earth. I can only hope it affects some peoples’ thinking in a positive way.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

To consider exactly what you are offering the world of readers; is it special enough to endure even after you die?

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Decide what is distinctive about your product that sets it apart from traditional publishing and use that as a promotional tool.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I can play a saxophone solo and walk the Spanish Camino, but I can’t pick up chickens!

You can find Teresa online here:


RJ Amos

Kol Sason Press

Genre: Feel good fiction 🙂 Mystery, romantic suspense (and science fiction is coming soon!)

I also write nonfiction and have my own productivity podcast. You can find that at ruthamos.com.au or by searching for A Quiet Life in your podcatcher.

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I wanted to be able to share my stories with as many people as possible as quickly as possible. I wanted people to be able to read what I was writing without having to first wait for the stories to go through a gatekeeper and then wait years for publication.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

I hope to give my readers an escape from the stress of their everyday lives as they read what I’ve written.

At present my writing is a hobby, but I hope to slowly and consistently grow my audience until the writing becomes a business. It’s all about slow and consistent growth. I want to put many more books into the world and to explore all sorts of creative directions in my writing.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

To read as much as you can, and to actually sit down and write. In the end, it comes down to simply putting your fingers to the keyboard (or pen) and writing. The process is what’s important. Enjoy the process. And learn as much as you can about the rest.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

There’s a lot of information out there. I think that Indie Authors need to be prepared for a life of continuous learning and growth. It’s not just about the growth in your writing ability and in the craft, Indie Authors need also to be prepared to learn about business management, formatting, cover design, all the different distribution methods and so on. We don’t have to get it right all at once, but I think we need to be committed to curiosity and to learning and growing.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

When I started writing, I was working as a lecturer in the chemistry department at UTAS. My colleagues and I would sit around the morning tea table and brainstorm ways that you could commit murder. One of my colleagues would meet me in the hallway saying, ‘Ruth, I’ve thought of a new way for you to kill someone!’ Now there’s a statement that could be taken the wrong way!

You can find Ruth online here:


Neil Gardner

GenreHumour and Fantasy

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

It is practically impossible for an unknown to gain the attention of traditional publishers.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

Just to get my stories known.  It’s not a hobby and it isn’t a fully- fledged business.  I’m driven by a desire to create and share my stories.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

I’m not qualified to advise at this stage.  I’m still learning.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

See above.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

In a previous life as a public servant I was sometimes required to write speeches for politicians.  One could say this was my grounding in writing creative fiction!

You can find Neil online here:


Stevie Davenport

Genre: Fiction and non-fiction

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

To have control over the timing and process of publishing.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

With my first novel (A Crack in the Ice) – to write an enjoyable yarn about an extraordinary part of the planet (Antarctica).

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Read lots! Learn to read critically. 

Write! Embrace opportunities to learn and improve. Each state’s writers centre provides workshops and courses – excellent opportunities to learn about the processes of writing; engage with fellow writers, exchange ideas, see what works and what doesn’t.

Tertiary courses in creative writing provide similar opportunities and for gaining a qualification.


What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Useful books about self-publishing discuss steps in the process, what you need to learn and do. Talk to other Indie Authors e.g. at Book Fairs; join an Indie Author group.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

My reading companion on a long motorbike trip around Australia was ‘Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance’ by Robert M. Pirsig.  

You can find Stevie online here:


Ann Williams-Fitzgerald

Genre: Non-Fiction, New Age

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

1999 after I had some books published traditionally (Wisdom of the Australian Animals and Words of Guidance) I decided that I wanted to have control of my future works.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

I have pondered this for a while and it currently falls into a hobby, but I would like to take the time now to continue to write and explore where it might take me.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Just write, put your words onto paper (old school thinker here) or get your thoughts onto your writing device. Keep going, listen to your own inner voice. 

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Indie Authors need support and encouragement from the industry.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I am a fifth-generation Tasmanian, the daughter of a WWII Polish Holocaust survivor and descendant from convicts and 1804 Hobart Town First Settlers. After spending 40 years away from my home state, I relocated back to Tasmania in 2019

My writing covers subjects from spiritual and metaphysical self-help genre through to Tasmanian family history. 

You can find Ann online here:


Sarah Prince

Genre: Children’s literature

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I’d had work published before, but knew that to publish exactly what I wanted, with my own illustrations, just wasn’t going to happen, so I decided to self-publish instead. So my books are exactly as I want them, but it is a VERY expensive exercise, without all the marketing and distribution that comes with a large publishing house!

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

Eventually I would like to make it my business, but money is always an issue. I have six picture books so far, with another two in the pipeline (and loads more ideas!), so here’s hoping!

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Write from the heart. Write with the hope that your audience will fall in love with your story/characters etc just like you. Where possible get professional feedback on your writing (don’t just ask Aunt Lucy because she used to be a teacher!).

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Thankfully nowadays there are great opportunities for Indie authors (like the Tassie Indie Authors Book Fair for example!), but make sure you do your research, it’s way too easy to get ripped off!

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I hated school, then one day I got an A+ on an English essay – my teacher checked me for cheat notes! Since then, I have written all sorts of things in all different genres, but I didn’t find out I could draw until the age of 50! Now I live in a bus and travel around Tasmania writing and drawing and finding inspiration from nature.

You can find Sarah online here:


Ruairi Murphy

Genre: Short Fiction

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I’d written a fine book with insufficient market value. It became a question of whether I believed that the likelihood of making an inadequate profit should deny the book’s publication. Vanity and impatience certainly played their part, too, but there was also the faith that what I had written might be enjoyed by others.    

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

It’s closer to serious leisure. I don’t expect to achieve much beyond getting better at writing. That’s enough most days.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Reading is always helpful. Reading widely is even better, and you may wish to throw in the occasional bad book—you can often learn more from careless writing than you can from good. 

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

I can only speak to the path I followed, which I’m unsure how reflects the typical indie author experience. My journey through the self-publishing industry was challenging and expensive but I enjoyed it immensely. The best part was that I met a lot of wonderful and supportive people along the way, many of whom are part of the Tas indie author community. 

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I’m a librarian who wrote a book about librarians. It’s more of a sad fact. 

You can find Ruairi online here:


Colin Baldwin

Genre: Historical Fiction

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I sent my manuscript to a few traditional and hybrid publishers. Was successful in receiving four replies and decided to stay in Australia with an Indie Publisher.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

It’s a hobby, for sure. If it were not for an event that occurred a few years back, I confess, I would unlikely be a published author today. A letter written in 1918 fell into my hands and compelled me to write. 

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

If you have the desire to tell a story, an urge or something urging you to write, then often there’s no other choice. 

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Do your homework on how to self-publish. Link up with other Indie Authors – maybe on Goodreads, and get to know the good and bad things of the publishing world. 

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I didn’t set out to write a novel. I started dabbling, writing about this 100-year-old letter, then it all took off from there. 

You can find Colin online here:


Peter d’Plesse

Genre: Thriller, Action / Adventure

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I wanted to write a book and get it out there. I started with a literary agent but they wanted to change aspects of my character Alex. As the character was based on a real person, this would have devalued their life experience so I went Indie. This was a hard decision but one I don’t regret. Reader feedback on ‘Fire Eye’ was positive so I’m happy with the outcome. Marketing support is difficult being an Indie but the best part is having control over one’s work to maintain its integrity. 

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

As a side interest, over forty years I’ve written articles on the environment, aviation, local history, general interest and other topics for state, national and international magazines. My articles and books can be read for pleasure while including a lesson or perspective that can be discovered by the more perceptive reader.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Every writer must review, rewrite and check their work many times. However, an author can only do so much. There comes a time when expert assistance is needed. The most important advice is not to scrimp on paying for a good editor and proof-reader. Relatives, friends and family may help but can’t do what is really needed. Good editors and proofreaders understand their role. That is, fix errors, offer suggestions and understand that they are not the author. The author should decide whether to accept or reject those suggestions without worrying about any impact on their relationships.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

See above!

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

Coincidence may appear at the most surprising times. In ‘Web of Crimes’, Valentina is a Kurdish female soldier with black hair, brown eyes and a scar on her face. I was later introduced to Valencia, a female Kurdish fighter with black hair, brown eyes and a scar on her face. She identified a small but significant detail about my character that had to be changed. Even the best research can miss small but important details.

You can find Peter online here:


Jennifer Cullen

Genre: Children’s ecological

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I needed to have control over the graphics and artwork, and wanted the book to be a purely Tasmanian product.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

I am foremost an artist who likes to write and former teacher (40 + yrs.) so my writing intentions steer toward broadening children’s understanding of the world, and stimulating their passion for the natural world, language, and visual art.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Write from the heart, first. Find an editor with whom you connect, to support you with the editing process.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Dive in and trust yourself! You will learn much about writing and yourself and make lovely connections with people along the way.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

Despite firstly being an artist, and the adage ‘a picture paints a thousand words,’ sometimes amid the process of painting, I grab my pen and write, because it is often a more immediate way of expressing oneself, than painting.

You can find Jennifer online here:


John Tully

Genre: Crime fiction, general fiction, historical non-fiction

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

Partly to be able to publish in a very competitive field and partly to support writing in Tasmania.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

Surely there are other reasons why people write? I’ve never cared much about money and isn’t writing a calling rather than a hobby? I’m biting my tongue here.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

You really need to be serious about it, or mad, as finding a publisher is a dispiriting business.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

It’s a hard road but if you feel you have what it takes, stick at it!

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I really don’t like questions like this!

You can find John online here:


Demelza

Genre: Historic Fiction and Poetry

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

Independence gave me the opportunity to work with individuals who were able to guide and encourage me.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

Who know where the leads…presently my capacity is only part-time due to life and study commitments.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Do it! Take courses where you can but if you can’t that’s okay…learn as you go.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

I believe this is a growing area and a good way to achieve your dreams.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

Once my editors have worked their magic I am usually able to compile a complete book of homonyms and mis(s)pelt words. 

You can find Demelza online here:


Emma J Mathews

Genre: Memoir, Self-help

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

It was a more direct route to getting published for me. Plus, I had the added bonus of having some fantastic mentoring and guidance through the writing and publishing process with the Melbourne-based Ultimate 48 Hour Author team. It also meant that I had more control over the content and could see my ideas through to fruition.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

With my first book, my aim is to move into business as a solopreneur, self-care and burnout recovery coach. The book will provide background on my lived experience of burnout for clients. However, writing a memoir was a kind of therapy as it allowed me to truly learn from this adverse and challenging experience.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

To be your true authentic self. Your words should be a reflection of you, so let your uniqueness shine and you will be rewarded for it.  But mostly go forth and write and don’t let the background ‘noise’ get in the way!

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Write first, plan it out and then do the research on Indie Publishing. Otherwise, you may feel too daunted to write, which wouldn’t be a very good place to start out! Also, be prepared to do your own promotion.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I like to connect with nature, be still and reflect before and during the writing process. I love swimming, yoga and poetry!  

You can find Emma online here:


Allan Jamieson

Genre: Non-fiction (mainly) plus Fiction

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I failed to secure an agent, despite years of trying.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

A hobby – it is satisfaction in seeing my thoughts available to anyone via the printed page.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Just write! It is highly unlikely you will ever make money (rather, you will most likely lose money), but see it as mental challenge to create something you will be proud of – ‘your ‘baby’.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Participate!

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

Since retiring from paid work in 1999, I have researched, written and self-published nine (9) books.

You can find Allan online here:


Dorothy Topfer

Genre: Contemporary commercial fiction

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I kept being rejected by publishers and decided to self-publish instead.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

Both. Writing is something I love doing. If I can make it work as a business that would be great – but if not then I will still keep writing as I love telling stories.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

To persevere. It is a very competitive industry but with each story you create you will get so much better.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Keep at it. The creative process is incredibly rewarding.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I particularly like writing about old houses, ghosts and animals. There is always an animal in my stories – a dog, a horse or a cat.


 Anthony Bennett 

Genre: Historical Fiction 

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I was unhappy with the number of rejects.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

It is a hobby. I love writing and using my imagination.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Let your hair down and don’t give up when you receive a knockback. Improve with criticism, it helps.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

As above.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

Writing allows me to unwind after a stressful day. It also allows me to let my imagination flow.

You can find Anthony online here:


Margaret Harris (Greta Harvey) 

Genre: General fiction 

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

 The time involved and lack of control plus I wanted my books to be published in my lifetime, not when I’m gone.    

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

It’s a hobby for my creativity.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Believe in yourself and what stories you have to get out. 

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Believe in yourself and give it a go.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

They’re all feel good tales and set in our wonderful Australia with true blue Aussie characters.

You can find Margaret/Greta online here:


Jo Grant 

Genre: Non-Fiction 

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I became aware of the difficulties for authors to be published through traditional publishers, and having qualified in graphic design, I wanted to share my knowledge to help authors to independently publish as smoothly as possible. Knowing the pros and cons, and especially printers’ expectations, can save time, energy and money. My own independently published book is my sample product.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

As a freelance graphic designer, my aim is to work to assist authors with advice, particularly to help with the layout of their books, to complete a print-ready file.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Don’t give up.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

I would advise Indie authors to get dusty, finished manuscripts out of drawers and to find the most economical methods they need to turn those manuscripts into independently published books. Getting skilled-up with Photoshop and, for example, Adobe InDesign or QuarkXPress is possible through schools such as TAFE. Keep a lookout for advertised relevant courses available.  Being skilled in industry standard software is not only possible, it can save money, while giving authors full control over the look of their books.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I remember I took my young son on a school visit to The Mercury building in Argyle Street, in the 90s, where the local newspaper was printed. The exhilaration of watching the newsprint paper coming off the huge rolls and running at a breakneck speed through the webpress printers, was astonishing, and a sight I have never forgotten. I find the printing processes to be fascinating. I must have been a printer in an earlier life (laughs).

You can find Jo online here:


Melinda Maddock

Genre: Non-fiction  

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

My autonomy is pretty important to me. I wanted to do it my way and not have to conform to anyone else’s rules, timeframes or expectations. 

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

I hope to make my writing more a part of my business. I facilitate workshops that help people use their power to make positive change, and I now hope to inspire more people through my book.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Write a bit every day. Fit it in between the gaps of work and life. Don’t feel you need to set aside large blocks of time to do it because things will always get in the way.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Find yourself a mentor, someone you can go to for advice. There is a lot you can read online about independent and self-publishing, but there’s nothing better than a human at the end of the phone who will answer your questions and encourage you to keep going.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I was a political adviser for ministers and premiers and one of my favourite tasks was writing speeches.

You can find Melinda online here:


David Weeby

Genre: Children’s Fiction  

Why did you decide to be independently published (vs traditionally)? 

I tried the traditional publishers, but after months of sending off my manuscript and answering hundreds of questions, I got no positive responses, if any at all. So, one has to get creative and look at alternatives. Besides I have a message to get out there and have this inner drive to tell my story.

What do you hope to achieve from your writing?  Is it a hobby or a business?

Initially my writing sprung from the desire to explore my creativity as a hobby. But it evolved into a deep desire to share my stories. There are many books in the wings of my mind, waiting to spring to life into the written word. Does this mean a change in career? Perhaps? But I’m not giving up my day job, just yet.

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Follow your dreams. Get involved with writing courses and meet and talk with other writers. It’s great to have a supportive community, and really good for ideas, especially when it comes to publishing.

What about aspiring Indie Authors? 

Having a supportive community of writers gives me a great sense of inspiration, and challenges me to face my own fears, and encourages me to be a better writer and continually hone my craft.

What is an interesting or fun fact about you or your writing? 

I wish I had more time to put aside to write but living on an acre property with extensive gardens, 2 Bee hives, 2 dogs, and 5 chickens require a certain amount of my attention. And then I am working 4 days a week. But I also ensure I make time for bush walking, and love going on extended hikes to immerse myself in the beauty of nature.

You can find David online here:


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