Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Interview on Youtube!

If you haven't already seen all my posts on Facebook, here is the link to the interview I filmed down in London at Mills and Boon Headquarters.

Scarlet Wilson Interview

Friday, 22 June 2012

Beginnings, Middles or Endings??

What's your favourite part of writing a book?  Is it the beginning - where everything is new and fresh and there is a whole world of opportunities?  Is it the middle where things are tying together, you have two fully-fledged characters that feel real?  Or is it the end - the happy ever after - the bit everyone is waiting for?
Or maybe you're a little bit bad.  And your favourite part is the big Black Moment.  That horrible bit of the book where it seems as if there is no return??

I'm in a happy place.  Last night I started a new book.  And you might have guessed it but my favourite part of the book is the beginning.  I love the ideas, the potential developments, the little sentences you drop in that let the reader know there is something in this characters back story that will stop his or her path to a straightforward happy ever after.

I also love the drama.  Starting in the middle of something.  And not always with the two main characters on the page.  My first book It Started with a Pregnancy, began with my hero and heroine meeting in a bar and a night of passion followed.  Not the most unusual start.  But I learned from this.  And I developed.

My second story had drama.  The Boy who Made Them Love Again started with my hero pulling up outside a small hospital with the First Lady in premature labour in the back of the car!  He comes face to face with the woman he walked away from five years earlier and so the drama continues.

My third book was a follow up - still using the President and First Lady.  In this one my heroine turns up at the police cordon, heavily pregnant and trying to reach the doctor that's looking after the President's premature daughter.  She promptly collapses and is taken inside to meet her ex - the hero - and the only man she can trust to rescue her much-wanted child.  Sigh.  I love a bit of drama.

Book four, A Bond Between Strangers, starts with my hero receiving a letter telling him there has been an IVF mix up.  The embryos that had been created for him and his wife (with his sperm and a donors egg) and were due to be destroyed, have been mistakenly implanted in someone else.  His wife is long gone - but this is his baby - and all he's ever wanted is a family.  Someone else is carrying his child.  And he wants it.

Book five is the christmas story.  Her Christmas Eve Diamond starts with my heroine going to get her fortune told with her friends.  She doesn't believe in all that and is less than impressed when the fortune teller predicts she will be a Christmas bride.  It's August and she doesn't even have a boyfriend.  What's more she's vowed her next man will be a fellow Scot, but the fortune teller has other things in mind.....

Book six is the cruise ship story.  An Inescapable Temptation.  This one starts with the hero jumping in to rescue a child in Venice harbour.  He gets knocked out and my heroine ends up resuscitating him!

As for Book Seven????  Well, I'm not going to give too much away.  But again there is drama.  My study currently has a very important algorithm for a certain disease pinned on my wall.  Something big is going to happen in Chicago - something very big!

So, you can see a pattern forming here.  It's a bit worrying to be honest.  Apart from my first story, do I know how to write a story with a quiet build up?  I try not to do the backstory dump thing, and I do always try to start in the middle of the action.

What's interesting is that the middle of the action doesn't always have the hero and heroine on the first page.  It was one of the things I noticed about the New Voices contest.  I wanted to see the hero and heroine together straight away and yet I don't always do it myself.  Granted, it happens within a couple of pages, but maybe I still have a few things to learn.

So what's your favourite part?  Are you all about the middle and the developing characters?  Are you a wrung-out sort of person and all about the Black Moment?  Or, are you hearts and roses and all about the Happy Ever After?  Or are you like me, all about drama and all about beginnings?

Thursday, 14 June 2012

The Lucky Seven - Tagged!

Rachael Johns is in SO much trouble.

She's tagged me in "The Lucky Seven" challenge.  I've been kind of keeping my head down and avoiding this one but it's not to be!

The Golden Rules:

  • Go to page 7 or 77 in your current manuscript (fiction or non-fiction)
  • Go to line 7
  • Post on your blog the next seven lines, or sentences as they are - no cheating.
  • Tag 7 authors to do the same

So what am I currently writing?  That would be that cruise ship book.
Cue a nice picture of my other half and the kids next to our cruise ship two years ago (a purely research trip you understand!)

And I've just got a nice title for the cruise ship book.  It's going to be called An Inescapable Temptation.  What do you think?

So here we go Page 77, line 7 and the next 7 lines.

Gabriel was waiting in the Atlantis Bar.  His brain was not entirely sure what he was doing there.  Being one of the ship’s doctors had additional roles and responsibilities and he understood that.  He’d invited Francesca merely as a means of self protection.  And if he kept telling himself that he might actually grow to believe it.  He eyed his watch nervously – what if she changed her mind and didn’t come?    The cougars were already circulating.

And because lots of you have already been tagged I won't pick another seven, I'll just say if you've not already done it - now it's your turn!  So come back and tell me if you've done it!

Friday, 8 June 2012

Dear Julia Launch Wave - Stop Four

It’s launch day for Rae Summers’ new historical novella, Dear Julia, and to celebrate she’s having a Launch Wave of excerpts! You can keep up with the wave’s progress on the Twitter hashtag #DearJulia. If you enjoy the story, feel free to tweet your comments and chat to other wave surfers.
By clicking on the links below each excerpt, you’ll be able to follow the wave across 8 blogs to read the entire first chapter - or you can click on the buy links below to get your own copy!
* * *
Dear Julia is set in the English countryside in the early 1920s, and is part of the Love Letters series from The Wild Rose Press.
“She married an American during the war, I believe, and moved there with him. I’m not certain anyone around here would know where she is now, or even what her married name might be.” A thoughtful look crossed the vicar’s face, and Rosalie watched with interest as he debated with himself before casting aside whatever idea had occurred to him. “She was the last of her family, you know.”
“Mrs. Wallace said I look a lot like her.” She didn’t know why she said it, but she was glad she did. A startled expression sparked in the depths of his eyes, and he peered at her through his owlish glasses. “Yes, I suppose you do. She’d have been a little older than you, of course, but there’s an interesting resemblance.” He sighed.“There are some things, Miss Stanton, that belong in the past. Julia Fortescue is one of them. He...”
Rosalie’s skin prickled. When Mrs. Wallace had said “he” she’d thought the older woman meant the vicar. But perhaps there was someone else in the village, someone who had been intimately tied to the Fortescues? Someone neither Mrs. Wallace nor the vicar wanted to involve. Rosalie’s curiosity spiked.
The vicar pulled himself together. “I suggest you throw those items away, Miss Stanton. If Julia did not value them enough to take them with her when she left, then she wouldn’t care for them now.”
She wanted to tell him that Julia probably never knew of the letter’s existence, but she bit her tongue.
There was a finality in the vicar’s words that she wasn’t about to argue with. Not when she had a new idea growing.
“Thank you, Mr. Hemmings.” She rose from the seat. “I will see you in church on Sunday.”
“Feel free to visit any time, Miss Stanton.”
She returned home through the woods, walking slowly and thinking deeply. How could she find out who this mystery man was, without starting the village gossiping?
* * *
For the next instalment, click here to go to the blog of Harlequin Super Romance debut author Olivia Miles.
Here is the full list of participating blogs:
Stop 1 – Minxes of Romance
Stop 2 – Sally Clements
Stop 3 – Rachel Bailey
Stop 4 – you are here!
Stop 5 – Olivia Miles
Stop 6 – Jennifer Shirk
Stop 7 – Suzanne Jones
Stop 8 – Romy Sommer
Dear Julia is on sale through Amazon, Amazon UK, Barnes & Noble, AllRomance eBooks, and The Wild Rose Press. You can find out more about this novella here - and don’t forget to tweet your feedback using the hashtag #DearJulia.

Friday, 1 June 2012

Twitter-style Interview with Rachael Johns

 Today I am welcoming one my critique partners Rachael Johns for a twitter style interview.  That means that question and answer combined can be no more than 140 characters!  If you think it's easy, give it a try!
Rachael is celebrating the release of her new novel Jilted.  Read all about it down below.

About your book…….

1.       Describe what you write? Romantic Fiction – from Red Dust to Big Smoke!
2.       Five words to sum up your heroine? Hard-working, loyal, romantic, independent and fun!
3.       And your hero? Gorgeous, grumpy, misguided, besotted and protective!
4.       Your setting? – Small, close-knit rural community in rural Western Australia
5.       Where can we buy it? Online at Harlequin Australia or bookshops in Australia & New Zealand.

About your writing……..

6.       How long have you been writing? Too long! LOL. Seriously, I started at 17, so near on fifteen years.
7.       Do you have an agent? No, but I’m thinking of trying to get one for selling O/S. Any takers?
8.       How much time do you spend online? I’m rarely away from the net for more than ½ hr at a time. #addicted
9.       How much time do you write each day? I aim for a couple of hours.
10.   Plans for promotion?? Blog visits, signings in WA bookshops, library visits, talking to whoever will listen

Pick either and why…

11.   Beach or Lake? – Beach, but rarely. We live too far away.
12.   Sun or Snow? – Snow, I think. We don’t see snow much but I’m not a sun seeker.
13.   Cinderella or Rapunzel? – Can I say both? I love fairytales!
14.   Dogs or cats? – Definitely cats. They are smart, clean and have attitude!
15.   Chicken or steak? Always steak. I’m one of those strange people who can’t really stand chicken unless it’s very dry.

Nosey and personal questions…

16.   Any dating disasters? I told my hubby the wrong name of a restaurant on our 1st date. It was a food hall outlet and he tried to book us a table at a food hall!
17.   Kiss on the first date? Only on the cheek or hand! *smiles coyly*
18.   Hair dye? Used to, but am going au naturele in my old age J
19.   Biggest vice? Drinking Diet Coke!
20.   Best read of 2012 so far? The Next Always – Nora Roberts (despite the fact there was hardly a grain of conflict)!

Thanks Rach for the interview!  

She left him at the altar, but her heart was always his...
After more than ten years away, Australian soap star Ellie Hughes returns to the small country town of Hope Junction, determined to remain anonymous while caring for her injured godmother, Matilda.
But word spreads fast in the tight-knit community. It isn’t long before the people of Hope’s are gossiping about the real reason for Ellie’s visit and why she broke the heart of golden boy Flynn Quartermaine all those years ago.
Soon Ellie and Flynn are thrown back together again, forced to deal with the unresolved emotions between them. For Ellie is not the only one with secrets. Flynn has his own demons to battle, and Matilda is hiding something from her much-loved goddaughter.
When all is uncovered, can the ill-fated lovers overcome the wounds of their past? Or is Flynn destined to be jilted again?
Jilted is available to buy from Harlequin Australia,