Thursday 10 January 2013

Twenty Questions with... Christy McKellen

Oh dear... this is coming to you far later than planned - thanks to the flattest tyre I have ever seen which resulted in an awful lot of walking for me today, and my fab husband saving the day - but I'm sure you'll agree, it was well worth the wait.

I am delighted to welcome Christy McKellen, author of Her New Worst Enemy onto my blog today. So, let’s get 2013 started with another round of twenty questions…

Hi Aurelia, thanks so much for having me here today. 

ACT ONE – all about you…

Formerly a Video and Radio Producer, Christy now spends her time as either a slave to her children or her muse. When she’s not writing spicy romance, she can be found stomping around the South West of England, glomming her to-be-read pile or escaping from real life with her rather delicious husband.

1) Have you always been a writer, even during your Video and Radio Producer days, or is it something you fell into?

I’ve always enjoyed writing – creative writing was my favourite subject at school and I’ve written stories purely for pleasure for years. I used to do quite a bit of writing in my job, but it was mostly fact-based. Sadly very little romance is required in the corporate world.

2) Out of all the skills you acquired in your ‘old life’, which one would you say has helped you the most in your new writing career?

Understanding how to structure a programme has really helped me in structuring my stories. Also, finding interesting ways to talk about what can be pretty ordinary things has been a really useful tool for both careers.

3) Do you have a particular writing style or ritual?

I don’t really. I write when I can steal the time and it can be anywhere: the sofa, the kitchen table, in bed… the list goes on. I think of myself as an adaptable writer.

4) Is there a book or an author that has influenced you in your writing?

I’ve been influenced by a lot of different authors; I like to read widely to keep myself on my toes. If I had to choose one author, it would be Kate Atkinson – I love her voice and her writing is so smart and engaging.

5) Can you tell us three things about yourself that we probably don’t already know?

Sure. I can’t roll my tongue, even though the rest of my family can (swapped at birth maybe :) I had a great uncle called Gordon Bennett and I used to be pretty good at high jump – not any more sadly, I’ve lost my bend.

Oooh, I got called Gordon a lot at school because my maiden name is 'Bennett' :-)

6) What five luxury items or gadgets would you hate to be without?

My laptop, my Kindle, my smart phone, my kettle (big tea drinker) and my six-foot bed.

ACT TWO – all about your new release…

Scroll down for excerpt!
Six months ago Ellie Holdsworthy’s life was all planned out - kids, wedding, happy ever after - until her boyfriend dumped her for another woman. Now her best friend, Penny - an heiress to a small fortune - looks set to run off with a gold-digger, and Ellie is determined to save her from certain doom . Unfortunately, the only person who can help is the one person she’d rather not ask...
Little does Ellie know, persuading her brother’s best friend - commitment phobic, playboy businessman, Gideon DeLancy - to hold an intervention at his beautiful Georgian manor would be the easy part. Keeping her hands off him is a whole other matter.
Gideon doesn’t intend to fall for his friend's snarky sister, and he sure as hell doesn’t expect their weekend to develop into a full-on sex-fest. When passion takes a strangle-hold, their differences don’t seem to matter. After all, a torrid weekend affair should be the easiest thing in the world to walk away from, so why are they finding it so difficult...?

7) Congratulations on your recent release of Her New Worst Enemy, what was your inspiration for writing Ellie and Gideon’s story?

A friend of mine went through a similar experience to Ellie’s and came through fighting. She’s a real inspiration to me. I wanted Ellie to have someone as great – albeit as damaged – as Gideon to help her through to the other side. They pretty much save each other.

8) Did the story flow from your finger tips or did some scenes take a bit of cajoling?

It mostly flowed, I’m pleased to say. There were moments when I wanted to bang my head on the desk, but they were few and far between.

9) I see Her New Worst Enemy is your debut, how long did it take for the initial spark of the story to make it onto the page and then onto the publisher’s desk?

I wrote the first chapter a couple of years ago and it languished on my hard drive until the beginning of last year when I dusted it off and set back to work on it. After I began again, it took about six weeks to write, four more to edit and prepare it for submission.

10) Do you have a favourite paragraph or sentence that you would like to tantalise us with?

Ellie is a bit off the wall and says some rather snarky things to Gideon when she’s feeling uncertain of herself. She’s barged into a restaurant while his date is in the bathroom to ask for his help and has one last ditched attempt at getting him on board with her rather crazy plan:

Diplomacy lost the fight with desperation. “Gideon.” She cut him off, leaning in, menacingly. “I’m not budging from this chair until you agree to do this. I can make life very difficult for you. I’m not above a bit of stalking, and if you don’t agree right now, your current eye candy will have to finish her meal sitting on my lap.”

Ellie crossed her arms defiantly and stared across at him, her heart racing, inwardly begging him to relent. Maybe she’d gone too far? But desperate times called for desperate measures, and if he didn’t agree she had no idea what she’d do. He was her only real hope.

11) Over to you, what can you tell us about Her New Worst Enemy, to make us rush out and buy it?

It’s sexy, snarky fun. What’s stopping you?

12) What can we expect from you next? Is there something you are working on right now?

I have about three projects on the go, but the one I’m aiming to finish next is set in the South of France and involves a workaholic and a wanderer. Sparks are definitely going to fly between these two!

QUICK FIRE ROUND – it’s pop quiz time…

13) Plotter or pantser?


Well that's a new one on me - somebody that does a bit of both, perhaps?

14) Secret Seven or Famous Five? (please tell me you know them!?)

I really liked both, but I’ll go with Secret Seven.

15) Digital books or print books?

Again both, but I buy way more digital books now I have my Kindle.

16) Tea or coffee?

Tea, definitely.

17) Cats or dogs?

Cats. I have a jazz cat called Zorro at home. He’s a bit unhinged, but very loving.

18) Extrovert or introvert?


19) Save or spend?


20) Facebook or Twitter?

Probably Twitter. I like the brevity of it.

And that's a wrap!

Thank you so much for taking part, Christy, I wish you lots of success with Her New Worst Enemy and already have it in my 'to-read' list.

Thanks for having me, it’s been fun!

Christy loves to hear from readers. You can contact her at:

Facebook     Twitter     Blog

So, we've seen the cover and read the blurb, now for all important details and a excerpt to whet the  appetite...

Published by Crimson Romance
Released 7th January 2013

Buy links:
Amazon UK
Amazon US


Ellie Holdsworthy took another long, shaky sip of wine as she waited for the perfect moment to put her plan into action.

From her vantage point at the restaurant bar she had a perfect view of Gideon and his date as they took turns impressing each other over their untouched food.

He hadn’t changed a bit since she’d last laid eyes on him nearly a year ago. His short, pitch black hair shone in the dim light of the candles flickering on the table, and even from this distance she could make out the sharp contours of his cheekbones and the full curve of his lips.

Her body thrummed with nerves. At least, that’s what she put the unsettling feeling down to.

She continued to watch him charm his date, his athletic, rangy body draped comfortably over the chair. A couple of women on a table to his left were also surveying him surreptitiously, mesmerized by his striking looks and effortless charisma.


She snorted with derision as he tipped his head back and gave a deep growling laugh at something his blond companion said. It was sad really, how the poor girl had no idea what she was letting herself in for.

If she hadn’t known him since she was twelve and seen this very same act being performed year after year with a different woman each time, she might have been taken in herself. As her brother’s best friend, Gideon DeLancy had been in and out of her life now for seventeen years. She was well versed in his womanizing ways.

Ellie knew why women fell for him. He was an amazing looking man, confident, In fact there wasn’t a single reason not to fall for him—if you didn’t mind your relationships short-term and emotionless. That was why she’d kept her own childish crush on him so well buried; there was no happy ever after with him. It was men like him who gave women like her false hope.

A flash of scarlet skirt at his table brought her focus back. She watched as his leggy blond companion rose and sashayed off towards the ladies room, finally leaving him alone.

Show time.


  1. Hi Aurelia, thanks so much for having me on your blog today, the post looks great! Hope you get your transport back soon too - it's not fun being without a car when you've got little ones!

  2. Hi Aurelia! Hello Christy!

    Great interview ladies. Congratulations on you release, Christy!

  3. Sounds like a fun, sexy read. I love me some snark. :-D


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