Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels, New Releases

Fear of Missing Out!

princessesDisney_0 (2)         Or as I’m hearing a lot lately – “FOMO”.

My friends are talking about it in relation to their teenage kids. I’m not sure that it applies to my boys – they seem to march to the beat of their own drum – and I know that I’m more than happy at home in my PJs but at this time of the year I must admit to a little bit of FOMO.

Everyone in the romance writing world is heading off to conferences. First is the RWAmerica conference which starts this week in Orlando and the annual Harlequin Pajama party is tonight – BTW I’m perfectly dressed for this with nowhere to go! – then the RWAustralia conference is on in Brisbane and this is followed by New Zealand. Exhausting but loads of fun and I won’t be at any of them this year.

If anyone else out there fears they are missing out too I hope I can cheer you up. I have a few new releases which might help you pass the time and help you to forget what you’re missing.

Love Me Again and Love Me Forever are ebook exclusives available in the USA and Canada (am I contributing to FOMO?).

There is a Giveaway running  for readers in the USA to win a copy of Love Me Again

See this #AmazonGiveaway for a chance to win: Love Me Again (The Flying Doctors Book 1) (Kindle Edition). https://giveaway.amazon.com/p/d93d9e83bbd0c5a7 NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Ends the earlier of Aug 9, 2017 11:59 PM PDT, or when all prizes are claimed. See Official Rules http://amzn.to/GArules.

Tempted and Tamed, AUS, Aug17And for readers in Australia if you haven’t read my Anderson sisters trilogy, “Tempted & Tamed” is out now.

If you’re suffering from FOMO ATM let me know – we can console each other!

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Do you speak the language of love?

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Hello there everyone,

Seeing as our American pals (and a Scot and a Kiwi) are en route to the Romantic Writers of America Conference…I thought today would be the perfect day to take a little quiz. It’s easy, I promise.

You’ve all heard of tropes, right? A writer’s shortcut for describing a situation in a novel to a reader -a Cinderella Story, a modern day Romeo & Juliet… In other words – it’s an elevator pitch (“Jaws in Space” Can you name that film? Spoiler alert – it’s Alien.)

I always think I’m a trope free zone, but it turns out this simply isn’t the case. It seems virtually nothing is original.

Moulin Rouge? Prostitute with the Heart of Gold (ditto to Pretty Woman)

The Princess Bride? Woman in Peril

PS I Love You? Matchmaker/Widow/Better as Friends/Dead Man Writing/Hapily Married/Mess of Woe/Romancing the Widow/Reunion Kiss/and on and on and so on and so forth, but…

WE SIMPLY CAN’T GET ENOUGH!

We love love and the harder we have to work for it the more rewarding, tear-jerking, heart-thumpingly fabulous it is!

So…take a little trip down Trope Lane and let us know what you think

And PS: There’s a duet of Italian Royals in it for the person who comes up with the best FAKE trope and an Annie Claydon special (think Sizzling Hot Single Dads!) for the runner up!

 

If you’re aching to work your way through some royal books with jilted brides, runaway bridesmaids, working for the boss (times two!), reunited, redemption and opposites attract…why not take a gander at my book out this August: It’s a duet…by me! xx Annie O’

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Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Conferences!

I am getting ready to go to the Romance Writers of America National Conference. As I type this, I’m remembering my very first conference in 2009 as an unpublished writer. I had just finaled in the Golden Heart contest and had to fly from Brazil–where we were living at the time–to  San Francisco. I didn’t know anyone, other than my critique partners (and my online RWA chapter), with whom I had interacted online, but had never met in person.

San Francisco RWA 2009
Tina and the online critique group in 2009

It was a great experience, and several members of that critique group are still active and have become good friends. I have met so many wonderful people through the conference and it’s always a thrill to see fellow Medical Romance authors and attend all of the luncheons, workshops, and then cut loose at the fabulous Harlequin party.

It’s still a bit scary and overwhelming all these years later, but at least now I know a few more people and have made some wonderful lifelong friends!

I hope you all have a wonderful week and make some great memories!

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Excerpt – Saving Baby Amy by Annie Claydon

The cover fairies are always gracious, but sometimes I just can’t stop looking at a cover.  I do love a good sunset, and this cover has to be one of my favourites!

SBA cover  CHAPTER ONE

Hospital gossip was a bit like the wind: unpredictable and prone to sudden gusts in one direction or another. Information could easily end up at the furthest corner of the hospital before it came to the notice of the people involved. So it was no particular surprise to Chloe Delancourt that she’d walked all the way over to the canteen before hearing a piece of news that quite obviously pertained to her.

‘So what’s all this about your boyfriend and a baby?’ One of the other junior doctors joined her at the end of the queue.

‘My boyfriend?’ Jake was long gone, and if he did have a baby it was nothing to do with her.

Petra grinned. ‘All right, so he’s not your boyfriend. Since he’s good looking, single and living with you, that might be classed as an omission on your part.’

‘You mean Jon?’ Chloe had only seen Dr Jonathan Lambert for a total of about ten minutes since he’d moved in two weeks ago.

‘How many good-looking men are you living with currently?’

‘Just the one…’ The ten minutes had been more than enough to notice that he was good looking. And that he had a delicious smile. But apart from that all she really knew about him was that he was a good friend of her brother’s and he kept the bathroom tidy. He’d started his new job at the hospital six weeks earlier than anticipated and had needed a place to stay because the renovations on his own house weren’t finished yet.

‘Glad to hear it. If there was more than one of them, I’d be looking for an invitation to come over for dinner at the weekend.’

Chloe shrugged. ‘Come over anyway, I’m not doing anything tomorrow. It’ll be just the two of us, though, he’s not exactly made his presence felt.’

‘If he’s working nights then I suppose you wouldn’t see much of him during the week…’ Petra was obviously turning the idea over in her head.

‘Or the weekend. He spends every waking hour over at his place. I’ve hardly seen him.’ Maybe Jon was avoiding her. Or maybe he just took the promise that she’d hardly know he was there very seriously. Whatever. It suited Chloe not to get too involved with a face as handsome as his.

‘Well, he’s here now. With a baby.’

‘What kind of baby?’

Petra rolled her eyes. ‘Two arms, two legs…the usual. A little girl, he was calling her Amy…’

‘What?’ Chloe almost dropped her tray and instead thrust it into Petra’s hands. ‘Where is he?’

‘He was in A and E about five minutes ago. Someone said he’d asked for directions up to Orthopaedics—.’ Petra broke off as Chloe turned, running for the doors of the canteen.

*

Chloe had sprinted across the courtyard and up three flights of stairs, back to her own department. Jon had been up to Orthopaedics and left a message that he was going back downstairs to A and E. By the time she got down to the Paediatric A and E department she could hardly breathe so it was just as well that the receptionist knew what she wanted without Chloe having to say so.

‘That was quick, I’ve only just paged you. They’ve just gone through. Consulting Room Three.’

The pager in Chloe’s pocket buzzed suddenly and she jumped, switching it off. Taking a deep breath, in an effort to slow her racing heart, she thanked the receptionist and walked slowly towards the consulting rooms.

If Amy was here, then where was Hannah? And if Hannah had left her child with Jon that posed a whole slew of other questions that Chloe really didn’t want to think about until she was sure of the situation. She knocked and turned the handle of the consulting-room door before whoever was inside had a chance to answer.

Jon was lifting Amy out of her car seat. He’d obviously dressed quickly, because his shirt was buttoned up wrong, leaving one red checked tail slightly longer than the other at the front. Amy fretted a little, and then seemed to decide that the strong cradle of Jon’s arms was a safe place.

‘What…?’

She hadn’t noticed how blue his eyes were before, or how tender. Or that his light brown hair, falling across his brow, gave him a slightly boyish look. Or that his hands seemed so large and capable next to Amy’s tiny fingers.

‘Sit down.’ Amy stirred slightly at Jon’s words, and then snuggled back against his chest. For a moment it seemed the best place in the world to be. Held in his arms without a care in the world.

But if Amy didn’t seem concerned about the whereabouts of her mother, Chloe was. ‘Where’s my sister?’

‘Hannah’s at your place.’ The tenderness in his eyes seemed reserved just for Amy, and he gave Chloe a more dispassionate look. ‘Sit…’

Clearly something was up, and he wasn’t going to tell her until she was sitting down. She bit back the temptation to tell him that she was a doctor too, and that she’d been working at this hospital a good deal longer than he had. Even if she did feel far more like a slightly panicky aunt than a doctor at the moment.

The dark blue windcheater on the chair next to him had been hanging in her hallway for the past two weeks, and was probably the most familiar thing about him. Chloe moved it, draping it over the backrest. When she sat down, an elusive hint of his scent halted the clamour of her senses for a moment, as if they’d paused to appreciate it. This wasn’t the time, or the place…

His eyes and the slight curve of his lips invited calm. No… Actually, they invited surrender, and that wasn’t something that Chloe was prepared to give. ‘Tell me what’s happened.’

‘Hannah was worried about Amy and she took her to her own doctor this morning. He told her that Amy just had a virus, but Hannah thought it was something more so she brought her to you.’

‘And…?’ Chloe reached across to feel Amy’s forehead. She was a little feverish, and her cheeks were flushed.

‘I agreed with Hannah. So I brought Amy here, where she could be examined and treated properly.’

‘But where’s Hannah?’ Chloe couldn’t keep the frustration from her voice.

‘She’s at your place. She was…a little distressed.’

‘A little distressed?’ Chloe frowned at him. Jon didn’t need to play the situation down for her benefit.

‘She was crying her eyes out, and she insisted on staying behind while I brought Amy here.’ Chloe’s eyebrows shot up and he flashed her a cool smile. ‘It’s okay. I got to know Hannah quite well when she was staying with James. She wasn’t entrusting Amy to a stranger.’

So, however distressed Hannah was, she was still thinking straight. That was something. James had mentioned that a friend of his had helped out a lot with Hannah, spending time with her and letting her talk, but Chloe hadn’t realised it was Jon.

But if Hannah had found someone to talk to in Jon, then Chloe couldn’t see how. He seemed somehow distant, as if Amy was the only person in the room he could trust with an unreserved smile.

‘Then you’ll know that Hannah’s…vulnerable.’ Chloe twisted her lips. Vulnerable wasn’t quite the right word. Hannah could be surprisingly strong and very determined. But she was young. Troubled sometimes.

‘I know that she’s almost ten years younger than you, and that she was only nine when you lost both your parents. That you and James have done your best to look after her, but it hasn’t always been easy.’

‘No, it hasn’t.’ Chloe hadn’t made it any easier. Hannah had always wanted to live with her, and Chloe had worked hard, saving every penny she could and adding to her third of the money from the sale of their parents’ house so that she could afford a home for the two of them. She’d bought the house, and then two months after they’d moved in Chloe had fallen ill. Hannah had gone to live with James instead, but had never really settled.

‘Look, Hannah’s okay for the moment.’

Okay for the moment. Most people had learned to settle for that where Hannah was concerned, but Chloe wanted more for her sister.

‘You do know that Hannah’s still only eighteen? And that Amy’s father isn’t on the scene?’ Hannah had run away two weeks before her sixteenth birthday. Chloe had been too ill to do anything but worry, while James had moved heaven and earth to find their sister. When he had, she’d been living with a boy of nineteen, who had been more than eager to give her up when James had wondered aloud whether Hannah’s queasy spells might be morning sickness.

‘Yes, I know. She’s all right.’ It seemed that Chloe was going to have to take his word for it, because Jon’s face showed no evidence that he really understood the gravity of the situation. His whole attention was focussed on Amy.

‘I’d just feel a bit better if she were here and I could see for myself.’ Her words sounded rather more accusing than Chloe had meant them to.

‘I felt that Amy needed to be looked at sooner rather than later, and that was my first priority. Hannah calmed down when she saw I was taking her concerns seriously and promised to stay put while I was gone.’

‘Yes… I’m sorry. Thanks.’ None of this was Jon’s fault. Hannah had put him in a difficult position and he’d taken the only decision he could. Chloe stretched her arms out towards Amy. ‘I’ll take her now.’

He didn’t move. ‘Why don’t you let me examine her? I can do it now—my shift won’t be starting for another three hours.’

‘And you’re better qualified than me?’ There was something he wasn’t saying, and Chloe guessed it might be that. It was true, after all. Jon’s speciality was paediatric emergencies, and even though he’d only been here a couple of weeks he was already gaining something of a reputation as an excellent doctor.

‘Yes, I am. And I’m not Amy’s aunt.’ He said the words dispassionately. ‘I dare say you’re a lot better at dealing with Hannah than I am. Why don’t you give her a call, while I fetch my stethoscope?’

Maybe he was just giving her something to do to keep her quiet, because it seemed that he had already come to some kind of agreement with Hannah. But he was right. Chloe nodded and Jon delivered Amy into her arms.

‘She’s two years old. All of her immunisations are up to date and she’s on no medication.’ If she was going to take up the role of concerned aunt then she may as well give Jon all the relevant information. And ask the relevant questions. ‘What do you think?’

‘I don’t know anything for sure yet.’ He got to his feet and walked out of the room, without looking back.

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Walking Is My Go To Place

FullSizeRender (2)Whenever I have a problem to solve I try to go for a walk. I deal with difficult plots, annoying people, and other day to day issues by striding out. It also helps the waistline!

Since I was a tiny dot trotting around after my dad on the farm, walking has always been my favourite exercise. As a teen I joined a tramping club and saw some wonderful places.

Yep, in New Zealand we call it tramping, but when I lived in Canada my flatmates thought I was talking another kind of tramp (not the under the bridge kind either) and insisted it was hiking we were doing. 🙂

My man and I have done some amazing tramps/hikes in the past that have lasted days. Once we were helicoptered into the mountains and took six days to walk out. It was a wonderful experience.

Yesterday we went for a short walk, three hours, on the Snout in Picton. It was great being out in the fresh air after the winter temps keeping us indoors. Did I solve my current plot problems? Nope. Or so I thought at the time, but this morning when I sat down and picked up a pen an outline flowed onto the paper so guess my brain was working overtime in the background.FullSizeRender (3)

How do you solve those annoying things that go round and round in your head?

Do you have a favourite place to go, or activity to do?

 

 

 

Pregnant with the Boss's Baby

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

Summertime Busy!

Summer is always a busy time around here, but this year has been extra crazy! It started before summer, with my youngest graduating from high school. It was a beautiful day! Then lots of yard work and flower-planting and food preparation for his party the following week. Here are the two of us, then him looking at me grumpily, asking why I’m taking so many photos 😉

 

After that, I went to an out-of-state wedding by myself to see my cousin’s daughter get married. Then, as a family a week later, we spent four days in Atlanta, Georgia for our nephew’s wedding. Here are my three kiddos dressed in their finery. It was a really fun time with lots of family from all over the country.

Ari,James,GeoWeddingBefore the wedding, my husband asked me how I felt about having a Summer Solstice dinner for a few friends, and I said “Uh, sure…” not paying attention to when that actually was. Which turned out to be two days after we got back from Atlanta. So there was a bunch of stuff to do for that, and it turned into 16 people somehow, but we had a really good time. Here’s a photo of a bit of the sashimi appetizer some gourmand friends brought to the party, and it was amazing! And here’s a photo of all the cleanup left for the next day – unfortunately, I didn’t take photos of the actual food. 🙂

 

I was finally able to get going on my new book, but lots of interruptions have made it slow-going. For the past 26 years, ever since we got married, we’ve had an annual July 4th party. So we couldn’t exactly have this be the first year without one! Here are the menfolk admiring the chickens on the rotisserie, and my hubby, after getting the chickens on and before guests arrived, taking a moment in the pool on our new floatie – Pegasus 😀 My goal is to get a hilarious picture of myself on that thing, as I haven’t experienced it yet.

 

And next week, we’re having an engagement party for our daughter and her fiancé to introduce the two families. I shared the pictures of him popping the question on my last blog, but here are a few of the engagement photos they’re planning to use on the wedding website and Save-the-Date announcements (weddings seem more complicated than in the olden days!).  I think they all look like they could be a romance novel cover! 🙂

 

And after the engagement party, I’m off to Orlando for the Romance Writers of America Conference. So you can see why I’m struggling to get this book written!  How’s your summer been?  Fun, busy, relaxing, or all of the above?

Robin xoxo

 

Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical Romance Novels

A postcard from London

Last month, wasn’t my turn to blog.  Which was as well, really.  In the wake of the then most recent terrorist attack on my home city, I didn’t have the words to express how I felt.  Kate Hardy put many of the ideas that were running through my head into words, in her blog Love is the Answer.

So what now?  Isn’t it a bit late to talk about all of this?  So much has happened in the last few months, and since the London Bridge incident there’s been more tragedy, more anger and more grief.  When I say that it’s not over yet, it’s not because I’m a pessimist, or I accept all that’s happened as just one of those things.  It’s because disaster and strife, of one kind or another, have been constant themes of London’s 2,000 year history.  There have always been challenges, of all kinds, and that’s no different for the almost 9 million Londoners today.

I hope you’ll forgive me a little bias, here.  For me, London’s the most beautiful and greatest city in the world.  I would say that, wouldn’t I?  There are so many other wonderful places in this world of ours, but London’s the one I call home 🙂

But I also know that we have our share of problems, and in the right quarters I can be just as vocal about those as I am about the joys of living here.  It’s because I haven’t forgotten about those who have been killed and injured, that I want a future for my city that holds something better.  And it’s with that in mind that I ask those of you in our worldwide community, whose most recent picture of London might be what you’ve read in the paper, to take a look at London through my eyes.

Please see the open, blue sky above the Thames, the crowds on both sides of the river, enjoying the sunshine and the sights.   The Tower, The London Eye, The Globe, St Paul’s Cathedral, The Palace of Westminster… the list goes on.  You’re never short of a sight to see in London, and after living here all my life, I haven’t run out yet.  Please see a city which welcomes people from all parts of the world, and benefits from what they bring us.  One where people like to disagree, on practically every issue under the sun, but where freedom of expression is defended.

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There are changes, of course.  But please see past the newly erected barriers protecting the pavement, on London Bridge and in other parts of the city.  Please see the hundreds of messages that ordinary people left at London Bridge – Love not Hate.  Please see the multi-coloured banners, floating high over Regent Street – London is Open.  These messages were in response to recent events, but the Carnaby Street lights last Christmas were on the same theme.  Love and Hope. 

 

Please see the flowers and green spaces, street performers, pavement artists and a city that just doesn’t know how to stay down.  And when you see all that, please smile.

So that’s my postcard!  What would you like to send from your home?