Thursday, 22 January 2015

The long, but fun filled road to publication.

A year ago this week, I had a wonderful dream-come-true moment. The Call. Finally after seven years of writing and many ups and downs, I had achieved my ambition of publication. I'd known I wanted to be a writer since I was about nine years old, but only seriously began pursuing that dream eight years ago.

So what set me off on that path of determined persistence?

Thirteen years ago, I saw an advert in my village for a new writing group and as my children were young then the meeting time of Monday afternoons was perfect. So along I went to that very first meeting, and met Brenda Old, the founder member of what is now known as Cwrtnewydd Scribblers.

I soon began to write short stories, which I loved doing, but I kept wishing I could write a book, to get from the very first page to the last. It seemed perfectly natural to want to write romance as my favourite reading since my teenage years, was Mills and Boon.

 Occasionally, we had guest writers at our Monday afternoon meetings, but the day Liz Fielding joined us, set in motion a chain of events which not only focused me on my dream of writing a book, but helped me achieve it. Liz brought with her a book and that was, Kate Walker’s 12 Point Guide to Writing Romance.

I went home and set myself the target of completing my first book by that time the following year. But before I began I sat down and devoured The 12 Point Guide. Imagine my excitement when I read about courses Kate Walker ran for Writers’ Holiday in Fishguard, which was only a short drive away. One phone call later, I was booked up – and with the course being just a matter of weeks away, I began my very first attempt at writing for Mills and Boon.

The Watermill at Posara
The next few years passed in a whirl of manuscripts submitted both to Mills and Boon and RNA’s New Writers’ Scheme. I also attended Kate Walkers course each year and discovered the amazing Watermill in Tuscany where Sharon Kendrick teaches romance writing each May. Through these courses and conferences, I’ve made wonderful friends, travelled and learnt so much, but above all, had an amazing time!

I am also very fortunate to have met up with a wonderful group of writers online, known as The Write Romantics. Together we have formed a very supportive group and my success is only a small part of the success of the group as a whole. Not only have The Write Romantics got lots of debuts to look forward to this year, but they produced a brilliant charity anthology, Winter Tales – which is still available, by the way!

Things began to change in September 2013, when I entered my story into So You Think You Can Write and that entry took me to the Top Ten and finally to being offered a two-book contract, the second of which, Claimed by The Sheikh, is out now.

One year on from that fantastic moment, I now have three fabulous book covers. My fourth book has just been accepted and will be available later this year. Currently, I am working on my fifth book – and enjoying every minute. I hope you will enjoy reading my books!

This was made for me by Amanda Shivratten - thanks Amanda!

Saturday, 17 January 2015

Blogging on...

This week, I'm talking about my second book, Claimed by the Sheikh, on I Heart Presents. This is a blog I've followed for a long time and dreamed of one day appearing on. In fact, I'm still pinching myself!
So to find out the inspiration behind Kazim and Amber's story, head on over to I Heart Presents!