Pages

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Kathleen O'Brien: Imaginary Places

Imaginary places have always felt incredibly real to me—as I know they do to a lot of readers.

So when I got the chance to be a part of the beautiful, rugged little imaginary town of Marietta, Montana, invented by the creative minds at Montana Born Books and Tule Publishing, I couldn’t resist

Writers from all over the globe have added to the population, real estate, geography and utter charm of Marietta, making it come alive so completely I can hardly believe I can’t rent a car and drive there!

My two novellas set in this town, THE SUBSTITUTE BRIDE and THE LONG WAY HOME, were so much fun to write, partly because, while I was writing, I was living there in my head.  I can hardly keep from wanting to go to the closest real Montana city, just so I can imagine myself in my beloved little town.



It wouldn’t be the first time I’ve booked a ticket because I fell in love with a region through books.

The most expensive pilgrimage I’ve ever made to a place that didn’t exist was my trip a few years back to Cornwall.

See, I fell in love with Manderley, the doomed and haunted mansion in Cornwell that is the centerpiece of Daphne Du Maurier’s REBECCA, when I was about eleven.


From that moment on, Cornwall seemed like the world’s most magical place to me.  All it took to make me buy a book was that word anywhere in the blurb.  Du Maurier is the queen of Cornwall literature, of course—with My Cousin Rachel, Frenchman’s Creek, The King’s General, Jamaica Inn, and many other novels.



During my Gothic novel phase, I was always drawn to the Cornwall settings…of course.  Victoria Holt was a treasure trove of brooding mansions overlooking stormy seas, inhabited by enigmatic masters.  Swoon!  I even love the look and sound of the Cornwall surnames…all those Pen-this and Mena-that.


A little later, I discovered the fabulous Ross Poldark, and the copper mines, and so much Cornwall history in the novels by Winston Graham.  Then I found the old BBC series…and fell in love all over again.

Rosamunde Pilcher’s THE SHELL SEEKERS—among many—fed my hunger for more Cornwall, later in life. 


And then nothing could satisfy me except to visit the place myself.

Luckily, His Highness is one of those guys who is part genie.  If you have a wish, he’s never going to rest until he finds a way to make it come true.  And so, one exciting day, we found ourselves flying to Cornwall.  He’s never read REBECCA in his life, but he went with me to Fowey, where Du Maurier wrote the novel, and spent hours and hours looking up every location for every scene he knew absolutely nothing about.

And you know what was really cool?  While we were there, he discovered an old manor house that belonged to the Treffry family—which was his grandmother’s maiden name.  So apparently, when I was picking the guy I wanted to live my life with, Fate drew me to a man with Cornwall roots!  (And, in self-defense, I did also trek with him to Wimbledon while we were in England.  That’s the place I suspect many of his dreams are set. :) )


So…my own hero standing beside me, in my dreamworld come to life—doesn’t get any better than that!  Now…about that Montana wish…. :)

How about you?  Have you ever visited a town or a country primarily because you had loved a book or movie set there?  Do imaginary places come to life in your heart? Leave a comment for a chance to win one of my books!


Friday, November 21, 2014

Jenny Gardiner: Checking in

hi!

A few housekeeping notes and then I'm going to link to a piece I just published that you might enjoy. It's serious, though, just so you know.

So anyhow, I just got the rights back to my parrot memoir, seen way below in it's original incarnation as Winging It: A Memoir of Caring for a Vengeful Parrot Who's Determined to Kill Me.

I've always wanted to offer this as an affordable ebook, since my publisher charged a crazy amount for it the whole time they had the rights. So I changed the title to Bite Me: A Parrot, A Family and a Whole Lot of Flesh Wounds, and the cover, and it's now a reasonable $2.99, so I hope you'll check it out if you've not before. Here's the new cover:


So hopefully in the next two weeks I'm also finally publishing the first in a new series--it's a flip on the old Roman Holiday movie, which I love. Here's a sneak preview of my cover:


He's a prince with a royal problem. She's a commoner with a getaway plan.

Oh, and I'm finally getting around to doing a newsletter! It'll be the first one in about 5 years! I'd sure love new subscribers, so if you'd like to check it out, please sign up here (and I promise I won't bug you all the time!).

And here's the link to my story, called Gramma in the Slamma. It's a cautionary tale:
http://wp.me/p4YI1f-2TT

Thanks and Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Accidentally on Purpose (written as Erin Delany)
Compromising Positions (written as Erin Delany)
find me on Facebook: fan page
find me on twitter here
find me on my website

Thursday, November 20, 2014

The Weather Outside is Frightful. . . .

Winter arrived here in southern NJ this week and the temps took a windy, frigid tumble. The windchimes outside my former office window have been clanging like a school bell this week, wobbling to and fro, for hours and hours. Luckily, my bedroom is on the other side of the house or I'd get no rest. . . ! 

And, as Thanksgiving approaches, there are some other cold weather traditions I enjoy....


Hot chocolate!  The cold seems to awaken my need for hot chocolate. I associate it with snow and shoveling snow and kids playing in the snow and the first flurries send me running to check on my supplies -- either packaged or the fresh ingredients. 



Chai tea!  I drink tea all the time, and it's mostly always plain black tea, no flavorings, with fat-free milk and sweetener in it. But, when Autumn and Winter arrive, I need chai tea, with its rich flavors of cardamom, ginger, cinnamon and even some pepper. I like to sip it, hot, and inhale the wonderful aroma of it.


Coffee! I know, I know, I don't drink coffee. I love the scent of it and the taste but coffee does not like me... So, I wait for a family gathering -- usually Thanksgiving, but this time a baby shower -- and I allow myself one cup, mixed with lots of milk and real sugar. I sip it and savor it, making appreciative noises (that drew my hubby's attention and curiosity) and know that I will pay the price to enjoy it. And I did, all through the night AND the next day -- but it was sooooo worth it. 

And finally, the ultimate sign that winter is approaching in my area? The arrival (and too-quick departure) of the WaWa turkey bowl! 


What, you ask, is a WaWa turkey bowl? Well, WaWa is a middle-Atlantic and Florida regional convenience store that makes incredible food, sandwiches, coffees and specialty drinks and . . . turkey bowls. They only arrive for a limited time -- and are a teasing hint of your homemade Thanksgiving dinner. Hot turkey in gravy served over mashed potatoes or stuffing or some of both. A dash of cranberry sauce can be added by why mess up the perfection of turkey, gravy and potatoes/stuffing? 

This year, an inside source told me of a pending end to the turkey bowl supply! They won't even last until Thanksgiving and connoisseurs of the dish are already mourning its loss. . . until next year....when it will come back when the cold weather returns. 

So, how about you? Do you have certain favorite foods or beverages you turn to when the weather turns bad? Please post and let me know....with turkey bowls disappearing, I'm going to be needing a new one very soon...! 



While awaiting the release of RISING FIRE in March 2015, Terri is working on the second in her new fantasy series - Novels of the Stone Circles - RAGING SEA. She's also going to have her next Harlequin Historical - the first in the new A HIGHLAND FEUDING series - coming out in April 2015! Please visit her website for more info about her books and upcoming events...! 


Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Janette Kenny: Rule of Three


The number three holds significance for me.  I was born in the third month of the year.  I was the first child out of three pregnancies that survived.  And my family nucleus consisted of Dad, Mom and me.   


Three is my lucky number.  My name and date of birth are divisible by three.  The third western historical romance that I wrote was my first published novel and first contest winner.  I hit the USA Today Bestseller list with my third Harlequin Presents.  My first series consisted of three historical romances.

Three has been good to me, but this year I experienced too many death trios that touched my heart.   They greatly exceeded the normal limit and severely affected my muse.  But the repeating circle of doom also stalled me long enough to stop me short of making a career move that didn’t excite me.


At present, I have three novels in various stages of editing with plans to launch my first suspense novel the first of the year.  Now the first of another series — would you believe this book is the third contemporary novel I wrote? — will be published instead.  And I’m thrilled!

Good luck overriding a streak of bad?  Time will tell, but I sincerely hope I don’t step foot in a funeral home for a good long time.

What about you?  Have you had good, bad or just strange things occur around the number three?  What’s your lucky number and has it ever failed you? One lucky commenter will receive an autographed novel from any in my backlist.  

Visit my website for a list of my works, and a sign up form to receive my occasional newsletter.

Until next time — live, laugh & love!

Janette Kenny


Janette Kenny is a USA Today Bestselling author of historical and contemporary romances.  She’s a country girl at heart.  A dream spinner with a passion for shoes, chocolate and alpha male heroes.  Visit her website and social pages to see what she’s up to next.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Margaret Marr: The Holidays Are Upon Us!


I love the holidays. This wasn't always the case. Once upon a time (after the magic of childhood) Christmas became my least favorite holiday. I was a regular grinch. A real scrooge. Sure I would smile the smile and attend all the required holiday events but Christmas was not my fave. Why? Too much pressure!  For an introvert like me, those holiday parties, while fun, were draining. I'm not shy by any stretch, but I recharge my battery with a good book, a cup of hot coffee, and my jammies. Alone in bed with one of my favorite authors to keep me company is truly my perfect night. The continuous parties of the season, while enjoyable, begin to wear me out.  

Plus Christmas came with so many expectations. Expectations that included guessing what gifts family and friends wanted, getting the gift, and then praying that I'd actually gotten the right gift. Plus -- I always seem to forget to have gifts on hand during the holiday season. You know the extra box of chocolate, bottle of wine, christmas tree ornament, or toy that you keep around the house when a friend or acquaintance drops by. 

I was unprepared, unhappy, and unable to grasp the true meaning of the season. For me Christmas simply meant hassles, headaches, and lots and lots of pressure. 

Then I had kids. Once again I got to witness the joy and wonder of the season through a child's eyes. We bake. We listen to Christmas carols. We shop together. We decorate. They go with their father and bring me a tree! Suddenly the pressure was off. Christmas was no longer about me and my inadequacies or failed gift-giving ability but Christmas was now about them--the kids. Seeing the magic in their eyes brought the joy of the season back to me. I can't ever thank my children enough for the gift that they gave me. The gift of enjoying Christmas, once again. 

To celebrate Christmas this year I wrote my first Christmas book. A Christmas Billionaire, book 3 in the Eligible Billionaires Series (11/20). I enjoyed writing this book, because Nick and Noel are meant to be together they just don't know that at the beginning of the book. Also, because, I LOVE CHRISTMAS (thanks to my family) and writing the book was a joy.  


Leave a comment about one of your favorite holidays and I'll have random.org select a winner and send you a copy of A Christmas Billionaire!



Maggie Marr is an author and attorney. She writes The Hollywood Girls Club Series, The Glamour Series, The Eligible Billionaires Series, and The Powder Springs Series. Maggie loves all things pop culture. She is a big fan of Santa, mistletoe, Christmas trees, and elves. She lives and works in Los Angeles. 

Monday, November 17, 2014

Jeannie Moon: The Most Wonderful Time of the Year


I love Christmas.  I always have.  Everything about it from the lights, the decorations and the carols make me happy.  I love shopping for gifts.  I don’t care about receiving gifts, but I love finding the perfect gift for a person, maybe even the thing they didn’t know they wanted or needed.

So when I wrote my new novella, This Christmas, I thought about all the things that make the holiday season magic and I did my best to sprinkle it throughout the book.

My best vehicle for Christmas spirit wasn’t my hero and heroine, however, it was their daughter, Charlotte. Charlie, as she was known to everyone, didn’t know her dad, and every Christmas she wished for him to be in her life.  Through a twist of fate, Jake flies right back into Charlie’s, and Sabrina’s, orbit, discovers he’s a father and then the Christmas magic takes over for father and daughter, as well as for the estranged lovers.

Weaving the magic throughout the story, I drew on some things I hold dear at the holidays, like baking special treats, and decorating the house.  These traditions, which are filled with love, family, and friends are the reasons I read Christmas romances, and I assume the reason most readers pick up this kind of book.


Christmas was the perfect time of year for Charlie to meet her father and for Sabrina and Jake to rekindle the love they had so many years before.  The warm feeling wrapped around these kinds of stories is what enchants readers.

This Christmas is part of a four book series called Christmas in New York, and it follows four lifelong friends, Sabrina, Cass, Jade and Elena, through this wondrous season of light until each woman finds her happily ever after.

Please comment below and tell me your favorite Christmas romance.  One commenter will receive a digital copy of any book from my backlist. 

Stay in touch with me on my website: http://jeanniemoon.com
Find me on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/jeanniemoon

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Carole Mortimer's ALPHA Series

The strangest thing happened to me in the middle of September this year—I woke up in the middle of the night with a whole series of books and their storylines buzzing about in my head. I had even designed the covers for the first four books in the series while I was asleep, too.

It was incredible. I’ve been writing for Harlequin Presents for 36 years, and also the Harlequin Historical line for the past 5 years too. Nothing like this had ever happened to me before.

The books I dreamt about that night have become the ALPHA ebook series, and the first novella in the series, Christmas Alpha, was published on November 8th, and is currently available for download on Amazon, B&N, iTunes, Kobo, and Smashwords. The second full-length ebook, Dark Alpha, is also available for pre-order on the same retail sites, with a publication date of January 18th 2015. The third and fourth books will be published in March and May of 2015. And there are more books to come!

The stories in the ALPHA series have sexier situations and language, than my other books, and after thinking about the storylines, and wanting to get the ebooks out to my readers as soon as possible, I made the decision to self-publish the series.

Which is when the adventure really began!

Never let anyone tell you that Indie publishing is easy, because it’s not—but what it is a barrel load of fun! It’s also hard work and dedication, and I have a whole lot of respect and admiration for all you Indie authors out there who have been doing this for several years.


I’ve always written fast, and having written the novella to launch the series in just three weeks, I needed to also have my ‘team’ if I was going to become a publisher myself.
My son Josh is my wing-man—he is truly amazing, and has worked so hard to help me launch this series, with ads and blogs, designing a newsletter, and he always, always has my back.

My editor was recommended to me by a close friend—and it has truly been a wonderful partnership. I can’t thank Megan Stevens enough to putting up with my English idiosyncrasies, and helping to make these stories better than I had even dreamt they would be.

I had a bit more of a problem finding a formatter who could do the work in time for a November 8th publishing date, but luckily Julie Cupp, a Formatting fairy, proved invaluable. My son Matt is currently learning to format—so we are truly becoming a family ‘business’.

Having dreamt the covers, and then had those covers designed by my website lady, Jo, we then talked it over and decided to revamp my website page, to reflect this new ALPHA series as well as my Harlequin books. The result is stunning, thanks to Jo.

Along with writing the books, and finding the editor, formatter, cover designer, there is also the little matter of Copyright, and ISBN numbers to buy and register.

Are you having fun yet?

Because I was, and I still am. 

Indie publishing is not for everyone, I understand and respect that, but for those of you who want to publish yourself I can’t tell you how wonderful this whole process has been for me. I love everything about it, from writing the stories, editing, designing the covers, to choosing the publishing date. Christmas Alpha was written in September, and just 5 short weeks later it’s now published.

Now that’s have fun!

Carole Mortimer.


A link for signing up for my monthly newsletter, for news on Carole Mortimer and current and future publishing dates and titles of books, can be found on my website and also on my Facebook page.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Tinnitus, caffeine and me by Michelle Styles

My ears ring. In other words I have tinnitus.  The ringing started about four years ago or so and I was certain I was suffering from hearing loss.
 My younger sister has a hearing aid because of her cookie bite hearing loss. She has trouble with the sound in the middle register. It is apparently genetic.  My family, in particular my husband, complained that I wasn’t always hearing them. This could be because I was in another room and working...
I had my hearing checked. Yes there was some loss but nothing to require action. Fast forward two years (more complaints and the ringing increasing), and I had it checked again. Again not enough hearing loss to warrant a hearing aid. In fact, a hearing aid would make things worse.
However this time when I explained about the ringing in my ears, the audiologist suggested I try giving up caffeine. I was desperate enough to try.
Now I will freely admit that I drink too much tea and coffee. And then there is chocolate. Okay I was addicted. The headache the first few days was incredible and nothing would touch it, but the ringing in my ears was significantly diminished. Within a few days, it vanished completely from my left ear. I also noticed that I was able to concentrate much more and was much more productive. My hearing also improved.  While some ringing in my right ear remains, it is much less and on occasion, it does go.
It is somewhat of a sigh as I do like the taste of coffee and tea. But the taste of coffee is nothing to the silence. It is fantastic not to have a high pitched whine all the time. So I shall remain caffeine free for the time being.
Tinnitus can have many causes. So if you do experience prolonged ringing in the ears, it is best to see a health professional. Caffeine, alcohol, excessive salt and strong cheese can cause it as well as excessive noise, too many painkillers and a host of other things. It is a nuisance but it doesn’t mean you are necessarily suffering from terrible hearing loss. And things can be done. Sometimes it is as simple as going caffeine free.
In general people as they get older should get their hearing test once a year, just like you would do with your eyes. Hearing aids are constantly improving and many people who have attended loud concerts in their youth will suffer from some sort of noise related hearing loss. Equally there are things you can do if you suspect your hearing isn't  as good as it once was. Insisting that you are in the same room as someone when they speak to you is a start!
In other news:

Michelle Styles with pixie cut
The cover for my latest Viking --Taming His Viking Woman arrived in my inbox last month. I am terribly excited about the book as it is my Shield Maiden book. The cover gods decided to give me a female model with short hair again and I realised that I must be channelling heroines with pixie cuts. Unfortunately, my hair looks best in a pixie cut. I have known this since I was about three. I would love to be someone who looked best in shoulder length hair but I’m not. So I have given into fate and am now back in a pixie cut.
Sometimes, you just have to go with what the universe is whispering…


Michelle Styles writes warm, witty, and intimate historical romance in a wide range of time periods. Her next novel, Taming His Viking Woman will be published on 20 January 2014. You can learn more about Michelle and her books on www.michellestyles.co.uk

Friday, November 14, 2014

Christina Hollis: Creative Writing To Order—NaNoWriMo 2014

I love writing romance (you can find some of my titles here) but I also enjoy reading Ian Rankin's crime fiction and the Montalbano stories by Andrea Camilleri. For quite a while, I've had a couple of characters in mind whose backgrounds are a bit too close to my own to make them a good fit for a romance.

I've never had time to give these characters the space they need to develop. Then along came a Romantic Novelists' Association Workshop, organised by Ann Ankers of the Marcher Chapter. There was a call for samples of work-in-progress, but as I'd just turned in a book and hadn't  started writing my next romance, I didn't have anything to hand. With the requirement of only a few pages, this workshop felt like the ideal place to try out something new, so I produced the first few pages of a—what? Crime, or thriller? The sample was so short I wasn't sure how the story would develop, but everyone at the workshop loved the sample opening. That made the project worth pursuing. There's nothing like the response of readers to improve a writer's work, so I was happy to take their suggestions for improvement on board, and start thinking about a plot to ensnare my two unusual suspects.

My Next Release, from Wild Rose Press
I like to work within a framework of targets and deadlines, and it just so happened NaNoWriMo 2014 was about to kick off. I signed up. It gave me the chance—or is it the excuse? ;) —to put everything else aside, and concentrate on producing a rough first draft of this new work in progress over the thirty days of November.

We're just about half-way through November now, and I'm currently forty-seven percent of the way toward the fifty-thousand word target set down by the NaNoWriMo organisers. It's been hard work, but definitely worthwhile. Plotting my word-count progress in public on the site is pretty scary, but it also acts as a great spur. The sense of achievement is amazing!

The best thing of all is, whether or not I qualify at the end as a NaNoWriMo winner, I'll have the basic structure of my story in place. I can build on that. It's so much easier to edit, rework and rewrite text than it is to start from cold, with the equivalent of a blank sheet of paper.

Writing is all about turning castles in the air into a real story world. Have you ever taken part in NaNoWriMo? How did you get on? You can follow the progress of my current writing project by hitting the "Like" button on my new Facebook Author page, here.

Christina Hollis writes both contemporary and historical fiction–when she isn't cooking, gardening or beekeeping. Her books have been translated into over a dozen different languages, and she’s sold nearly three million books worldwide. You can catch up with her at http://www.christinahollis.blogspot.com,on Twitter and Facebook, and see a full list of her published books at http://www.christinahollis.com Her next release, His Majesty's Secret Passion, will be released in early 2015

Thursday, November 13, 2014


 It's snowing this morning…it really sets the stage for my newest release, Christmas in Cupid Falls!  Cupid Falls, PA is a fictional small town between two very really towns here in Northwestern PA, Union City and Waterford.  I love showcasing my region of the US.  I live in Erie proper.  Our city sits on the shore of the Great Lake that shares our name.  

Most of my books have been set in and around Erie.  I'm so excited to start a new series in a new town here.  As I wrote, I fell in love with Cupid Falls.  It's a small town with a big heart.  And I brought a readers' favorite in for a cameo…Nana Vancy from the Everything But… series.  In the final book of the series, Everything But a Dog, she adopts two dogs…dogs who were modeled after my dogs, Ethel and Ella.  They used my dogs as models for the cover of the book.  Yes, my dogs are cover models.  They've developed a rather overinflated view of their fame.  They keep waiting for the PUParazzi to start hounding them!  LOL

So here's a sneak peak at Nana Vancy's cameo in Christmas in Cupid Falls:

They reached the coatrack and all three of them pulled out their coats.
Nana Vancy smiled at him as she slipped hers on. She looked as pleased as if he’d aced a spelling bee. “Yes, my friends. I adopted Clara Barton and Madame Curie to help match Annabelle’s second cousin’s daughter by her third marriage once removed. Bela was so mad when I came home with the dogs, but they stole his heart. There have never been two dogs so loved. And when I decided that matchmaking people might not be my calling . . .”
Kennedy’s laughter couldn’t be contained at that. “From what you told me, there were a few glitches.”
Nana Vancy grinned as she nodded and admitted, “Just a few, kedvenc, but I did help bring together some very happy couples. But when I matchmaked Annabelle’s second cousin’s daughter by her third marriage once removed, who was a veterinarian—”
Kennedy laughed as she interrupted, “—with a man who was allergic to dogs.”
Nana Vancy said, “It all worked out, didn’t it? And I discovered my true calling was matching dogs to their forever homes. And with help from family and friends, I started Everything But a Dog Foundation.”
That was a long story made longer, Mal thought but didn’t say out loud as they walked out onto the sidewalk. He glanced to make sure that Kennedy had zipped up her parka against the cold.
She caught him at it and glared at him. He didn’t need the words to know she was telling him she could look after herself.
He sighed. This time it wasn’t only Kennedy who looked at him, but Nana Vancy, too. She pointed down the street at a big man with two dogs. A large black one and a much smaller white one that had a very sausage-like build.
Mal looked at the big man smile as the tiny woman approached him. He wasn’t a romantic by any stretch of the imagination, but when Nana Vancy’s Bela joined them with the dogs, Mal could see how much love there was between them. It reminded him of Clarence and Joan. Or his grandfather and grandmother.
Nana Vancy walked up to the big man and their bodies brushed, as if drawn together like magnets.
“Kennedy, Malcolm, this is my Bela.” There was pride in her voice . . . and love.
“Bela Salo,” he said, shaking their hands.
“And this is Madame Curie.” At the sound of her name, the black dog sat down and offered them her paw.
Kennedy knelt down awkwardly and took the paw. “Aren’t you a beautiful girl?”
The little white dog, not to be outdone, jumped up at Kennedy, anxious for some affection, too. But Kennedy’s center of gravity was extremely off because of the baby. The small dog hurtling in her direction was enough to topple her, but Malcolm sprang forward and grabbed her under her arms, steadying her.
She looked up. “Thank you,” she said, then turned her attention to the demanding sausage-like white dog.
Nana Vancy shot him a look that made him feel like a bug under a microscope, then she said, “And that rude dog is Clara . . . Clara Barton. She has no manners and very little brains.”
Bela looked slightly insulted on the dog’s behalf. “But she is all heart, that one.”
As if to prove his point, Clara was busy kissing Kennedy, who hadn’t asked Mal to remove his hands, so he continued to steady her as she continued to kneel by the small dog.

I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday!!  And that it's filled with love, family and a whole lot of fun!

Holly

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Looking back - Kate Walker gets nostalgic


Today I made a trip into town where – amongst other things  - I made a visit to our local library.   I don ‘t visit there very often these days, but today I had a special reason for going.
(I’ll come to that later).

It’s always rather strange walking through the main door of the library. You see, years ago, I used to work there. I was the children’s librarian, first of all for the small branches in the local villages and then after a  couple of years I was in charge of the main central library in the town. I loved that job – I got to  select and buy  lots of wonderful books and get them on the shelves,  meet   with children of all ages and help them find books they would enjoy. I used to love  running the library clubs and special book quizzes – and it was always  such a pleasure to know that I was helping children with their reading and encouraging them to read more.

Since I left, the library has changed a lot. The children’s library has been moved  several times, once  going from the ground floor  to the second floor, and  becoming smaller  after cutbacks. But now it’s back where it was when I ran it, on the ground floor, with lots of shelves filled with wonderful books – even a couple of comfortable easy chairs and settees – those weren’t there when I ran the place (unfortunately!)

So I had a nostalgic moment thinking about the job I used to have and how the library was the place I came to every day of the week. Then I remembered why I was in the library at all, and that reminded me of just how my life has changed and how very different my job is now.

I was in the library to donate some of my books – the library takes many of my international editions, so I was there with a box full of Japanese, French,  Italian, Brazilian,  Dutch and Czech editions, together with some large print editions that the library can really use.  This reminded me of how, 30 years ago this month, I was waiting for another parcel of books – the very first parcel of many – the very first set of my author’s copies of my first book. That book, The Chalk Line, was first published in the UK, in hardback only, in December 1984.

30 years ago! It doesn’t seem possible – and yet there are all those foreign editions to prove how different things are now from then. The Chalk Line  didn’t appear in foreign editions for some time. The German edition  was the very first translation I ever saw. And now I have 63 titles published, and I’m hard at work on my 64th.  So many of the children I helped to find the books to enjoy have gro
wn up in that time, they have their own children – I sometimes see them with their kids in the Children’s library now,.

So next month I’ll be celebrating the 30th anniversary of my very first book being published. It’s been a complete change in the way I thought my life would go, I have a totally different  job to work at, shelves of published editions of my books – and so many friends all over the world,. Both writers and readers, to show as a result.   It’s all been so much more exciting and rewarding than I could ever imagined.

So what about you? Where were you and what were you doing  30 years ago ? Were you even
alive then – eek! That’s a question that scares me!

Has your life changed as much in the past 30 years? Did you expect to be where you are today, back then?

I know I didn’t.

You can look for Kate's 12 Point Guide To Writing Romance which is now selling busily on Kindle.

In fiction, she has the reprint of Kept for Her Baby out in the current By Request 3 in 1. Coming soon is a reprint of The Konstantos Marriage Demand  in His Revenge Seduction another 3 in 1.

You can find all her news on her website, and  all the must up to date events on her blog.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Introducing Her Christmas Earl!

by Anna Campbell

It's that time of year again!

The time of year when we writers go all misty-eyed and sentimental and jolly and start penning Christmas romances.

This is the third year in a row that I've done a Christmas novella. My first was THE WINTER WIFE which was a reunion story set on the snowy Yorkshire Moors. My second was "His Christmas Cinderella" which was an ultra-romantic addition to the free anthology A GROSVENOR SQUARE CHRISTMAS.

This year I'm writing a marriage of convenience story featuring a rake ripe for redemption and the straight-talking unfashionable woman he finds himself married to as a result of bad luck and scandal (except as in all good romances, the bad luck is actually very good luck in disguise).

Here's the blurb for HER CHRISTMAS EARL: A REGENCY NOVELLA:

No good deed goes unpunished…

To save her hen-witted sister from scandal, Philippa Sanders ventures into a rake's bedroom - and into his power. Now her reputation hangs by a thread and only a hurried marriage can rescue her. Is the Earl of Erskine the heartless libertine the world believes? Or will Philippa discover unexpected honor in a man notorious for his wild ways?



Blair Hume, the dissolute Earl of Erskine, has had his eye on the intriguing Miss Sanders since he arrived at this deadly dull house party. Now a reckless act delivers this beguiling woman into his hands as a delightful Christmas gift. Does fate offer him a fleeting Yuletide diversion? Or will this Christmas Eve encounter spark a passion to last a lifetime? 

You can read an excerpt of HER CHRISTMAS EARL on my website here: http://annacampbell.info/xmasearl.html

And all at only 99 cents! 

You can buy HER CHRISTMAS EARL from:

Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Her-Christmas-Earl-Regency-Novella-ebook/dp/B00OQY2X06/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1413942208&sr=1-1&keywords=her+christmas+earl

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/486725

There's something lovely about writing a Christmas romance. It's a time of hope and family and love and generosity, and all of those qualities feed into a feel-good love story. I really enjoyed meeting clever, direct Philippa Sanders and her dashing, handsome, disreputable Christmas Earl, Blair Hume. I hope you feel the same! 

So are you a fan of romances set around Christmas time? Any favorites?