Books By The Beach: Grave Bargains at Palm Beach

And here we are, stop no.10 on my Books By The Beach tour!

Palm Beach has been voted cleanest beach in Queensland three times. Jefferson Lane hosts some of the earliest and most basic of Gold Coast beach “shacks”, some on blocks of land valued in millions of dollars. There is some suggestion that these in fact predate the subdivision of the area in the 1950s, and other remnants of an earlier settlement.

Palm Beach One

The area is bounded to the north by the mouths of Tallebudgera Creek to the north and Currumbin Creek to the south. There are nearshore bait reefs along Palm Beach and offshore there are fishing reefs that are some of the most productive of the Gold Coast.

Palm Beach 1

In this post I will be sharing with you about my short story Grave Bargains.

In the wake of an unforgivable act against his family, Peter is determined to bury the past and start fresh. His good intentions are challenged by a sinister stranger, who is determined to dig up his sins, and threatens to jeopardise his efforts to make amends.

I got the idea for Grave Bargains after watching American Horror Story: Murder House, the first season in the popular anthology series. For a number of years I worked on this story in bursts on and off, before finally completing it in 2017 and launching it on Halloween of that year.

PLEASE NOTE: At the end of this video there is information about purchasing Grave Bargains on Amazon. My books are not currently available on Amazon. Instead you can download a PDF version of the story for FREE HERE: Grave Bargains


Thank-you for joining me here at Palm Beach! See you next at Currumbin Beach!


Books By The Beach: The Wilted Rose at Tallebudgera Creek

Welcome to Tallebudgera Creek, stop no. 9 on my Books By The Beach tour!

Tallebudgera Creek

Tallebudgera Creek is by far one of my FAVOURITE spots here on the Gold Coast. Where I am sitting in this video is on the Burleigh National Park side of the creek. Here there is a small, quiet beach, and I love to come here on a weekday when the crowds have gone and read a book or do some writing. Sitting on the sand, you can smell the rich aromas from the australian native plants and trees just behind you.

Talle 3


By hang on, you say. This is Books By The Beach, not Books By The Creek!

Let me explain…

Tallebudgera is best known for its sparkling creek which is framed by the Burleigh Heads National Park on one side and Palm Beach on the other. However, this popular beach destination starts its journey further inland, from the Springbrook Plateau below Burleigh Mountain in the Springbrook National Park near Upper Tallebudgera, and north of the New South Wales/Queensland border. The creek flows generally north by east through the Tallebudgera Valley towards Burleigh Heads before reaching its mouth, south of the Burleigh Head National Park, and emptying into the Coral Sea. The creek descends 100 metres (330 ft) over its 25-kilometre (16 mi) course.

Talle 2

Tallebudgera Creek is known for good fishing, and its name even translates in an indigenous language to “good fishing”. Bream, flathead, whiting and even bull sharks call the creek home. Camping, swimming, picnicking, and kayaking are other popular activities amongst visitors.

While the waters in the creek are renowned for their relative calm, the surf waves are within walking distance at nearby Tallebudgera Beach.

In this post I’m going to share with you about my book The Wilted Rose.

The Wilted Rose is the story of one Australian family’s struggle with mental illness during the 1960s and 70s. The story depicts the rise and fall of ambitious young woman Sarah Ross, whose pursuit of a nursing career in the 1950s is challenged by tradition and religion. After Sarah’s mental health deteriorates, her dedicated husband Jack adopts the role of her carer, and their daughter Grace must survive adolescence through great adversity, before their family finally receive a definitive diagnosis for Sarah’s condition. The Wilted Rose is a moving story of passion, heartache, and unbreakable family bonds.

I started working on this book around the age of eighteen, and published it at twenty one. I held a launch for the first edition at the Suited To Success office in Fortitude Valley, Brisbane, attended by several of my friends and family. The first print run of the book, which consisted of fifty copies, sold out quickly.

I held another launch for the revised edition in August 2012 at the now closed Black Cat Books and Cafe in Paddington. Guests at this book launch included representatives from various community groups associated with the book’s subject matter, including mental health organisations and local historical societies.

PLEASE NOTE: At the end of this video there is information about purchasing The Wilted Rose on Amazon. My books are not currently available on Amazon. Instead you can download a PDF version of the first chapter for FREE HERE:

The Wilted Rose Chapter One

If you live in Australia, I can post you a signed paperback copy of The Wilted Rose. Simply send me a message via the Contact page.

The Wilted Rose


Books By The Beach: A Kind Gesture at Burleigh

Welcome to Burleigh, stop no.8 on my Books By The Beach tour!

Burleigh Heads is a suburb that extends north to Miami Headland, and south to Tallebudgera Creek, Palm Beach. The centre of the neighborhood is James Street, which consists of cafes, delis, hairdressers, retailers, chemists, restaurants and charity stores.

Burleigh 1
Burleigh Beach


Burleigh Heads’ surf break attracts surfers from the Gold Coast and beyond. At the headland of Burleigh, locally known as “The Point”, is a popular vantage point for surfing spectators. On Sunday afternoons, bongo drum players gather in Justins Park for a jam session, which attracts a crowd for a picnic dinner in the park. Many also practice acrobatics, juggling and hula hooping to the beat of the drums.

Burleigh 3
Burleigh Beach

Indigenous Australians inhabited the area of Burleigh Heads for thousands of years prior to European settlement. The Indigenous tribe were known as the Kombumerri clan, who had named the area ‘Jellurgal’. The Jellurgal Aboriginal Cultural Centre is based at the foot of the Burleigh Headland, alomgside the pristine Tallebudgera Creek.

In 1840, James Warner was commissioned to survey the coastline near Moreton Bay. Warner named the Headlands near tallebudgera Creek ‘Burly Head’ because of its massive appearance. Decades later the name was adapted to the more genteel spelling of ‘Burleigh Heads’ and was declared a town reserve by the Queensland Government in 1871.

Burleigh Heads has a number of heritage-listed sites, including the David Fleay Wildlife Park located on Tallebudgera Creek Road. Burleigh Headland is part of a wildlife corridor connecting coastal forests south to the Queensland New South Wales border ranges.

The Gold Coast skyline can be seen in the distance from Burleigh Heads. The north-east facing beach is protected by the point to the south and offers one of the best swimming, body boarding and surfing beaches on the Gold Coast. A mature stand of Norfolk Island Pines form a backdrop and are home to native birds.

Burleigh 2
Burleigh Hill, with a view north of the Gold Coast skyline

The Quiksilver Pro, an event on the World Surf League, is often contested at Burleigh Heads when the surf is not contestable at Kirra or Snapper Rocks.

A Kind Gesture is yet another short story that put me through my paces. Loosely based on true events, A Kind Gesture tells the story of Stuart, a lonely divorcee who picks up a young hitchhiker on a cold night in Chicago. As their encounter progresses, it becomes obvious that neither is who they seem.

PLEASE NOTE: At the end of this video there is information about purchasing A Kind Gesture on Amazon. My books are not currently available on Amazon. Instead you can download a PDF version of the story for FREE HERE: A Kind Gesture

Thank-you for joining me here at Burleigh! See you next at Tallebudgera Creek!