Friday, October 31, 2014

Sunday, October 26, 2014

NaNoWriMo and me

November is nearly upon us and this in the writing world means National Novel Writing Month. It is all about writing the first draft of a novel in a month. (Not the draft you will submit but the first draft -- they are vrey different kettle of fish).
I have agreed to take part with two others from the Pink Heart Society. So I have gone and actually signed up for NaNoWriMo  It is only 50k.
This is slightly huge. Mostly I get a rabbit in the headlight feeling when I say something about doing a novel this quickly. But I am putting this on record as I want to get this novel done and dusted. I want to get back to writing several thousand words a day.
The main caveat is that IF my editor gets back to me with her thoughts -- that one takes precedence and all bets are off. Summer is under contract after all and I write for money. It is my day job.

So I am going to start the manuscript which comes before the M&B that I originally thought I would write at the beginning of the month. Basically the characters decided it for me and I am not a writer to allow good narrative action to go to waste.

So right now, for the next 5 days (I have to start writing on 1 Nov) I have to make sure my planning is up to scratch. I am more a pantser in many ways but there are certain bits which need to be done.
Updates will be forthcoming.

Please wish me luck.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Cover reveal for Taming His Viking Woman

I know I should be less bouncy than I am and do AN event but I am far too excited!!!

The sea-king's warrior bride 
Legendary shield maiden Sayrid Avildottar will marry no man unless he first defeats her in combat. And in powerful sea-king Hrolf Eymundsson she has finally met her match. 
Hrolf may have won her lands—and her body—but can Sayrid welcome a stranger to her bed? The world of fighting is all she knows! With a husband intent on seducing his new bride, perhaps, just this once, Sayrid will discover that surrender can bring the greatest pleasure of all… 
"Maintains the myth while adding sexual tension, nonstop action and spice." —RT Book Reviews on The Viking's Captive Princess

As a side note I appear to be channeling pixie cut hair and so no prizes for guessing how my hair is going to be cut come Thursday.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Delving into the 7th century

Yesterday saw the release of my Victorian trio -To Marry a Matchmaker, Compromising Miss Milton and Breaking the Governess's Rules in the North American market. Cue banners and trumpets. I have waited a long time for this to happen.
Currently I am working on two projects while waiting to hear my editor's thoughts about Summer of Her Viking Warrior. The only really successful approach to keep the Crows of Doubt at bay is to write another book or several books. IN short to become excited about something else.

My first project is a historical fiction project set in the 7th century. It is on an epic scale and requires an epic amount of research.  I need to get things straight in my head. There is much which has been lost and will probably never be found. We are not talking 7 kingdoms but many kingdoms and the written historical record starts about the time I want to focus on. Fascinating but frustrating. Where precisely was the decisive battle of Degsastan which put an end to Dal Raidic ambitions in England for over 130 years... It will be interesting to see if I can bring it to life.

My second project is a more conventional M&B Viking set historical but this time in the Western Isles. I loved visiting Islay in September. Very little remains of their Viking heritage (apparently Colonsay is much better) but it is utterly fascinating.  The Vikings did not just raid, they came and stayed. And the land being the land, it grew into their very souls and the Vikings became Gallowglass -- foreign Gaels.  It is where the term Galloway comes from.
Somerled who wrestled the Isles from the King of Man (and Norwegian control) was  at least half Norse. It is thought with a Norse mother and a Celtic father (some dispute this saying he was fully Norse).
The full integration of the Western Isles into Scotland didn't really happen until after 1607. Some might it never has as the Western Isles maintain their own identity.
It is when you are there that you can a sense of the Sea Kingdom that once was.
But again it is not a very well researched time.  I think mostly people prefer to concentrate on the Celts or Gaels, forgetting that the Vikings did really shape Scotland.
And I have to keep remembering that Scots in the 9th century meant Irish, not where we think of it today.

And the kilt or short kilt was invented in 1707 by Thomas Rawlinson, an Englishman who had moved his factory up North to back take advantage of the fuel. However his workers were getting too hot and discarding their Great  kilts. or getting burnt. So the short kilt was a compromise. It proved so popular that it soon took off. The great kilt dates from the late medieval period. Apparently one battle was known as the battle of the shirts as it was too hot to fight in the Great kilt and so they were discarded.  I am afraid the mental image amused me.