Sara Foster is an internationally published, bestselling author living in Western Australia. She has written seven novels: The Hush, You Don’t Know Me, The Hidden Hours, All That is Lost Between Us, Shallow Breath, Beneath the Shadows and Come Back to Me. Her latest published work is a novella, The Deceit, first released as an Audible Original in July 2022 and published by Blackstone (US/Can) in February 2023. She is currently working on a new psychological suspense When She Was Gone, due for release in 2024.

Sara is passionate about writing strong female characters and incorporates contemporary themes into her books, which often traverse the genre areas of psychological suspense, family noir and crime thrillers. She recently graduated from Curtin University with a Vice Chancellor’s Commendation for her PhD work on maternal relationships in dystopian fiction with young adult heroines. Her work has been optioned for television and You Don’t Know Me was turned into a chart-topping crime podcast dramatisation by Listnr. 

Sara writes regularly for her readers on her Substack Novel Thoughts and Wild Ideas

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  • Motivated Monday 💪🏻
I’m still on a high after the Pink concert on Saturday - I’ve wanted to see her live for such a long time and it lived up to every expectation - I adore her music, her authenticity and the joy and energy she brings to everything. I was up in the rafters though so next time I need to get a bit closer and not have to sit down through the whole thing 😜
To start with this week I’ve got my head down editing book eight and writing book nine, so I’m in my happy place. And my substack tomorrow is all about how we value our words as writers ❤️ Then on Friday I’m travelling down south to talk to readers in libraries at Harvey and Australind and I’ll put up another post with all the details. Hope to see some of you there!
  • Every week I check in with one of Australia’s favourite authors to bring you their latest news, and this week I’m delighted to welcome my lovely friend @ajbettswrites , whose latest YA novel One Song was just announced this week as a Notable Book by the Children’s Book Council of Australia! 

So, A.J., tell us what you are... 

READING: Currently, ‘Comedy, Comedy, Comedy, Drama’, the memoir of actor-comedian Bob Odenkirk. Before that was ‘The Hummingbird Effect’ by Kate Mildenhall.

WATCHING: The latest series of ‘Curb Your Enthusiasm’. Soon I’ll be watching ‘The Greatest Night in Pop’ and the Michael J Fox doco ‘Still’.

LISTENING TO: Music: I’ve been in an Elbow mood lately. Podcasts: Bang On, The Book Show, The Book Shelf, TOFOP, and plenty more.

THINKING ABOUT: Today: my new manuscript ... plus how to manage this writing-working life (thinking TBC)

WORKING ON: A new manuscript! I’m not ready to say much about it except that it’s very different to my previous books, in a genre that resists classification. I’m about 35,000 words in and, unusually for me, I don’t have the rest of the story mapped out. Every day involves discovery and surprise. (Today I was surprised when my character fled the scene, for instance.) I have no idea if other people will enjoy the story but I’m having a tonne of fun with it, which is the most important thing right now.
  • Motivated Monday! I have so much to write this week, on Substack and for different fiction proposals, but I want to take a moment to celebrate an author friend who really motivates me with her courage and determination to stand up for what she believes in. I’ve watched @tesswoods_author work tirelessly behind the scenes for the last few weeks talking to people in every sphere of life to try to raise awareness of the suffering in the Middle East, and champion all those who advocate for shared peace rather than polarisation. She has a huge heart and is well worth listening to and following. I know this kind of advocacy takes a lot out of an individual so well done Tess, I know so many people in our community who are very proud of you - and we all need to get behind you and those like you. 

This is Tess’s short speech yesterday at the Perth Writers Festival at the start of the ‘High Concept’ session:
  • Some wonderful sessions and familiar faces at Perth Writers Festival this afternoon! Lots of inspiring conversations - and I came away with so much more to read!
  • A weekend read for you! You know the frustration when you come away from a conversation wishing you could have explained your thoughts better? This happened to me recently, when I heard the question ‘Should we give up on older men?’ - so I wrote about it on my latest post for Substack. I’m all about supporting and championing women, but I’m not anywhere close to giving up on all older men! Read on to find out why 😀 Link in my bio.
  • Every week I check in with one of Australia’s favourite authors, asking them five quick questions, and to tell us about their latest book. This week I’m delighted to welcome crime writing legend and my dear friend @dervlamctiernan 🎉

ABOUT DERVLA: Number one internationally bestselling author Dervla McTiernan is the critically acclaimed author of five novels, including The Murder Rule, which was a New York Times thriller of the year and the bestselling Cormac Reilly Series (The Ruin, The Scholar and The Good Turn). Dervla has won multiple prizes, including a Ned Kelly Award, Davitt Awards, a Barry Award, and an International Thriller Writers Award. Dervla is also the author of four novellas, and her audio novella, The Sisters, was a four-week number one bestseller in the United States. The Daily Mail referred to her writing as ‘glorious storytelling to rival John Grisham’ and the New York Times has called her ‘an uncommonly fine mystery writer.’ Dervla lives in Western Australia with her family.

So, Dervla, tell us what you’re… 
READING: Cal Newport’s Deep Work (for the third time)
WATCHING: True Detective - Night Country.
LISTENING TO: All The Sinners Bleed by S A Cosby
THINKING ABOUT: My upcoming book tour!
WORKING ON: A new book (always)

TELL US ABOUT YOUR LATEST BOOK: My new book, What Happened to Nina?, is out on 28th Feb in Australia, and a few weeks later in the US and the UK. It starts with a young couple, Simon and Nina. They’re fun, they’re in love ... so likeable ... basically Instagram perfect. Then they go away for a weekend and only Simon comes home. The book’s about what happens next — when Nina’s family is doing everything they can to get to the truth about what happened, and Simon’s family goes to extreme lengths to protect him.

Instagram: @dervlamctiernan 

Thanks for checking in, Dervla!

PS If you’d like to hear Dervla talk about her new book, see her page for tour dates. I have the privilege of interviewing her next Thursday 29th February in Duncraig. Tickets here:
  • I’ve taken on a huge topic in this post. If you feel judged for your silence around big political issues, please read this. If you’re struggling to find your voice in times of conflict, I hope you’ll find some support here. And if you’re despairing at why some people are not speaking out online at this time, this might offer some comfort. Overall, I hope it adds something to the ongoing conversation. Link to read the post is in my bio.
  • Motivated Monday! 
Last Friday I had the privilege of spending an absorbing hour and a half in the company of some brilliant women (and one lovely fella!), all of us led in conversation by the indomitable Sarah Wilson. I’m a long-time fan of Sarah’s work, she’s an incredible interviewer and her conversations with other thought leaders are fascinating and life-enhancing.  She’s not afraid to ask honest, uncomfortable questions about our culture and where we’re headed, and in person she is as warm and generous as I knew she would be. I was both challenged and inspired by the discussion, and very grateful for the opportunity - thank you @_sarahwilson_ ! 

This week I have lots of writing to do and some very meaty substack topics coming up, so I’ll be getting my head down - but probably after tomorrow, because I might just give myself the day off for my birthday! You’re only 48 once after all 😜🎂🎈
  • Every week I check in with one of Australia’s favourite authors to bring you their latest news, and this week I’m delighted to welcome my dear friend Natasha Lester!

So, Natasha, what are you… 

I’m about to start The Other Bridget by Rachael Johns.

Morning Wars. I’m obsessed with it!

The Books, Beach and Beyond podcast interview with Maggie O’Farrell as well as the audiobook of Shankari Chandran’s Miles Franklin award winning novel, Chai Time at Cinnamon Gardens

The edit for my next book.

See above!

ABOUT NATASHA: Natasha is the New York Times bestselling author of eight historical novels including The Disappearance of Astrid Bricard, The Three Lives of Alix St Pierre, The Paris Seamstress and The Paris Secret, and a former marketing executive for L’Oréal. Her novels have been translated into twenty-one different languages. When she’s not writing, she loves collecting vintage fashion, practising the art of fashion illustration, running and travelling. Natasha is a sought-after public speaker and lives with her husband and three children in Perth, Western Australia.

NATASHA’S LATEST BOOK:  Astrid Bricard, daughter of Christian Dior’s legendary muse, arrives in Manhattan determined to make her mark on the fashion world, but not as a muse like her mother. She does make her mark very quickly—but not in the way she’d hoped for. Then on the eve of the fashion battle at Versailles, just as Astrid seems to be about to get everything she ever wanted, she vanishes, leaving behind only a white silk dress and the question: what happened to Astrid Bricard?


Instagram: @natashalesterauthor 

Thanks for checking in, Natasha!

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