It was excitement all round this morning when I was invited onto Radio Tamworth 106.8FM to be interviewed by the fabulous Kiran Parmar, as part of her weekly book show.
The interview was conducted over two hours and we covered a vast array of subjects from wedding proposals, retro jewellery, Mad dog 20:20, tea making and a lot of chatter about my three books.
If you missed the live interview here is the opportunity for you to listen via the on-demand player - follow the link below , sit back and enjoy!
We will definitely be doing another interview as this morning was so much fun!
On-demand player link: select
11:48pm on Sunday, 20th May 2018, I finished the final edits for book 3 'The Magic of Christmas Tree Farm' and was able to press the 'send' button submitting it to my publisher. I have to be honest and say the bubble of excitement that filled my heart was truly amazing. I simply love the story. It is probably the most personal story I have written for many reasons.
Firstly, having published two previous book there were many beautiful people I wanted to thank for their dedication and 'general loveliness' in supporting me since March 2017. These beautiful people have gone out of their way everyday to ask me: how I am coping with juggling the day-job and the dream? How's the writing coming along? Even, are you getting enough rest? Seriously, I have such a wonderful network of folk around me making sure that 'this girl doesn't do too much'. I feel truly blessed, to have them look out for me. I certainly wouldn't have coped with the 'juggle' any other way. Especially given that some folk are still yet to mention my achievement, but hey ho! Anyway, I wanted to acknowledge the beauties in a way that they would never imagine and so, I included either their forename or surname in book 3. Honestly, it was the biggest secret I have kept for ages! I finally burst, and had the delight of telling them when draft one had been successfully written. So, Kitty P, Sharon W, Jackie G, Becca H, Fielding, Salloway, Pardoe, Turner, Woodward, Mr Klym, Mr Phillips and Miss Read all find themselves in the plot. I can't tell you how excited I am for 4th September 2018 to arrive.
The story follows three women, Nina, Angie and Holly through their journey of self-discovery towards happiness. Their three stories slowly entwine and eventually end up at Christmas Tree Farm, a local supplier of spruces. The structure of the plot-line was intriguing and totally consuming to write. The end result is a story that will make you laugh, cry and possibly think about your own experiences in life. As the author, it has certainly made me think back in time to my younger days and question certain reactions.
The main character Nina, works at the Christmas Tree Farm all year around but she has a dilemma: should she date either of her best friends Bram or Zach? To hinder her decision, they are twins of her employer, so should she mix business with pleasure? Nina is cautious. Her twenty-five years have been difficult due to her father suffering from Multiple Sclerosis and she being his only carer. His death last Christmas Eve was the final blow, so this year she cancels Christmas as a means of coping... but Christmas Tree Farm has other plans for her. With the help of her close and trusted friends Kitty, Shazza and Jackie she finds a way to overcome the sorrow and shine like the 'diamond glints on snow'.
I apologise now, if this story makes you cry, but remember it made me cry at every stage of writing after draft one! The acknowledgements will reveal all and honour the 'beautiful people' that have paved my journey in 2017 x
Pre-order via Amazon: The Magic of Christmas Tree Farm 4th September 2018 (paperback copies will be available to order nearer publication date).
The countdown to the announcement has begun, eeeek! I am nominated with 16 other fabulous authors for this year's Joan Hessayon award 2018 which will be announced on Thursday at the Ashmolean museum, Oxford.
The Joan Hessayon Award is generously sponsored by gardening expert Dr David Hessayon OBE, in honour of his late wife Joan, who was a longstanding member of the RNA and a great supporter of its New Writers’ Scheme. The scheme has been run by the RNA since 1962 and is unique among professional writing associations. It aims to encourage fresh talent in the writing of romantic novels that reflect all aspects of love and life, contemporary or historical. Imogen Howson, who co-ordinates the New Writers’ Scheme, commented, “It is wonderful to see debut authors graduating from the New Writers’ Scheme and we are ever grateful to Dr David Hessayon who continues to support the Awards in honour of his late wife, Joan.”
The full list of nominated authors:
Mick Arnold, The Season for Love, Passion in Print
Donna Ashcroft, Summer at the Castle Café, Bookouture
Susanna Bavin, The Deserter’s Daughter, Allison & Busby
Cryssa Bazos, Traitor’s Knot, Endeavour Press
Hannah Begbie, Mother, Harper Collins
Anita Belli, The Traveller and the Rose, Endeavour Press
Lynn Forth, Love in La La Land, Crooked Cat
Erin Green, A Christmas Wish, Aria Fiction
Lisa Hill, Meet Me at Number Five, Choc Lit
John Jackson, Heart of Stone, Crooked Cat
Jane Lacey-Crane, Secrets and Tea at Rosie Lee’s, Aria Fiction
Zoe May, Perfect Match, HQ Digital
Sue McDonagh, Summer at the Art Café, Choc Lit
Kate Ryder, Summer in a Cornish Cove, Aria Fiction
Elaine Roberts, The Foyles Bookshop Girls, Aria Fiction
Tanya Jean Russell, Broken Trust, Evernight Publishing
Awen Thornber, Foxtrot in Freshby, Crooked Cat
You can 'follow' the announcements and Twitter feed by connecting with @RNATweets #SummerParty2018 on Thursday.
Good luck to everyone - let's make it a cracking night!
Update: Despite all your good wishes I didn't win... but I had the most fabulous night celebrating success. Which is what matters to me. The Ashmolean museum, Oxford was a beautiful venue and very fitting for such a wonderful night. It felt more like a graduation party than anything else and so, we let the bubbles flow amongst the chatter and laughter.
I have frequently talked about the 'naughty girls' on the 22:00 Euston London train, well three of us were present and I am proud to say we didn't disappoint. Philippa had the bright idea to visit The Turf, a Oxford bar that she's frequented as a student, so she led a small group towards the fun. Boy, did we have a giggle - apologises to the students present, it's not everyday a bunch of loud people, old enough to be your parents crash your bar! But, we did!
I was slightly overdressed for a uni haunt but what the heck, what a fabulous night!