The First Year by Genevieve Gannon

 

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Ziggy and Zeus survived their first year together fairly well! 

 

Goodreads Synopsis

The first year of marriage is hard no matter what. Throw in jealous exes, high-pressure careers and two wildly different families, and the degree of difficulty goes up a few more notches. Determined to beat the odds, one couple comes up with a plan to keep their romance alive – but life has other ideas.

Saskia is an up-and-coming jewellery designer, waiting tables at a trendy cafe to keep her fledgling company afloat. Andrew is a corporate lawyer who wants to be known for more than his family’s money. They’re passionate about their work and each other, but with Andy’s job in jeopardy and Saskia’s jewellery label taking off, the pressure is taking its toll.

As life pulls them in different directions, the two of them are forced to decide: Just how important is their marriage? And how hard are they willing to work to protect it?

My Review

This is the third book I’ve read by Genevieve Gannon, and I think this one is my favourite! The First Year is the story of the first year of the marriage of Melbourne couple,  jewellery designer Saskia and intellectual property rights lawyer  Andy. As you can imagine, they are a bit of an odd couple and face a range of issues during their first year.

I loved that Gannon set this novel in our mutual home town of Melbourne. Saskia and Andy represent two common Melbourne stereotypes and I felt they rang very true. Saskia was a perfect Brunswick hipster type with just the right amount of talent and down to earth attitude to make her likable. Andy was a very typical corporate type with a snobby family. I feel like I’ve met both of them before a couple of times around Melbs!

All of the best parts about Melbourne were included in The First Year. Great coffee, great food, live music, and the thriving arts community were all in there.  I think Melbourne is a fantastic setting for a novel and would love to see more Melbourne based books. I’m also taking this as a sign that Gen will be back one day…everyone comes home to Melbourne eventually!

The First Year also tackled copyright infringement from the perspective of a small designer taking on a big chain. This is such an important issue and I feel like we really do need to be talking and thinking about copyright law more than we do. Copyright law is a mess right now and corporations hold all the cards. On one hand, we have designers being ripped off and losing money due to copyright infringement. On the other hand, the public domain is shrinking rapidly because the length of copyright has been extended so much over the past century. The public domain is essential to continue creativity because all great ideas come from somewhere. If there are no new ideas in the public domain then we will very quickly run out of new ideas.

The Creative Commons was created as a response to the ever-shrinking public domain. There are images and sound files you can use in your own works with correct attribution and you can also find a copyright license to use for your own works. And the licenses are written in plain English, so it’s very easy to use and find exactly what you’re looking for. It’s an essential tool for everybody who creates on the Internet!

Details

Title: The First Year

Author: Genevieve Gannon

Published: April 24th 2017 by HarperCollins

Genre: Romance

Pages: 347

My Rating: 5/5 stars

 

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Beautiful Messy Love by Tess Woods Melbourne Book Launch @TessWoodsAuthor

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Calling all Melbourne romance readers!

You are all invited to the upcoming Melbourne book launch of Tess Woods, Australian romance author. This is a free event where I’ll be in conversation with the lovely Tess Woods about her new book Beautiful Messy Love. There’ll also be a book signing and refreshments. Hope to see you there!

This event is being held at Dymocks Booksellers, 234 Collins St, Melbourne on Thursday, August 10th, 2017 at 6:30 pm.

For more information visit the Beautiful Messy Love Melbourne Launch Facebook Event

Register your attendance at trybooking.com

Looking forward to seeing lots of Melbourne readers and writers there!

Tips for new bloggers

Entering the blogosphere for the first time can be a daunting prospect. There seems to be thousands of articles and blog posts online that guarantee they have the best blogging advice and they all contradict each other. This blog post is different from the rest because I’m not here to tell you exactly what you need to do to make your blog go viral with step by step instructions. Instead, I have put together some helpful blogging tips I’ve learned while studying Internet Communications and blogging that will make setting up a new blog easy.

Develop your blog’s identity and theme

Your first task is to take some time to develop your blog’s identity and theme. Decide what you will be blogging about and then make sure all of your blog’s features match that identity. The name of your blog, the blogging platform you select, the layout and colours you select, and the topics you write about, should all reflect your blog’s overall identity and theme.

A great way to help you work out your blog’s identity and theme is to write a detailed ‘About’ section on your blog. Your ‘About’ section should include information about who you are, why you blog, and the kinds of things you will blogging about.

You can choose to keep your true identity private by choosing a pseudonym and developing your blog’s identity and theme around that. Using a pseudonym provides a lot of scope for creativity as you will need to create an entirely new character!

Get Social

Select the social media platforms that best suit your blog’s identity and theme.

Facebook and Twitter are good social media platforms to connect with readers due to their popularity, although Facebook can be difficult to build traction unless you are prepared to pay for advertising.

Instagram is fantastic if you enjoy taking your own photos and there are a lot of active blogging communities there.

Take some time to search for hashtags and topics that are relevant to your blog on different social media platforms to get a better idea of where people who are interested in the same things as you like to hang out.

Most digital professionals recommend that you should have at least three social media platforms connected to your blog. Three platforms is a good amount for most bloggers, but the amount of social media platforms you choose should really be however many you feel comfortable with. Many bloggers are perfectly happy to simply blog with no social media accounts at all.

Once you have selected your social media platforms make sure they reflect your blog’s identity and theme and are connected to your blog. Use the same colours in your social media cover images and condense your blog’s ‘About’ section to fit in your social media bios.

Connect with other bloggers

Once you have developed your blog’s theme and identity and set up your social media accounts it’s time to connect with other bloggers. If you are using a blogging platform that has a connected news feed such as WordPress or Blogger, start by searching for topics that are relevant to your blog and get reading.

Reading other blogs will help you with your own blog because it will give you an idea of what topics are relevant to your readers. When you come across an interesting blog post make sure you hit the like and follow buttons and leave a comment to let the blogger know how much you enjoyed their post. You will also find lots of blogs to read on social media using the same method.

It’s impossible to read every blog post every day, but when you do spend time reading other blogs you will find that leaving relevant and thoughtful comments will inspire most bloggers to come and have a look at your blog too.

Develop a posting schedule that works for you

It’s a good idea to develop a posting schedule that will work best for you. Some bloggers post every day, some post once or twice a week, and some post whenever they have time. Make sure your posting schedule fits in with your current schedule and do your best to stick to it. Setting yourself blogging deadlines will help you to plan ahead and manage your blogging time better.

I hope these tips help you get started on developing a blog that you love. Taking time to develop your blog’s identity and theme, setting up your social media accounts, connecting with other bloggers, and developing a posting schedule, will help you decide on the blogging choices that will work best for you.

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I love to connect with new bloggers! You can find me on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and Instagram