Married; children: two. Education: University of Queensland, B.A.; holds a graduate diploma in editing and publishing.
Home—Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.
Freelance writer and editor.
It's Not You, It's Me, Red Dress Ink (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 2004.
Hating Valentine's Day, Red Dress Ink (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 2005.
The Dairy Queen, Red Dress Ink (Don Mills, Ontario, Canada), 2006.
How to Date a Millionaire, Random House Australia (Milsons Point, New South Wales, Australia), 2006.
Diamonds Are a Teen's Best Friend, Random House Australia (Milsons Point, New South Wales, Australia), 2006.
The Seven Month Itch, Random House Australia (Milsons Point, New South Wales, Australia), 2006.
Writer Allison Rushby aspired to be a ballerina when she was a little girl, but eventually gave up her dream to study journalism at the University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia. At some point during her school career, she decided to study Russian, an interest that led her to acquire vast amounts of knowledge about the various brands of vodka. By the time she graduated, she had given up on being a formal journalist, but writing remained her primary interest. She worked a variety of freelance writing jobs, many of which revolved around weddings and ways in which one could plan a wedding on a small budget. The articles paid the bills, but did nothing for her career aspirations. Finally, both encouraged and threatened by her then-boyfriend, now-husband, Rushby decided to sit down and write a novel. The result was her first book, allmenare bastards.com, which was published in Australia in 2004, and then later released in the United States under the title Friday Night Cocktails.
Friday Night Cocktails was inspired in part by a bad relationship that Rushby had ended not long before she began to write. She found a way to get revenge on her ex on the Internet, quite by accident, and the idea of being able to soothe her wounded heart in such a way made her wonder how many other women had similar feelings in the wake of failed relationships. She continued her online research and the results provided the inspiration for the "bastard list" she included in her novel. In the story, best friends Gemma and Sarah post a list of their worst ex-boyfriends online one Friday night after a drunken binge has left them feeling vindictive toward the men who hurt them. The list takes off like wildfire, attracting the attention of scorned women everywhere, and soon morphs into a full-time occupation for Gemma. It falls to Chris, Gemma's production designer, to help her get over her broken heart and to realize that some men are worth the effort. Donna Carter, in a review on Romantic Times Online, noted that the book "avoids making Gemma too hate-filled and self-absorbed, instead allowing her flaws to make her a sympathetic character." A contributor for Kirkus Reviews noted that "crisp writing makes the most of a slight (and rather dated) premise."
In It's Not You, It's Me, Rushby tells the story of Jasper Ash, a musician and sometime-tutor, whose relationship with his artist/waitress roommate, Charlie, starts out strictly platonic, but in the wake of a one-night stand turns painful and awkward. Jasper tries to use the title cliché as a way to explain his inability to have a real relationship, but Charlie ends up broken-hearted anyway. Several years later, the pair cross paths again. Now successful and still feeling a connection, they decide to spend some time together in Europe in hopes of determining what really lies between them. Romantic Times Online contributor Samantha J. Gust declared that "both Charlie and Jas are appealing characters in this fun and endearing novel."
Hating Valentine's Day relates the relationship woes of Liv Hetherington, who has never recovered from her boyfriend brutally dumping her on Valentine's Day to go back to his wife. As a wedding photographer, however, Liv has a difficult time keeping out of the way of all things romantic, especially when the cherub-lined holiday has rolled around yet again. Even the prospect of a new man isn't enough to make her risk her heart again. And so Liv finds herself haunted by three Valentine's ghosts in a takeoff on the Dickensian Christmas classic, whose visits are designed to help her learn to trust again. Despite the predictability of the set up, Kristine Huntley, reviewing for Booklist, remarked that "Rushby does offer a funny, charming twist on a well-known tale."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, February 15, 2005, Kristine Huntley, review of Hating Valentine's Day, p. 1069; March 1, 2006, Kristine Huntley, review of The Dairy Queen, p. 76.
Kirkus Reviews, October 1, 2004, review of Friday Night Cocktails, p. 935.
Library Journal, January 1, 2005, Kristin Ramsdell, review of Hating Valentine's Day, p. 91.
MBR Bookwatch, February 1, 2005, Harriet Klausner, review of Hating Valentine's Day.
Allison Rushby Home Page,http://www.allisonrushby.com (May 28, 2008).
Chick Lit Books,http://chicklitbooks.com/ (May 28, 2008), author interview.
Fresh Fiction,http://freshfiction.com/ (May 28, 2008), review of It's Not You, It's Me.
Random House Australia Web site,http://www.randomhouse.com.au/ (May 28, 2008), author profile.
Romantic Times Online,http://romantictimes.com/ (May 28, 2008), Samantha J. Gust, review of It's Not You, It's Me; Donna Carter, review of Friday Night Cocktails; Cindy Harrison, review of Hating Valentine's Day; Donna M. Brown, review of The Dairy Queen.