Author of Historical Romance
I have been a full-time writer for several years now. Always an enthusiastic scribbler, I found that the urge to write only became stronger with time. In the end I decided to take a chance and quit the day job to find out if I could achieve success as an author. However, I couldn't have done it without my husband's unstinting support. Fortunately the gamble has paid off. It has been a long haul, with plenty of financially lean periods, but it was well worth the effort. There is nothing quite like the buzz that comes with that phone call to say a publisher wants to buy your book.
Along the way I have been fortunate to have the support and encouragement of a strong and successful writers’ group. Not only have I appreciated the friendship of its members, but have also found their critical insight and feedback invaluable. So too is the support of my editor at Harlequin. With endless patience she steered me through the revisions of the first book and saved me from myself on numerous occasions. Being able to see the resulting improvement made the work enjoyable and rewarding.
As I have always had a passion for Literature and History it is no hardship to do the necessary research for my books. Initially my main interests were the Enlightenment and the Regency, but in recent years I have developed a fascination for the early Medieval period as well. Researching these different eras is exciting because there is always something new to be discovered. Invariably though I end up with far more material than I can use so it's a matter of deciding what must be left out. Historical detail must never hold up the story I want to tell. I always have a rough plan in my head, a general idea of where the story is going, although the characters invariably take on a life of their own. They have no qualms about departing from the script and taking me down another path. It's fun to go with them and see where it leads. Frequently their way turns out to be better than mine so I’ve learned to listen to them now.
When it comes to the historical background for a new story, I always choose events in which I have a keen interest, and which involve a serious conflict of some kind. The central love story is juxtaposed with this and gives the characters more obstacles to overcome. The Great Viking Invasion was fertile ground, as were the Luddite Rebellion and the Harrying of the North which provided the settings for my second and third books respectively. The Peninsular War is the background for His Counterfeit Condesa, and for its companion novel, The Caged Countess. This conflict was also the background to Redemption of a Fallen Woman which is my contribution to the Castonbury Park series.
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