Excerpts, Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels, Hot Docs!, New Releases

Excerpt from Forbidden to the Playboy Surgeon by Fiona Lowe

London

Being invited to be part of the Paddington Children’s Hospital series was an honour and it was great to work closely with a group of medical romance authors. Forbidden to the Playboy Surgeon is the second book in the series and there’s a nice twist. I have an uptight Australian female surgeon matched against a laid-back British neurosurgeon. Claire and Alistair are chalk and cheese but they have valid reasons for their different approaches to life, but that doesn’t stop them from rubbing each other up the wrong way.  I hope you enjoy getting to know the two of them. Here is an excerpt from Chapter Three.

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Alistair high-fived Tristan Lewis-Smith. ‘Way to go, Tris,’ he said with a grin.

The kid had just whooped him at virtual tennis— twice— but he didn’t care. He was too busy rejoicing in the fact that the ten-year-old had been seizure free for a week. That hadn’t happened in two years and it was moments like these that reminded him that what he did each day mattered. Hell, it reinforced his mantra that each day mattered and life should be lived to the full.

He’d almost lost the opportunity to do that and when he’d woken up in the coronary care unit, he’d vowed never to forget how life could change in a heartbeat— or the lack of one as the case may be— and how close he’d come to death. He’d been blessed with a second chance and he never took it for granted. He was thrilled to be able to give Tristan a second chance at a normal life.

‘Right-oh, mate.’ He pulled down the sheet and patted the centre of the bed. ‘Time to tuck in and pretend to read or the night sister will have my guts for garters.’

Full of beans and far from quiet, Tristan bounced onto the bed. ‘You’re just saying that because you’re scared if you play another game I’ll beat you. Again.’

‘There is that,’ Alistair said with a grin. ‘Hurry up, I’ve got somewhere I need to be.’

Tristan scrambled under the covers. ‘Nurse Saunders said you couldn’t stay long because you’ve got a hot date.’

‘Did she now?’ Funny that Lindsay appeared to know more about this hot date than he did. He found himself automatically tucking the sheet around the little boy only this time an odd feeling of something akin to emptiness accompanied it.

He immediately shook off the feeling. He had no reason what so ever to feel empty or lonely. Life was good. He had a job he loved and a spacious and light-filled apartment just off the Portobello Road that he’d filled with curios from his world travels. Three years ago, he’d added to his property portfolio and bought a pretty stone cottage surrounded by fields of lavender in Provence. When he was there, he revelled in the sensory delights of sunshine, hearty Mediterranean food and great wine. He visited at least once a month either alone or with companionship depending on whether or not the woman he was dating was still focussed on having fun. The moment a woman started dropping hints about “taking things to the next level” she was no longer welcome in France. Or in Notting Hill for that matter.

He loved women but he didn’t do next levels. It was better to break a heart in the early days, well before things got serious, than to risk shattering a life, or worse, lives. His childhood was a case in point and on top of that devastation no one ever knew precisely the duration of a second chance.

Surprised by the unexpected direction his musings had taken him— he didn’t do dark thoughts and he certainly wasn’t known for them— he left Tristan’s room and contemplated the hour. It wasn’t quite eight. As it was a Thursday night there’d be a sizeable hospital crowd at the Frog and Peach and he’d be welcomed with open arms for his dart skills. Oddly, the thought didn’t entice. He had an overwhelming urge to do something completely different. Something wild that would make him feel alive.

Parkouring in the dark?

    Alive not dead, thank you very much.

    Still, parkouring in daylight this coming weekend was worth investigating. He pulled out his phone and had just brought up a browser when he heard, ‘G’day, Alistair.’

Astonished, he spun around at the sound of the broad Australian accent. Although he’d heard Claire Mitchell use the informal Aussie greeting with other people, she’d always been far more circumspect with him. Well, with the exception of one or two lapses. In general, he knew she tried to be polite with him and that she found it a struggle. Did it make him a bad person that he enjoyed watching her keep herself in check? The woman was always buttoned up so tightly it wasn’t surprising she cracked every now and then.

Now she stood in front of him with her hands pressed deep into the pockets of her once starched, but now very end-of-day limp, doctor’s coat. Her hair was pulled back into its functional ponytail and a hot pink stethoscope was slung around her neck. A tiny koala clung to her security lanyard along with a small pen on retractable elastic. Her utilitarian white blouse and medium length black skirt were unremarkable except that the skirt revealed those long shapely legs that taunted him.

Her feet were tucked into bright red shoes with a wide strap that crossed her instep just below her ankle and culminated in a large red button that drew the eye. He suddenly understood completely why Victorian Gentlemen had waxed lyrical over a fleeting glimpse of a fine ankle.

He scanned her face, looking for clues as to why she was suddenly attempting a colloquial greeting with him. ‘G’day, yourself,’ he intoned back with a fair crack at an Aussie accent.

Behind her sexy-librarian style glasses, her eyes did that milk and dark chocolate swirly thing he always enjoyed and— Good Lord. Was she blushing?

‘Do you have a minute?’ she asked, quickly pushing her glasses up her nose as they continued walking toward the lifts.

‘Always. Problem?’

‘Um,’ she surreptitiously glanced along the corridor taking in the nurses’ station that was teaming with staff. She suddenly veered left into the treatment room.

Utterly intrigued by this uncharacteristic behaviour, he followed. ‘Shall I close the door?’

She tugged hard at some stray strands of her hair before pushing them behind her ears. ‘Thanks.’

He closed the door and flicked the blinds to the closed position before leaning back against the wide bench. Claire stood a metre or more away, her plump lips deliciously red. He shifted his gaze and— Damn it! His eyes caught on a fluttering pulse beating at the base of her throat. She really had the most gloriously long, smooth neck that just begged to be explored.

That as may be, but remember most of the time she’s a pain in the ass. Not to mention, she’s your trainee.

‘Alistair,’ she started purposefully and then stopped.

‘Claire.’ He couldn’t help teasing back. He’d never seen her at a loss before and it was deliciously refreshing.

She took in such a deep breath that her breasts rose, stressing the button he was pretty certain sat just above her bra line. Was it delicate sheer lace or plainly utilitarian? It was his experience plain women often wore the sexiest underwear.

With that mouth, she’s hardly plain.

As if on cue, the tip of her tongue peeked out, flicking the bow of her top lip.

His blood leapt.

She cleared her throat. ‘I hope you won’t take this the wrong way but…’

Trying to look utterly unaffected by her, he cocked one brow and reminded himself of the times she’d been critical of him. ‘My sensibilities haven’t stopped you from giving me your opinion before.’

This time she definitely blushed but somehow she managed to wrestle her embarrassment under control with dignity. ‘True, but that was work. This doesn’t exactly fall into that category. Although I suppose it does technically if you—’

‘You’re babbling,’ he said hoping it would force her to focus. At the same time, he had an absurd and unexpected need to rescue her from herself.

Her head jerked up so fast he was worried her neck might snap but then she hit him with a gimlet stare. He forced himself not to squirm as an unsettling feeling trickled through him. Did she see straight through the man he liked to show the world? Had she glimpsed the corner edge of the bubbling mess he kept securely sealed away?

‘As the head of the department of neurosurgery,’ she said tightly, ‘I think it’s important you lead by example and attend the Spring Fling.’

The Spring Fling? Surely he’d misheard. ‘You mean the neurosurgery spring symposium?’

She shook her head and once again the blush bloomed on her cheeks. She swallowed and that damn tongue of hers darted out to moisten her lips. This time as the zip of heat hit him, he pushed off the bench to try and shake it off.

‘I mean the fundraising ball,’ she said slowly as if the words were being reluctantly pulled out of her.

He couldn’t resist. ‘Are you inviting me to the ball?’

Her eyes widened in consternation. ‘No!’ For a moment, indignation spun around her before fading with a sigh and a fall of her shoulders. ‘I mean perhaps. Yes. In a manner of speaking.’

His mouth twitched. ‘It’s good to know you’re so decisive.’

Her chin shot up jabbing the air. ‘You can tease me all you like, Mr— Alistair, but you know as well as I do that at the bare minimum there should a neurosurgery staff table at the ball.’

Damn it to hell. She was absolutely right but how had she found out he wasn’t going? He’d been keeping that bit of information on the down low more out of embarrassment than anything else. A couple of months ago, just before Claire had arrived, he’d had a particularly tough day. He’d lost a patient— a two year-old boy with a brainstem glioma— and for some reason he’d avoided the sympathetic eyes of his staff at the Frog and Peach. He’d hit a trendy bar in Soho instead and in retrospect, he’d consumed one whiskey too many.

It had been enough to scramble his usually accurate crazy-woman detector. As a result, he’d allowed himself to be tempted by the Amazonian features of Lela. The thirty year-old was a fitness instructor as well as being a part-time security guard. They’d had a lot of fun together until he’d realised her possessive streak wasn’t limited to bedroom games.

He knew the ball committee had flagged the idea of auctioning off the chairs next to eligible bachelors. Usually he’d have been fine with the concept and embraced it, but he’d been worried Lela might turn up and cause a nasty public spectacle. Or worse, buy the ticket. To save himself and the hospital embarrassment he’d decided not to attend the ball but to make a sizeable donation to the cause instead. The only person he’d mentioned this plan to was Dominic.

Stupid! Stupid, Stupid. The paediatric trauma surgeon had obviously broken the bro-code and told Victoria. What was it about a man in love that made him prepared to throw his mate under the bus just to stay in sweet with his lady? Now the i-dotting and t-crossing Claire Mitchell was calling him out on a perceived lack of social etiquette.

He ploughed his hand through his hair. God, he’d been raised on etiquette and the irony that an Australian with their supposedly class-less society was reminding him of his social responsibilities almost made him laugh. Perhaps he could turn this whole Lela-and-the-ball mess around and use it to his advantage.

‘Let me get this straight,’ he said with a lazy smile. ‘You’re prepared to spend an evening with me just to make sure I do the right thing?’

This time she was the one to raise an eyebrow. ‘As your 2IC, I can’t expect you to attend the ball if I’m not prepared to attend.’

‘Ah, yes, that sucker duty gets you every time.’

She stiffened. ‘But it seems you’re often immune.’

Ouch. Her words tried to scratch him like the sharp tip of a knife but he didn’t need to justify himself to her. He was very well aware of his duty. Ironically, duty had arrived in a rush just after he’d vowed to make the most of every new day that had been gifted to him. It was the juxtaposition of his life.

‘None of us are immune, Claire. It’s just I try to have a bit of fun with duty and not take it too seriously.’

She narrowed her eyes, ‘And you’re inferring that I don’t have fun?’

Not that I’ve seen. ‘Have you had any fun since arriving in London?’

She looked momentarily nonplussed. ‘I…um…yes. Of course.’

Liar. But he was planning on having some fun with her right now and killing two birds with one stone. ‘Excellent. I can certainly promise you fun at the ball. Especially considering how you’ve gone above and beyond the call of duty and bought the seat next to me.’

‘What?’ She paled, her expression momentarily aghast and then she rallied. ‘I don’t get paid enough for that.’

‘Brutal.’ He exaggeratedly slapped his chest in the general area of his heart, his long fingers grazing the lower edge of his pacemaker. ‘And here I was thinking I was your date. I tell you what. I’ll pay for both of our tickets.’

‘That won’t be necess—’

‘It’s the least I can do,’ he interrupted, waving away her protest. ‘I imagine it was Victoria who dropped you right in it.’

She grimaced. ‘You’re not wrong there.’

He made a huffing sound more at the absent Dominic than her. ‘The good thing is you’ll be saving me from having to play nice all evening.’

Effrontery streaked across her face. ‘Well, when you put it like that, I can hardly wait,’ she said drily.

Her sarcasm was unexpected and delightfully refreshing and he heard himself laugh. He wasn’t used to a woman viewing an evening with him as a trial. The women he dated erred on the appreciative side and often went to great lengths to make him happy. Not Claire Mitchell.

A streak of anticipation shot threw him. Without realizing, she’d just thrown down a challenge. He wasn’t totally convinced she was capable of having fun and he had a sudden urge to know what she looked like when she was in the midst of a good time.

She’d smile like she did when you let her operate solo. Remember how you felt then?

    He disregarded the warning that it was probably unwise to be looking forward to the ball quite this much.

‘So will you be picking me—’ His phone rang with the ICU ringtone and as he pulled it from his pocket, Claire’s pager beeped.

‘North,’ he said answering the call just as Claire mouthed to him ‘ICU?’

Listening to the nurse on the other end of the line, he nodded at Claire and opened the treatment room door. As she walked quickly past him, her crisp scent of the sea drifted back to him and he was suddenly back on Bondi Beach when his life had been simpler and with few restraints placed upon it.

‘We’re on our way,’ he told the worried nurse. Stepping out into the corridor, he followed Claire down the fire escape, taking the fastest way to ICU.

****

You can buy Forbidden to the Playboy Surgeon and all the other books in the series at Mills & Boon UK, Harelquin USA and Mills & Boon Australia

Book Awards, The Writing Life

Celebrating Milestones By Fiona Lowe

RIMG0010Back in 2006,when my debut novel, Pregnant on Arrival , a medical romance, hit the shelf, I had a party. I had two actually! One at home with a small book signing and the other at the RWAustralia conference. Fast forward to 2012 and my first single title novel, (my 9th overall) Boomerang Bride gave me a party when it unexepectedly won amefave1
Rita award. Since then I have happily bounced between writing medical romances and the single title romances, taking me up to 28 books. Apart from online ‘parties’ to launch these books, I haven’t done much more than that. Well, there has been the odd glass of champagne 😉

So here I am at book 29, Daughter of Mine, which in some ways is a big departure for me and yet it isn’t. I wanted to write a multigenerational novel  about mothers, daughters and sisters, and to do that I had to move beyond a novel that focused on one or two couples. Yet, I couldn’t have written Daughter of Mine without the preceeding 22 medical romances and six single title romances 🙂 Romance fiction taught me how to write deep emotion…how to wring feeling out of words, and I channelled all that into Daughter of Mine.  So with this new book baby in my hands, I decided it was another milestone and a party was in order. We threw a book launch 🙂

Boy Wonder, who is on a gap year, organised it. After meeting with me in the office (aka, the kitchen table) and being given the budget, he set to work. He designed the invitation, he found the venue, he bought the alcohol, he liaised with the caterer, he made sure the microphone had batteries……  All I had to do was buy a dress and shoes, write a speech and turn up 🙂

70 people came to help me launch Daughter of Mine, including the fabulous Julie from Dymocks, who brought the book store 🙂 I even read a passage from the book! There was champagne, some yummy nibbles and a lot of joy. The old blue stone mansion’s ballroom was THE perfect venue as the book features two such houses.

The experts are always telling us that acknowledging milestones and having traditions are important for our mental health and family cohesion. To that end, I’ve always made a fuss of birthdays, and singled out turning 13, 18 & 21, along with graduations from school levels.  I’m just not that great at throwing parties for me, but I am really glad we did it.

Are you a milestone/traditions person? How do you celebrate?

BOOK NEWS!  Two books! Forbidden to the Playboy Surgeon and Daughter of Mine!

Daughter of Mine CoverDaughter of Mine, is out now in print and eBook in Australia and New Zealand. (Oh, and Harriet is a surgeon…)

And here’s the blurb….

When your world falls apart the only person you can depend on is your sister. 

The three Chirnwell sisters are descended from the privileged squattocracy in Victoria’s Western District — but could a long-held secret threaten their family?

Harriett Chirnwell has a perfect life — a husband who loves her, a successful career and a daughter who is destined to become a doctor just like her.

Xara has always lived in Harriet’s shadow; her chaotic life with her family on their sheep farm falls far short of her older sister’s standards of perfection and prestige.

Georgie, the youngest sister and a passionate teacher, is the only one of the three to have left Billawarre. But is her life in Melbourne happy?

Despite all three sisters having a different and sometimes strained bond with their mother, Edwina, they come together to organise a party for her milestone birthday — the first since their father’s death. But when Edwina arrives at her party on the arm of another man, the tumult is like a dam finally breaking. Suddenly the lives of the Chirnwell sisters are flooded by scandal. Criminal accusations, a daughter in crisis, and a secret over fifty years in the making start to crack the perfect façade of the prominent pastoral family.

A thought provoking novel about family expectations, secrets and lies.

Buy links are here

9780373215218On March 21st April, Forbidden to the Playboy Surgeon, a Mills & Boon medical romance and book two of the Paddington Children’s Hospital series is on side. 🙂 Set in London, it features a buttoned up neurosurgeon and a fish-out-of-water Australian, who is driven to succeed. There is also a fairy tale ball  so what more can you ask for 🙂

The blurb: Unbuttoned—and out of bounds!

Sparks fly from day one between playboy neurosurgeon Alistair North and his talented, sexy trainee surgeon Claire Mitchell. He’s on a mission to help überserious Claire relax, but his cavalier approach is driving her crazy.

Alistair is completely out of bounds, even if he is completely gorgeous—he’s her boss! But when he confronts Claire after a difficult surgery, desire overcomes reason. With secrets holding them both back, can they find a way to turn their forbidden passion into forever?

Buy Links are here

Happy Reading! Fiona x

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Summertime and the Living is Hot!

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The heat has hit and the energy levels have plummeted. Combine that with being the one person in the household who is working…make that supposed to be working…while everyone else is on holidays, well, I’m lacking in commitment.

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I’ve had a sensational two months. I spent that last 8 days of November and the first 14 days of December in the USA. Ten days in New York City, Baby! And 12 days in New Mexico and Texas; the urban jungle and then the wilderness. All of it was fabulous. In NYC, Boy Wonder, the son who loves a musical, saw 7 shows, Billy Joel in concert and jazz at the Lincoln Centre. Not bad! I saw half of that…

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We got home a week before Christmas, a time filled with shopping and baking followed by family celebrations, New Year, and houseguests. I did print out the 183 pages of the novel am writing and read it to remind me of the story. I don’t think my mind was ready to cope with an analytical read and I just wanted to change every word. I set it aside and rationalised that a new website was necessary before the cover reveal for my next book.

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The website is live! (Please take a peek, cos Boy Wonder did an amazing job with some help from an IT coder) The cover for Daughter of Mine* is revealed! Can I settle to work? NO!

Boy Wonder is waiting for university offers, which is VERY distracting and I am supposed to be going to the beach to camp for a couple of weeks. I am going to have to take my battery operated word processor and try and write some words each day. That is fine in theory but mostly I am missing the desire to work. I can’t seem to find it anywhere!  It happens every January. The heat zaps my energy. Half the country is on holidays and I willingly and easily distracted.

Anyone got any tips on how I can find my mojo cos I tell you, the deadline for the book isn’t scaring me enough yet and it really should be!

(Shh, but Daughter of Mine isn’t a medical romance per se BUT one of the protagonists is a female surgeon. It’s a 500 page novel about family, tangled secrets and lies. It’s being released on March 1st in Australia and NZ and can be preordered now.)

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels, The Writing Life

Life in Limbo

Hello! It’s my turn to blog and I’m sitting here thinking a lot of cool stuff is about to happen but none of it has happened yet so I am in information limbo!

dscf4598I’d LOVE LOVE LOVE to show you my cover for my novel Daughter of Mine, which is out March 1st but it’s not quite ready. There’s been a lot of back and forth getting the design ‘just right’ and I’ve enjoyed the process. I flew up to Sydney last week to meet with the sales and marketing people at Harper Collins/Harlequin Mira, which was exciting. An added extra treat was Kandy Shepherd, a Mills & Boon Romance author, popped across the Sydney Harbour Bridge and met me for breakfast! How lovely was that?

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Boy Wonder is now in full-on exam mode. Many of his mates have finished but as he chose to do the International Baccalaureate, his exams started a bit later. The house has been in limbo for three weeks now while he studies and we are all ready for that to be over. Roll on November 21st! Mind you, it’s going to be odd next year when I don’t have to do a school book list, organise uniform, pack lunch…. New era coming. See? still in limbo…48354afebb7bf0f3d782b349d7cd460a

20081027-igobblenyOn November 22nd we fly out to New York City, baby!! We’re having 10 days there in an apartment and then ten days touring around New Mexico. I’m calling it the “New” tour. Dear friends are flying from Virginia to spend Thanksgiving with us there and we have shows booked and so much fun planned, but, can’t tell you about it cos it hasn’t happened yet!  Right now, I’m in the yucky bit of trying to get all the Christmas cards written, the cake baked and a few other things done before I leave. I also have to write a “How the house works” guide for The Lad, who is staying at home to work and mind the house. And don’t mention packing…I am also the worst procrastinator for packing so gah! I have to start thinking about that. All top tips for packing light appreciated!

Right now are you treading water waiting for things to happen OR are you in the thick of things?

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels, Reading

Let’s have Bookclub! Books I’ve Read Recently by Fiona Lowe

I read books all sorts of ways…hardback, paperback, ebook and audio. Some people argue with me that listening to an audio book isn’t reading but I say pish to that. I tell you, I’d get no housework done if I didn’t have audio books to see me through the drudgery of it. Also, what’s not to love about being read a story.

You may or may not have read the last four books I’ve read but if you have please join in the discussion and if you haven’t, please tell me the last four books YOU have read.

3-wishesThe first two books I read are by Australian authors. Three Wishes was Liane Moriarty’s debut novel, written I think about six years ago. It’s about triplets in their 30s and it has the signature Moriarty style. I can see the roots that her writing has grown from. Although not my favourite of her all her books…What Alice Forgot currently holds that title for me…  I did enjoy this one.

dryThe Dry is a debut novel by Australian journalist, Jane Harper. It’s set in my home state in a small country town during a vicious drought. The heat and dust rise off the page. I am not a ‘who dunnit’ fan and this book is not usually my type of read but I enjoyed it. Easy to read with well drawn characters and plenty of secrets and lies. I gave it to my dad for his post-operative recovery and he read it in two days. If you like crime fiction, check this one out.

The next two books I listened to on audio books and were random picks for me from the Borrow Box app based on two separate criteria. The Donor was borrowed because it was instantly available and it sounded interesting. Vinegar Girl was a new release.

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Vinegar Girl by Anne Tyler is a modern re-telling of Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew. I have been told for years, ‘you must read Anne Tyler’ but I am not sure this book was the one I should have started with. Although entertaining, it strayed a lot from The Taming of the Shrew and the caustic wit and repartee from that play were missing. Perhaps it is a tale that would suffer from a modern telling, which is why Tyler had the proposed husband  “release” Kate from her father and why Kate ran rings around the two men who were written as buffoons.

The Donor was a book I borrowed for the premise. Twin daughters both in kidney failure
and requiring a transplant. One father and a moral dilemma. Also no likeable donorcharacters in the book at all. I listened with increasing incredulity  to the antics of the cast and I should have put it down but I kept listening, because I was waiting for … I don’t know what I was waiting for except to tell you it didn’t come. My medical knowledge was a disadvantage in this book as I wasn’t able to suspend disbelief. I kept saying, ‘that wouldn’t happen.’

Right now I am reading The Lovely Bones, which I never got around to reading when it was a big hit back in the day.

I always post the books I read on Goodreads. So what are you reading?

BOOK NEWS!

I’ve just done the final proofs on Forbidden to the Playboy Surgeon, which is book 2 in the Paddington Children’s Hospital series out next year 🙂 Today I start the final proofs on my women’s fiction/family saga, Daughter of Mine, out March 2017.

img_1662Right now in Australia, there is reprinting of Career Girl in The Country, my female surgeon fighting sexism in the outback. I love this cover. Of course,  if you don’t live in Australia, the book is available everywhere as an eBook 

I have 28 back-list books, so if you’ve missed any there is a printable list here.

Happy Reading!

Fiona x

 

The Writing Life

Research Fun! by Fiona Lowe

Frog and Peach
The inspiratio for the Frog & Peach pub 

Next year, there’s a new medical romance series coming out set in London. I have a book in it and I’ve had so much fun researching and drawing on my memories of London. The first film I can recall seeing was Mary Poppins and years later, I was very fond of watching Upstairs, Downstairs. When I finally got to London, I remember thinking I was on the set! Google Maps is my research friend along with Google in general.
I had the BEST FUN reading up on the Savoy Hotel. savoyOh, if those walls could talk! Fortunately, enough of the wild and wonderful stories and antics of the patrons were written down. Fred Astaire danced on the roof. It was a fave hotel of Marilyn Monroe’s and way back in the day, the rich and famous threw extravagant parties. Think Mr. Selfridge!

As you may or may not know, I have written a women’s fiction novel,  Daughter of Mine. It will be out March 2017 and closer to the date I will fill you in more on that. Right now, I have to start the second WF book and I’ve been researching. This took me to an artisan sourdough bread bakery.

BaDSCF5502ck in 2000, the Calverts started Irrewarra Sourdough, baking bread in historic stables on their western district property. From their first order of 100 loaves it has grown to baking 22,000 loaves a week as well as extending into other products. It was fabulous seeing all this glorous bread being made by hand. The boys and I were lucky enough to be sent home with some bread:-)

The research part of writing a book is always fun. It’s such a shame I now have to knuckle down and write the sucker 😉

Are you currently researching something? Perhaps it’s a h0liday/vacation? A new career? New Job? House? Or a new mattress…that’s my next job! Fill me in, I’d love to hear 🙂

Book News!

This year’s releases are A Daddy for Baby Zoe? and Down & Dusty Secret Confessions- Kelly. My most recent single title novels are the Medicine River Series (Montana Actually, Truly, Madly Montana) set in gloroious Montana. For all my book news, photos and details on each of my 30 novels,  head to my website or follow me on Facebook or Twitter.

 

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels, Women's Business

A Day of Mixed Emotions

Here Downmothers-day-reminder-from-mom-funny-ecard-hofUnder, it’s Monday and we celebrated Mothers’ Day yesterday. My UK mates did it back in March but my USA and Canadian friends are celebrating as I type.

Mothers’ Day is  one of those days, like Christmas and Thanksgiving, where we can load a day with far too many expectations and come out feeling let down. Or we can be beset by a multitude of emotions if our mother who, for whatever reason, is no longer in our life.

Me? I come from pragmatic stock. Granted, I am fortunate to still have a loving mother in my life but Mothers’ Day has never been a huge event in our family. I send a card, buy a gift that costs less than $25 and on the years when the planets align, spend the a day with her on or around the date. But as I chat with her 3x a week anyway, it’s not that hugely different.

It took me 7 years to conceive my first child and during those seven years, the advertising 6 months parkdale 001photos in the run up to Mothers’Day got to me now and then and I confess to being rather excited about my first MD. We’d recently moved to Wisconsin, and my husband minded the baby while I took myself off to see an Australian film, Muriel’s Wedding. We’d only been in the country 6 weeks, not nearly long enough to become used to all the differences, and after 2 hours of being surrounded by Australian accents in the movie, I came out onto the street totally discombobulated, thinking I was home in Australia.  I nearly got run over as the traffic drove on the right hand side and I had forgotten.

There have been 20 more Mothers’ Days since and I learned early on after one disastrous day,  that if I wanted to have an enjoyable day doing something I wanted to do, then I needed to stage manage it. If the weather is sunny, we picnic or bike ride. If it’s wet, we go to a movie. I don’t cook and I don’t clean and I read in bed for an hour in the morning.

DSCF5451For the last few years, however, my MD has been hijacked in a quite delightful way by my sons’ school. Both boys have done Jazz Studies in their last two years of school. On Mother’s Day there is a lunch …this year it was high tea…and the jazz bands perform. The students are required so by default, the mothers are required unless they don’t want to see their kid perform and WHOA the mother guilt on that one 😉

Yesterday was my fourth and final Mothers’Day jazz concert, unless of course I just decide IMG_20151115_150242to go … the music is always fantastic. The Lad, now almost 22,  remembered without prompting to post a card so it arrived from Tasmania on time so I am taking that for the win! Boy Wonder heated me up a croissant, although I did have to put the jam on myself 😉  All in all it was a very plesant day and I’m seeing my mother on Thursday.

So, if you’re reading this and feeling let down by your family, remember my tip- next year, set things up so you get to do what you want. This may be a walk along the beach on your own, it might be a warm bath in peace with a good book but whatever it is, make sure you do it because you feel so much better than stewing in a sea of disappointment. My husband and sons love me even if they are not great on getting organised  for MD.  I know that love by the  things they do on the other 364 days of the year. I focus on that.

How did you spend the day?

Writing News!

I’m THRILLED to annouce I have sold a multigenerational women’s fiction to Harlequin Mira (Aus/NZ).  Set very close to where I live in southern Victoria,  Daughter of Mine will be out in March 2017 🙂

I’m currently writing a medical romance, which will be part of a new series in 2017. Set in London, I have having so much fun being virtual tourist as I write.

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As you know, all 28 of my published novels are available as eBooks and many in print. For a full printable list, head on over to my website.

Happy reading!

Fiona x