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Tuesday, 31 December 2013

Goodbye 2013, Hello 2014...


Impossible!

How can 2013 be over already?! o_O

I hope you have all enjoyed a very happy Christmas and wish you peace and happiness for the coming year.

Thank you all so much for taking to time to read my blog and following my journey. I feel like I have come a long way in the two and a bit years I've been writing and cannot believe I have already celebrated my first anniversary of becoming a published author.

Time really is flying by though and I intend to embrace it, saving my weekends and school holidays for family time, then knuckling down during school hours to get my work done rather than fritter it away online.

The Year in Review...


2013 saw the launch of Allie A. Burrow and the publication of my Young Adult/New Adult series but it has been a steep learning curve as I had to battle with writing to demand, rather than writing the story that is shouting the loudest. I really need to get disciplined and not be so distracted by the internet though; social networking and promotion is a major timesuck and before I know it, a whole morning has passed. Oops.

Way back at the start of the year, I set my usual challenge so what were my resolutions for 2013 and how did I do?

1) Read 50 books


I am absolutely thrilled to have achieved this and actually had a month or so to spare. Writing commitments meant I had to squeeze in reading time in clusters, going long spells without picking up a book and then having a major binge, but hey, I did it. I reached my goal without having to count 2-in-1's and 3-in-1's as separate books ;-)

2) Self-publish my first novel


Alas, I didn't achieve my goal of self-publishing but only because I landed a book deal with a major publisher so I'm not in the slightest bit disappointed. I'm still waiting on some legislation to go through Parliament that directly affects the Peer Pressure series I am writing anyway. I had also hoped to finish Their Last Goodbye but this is still stuck in the pending pile due to getting on with my Popping the Cherry series.

3) Take part in another sponsored event


I smashed this one by taking part in not one, but two sponsored events. First was my inclusion in the On Yer Bike event for Brain Tumour Research and then came the biggie with my skydive to raise funds for Rainbow Trust. I was also a volunteer for one of the Race 4 Life events, rather than a participant, which was incredibly rewarding.

The Year Ahead...


I am coming into 2014 with another book deal under my belt and a lot of plans. Not only am I contracted for Popping the Cherry books two, three, and four, 2014 also sees Christmas is Cancelled switching publishers and being relaunched in time for Christmas. I'd also really like to get the sequel written rather than making readers wait until 2015!

With all of this in mind, it is time to come up with my resolutions for the year ahead, sticking with my usual personal, professional and community themes, so here goes...

1) Read 26 books


I've had to really cut back on my reading challenge for 2014 as there is just too much writing to do and deadlines to be met. If I can average a book a fortnight though, I will end the year happy.

2) Get another 'Allie' book published


Although Allie isn't my main writing persona, I would like to at least keep it ticking over by releasing a minimum of one book a year. Looking ahead at my writing schedule, I'm not sure where I will fit it in but I will give it a darned good go.

3) Volunteer at a charity event


You'll be relieved to know I am hanging up my fundraising boots for a year to give everyone a break from my 'please sponsor me' posts. I have already chosen my charity for 2014 though, Mummy's Star, will assist them in any way that I am able. I would like to volunteer at another charity event during 2014 and if that is on behalf of Mummy's Star then all the better.



So there we have it!

Over to you, have you set any goals for 2014?
How did your 2013 go?



Related Posts


> Happy New Year for 2013
> I'm Throwing Myself Out of a Plane
> On Yer Bike, Aurelia
> New Contract Signed!
> Signed, sealed, but not quite delivered
> What is 'The Call'?
> Time for an update...
> New deal and changes afoot

Thursday, 19 December 2013

Twenty Questions with... Monica Garry-Allen plus GIVEAWAY

Today's blog post brings an end to the 2013 guest spots as I take a break next week for Christmas. It's hard to believe that a year passed since I started my Twenty Questions guest interviews but I hope you've enjoyed them. I already have many guests lined up for 2014, continuing in the now familiar Thursday slot, and kicking off on January 2nd.

So, for my final guest of 2013, I am delighted to welcome Monica Garry-Allen onto my blog, author of Christmas Confusion, recently released by Front Porch Romance. Monica also comes bearing a gift so remember to scroll all the way to the bottom to check out her giveaway.

ACT ONE – all about you…


Monica Garry-Allen has loved reading for as long as she can remember. As a child her mother always purchased books for her at her school’s book fair. Back then her favorite book was The Little Mermaid. Now days she reads and tells stories to her nieces and nephews during her weekend sleepovers. She loves kids, especially her wonderful nieces and nephews, but does not have any of her own yet.

Monica is a full time Clinical Laboratory Scientist. When she is not working in the lab she’s writing humorous love stories and steamy romances. She recently married the man of her dreams, Dempsey Allen, who motivates her to be the best writer she can be. She has a loving family who supports her one hundred percent and friends who can’t wait to read her next story. She resides in the southern part of Mississippi where she enjoys shopping, reading, writing and spending time with her family.

1) Have you always been a writer or is it something you fell into?

I’ve always been a writer, in my head. LOL. I work as a Clinical Laboratory Technician but I’ve always dreamed of being a writer.

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

I have a ritual... I love to write in complete silence. I have my own office and it bothers me a great deal when my hubby comes in and asks me anything.... especially stuff he already knows the answer to like, do you want something to eat; of course I want something to eat. LOL, just joking. But seriously I do need complete silence when I write. I take everything I need into my office with me so that I don’t have to leave out and do anything. The things I need are water, juice, a snack and a dictionary. J

3) Is there a book or an author that has influenced you in your writing? Or perhaps one piece of advice that has stuck with you that you’d like to share?

There are a few authors that influence my writing: Kresley Cole and Bertrice Small are a couple of them. My husband gives the best advice. He always tells me to never give up. He’s my biggest supporter.

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

1 - I got married in June of this year.

2 – I’m the youngest of 8 children.

3 – My favourite television show is, ‘The Walking Dead’. #TeamDaryl

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

1 – My laptop

2 – My cell phone

3 – My husband (LOL)

4 – Toothe paste

5- Soap

6) The festive season is looming large, do you have a particular Christmas tradition that you like to indulge in? Or how about New Year’s resolutions; will you be joining in the madness for 2014?

Christmas Traditions – When I was younger my mother always allowed me to open one gift at night. Now that I am grown, my husband and I still open one gift on Christmas eve.

My New Year’s resolution this time around is to learn how to cook.

ACT TWO – all about your new release…



Can two people be any more confused than Bailey and Max?
Bailey Cooper is very much attracted to her neighbor Max Davis. Unfortunately for Bailey, Greg – Max’s lover is slowly becoming one of Bailey’s best friends. Bailey’s emotions are torn; she adores Greg’s friendship while at the same time she craves Max’s touch. What is a girl to do when she ‘thinks’ the man she's in love with is in love with someone else?
Max Davis and his baby brother Greg Davis are co-owners of the apartment building they live in. Max has fallen for his tenant, Bailey, but she avoids and ignores all of his advances. Max becomes suspicious of the friendship blooming between Greg and Bailey. He believes she has a crush on his brother but Max wants her all to himself. Now he has to think of ways to keep Bailey and Greg apart.
Will a holiday weekend full of chaos, confusion and a little bit of charm finally get Bailey and Max on the right track? Or will a few innocent caresses lead to more Christmas confusion?
7) Congratulations on your recent release of Christmas Confusion; what was your inspiration for writing Max and Bailey’s story?

Bailey’s character came to me one night at work. I wanted to write a story of a young woman who was moving into her first apartment and finding herself falling in love for the first time. But life isn’t simple so I had to give her a few obstacles to overcome and she handles them all brilliantly.

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

This particular story was easy to write. The words seemed to just come to me.

9) 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?

It took me about three months to write this novella, Christmas Confusion. I submitted it to Front Porch Romance in April and received a contract a week later.

10) Do you have a favourite paragraph or sentence from your story that you would like to tantalise us with?
A blush crept up her neck as she reached her hand out to shake his. Max shook her hand, slowly massaging the top of her knuckle with his thumb. “Hi, Bailey,” he whispered, so only she could hear him.
“H-hi Max, how was your vacation?” she asked politely.
“Lonely,” he admitted.
She pulled back from his grip as if scorched. He’d felt it too, felt the way her pulse picked up as he held her hand. She could try to run, but he wasn’t letting her go, not this time; not without a fight.

11) Over to you, what can you tell us about Christmas Confusion to make us rush out and buy it?

Christmas Confusion is a sweet and funny romance. It’s all about the emotions you feel when you experience your firsts as an adult: first apartment, first love and first job.

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

Book two of Christmas Confusion is coming out in 2014, titled ‘Seducing Max’. Also in 2014 I will be releasing a Steamy Paranormal, ‘Her Dream Lover’, written under my pen name – Siren Allen.

QUICK FIRE ROUND – it’s pop quiz time…


13) Plotter or pantser?

Pantser

14) Digital books or print books?

Print

15) Tea or coffee?

Coffee

16) Extrovert or introvert?

Introvert

17) Facebook or Twitter?

Facebook

18) The Snowman or A Muppet Christmas Carol?

A Muppet Christmas Carol

19) Christmas pudding or Yule log?

Christmas pudding

20) Give or receive?

Give

And that’s a wrap!

Thank you so much for taking part, Monica, I wish you every success with your new release.

To discover even more about Monica Garry-Allen, and to keep up with her latest projects, you can visit her at:

Blog     Facebook     Twitter


Buy it now…


Add to Goodreads

Publisher: Front Porch Romance
Release date: 4 December 2013

Smashwords
ARe
Front Porch Romance
Amazon US / Amazon UK
Google Books


Giveaway…


It’s time for a giveaway. Add Christmas Confusion to your to read list then comment here letting me know that you’ve done so for a chance to win a copy of my Romantic Comedy, The Makeover.


Add to Goodreads
Amazon US / UK
Revenge is a dish best served cold… while wearing heels.

April has just learned the real reason behind her boss’ impromptu dinner invitation. He only invited her to dinner with his colleagues to prove a point: that he can show up at an event with a plain Jane and still be considered ‘the man’. She expected better from him and had secretly hoped that one day their friendship would grow into something deeper. But her two best friends won’t let her wallow in her pain. They convince her to give Dr. Stewart a dose of his own medicine. The plan: show up at the dinner looking irresistible and prove to her boss that even nerd girls can be sexy. But first she has to replace her unattractive business suits with something sexier and more revealing. It’s time for a makeover.

Dr. Chad Stewart would never ‘really’ date his secretary. She was too good, to pure for someone as jaded as himself. It didn’t matter that he was half in love with her. But when he needed an ‘average date’ for a dinner party she was the first person he turned to. He thought his secretary was the perfect choice until he arrived to find her looking like his wildest fantasy. But now she knows the real reason for his invite and he can see in her eyes how hurt she is.

Can Chad convince her to forgive him for hurting her or will she walk out of his life… taking his heart with her?


Wednesday, 18 December 2013

International Sale Alert

Calling my international followers...

A visit to Amazon this morning revealed that Popping The Cherry has had its price slashed to $1.99 - WOW! - but you'd better get in quick as I have no idea how long this sale price will last!


Popping the Cherry

"Popping the Cherry is a spine-tingly, sweet and hot, coming of age YA/NA romance...[it] is a crackingly-good read. Awesome in fact - on so many levels...Overall, I LOVED the characters. I LOVED the way the plot was developed and shaped. And I LOVED the ending." 5 fabulous fairies, Bex 'n' Books
"Popping the Cherry is a fantastic New Adult that kept me flipping the pages...[it] stole my heart for Lena and Jake's hilarious, heart-melting and crazy romance. I highly recommended Popping the Cherry for getting your forever love the first time." 5 stars - I Heart YA Books
"I am a big fan of Aurelia B Rowl. She writes soul-stirring tales that remain in your thoughts long after you are finished reading. POPPING THE CHERRY is a powerful and meaningful new adult story. This is by far the best book that I have read so far this year! This is a Romance Junkies Recommended Read." 5 ribbons - Romance Junkies

Thursday, 12 December 2013

Twenty questions with... J'aimee Brooker

I am delighted to welcome J'aimee Brooker, author of Rescued: A Festive Novella, onto my blog today.

Now I don't know about you, but whenever I think of Christmas I think of the cold, and I wonder whether it will snow, and I think of getting all wrapped up and cosy, ideally in front of a roaring fire. I freely admit that I cannot get my head around Christmas in Summer - I mean, poor Santa in all his thick red clothes, right? - but that is exactly what happens for many. It's weird...or just plain wrong if you ask me though ;-)

Maybe J'aimee can change my mind with a hot (in both senses of the word) Aussie Christmas read?

ACT ONE – all about you…


An avid bookworm and creative and commercial writer by trade, J’aimee is the author of contemporary romance novels and novellas focusing on romance, travel, and suspense.

A creative and commercial writer by trade; J’aimee also authors novellas and short stories focused within the contemporary romance genre and incorporating themes of travel, intrigue, and suspense.

J’aimee has written for industry trade publications and lifestyle magazines, and is a regular columnist for several lifestyle magazines and lifestyle/travel websites as well as having a full-time job in radio and three kids (under 9yrs).

1) Have you always been a writer or is it something you fell into?

I have always written in some capacity, at school I was very much driven by writing-based subjects, completing the highest level of English available (3-unit) in my senior years. From school I moved into radio advertising copywriting and features writing for commercial, trade and lifestyle publications before launching a glossy-lifestyle magazine of my own in 2009. Throughout this time, I'd always written: jotting down ideas and tidbits to use later, and playing around with poetry, fiction and non-fiction writing along the way. With 15 years of interviewing national and international celebs and personalities, hearing some incredibly juicy (often unpublished) stories, a wealth of writing experience and a practical understanding of the publishing process, it was a logical progression for me to move into self-publishing my fiction writing.

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

It's hard to explain my style and quite possibly it's not the 'right' way to approach writing/plotting etc. Basically, I have a filing cabinet full of folders. Each new idea gets a folder and every time I think of something new to add to a particular idea (perhaps its an idea, a news article, a piece of research etc) I jot it down/print it out and add it to that idea's file. I don't really choose what I'm writing next so much as the next idea presents itself. I'm never sure when, where or how I'll use the ideas but when inspiration strikes I generally take notice (and a plethora of notes!)

3) Is there a book or an author that has influenced you in your writing? Or perhaps one piece of advice that has stuck with you that you’d like to share?

Sidney Sheldon is hands-down my biggest influence with regard to writing style. The manner in which Sheldon weaved so many story arcs into one novel, all subsiding perfectly against one another is something I can only aspire to be able to achieve.

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

I have three children aged under ten.

I am currently working on gaining my Italian passport—we're planning (hoping) to live in Italy sometime in the future.

I learned to walk again at 22yo (while 6 months pregnant) after being hit by a car and having both legs broken (was 10 weeks pregnant at the time).

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

In order: iPhone, iPad, my Rimmel mascara, vanilla bean paste (I cook a lot), MacBook.

6) The festive season is looming large, do you have a particular Christmas tradition that you like to indulge in? Or how about New Year’s resolutions; will you be joining in the madness for 2014?

Christmas is a huge occasion in our home even though it's just the five of us.

Though our celebrations kick off very early in December (I love Chrissy!), Christmas Eve marks the start of our traditional celebrations. Christmas Eve begins with a three-course Italian feast (finished with my homemade Limoncello), the opening of one present for each of the kids (always a new pair of pyjamas so they wake up in new ones on Christmas morning), then we all watch a Christmas movie together before sending the kids off to bed and moving into our Christmas 'duties' of wrapping last minute pressies and putting them under the tree!

ACT TWO – all about your new release…



Two gorgeous girls
A knight in shining speedos
One red-hot Australian Christmas!
Set against the glorious backdrop of Australia’s iconic Bondi Beach comes the story of childhood friends Anya Thompson and Sophie Anders and their brush with one of Bondi’s finest—lifeguard Jack Covey.
As a lifeguard, Jack’s instincts are finely tuned. He’s spent his career watching for danger and avoiding distractions but when the gorgeous Anya Thompson catches his eye, he can’t help but be intrigued by Anya and her modest and reserved manner.
Anya’s lost more than her Christmas cheer, but will one steamy night with her best friend and the deliciously handsome Jack be just the thing to restart her shattered heart?

7) Congratulations on your recent release of Rescued; what was your inspiration for writing an Australian-style Christmas novella?

I've been longing for a northern hemisphere Christmas for quite some time and devour US/UK/Europe based Christmas novels at this time of the year. I imagined that the same is possibly true for those who dream of a hot, Aussie Christmas. So I thought I'd offer northern hemisphere readers the opportunity to melt their snow and heat up their Christmas TBR lists with a couple of hot Aussie lifeguards, the iconic Bondi Beach and some raunchy down-under romance!

The idea for Rescued came to me about 6-8 months ago. I'd been jotting down notes all year about how the story would progress, how the relationship between the three characters could plausibly develop, and what the outcome of a ménage between two friends and a devilishly handsome lifeguard would be. Essentially, living on the gorgeous east coast of Australia and witnessing firsthand the amazing job that lifeguards carry out was also a catalyst for Rescued.

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

I started writing notes for this story in about March this year, slowly adding to my ideas for story and characters as I went. It was a matter of pulling out the file I had on this particular idea which had over the months developed it's own story and character directions. I wrote this story quite quickly, it flowed easily. Editing wasn't quite as quick nor easy!

9) How long did it take for the initial spark of the story to make it onto the page and then into editing?

I began writing on a Friday afternoon and wrote through on almost no sleep until the Monday night. The story just kind of fell out and onto the computer and there was nothing I could do but keep writing until it was out. The finished manuscript then sat on my desk for two weeks before I began the re-reading and editing processes.

10) Do you have a favourite paragraph or sentence from your story that you would like to tantalise us with?
“Anya, Jack—is this ok?” Sophie started, before Jack reached for her and pulled her into a deep kiss. Anya knew the kiss, knew how it melted your insides, how it could stop the world from existing.
11) Over to you, what can you tell us about Rescued, to make us rush out and buy it?

Rescued is a fun, sexy, short read—the perfect way to spend an afternoon and get a hit of surf, sand, and the hot Aussie summer all in one!

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

2014 will see me release a series of novellas (all stand-alones); still in the romance genre but exploring an overall topic that is rather unique. I also have three novellas that I would love to see find a home with a digital publisher.

QUICK FIRE ROUND – it’s pop quiz time…


13) Plotter or pantser?

Oooh, bit of both depending on the story. Some are plotted and driven by a plan, others seem to just happen.

14) Digital books or print books?

Never thought I'd say this, but I've gone from buying print books every single week to having not bought one in over a year. I'm a digital reader all the way now.

15) Tea or coffee?

Tea

16) Extrovert or introvert?

Introvert.

17) Facebook or Twitter?

Twitter.

18) The Snowman or A Muppet Christmas Carol?

Muppets.

19) Christmas pudding or Yule log?

Yule log.

20) Give or receive?

Give.

And that’s a wrap!

Thank you so much for taking part, J'aimee, I wish you every success with your new release.

To discover even more about J'aimee Brooker, and to keep up with her latest projects and whether she ever gets her Italian passport, you can visit her at:

Website     Blog     Facebook     Twitter     Goodreads     Pinterest


Buy it now…


Add to Goodreads

ISBN: 9780987431592
Release date: 12th October 2013

Amazon UK / Amazon
iTunes
Barnes & Noble
Smashwords
Kobo (may not be visible to UK readers though)


Excerpt…


“He’s gorgeous” Sophie purred from behind her glasses, “don’t you think Anya?”

“Ah, yep, I guess so…”

“You guess so? Anya Thompson, you have to be kidding me—look at him, he is the ultimate specimen of man! Ooh, and look at the guy next to him… my gosh I’m glad we made this move! What I wouldn’t do to have them both at my beck and call…” she trailed off.

“Oh Soph, seriously, too much information” Anya sighed, rolling over to rest on her stomach giving her back a much needed slathering of the intensely warm sun rays but throwing a quick glance over her shoulder at the two lifeguards all the same. They were hot, but then again that was hardly a surprise, she hadn’t seen any that where less than Adonis-like since moving to Sydney.

“Right. Like you’ve never had a lifeguard fantasy Miss Goody-Two-Shoes?” she replied mockingly. “Oh, gosh, Anya they’re looking over here” she whispered before stilling completely.

“Big deal, some hot lifeguards are checking out girls on the beach. Now tell me something that should surprise me, Soph?”

“Oh, that’s nice don’t ya think Jack—this one thinks we’re hot” came a strong male voice from above her sending her into a frenzied scramble to kneel and cover herself.


Thursday, 5 December 2013

Twenty Questions with... Rebecca Raisin

I am delighted to welcome Rebecca Raisin onto my blog today, author of Christmas at the Gingerbread Café recently released by Carina (Harlequin UK).

Another week closer to Christmas, Rebecca has come all the way from sunny Australia to take a turn in the hotseat for my festive round of twenty questions...

ACT ONE – all about you…


Rebecca Raisin is a true bibliophile.

This love of books morphed into the desire to write them. She’s been widely published in various short story anthologies, and in fiction magazines, and is now focusing on writing romance. The only downfall about writing about gorgeous men who have brains as well as brawn, is falling in love with them – just as well they’re fictional. Rebecca aims to write characters you can see yourself being friends with. People with big hearts who care about relationships, and most importantly, believe in true, once in a lifetime love.


1) Have you always been a writer or is it something you fell into?

I’ve always loved reading, and dreamed of writing a book ‘one day’ so when another writer suggested I give it a go, I promptly fell in love with it, and haven’t looked back since.

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

I have a few different styles, depending of the genre. I have my sweet romance side and then my kooky pulpy fiction side, so I think I’m well covered to write the madness out of me. My only rituals involve chocolate and coffee, and I’m sure those calories don’t count because it’s part of the job.

3) Is there a book or an author that has influenced you in your writing? Or perhaps one piece of advice that has stuck with you that you’d like to share?

A writer friend told me when I began writing – Finish what you start. It’s great advice. It’s too easy to give up on a project when it stalls, but you have to push through those rough patches and keep going. I do have a few things on the go at any one time, but I always go back, and finish what I’ve started.

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

I’m a twin and have twins.

I wrote a special story for a family members wedding and the bride and groom later had sections of the story tattooed on their bodies. It still touches me to this day.

I’m addicted to Hemingway.


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

Make-up

My laptop

My iphone

Books, I buy them in bulk. I can’t stay away from bookshops.

Chocolate Lindt balls. Stupidly addictive.


6) The festive season is looming large, do you have a particular Christmas tradition that you like to indulge in? Or how about New Year’s resolutions; will you be joining in the madness for 2014?

I like making jars of preserves every year. Last year I made a cherry and star anise relish, and I use nice bottles and ribbons, and wrap them as gifts.

New Year’s resolutions for me are always the same. Quit everything fun, and exercise. Blah!



ACT TWO – all about your new release…


The icing on her Christmas cake!
Christmas is the season the Gingerbread Café was made for…but owner Lily couldn’t be feeling less merry if she tried. She’s spent another year dreaming of being whisked away on a sleigh-ride for two, but she’s facing festive season alone – again. And, just to give her another reason to feel anything other than candy-cane perky, a new shop across the road has opened… Not only is it selling baked goods, but the owner, with his seriously charming smile, has every girl in town swooning.
But Lily isn’t about to let her business crumble — the Gingerbread Café is the heart of the community, and she’s going to fight for it! This could be the Christmas that maybe, just maybe, all her dreams – even the someone-to-decorate-the-Christmas-tree-with ones – really do come true!

7) Congratulations on your recent release of Christmas at the Gingerbread Cafe what was your inspiration for writing Lil’s story?

I wanted to write a Christmas story, and incorporate all those lovely Christmas treats, so why not set the story in a café that specialises in Gingerbread recipes. Lil, my main character has had her heartbroken in the past, and still holds out hope that her ex-husband will come back. Until a new guy in town opens up a shop across the road. Sparks fly as they vie for customers in the small town…

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

The beginning flowed, but it needed a bit of coaxing towards the end. Like all my work!

9) I see Christmas at the Gingerbread Cafe 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?

It was quite fast, a month or so, plus a few weeks of editing, because it’s novella length, and Christmas themed. So I wrote it, polished it, and sent it in, and I had a phone call from Carina a few days later. They had specifically asked for Christmas stories, otherwise I think the process would take a lot longer. I actually signed two other book contracts before this one, however this one came out first, so it beat the other two to the punch!

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

This is the opening scene, which is a favourite of mine.

Amazing Grace blares out from the speakers above me, and I cry, not delicate, pretty tears, but great big heaves that will puff up my eyes, like a blowfish. That song touches me, always has, always will. With one hand jammed well and truly up the turkey’s behind I sing those mellifluous words as if I’m preaching to a choir. Careful, so my tears don’t swamp the damn bird, I grab another handful of aromatic stuffing. My secret recipe: a mix of pork sausage, pecans, cranberries and crumbled corn bread. Punchy flavors that will seep into the flesh and make your heart sing. The song reaches its crescendo, and my tears turn into a fully-fledged blubber-fest. The doorbell jangles and I realize I can’t wipe my face with my messy hands. Frantic, I try and compose myself as best I can.
“Jesus Mother o’ Mary, ain’t no customers comin’ in here with this kinda carry-on! It’s been two years since that damn fool left you. When you gonna move on, my sweet cherry blossom?”
CeeCee. My only employee at the Gingerbread Café, a big, round, southern black woman, who tells it like it is. Older than me by a couple of decades, more like a second mother than anything. Bless her heart.

11) Over to you, what can you tell us about Christmas at the Gingerbread Cafe to make us rush out and buy it?

It’s a feel good story that’ll get you in the mood for Christmas! There’s nothing more comforting that a mug of gingerbread coffee, so with that in mind, turn your Christmas lights on, play Amazing Grace softly in the background, and start reading! I hope you enjoy it if you do rush out and buy it J

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

I’m working on a novel set in New York, a romantic comedy, and I’m stupidly in love with one of the characters again. Why are all these men so lovely? And then… there’s some more news on the horizon, so I do hope to come back and share it with you soon.


QUICK FIRE ROUND – it’s pop quiz time…


13) Plotter or pantser?

Panster!

14) Digital books or print books?

Both!

15) Tea or coffee?

Coffee.

16) Extrovert or introvert?

Extrovert.

17) Facebook or Twitter?

Facebook.

18) The Snowman or A Muppet Christmas Carol?

Can I pick Home Alone? I love that movie at Christmas!

19) Christmas pudding or Yule log?

Yule log.

20) Give or receive?

Give!

And that’s a wrap!

Thank you so much for taking part, Rebecca, I wish you every success with your new release.

To discover even more about Rebecca Raisin, and to keep up with her latest projects and shenanigans, you can visit her at:

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ISBN: 9781472073785
Release Date: 12 November 2013

Monday, 2 December 2013

New deal and changes afoot...

Hey everybody,

I have been teasing you for days on the social networks with my 'Big News' but I have since put pen to paper and am delighted to reveal all.


Yes, it's champers time again because...

I have a new book deal!!


This weekend I have signed with Carina (Harlequin UK) for a further three book deal which means books three and four in my Popping the Cherry series are now under contract. Yay! I already have a rough plot sorted for book three and it is certainly going to be a challenge, and my first 'coming out' story if it all goes to plan for Nathan's story. Book four is less defined but I do have an idea forming, and this would then be Chloe's story, unless somebody gets their hooks in me between now and the end of book three.

SQUEEEEE!

All being well, book two will be out late Spring and then book three will be around late Autumn, with book four coming out early 2015.

Now unless you're terrible at maths, you will have already worked out that there is a book missing. Popping the Cherry books three and four only makes two and this is where the major changes come in... after much deliberation, I have terminated my book deal with Breathless Press in order to further my writing career with Carina.

So what does that mean?


First of all, it means that Christmas is Cancelled will be withdrawn from sale this summer and the entire series is no longer under contract. Scary stuff for a rookie writer. Fear not though, it is not the end of the road for my debut book - have you guessed yet? - Christmas is Cancelled is the third book in my latest Carina deal. The new and improved British (yay!) version will be back on sale for Christmas 2014. Sadly, that means you will have to wait a while longer for Phil's story - sorry - but I am hopeful that Carina will sign it under option on my next work of fiction.

And since I don't actually drink champagne...




Cheers!


PS. If you want to hear all the news first, you might want to come and join my other 'Anoraks' over on Goodreads :-)


Aurelia's "Anoraks"'s

Aurelia's "Anoraks" 25 members
Aurelia's "Anoraks" is a reader group for stories by Aurelia B. Rowl; to talk about her books, ge...

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Christmas is Cancelled
Christmas is Cancelled

by Aurelia B. Rowl

Start date: December 21, 2012


Popping the Cherry
Popping the Cherry

by Aurelia B. Rowl

Start date: September 19, 2013




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