Just when I thought the paperback version of Closing In was a bit of a daydream, it landed on my doormat this week. Hopefully, the glitch with Amazon will be fixed soon, my publishers are ‘on the case’, so for those who have been asking about the paperback, you should soon be able to order it.
Meanwhile, back in the ebook world, I’m delighted that the digital version is doing well and thank everyone for their support.
As always, the annual Romantic Novelists’ Association conference is always a blast. This year was no exception. Held at the Harper Adams University in Telford, the talks were great, very inspiring and the company fantastic.
For me, it started the Thursday night after an epic drive to meet my Romaniac girls at Debbie Fuller-White’s house which is approximately 40 minutes from the campus. I eventually arrived at Debbie’s around 11.30pm and the girls, who had held off eating until I got there, had quelled their hunger pains with wine – say no more!
The following morning, we started the day with a lovely walk near to where Debbie lives. I was instantly taken with the beautiful scenery and have made a note to come back with my walking boots to explore this part of the country more.
Conference started on Friday afternoon and continued through the weekend. The talks I attended were very interesting. I would like to have gone to many more but, sadly, with 3 or 4 going on at the same time, you have to pick and choose. The talk given by Waterstones and WH Smith Travel was very insightful. It was interesting to hear about their approaches, vision and restrictions. Talli Roland and Nick Spalding gave another great talk on being both a traditionally signed author and a self-published one. While Phillipa Ashley and Nell Dixon gave some excellent advice on writing series novels.
The gala dinner was fabulous. Catering for 250 RNA members, is not easy task, but they managed it with ease. The food, all sourced locally, was delicious.
I have to mention that Romaniac and friend, Vanessa Savage, came second in the Elizabeth Goudge opening chapter competition with her modern take on a fairy story – Vanessa used Sleeping Beauty as her inspiration for a YA version entitled ‘Hush’. I have actually read it and, although I am biased, it is a great opening chapter; dark and intriguing.
A big thank you to the RNA and everyone involved in making it such a success.
Officially known as Publication Day, unofficially known as ‘Happy Dance Day’ – of which I shall be doing a lot.
I am delighted that my second novel with HarperImpulse is released today in digital format, with paperback to follow shortly.
Thank you for all your support; as always, very much appreciated.
Helen has had to leave everything she’s ever known behind; her home, her family, even her own name.
Now, returning to the UK as Ellen Newman, she moves to a small coastal village, working as a nanny for Donovan, a criminal psychologist. Attractive, caring and protective, this single father and his sweet daughter are a world away from Ellen’s brutal past. She thinks she’s escaped. She thinks she’s safe.
But something’s wrong.
Strange incidents begin to plague her new family, and their house of calm is about to become one of suspicion and fear. Who can be trusted? Who is the target? Who is closing in?
I’m delighted to be able to announce that my second novel, Closing In, is to be published by HarperImpluse, and will be released on 15 May. Initially, in digital format but paperback to follow soon afterwards.
I’ve prepared a book trailer to show you the cover and give you an idea what Closing In is about. So, if you have less than a minute to spare, I’d love you to take a look.
Written with passion, emotion, humour and warmth, The Romaniacs present a fashionably brief selection of twenty-two short stories and flash fiction. A story to suit every mood, from the lightness of first love to the sometimes dark realities of life, it’s touching, eclectic, and definitely Romanical.
Thank you everyone for your support – it’s very much appreciated.
I have been invited by ChocLit author and Romaniac pal, Laura E James, to take part in a blog hop where we answer a few questions about our writing process. Laura posted last week; it’s fascinating to see how everyone works. You can go to her blog by clicking HERE.
In the meantime, here’s how I do it …
1. What am I working on?
I am currently working on my third full length novel called, Where It All Began. The premises or theme, if you like, of the story is what mothers do for the love of their child; it looks at the extremes of that love and the reasoning behind their actions, both good and bad. There is, of course, some romance and a bit of a mystery.
2. How does my writing differ from others in that genre?
Ooh, a tough question. First of all what genre am I writing in? Romance. Suspense. Mystery. Crime. Women’s fiction. Yes, to all of those, I suppose. When I was writing my second novel, Closing In, which is currently with my publisher, I was often asked the genre. My reply was that it’s a mixture of romance and crime, so I coined the term ‘crimance’. Where It All Began has those elements too, so I’m carrying on in the same genre of ‘crimance’. How does it differ? I can only say is that I write it my way, with my voice.
3. Why do I write what I do?
That’s a more easy question. I love reading thrillers, whether they are police procedural, suspense or mystery, I really enjoy that sort of story. Equally, I enjoy reading about relationships; all that love and stuff! Combining the two is what I get the most pleasure and satisfaction out of when I’m writing.
4. How does my writing process work?
My process has developed over time. These days I like to come up with a theme or a premise first. Once I’ve got that then I can start creating scenarios, mysteries, conflict. The characters seem to come along simultaneously. Sometimes, especially at the early planning stages, there is such a mish-mash of ideas going on in my head that I’m sure if you look at my thoughts, they would resemble an old fashioned jumble sale circa. 1975, about 10 minutes after the doors have opened, where everything is a complete mess, items tossed around, discarded, picked back up again, put in the wrong place and every now and then you find a gem of a buy for 10p. By the time the sale is over, you’ve come away with some great items and some not so great ones. In the safety of your own home you can sort through and decide what to keep and what to put back in for the next jumble sale. Well, that’s my writing process.
Next week, I’m passing the baton onto my fellow Harper Impulse author, Teresa Morgan who blogs as The Wittering Woman and this is what she says about herself.
I was born and bred in Surrey, but since 1998 I have lived in sunny Weston-super-Mare, North Somerset. I live with my two sons – trying very hard to hold onto my Surrey accent!
I am at my happiest baking cakes, putting proper home cooked dinners on the table (whether the kids eat them or not), reading a good romance, or sitting at my PC emptying the thoughts from my head onto the screen.
I love writing contemporary romance, creating heroes readers will fall in love with. Men who in reality, let’s face it, just don’t exist. I love creating stories with a touch of escapism.
I was thinking of all the lovely things you could do with chocolate and when I did some reasearch into this, I found that my imagination was pretty tame compared to that of others. How about styling your hair with chocolate? Or building a house from chocolate. My personal favourite was nail art with chocolate – really handy if you’re a nail biter!
Here’s the YouTube link for the top 10 things to do with chocolate.
Lynda is having a Facebook party today to celebrate her book launch where she would love you to drop by. Click HERE to go direct to the party. There are prizes and fun all day long. 🙂
I am offering a free e-copy of my bookUnited States of Love published by Harper Impulse. All you have to do is ‘Like’ my writer’s page by clicking the link on the right of this post, or clicking HERE, and send your ‘What I’d do with chocolate’ answer to Chocolate@renham.co.uk where Lynda will pick a winner at random.
The excitement has been brewing for a while now and finally, all the hard work behind the scenes has paid off. I am delighted to share with everyone the cover for an anthology by The Romaniacs (that’s my writing group and lovely ladies).
Romaniac Shorts is a diverse collection of short stories and flash fiction, ranging from romance, to crime, to fantasy, and we are thrilled to see a long held idea come together.
Romaniac Shorts is due to be launched next week, Thursday 13 February, to celebrate our two years of blogging together. It will be available to download through Amazon and all proceeds are to be shared between Dyslexia Action and the RNA.
I love the cover and, if you’re interested, I chose the flowery ones! 😉
Lori Connelly is the mastermind behind this fun round-robin/written fireside story. She began it back in November and each week a different Harper Impulse author has taken up the story and added their bit. This week it’s my turn.
Beth swallowed and took a step back. She most certainly wasn’t pregnant and a baby wasn’t in their plans for a few more years. In her mind, she had imagined her and Matthew having children but in New York, not here in the back of beyond.
Alice was looking at her, a peaceful yet intense expression on her face. ‘Your fate is here, on the farm.’ The words were spoken as fact, rather than persuasion. ‘Don’t fight what is to be,’ said Alice, this time resting her hand on Beth’s cheek.
Beth had no idea what happened, but in that moment, it was as if Alice transferred some sort of inner wisdom. Suddenly Beth knew that New York was no longer an option. Whatever was going to happen in the future wasn’t going to happen in the Big Apple. Her and Matthew were needed here.
Matthew’s voice broke her reverie. ‘Could someone tell me what the hell is going on? Please tell me there’s a hidden camera and someone is going to jump out and say it’s some sort of hoax TV show.’ He clasped his hands behind his head and paced the room. ‘Just let me get this straight. I’m in a secret log cabin, which in all the years I’ve lived on this farm, I know jack-shit about. In said cabin, is my Great Grandfather, who saved my life when I was 12, despite the fact he had been dead for years. Not only that, but my Grandmother, just happens to be here too, who, no offence Grandma Alice,’ he put a hand out in Alice’s direction, ‘but she’s resurrected herself too.’
‘Matthew …’ began Beth, she could see how agitated he was becoming.
Matthew cut in. ‘No, please Beth, I’m just getting to grips here.’ He took a breath. ‘Now, I know I’m the one with the medical qualification here and have brought people back from the dead before, but they had only been dead a few seconds or minutes, not years. Medical science hasn’t come on that quick.’ He stopped pacing and looked at Beth, then Alice and Walter. ‘Oh, but wait, that’s right, you two have travelled through time. Shucks, why didn’t I think of that before?’
Beth moved to his side and gently placed her hand on his arm. ‘I don’t understand all this either, but what other explanation is there? Let’s just run with it.’ She moved his hand to her stomach. ‘Your past is here for our future. And our future is here on the farm.’
He held her gaze and after a second or two spoke. ‘Not NYC?’ His question was a whisper.
She shook her head in reply, her eyes never leaving his.
Walter cleared his throat in a rather exaggerated manner. ‘Erm, I hate to interrupt but your Grandmother and I need to get back to our own times.’