Friday 30 November 2012

Celebrating The Minxes of Romance New Release!

This week sees the release of the first anthology bringing together the talents of the fabulous Minxes of Romance, BLAZE.

Q: What could be more appealing than a lovely romance anthology?
A:  A lovely romance anthology with firemen!

This collection includes eight stories, all set in a fictional village in England's beautiful Lake District, and with each story focusing on a different member of the local retained firefighting crew.

It showcases the writing talents of eight of the Minxes, two of whom write for Harlequin Presents, another for Harper Collins, one for Pocket Novels and still another successfully self-published. Eight very different voices to try and a mix of heat levels to suit all tastes.

There are times when shorter length stories are exactly what I want - the fact that it's possible to devour the whole thing in one hungry gulp is brilliant - and a linked collection of stories like this one has added appeal because you still get that wider familiarity with characters and setting that usually only comes from a longer-length novel. They are also the perfect 'taster' for trying out an author for the first time - if you like what you see, there's always a backlist to follow up!

So what do you think? Do you like anthologies? Would a group of similar-themed stories or a linked collection like this one be an added appeal or do you prefer the depth of a full-length novel?

BLAZE is available now!
- Buy from
Buy from

To find out more about BLAZE, you can read Minx Romy Sommer's interview over at the Hot Pink Typewriter Blog from Monday or visit

Monday 19 November 2012

The Next Big Thing!

I've been tagged in a blog chain by the lovely (and recently signed) Rae Rivers - read about her Next Big Thing here. Not that I need an excuse to blather on about my first release lol! So without further ado...

What is the title of your book?
Secrets of the Rich and Famous

How did you come by the idea?
After finalling in New Voices I was lucky enough to be given the chance to work with a M&B editor to develop a story from scratch. I was asked to submit three story ideas and the RIVA team picked the one they thought was the strongest. I got the original idea when I saw a news story about executive house sitters - people who get to live in gorgeous houses at a fraction of the rent in return for keeping the place occupied and secure. I wondered what would happen if you were using a posh place like that as a cover story for something and then the real owner reappeared, wanting it back. That is essentially the beginning of Secrets...

What genre does your book fall under?
Contemporary Romance

Which actors would you choose to play your characters if it were a movie?
As I mentioned in my last post, Alex was always based on Alex O'Loughlin, who plays Steve McGarrett in Hawaii Five-0. I didn't really choose an actress for Jen from the start but I think Kate Hudson would be good.

What is a brief synopsis of your book?
Jen is a village journalist trying to get a foot in the door at a top women's magazine by pitching an article that investigates whether an ordinary girl with a high street wardrobe and an overdraft can land a Chelsea millionaire. Since a man like that would immediately think gold-digger, she needs a makeover on a budget and a fictional new life. Jen has bagged herself a Chelsea apartment to house sit, passing it off as her own, and is scuppered when the real owner, Alex, returns, needing the property back as a bolt hole from a media scandal. Having flown halfway round the world to escape the press, he isn't impressed to find one of them has moved in with him. Jen sees him as a fantastic source of information for her project and when she ropes him into helping her, sparks begin to fly.

Will your book be self-published or traditional?
It will be traditionally published by Mills & Boon RIVA.

Who or what inspired you to write this book?
I'd been targeting M&B for a while and doing well in New Voices really made me more determined than ever. I began to take my writing more seriously and I was determined to grab the chance to work with an editor and throw everything at it. Thankfully it paid off!

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
As this book was written with editorial guidance, I submitted three chapters at a time and then received feedback and revisions on them which I did before proceeding with the next part of the story. This kept me on track and avoided major rewrites/ revisions at the end. Chapters 7-9 took about 3 months including time waiting for feedback and then I wrote the final three chapters in two weeks! By then they'd offered me a contract and asked for the end to be completed quickly. I nearly had a meltdown over it, but the pressure must have done me good because they accepted the final part without revisions.

What about your book might pique the reader's interest?
I think (hope) it's a fun story that will make people smile. And it's set at Christmas time in Chelsea - twinkly lights and frosty pavements - what's not to like!

For the next author in the chain, check out the fabulous (and also newly signed!) Christy McKellen's blog to find out about her Next Big Thing!

Tuesday 13 November 2012

My First Cover!

Here it is! My first ever cover for Secrets of the Rich & Famous - I can't describe the unreality of looking at it and seeing my name on it! It's an old-style cover since RIVA is still in its relaunch stage until the end of the year, but I don't care! I'm so delighted with it and I couldn't wait to share!

Here is the back blurb...

"Can she fake it until she makes it?
Join me, journalist Jen Brown (aka Little Miss Ordinary), as I research my next article: can anyone bag a Chelsea millionaire if she looks the part? I'm discovering that the glossy, I-haven't-spent-any-time-on-my-appearance look isn't quick...
To make sure I can fake it with the best of them at the whirlwind of intimidatingly glam Christmas parties, I've blagged myself a secret weapon: the help of genuine billionaire and deliciously gorgeous film director Alex Hammond."

The girl on the cover really looks perfect for my heroine Jen, skinny and blonde, she even looks like she's wearing  fake tan just like Jen does, but interestingly the guy looks nothing like I imagined Alex to look. In my head Alex looks like Alex O'Loughlin (you see, I even gave him the same name!), who plays Steve McGarrett in Hawaii Five-O. Here's a pic on the right in case you haven't seen him.

 But to be honest, they could have put two warthogs on the cover with my name underneath and I would still have been excited! It's the stuff of dreams.

Secrets of the Rich & Famous is due to be released 7th December, but due to the RIVA relaunch it will only get a limited release - it will be part of the UK Mills & Boon Direct To Consumer programme. There will also be a few print copies available on Amazon UK only, click here if you would like one and it will take you there. Hopefully a wider digital release will happen at a later date.

In other news I have emerged from the revisions cave and have pressed SEND on the full MS of The Date Pool. There are likely to be still more revisions but hopefully not horrific ones now, so I am feeling much calmer and am busy catching up on neglected housework and family stuff for a day or two.

Back with a progress report soon!