I have Patreon!

One of the hardest things about being a writer is that you have to do much of it alone.

Now, that doesn’t mean that I don’t have some amazing author friends. They encourage me support me, and laugh with me when things go terribly wrong! But most of them live hundreds, if not thousands of miles away from me.

I also have my amazing readers! They get to see a huge amount of me, by reading my books, but I don’t get to chat with them so much.

When you combine that with my dream to spend a bit more time writing, it totally makes sense to create a Patreon.

A Patreon is where people who want to support a person’s creativiity can commit to a certain amount of money a month, usually around $5-10, to encourage them and get cool rewards, bonus content, and behind the scenes.

Now I have one. You can check out my Patreon and see what sort of awesome benefits you can get by supporting me. Of course, you don’t have to, you can always get my books from Amazon.

But if you’d like to see a little more of me, and know you’re supporting me writing more books, then check it out!

Grab this Christmas boxset!

I ADORE Christmas. Honestly, I’ve been counting down for weeks until I could reveal this information, and I am so thrilled to now say that I am part of a Dragonblade Publishing Christmas boxset!

Enjoy this stunning holiday collection from some of your favorite Dragonblade Publishing authors in this collection of never-before published seasonal tales!

Amazon – https://bit.ly/DB-ONightDivine-Amazon

Nook – https://bit.ly/DB-ONightDivine-Nook

Kobo – https://bit.ly/DB-ONightDivine-Kobo

Apple – https://bit.ly/DB-ONightDivine-Apple

Imagine, if you will, that it is Christmas Eve.

The candles are guttered, one by one, and a hush falls over the parlor. The children have gone to bed, and a tall, gloriously decorated Christmas tree looms in the shadows of the hearth’s dying embers. A tattered copy of Charles Dickens’ masterwork, “A Christmas Carol” sits, cold and lonely, upon a table nearby.

A small gust of wind, hurling from the seam of an ill-fitting window, blows the cover open. The first chapter appears… “Marley’s Ghost”…

The clock on the wall chimes midnight.

Now, the magic happens.

From the gaily bedecked halls of Regency England to the cold and crisp air of the Scottish Highlands, and everything in between, enjoy the magic of a holiday collection that has drawn inspiration from Charles Dickens’ most beloved literary works. Where the ghosts of Christmas, the incandescent spirit of a tiny disabled boy, and the joy that is the very heart of the Christmas season come alive.

USA Today and Internationally bestselling authors bring you their version of a Dickens’-inspired holiday in O NIGHT DIVINE.

This collection includes:
Kathryn Le Veque
Caroline Lee
Chasity Bowlin
Collette Cameron
Hildie McQueen
Maggi Andersen
Mary Lancaster
Meara Platt
Violetta Rand
Alexa Aston
Anna Markland
Anna St. Claire
Aubrey Wynne
Charlotte Wren
Elizabeth Ellen Carter
Elizabeth Johns
Elizabeth Keysian
Emily E K Murdoch
Emily Royal
Gabrielle Carr
Lynne Connolly
Maeve Greyson
Whitney Blake

From Dragonblade to you, we wish you a very happy holiday season!

What makes the best writing room?

As many of you who are subscribed to my newsletter know, I moved just before the pandemic and that means that I’ve only just got my writing room into the order that I wanted!

I recently shared – for the first time – a sneak peek into the place that I write my bestselling historical romances, on the Dragonblade Publishing Readers Group. You can watch the video by clicking here.

So what makes the perfect writing room? Here at eh three things that I need to be able to write:

  1. Natural light! Without natural light, I find it impossible to concentrate for more than twenty minutes – which makes writing in the winter really challenging! I’ve got a lovely window right by my desk.
  2. Inspiration! I have a bunch of things in my study that inspire me. From my five bookcases full of my favourite books (though not all the books in my house!), I also have flowers, photos of my family and friends, an antique dagger, and a glass skull called Leonard…
  3. Snacks! Okay, perhaps not a difficult thing to get set up, but when I am finding a chapter really challenging to write, then I use food and delicious drinks to motivate myself.

So that’s my perfect study! Have I missed soemthing off your list?

Do you know the secret language of flowers?

What is your favourite flower?

I have loads of favourites. My grandparents were horticulturalists with their own nursery, with my Mum working for them, and so I was surrounded by flowers and plants growing up. I love them. I love nature!

(I wish I was better at keeping them alive, but…)

But my love of flowers isn’t limited to my childhood. My boyfriend (now husband!) immediately understood my obsession with flowers, and has treated me with flowers throughout our dating life, engagement, and marriage.

In fact, one of my favourite flowers is the purple/blue orchid, the first flowers he ever treated me with.

Flowers have been used in courting for years, and the Victorian era solidified our ideas of the language of flowers, which existed as early as the Regency period.

This secret code was designed to make sure that other people couldn’t immediately tell what you wanted to say to your beloved.

So did you know what a gentleman caller would be saying to you if they sent you…

…a mimosa? This delicate plant meant ‘chastity’, because of the way its petals close up when touched.

…a dark pink rose? This gorgeous blossom means ‘thankfullness’.

…a sprig of heath lavender? I love this scent, and when given as a gift, it means ‘admiration’.

…an orange lily? Run a mile if you receive this one – it secretly means ‘hatred’!

…a sweet pea posy? My absolute favourite flower, this heavily scented flower means ‘blissful pleasure’ or ‘goodbye’!

Did any of these surprise you? What is your favourite flower – let me know in the comments, and I will tell you what it means!

‘Always the Wallflower’ is out!

Can you believe it? Always the Wallflower is now out! This is the fifth book of my Never the Bride series, and I’m so thrilled that so many of you are loving it!

Make sure you grab this gorgeous Regency romance and let me know what you think!

Always the wallflower and never the bride – imprisoned by fear to watch life at the sidelines…

Lady Letitia Cavendish is a Cavendish, but only a cousin of the current Duke so even her name isn’t enough for potential suitors to court her. She’s a wallflower, terrified of putting herself forward, and so life continues on without her.
But at two and twenty, things are getting desperate.

The most confident rake in town, Edward Wynn, is a handsome devil – and being the Viscount of Stulsemere doesn’t hurt. When, despite his best efforts, he’s partnered with the most boring lady at Almack’s, he resigns himself to twenty minutes of silence.

And is astonished. Lady Letitia is nothing like what he expected, and after she storms off and leaves him standing, Edward has to know more.

He’s determined to understand her. She’s torn between remaining invisible and finally making a good match. Personalities collide and compromise seems out of reach as the unexpected happens.

What will society say as the biggest rake courts the wallflower of the season? Can Letitia ever take a step towards a happily ever after?

Do your friends read your books?

Everyone has a hobby. For some people, it’s a sport: swimming, rugby, tennis. For others, it’s something that is more personal: gaming, or learning a language.

And then for others, it’s creative: knitting, crafting, music, or writing.

I have wanted to be a writer for as long as I can remember. My parents even found some of my earliest school reports from when I was around six years old, and even then I’m ignoring what I should do at school and writing stories instead!

I have always found writing a wonderful escape, and a way to explore different worlds.

Many people actively encourage their friends in their hobbies, either turning up to matches, or praising their creations.

But what has been really strange is that since I have become a published author, it’s been a bit strange seeing whether my friends want to read my books or not.

Obviously none of my friends should be forced to do it! I would hate for my friends to feel like they were obliged to read my books, but at the same time…

I pour so much of myself into my books. Writing is my passion, it’s what I spend – well, almost all my time doing! It’s such a huge part of my life, and so sometimes it is odd that you cannot understand a part of me without reading my books.

What about you? Do you encourage your friends to read the books you love, or get involved in your hobbies?

Medieval romance vs Regency romance

Okay, here we go: it’s time to decide which is the best, medieval romance or Regency romance.

Let me just be upfront right now and say that I have written romances in both the medieval era and the Regency era. I love reading books based in both of those eras, and a few in and around that!

But they are incredibly different…

Medieval romances

Usually set more in the Highlands of Scotland, medieval romances have a lot of clan or tribe rebellions, far more kings and queens, and some incredible clothing descriptions.

I love medieval romances partly because that is what my Masters was in (Medieval Studies), and I think there is so much we don’t know about the medieval era because it’s not really taught in schools that much. I learn so much about the medieval era whenever I read romances set here!

Regency romances

Probably the most popular type of romances on Amazon right now, these are books set around the same time as Jane Austen’s romances. Instead of clans, it’s card games and balls, with plenty of gossip and scandalous rumours!

I love Regency romances because of the hierarchies, the desperate need for so many ladies to marry, and how quickly a reputation could be utterly destroyed. The Regency era is so wonderful to be swept up in and it’s easy to imagine it – though perhaps that’s because I live just down the round from Bath, England!

So, which is the winner?

…don’t hate me – I can’t pick! I love romances set in the medieval era, and the Regency era. They have so much to offer, and if I didn’t read one, I would miss it so much.

What about you? Do you have a favourite – or perhaps a different time period? Let me know in the comments below!

What makes the best historical romance?

I have read and loved historical romances for…well, almost my entire life! So many of my readers share with me what they are looking for in a historical romance, and I wanted to share some of my favourites.

  1. Titles! Readers love titles – Earls, Dukes, and Princes all round, please!
  2. Friends to lovers. There’s nothing like a good friends to love story – I’ve even written a few myself.
  3. Enemies to lovers. This is probably my favourite type of historical romance, especially if it’s warring clans or families!
  4. A misunderstanding. If there isn’t a misunderstanding, is it even a historical romance?!
  5. Letters, particularly letters from mothers to daughters – so cute!
  6. Obviously, a period of history that is just wonderful. My favourites are medieval and Regency.
  7. Gifts. I love gifts in historical romance, and when it’s jewellery, it’s even cuter.
  8. And last but by no means least…epilogues! I love seeing what happens to the characters after they have found true love.

Have I missed something that you love from historical romances? Tell me in the comments!

‘Always the Best Friend’ is out!

I am so excited to announce that Always the Best Friend is now out! This is the fourth book of my Never the Bride series, and the 5* reviews are pouring in!

Make sure you grab this gorgeous Regency romance and let me know what you think!

Always the best friend and never the bride – it was a trap she never saw coming…

Book 4 in the Never the Bride series is now available. Read for FREE in Kindle Unlimited!

Lady Harriet Stanhope grew up with her twin brother and his friends, never questioning their laughter or their games – but now she’s a young lady, she’s desperate for one friend in particular to see her in a different light.

But after twenty years of knowing each other, she’s just the best friend, not a serious contender for the Duke of Devonshire’s heart.

Montague Cavendish knows what is due to him and his family name, and he is not fool enough to wish for a love match. He’ll find a pretty young thing with plenty of money, and that will be that.

Until Harriet – Harriet – breaks into his rooms to seduce him. He should resist her, he knows he should. But Montague had never imagined such perfection lay beneath the gown of his best friend.

He’s determined to resist. She’s sure that he will fall in love with her after one night of passion.

Mistakes will be made and confusion abound as friendship is put to the ultimate test.

Is it possible for two people raised as siblings to become lovers – and if it all goes wrong, what will be left of their friendship?

Writing historical romance during #BlackLivesMatter

I don’t want this blog to be long. I’m a definite benefactor of white privilege, and I want to encourage you read more authors of colour. So instead of me talking about how #BlackLivesMatter, let’s all do something. Let’s support historical romance authors of colour, who write INCREDIBLE historical romance!

THE COST OF LOVE BOXED SET: by G. S. Carr

Carr’s attention to emotional detail, be it the caustic dialogue of the antagonists or the tender interactions between the lovers, is certain to resonate with readers. ~BookLife Prize Judge

This well-told historical romance is intense and powerful. ~Publishers Weekly Reviewer

This is an outstanding historical novel. Don’t miss out. Ms Carr, thank you for sharing your story with us. This is a must read to the end. ~ 5 star Amazon review, The Cost of Hope

I read the 3 books in the series and they were fantastic. ~ 5 star Amazon review

This boxed set contains the first 3 books in the Cost of Love series!

BEAUTY AND THE HIGHLANDER: by Hildie McQueen

Laird’s son Carrick Gordon is scarred for life and expects his betroth’s rejection, so he prepares for it by putting up a solid wall. When Analise Macgregor sees her husband to be, she is enthralled by the quiet man who wants nothing to do with her. How will they ever come together and find happiness?

Will Carrick and Analise get past preconceived perceptions to finally admit their mutual attraction?

Carrick Gordon gave his word and now he will marry a lass he’s never met. After lying with her long enough to procure an heir, he will release her from the marriage bed. She won’t fight it. Carrick is certain one look at his marred face and she’ll recoil in horror.

It had to be a cruel joke. Analise Macgregor cannot believe the handsome man is to be her husband. That he rejects her after a wonderful night is hurtful, but not surprising once she sees how Carrick keeps everyone at a distance.

AN EXTRAORDINARY UNION: by Alyssa Cole

Elle Burns is a former slave with a passion for justice and an eidetic memory. Trading in her life of freedom in Massachusetts, she returns to the indignity of slavery in the South—to spy for the Union Army.

Malcolm McCall is a detective for Pinkerton’s Secret Service. Subterfuge is his calling, but he’s facing his deadliest mission yet—risking his life to infiltrate a Rebel enclave in Virginia.

Two undercover agents who share a common cause—and an undeniable attraction—Malcolm and Elle join forces when they discover a plot that could turn the tide of the war in the Confederacy’s favor. Caught in a tightening web of wartime intrigue, and fighting a fiery and forbidden love, Malcolm and Elle must make their boldest move to preserve the Union at any cost—even if it means losing each other . . .

THE BITTERSWEET BRIDE: by Vanessa Riley

Widow Theodosia Cecil needs a husband to help protect her son. The former flower seller turned estate owner posts an ad in the newspaper, and no one is more surprised than she when her first love, the man she thought dead, reappears.

Ewan Fitzwilliam has been at war for six years. Now, the second son of a powerful earl is back but his beloved Theo needs a husband and will not consider him. She believes Ewan left her—in desperate straits—so she denies the feelings she still harbors for the handsome, scarred soldier. Theo and playwright Ewan must overcome bitter lies and vengeful actions that ruined their youthful affair. Theo must reveal her deepest secret in order to reclaim the love that has long been denied.

WHAT A COURTESAN WANTS: by Victoria Vale

Lady Lucinda Bowery has decided to cast off mourning attire and begin moving on from the loss of her husband. Hiring the gentleman courtesan known as an experienced dominant seems like just the thing to propel her out of bereavement and back to life. She intends for him to give her pleasure, and perhaps help her find a bit of the woman she was before being widowed.

Aubrey Drake became a courtesan to help bolster his expanding business, as well as provide a trousseau and dowry for his ward. Over time he has grown bored catering to women who only see him as an exotic offering to be enjoyed temporarily and then discarded. Thus, the thrill of mastering a submissive bedmate has lost its luster, leaving him cold. When Lady Bowery is suggested as his new keeper, he expects to be as apathetic toward her as all the others. But, when sparks fly at their first meeting, Aubrey becomes determined to master Lucinda in every way possible—even though she seems intent on keeping him at arm’s length.

REBEL: by Beverly Jenkins

Valinda Lacy’s mission in the steamy heart of New Orleans is to help the newly emancipated community survive and flourish. But soon she discovers that here, freedom can also mean danger. When thugs destroy the school she has set up and then target her, Valinda runs for her life—and straight into the arms of Captain Drake LeVeq.

As an architect from an old New Orleans family, Drake has a deeply personal