Author Spotlight and Giveaway: Leisl Leighton…

Welcome to the Author Spotlight, Leisl Leighton, and congratulations on the release of ‘Dark Moon’!  Can you tell us a little bit about it, please?

Lately, Skye Collins has been unable to shake the feeling that she’s being watched. After a lifetime spent hiding her true nature, she knows that any unusual attention is something to be wary of.  And the only attention she’s been receiving lately is from the intense and attractive Jason McVale.

Jason claims to know things about Skye that can’t be true, and it’s obvious he’s hiding secrets of his own. Yet despite herself, Skye can’t resist the attraction between them, and her surrender will set in motion a chain of events that will have consequences for everyone she holds dear.

Gradually, Jason convinces Skye that she has to trust him if she is to solve the riddle of her past and learn the truth about her power.  But believing Jason means that her entire life has been based on a lie.

As her enemies gather strength and the danger increases, Skye is forced to accept who she really is. Will she risk everything and fight for those she loves? Or save herself and let them be destroyed by the forces of darkness?

DMoon

 

Your debut novel, Killing Me Softly, was a romantic suspense, while Dark Moon is a fantasy. Do you have a soft spot for either genre over the other?

I read a number of genres: fantasy, sci-fi, historical romance, paranormal romance, romantic suspense, YA, contemporary romance, chic lit and women’s fiction, but when it comes to writing, I do tend to stick to the urban fantasy romance, paranormal romance and romantic suspense. I have tried other genres, but they just don’t flow for me as well as these three. At the moment I am writing more paranormal romance and epic urban fantasy than romantic suspense, but that’s mostly because those are the stories coming to me, not because of a preference. If I had an idea for a romantic suspense right now, that’s what I’d be writing.  

Are there any other genres you would like to venture into in the future?

Maybe sci fi with a romantic bent. I have a story in my mind that’s tumbling around – nothing specific right now, but if it plays out a bit more, I might sit down and give it a try. 

Can you tell us about your world building in Dark Moon. Talk us through the process of  building a world filled with not entirely human creatures.

I used to be an actor, so when I write, I tend to ‘become’ my characters much as I did when I was on stage and they very much tell me who they are and how they became that – which tends to mean they inform me about their world, the ‘rules’ so to speak. It’s never really a conscious thought process for me of me sitting down and making copious notes before I write and making my characters fit to that. As I write the story it all evolves more in my mind. I make lots of notes as I go and on redrafts and edits make sure those ideas and traits are played through. 

You play a large role within the RWA as a volunteer. Can you tell us how you manage your time so that everything gets done? Are you a time managing supremo?

Other people tend to tell me I am, but I can tell you, at times it doesn’t feel that way. I try to do things as they come in so I don’t get a huge built up pile of stuff to do. There are times this doesn’t work though – things do have a habit of happening at once. I keep a list of things that must be done and tick it off as I go and I put deadlines into my email calendar so every time I open up my email, it reminds me what I need to do. I try to get up early in the morning to write and I have 1 day off per week that I spend mostly writing, which means I tend to get to everything else in the afternoon/night time or in spare moments on the weekends (like now – the boys are playing computer games after having their cousin over for a few hours, all the washing is done and the hubby is out doing the shopping – so I’m answering these questions.) In regards to housework, the essentials get done every week, but non essentials tend to get left to when people are coming over.

Killing Me Softly Cover2

 

I hear you’re a lover of all things Jane Austen. Which is your favourite:

a)      JA Novel,

b)     Movie / television adaptation,

c)      Mr Darcy.

Ooh, hard one. Can I say d) all of the above? I studied Jane Austen at university and have read all her books a number of times and watched many adaptations of her works. I do love the novels – I fell in love with them first. But a good adaptation of her works is pretty special too. And Colin Firth was pretty special as Darcy – both the historical one and the modern one. 

How do you think Jane Austen’s work has shaped contemporary romance? What can romance writers learn from Jane Austen?

I think she made writers and readers see that an ordinary life and existence is special and can be written about. I think she was an expert of ‘write what you know’ and she wrote about it with fondness and love. She was also excellent at putting her characters through the wringer in regards to the lessons they had to learn to end up with their HEA. She wrote simple stories, but they were full stories. I’ve heard lecturers go on about her use of irony, and how that makes her a special social commentator – which is important because she saw her world for all its faults, and much of this brought essential humour – but for me, what shines from these stories is the fact she loves her characters and their stories and that is why they still feel real for us all these centuries later. I think that’s the most important lesson – be real to yourself and love what you write. 

Can you tell us a little about your WIP?

I am currently working on the 2nd and 3rd in the Witch-Were Chronicles, Healer Moon and Blood Moon, and am making notes for the 4th one, Ghost Moon. Healer Moon takes place directly after the Dark Moon ends and picks up the romance between two of the other characters and keeps following the overall arc in regards to the nemesis in Dark Moon. Each novel adds to the history that backs up the mythology of the series, as well as giving other characters a HEA. 

What would we find on your book shelves/ereader?

You would find all of Raymond E. Feist’s series as well as Katherine Kerr, Anne McCaffrey and some Jany Wurtz. There is also Anne Gracie, Georgette Heyer, Joanna Lindsey, LaVyrle Spencer, Austen, Bronte and Shakespeare. And for something more current, lots of Nalini Singh, M.J Scott, Rachelle Meade, Stephanie Myers, JK Rowling, Sherilyn Kenyon and a bunch of other paranormal and YA paranormal authors. Also, there is a lot of Nora Roberts and JD Robb. And all the Anne of Green Gables series – I relate strongly to that red-headed girl with the large imagination.

Leisl Headshot tweet

 

You’ve entered into a lot of writing competitions, and have done very well. How important do you think it is for writers to participate in competitions? Any tips you’d like to share?

I think it is essential to a writer’s journey – just like having a critique partner or belonging to a writing group is. You NEED to get your work written by people who are not family and friends. They will give you their honest opinion and often a much needed dose of truth (no matter how painful that may be to swallow at first). Those first few comps really helped me to leap forward with my writing and brought to my attention the mistakes I was making.

In regards to tips – enter the ones that are appropriate to what you are writing and when you begin to do better in them, enter those ones with final editor/agent judges who deal with the kind of work you are writing. Also, read the scoresheets and comments, then put them away and don’t action them right away. Knee jerk fixing is sometimes more destructive to your work than helpful. Allow your ‘hurt’ to settle down to something manageable and after a few weeks/month, try to remember what was said on those scoresheets – the things that stick are most often the things you need to work on first. 

Could you give us a sneaky peek at one of your favourite parts of Dark Moon, please?

People keep asking this, but I don’t have a favourite part. All of it is there because it is my favourite. But I will share with you part of the opening scene, because it is the first scene that ever came to me and it wouldn’t leave me alone, demanding to be written even though I was working on something else. Skye is skiing when a snowboarder crashes into her:

Despite the pain sparking through her body – damn, she was going to have some impressive bruises for show and tell on Monday – she became uncomfortably aware of the way their hips pressed together, legs tangled. She hadn’t been this close to a man in way too long. This wasn’t the way she’d imagined it happening again, though.

She tried to move. The action made his board – amazingly still attached to his feet – cut into her leg. She winced. ‘Well, this is a very charming way to meet and all, but can you get off, please? You’re crushing my legs.’

‘Sorry.’ He scrambled back.

‘Oh, fudgy-duck!’ She gasped as his board scraped over the bruise.

‘Are you hurt?’ He ran his hand ran over her leg, checking for injury.

Shivers chased across her skin that had nothing to do with the snow melting inside her jacket. Skye pulled away. ‘No. I’m fine. Just let me stretch it out.’

He shifted back. But instead of getting up and skiing off like most other people would, he stayed, kneeling beside her as she stretched out her leg.

‘I’m so sorry. I usually ski, but my brother talked me into trying out a snowboard this year.’

Rubbing her aching leg, her temper spiked at his words. Glaring at him, she snapped, ‘Are you kidding me? What the hell are you doing on Federation? It’s a black run – or didn’t you notice all the signs up the top, you irresponsible arse?’

His eyebrows rose above his sunglasses. ‘Wow. That thing about redheads and tempers is true.’

She bristled. ‘You could have killed yourself, or someone else. Namely me!’

He brushed snow from his hair. ‘For your information, I was doing okay until I hit that goddamned icy patch. I don’t know why I agreed to try a board,’ he grumbled.

He sounded so much like her twin, River, when he was pouting, that her flare of anger disappeared and she had to hide her grin.

‘So why did you go over to the dark side?’

‘My trickster of a brother said it would be a rush, but I think he just wanted to see me fall on my arse.’

Her lips twitched. ‘That would be okay, except for the fact you fell on mine.’

‘It looked softer than mine.’

She choked on a laugh. ‘Are you saying I have a fat arse?’

Rather than trying to back-pedal, his mouth curled into a lopsided smile – such a lovely mouth. ‘No. In fact, I was thinking how nice it looked before I smacked into you.’

Skye dragged her eyes from his mouth. ‘Is that why you took me for a toboggan ride, with me as the toboggan? To meet me and my nice arse?’

‘That, and the fact you stopped so suddenly.’

She snorted. ‘I thought you said there was an icy patch.’

‘Yeah.’ He laughed. ‘I did. Didn’t I?’ He pushed his sunglasses off his face to look down at her.

She gaped.

He had the most startling eyes. They were deeply blue on the edge, almost black, but lightened to an icy blue at their centre. Lightning bolt striations crazed through the iris, making it seem like his eyes glowed. They reminded her of a picture of a wolf River had put on his bedroom wall when they were young. She’d asked him to take it down. He’d thought it was because she was frightened of big dogs, but it hadn’t just been that. The wolf’s eyes had haunted her in a way that had confused her ten-year-old soul.

This man’s eyes were even more dangerous to her equilibrium. They pulled her in. Her chest ached like she’d been winded.

He broke eye contact and pushed to his feet, allowing her to catch her breath.

‘Here, let me help you up.’ He put out his hand.

Web links

Website/Blog

 

Facebook

 

Twitter

Buy link for Dark Moon

 

Leisl is kindly gifting one Kindle copy of Dark Moon. Just answer the following question in the comments and you will go into the draw: 

‘If you were a shape shifter, what would you most like to turn into?’

This competition is open world wide and will be drawn on the 28th of March,  2014.

 

Author Spotlight & Giveaway: Victoria Black

Victoria[1]1. Welcome to the Author Spotlight, Victoria. Can you tell us about your latest release?

Heavenly Revenge is a fantasy, set on another world, in another reality. I love revenge scenarios in romance stories. There’s such yummy room for conflict between the man and the woman he hates, yet desires.  And that’s what Heavenly Revenge is all about, really. Our gorgeous hero hates our lovely heroine, but thinks she’s as sexy as hell. And the revenge he chooses? Well, I do write erotic romance.

Heavenly Revenge was released on 31st January 2013.

2. What do you like most about writing novellas?

Um, I like writing novellas because that’s the length they turn out to be. Of course, you don’t have to be a new author, as I am, to love the length of the novella. Angela Knight, who is a very experienced writer indeed, wrote many novellas. Her Roarke’s Prisoner inspired me to take up writing erotic romance. But to sound a little more professional, I like the tightness of novellas. With no important secondary characters or romances, everything focusses on my couple – always a couple, folks, a man and a woman – on their delicious journey to their happily ever after.

3. Do you have a writing schedule you follow, or are you a ‘write whenever I can’ type of author?

I’m a very busy retired person, trying to fit exercise classes and bridge around my writing. Oh God, the pressure! My husband has recently taken over cooking duties, so I tend to write of an afternoon and early evening.

LiesAndSeduction_125x1904. Do you write detailed character profiles before starting a new book, or do you find the characters come to life as you write? 

I’ve tried writing character profiles, but, while they seem great as profiles, as soon as I start to write, the characters insist on changing the whole plot, their background story, even their sexual affiliations.

5. Describe yourself in three words:

Sociable, Conscientious, Vulnerable.

6. Do you have a favourite craft book for writers?

Passionate Ink: A Guide to Writing Erotic Romance by Angela Knight. It’s not just about erotic romance. It’s a great general craft book as well.

7. What are your favourite genres to read?

Contemporary is my favourite, but science fiction romance and fantasy romance, so long as the couples are human or at least seem human, are great too. Historical genre – anything to do with the Second World War fascinates me.

8. Complete this sentence: When I’m not writing, I’m…

…reading or avoiding housework.

HeavenlyRevenge_SM9. What are you working on now/next?

I’m trying to finish a contemporary erotic romance, written from a man’s point of view, but I also have another revenge scenario half written that I want to finish soon too.

Thanks for joining us today, Victoria!

You can visit Victoria online at her website and facebook.

>> To WIN an ecopy of Heavenly Revenge, leave a comment for Victoria below…

Open Worldwide and winner drawn 8th March.

Author Spotlight & Giveaway: Imelda Evans

Today we have the lovely and talented Imelda Evans under the RWA Author Spotlight. Imelda is giving away a copy of her book to one lucky commentor! (worldwide)

1. Welcome Imelda! And congratulations on your release with Destiny Romance. Can you tell us a little about RULES ARE FOR BREAKING?

Rules are for Breaking is a contemporary romance set in Melbourne.  It’s a story of two people who’ve been successful in their professional lives, but less so in love.

Jo, my heroine has had it with men.  After a long run of trying to find a diamond in the rough and ending up with cubic zirconias, she’s decided she’s going to give them up altogether and find her bliss – whatever that means.

But Declan, my hero, has other ideas.  He’s decided that Jo is the woman for him and he’s not about to let her round-the-world cruise-sized set of baggage get in the way.

They’re both determined and good at getting what they want, but they have to learn that they can’t run their love lives the way they run their businesses if they want to make it to a happy ending.

2. How long have you been writing for? Did you always want to be a writer?

I have wanted to be a writer on and off over the years but for most of them it wasn’t a serious goal, more of a dream.  It wasn’t until I had been copywriting for 10 years and learned how to persist through writer’s block that I came back to the idea of writing fiction.  I’ve been writing fiction seriously for about five years.

3. Do you have a writing schedule you follow, or are you a ‘write whenever I can’ type of author?

I do better when I follow a schedule.  When I’m on a roll I will get struck with inspiration in the middle of other things and I’ll end up writing on the backs of envelopes and bus tickets and bookmarks and whatever comes to hand.  But the backs of envelopes only take you so far.  I get most done when I show up reliably at the same time each day.

4. Do you write detailed character profiles before starting a new book, or do you find the characters come to life as you write?

I usually start with characters (rather than situations) so I always know some things about them before I start, but it’s only the things that relate to the story.  The details get fleshed out as I go.  So, for example, I might know that a character doesn’t get on particularly well with her mother.  I need to know that at the start, because it affects her relationship with her daughter (say) – but I might not find out till well into the planning, or even the writing, why that is.  The thought of filling in one of those hyper-detailed charts where you know everything down to what their favourite colour is, horrifies me.  I like to set up the fundamentals and leave the rest to Jenny Crusie’s ‘girls in the basement.’

5. Describe yourself in three words:

Do I have to?  I always feel like saying Huey, Dewey and Louie, or Larry, Curly and Moe.  But if you insist…
Strong, Generous, Impatient

6. How important do you think it is for authors to be actively engaged in self promotion?

Ooh, hard one.  In the current publishing environment, I think a certain amount of self-promotion is expected, even if you have a traditional publishing deal.  I think it would be a rare author these days who didn’t at least have a website and many do a lot more than that.

Having said that, though, it is still true that the best promotion is to write a good book.  And then another one.  Engaging with other writers and readers can be great fun, and can help you build a profile, but the jury is still out on how much that genuinely helps your sales.  Do what you enjoy and energises you, but not at the expense of finishing the book!

7. What advice would you give to aspiring romance authors out there?

Write as often as you can.  Write more often than you can. Finish the book.  Enter competitions. Submit.  Write more. Go to conferences. Read craft books. Write more. Don’t give up!

I suppose the short version is that the road to success is paved with hard work!

The only other thing I would say is once you have written enough to find your voice, trust it.  Listen to advice you’re given – especially if a lot of people are saying the same thing – but always filter it through your own feelings about the story, the characters and your voice.

8. What are you working on now?

I am currently working on two projects.  One is a companion story to Rules are for Breaking, tentatively titled Rules of Engagement, which tells the story of Jo’s brother and sister-in-law getting together.  The other is a longer story which is not so much a romance – although it does have a very tasty policeman in it – as a funny, girly thriller.  It’s about a group of women who come together for a craft weekend and find themselves caught up in something much darker.

I also have roughly half a million other brilliant ideas of stories I’d like to do, but I am taking my own advice and firmly sitting on them until these ones are finished!

Thanks for joining us, Imelda!

Imelda is published by Destiny Romance. You can visit her online at her website/blog, facebook, and twitter.

To WIN an ebook copy of RULES ARE FOR BREAKING, comment below and tell us a rule that you think is meant for breaking. Winner will be drawn on Fri 30th Nov and notified via email. Winner has one week to respond to the email or another winner will be chosen. Good luck!

Author Spotlight & Giveaway! Sue Moorcroft

Today we welcome UK author Sue Moorcroft to the RWA Author Spotlight. Sue is also giving away four books! To enter, answer the question at the end of the interview…

1. Congratulations on the release of your books into Australia, Sue. Can you tell us which titles are available here now?

Thank you! Starting Over came out on 1 April, All That Mullarkey on 1 May, with Want to Know a Secret? due on 1 June. These books have already been published in the UK so my publisher, Choc Lit, on moving into Australia, scheduled them for consecutive months. My UK June 1 release, Love & Freedom, is scheduled to be published in Australia on 1 August, I believe.

2. Do you have a favourite book from all those you’ve written?

Isn’t this a difficult question? It’s like being asked to choose a favourite from your children. I often recommend that people begin with Starting Over, because All That Mullarkey kind of follows on, in that it’s largely set in the same village of Middledip in Cambridgeshire, England, and the hero of Starting Over has a walk-on role in All That Mullarkey, and, of course, the people at the shop and the pub etc are the same.

All that said, I have huge enthusiasm for Love & Freedom because it was such a great book to write and came out exactly as I hoped it would. But I think Want to Know a Secret? has the least expected plot. (See what I mean about it being difficult to choose …?)

 3. Can you tell us a little about your journey to publication, how did your career as an author begin?

I can, but how long do you have? I’ll try and be succinct. I wrote two novels, which were absolutely unfit for publication, but I loved writing them. I read that if I had a track record in short stories in national newsstand magazines of, say, twenty, publishers of novels would look more kindly on me. So I took a distance learning course and I took that route and, loosely, it did work – but I had sold eighty-seven short stories by the time I sold my first novel, Uphill All the Way! By then, I had also sold a serial, articles, and become a creative writing tutor. I sold my first short story in 1996, first serial in 2004, first novel in 2005. If you look at certain online stores you’ll see that there are books there that I don’t class as novels – because they began life as serials. But they are now, indisputably, books that you can hold in your hand, albeit large print and short run. This, and the fact that a hardback, Family Matters, later became a paperback with Choc Lit, Want to Know a Secret? makes my publishing history confusing.

I worked in a part-time non-writing role for a sports newspaper, Motor Cycle News, in the nineties, and that taught me a lot about the realities and wrinkles of publishing, especially regarding periodicals, such as: The editor may not always be right but s/he is always the editor.

 4. What is a typical day like for you?

Alarm goes off at 6.20 am, I’m at my desk about 7.30. I spend the next couple of hours on emails, writing blogs, reading blogs etc. I spend the morning reviewing the work of creative writing students (I mainly teach via distance learning) and/or competition entries (I’m the head judge for a UK writing magazine, Writers’ Forum) and write in the afternoon. ‘Writing’ covers research, planning, everything. I finish about 6pm. I work five to seven days a week.

I also have days ‘out of the office’, either on research, like last Friday when I spent a hugely enjoyable afternoon speaking to a guy who used to work for fighter control, which is like air traffic control for fighter jets (how cool is that?) or I’m at writing events or something to do with my committee member status of the UK’s Romantic Novelists’ Association (which post ends this month – I’ll really miss it!) As well as writing my novels, I often have a serial on the go and I write two columns a month for Writers’ Forum and I have a column at http://www.girlracer.co.uk/, covering Formula 1. I am a Formula 1-aholic.

5. Do you outline your stories or write as you go?

The more books I write, the more I plan. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that the first book I planned properly was the first published. Although, reflecting on that, Starting Over, although published after Uphill All the Way, was written first.

I like to know major elements, such as what is my heroine’s mission or what is she reacting to? What does my hero want? What is keeping them apart? Why should they be together? How can I surprise readers? How can I keep this book going forwards? And, although I have a bee in my (extremely large) bonnet (which is fairly buzzing) about giving books forward impetus and page turning quality, I have to know the history of my major characters. History shapes attitudes and beliefs and I like to begin books at a moment of change or significance so, generally, this is where the history ends and the book takes over.

In Starting Over, Tess has been dumped via email two days before her wedding and, on her way to her new life, crashes her vehicle into the back of Ratty’s breakdown truck. (Miles Arnott Rattenbury, really, he’s from a family of lawyers and stuff but has pretty much rejected that life and is the tattooed owner of a business restoring and maintaining classic cars.) Tess’s history explodes the relationship between her and Ratty, throughout the book. It’s important.

By the time I’m ready to write, I generally have a kind of compost heap of notes and comments. I’ve written histories for my characters that begin in third person. When I unconsciously switched over to first person, I feel I’m getting under the skin of the character – it’s a bit like method acting. That said, I like to look at characters from the point of view of other characters, too. Tess, for example, is viewed as a source of anxiety by her parents: unpredictable and unsettled. But Ratty sees her as a hugely talented illustrator and hot babe. Her ex-fiance, Olly, sees her career as risible – drawing pictures for kiddies – and is always surprised she makes money at it.

 

6. Do you have any advice or words of wisdom for aspiring writers?

a) Persist. I truly believe that the name for a writer who doesn’t give up is ‘published’ (and am living proof).

b) Educate yourself. Don’t fall for all that stuff about writers being born and not made. OK, you may have been born with a talent for storytelling, in the same way that you might have been born with natural rhythm or an eye for colour. But dancers and artists undergo extensive training, so why should a writer expect to become a writer, without training? This may not take the form of a course and certainly doesn’t necessitate a degree (I don’t have one), but consider reading writing magazines; going to talks by authors, agents and publishers; joining online forums; joining associations such as the RWA or RNA; joining your local writing group; reading books on writing. And going to conferences if you possibly can. The insight and inside knowledge floating around in the air at conferences opens many a door.

c) Network. This may just take the form of following a writer/editor/agent on Twitter or going up to talk to that person at the end of a talk. But do it. It will pay off.

7. When starting a new book, what comes first for you:  the plot, characters, or the title?

Usually, characters. Almost always. The title can be waaaaaay down the line but I did know it early in All That Mullarkey and also my wip, Dream a Little Dream. For me, plot springs from characterisation – I don’t shape my characters around my plot. In the thematically titled Starting Over, it’s one of Tess’s major personality traits that when things go badly for her, she just takes herself somewhere else and starts over. It’s when she finds something worth sticking around for that the book pivots.

 

8. Have you been to Australia? If not, where would you like to visit?

No, but I have wanted to from childhood, and it’s still on my ‘to do’ list. When I was a British army child in Malta we used to get a few Australian kids’ programmes so I thought that if I went to Australia I’d be able to have my own kangaroo. As a teenager I conceived the ambition to scuba dive on the Great Barrier Reef. As an adult, I had a friend who lived in Port Douglas for a while and I really liked the sound of that. I’d also like to go to Melbourne for the Formula 1. And visit the outback, because I adored the books of Nevil Shute.

The only one of these things I have discounted is owning the kangaroo.

9. What is the best writing advice you’ve ever received?

Don’t make enemies.

10. Do you have a favourite author or book that inspires you?

My all-time favourite book is A Town Like Alice by Nevil Shute. I love romantic novels of all kinds and read voraciously but it’s always an absolute pleasure for me when I realise I haven’t read Alice for five or six years and so will enjoy it anew.

11. Do you spend a lot of time promoting yourself and your books? What have you found to be the most effective ways of ‘getting your books out there’?

OMG. Yes, I do spend a lot of time.

A lot.

I am active on Twitter and Facebook and find the former particularly useful – not just for promotion, by the way, but for research, too. I have my own blog; I guest on the blogs of other people and do online interviews such as this one; together with my publisher, I participate in various events both online and in reality; I run workshops at conferences or libraries or festivals; ditto speaking; I do book signings.

The Choc Lit publicist, Luke Roberts, arranges radio interviews, signings, etc. One of the (many) things I love about Choc Lit is that they are market savvy and forward thinking.

An interesting thing we’ve just begun is to use digital technologies to provide promo economically. To this end I wrote a prequel chapter to Love & Freedom and we’ve called it Flight to Freedom. It’s not only going to be available as a free download but it has also been recorded and will be a free audio download. (The plan is that you will listen to Flight to Freedom and run out to buy Love & Freedom to discover what happens to Honor …)

I’m also lucky enough to be a regular guest on BBC Radio Cambridgeshire’s ‘In the Chat Room’ afternoon show, which is always fun and they let me plug my books.

I have to say that I enjoy most aspects of promo, apart from the time it takes up. I love the digital world and that I can be talking to someone in Australia or America on email, Twitter or Facebook, as easily as I could be chatting to someone in the next house. I’m happy to stand up in front of an audience, too.

12. What’s next for you, are you working on a new manuscript right now?

Yes, Dream a Little Dream is the story of Liza, who is the sister of All That Mullarkey’s Cleo. She was just too naughty and fun to leave forever as a secondary character, but she has had a bad life experience since All That Mullarkey days and has sworn off men and alcohol. Her sister, Cleo, says to her, ‘Liza, don’t you think you’ve left it a bit late to develop virginity?’

13. How can readers connect with you online or find out more about your books?

Glad you asked! My website is at http://www.suemoorcroft.com/ and my blog at http://suemoorcroft.wordpress.com/. I welcome friends on Facebook or followers on Twitter.

All of my Choc Lit novels and Love Writing (my ‘how-to’ on writing romantic or erotic fiction for money) are available as ebooks. I’m in the throes of making Uphill and my serials available as ebooks, but it’s taking a while.

 

~ Sue Moorcroft writes romantic novels of dauntless heroines and irresistible heroes for Choc Lit. Combining that success with her experience as a creative writing tutor, she’s written a ‘how to’ book, Love Writing – How to Make Money From Writing Romantic and Erotic Fiction (Accent Press). Sue also writes short stories, serials, articles and courses and is the head judge for Writers’ Forum. She’s a Katie Fforde Bursary Award winner.

~ Click the following links for Sue’s books:

Starting Over

All that Mullarkey 

Want to Know a Secret 

Love & Freedom 

All Sue’s books are on Amazon  

 **Sue has four books to give away to four lucky winners! To win a copy of either Starting Over or All That Mullarkey, comment below before 18th May, and answer the following question: ‘What do you like about books set in the UK?’

BLOG BITE with Alison Ahearn w/a Amy Andrews

It’s a bit daggy… but I love Achy Breaky Heart (yeh, yeh… I know)

3 things people might not know about me…

I met the man of my dreams at 16.

I’ve nursed two sets of conjoined twins and was even on 60 Minutes for about 5 secs!!

I made the honour board at my high school

My first job was…

waitress/dishwasher at the local racecourse restaurant. I was 13 and earned $14.81 cents for four hours work every Saturday afternoon and saved up to buy my first stereo player.

My secret skill that is no longer a secret…

I can do the splits. These days I usually reserve it for a party trick though 😮

I write medical romance for HMB.

Alison writes as Amy Andrews (visit her web site here). Her next book, A Mother For Matilda, is out mid-April. To win a copy of her new release leave a comment before 5pm tomorrow (Sat).

BOOK WINNER: Alison chose Anita’s ‘priceless’ comment. Congratuations Anita and thanks to Alison for sharing.

BLOG BITE with Margaret Tanner

Three words to describe me – Never Say Die

 My worst habit is – My addiction to chocolate

 My first job was as an Army Major’s secretary

 Currently readingSisters in Time by Ginger Simpson.

I write because I can’t help myself.  I am just compelled to do it.  I have so many characters and plots churning around in my brain, I sometimes wonder why my head doesn’t explode.

Margaret’s latest novel, and her fifth from The Wild Rose Press, is released today. Wild Oats is set during the 1st World War and is the prequel to The Trouble With Playboys, also from The Wild Rose Press. Find out more about Margaret here. 

Wild Oats – Captain Phillip Ashfield toasted his elevation to fatherhood, as a barrage of artillery pounded the battle scarred fields around him. English aristocrat, Phillip Ashfield, comes to Australia to sow some “Wild Oats”.  After seducing Allison Waverley, he decides to marry an heiress to consolidate the family fortunes.  Phillip has made a fatal choice, that will not only ruin his own life, but the repercussions will be felt by the next generation.

Margaret is giving away a copy of Wild Oats to the author of her favourite comment.

BLOG BITE with Denise Rossetti

denise_publicity2My worst habit is… living in a different world. It makes me incredibly vague about this one, to the point where I muddle up appointments andBlog bite forget things like birthdays or picking up the dog from the canine hairdresser. I generally arrive at work having no idea how I actually got there, which is more than a bit scary. Mercifully, I haven’t forgotten my head yet, but I’m sure that day will come.

My Beloved usually has to ask me the same question three or four times. “Where are you now?” he says – because I sure ain’t in Brisvegas, Dorothy!

It’s a bit daggy but… I can’t eat scrambled eggs without putting tomato sauce on them. Yeah, I know. *sigh*

My first job was… In the toy department at Myers over the Christmas holidays. I was fifteen. I managed to jam the cash register on the afternoon of Christmas Eve. They didn’t ask me back. Funny that…

Three things people might not know about me are…

  1. I’m a first-class knitter, as in I can follow any pattern, any at all. (Except for socks.) But I’m a craftsperson, not an artist, more’s the pity. Not that’s there’s much call for winter woollies in Brisbane. *sigh*
  2. I was married on the weekend of the Australia Day flood in 1974. (Child bride, okay?) I still remember my lovely mother-in-law-to-be sobbing to my Mum on the phone that there was twenty feet of water between her family and the garden wedding. My Mum cried too. When I stood next to My Beloved in front of the minister (indoors), I looked up at him (My Beloved, not the reverend) with so much love in my heart, thinking, well at least I have my darling. His beautiful blond hair was in wet rats tails and a big drop fell off the end of his nose. *sigh* Because the airport was closed, we spent our wedding night in his little flat – full of bachelor housekeeping – musty towels, old newspapers etc And a squillion slugs who were so wet they’d crawled in under the door looking for a dry spot. I cried so hard, he let me choose the hotel for the next night. The one I picked got flooded the following day. I waded out of the hotel foyer in my bikini and the water came up to my armpits. It was cold. And dirty. Blech.
  3. I belonged to an amateur dramatic company for years. I played the murderer in “Death on the Nile”. (Mia Farrow in the film.) I can carry a tune, though it’s pretty ordinary. I even had a solo in a pantomime kind of thing once. My character was ten years old and I sang “My god, how the money rolls in.” Being a natural born show-off, I had an absolute ball!

I write… hot fantasy romance, and occasionally paranormal. There’s love and tenderness, adventure and bad guys, angst at suitable moments and of course, hawt sex!

Find out more about Denise here.

thief_412To win a copy of The Flame and the Shadow or Thief of Light (winner’s choice) leave a comment.flame_411 Winner will be announced late Saturday. The giveaway is now closed.

BLOG BITE with Maggi Andersen

Maggi AndersenMy worst habit is …. My worst habits are of a domestic nature. When a book’s going well, nothing else gets done. I have to make a conscious effort to get dressed before breakfast or lunch time swings round and I’m still in my fav blue gown.  Can prove embarrassing if a visitor calls.  If, however, my characters are acting up, or I can’t make a scene Blog bitework, I clean out the fridge and wash the floors. Either way, my husband has now taken to vacuuming, shopping and even cooking, which is great. 

Currently reading … I am currently re-reading Georgette Heyer’s Cotillion. I haven’t read her work for years but I’m enjoying it very much. There are some great Regency writers out there, but nobody does it quite like Heyer. It’s not just the world she builds for our delight, it’s her wonderful humour and her characters just leap off the page.

Plotter or pantser…. I began writing as a pantser, but experience has taught me I write a better book if I combine the two. I always know the ending, but now plan to have some idea of how I’m going to get there, this makes me feel more in control of my characters. They can still surprise me though by doing the most extraordinary things. Did I know when I first began to write Rules of Conduct that Viola would ignore convention and her own beliefs when she fell in love with the Duke of Vale?

Who would you most like to meet and why … If you mean a writer, I have met some great ones and found them all charming and accessible. Eloisa James would be the one I’d most like to meet now. She is one of my favourite historical romance writers. Her research is fabulous, her characters quirky and she writes with such flair.

I write… I enjoy writing in different genres. I’ve written two young adult novels that haven’t found a home as yet. I often work on a historical and a contemporary at the same time. It seems to work well for me that way. I planned to be a crime writer. My first novel, Casey’s Luck was to be a murder mystery set in England, but the romance between Casey Rowan and the Scottish policeman, Rod Carlisle grew of it’s own volition, and turned the work into a romantic suspense. Then I discovered how much I enjoyed writing historicals and now have books in the Victorian and Regency eras. I’m working on a Georgian romance set during the French Revolution. An extraordinary time in history, which requires lots of research. My Regency historical novel, Rules of Conduct, comes out with Awe Struck Publishing this month. My Victorian gothic novel, Night Garden, which I wrote for my mother who passed away in June, comes out next year with New Concepts Publishing, and a contemporary romantic suspense short story, If You Dare, is to be published with Eternal Press in February. I still have an unfinished crime novel I will return to eventually.

Maggi’s latest book, Rules of Conduct, a regency novel, is due for release in November with Awe-Struck Publishing. To read an excerpt, visit Maggi’s blog.

To celebrate the upcoming release of Rules of Conduct, Maggi is giving away one copy to a lucky visitor. All you have to do is leave a comment to go into the draw. The winner’s copy will be available after release.

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