– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –
Today I’m on the ‘The Heiress’s Pregnancy Surprise’ blogtour, organized by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I have a Q&As post, but before I let you read it first some ‘basic’ information.
About the Author :
While bestselling author Donna Alward was busy studying Austen, Eliot and Shakespeare, she was also losing herself in the breathtaking stories created by romance novelists like LaVyrle Spencer and Judith McNaught. Several years after completing her degree she decided to write a romance of her own and it was true love! Five years and ten manuscripts later she sold her first book and launched a new career. While her heartwarming stories of love, hope, and homecoming have been translated into several languages, hit bestseller lists and won awards, her very favorite thing is when she hears from happy readers.
Donna lives on Canada’s east coast. When she’s not writing she enjoys reading (of course!), knitting, gardening, cooking…and is a Masterpiece Theater addict. You can visit her on her website and join her mailing list.
A VIP assignment …
an unexpected consequence!
Ex-SAS officer Jacob Wolfe’s latest job, as aristocrat Charlotte Pemberton’s bodyguard, is pushing him to his limits. Never one to step over the line, he’s determined to ignore their intense connection. Until a single dance leads to a forbidden kiss… and Jacob is tempted to break all his rules. But their resulting night together has an unexpected consequence…
First of all thank you very much for taking the time to answer my questions, I really appreciate it. Here we go! 🙂
Can you, for those who don’t know you already, tell something about yourself and how you became an author?
Thanks for having me today! I’ve always been a bit of a writer, but after my second child was born, I had a bad case of postpartum depression. When she was about a year old, I was doing better but really looking for something that was just for me. My sister said, “You’ve always wanted to write a book, so why don’t you?” I did, and I loved the process so much I kept at it until I finally sold my first novel in 2006.
Which books did/do you love to read as a child/now as a grown-up?
I spent many afternoons on our sunporch with LM Montgomery, the Bobbsey Twins, and oddly enough, my parents’ World Book Encyclopedias.
Is there a writer whose brain you would love to pick for advice? Who would that be and why?
For advice…hmmm. I would love to spend time with Elizabeth Gilbert. I met her a year and a half ago and loved the workshop I did with her. Being able to hang out would be something else entirely. 😊
If you could, which fictional character (from your own book(s) or someone else’s) would you like to invite for tea and why?
Judy Plum from Pat of Silver Bush (LM Montgomery). She’d have me laughing but also stuff me full of tea and goodies.
Do you have some rituals or habits whilst writing?
I actually have fewer rituals now than I used to! And sometimes they change. For example, last summer was gorgeous weather-wise, and so I would write a little in the morning in my office, then around 2-3 p.m. I’d head out to the deck, when the sun wasn’t direct and too hot. It was the perfect work environment. After another hour or so, my husband would join me and we’d read for a bit before flashing up the grill to make dinner.
Where do you come up with your idea(s)? Do people in your life need to be worried? 😉
No one needs to be worried – ideas come from everywhere and quite often from a brainstorming session with my friends.
Are you a plotter or do you go with the flow, as a pantser?
I’m a pantser! I generally have the basic idea for the book and a bit of a handle on the characters, but I sit down and type “Chapter One” and go.
Can you give novice writers some tips (do’s/don’ts)?
Absolutely! Write because you love it and edit like you’re selling it. Loving it will get you through the hard times and feed your creative soul. But being willing to revise and change will help you succeed in the market. Also, if you’re planning on self-publishing, hire an editor and cover artist. This is not the time to DIY.
What are your future plans as an author?
So many plans! Right now I’m finishing up the HEIRS TO AN EMPIRE series, and also republishing a big chunk of my backlist. In addition, I’m working on something VERY different that has been super fun and exciting.
Last, but not least : Can you give my readers one teaser from your book, which is featured here on my blog, please?
This scene happens at a party during Fashion Week in New York. Charlotte is attending with her bodyguard, Jacob…who turns out to be a wonderful wingman and friend when she runs into an ex…
It was good to slip out of the crowd for a few moments and head to the slightly quieter ladies’ room. She locked herself in a stall and took three minutes to deep-breathe. There were others in the room, and their conversations came and went, and when Charlotte finally felt slightly restored, she flushed the unused toilet and unlocked the door.
At the mirrors she touched up her hair and lipstick, then let out a huge breath and prepared to face the party again.
Outside, wearing a broad smile, was Mark Church, holding two glasses of champagne.
She stopped. Tonight was the first time she’d thought of him in months, and now here he was. “Mark.”
Oh, the way he said it was so warm and familiar. It made her remember the good times, but the memories were quickly tainted by the reminder of his betrayals. She’d been young and foolish, but trusting him had taught her a valuable lesson. So she smiled because it made sense to let bygones be bygones. “I didn’t realize you’d be here tonight.”
“I managed an invitation.”
Of course he had. That was how he operated. And now, some of his clients were the highest-paid models in the world. It burned that she had to maintain a cordial relationship, but the truth was, it was good for Aurora to not burn any bridges.
He offered her the glass of champagne. “How about a toast to old times?”
She took it and lifted an eyebrow. “I was twenty-two and very, very green,” she said, a veiled way of saying she’d been naive and foolish.
“Maybe we’re both older and wiser now?” He smiled his charming smile, and she smiled back. Politely. Thankfully, she felt nothing but regret and relief seeing him now. No lingering attraction, no pain. Just regret that she’d been so gullible and relieved that it was truly behind her. Now if she could just extricate herself gracefully…
She saw Jacob out of the corner of her eye and waved him off with a subtle flick of her hand. He paused, but his eyes never left them. Suddenly she was glad of it.
“Cheers,” Mark said, and touched the rim of his glass to hers.
She drank because not to would have been even more uncomfortable. The bubbles fizzed on her tongue and she swallowed, wondering if the alcohol would help her relax.
“I haven’t seen you since…” He frowned. “Since the charity event in London.”
“Six years,” she said, pasting on the smile that she’d worn all damn day.
“Amazing how we keep missing each other, in all that time.”
It wasn’t amazing at all. Charlotte generally stayed on her side of the Atlantic. And rekindling anything with Mark wasn’t on her agenda.
“You’re looking gorgeous. Even more beautiful than you were then. I take it that’s an Aurora design?”
“Of course.” She cradled the champagne glass. “I wouldn’t wear anything else.”
“It’s very timeless. I mean, your mother would look smashing in it.”
And there it was. The subtle little dig, the slight criticism that had always turned her off. “I’ll be sure to tell her you said so. Now if you’ll excuse me…”
She went to move away but he reached out and grabbed her wrist. They were close enough now she could smell the booze and knew he’d been drinking for a while, though he hid it well. A wave of revulsion rolled through her. She hadn’t forgotten that Mark Church was the kind of man who would say whatever he needed to get what he wanted.
“Let’s get out of here and go someplace quieter,” he suggested, his dark eyes meeting hers. “For old times’ sake.”
She pulled her wrist away just as she became aware of Jacob coming forward. “What a kind suggestion, but no thank you.”
He slid closer. “Come on, Charlotte. We were good together. Let’s see how it—”
“Ah, there you are.” Jacob’s voice was measured and calm. “I wondered if you’d been held up.” His eyes smiled down into hers, and then she watched as he turned his icy gaze on Mark. “And you are?”
Mark, being the idiot he was, straightened his shoulders and lifted his chin, which still left him a few inches shorter than Jacob. “Mark Church.” He didn’t ask Jacob his name, which seemed totally in character.
“Nice to meet you. Charlotte, darling…” Charlotte nearly rolled her eyes at his deliberate overplay of “darling” in a very posh Londony type of accent. “Shall we get back?”
“Of course.” She was so grateful for the save.
They’d just started to move away when Mark stepped forward again. “Charlotte, remember what I said. We’re both in town all week.”
Gross. As if she’d hook up with him again after all this time. But she didn’t have to worry. Jacob let go of her hand and stepped up to Mark, face-to-face, and Charlotte wanted to laugh at the sheer difference in their physiques. Mark’s expression turned to one of childish defiance.
“Not cool, Mark. I’m standing right here. And I recall the lady saying no. That’s all it takes, right? No?”
“Sure, mate.” Mark replied in a fake accent that made him seem even more ridiculous.
Charlotte took Jacob’s hand again, so very grateful he was with her despite her protests that she didn’t need a bodyguard.
And when Mark muttered a word that equated Jacob to a particular piece of anatomy, Charlotte wasn’t so sure Jacob wouldn’t turn around.
Instead Jacob laughed and shook his head. “All booze and no brains,” he muttered. “And not worth it. Unless you want me to.”
“I don’t want a scene,” she said back. “But thank you, Jacob. I don’t think I need a bodyguard, but I’m awfully glad you were my wingman tonight.”
He stopped and faced her, and there was something different in his expression. Something softer and more personal.
Isn’t that a great reason to pick up this book and to find out more?!
Thanks once again for this lovely interview, Donna Alward.
The Magic of Wor(l)ds
P.S. Are you an author (or publisher) who also wants a FREE interview like this? You can always contact me via e-mail!