Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Welcome Guest Author Rachel Brimble!

I'm so excited to welcome a fellow Wild Rose Press author to the blog today! 

Welcome, Rachel Brimble!

So, to start, please share a little about yourself, your genres, any other pen names you use.

I write romantic suspense, contemporary and Victorian romance. I love the variety of my writing and when I first ‘hear’ the hero or heroine’s voice, they immediately tell me in which sub-genre their story needs to be told. It works very well for all of us!

I live with my husband of thirteen years and two daughters in South West England, just a thirty minute drive from the famous and beautiful Georgian City of Bath. As well as writing I work part-time so time is precious and I’m never ever bored, lol!

OMG, Bath is fantastic! I’ve been there once and fell totally in love (with all of South England, truly). I love the way you described your writing process there. Okay, then, tell us a little about your latest or upcoming release.

My latest release is Getting It Right This Time by Lyrical Press. It is a contemporary romance set in the UK and has it all: love, laughter, suspense and the ultimate happy ever after. Here’s the blurb and buy link ; )
She's back, but this time she’s a mother…intent on protecting her young.

Two years after her husband’s death, Kate Marshall returns home seeking security and stability for her three-year-old daughter. But when her path crosses with ‘the one who got away’…her husband’s best friend, she has to fight the desire to be with him for the sake of further heartbreak for her and her daughter.

A tough, straight talking theatrical agent, Mark Johnston is dangerously handsome, exceedingly rich, irresistibly charming – and branded by the tabloids as one of the UK’s most eligible bachelors. So even though Mark lost the girl of his dreams to his best friend, he finds no hardship in being single. Or so he thought.

Determined not to lose her a second time, Mark has to find a way to convince her they can work.  But can Kate cope with the media interest and ruthless, money-hungry clients surrounding him, being anywhere near her daughter?  Or accept that Mark Johnston is really the family man he claims to be?
Ooh, that sounds like a fantastic summer read, people! So, which character is your favorite and why?

This is such a hard question for me to answer with this book – in all my previous books I have had one character that I loved above all the others, but in Getting It Right This Time, I love Mark (hero) and Kate (heroine) equally, but also Jessica, Kate’s daughter. She was a joy to write and I have had such lovely comments from both readers and reviewers saying how lovely she was and how much she made them smile.

I totally know how you feel. I have a child in my latest release and she seems to be a real scene-stealer—hard not to love! As the author, what surprised you about this story?

The suspense element – it wasn’t planned when I started it but the ‘villain’ of the piece grew and grew in my mind until she was a fully-fledged and important part of the book. In fact, it was the villain that led me to write the book I am working on right now.

The books aren’t connected in anyway but I enjoyed writing Getting It Right This Time so much, I knew it was time for me to return to romantic suspense that I haven’t written for three years. My current work is a struggle right now but I am two-thirds the way through and will get there…eventually!

Yes, you will! Push through that need-to-finish-the-end fatigue! Will there be any sequels or other books in the same series?

No – see above! I am yet to write a series of any sort but I have been asked by my publisher to consider a sequel to my next release, coming in September, that I may well write because Paying The Piper is full to bursting with characters that have more to offer. I also have an idea percolating for a Victorian series set on a big country estate in Bath.

Watch this space!

Yes, definitely do! What was the hardest thing for you about writing this story?

Getting started! I knew I wanted the story to revolve around a child but wasn’t sure how or why. My books often start with a character talking to me and this one was entirely different than ever before in that the first voice I heard was a little girl’s. Completely threw me but the more I listened to her, the more I learned about her mother.

Once I had a four-page synopsis written, I had a good idea of where I was going – the next bit was getting the words on the page! Writing each book is never easy for me but I keep going – that’s all every writer can do.

So true! What are you working on right now?

As I mentioned previously, my current work in progress is the first romantic suspense I have written for three years. I am struggling through right now but know the idea is a good one and fingers crossed my editor will too!

It is set in the fictional seaside town of Templeton Cove and revolves around three summer vacation friends. When one of the friends is found murdered, the other two join forces to find her killer…and of course, fall in love along the way.

Sounds so interesting. So, what happened to the first book you ever wrote?

It was published by The Wild Rose Press, yay!! I wrote lots and lots of short stories before embarking on my life-long dream of writing a novel and learned so much over the proceeding five years that I think I avoided a lot of common mistakes.

I must have written at least seven or eight drafts of this book and then my editor was fantastic in making it shine before it was released. Searching For Sophie came out in July 2007 and I was on top of the world!
What do you find easiest and hardest to write?

I find the synopsis the hardest to write which is why I write a rough draft of one before I do anything. I outline my story in a three or four page synopsis, which I continually update and change as I write my first draft. That way, when I’ve finished I’ve got something to tweak rather than write from scratch.

Easiest to write for me are the love scenes – I never get embarrassed and thoroughly enjoy myself!

Oh, that’s a great idea for tackling the synopsis! Have you incorporated actual events or people from your own life into your books?

Never intentionally, although I think there is an aspect of that in every character and situation a writer feels compelled to put onto paper. It won’t be an obvious rehashing of an event but just subtle hints at the writer’s feelings or memories. Often things are two or three memories mixed together.

Interesting. Is there a theme or message that runs through your work?

Regaining trust seems to be a recurring theme – which goes back to the writer him or herself. I clearly have my own issues I need to work through, lol!

Still, that’s something a lot of people can identify with! What would your readers be surprised to learn about you?

I hate porridge (oatmeal) with a passion – to the point I’m a little bit scared of it!

LOL Which romance book or series (or other genre) do you wish you had written?

I love the J D Robb books – love Rourke, love Eve, cannot recommend them highly enough. Romantic suspense writing at its best!

Of all the characters you’ve ever written, who is your favorite and why?

Most probably Lily in The Arrival of Lily Curtis as I have had readers say she made them laugh out loud as she did me when I was writing her story…but I also love Grace in my upcoming September release, Paying The Piper, but you’ll have to wait to read about her.

Okay, now, just for fun:
Milk chocolate or dark chocolate? Milk

Salty or sweet? Sweet

Bed or kitchen table? Kitchen table

Beach or mountains? Mountains

Give or receive? Give

Thanks for being coming on the blog, Rachel! Where can we find you on the web?

Everyone, please leave Rachel some comment love! And thanks for reading,
Laura & Rachel


Vonnie Davis said...

Lovely interview, Rachel. I'm also glad to hear I'm not the only one who has characters speaking to them. The first few times it happened, I confess to freaking out. I was sure I'd stepped from reality into the twilight zone. I love romance stories with a child thrown into the mix. This adds a deeper dimension to the story, I think. Much success to you!!

Laura Kaye said...

Thanks for stopping by, Vonnie! I totally agree about children in romance! :)

Calisa Rhose said...

Wonderful interview Rachel and Laura. Your books sound great! I have a little girl in my medical I'm working on revisions for and she's adorable, too. They do tend to spotlight, don't they?

Good luck with sales and your upcoming releases.

Lynne Marshall said...

Well, I'm hooked on that story synopsis. Thanks for the great author interview and a chance to be introduced to another new author for me.

Have been to Bath - must go back!

Debra St. John said...

Hi Rachel and Laura,

Rachel, I am so amazed you can write in so many different genres. I also envy you being able to come up with any kind of synopsis before you write. I'm one of those cheaters who writes the darn thing after the story is done.

Good luck with your WIP and congrats on your new release!

Mimi Barbour said...

Hi Rachel,
Just thought I'd pop by and tell you how much I love your writing. Reading "The Arrrival of Lily Curtis" right now and it's caught me up so much, I'm having trouble putting it down and getting back to work.
Your newest "Getting it Right This Time" sounds like a wonderful read also.
Keep'em coming!!!
p.s. and you're so right. Children seem to show up in my books without me even planning them and they always twist me aound their little fingers...and end up being my favorite characters.

Laura Kaye said...

So many great comments! Thanks for stopping by to support Rachel!

Rachel Brimble said...

Lordy, lordy, lordy!!! I am SO sorry for not dropping by earlier and thank you, Laura for the nudge! ; )

I have had one of those days when you think "Okay, I woke up this morning with a plan, a plan to get things done but somewhere along the line I must have been a bad, bad girl because everything is going wrong!!" Arrgh!

Anyway, rant over, lol! I'm glad to hear so many of you writing kids into your stories, I had a blast with Jessica. Completely based on my eldest when she was the same age, she is intelligent, inquisitive and so cute! Totally takes Mark's heart on the first glance too, aww!

Mimi, I am smiling like a buffoon! Thank you so much, your words mean the world to me, truly, Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Right, it's 9pm here in the UK so I'll be back in the morning...promise! ; )

R xx

Sharon Buchbinder said...


Be careful, while you're sleeping Laura's vampire might give you a little nibble. But, hey, that could be a good thing!


Sharon (who love love loves Rachel's work!)

Sarah Grimm said...

Great interview ladies!

Rachel- I've always envied those who can write the synopsis before the book. No matter how I try, I just can't do it.

Laura Kaye said...

LOL Sharon--true, though! ;)=

Rachel--sorry for your bad day, but every one of us knows exactly the kind of day you described! ((hugs!))

@Sarah--um, me neither!

Thanks for stopping by, everyone!

Rachel Brimble said...

LOL! Sharon, is it bad that I would love a nibble from one of Laura' heroes (or maybe even give one!)?

Sarah, have you tried it? People think it can't work because they are expecting too much. The first synopsis is little more than an outline to get all those initial thoughts down. After that, you can change it as the book changes and when you've finished, your synopsis should just need tweaking.

See you later, everyone!

R x