News & Updates

Meet: Rev. Dr Kim Miller

7th June 2009

CYA is so happy to introduce you to Rev Dr Kim Miller. Kim is another CYA success story - however , Kim didn’t place at all in the CYA Competition, in-fact  he was so unhappy with his placing he asked CYA to please remove his manuscript name off the web site. 

BUT Kim didn’t give up, he took the advice he wanted to from the judges, and rewrote the beginning of his manuscript. The end result is 'They Told Me I Had To Write This'. The fantastic  book will be released in July 09 by Ford Street Publishing, and distributed by Macmillan Australia.

A little insight into Rev Dr Kim Miller:

He grew up freewheeling the back streets of country NSW where wheels meant freedom. Life changed when he went to live in a boys home as a teenager. He moved to the city to study engineering but preferred motorbike dirt racing to university lectures. Somehow Kim obtained a PhD from the University of Exeter, UK. His doctoral dissertation bridges theology, religious symbolism and Jungian psychology. Jungian themes sometimes appear in his stories. 

He is married with one adult son, still rides motorbikes and knows a bit about freedom.

Kim works with people in and out of prison, managing a project called Home For Good in Newcastle, NSW. 

CYA asked Kim a few questions about being an author:-

1. If you were not a writer - what would you be?

Blues Guitar Master.

2. How many years have you been writing seriously, before being published?

I wrote pretty seriously as a teenager, and even before my teen years. It was a way of processing my life, pounded out on an old office typewriter. I destroyed everything I wrote as soon as it was finished so nobody could read it. I remember desperately wanting the Olivetti portable typewriter in the local newsagent window for my 12th or 13th birthday. (I didn't get it)

In my thirties I started writing short stories. My first book was published in 2006 and the oldest story submitted for that came from 1988. The editor liked the story but we decided to save it for another collection. That story probably marks when I started writing fiction with the hope of publication. The fact that he liked it meant that I could have started subbing many years earlier.

3. How do you handle the constant rejections in the writers world?

I've been very fortunate in that regard. Most of the rejection I experienced came from within myself and that stopped me from submitting anything. As soon as I decided to send some of my stories to a publisher, I got accepted. I sent ten stories, three were accepted immediately and the editor told me the rest needed more work. I sat around feeling dejected for a month or so, then I woke up. Three were OK, and the others could be made OK. I worked on them until we had seven stories that worked together for the book.

When that book was at the printers I found myself writing a novel. This was a complete surprise, but the work showed promise. I met author Hazel Edwards who gave me a couple of months of mentoring on the book. Hazel could see merit in it, but she could also see how much work was needed. 

I started submitting the book to publishers and started getting rejection letters. Hazel's opinion bolstered my resolve to keep working on the book and keep submitting. I got five rejections and was accepted by the sixth publisher. That is not a long path to tread. The character walked into my head in January 2006, and in July 2009 the book hits the shops.

4. What advise can you give other writers/illustrators out there still on their journey to publication?

Keep reading. Few things expand your capacity as really understanding the lives of other people, even fictional people. 

Get into situations where you can tell stories. Tell stories to your family, to your friends, become a story-teller in their company. Listen carefully to your spoken style. What characters or themes attract or repel you? Self-understanding is important if you are to create well-rounded characters that interest the reader. 

Find people of worth who can respond to your writing strengths and weaknesses. 

The CYA competition gave me a wake up call about getting the opening of my book into better shape. It was bland and the character needed more up-front energy. Because I respected the people from whom the advice came, I took the advice seriously. 

'They Told Me I Had To Write This', is due for release in July 2009, 

published by Ford Street Publishing, and distributed by Macmillan Australia 


You will have a chance to meet Kim in person at the CYA Conference 2009 when he will discuss his journey to publication, and share 'They Told Me I Had To Write This', as well as his experience with being published with a small publisher is like, with you.

You can visit Kim on his web site at:  Kim Miller

That concludes this years success stories (yes there are more, and hopefully this will become a annual event).

Next we introduce you to the presenters, agents, editors and industry professionals who will be appearing at CYA Conference on 12th September 2009. 

Remember to keep those competition entries coming in, there is less than a month till due date left. Get them in the post/email them ASAP.

CYA Later!

Tina & Ally

2009 Program Released

1 June 2009

CYA Conference Program.

Exciting change at conference this year is the addition of a third studio running during the day - with extended master classes of 3 hrs each!

So pop on over to the PROGRAM page, have a look around, and book online today! You will find masterclasses to be conducted by Jackie French, Paul Collins, Colin Thompson, Meredith Costain, Mark Guthrie, Patrick J. Jones, Peter Carnavas and international author Brian Falkner. Workshops will include Pam Rushby, Brian Tucker (CPA Australia),Scott Monk, Jenny Mounfield, Shane Thamm, Dee White, Kathryn Apel and Rev Dr Kim Miller.

Manuscript assessments/pitches by Leonie Tyle ( Woolshed Press, Random House), Kristina Schulz (UQP), Paul Collins (Ford Street Publishing) and Jacinta di Mase ( Jacinta di Mase Management.) 

We will be introducing you each to these fantastic authors, illustrators and industry professional in the coming weeks as the count down to conference continues. As of today : 102 days till CYA!

Remember that places at CYA Conference are limited - so book early.

Reminder to get those competition entries in before 30th June 2009.

Come and visit us on facebook and become a fan  of CYA Conference.


CYA Later!

Tina & Ally

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