It’s beginning to look a lot like……

It’s getting to that time again. I usually have most of my presents bought before 1 December, my cards written and gift bags ready to put the presents in.
This year I am WAY behind. I have a few gifts but not a lot. I have no idea what to get my kids for Christmas this year. We went to Florida on holiday this year and they got some extras then so they understand there won’t be huge presents this year. My youngest…..he’s asked for…..wait for it…..a stool.

Yes, you heard right.

He wants a stool to sit in front of his xbox with. I can hardly contain my excitement at the thought of searching for a stool – and trying to wrap it. My eldest? He’s asked for nothing so far – even when prompted.

Remember when they were little – and you just bought all the Fisher Price toys or the whole selection of Action Men, Wrestlers or Barbie dolls?

The 200 wrestlers (no, I didn’t buy all them, some were inherited and a few bought and added to the collection) have been passed onto a friend with three sons and a wrestler addiction. I’m paying it forward as someone did that for me when my boys loved wrestlers. My days of buying the easy toys are gone.

The one thing I always buy my boys – even though they might not want them – is books. I buy them a few each Christmas in the hope they’ll discover the joy of reading. For a while my eldest did. He loved the Michael Grant series of books and I’m hoping he’ll find another collection to enjoy. My youngest occasionally reads Tom Gates. The two things they always read are the Guinness Book of Records and Ripley’s Believe it or Not – so they will definitely be on the list!

What is your secret gift wish for Christmas? For me, more hours in the day would be useful. Other than that I’ll have a red strap for my apple watch thanks!

How Down and Dirty Do You Like It?

Now, now….minds out of the boudoir my friends (or the office desk, the hospital supplies room or the ridiculously large Egyptian cotton sheeted bed). This time I’m talking about our heroes and heroines and just how tortured their pasts are or aren’t. Romances are, at their heart, meant to be beautiful stories about falling in love and deep heated kisses that make your knees go all wobbly and learning valuable lessons about life, love, ourselves and perhaps even a thrilling new surgical technique in the course of the journey to a Happily Ever After.

My current book has the heroine going through a fair bit of torture that keeps making me burst into tears. I feel so AWFUL for her (and am prone to a bit of melodrama – quelle surprise!). Not really the stuff of romance, is it? But part of love is pain and heartbreak and asking the universe why – A THOUSAND TIMES, WHY? Right? Or is that just me? To counterbalance my heroines plight,  I’ve been fairy dusting a whole load of Christmas magic into the mix to make the teeter totter (see saw?) ride less of a heavy weighted misery trip. I think it works…but I guess the proof will be in the (rum-soaked) Christmas pudding, eh?

mqdefault.jpgWant to have a weep right now? Click HERE.I’m extremely curious about how dark and heavy you like things to go – as writers and as readers. Me? I love a good blub. Sometimes I actively seek out a film that I know will make me sob. When I went to see The Bridges of Madison County – I had to go sneak into a Jackass film afterwards so I’d look less like I’d just been dumped by my boyfriend in the middle of the film. No joke. Rabbit Proof Fence nearly took my sister out. Dehydrated her for a week!

I suppose what it boils down to is I will never – ever, in a million, zillion years – get enough of Triumph Over Adversity stories. I think the human spirit is a resounding powerhouse made of up love and full caps YESES and YOU BETS and It Will Get Betters. But how much can a person take before the turn-around happens? And do you really want it in heavy doses in your beautiful romance novel, or is just a little bit of hardship enough? Be honest – I can take it (and then triumph over adversity after I get all blotchy faced from a monster boo-hoo). Besides – this is why we have so many wonderful, different authors, no? Speak up – can’t wait.

And now for the exciting bit! I don’t have a book out this month (although please feel free to check out any of my three I do have out in the world) – and since I’m just finishing writing a holiday book (for next year) I thought I’d feature our very own Jennifer Taylor’s new book – the magnificently titled Miracle Under the Mistletoe !

’Tis the season for second chances?


Two years ago A&E Consultant Sean Fitzgerald left Molly Daniels broken-hearted. Now he’s back, and the reception she gives him is frostier than the weather! But he’s determined to reveal the truth about his past…

Walking away from Molly was the hardest thing Sean’s ever done, but now she’s within his reach once more he never wants to let her go. Could one magical mistletoe kiss be all he needs to melt her heart and finally show Molly he’s here to stay?

Celebrating 80—A Family Affair

12219538_1084862081523853_2512707319169725415_nThis month my mother celebrated her 80th birthday. I told her I was going to give her a party and asked her what she would like to have. She wanted lunch with the family and a few friends after church on the Sunday before her birthday. That group turned out to be 65 people. Some of the attendees came from as far away as Florida which is a six hour drive one way.

The event was held at a park activity center. Because there was no kitchen available my nephew in law hulled his food trailer there to use as the cooking space. Thankfully, I have a niece with a culinary degree who teaches at a high school. She catered the event. Her students did much of the preparation for the meal. My niece planned a menu of citrus glazed pork loin, roasted potatoes, green beans with bacon, Waldrof salad and rolls. And of course, cake and ice cream.

I handled all the decorations. I made a six foot 80 in 3-D which I painted orange. Happy Birthday was strung across it. Without my mother knowing it, I had gone through her pictures. I found ones of her when she graduated from high school and college. Pictures of my family when I was growing up and some just ten years ago. I had them enlarged to poster size. With the help of my daughter, daughter in law, sister in law and nieces I stationed the pictures and decorations around the room. I also did a table of what had happened in 1935. My mother is the same age as Micky Mouse and the game of Monopoly.

My mother wore a tiara and was the princess of the party. We spent time sharing stories about her and taking family pictures. Mom enjoyed herself and couldn’t say enough about how pleased she was with everything.

I have a Christmas book out this month so I thought I’d share.

one night before Christmas 300

Unwrapping Dr. Reynolds… 

Sports physician Dr. Melanie Hyde is used to being treated as one of the guys—but just sometimes it would be nice to be treated like a woman… 

So when hotshot orthopedic doctor Dalton Reynolds flies in to Niagara Falls, his brooding good looks ignite feelings Mel never even knew existed! 

Dalton’s flight leaves in a few days, and yet after their short but steamy time together Mel knows that she’s already fallen for him. Can she melt Dalton’s heart and convince him to stay…just in time for Christmas?


Books, books and more books.

Got to love reading, but lately I seem to be getting behind. Take a look at the stack by my bed. IMG_6192 IMG_6193Right now I’m too busy writing books to be reading many.

Thank goodness the summer holidays are coming so I should be able to get through a few of these, right? Umm, well, the kids and grandkids are here for the first week, and I am not reading while I’ve got gorgeous wee ones to spoil and have fun with.

Week two close friends are coming to stay. Great, the guys get to go fishing while my girlfriend and I – well, we talk and drink the odd wine or three. We do not read, because my friend, love her to bits, does not read even a paper or magazine, let alone a book. Phew, thank goodness for the third week. Another close friend and her partner are coming, and she and I will fritter away the hours talking, reading, and talking. Oh, and we get creative in the kitchen too.

To add to my reading woes I joined a book group last month after a long time of not doing this. So of course I came home with a small pile, didn’t I? I managed to read The Lost Mona Lisa by RA Scott – absolutely fascinating and great insight into the art world and the crooks of the time. I also read The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins. Another great read and this one kept me turning pages when I should’ve been doing other things.

What have you read lately that’s kept you away from less important things?


Anyone who has had to go through a loved one’s home after they’ve passed knows that, for a lot of reasons, it’s a challenging and difficult task. I’m in the process of going through the home my parents lived in for over 50 years (and I, of course, grew up there) and I’ve barely touched the proverbial tip of the iceberg. Figuring out what to save and what to get rid of is proving to be one of the challenges, but I’m slowly getting there.

My mother was a ‘saver’ – not a hoarder, but someone who kept all kinds of things stashed away forever.  Letters, my old schoolwork, photos galore from when she was a child and before, up to my own children’s pictures she’d taken.  Clippings of all kinds from newspapers and magazines, often with notes attached – in fact, her notes are everywhere – stashed in drawers, inside collectible pottery, stuck in books, and attached to all kinds of things.  Needless to say, I’ve shed a lot of tears going through it all, but there are things that make me smile and laugh, too.  (My school papers and a few letters prove I wrote a lot of goofy things as a kid!) :-)

Today, I’m sharing some of the random treasures (a term used loosely!). I hope you find a few interesting, and maybe one or two that make you smile.  :-)

For many years, my parents had stashed in a closet a stack of old newspapers headlining important events. Here are a few from the WWII Leyte Gulf invasion of the Philippines my father was a part of, and from when JFK was assassinated. Pretty amazing to hold them in your hand as you read the history!  WWIInewspaper JRF hedline

I just found my grandmother’s copy of Gone With The Wind that I vividly remember staying up ALL NIGHT to read at about age 13 when I was staying with her for a weekend. Look at the inside print – pretty light on paragraph breaks, and oddly formatted! Not very inviting, I don’t think, but apparently that didn’t bother me. :-)  I’ve found all kinds of really old books that are fascinating – old cookbooks, gardening books, and novels from the turn of the century that must have belonged to my great-grandmother.  Am really loving looking through them.Gone With The Wind coverGWTW insideHere’s one of the many things I’m not sure what to do with. Wonderful to live in this amazing internet age where we can look up anything that has a mark on the bottom, isn’t it? I typed in markings for this pitcher, and found there are many pieces of this pottery called Corn King. Can’t say I love it, though it is interesting…maybe I need to start an eBay business for stuff like this? ;-)Corn pitcher

Now this, I love. It’s my grandmother’s journal from a trip she took with her sister to Amsterdam, Paris and England in 1965 (born in Bolton, Lancashire, she emigrated from England when she was 21). I adored my grandmother, and this journal is so cute and funny, just like her.  She mentions she bought me a doll in Amsterdam…I so wish I knew which one!  And I’m SO curious – how in the world do you think it’s typewritten?  She obviously wrote it as it happened, not from memory – anyone know if there was some tiny portable typewriter in the 60s?

And this was one of my biggest laughs. I have no idea if my mother was a Baywatch fan, but even if she was, why would she have a poster of David Hasselhoff??  Clearly, ‘manscaping’ wasn’t popular back then – I wish you could see it closer as it’s quite impressive.  :-D

Hasselhoff poster

Then there are the simple things. I used this little cup measure all the time growing up. Then later at Christmas gatherings after I was an adult, and more recently when I’d fix food for my parents sometimes. I never thought about it at all until I was packing up the kitchen and it occurred to me it had to be quite old. Again, I typed its markings – Fire King – into the computer, and found the mark on this one was on glassware from the 1940s, and realized it must have been a wedding gift. That makes it feel like more than just a cup measure to me now :-)
And the teapot? I’ve made more pots of tea in it than I can possibly count. Never thought it was particularly pretty – it was our everyday pot. I’ve learned it’s a Halls teapot, and quite collectible. Thinking of the tea we shared over the years makes me glad to have it.cup measure Teapot, HallsOne more? Part of a very old Monopoly set – the houses and hotels are made of wood. Alas, though, the board itself was ruined years ago when our basement flooded. My father was a crazy expert Monopoly player who loved the game, and getting rid of this part of it feels wrong…*sigh*Monopoly

Do you own anything that makes you think about a grandparent or parent?  That makes you happy or sad or both?  I’d love to hear why it’s meaningful to you.

I have a new release out this month (November) titled HER CHRISTMAS BABY BUMP  It’s part of a four book series, MIDWIVES ON CALL AT CHRISTMAS with Scarlet Wilson, Louisa George and Tina Beckett, whom I thank in my Dear Reader introduction (below). They were hugely helpful to me, as I hadn’t written a continuity before.  Thanks again, ladies! :-)


The Joys of November in southern Down Under

Spring paddocks and canola

Spring paddocks and canola

I live in the south-eastern part of Australia and much to the surprise of many overseas visitors, we get cold weather. Sure, it isn’t northern hemisphere cold, although it did snow on the beach once for an hour(!) however, compared to my northern Australian friends, I live in a temperate zone. This means for a teeny tiny part of the year, for two of the three months of spring it is GREEN! :-)

My garden is emerald. It won’t last long but for now I am loving it and the spring roses. I’ve planted rhubarb, strawberries, lettuces and updated the herb garden. We’ve mulched and pruned and now DH is cleaning the pavers around the pool for that first hot day that will turn my emerald green to burnt brown. Given the forecast, that may be today!

So please enjoy my garden while it’s green and under the photos is my cover reveal for my next medical romance :-) Do you have a favourite rose?

Sentimental rose

Sentimental rose


My favourite, Mr Lincoln. The perfume is AMAZING!

IMG_20151107_163132 IMG_1174 IMG_1176

Not a rose but I am excited that my Bird of Paradise has finally flowered. My garden is a bit too shady!

Not a rose but I am excited that my Bird of Paradise has finally flowered. My garden is a bit too shady!


81ydVW4HKpL._SL1500_WOOT! I have a cover for A Daddy For Baby Zoe? my next Harlequin Medical Romance which is released on January 1st 2016 :-) It’s up for pre-order all over the place and you can find buy links here  along with an excerpt. To peak your interest, I have a special Pinterest board. You can see the little penguins, the fishing fleet, and the actors who inspired Meredith and Raf :-)

And what do you think of the cover? I just adore that baby! It tugs on my heartstrings :-)

My Medicine River series, set in glorious Montana, is still getting grFiona Lowe ARRA adeat reviews so if you haven’t caught up with it yet, now might be the time :-) Montana Actually and Truly Madly Montana, are available in mass market paperback and eBook format.

Unlocking Her Surgeon’s Heart, a Harlequin Mills & Boon medical romance is out in the world. If you enjoy the TV series, Call the Midwife, you’ll love this book. It’s part of the Midwives-on-Call series and my story is set in a small rural town. Lilia is the midwife and the last thing she needs is a grumpy, city surgeon trying to throw his weight around. Buy links are here.

I hang out a bit on Facebook and Twitter if you’d like to join me there.

I’m currently reading The Lake House by Kate Morton. I hope your November has plenty of time for reading!

Fiona x

Just a little bit of noise!

Tonight is Bonfire Night. It’s one of those traditions that I never really took to as a child, because when the evening of November 5th came around I’d become attached to the Guy we’d made and hated the idea of burning him. But what can I say.  Any excuse to make a bit of noise.

Which brings me to another British tradition, just as odd in its way. Understatement. It’s not something that I’m aware of doing, but when I look at my own writing style, I have to admit to being guilty as charged.  A bit of noise? What I really meant was that there was an almighty racket going on outside tonight.

Understatement has been a national habit for some time. It’s common in Old English Poetry, featuring heavily in Beowulf, and has threaded through our literature ever since. A guide to ‘what the British really mean’ has been doing the rounds on the internet for a while now and gives examples like this…

‘We say – That’s a very brave proposal
We mean – You are insane
Everyone else thinks we mean – He thinks I have courage

We say – I was a bit disappointed that
We mean – I am annoyed that
Everyone else thinks we mean – It doesn’t matter’

But here’s the thing.  Understatement isn’t a wish to deceive, or even necessarily a wish to be polite.  If someone tells me that I’ve made a brave proposal, I’m under no illusions. I know full well they think I’m insane. And if I say that I’m feeling just a little bit peeved about something, then I expect everyone to know that I’m about to throw a tantrum. And, of course, the greater the understatement, the sharper the meaning. Feeling peeved about something is a relatively mild emotion. Feeling just a little bit peeved, is much stronger stuff.

And maybe it’s not so divisive after all.  As readers we all ‘hear’ voices from around the world.  I enjoy that difference in texture, and it doesn’t confuse me.  And as a writer, there are times when I have to control my yen for understatement.  My characters are often far more forthright than I am.

Do you have a preference? A little understatement, or a bolder style?

I’ve no current English language releases to show you this time, but am thrilled to have stories included in two anthologies released in Germany, this October and November. Look at these beautiful covers!