....welcome to my blog on writing, reading and living in London ......

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Some good news!

I am delighted to say that one of my pocket novels, 'Healing Love' is about to be released in digital format by Xcite, an imprint of Accent Press. Here's the cover, it's set in a GPs surgery with a doctor hero who has more than a few family problems to deal with. I'm so pleased about this digital publication on many fronts. Xcite were shortlisted for Imprint and Editor of the Year 2011 in the Bookseller Industry Awards and they reported a nine-fold increase in e-book sales in 2010. They and their Managing Director, Hazel Cushion are extremely forward looking and know exactly what readers want. I'm proud to be associated with them and wish them every success. It's also nice to see a British publisher forging ahead. They are based in Wales not far from where I recently went for Kate Walker's course on writing romance and where I shall be going in the summer to the Romantic Novelists Association conference. As soon as I work out how to put buttons on my blog which zap straight through to Accent to purchase the book I'll do so. Technology's never been my strong point but I'll do my best!

Friday, 15 April 2011

Changing direction

Well, my Draft in 30 Days blogged about earlier has hit a snag. But, at least it's a nice snag. That's because whilst I was at the beginning of starting with Karen Weisner's method an e-mail dropped into my in box. It was from the editors at Mills and Boon. I had submitted the first three chapters and a synopsis for a sheikh novel way back in August last year. True it took them some time but they have said that they like the basic idea, think it's fresh and intriguing but they had a few problems with it. If I wanted to work on the problems and re-submit they'd be happy to have a look. Would I? Ohmigod yes I would!

Looking at it critically and taking their comments on board I have only kept the first chapter and had to ditch the other two altogether. Before now I have found that incredibly hard to do, but this time, with the benefit of their comments I found it easy. After all, they know their stuff and if that's what they want I must try and meet it. The rewrite is going slowly but surely. Slowly because I am now being more critical of myself. This morning for example, I looked with a real eagle eye at what I had produced yesterday. I'd gone and done exactly what they had asked me not to do in the feedback - basically, I had moved the relationship on too quickly. As an individual who likes to complete a task as soon as, I realised that I sometimes do this for my characters. But, Mills and Boon readers like the suspense of not knowing how the relationship is going to go. They want it to twist and turn and meander and for their heroes and heroines to really work at it. So, again, I ditched large amounts of what I'd done and wrote the scene again. I think it works much better this time and realise that culling sometimes has to be done. I look on it now not so much as a waste of time but as a means of writing myself into a scene, testing out my characters. Let's hope it does the trick. Oh, and that photograph, it's of my teeny, weeny summerhouse which I hope, when I get a minute to kit out with a table and chair so that I can write in there in the warm summer months..... if they ever arrive that is!

Sunday, 3 April 2011

To Marry a Prince - Book Launch

Okay, I know I should be updating this blog on how my First Draft in 30 Days attempt is going but it's the weekend and all work and no play makes an author a dull girl. So, yesterday I upped and went off to the King's Road branch of Waterstones in Chelsea for a swanky book launch, all fizz and chatter. 'To Marry a Prince' is Sophie Page's sparkling new take on royal weddings. With the opening page bearing the promise 'Britain as it might have been......' the first chapter introduces us to Bella. Feisty, independent she's spent the last year toiling on an island on the other side of the world dressed in shorts, muddy t-shirt and her hair hasn't seen conditioner in months. Scrubbed up though and having enjoyed the tender loving care of a good hairdresser she accompanies her friend Lottie to a society party and that's when the fun begins.... With the world soon to enjoy the wedding of commoner Kate Middleton to Prince William, Sophie's lovely book with its royal blue and gold cover is totally topical and I can't wait to read the rest of it.

One of the nicest things about book launches is the chance to chat to fellow authors and here's a photo of me with Carol Townend. A super knowledgeable historian, Carol writes medieval novels and is at present writing a series for Mills and Boon based in medieval Constantinople. She regaled us with tales of her trip to Istanbul to do research, just one of the fun things about being an author. But it also highlighted all the hard work that goes in to any novel and the extra element that goes into historical novels. Carol is keenly aware of the need to get her facts right as well as getting the romance element between the hero and heroine perfect.

So, a great evening was had by all, the champagne flowed, we were surrounded by books and my dear husband and I toppped it all off with dinner at a Lebanese restaurant in the King's Road, a stone's throw from Buckingham Palace where THE royal wedding will very shortly take place. Huge thanks goes to Sophie and all the lovely staff at Waterstones and the greatest luck to her for mega success with her book.