A Writer’s Year – Are you out there, Charles Rigg?

A small selection of the novels by EWC members past and present.

A small selection of the novels by EWC members past and present.


January I began 2013 in the knowledge that MuseItUp liked my Regency romance, Mariah’s Marriage, and were to e-publish it in May. Could I write another? Normally in January, I like to write and fire off a lot of shorts. Fillers, letters to the Magazine page, opinions, jokey observations, but this year was different. I was about to become a published novelist and must, therefore, write novels.
And blog about writing novels. So, sadly, my play blog has slipped into the background, although I update it from time to time, and Novels Now was born on 2nd January. I did a book review of Her New Worst Enemy by Christy McKellen and interviewed Scarlet Wilson who writes medicals for M & B.

February In February, I wrote the first posts in a series. This one was about ‘Where do you get your ideas from?’ A question truly dreaded by writers. I featured the RoNas which are one of the highlights of the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s year. This year they were graced by Richard and Judy.

March
March was a cross fertilisation as my publishers were doing Pet Writing Peeves on the MuseItUp blog. I opened a google a/c and managed to do an invited post. (Learning curves…)
But the biggie on Novels Now was the cover reveal for Mariah’s Marriage. Gorgeous! Designer is Charlotte K Volnek for MIU.

April
Another author interview. Fellow Edinburgh Writers’ Club member, Jane Riddell, talked about Water’s Edge, her debut novel from Thornberry Press.

May
May saw the publication of Mariah’s Marriage and I was able to report on attending the Joan Hessayon Award ceremony. Sadly, we didn’t win, but the RNA made all ten contenders feel like winners and I had a lovely trip to London for the event. I set off, electronically, on a publicity blog tour. Exhausting, but fun.

June
I was so pleased to announce that MIU had taken Bella’s Betrothal and she would be published in September.

July
I started a new series. This one is about aphorisms. Are you out there, Charles Rigg? I began with the cautionary tale of saying what I thought about a friend’s haircut in a post about Honesty is the best policy. It gets numerous visits from people in India. Are they writing school essays? Lovely to know you’re interested and keep visiting.

August
I offered a free copy of Mariah’s Marriage in the reverse birthday gifts blog of novelist, Sally Quilford. I’ve been slow to utilise giveaways, but they are of interest to many and there’s one current on this blog. Scroll down to ‘My Writing Process’. It closes at midnight on 5th January, ’14 UK time.

September
So fast, cover reveal (again by CKVolnek) for Bella’s Betrothal, and an online launch day. Lovely reviews from a variety of people go up. I go away for a month.

Oh Dear!

October More launch related activities.

November
Great visit to the Georgian House in Edinburgh’s Charlotte Square and a chance to learn some of the Polonaise and hear about Yule logs and Mr. Lamont’s love of Ayrshire cheese. As Bella’s Betrothal is set in post Georgian Edinburgh, this was very exciting.

December
My Writing Process, a blog tour current through Facebook, provided a platform and chance to cross-fertilise with other writers of historical romance. Lovely to welcome returning visitors, but also new ones.

My writing year has been full of firsts and interest. I’ve worked behind the scenes with lovely editors Judy Roth and Greta Gunselman and illustrator CK Volnek. My publisher, Lea Schizas has been supportive and encouraging. Reviewers have been favourably impressed in many cases and given their reviews freely. Readers have sent messages, publicly and privately. I cherish moments when people say things like, ‘You write really well.’ They’re simultaneously pleased and relieved.

In My Writing Process, I revealed the third enterprise is Daisy’s Dilemma. In 2014, I need to get the fingers on the keys and finish this WIP. Then it has to take the usual hurdles. I hope it’ll be out there for you to read and me to blog about, but…

Thanks for being along on the ride. Happy New Year.

Book Review

HER NEW WORST ENEMY by CHRISTY McKELLEN

Christy McKellen’s first romance, Her New Worst Enemy, gets off to a page turning start with a quirky, slightly ditzy heroine. Don’t we love them? And a tall handsome hero. They’ve got much in their favour too.

Ellie is not quite in recovery from being dumped by The Rat, Paul, and Gideon is not at all in recovery from being abandoned as a child by his grandparents and older sister. So far, so what happens next to keep you reading Her New Worst Enemy?

Lots, and I mean lots, of intriguing and inventive action in the bedroom, the kitchen, the shower… All in the best possible taste, folks. Christy’s style and language are attractive too making the book a fast paced, modern read. I had it on my kindle and London to Edinburgh whistled past in no time.

Christy has a secondary plot threaded throughout which keeps the principle one moving as the H & H approach the problem from different standpoints and we get not one, but two happy endings.

Great first novel from Christy McKellen and Crimson Romance. I look forward to future treats.