Chris Gardner

The joys of self-publishing.


I’m a writer of all kinds of stories, from fantasy and science fiction for young adults to history/mystery and romance for adults. I’m also a mother, of five adult sons, and Nanna to five grandsons. I live in central Victoria, Australia, in a regional city–big enough for shopping and not too big. I’m also an editor and a book cover designer and you can find more about both above.

When my youngest son started school, after many years at home, surrounded by children, I went back to school too. I studied Art and Design and found I was the only one in the class who actually enjoyed the classes where we had to write, rather than draw or paint! I went on to a writing and editing class and then to university, where I graduated around the time my son finished high school! I loved every minute of it. Well, almost.

Since then I’ve written a non-fiction murder, based on my university research, as well as a fictionalised account inspired by that. I’ve just completed the third book of a rural romance series (Red Dust) called Red Wine and Summer Storms–the first is Stony Creek and the second is The Road to Karinya. They’re all stand alone novels, with some characters and places crossing over. For more details of this series and my other books see MyBooks page or visit my author pages on Amazon or Amazon UK. 

Updating this page now in 2020. I’ve written two books since I finished the rural romance series. First, ‘The Letter’, which is historical fiction, one of my favourite genres. It tells the story of two teenage girls who leave Wales in the 1850s, with their parents, for Australia, where their father, a coal miner, intends to join the thousands already on the goldfields. Like many others on the ship both he and his wife succumb to a deadly illness and the girls are left alone. The story starts with their descendant Gabby, in the 20th century, who finds a letter, hidden for generations.

The other book I published more recently is ‘House of Dreams’, a ghost story about a young woman who falls in love with a dilapidated mansion. She’s just won a fortune on a lotto and is determined to bring the house back to life, as her dream house, but the dreams are not what she expected.

As a self-published writer most of my blogs are about the trials and tribulations of self-publishing, as well as the joys, and I hope to impart some useful information for others. My books are available on Amazon as PODs and kindle, as well as other shopfronts such as Apple, Barnes and Noble, Kobo and others through Books2Read.











47 thoughts on “About

  1. Love to get to know you better…..I think we may have some things in common……Thanks for “liking” my blog….

  2. Thanks for your visit. I only have one small plant. Most likely not of the tree variety. In winter I toss some of the dried leaves in the fireplace.

    Continued success on self publishing…I might attempt that, one day. Though I’d love to have a secretary do all the leg work. 🙂

    Only two sons, and one grand…and one on the way.

  3. Thanks for liking my front page. I liked you back. I’d love to see pics of Esky! I’m a cat person, but also enjoy dogs.

  4. Pleasure to meet you!!!!

  5. Nice reading about you

    Thanks for following my blog Browse through the category sections, I feel you may definitely find something of your interest.

  6. Thank you for visiting my blog and liking my post about Weight Loss Quest: Day One. It’s great to meet you. Esky is absolutely beautiful. We have a little doggie, a bichon shih-Tzu, almost two, who is the love of our lives, besides our two wonderful teenage daughters, of course. I look forward to reading your posts.

  7. Thanks for stopping by my blog and liking my about page. Have a wonderful week!

  8. AnElephantCant visit Oz too often
    Hasn’t seen his beautiful boy for some time
    But he wants you to know
    That he likes you and so
    He says hello with this silly rhyme

  9. What an interesting life you must lead. We have some things in common. I, too, am mother of five…2 daughters and 3 sons. I have 13 grandchildren and only started my site 2yrs ago now although I have written since I was a girl. Look forward to seeing what else you have to offer.

  10. I admire your dog. My wife, Christine, and I rescued a Siberian being maltreated by two winos living in their car on the bank of the Rogue River in Oregon. “Rogue” fit that dog as a name, and he shared our house-truck as we wandered around these United States looking for our place and he abandoned us as soon as we found it.

    Your blurbs and the background for your e-books was fun reading and I’ll start collecting the paperbacks as soon as funds permit. My reader software for PC wasn’t compatible with the Kindle free samples.

  11. I hope you didn’t take Rogue’s abandonment personally! Siberians are great escape artists and once they’re out they can run for miles. Esky has taken off on several occasions and he now wears our phone number around his neck. Fortunately he loves everybody and most people like him and are happy to hang on to him for us. He was abandoned himself, as many are; they’re a bit of a handful. Now he’s around 8 and a lot quieter but would still escape if we gave him the chance.

  12. I figured Rogue just wanted to keep on truckin’ and hitched a ride back to Oregon; he jumped ship down in Naples, Florida while we were living on a boat at City Dock. The weather–daily thunderstorms, and heat annoyed him. Rogue didn’t care much for luke-warm salt water either. I’ll bet he hitched all the way back to the Rogue River.
    Australia, as idea, appealed to me. Your stories have convinced me that there’s not much difference between there and here other than spelling colour and tyre.

  13. The spelling thing’s odd, isn’t it? It’s become fairly acceptable now to use USA spelling here and I’m not sure if I approve or not. I’ve done some writing and editing for US and it’s got to the stage sometimes I forget which is yours and which is ours. I haven’t been over your way but we are, like most of the world, inundated with movies etc and I think some parts are not much different to Oz.

  14. You mentioned doing some genealogical research and discovering your heritage. Dividing yourself into quarters amused me. Shortly before she died I flew out to San Francisco and had long talks with my mother, asked her all those questions I’d asked as a boy which she refused to answer. I placed my tape recorder on her coffee table and interrogated her. Once she opened up the stories flowed and I discovered that she was an excellent story teller. After returning home I transcribed the tapes and then began writing letters to mother’s sisters and women she’d known since childhood, collecting corroborating testimony. In no time at all I had the family saga from the day of my mother’s birth—which was a tragic beginning—until her death at age 76 from cancer. It’s all up there on a shelf in a three-ring binder; the pages are turning brown and crispy. I cannot read it.

  15. Not sure if I mentioned I did something similar with my mum but never got around to transcribing it all. Still have a tape but nothing to play it on! Even if you can’t read it some-one else in your family might appreciate it one day.

  16. Hi Chris! Thank you for stopping by my History Undusted, and Stephanie Huesler blogs! Good luck with your writing!

  17. Hello, thanks for stopping by and liking my post.

  18. Hello, and thanks for dropping by! Just out of curiosity, which genre is your favorite to write in?

    • Good question, Holly. Beast of War, a kids’ fantasy, was fun, mostly because I really enjoyed the characters and also that I had no restrictions. I also enjoyed Inheritance, which I still find a little hard to fit into a genre–it’s for adults and it’s part contemporary and part historical, definitely not a romance–maybe suspense is the best way of describing it. The problem with having to put books into a genre is that you are then expected to follow certain rules and I personally don’t like that restriction. I’m currently working on a rural romance and having to discipline myself a bit–probably do me good!

  19. Hello Chris,

    Thank you for liking my recent blog post “Can’t beat them? Try harder!”. Good to hear from a fellow Aussie! Your books look great and I particularly like the most recent one, the non-fiction on a family murder. Love to hear more about it! Will now follow your blog.

    All the Best,
    Christine Sun

  20. Wow! I found the introduction bit quite interesting, Christine and so do your books sound. I don’t mind reading them. Maybe some time soon.

    I own a mischievous retriever. I like your Esky better! At-least he doesn’t look as naughty.
    Good luck.


    • Ha! Looks can be very deceiving, Asha! I thought retrievers were pretty well-behaved but yours may be young, is it?

      I hope to have a new book up soon, ‘Her Flesh and Blood’, which will be free for the first few days and I’ll be letting everyone know the details on my blog. It’s pretty dark though and if that’s not your thing I have a young adult sci-fi, Sanctuary, which is a good read for all ages.

  21. Hi Chris,

    Thanks for stopping by my blog. Happy to have found you. Looking forward to reading and chatting more. 🙂

  22. Thanks for liking my Gratitude Journal. I’m always happy to meet fellow writers, even if they do live half way around the world!

  23. Thanks for wandering through my blog and liking my CreateSpace and Me post. I know that I am only feeling so terribly bewildered because I am pressed for time on this publication. If time were not an issue, I would probably be quite content with CreateSpace, they do make the impossible possible. i look forward to getting to know you 🙂

    • I noticed your post because I’ve done a quite a bit with CreateSpace myself, but for better or worse I have done everything myself. I have done quite a bit of free-lance editing and although I should probably still have another pair of eyes, and sometimes do, I haven’t used any of CreateSpace’s services. I have had trouble with the formatting but that’s my fault and I’m learning!

      • It is a learning curve for all of us. My husband is very tech savvy, and I still can’t get him to consider formatting my writing for me. He gets worried about translation errors, hyphens, widows, orphans, and rivers…things I cannot begin to understand, but he doesn’t want to be held accountable if something goes wrong. Chris McMullen at
        has some wonderful advice for those who are competent at the DIY techniques, and some helpful articles for writers/authors in general. Maybe I will brave that territory some day.

  24. Thank you so much for viewing my blog, and thank you also for you kind comments on it. I am new to the blogging world and still have so much to learn. I am excited to read your novels and as soon as I can budget them in I will have them on my kindle. Thanks again.
    Gracie Lynne

  25. Hey! I get so lost in these technological mazes it’s impossible to track anyone down!! Thanks so much for liking my writing. You have absolutely no idea how grateful I am. Cheers, Mate!

  26. Thank you for liking my post today. Very much appreciated

  27. Thank you for liking the post – a review of my book, “Ben’s Challenge”, Chris. As you can tell, I am also Australian, but live in coastal NSW. We had a warmer winter here than you did, I think. We do have something in common – I have 5 sons, as you do, though a few more grandchildren – 6 by blood and another 4 on my husband’s side.
    I will have a look at some of your work on Amazon, and on here. Wishing you the best.

  28. Thanks for popping into my blog. I am just sitting here feeling very sad for your husky, and his lost ‘pack’ member. I hope your son visits soon!

  29. Thanks for liking my last post, Christine. I am intrigued by the subjects you choose for your books. How do you choose them? And where did you get the history for the last one?

    • Good question, Dave, and it’d probably take an essay to answer properly! My ideas come from all over. My first novel was Sanctuary, a sci-fi for young adults, and the idea came from a documentary I was watching about street kids. One of the girls had a baby and I started thinking about what it would be like if generations were actually isolated underground. In Sanctuary there are two civilizations, one quite primitive underground and another, very different, sheltered above ground.
      Not Guilty, my true crime, took lots of research, mostly from public records and libraries. It evolved from a university thesis which, coincidentally, I have just published as well. It is academic, rather than commercial, but I thought it might have some interest for anyone interested in the subject. It’s called Demented Mothers and will be free for a few days in a week or two. I’ll announce it here so stay tuned if you’d like to have a look. All my research sources are listed in that.
      I’m also in the final stages of editing a fictionalized version of the story, mainly because I was frustrated with what I couldn’t know about the case, and also because I am primarily a creative writer. That is called Her Flesh and Blood and will be available on Amazon some time this year.

  30. Thanks for checking out my blog, — and I look forward to reading yours.

  31. Christine, as you would have noticed, I am only just getting going with my blog. There is much work to be done before it is near the form I would like it to be in. So your encouragement, by being the first person to Like my very first post, is most appreciated.

    I always enjoy reading other peoples’ pet stories and like even more to tell my own. But I will contain myself and just say that my wife and I both really enjoy the one cat and one dog that live with us in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

    Your posts describing your experiences with self-publishing are very valuable to the rest of us planning on taking that same route. I intend to blog my own experiences also as I work toward self-publishing my first eBook.

  32. Chris,

    Thank you for “liking” my blog. I am a newbie to the self-publishing world, so every connection is a blessing. I have a lot to learn about social media, and I am getting my feet wet on WordPress. I wish you continued success in your endeavors.


    • Thanks Michelle, I’d never have got as far as actually having a blog if I hadn’t very wisely given birth to several clever sons many years ago! I taught them to walk and talk–they taught me how to connect with the world. It does get a bit distracting but it’s also very interesting meeting people from all over. All the best to you too.

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