Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Island Time is All the Time…

My dad was in the Navy so, for some of my childhood, we moved every couple of years and one of those moves was to a little island far off the west coast of the USA called…Oahu. We had been living in the Pacific Northwest (which I later discovered was the SAME TOWN Debbie Macomber lived in and used as inspiration for her wonderful Cedar Cove books) and arrived in this place called Waikiki. It was hot and the sand burnt our little shoe-loving tootsies and our pale Pacific Northwestern skin was quickly red as a crab and, overall, my siblings and I (all under the age of ten) were ungrateful little so and sos until we discovered the joys of jumping in the sea and not instantly going numb (I’m sure those of you who live in Scotland will also appreciate this).

Our poor attitude were quickly regrouped and soon we all loved it. This was Hawaii some time ago, but as I discovered on my belated honeymoon (ten years ago now!) there are elements of it that are exactly the same. The speed limit maxes out at 50mph. There is a downpour near enough eery morning, but nothing so horrid as to dim the delights of the beach. Hanama Bay, where I learned to snorkel seems to have even more wildlife than I remembered because it’s now a protected park with timed entries to make sure everyone, including the turtles who swim around the shore, all have ample room.

I just wrote a book called Hawaiian Medic to Rescue His Heart and writing it was sheer joy – one of those truly happy trips down memory lane. Not only did I revisit my honeymoon, I revisited my childhood and found myself happily slipping into island time…that relaxed pace where you simply have to believe everything will get done as and when it’s supposed to. A bit like believing you’ll find your one true love I suppose. And what better place to fall in love than a tropical island where time takes on another dimension?

Also – I’m going to be honest with you here – really honest. Even though it was invented in Canada…I am a HUGE fan of the Hawaiian pizza. Judge me if you will…but nothing beats that magical combination of salty ham and sweet juicy hot pineapple on a deeeee-licious pizza crust. In fact – it’s not even 6AM as I write this and already I know what I want for supper tonight.

So get yourself a snack, grab your next travel-inspired M&B/Harlequin and slip into island time as your book whisks you away to another world of love and romance. (What did you eat? I love snacking and reading!) ALOHA MY FRIENDS! xxx

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Top 5 Procrastination Activities for Writers

We all know that writing a novel is hard. Sure, it’s fun, but it’s also a tough mental exercise, involving hours of mulling over delicate plot lines, playing with dialogue we’ve only ever heard in our heads, and way too much solo time staring into a screen. Oh and coffee.

This past week I finally submitted another manuscript, but believe me, getting to the part where I typed THE END took a lot of effort. And a lot more procrastination. If you’re anything like me, writing a Harlequin novel takes hours and hours of procrastination.

How many of these can you relate to?

1.  VEGAN BACON, YOU SAY?

So I’m halfway through a chapter. I take a break to Google a medical condition I’ve only ever vaguely heard of, yet somehow have to convey depth, wisdom and compassion about. Somehow along the way I click on a targeted ad for Vegan Bacon seasoning. Leaving my characters fully in the lurch with their mysterious medical condition, instead I learn everything there is to know about fake bacon seasoning. Free shipping too, you say? Well that’s me sold!

2.  JUST ONE MORE LAP AROUND THE BLOCK, MUM!

I only have 2,000 more words to write today but my dog keeps giving me those puppy eyes: “Mama what are you dooooo-ing? Let’s go walk, let’s go play!”

I can’t leave her thinking I’m abandoning her, so… oh go on, just one more treat. Oh, alright, just one more belly rub. Oh, OK fine you cutie pie, just one more little walk. Oh, you want to go round the block again? OK, why not? The park now, too? Fine, have it your way.

Forty-five minutes later…. Damn, now it’s too late to work. It’s your fault, dog, not mine.

3.  IS MY BREAD LOAF PILLOW STILL AVAILABLE?

I really should do a grammar check on that last chapter, but right now I just need to go into my Amazon shopping cart and check my list of emergency fun items is all in order. Thankfully they have not run out of Burrito Tortilla Wrap Blankets. Also still available is the hot pink LED night light which activates automatically when you approach the toilet bowl. I do need to keep an eye on the popular 3D-printed bread loaf pillow, though, because I’d hate for that to sell out before I really need it.

BREAD PILLOW

4. DID I MISS A SPOT OVER THERE?

I must go over that page of dialogue one more time. But first, I really must investigate what that smell could be, every time I open the fridge. Yes, OK yes it’s been a little iffy all week, but if I don’t check it out now – before I edit one page, not after – it could get much, much worse. Actually, while I’m here, chucking out two-week old bananas, I may as well strip the whole fridge bare and give all the shelves a good scrub. While I’m on a roll, why not vacuum the rug again, too?

5.  I COULD TOTALLY CULTIVATE AN INDOOR GARDEN

Just the final edit to go now. I could easily get it done in a day but I’ll stretch it over three by combining the task with cultivating an indoor herb garden. Just to break it up a bit you know; give my fresh ideas some time to marinate (in Vegan Bacon seasoning?) Three hours is just long enough to research exactly which herbs are likely to take if I plant them on my windowsill, and which one might kill my dog.

Before I even get to editing I’ll have nineteen plant pots, ten packs of seeds, a heating pad and fertiliser landing on my doorstep via Amazon. Not a bad day’s work. Not the work I planned to do… but work nonetheless.

So there you go, the top 5 ways I procrastinated this time, prior to hitting that ‘send’ button and firing my novel off to my lovely editor. How do you procrastinate, lovely readers?

What’s that, you don’t? OK… in that case, please teach me your ways. All suggestions welcome 😉

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Reunions, by Emma Marnell, from the Medical Romance Editorial Team

As the world begins to reopen, many people are getting their first chance (at least here in the UK) to reunite with their loved ones, be it family or friends. For me, personally, my family are all based in Ireland and it has been most challenging being so close – geographically – but feeling so far away from them over the past few months. However, I am finally getting the chance to reunite with them this week after eight long months and I cannot wait.

As terrible as the pandemic has been, I feel as though it has taught us a very important lesson of not taking life or people for granted. It feels as though people have begun to appreciate the little things in life again, there is a spirit of togetherness in the air at the moment and I for one am here for it!

I have been counting down the days until I could reunite with my family, as I am sure many of you have with your loved ones too. In the meantime, I have been delving deep into some reunion romances to get that feeling of togetherness and unconditional love flowing. If you are looking for some reunion romances like me, or just some epic romances in general, then here are just some that I have read that pulled on my heart strings this summer…

 

First up is Second Chance in Barcelona by Fiona McArthur, where a midwife breaks all of her own rules when she is drawn into the world of a stranger, she once spent an impulsive night of passion with!  

Fiona

 

In Reunited with Her Secret Prince by Susanne Hampton, Dr Daniel returns but is keeping a secret…

Susanne

 

Falling Again for the Animal Whisperer by Becky Wicks, because who doesn’t love a romance with a hot vet!

Becky

 

Reunited with the Heart Surgeon by Janice Lynn hits all the right notes if a fated love affair is what you’re looking for.

Janice

 

Last but certainly not least, Reunited with His Long-Lost Nurse by Charlotte Hawkes is coming very soon, and I promise it will be worth the wait!

Charlotte

 

Wishing you all a wonderful summer of reunions.

Emma x

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

The Love to Write Competition is open!

Harlequin and Mills & Boon continue their efforts toward diversity, inclusion, and representation, and I’m so here for it! Along with initiatives such as #RomanceIncludesYou pitch events, Carina’s Adores line, and a scholarship program, last year the company also created a mentorship program. The Romance Includes You Mentorship program for underrepresented authors had over 160 applications and, after whittling that number down to eleven, author Sera Taíno was the first recipient. Her debut novel, A Delicious Dilemma goes on sale in September 2021!

A Delicious Dilemma

Earlier in July came the announcement of Love to Write, a competition for unpublished authors from underrepresented ethnic backgrounds who live in the UK and Ireland.

From the website:

The winner of Love to Write will receive a one-book contract with Mills & Boon, a grant to support their writing, and a one-year mentorship with a Mills & Boon/Harlequin editor to help them develop their submission into a full, publishable romance novel. This competition aims to find new romance novels by writers from underrepresented ethnic backgrounds that bring more diverse characters and perspectives to the romance genre.

With initiatives like this, I’m sure we’ll be seeing a lot of new and exciting authors publishing through Harlequin/Mills & Boon, and I can hardly wait.

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Happy Places

Sorry, I’m a little late getting this blog post up today. I was in my happy place and lost track of time. Where is this place? It’s my bed. No, not that bed. It’s one of my flower beds!

Those flowery spaces just call to me and tempt me with beautiful colors and greenery and…weeds. Ugh. Well that’s a subject for another post. But I was outside weeding after a rain (when the soil is soft and gives up those pesky roots a little easier).

The garden is my happy place. And once I’m done with the watering and the weeding and the chores, I like to take a few minutes to lie in one of my hammocks and admire the beauty outside. A drink and a cool breeze and it becomes paradise.

My happy place. There’s nowhere I’d rather be.

What about you? Where’s your happy place? Do you like traveling? Hiking? Cooking? What makes you lose track of time?

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

A picture is worth a thousand words, at least it is to me. I’m a very visual writer. Even when I’m creating a fictional town or home, I have to draw it out on paper so that I can get it in my head to write. I use the internet and Pinterest to get ideas. Right now in Pinterest I have a very inspiring file labeled Helicopter Crew.

But sometimes there’s nothing like seeing the real thing. That’s why when I got the idea to write some books in Key West around a medical helicopter crew, I knew I had to do some personal research.

First, I started at my own back door (actually it’s on the roof at the hospital where I work).

One of the crews from Air Methods in Pensacola, Florida was nice enough to give me a tour.

But I still didn’t feel like I was prepared to take on the task. With a wedding anniversary coming up, I used it as a great excuse to travel to Key West. It’s an amazing little island that is only 4.2 miles long and 1 mile wide. The southernmost city of the United States, it has a colorful history of pirates and treasure ship hunters. While the weather wasn’t the best, I did manage to get out and tour the historical district and take some pictures.

Home of Ernest Hemingway

Banyan Tree
Our hotel

It was an amazing trip and I came back with lots of ideas that I plan to use as I give the men and women of my helicopter crew a wild ride as they take the trip of their lifetime that ends with their own happily ever after.

Book Awards, The Writing Life

Celebrating the Nomination by Fiona Lowe

Down here in Australia, it’s winter and the *&%#@! virus has reared its ugly head again as it does in cold weather. This means the annual Romance Writers of Australia’s conference will be impacted …perhaps we should move it to November when it’s warm!

BUT we need to focus on the positives so I’m doing that. I’m excited and honoured that readers have nominated JUST AN ORDINARY FAMILY as a RUBY finalist in the ‘romantic elements’ section. I have a rule whenever I’m nominated for anything– I celebrate it. Why? Because a win is never a given, in fact I never expect it, hence the celebration of the nom. I know the win is unlikely as I’ve been nominated many times and I’ve only won it once! I’m also excited because I adored writing Alice’s story as she navigates the many pitfalls of online dating.

I did a lot of research for this. I spoke to many family members and close friends who have met their current partner online. I heard the good, the bad and the ugly stories. I also went through the process of signing up to see how each website and app operates, how they differ, how they are similar, but I promise you, I never swiped left or right or engaged with anyone. Most hilarious story was when my sons found one app on my phone. The husband knew all about it they were away at uni. FBut it was a fascinating piece of method research! As a result, a lot happens to Alice during the book which starts in January and ends in December. It was Alice’s story that tips the book into romantic elements because the other relationships in the book are not quite as rosy. I turn the spotlight onto female friendship, which isn’t always as supportive and caring as we hope. I see you nodding there right along with me … I’m also excited as Alice’s sister, Libby is a GP cos in some ways, I haven’t strayed all that far from my MedRom roots 🙂

Whether or not I get to to go the conference or if I am watching the awards on Zoom, I will be cheering Alice because I truly fell in love with her grit and determination, not just in the dating stakes, but in turning her life around after it fell apart without warning.

Intrigued? You can read chapter one here or download a sample from your fave book store. The links are here. and the good news is, no matter where you live, you can buy JUST AN ORDINARY FAMILY in print, ebook or listen on audio. The only difference is the cover and the world edition has US spelling and I’ve translated a few Aussie sayings. Australians get the full Aussie lingo!

How do you celebrate a nomination? Or good news or anything wonderful? Fill me in!

For information on all my books head over to fionalowe.com. Want a free novella to read? Join my newsletter at fionalowe.com Stay safe and happy reading!! Fiona x

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Seize the day!

Whatever the day is, it’s a National Day for something, somewhere in the world.  I love the idea that we set aside days, weeks or months to think about special things and issues because in the rush of everyday life I don’t always think to look beyond what’s next on my to-do list.  And I love that some of these days are celebrated around the world, Earth Day is a lot more than just turning the lights out at 8.30pm, but it’s amazing to feel that people all around the world are doing so in a kind of Mexican wave which spreads around the globe.

And alongside the days when we’re called upon to remember or to act, there are fun days.  I’ve picked out my top ten (if you want to see a longer list there’s a great one at Time and Date dot com which gives lots of ideas).

January 1st  Polar Bear Plunge Day  Well this isn’t one that we’ll be celebrating on the banks of the Thames anytime soon.  But we’re not completely discouraged by our lack of polar bears and in the UK New Year’s day is the time when traditionally groups of hardy people take a plunge in the sea to see the New Year in.  Not something I’ll be taking part in for the foreseeable future 🙂

January 15th  Strawberry Ice Cream Day  This is a day which originated in the US.  But what’s not to like about strawberry ice cream?  Of course it should have its own day!

February 10th  National Umbrella Day  Another day that originated in the U.S., but I can’t help feeling that this really should belong to the rainy UK at the moment.  I’ve lost count of the number of umbrellas I’ve left on the train or lost and then found again, and I have a good selection of them to celebrate with.

March 1st  World Compliment Day  This is an unofficial holiday, but what a good idea!  Spread a little happiness.

March 8th  Proofreading Day  That one speaks for itself!  And ‘The Wicked Bible’, published in 1631 by the royal printers of London shows just how important it is – their proofreaders failed to spot a mistake in Exodus chapter 20, where the ‘not’ was left out of ‘Thou shalt not commit adultery’.  The printers were fined £300 for letting this through and deprived of their printing license.

May 1st  Batman Day  I grew up learning how to dance around a maypole for May Day, which generally ended up with someone being tied up in the streamers after making a wrong move.  How much more fun would it have been in Batman capes?

May 14th-25th  Nettle Week  Which just goes to show that everything has its part to play, even the humble stinging nettle, which has a whole week!

August 1st  Sisters Day  Celebrate our sisters!  The ones we were born with, and the ones we’ve adopted along the way 🙂

August 13th  International Left Handers Day  I grew up as the only rightie in a whole family of lefties – so in truth most days were left handers day at our house 🙂  But it’s one of those things it’s easy not to think about if it doesn’t have its own day – how many things around us are arranged to be convenient for righties but awkward for lefties.

Second Tuesday in October  Ada Lovelace Day  This one has a more serious theme, to encourage girls to pursue their interest in science and technology.  Go Ada!

I’ve already chosen ten, and it’s only October.  So sadly I can’t mention ‘Men make Dinner Day’ on the 4th November, or ‘Pretend to be a Time Traveller Day’ on the 8th December.  My own suggestion for a fun National Day?  Is there a ‘Have Breakfast in Bed’ day?  If not I think there really should be.  I’ll send a copy of my latest release, ‘Falling for the Brooding Doc’ in exchange for the best idea!

julymedical5

Going for gold is nothing…

…compared to winning his heart

For injured doctor and championship rower, Laurie Sullivan, pushing herself to the limit is all she’s ever known. But enigmatic Dr. Ross Summerby knows she’s not taking her injury seriously. His shock tactic threat of eviction from his exclusive rehabilitation clinic, unless she focuses on her treatment and helps with some of his patients, works wonders. But the unexpected connection between them, soon makes Laurie dream of a very different future!

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels, New Releases

July New Releases

Happy July! I’m swimming in boxes, but it’s another month and that means a bunch more new releases!

And a congratulations to Tina Beckett on her 40th book!

The Paramedic’s Secret Son by Rachel Dove

He thought he had to leave…
…Now he has two reasons to stay!
Eight years ago, paramedic Harry walked away from Annabel, knowing that it would break both of their hearts but that staying would only hurt her more. Now Harry has returned to discover that Annabel wasn’t the only one he left behind—he has a seven-year-old son! Knowing he’s a father makes him even more determined to win Annabel—and little Aidan—back…

Stolen Nights with the Single Dad by Alison Roberts

Following your heart…
is worth the risk!
When GP Andrew Mitchell signed up for an emergency responders training course, he never expected to leave with a certificate and a night of memories with instructor Jenna Armstrong! Returning to reality, Andrew juggles work with being a single dad, but staying focused is impossible with Jenna invading his thoughts. Their worlds are poles apart, and on paper they should never work, but Andrew isn’t ready to let Jenna go…

How to Win the Surgeon’s Heart by Tina Beckett

Things are heating up…
…in their Caribbean paradise!
For Dr. Nate, work is everything. Without him, his renowned hospital wouldn’t exist! Now he’s ready to step up to the plate—again!—as nearby St. Victoria Hospital faces a staff shortage. Surgeon Sasha is beyond grateful for the help, but she’s not so sure about Nate… Her heart’s been broken by wealthy and far-too-attractive men before! Can Nate prove to Sasha he’s different?
A The Island Clinic novel
 
The Island Clinic quartet
Book 1 – How to Win the Surgeon’s Heart by Tina Beckett
Book 2 – Caribbean Paradise, Miracle Family by Julie Danvers
Book 3 – The Princess and the Pediatrician by Annie O’Neil
Book 4 – Reunited with His Long-Lost Nurse by Charlotte Hawkes

Fling with the Children’s Heart Doctor by Becky

Will she find a new home…
…In the surgeon’s arms?
For Dr. Freya Grey, spending six months working with Amsterdam’s leading children’s cardiac surgeon, Lucas Van de Berg, proves a delicious distraction from painful memories. But knowing that she can’t stay in the city that haunts her, Freya is torn between her head and her heart. Lucas has shown her Amsterdam in a new light…but is that enough to make her want to stay?

Falling for the Brooding Doc by Annie Claydon

Going for gold is nothing…
…compared to winning his heart
For injured doctor and championship rower Laurie Sullivan, pushing herself to the limit is all she’s ever known. But enigmatic Dr. Ross Summerby knows she’s not taking her injury seriously. His shock tactic threat of eviction from his exclusive rehabilitation clinic unless she focuses on her treatment and helps with some of his patients works wonders. But the unexpected connection between them soon makes Laurie dream of a very different future!

Caribbean Paradise, Miracle Family by Julie Danvers

His shocking revelation…
…for the single mom!
For nurse Willow Thompson, taking on parenthood alone certainly wasn’t easy, but her daughter, Maisie, is her world…and life on St. Victoria is near perfect. Only, everything changes when jaw-droppingly handsome Dr. Theo Moore strolls along the beach and into their lives—to tell Willow that he’s her daughter’s biological father! And now that he’s able, he’s determined to be there…for them both.
The Island Clinic novel
 
The Island Clinic quartet
Book 1 – How to Win the Surgeon’s Heart by Tina Beckett
Book 2 – Caribbean Paradise, Miracle Family by Julie Danvers
Book 3 – The Princess and the Pediatrician by Annie O’Neil
Book 4 – Reunited with His Long-Lost Nurse by Charlotte Hawkes

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Some Exciting News!

We’ve heard some exciting news, and we’d like to help spread it around!  The Lights on Knockbridge Lane by Roan Parrish is Harlequin’s first ever gay romance novel in a series line, and will be published in October 2021.  In the meantime, if you want to know more about Roan Parrish’s writing, her favourite romance tropes, and what’s on her must read/watch list, check out her author interview on the Write for Harlequin website.

The Lights on Knockbridge Lane is the third book in the Garnet Run miniseries.  Books one and two in the series, Better than People and Best Laid Plans are available now from Carina Press, and you can find them here.   Don’t you just love this gorgeous cover!

y404-1Can one man’s crowded, messy life fill another man’s empty heart?

Raising a family was always Adam Mills’ dream, although solo parenting and moving back to tiny Garnet Run certainly were not. After a messy breakup, Adam is doing his best to give his young daughter the life she deserves—including accepting help from their new, reclusive neighbor to fulfill her Christmas wish.

Though the little house may not have “the most lights ever,” the Mills home begins to brighten as handsome Wes Mobray spends more time there and slowly sheds his protective layers. But when the eye-catching house ends up in the news, Wes has to make a choice: hide from the darkness of his unusual past or embrace the light of a future—and a family—with Adam.

From Harlequin Special Edition: Believe in love. Overcome obstacles. Find happiness.