Happy Galentine’s Day!

Yup, you read that correctly.

As well as celebrating Valentine’s Day this week, I’ll be celebrating Galentine’s Day. Originally created to celebrate female friendships, I’ll be using the day to thank my friends who stand by me, support me, and loving me no matter what.

Everyone has challenges in their lives, and having people around you who love you, take care of you, and stand by you whatever you go through is absolutely vital. I know that I have some wonderful friends and family who I completely rely on.

And yes, I’ve written a Valentine’s book (which you can grab here) but instead of curling up with a good book, why not treat someone else to it as a paperback?

This Galentine’s Day, reach out to a friend that you’ve lost track of. Tell someone you love how much they mean to you. Surprise a friend with a small gift. Just make it count, whatever you do.

Release Day: ‘Peril with a Prince’

I’m thrilled to say that my latest Regency romance, Peril with a Prince, has been released!

perilwiththeprince

A prince hiding his identity, and a woman hiding hers – and sparks will fly when they have only each other to rely on…

Prince Éduard of Aviroux is hunting down the Great Whisperer, the spy helping the French nobility escape the guillotine, and he’s so close when thwarted by the delectable Giselle.

In all his years, he has never seen a woman like her: resourceful, cunning, and ready for a fight. What he doesn’t realise is that she’s just the spy he’s looking for.

Now trapped on an island together with food running out fast, Giselle is attracting his notice for all the wrong reasons, and it surely won’t be long before secrets, as well as clothes, start to fly.

Will Éduard discover Giselle’s terrible secret – or will he reveal some of his own? And can a perilous time with a prince ever lead to something more than just the heady delights of the flesh?

This is the prequel of the Ravishing Regencies.

This is a steamy Regency romance with a happily ever after, no cliffhangers, and part of a series that can be read in any order.

My ‘keep writing’ secret

One of the questions that I’m frequently asked as an author is: “Where do you get all of your inspiration from?”

And you know what? Sometimes that is a really difficult question to answer.

Don’t get me wrong, I am one of those people who drives their spouse insane by waking up in the middle of the night with a fantastic idea and having to get their phone open, dazzling screen ablazing, to write it down in ‘Notes’ – only to wake up the next morning to see:

andt he gloves not white but henot care

(An actual transcription from my ‘brilliant 3am ideas’ notes.)

I am also one of those authors who has, at the time of writing:

  • a twelve book series plotted out
  • a four book series plotted out
  • another twelve book series with the first three written
  • a five book series plotted out
  • and an eight book series with the covers designed, but no plots at all.

And you know what? I still have moments at my keyboard where I have no idea where my characters are going.

It can be frustrating, especially when (as I do), you are an author that works full time at another job. Carving out writing time is a real challenge, and I don’t even have the excuse of having children!

So when it comes to writing, I just want to sit down and go: no distractions, no hesitations.

When that doesn’t happen it can be overwhelmingly frustrating – but I am going to share with you my secret for how I am able to keep going.

tk

Yup, you read that right: tk. The letters ‘t’ and ‘k’ appear together very rarely in the English language, so if you decide to search ‘tk’ in your manuscript then you aren’t going to find many, unless you have a lot of pocketknives in your book.

So whenever I get to a sticking point and I know that it’ll frustrate me and distract me from the narrative, I just stick in tk and then move on.

Can’t think what the name of that piece of Regency clothing is? tk

Need an extra name for a character that is literally only in this scene? tk

Want to check whether that town is a real place, or I need to create one? tk

It may sound weird, but it’s a real simple way for me to keep with the flow of my writing. Then when I come to the end of my creative time, which usually doesn’t reach lunch (I’m definitely a morning bird!), I just stick ‘tk’ into the search, and the places that I need to go back to appear.

I never miss them. My manuscript is always better because of them, because I can then take my time to investigate clothing, find the perfect name, and research eighteenth century geography, without losing precious creating writing time.

So there you have it. YES I have tonnes of ideas. YES I have book ideas coming out of my ears. And YES sometimes my brain grinds to a halt and I have to use clever tricks to keep going.

Happy writing!

Read Marooned with a Marquis Now!

I am so incredibly excited to reveal that my latest book, Marooned with a Marquisis now live on Amazon for you to read and enjoy! And what’s more…it’s my birthday!

currently funding on

Yup, that’s right, twenty one again! Hahaha, seriously though, this is such an exciting moment for me because this is the book that so many of my reviewers and Beta Team have really fallen in love with. I mean, check out some of the reviews currently on Amazon!

Well written, charming characters and lovely location. Love everything of Emily’s that I have read!

— K Sazabo

 

I love that all the books in this series feature unique, intelligent and sassy heroines and lots of heat!

— Colorado Cowgirl

 

Emily, oh how your mind works! What an amazing love story. Adena and Luke are wonderful characters; causing me to thoroughly enjoy my time spent with them. What a cozy read for a very cold, windy night. Actually, under an umbrella on a warm beach. Anytime!

— Linda

 

I’ve made sure that Marooned with a Marquis is 0.99 for my loyal readers for just a week, so make sure that you grab it now and celebrate my birthday with me!

Drama in romance land

Just in case you thought that us romance authors created all of the drama, tension, and dramatic showdowns for our novels out of nowhere, 2019 has started with a bang within the romance community as one of our members makes some pretty wild statements that have offended…well, thousands of people.

I’m never one to get involved in the drama directly, but I thought that it was important for my loyal readers (that’s you) to know where I stand on this particular debate.

So let’s dive in.

What happened?

Someone who I am not going to name (remember, I don’t want to get involved!) posted on Facebook about a very contentious and emotional issue: weight. The person is a male cover model for almost 1000 romance book, particularly historical romance which is what I write, and he is very well known in our circles. What he posted wasn’t very nice.

What did it say?

I’m not going to repeat it or post to it: suffice to say that it shamed people for being overweight, blamed them entirely for it, and used words such as ‘disgusting’ when describing them. This, as you can imagine, did not go down well.

Why did he do it?

Sorry, I have no idea. He’s very into his own fitness, which is fine, but I don’t know why he chose to attack a type of person, especially as he doesn’t seem to have a lot of compassion or understanding about why someone may not be in ‘perfect’ shape…whatever that is…

The reaction has been pretty bad, then?

Yup. At the time of writing, he has almost a thousand comments on that post – some of them supportive, but the vast majority questioning why he is even getting so personal and so negative about people that he doesn’t know. Many authors have shared the post to alert to their author friends AND publishers that this is the guy’s feelings, and hundreds have sworn not only that they will never use him again as a cover model, but also that they will have any covers that do include him re-made without him. Some people are suggesting that for this guy, he has just signed and sealed the end of his career in the cover model industry.

Why does this matter?

I am not overweight so I didn’t feel personally attacked by this man’s post – but you know what? That doesn’t matter! I don’t think it has to be a personal attack for you to feel that a way of speaking to someone is wrong. There are so many journeys of life out there that it’s impossible to know or understand them all, and to attack someone for the way that they look, or how much they weigh, with a blanket judgement that doesn’t take into account – oh, I don’t know, accidents, physical health challenges, mental health, pregnancy, depression, thyroid issues, menopause (I could go on) – is just plain stupid.

What’s more, many readers of romance, and historical romance are women, and I firmly believe that we get enough negativity about the way that we look, no matter WHAT the numbers on the scales. We’re too fat, too thin, eating too much of that and not enough of that, and the thin ones still have cellulite, and the fat ones don’t take care of themselves, and why didn’t you buy that make up or use that type of shampoo, and it is ENDLESS.

I am grateful to my husband, family, friends, and readers for loving me as I am. Not everyone is that lucky, and posts like this man’s could really hurt and affect someone.

Blimey. It all sounds very intense. 

It is. But in many ways, it isn’t. He was no friend of mine to begin with, so I haven’t lost that; none of my covers feature him (I’ve checked!); and none will in the future.

Please do not let him be a representative of the romance community: all the romance authors I know love their readers, however they come. As a community, we will move on from this, and we’ll keep writing amazing books.

And if you see some of this drama, you’ll know where I stand: on your side.

Happy New Year to all my readers!

After taking just over a week off over the Christmas and New Year break, I can confirm that it was absolutely worth it.

Yes, there were moments when I felt guilty walking in the winter gloom enjoying the stillness and the silence of the woodland; watching cheesy Christmas films; laughing around the table late in the night over cheese and chocolate.

But you know what? I still feel better.

I feel refreshed, revitalised, and ready to get cracking with some fabulous new books in the New Year.

marquisMarooned with a Marquis is on pre-order right now at a special price of 0.99 so that you, my loyal readers, can grab it for an absolute bargain! I absolutely loved writing this book, and it’s been difficult waiting so long for 2019 for you to read it.

The fifth book in the series, Voyage with a Viscount, is also out for pre-order, and there will be three other books in my Ravishing Regencies series published in 2019. It’s going to be such an exciting year – and I hope you’ll join me for all of it.

I hope that you have a wonderful New Year’s celebrations, and I’ll see you in 2019!

 

Happy Christmas!

It’s that time of year again – when authors decide to snuggle up with their families, and readers fill up their new ereaders or Kindles with the best bargains!

Happy Christmas!

This is a short blog today as I’m just finishing off the final bits of a new novel (all to be revealed in 2019!) and getting everything ready for Christmas with some of my nearest and dearest.

I hope you have a wonderful Christmas, and New Year, and that you enjoy time with your loved ones. And if you’re looking for a bargain book to add to your collection, my January 2019 release is currently on 0.99 pre-order, so grab it now!

marquis

Writing a bestseller when sick

My loyal readers will groan when they hear that once again, I’m sick!

I’m known for being very susceptible to colds and this is my third, and worst, of the winter season so far. Along with the bunged up nose, slight earache, and dry throat, I’ve also just come out of a 3 day migraine.

Not ideal when you’re trying to write your next bestseller.

One of the challenges of taking your writing seriously as an author is that when you get sick, everything stops. I had a clear schedule for the book that I’m writing right now, and according to it Chapter 16 should be finished tomorrow.

Trouble is, Chapter 10 hasn’t even been started.

Now, there are two schools of thought when it comes to writing when sick or uninspiring:

  1. Write anyway darnit, it’s your job and you should treat it like that! Push through the pain, grab a box of tissues, and let’s DO THIS!
  2. Don’t bother. You’ll only write something terrible that you’ll have to scrap anyway, so dose up on Vitamin C, grab a box of tissues, and let’s RECOVER!

Now normally I fall into camp 1, but the last few days have just been awful – and I mean crying in the dark, praying that the migraine leaves me alone, awful.

I have barely been able to look at a screen, let alone write fantastic fiction.

So apologies to my lovely readers, but this cold has got me beat. I’m going to sign off now, and hopefully next week’s blog will find me in better health!

The medieval romance novel I thought I’d never write

If you’re looking for a medieval romance novel you’re expecting knights in shining armour, jousting, and at least three feasts. Right?

Well, that’s what I always thought. I’d loved medieval history, literature, architecture, art, music – the works – since before I can remember. I studied it at university first as an undergraduate and then as a postgraduate, and when I starting writing my first ever novel, it was a medieval romance novel.

And yet after the first book was published (which is Conquests, by the way) I realised that I wanted to tell a different story. Because as much as the medieval era was beautiful, and full of mystery and joy, it was also really brutal.

No, really, brutal. People loved and lost more than they lived. Children died young, parents died young, and illness was suffered at every point of life.

So I decided that my next medieval romance novel was going to show a little more of a grittier side of the medieval period. There was going to be kidnapping and betrayal, sickness, and trust and confusion, and pillaging, and more.

And you know what? It was still full of love, and romance. Because that’s what life is. No matter what people and life throws at you, there’s always the opportunity to find warmth and love.

That’s what I wrote. And you can read it here. 

 

(ps. my latest Regency romance is on pre-order! You should totally grab it now.)

medieval romance novels

My favourite medieval romance novels

As well as being an author, I am of course a reader! There are so many incredible medieval romance novels out there and there is no better time than to start exploring this fascinating and romantic period of history than right now.

Whether you’ve read these before and want to relive them, or you’re about to dive into medieval romance novels for the first time, let me know your thoughts in the comments below! (And if you want to read them, just click on the cover image.)

 The Greatest Knight by Elizabeth Chadwick

This was one of the very first medieval romance novels that I ever read, and it’s not too much of a stretch of the imagination to say that this book is one of the reasons that I became an author in the first place! I loved delving into one person’s life, covering not just years but decades, and it was made all the more incredible by the fact that this was a real person that actually lived. It is why I have always included real historical personalities in my medieval romance saga.

 The Thief’s Countess by Cecelia Mecca

There has to be a book from Cecelia Mecca on any list of best medieval romances – not just because she writes of a fascinating part of history, and her stories are well blended with historical accuracy and searing passion, but also because she’s one of my author friends! The border between England and Scotland was contested and fought over for centuries, and this series follows some of the families and characters who made it their battleground – and their bedroom!

Queen Hereafter by Susan Fraser King

One of my favourite historical characters is actually one that you rarely hear about, let alone read about: Margaret of Scotland. Born into the last Anglo-Saxon royal family, her brother Edgar was never able to successfully claim the throne from William the Conqueror, and that’s all most people know. But Margaret was determined to be someone, and you know what? As with all determined women, she made it. This glorious book follows her life in a thrilling way, and I highly recommend it.

So Speaks the Heart by Johanna Lindsey

If you discovered medieval romance novels in the 1980s and 1990s, then it’s likely that you’ve already read a fair bit of Johanna Lindsey! Her wide sweeping sagas were written in a very similar style, packed full of castles, forests, betrayal, and of course, rather sexy noblemen just waiting to carry off the heroines. In our post-#MeToo world some of these scenes may be a little triggering for some people, but if you like a little roughness with your hero, then this is the book for you.

The Merlin Trilogy by Mary Stewart

Another favourite from my teenage years, the original trilogy follows the Arthurian legend from Merlin’s perspective, a completely unique approach that has made Mary Stewart an absolute legend. She eventually added two books to the series, making this boxset on that you can lose yourself in for weeks on end, as you will be forced to read and re-read it to spot the clues that she leaves in earlier books…

Falling for the Highlander by Emma Prince

Another one of my author friends! If you like a little time travel mixed with your medieval romance novels then this is the one for you. Emma joined up with two other medieval romance authors to create a trilogy based on a trio of modern day sisters who fall through time – and the highlanders that they meet, fight against, and of course, fall in love with in the fourteenth century. Each book can be read on its own, or you can read all three to get a wonderful insight into the Sutton sisters.

The Conquered Hearts Series by…me!

No list of great medieval romance novels could possibly be complete without my own! I know that sounds a little selfish, but I am genuinely proud of the first series that I wrote, and even though I’m now publishing my fourth series, this one has a very special place in my heart. It follows two women, a mother and a daughter, just after the Norman Conquest and includes kidnapping, marriage of convenience, and betrayal across two countries.

Read them all on an Amazon Fire Kindle!

I love paperbacks, but sometimes the convenience of a Kindle is just too much to ignore – and this one can be packed with loads of useful apps, and even has Alexa integrated inside it. We may not have servants today like medieval noblemen did, but wouldn’t want to have their own servant now? Click on the image to treat yourself to your own Fire (go on, you know you deserve it!).