Research and Writing...a subject after my own heart! Everyone knows how much I love Wollombi Museum!! Welcome Imogene!!
Research and Writing...they go together like bees and honey. Without the research, the story is thin. If the facts are wrong, it can stop a reader in their tracks.
I'll admit it. I'm a research nut. My friends nicknamed me Imoooogene because I'm almost as quick as google! (Or so they tell me.) In fact, when a fact needs to be found... I'm pretty good at ferreting them out. I'm also a tech-geek, so those skills go together really well.
It's a joke in our circles that I live for the research. In fact it's become one of the features of my work. When I write it title, even if it's only a short 25k novella, I'm all about making sure my facts were right. I get really upset when I read something and **know** that the facts they are presenting are wrong.
To date, I've had the opportunities to work out "split s manoeuvres" for shuttles entering atmospheres, "Selective mutism in under 6 year olds" for a child who has watched both parents brutally murdered in front of her, through to the "atmospheric layers" and everything in-between. Does this strengthen my writing? I think so. It gives each action a reason for taking place and a realism readers demand.
My current research is delving into the landscape of India: social, political and geographic of 1878. And I'm having a ball. I've also been indulging in my serious fetish - looking at dresses and materials that would have been used by the English in 1878. From moire to lawn, bustles to headwear. Oh yes and even down to malaria and how it would have been dealt with by the doctors and physicians of the time.
I'm also a closet naval fanatic (well, not so closet now!) so I spent hours researching clippers versus cutters and finding deck-plans that would suit my needs, finally coming up with a workable layout for the Zephyr! I've been known to spend a whole day filling in the gaps for one or two paragraphs of writing.
It's my hope that Miss Elspeth's Desires will be finished before Christmas so I can begin on the sequel, Miss Isabelle's Craving.
Until then, I will continue to research my work thoroughly so my readers will continue to enjoy the stories I publish, safe in the knowledge that if it's in the story, then its been researched thoroughly.
Oh and don't forget to pop in and visit my latest party, the Not A Release Day Party on 9 September! http://www.facebook.com/events/1404732399743476/?fref=ts
AND TO WIN ALL SORTS OF PRIZES CHECK OUT THE GIVEAWAY BELOW!
And here's Imogene's latest release Hesparia's Tears...it sounds smashing!
What will happen when the past catches up?
Galan is from Hesparia, where the females are dying out on his pacific agrarian planet.
Jessa has a past, one she hasn’t earned but cannot escape from.
What will happen when opportunity knocks?
Galan travels to earth, hoping to plead the case for Hesparia. He doesn’t expect Jessa or The Quickening.
Can he make the case for women to migrate to Hesparia and arrange a Diplomatic Alliance? Can they trust one another with their hearts. And can Jessa really escape her past?
The spaceship entered orbit and Jessa watched the tracking on the television. Since learning of the existence of extraterrestrials, it was about all she wanted to do. See where they were and where they planned to land.
The reporter came back on the screen. “We believe they will make their landing somewhere on the continent of Australia. There have been no further radio communications from the craft, however. So it is, at best, an educated guess right now.”
Jessa giggled at the sober face of the young, twenty-something reporter standing outside the Parkes Observatory and the inane follow up comment made by the thirtyish female news anchor.
“Jessa, it’s time for bed!” her mother yelled again.
She sighed dramatically. At twenty-four she was no longer a child, even though her parents seemed to struggle with that small fact.
Maybe it’s time to move out. As quickly as the thought had crossed her mind, she dismissed it. Leaving home meant more expense than she could possibly afford. The thing that really irked her was paying an outstanding legal bill for something she hadn’t even done. It was a refrain that had played through her mind over and over again since the event had taken place. It may have happened years ago, but she continued to pay for her youthful indiscretion. One she had long regretted.
Jessa stood, before heading down the old hallway to the bathroom. Living at home meant sharing a bathroom with her little brother, Ben. Of course, being a boy of sixteen, he was disgusting. There were used razor blades, splashes of water, foam from his recent shaving experience and hairs in the sink. Knowing it would make no difference complaining about it she carefully picked up the discarded detritus and placed it in the bin beside the vanity unit, wiped away the mess and began her own night-time ritual.
Emerging from the bathroom, she spied her mother, standing at the end of the hall in her fluffy blue dressing gown with matching slippers, and her blonde hair sitting high on her head in soft curlers. It was the same scene every night. “Night, Jessa.”
“Night, Mum.” What else was there to say? In a funk, Jessa entered her room, before closing the door then sat down on her single bed. She breathed deeply, letting the oxygen flow through her system, before slowly levering herself down across the mattress. Her blinds were open so she had an excellent view of the star-studded sky. It was a major positive to living on the edge of town, the absence of bright lights.
“Whoever you are, I certainly hope you’re friendly,” Jessa muttered, before closing her eyes, rolling onto her side and willing herself to sleep. For some reason, an excited thrill ran through her system.
Finally, visitors from the stars. No longer was it a figment of someone’s imagination or something from a science fiction novel. The time had come for them to have contact with another species. That was a sobering thought. The Prime Minister had sent a radio message to the ship. God, I hope the Prime Minister didn’t act like a pompous dick. Jessa snuggled down under the covers, waiting for the touch of sleep. Her mind wandered and she drowsed.
Her mobile, sitting on the bedside table buzzed and vibrated. Jessa muttered in the dark, groping for the device. She reached out and found the red leather covered item and dragged it to her ears.
“Jessa, it’s me. Seth. Can you come to the office at the telescope? I need you.” His voice was excited.
She squinted. “I was asleep, Seth. Besides which, I’m off duty until Saturday.” The room was gloomy and she screwed her face up into a scowl, knowing sleep would probably elude her now. “What could be so important that I need to come in right now?” Jessa pushed back the covers, swung her legs over the side then slipped her feet into her old grey slippers beside the bed.
“I can’t tell you over the phone.”
“What?” Something was happening. An agitated thrill filled her chest and for an instant her mind warred with the interest that spiked.
He didn’t need to plead. Jessa was already getting up to hunt out clothes. “Sure. Yeah, I’ll be there in a few minutes.”
“Thanks. You really won’t regret it.” The delight in his voice was contagious.
Jessa hurriedly tapped the end call button.
Amazon ~ Barnes and Noble ~ All Romance EBooks ~ TotalEBound
Matilda's Freedom, Wollombi Museum and I made the local paper today!
For your Téa Time Treat today I have the lovely Iris Blobel visiting.
Welcome Iris! (What a beautiful name!)
Thanks Téa for having me as your guest today and the opportunity to talk about my book “New Beginnings”.
Over the last few days I’ve talked about why I set the story in Hobart, my German background and my love for Tasmania. So initially my mind was a bit blank when it came to writing “something different”.
Then I thought about this. It may or may not tickle your interest. New Beginnings was published by Astraea Press, a reasonably young American publisher. A “clean” publisher. It’s my third book with AP and I love working with the team.
So what’s special about this book … one of my main characters is an Escort. How does that fit into a “clean romance”?
You have definitely tickled my interest!
Well, it's for me to know and you to find out!
Hmm! Well I sneaked a peek at the tagline and had to go and check the blurb. Now my curiosity is killing me…here it is everyone…
To believe in new beginnings is to trust in tomorrow. (Great tagline!)
Twenty-two-year-old Sophie Levesque has been guardian to eight-year-old sister Mia since their mother’s death a few years ago. Luck comes their way when they inherit a small house in Hobart. Problem is, though, they don’t know or have even heard of Clara Bellinger, the testator, and Sophie is afraid it’s all been a mistake.
As Mia settles well into her new school and life in general, Sophie is not only occupied by her search of what connected her to Clara, but also her new studies and the two men, who suddenly have become part of her daily life - Mark O’Connor, the lawyer representing Clara’s estate, and Zach, the hunk from across the road.
Definitely tickled! Have you got an excerpt?
Yes. I hope you all enjoy it. Thanks for having me here.
Thanks for the treat Iris! A whole chapter!
Sophie stared at the attorney, waiting for some answers. She and her sister, Mia, had been quietly sitting in Mr. O’Connor’s office for more than half an hour, and had learnt about the details of their inheritance.
"Clara Catherine Bellinger."
"Who is she?" Mia asked.
Startled by the subtle sound of the clock chiming across the road, Sophie’s gaze turned to the window, where she saw the post office building across the road. It looked impressive and old. Surely, an old place like this would have its own ghosts — after all, Hobart was renowned for its lively spirits.
Her younger sister’s gentle touch on her arm reminded her she hadn’t answered the question, yet. "I wouldn’t have a clue." Sophie shrugged and focused her attention back on Mr. O’Connor. Although hearing his words, she still found it hard to comprehend. Here she was in this old office, furnished with heavy antique oak furniture, the curtains in a pretty shade of aubergine, and the carpet beneath her shoes thick and warm in a matching shade.
"I believe she was a distant relative of yours. I’m afraid I don’t have any further details," he replied.
Sophie arched an eyebrow in disbelief. Was he serious? What kind of lawyer was he? Sure, Tasmania was at the very end of Australia, but wouldn’t they have the same education? With a slight shrug of her shoulder, she asked, "Why not?"
He stared at her. "Pardon me?"
Sitting up straight, she repeated, "Why not? Why aren’t there any further details?"
He looked uneasy, but she didn’t care. She needed to know. Sophie had received a call from the lawyer a week earlier, and he’d told her about an
inheritance. He’d given her details on where to pick up tickets to Hobart. Some legality, he had said. She needed to come in and sign documents for the transfer of ownership.
"Ms. Bellinger was one of the partner’s clients. I was only given the details shortly after the client’s death."
Sophie drew in her lips. Her eyes darted over to the window as she took a few deep breaths, inwardly calming herself. Nothing had ever been easy in her life. "Why isn’t the partner here?"
He took a deep breath. "Retired."
As she pondered on that for a moment, she began to think about what life could be like with this inheritance. Different. Better. Another sigh escaped as she returned her gaze to the man behind the desk. "You can’t just leave your assets to just anybody, can you?"
"Levesque," she helped him.
Their eyes met.
"Are you refusing the bequest?" he asked hesitantly, and she clearly noticed how one of his eyebrows arched upward.
Staring blankly with her mouth open, she could feel the panic running through her veins with every thump of her erratic heartbeat. An uncomfortable silence fell over them for a moment. Then she quickly said, "No. No, of course not. We’re accepting." She turned to look at her younger sister. "We’re actually looking forward to seeing it."
And with one swift movement, he stood and went to a little cupboard near the window and retrieved a bunch of keys. "Would you like me to take you there?"
Still feeling that rush within her, Sophie took Mia’s hand and inclined her head in answer. "Is it far?" Her voice sounded tired. Even to herself. It had been a long day already. She stood and thinking how tired she was, Sophie placed her arm around Mia, who was probably exhausted.
"No, not at all. Five to ten minute drive, I’d say."
"I still don’t understand. Why us?" Sophie asked quietly, meeting his gaze and, for the first time, actually taking in his icy-blue eyes. He was very attractive. Too attractive for a boring lawyer. His face was tanned by wind and sun, and there always seemed to be a hint of a smile on his face. His blond curling hair was cut short. Her gaze fixed back on his mouth. Blushing, she quickly looked away.
The attorney turned to them. He scratched the back of his head. "Ma’am, what I know is that both of you are in the will. What I know is that I was supposed to fly you down here to officially read you the will. What I know is that I’m supposed to hand over the keys to you, and to let you know that your expenses are covered for the next twenty-four months. I did not know Ms. Bellinger, as one of the retired partners wrote up the will. I do not know who she was or in which way she was connected to you. I assumed she was a distant relative."
Sophie took her sister’s hand as she thought about his last comment. Distant relative? Her mother would have at least mentioned her once. She sighed and tried to understand, not the circumstances that had brought her there, but the fact that the attorney just didn’t know. "Oh well, let’s go then."
He pinched his nose with his thumb and index finger and took a deep breath. "Okay. Look, Miss Lever—"
"Levesque," Sophie helped him again. This time somewhat more firmly.
Running his thumb over his eyebrow, he stepped closer, but not so close as to be intimidating. "I’m sorry. It’s been one extraordinary week," he said with his voice just above a whisper. "Once I get back I’ll check with the partners here to see whether anybody knows more about it."
One extraordinary week? His remark irked her. In fact it was downright annoying. Holding Mia even closer to her side, she lifted her finger and pointed at him. "No offence, Mr. O’Connor, but it has been quite a week for us as well, and I was prepared to answer all your questions. I have one simple question, and you don’t know. Wouldn’t there be something in the file?" Sophie was a kind person.
Kindness was her middle name, but she wouldn’t have got that far in life if she hadn’t watched some of those nasty actresses on television and copied them. And the stare. Sophie met his surprised frown dead-on.
He frowned and seemed taken aback by her words. "No offence taken." And then he let out a deep breath. "You’re right. I apologise. As I said, I’ll find out details and let you know."
"Thank you, Mr. O’Connor," she replied as she blew out a breath.
"What about our stuff?" Mia whispered to Sophie.
Sophie moved her head to look down at her sister, but before she had a chance to say anything, he beat her to it. "What stuff?" he asked as he opened the door.
"Considering what we inherited here, we brought all our things," Sophie explained without looking at him.
The attorney stopped in his tracks. "All, as in all your clothes?"
Sophie’s eyes met his. She emitted a small sigh, but tried to keep her composure. It was something she had learnt over the last few years. Standing straight, she corrected him. "All, as in all our belongings."
They stepped outside the building and followed Mr. O’Connor with their suitcases. Two teenage boys walked past them, eager to get the attention of some girls across the road. Aware of the attention, the girls covered their mouths with their hands and broke into giggles. Sophie’s stomach churned. So many things she had missed out on in life. But it was going to be better from now on, she reminded herself, and straightened up as she followed Mr. O’Connor.
Astraea Press: http://astraeapress.com/#!/~/product/category=662245&id=27261175
Iris Blobel was born and raised in Germany and only immigrated to Australia in the late 1990s. Having had the travel bug most of her life, Iris spent quite some time living in Scotland, London as well as Canada where she actually had met her future husband. Her love for putting her stories onto paper has only recently emerged, but now her laptop is a constant companion. Iris resides west of Melbourne with her husband and her beautiful two daughters as well as her two dogs. Next to her job at a private school she also presents a German Program at the local Community Radio.
Matilda's Freedom is only $1.99 on iTunes at the moment and I nearly missed it!
I spent today printing off the final version of my new Australian historical romance. One more read through and I will be sending it off 'snail mail'. There's something a little daunting about seeing all those words in print. I have to say a huge thank you to my critique partner. It's so important to get a second opinion.
And so the waiting games begins! I'm really excited about this story - it's a little different and I have so loved writing it. So much so I think it might have to be a family saga!
Next comes my favourite bit...the research. Can my mad ideas become a story? We shall see but first of all a trip to the Post Office!
Here's a great opportunity to pick up some fantastic books and win a Kindle and all sorts of Gift Cards!
Grand Prize: 1 Kindle Fire
Second Prize: $25.00 Gift Card for Breathless Press
Third Prize: $10.00 Gift Card for Breathless Press
Fourth Prize: 10 x $5.00 Gift Cards for Breathless Press (individual gift cards, 1 per person)
For the whole of August Breathless Press are celebrating their 4th birthday with 40% off all
their titles and that includes three of my books!! TREE CHANGE, THE PROTEA BOYS and
A WINNING STREAK.
A Winning Streak is available for a short time from Breathless Press for a teeny tiny 50cents!
Will the path of true love incur the wrath of the virgin Goddess Artemis?
Abandoned at birth, Atalante, protege of the goddess Artemis, is forced into an untenable position by her estranged father, the King of Arcadia—renege on her vow of virginity or condemn her suitors to a sacrificial death. The aristocratic courtier, Melanion, cannot believe anyone would be foolish enough to put their life on the line for the dirty little predator whose reputation for speed and cruelty is legendary. That is until he falls under Atalante's spell.
Consumed by desire and jealousy, Melanion is determined to win Atalante's hand or die trying. He calls upon Aphrodite to assist him, little realizing that her noisome brat, Eros, has the pair of them in his sights and is determined to inject a little spice into their lives. Spice that will devastate the path of true love and incur the wrath of the virgin Goddess Artemis.
THE PROTEA BOYS and TREE CHANGE are also reduced on the Breathless Press website to $2.99 AND you can enter the Rafflecopter at the blog below and be in the running for one $25 GC, one $10 GC and 10 $5 GCs.
HAPPY FOURTH BIRTHDAY BREATHLESS PRESS!
Welcome to my blog!
JOIN NEWSLETTER GROUP