A lift home – part 2

Hello everyone! Welcome to the always wonderful WIPpet Wednesday. I hope this week finds you happy and well. How’s your writing going? Mine’s going pretty well, and I’ve written a lot lately. The only problem is that the plot of Teaching Mr Leavis is still unravelling. What I mean is I need to catch up with it and reel it in a bit. This novel is going to need SO much editing!

So anyway as the title of this post suggests I’m sharing with you some more from the scene I shared last week. And don’t worry – Rebecca isn’t getting in the car with a drunk – I’ve amended it to Jonathan Leavis assuring her that he’s only drunk a glass of NON ALCOHOLIC wine! If you don’t think that works, let me know in the comments below.

OK so how much to share? I think I’ll share 14 paragraphs following immediately on from last week’s. My maths goes like this (I’m manipulating things a bit): 2+2+10=14 Simple! In this scene Rebecca has accepted Jonathan Leavis’s offer of a lift home, now she knows he hasn’t been drinking. But she’s awkward and during the drive to her house Jonathan isn’t exactly doing his best to put her at ease…

‘If you want to follow me, my car’s this way,’ he informed her.

Rebecca followed Jonathan as he led her down the dimly-lit street towards a car park behind the club that she hadn’t known existed. Suddenly aware again how short her dress was, she had to fight the urge to pull it down in case he noticed.

She kept her distance making sure she stayed a few feet behind him as they walked, her face warm with the awkwardness of the situation. You could have just got a taxi, she reproached herself. But that would have meant waiting longer in the cold, with only her flimsy black dress and jacket to protect her against the elements.

‘It’s here,’ Jonathan announced abruptly. He waved the key at the car and it unlocked automatically. I bet he loves doing that, Rebecca thought. Probably takes loads of girls home in his car. If he hasn’t already scared them off beforehand.

Then she remembered what Nick had said about his wife dying. Maybe there were no women in his life. She shivered involuntarily and quickly walked over to the car. Jonathan had opened the door for her. So he can play the gentleman then, she thought raising an eyebrow.

‘Thank you,’ she said in a low voice, climbing into the car and willing her dress not to ride up.

In no time at all Jonathan had started the engine and they were off. Rebecca barely had time to put her seat belt on. Does he drive like this all the time, she wondered, then remembered her first encounter with him and decided he must do.

‘Where do you live?’ he asked her, glancing at her out of the corner of his eye.

‘Coopers Close in Yarrick,’ she told him. The city of Stokington had many areas such as Yarrick, which had been a village once and had got swallowed up into greater Stokington.

He nodded, but said no more. Rebecca exhaled silently and gazed unseeing out of the window. Jonathan’s fight with Nick swam into her inner vision and she wondered again why they’d been fighting. She turned to Jonathan.

‘Are you going to tell me what that was all about?’ she asked, her voice blunt.

‘What was what about?’ came the terse reply.

‘Oh don’t give me that, Mr Leavis. Your argument with Nick.’

‘I don’t want to talk about it,’ he replied, glancing at her for a second with a furrowed brow before returning his attention to the road.

Hope you enjoyed that. :) Wanna take part in WIPpet Wednesday? It’s easy! Just post an excerpt of whatever you’re working on writing-wise at the moment, then add your name to this linky. It should – in theory at least – relate in some way to the date. Don’t forget to check out what the other WIPpeteers have shared this week.

My thanks as always goes to the fantabulous K. L. Schwengel for hosting. :D

 

 

Romance Writer’s Weekly Blog Hop #lovewritechat

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Hello! If you’ve just joined me from Carrie Elk’s blog, welcome!

I missed last week’s blog hop, so I’m pleased to be back this week to take part in the challenge set by Mishka Jenkins. What is it I hear you ask? Well she challenged us to write some flash fiction – a love letter no longer than 400 words.

Not only that – it has to include the words ‘Sweet’, ‘Pumpkin’ and ‘Brush’. My contribution comes in at 286 words. I have to say I found writing this letter a lot of fun and I hope you enjoy reading it. :)

Dearest Peter,

It was so good to speak to you yesterday. I know it’s only been a week since I saw you, but it’s too long. I love you and miss you so much and I can’t wait to see you again. I’m so glad you found my brush down the side of the sofa! It’s been really annoying me trying to work out where it got to since I got back from seeing you last weekend. I suppose I should have known it might be there after… Well, you know.

I can’t believe that I’m with such a sweet guy as you – no really, you are the best. I think about you every minute of every day. I’m not exaggerating, I do. Bella and Izzy keep teasing me about you and I go so red. They say to me things like: ‘Oh Peter, my little pumpkin pie’ and make silly faces and bat their eyelids. I know, it’s terrible. Seriously, I’ve done nothing to encourage them, honestly I haven’t.

I can just picture your sceptical face and your amused grin at my protestations of innocence. But the truth is I don’t think I can wait till next weekend to see you again. I know I’ll have to – I’ve got lectures all week so I have no choice – but being without you is sheer torment and I don’t know how I’m going to survive a whole year of being apart from you all week every week. Seeing you only at weekends seems second best somehow.

I know you can’t move to Bristol, but still… I suppose we’ll get used to this. I’m counting the hours till I see you on Saturday.

Love you always,

Jenna. xxx

Thanks for reading! Now why not hop along to Sarah Hegger’s blog and read her contribution?

An excerpt from ‘Reunion of the Heart’

rothIt’s been a couple of months now since I published Reunion of the Heart. I thought I’d share an excerpt from it with you. For those of you who don’t know anything about it, it’s a romance about a young woman, a writer, who returns to the school where she was really unhappy as a teenager to attend a reunion.

Little does she know it, but her life is about to change forever.  This scene takes place at the reunion, where Anna has just encountered Will, the man who made her life a misery when they were at school together. Enjoy!

‘Anna?’ She turned around and Will was standing by her side.  She looked up at him.  He was tall, taller than she remembered and not half bad looking.  Her face burned as their eyes met. 

‘What do you want?’ Her voice was barely a whisper.  She removed her hand from his grasp and cleared her throat, saying more loudly and with some anger, ‘Will, I have nothing to say to you.  After the way you treated me at school, did you really expect me to talk to you tonight?  You and Matt and your friends made my life a misery.  All those taunts and catcalls. I would have found it hard enough anyway just being a teenager.  But the way you and your friends behaved towards me – well, to be blunt it made me want to end it all.’

Will was silent; his face was pale apart from two high spots of colour on his cheeks.  He appeared stunned by what Anna had just told him.  Finally he nodded.  ‘I understand,’ he said slowly.

She shook her head.  ‘No, I don’t think you do understand.  I don’t think bullies can ever really understand what that kind of treatment feels like until it happens to them.’

There was a long pause.  Anna wanted to turn away but something made her stay where she was.

‘That may be so,’ he said at last, ‘but I just wanted to tell you how sorry…’

‘Anna, is everything OK?’ Melissa’s voice came loud and clear.

‘Yes, I’ll join you in a second,’ Anna called.  She turned back to Will.  He was standing rigidly as if he were tense.  For a moment she wanted to let him speak, to give her his apology.  But then she remembered how he’d treated her at school, how awful he’d made her feel and her resolve hardened. 

‘There are times when sorry isn’t good enough,’ she told him, watching as the redness on his cheeks spread.  Before he could say anything else, she turned away and dashed across to her friends, sitting down with them.

‘What did he want?’ Melissa asked her.

‘To apologise,’ Anna said frowning as she glanced back to see Will’s retreating form.  ‘It wasn’t accepted.’

I hope you enjoyed this excerpt. :) Reunion of the Heart is available on Amazon.com and Amazon UK.

A lift home

Hi all. Hope your week’s gone OK so far. I’ve been doing all right. I’ve made some progress with Teaching Mr Leavis  and I’m beginning to have at least a vague sense of where I want the story to go and how it’s going to get there. Thank  you all for your advice re first drafts – it was very helpful to have my instinct to stick with the first draft until I’ve finished it confirmed.

So for today I thought I’d share with you 10 paragraphs for the month from Teaching Mr Leavis. This scene takes place about a page on from where last week’s excerpt finished which you can read here. To see the excerpt before that go here.

In this scene Rebecca has left the club and is making her way home when she hears someone call her name. When she realises who it is her heart sinks…

‘Mr Leavis,’ Rebecca replied, her voice coming out as a groan. She didn’t care if he noticed. He walked up to her until he was standing only a few feet away. The dull orange glow from the streetlamps didn’t give her much light to see by, but nonetheless Rebecca got another good look at Jonathan Leavis.

She had to admit to herself – albeit grudgingly – that he wasn’t a bad-looking man. He was tall and had a good figure. His hair was almost black and, although short, wavy. His striking eyes were the same colour. She surmised that he was in his early forties, though he was one of those people whose age was indeterminate.

He cut a powerful figure, although he seemed a little worse for wear tonight. Maybe it was just the poor light. But he looked almost a little haggard to Rebecca, and she wondered how often he went to his club, how much he’d had to drink.  

A half-smile was on his lips; his expression was friendly enough, but Rebecca really wasn’t in the mood to have a verbal sparring match. Feeling a wave of fatigue hit her again, she cleared her throat and tried not to sound hostile as she spoke.

‘Mr Leavis, what do you want? It’s late, I’m tired and I need to go home.’

‘Would you like me to take you home?’ Jonathan asked her, giving her direct look that made her feel as though he could glimpse her soul.

Rebecca said nothing, just gawped at him. Had she heard him right? Was that really the parent from hell, Jonathan Leavis, asking her if she wanted a lift home? He has been drinking, she reminded herself, shaking her head to try and clear it of confusion.

‘I’ll take that as a no then,’ he said, pursing his lips and beginning to turn away.

Rebecca thought quickly, weighing up the pros and cons. If she went home with Jonathan she’d have to put up with his questions and general talk. Also he would see where she lived, another downside. But if she chose to get a taxi home, she’d have to wait a while for one to turn up – they weren’t all that frequent in this part of town – and it would be expensive.

‘Wait, Jonathan,’ she said, wincing as she realised she’d used his Christian name without meaning to. He turned back; she saw a half-smile creasing his lips and silently berated herself for slipping up. But she swallowed any biting comment she would have liked to make. ‘Yes, I would like a lift home, thank you.’

WIPpet Wednesday is open to everyone who would like to share some of their writing on their blog. If you want to join in, just post some of your recent writing on your blog. Ideally it should relate in some way to the date. Then add your name to this.

K. L. Schwengel is our lovely hostess. :D

Triumph and Treasure Cover Reveal!

I’m pleased to be able to share with you today the cover for Triumph and Treasure, the latest book by the award winning, Amazon best-selling author Collette Cameron. So without further ado, here it is:

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Isn’t it great? Here’s the blurb:

Triumph and Treasure

Book I in the Highland Heather Romancing a Scot Series

 A disillusioned Scottish gentlewoman.

Angelina Ellsworth once believed in love—before she discovered her husband of mere hours was a slave-trader and already married. To avoid the scandal and disgrace, she escapes to her aunt and uncle’s, the Duke and Duchess of Waterford. When Angelina learns she is with child, she vows she’ll never trust a man again.

A privileged English lord.

Flynn, Earl of Luxmoore, led an enchanted life until his father committed suicide after losing everything to Waterford in a wager. Stripped of all but his title, Flynn is thrust into the role of marquis as well as provider for his disabled sister and invalid mother. Unable to pay his father’s astronomical gambling loss, Flynn must choose between social or financial ruin.

When the duke suggests he’ll forgive the debt if Flynn marries his niece, Flynn accepts the duke’s proposal. Reluctant to wed a stranger, but willing to do anything to protect her babe and escape the clutches of the madman who still pursues her, Angelina agrees to the union. Can Flynn and Angelina find happiness and love in a marriage neither wanted, or is the chasm between them insurmountable?

And here’s a bio of the author:

Award winning, Amazon best-selling author, Collette Cameron, has a BS in Liberal Studies and a Master’s in Teaching. Author of the Castle Brides Series and Highland Heather Romancing a Scot Series, Collette writes Regency and Scottish historicals and makes her home in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and five mini dachshunds. Mother to three and a self-proclaimed Cadbury Chocolate chocoholic, Collette loves a good joke, inspirational quotes, flowers, trivia, and all things shabby chic. You’ll always find dogs, birds, quirky—sometimes naughty—humor, and a dash of inspiration in her novels. Her motto for life? You can’t have too much chocolate, too many hugs, or too many flowers. She’s thinking about adding shoes to that list.

Connect with Collette

Collette Cameron

Website: http://collettecameron.com

Facebook: http://facebook.com/collettecameronauthor

Blue Rose Romance Blog: http://blueroseromance.com

Twitter: http://twitter.com/collette_author

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7047979.Collette_Cameron

Newsletter: http://tinyurl.com/regencyrose You can connect with her on LinkedIn and Google+ too.

Just head to her website for the links.

Breaking it up – WIPpet Wednesday

Hi everyone! Hope you’re all well. I’m gradually adjusting to the cooler weather. Here in the UK it’s been quite sudden – we had an extended period of summer weather, but that’s over now and it’s well and truly autumn here. It’s a bit cold and I need to wear a coat when I go out – this time last week I was out in a T shirt!

Oh well – at least WIPpet Wednesday doesn’t change and I can share with you some more from my WIP Teaching Mr Leavis. I’m doing OK with it – I wrote over 1200 words on Monday which is a record for me. :) But the trouble is I seem to have got quite far along in the plot without the word count reflecting that. So as of right now I’ve done 38,000 words and ideally I want to do about 70,000 in total, but as I say the plot’s kind of run away from me.

I think part of the trouble is that although I made a plan at the beginning, I didn’t plan out the middle part of the story as carefully as I did when I wrote Reunion of the Heart. OK, even in ROTH I deviated quite a bit from the plan, but I still had a clear idea in my head of how I wanted the story to get to its conclusion. I don’t have that with this one. I’ve been much more of a pantser this time around and I’m not used to dealing with it!

But at the same time I don’t want to go back and change things – I think it’s VERY important that I finish the first draft – even if I only get up to, say, 45,000 words. Then I will go back and do some MAJOR editing (and hopefully flesh it out a bit). After that I may ask for a volunteer – literally one person – to be an alpha reader for me. I don’t even want to let beta readers see it for some time! If you have any words of wisdom to offer, let me know!

All right, that’s enough writerly angst! As you may have guessed from the title of this post, the excerpt I’m sharing with you this week follows directly on from last week’s, which you can read here if you haven’t already! To recap Rebecca is trying to stop a fight between Jonathan Leavis, an obnoxious parent from the school where she works and Nick, a colleague of hers from the same school. I’m sharing 15 paragraphs. My maths goes like this: 8 +10 = 18 – 2 = 16 – 1 = 15

‘Oh don’t be ridiculous,’ Nick muttered.

‘I’m being ridiculous?’ Rebecca’s voice rose in volume. ‘I’m not the one trying to punch the living daylights out of someone!’ She felt her face grow hot with anger.

‘Yes, Nick, just stop causing trouble,’ Jonathan said, his tone arrogant.

Rebecca rounded on him. ‘I meant both of you!’ she snapped. ‘You’re not exactly whiter than white in all this are you, Mr Leavis?’

‘You can call me Jonathan,’ he murmured.

Rebecca blinked. ‘Right now I’ll call you anything I want,’ she said. ‘If it was in my authority I’d ask you to leave this club, but seeing as you own it…’ Her voice was clear and, as the music had long since stopped, her words carried across the room. There was a collective intake of breath as the audience of clubbers took in her words. Everyone seemed to turn to Jonathan and scrutinise him.

His face went redder if that were possible, and he gave Rebecca a look which she couldn’t fathom.

‘I’ll go,’ Nick said in a loud voice. ‘I was about to anyway before this knob head decided he wanted to have a go.’ Despite his bravado his voice was weary and his expression, although defiant, a little careworn.

He turned and began to walk away and this time Jonathan didn’t try to stop him. Rebecca glanced at Jonathan and saw a dark scowl marring his features as he watched Nick leave. Rebecca too turned away from him and was about to return to her friends when she felt a hand on her arm. She turned around.

‘What do you want, Mr Leavis?’ she asked him. She was blowed if she was going to do as he asked and call him Jonathan. And she was beginning to wish she’d never met him. Was he never going to stop causing her trouble?

His expression was guarded yet a little contrite. ‘I want you to know, Miss Engleton, that there’s more to this than meets the eye,’ he said in a low voice.

She sighed and looked him straight in the eye, noticing that he was gazing back at her with extreme interest and wondered what he was thinking. Why did he have to give her such brazen looks all the time? It was so unnerving. Rebecca felt fatigue beginning to overwhelm her and her limbs were heavy, as if she’d climbed a mountain. It’d been a long day.

‘There probably is, Mr Leavis,’ she said.  ‘But I’m too tired to hear your story tonight. Maybe another day.’ She resolutely turned and walked away from him, feeling his gaze still on her as she walked towards her friends, who by this time were standing close by in the crowd. Their expressions were a mixture of astonishment and admiration.

‘What was that all about?’ Karen asked laying a hand on Rebecca’s arm, an amazed look on her face.

‘I haven’t a clue,’ Rebecca admitted. ‘I just knew if I didn’t step in either one of them could get seriously hurt.’ She felt her legs becoming a bit shaky. ‘Can we sit down? I think I’ve got a bit of post-traumatic stress disorder,’ she joked.

So there you have it. To take part in WIPpet Wednesday all you have to do is post some of your recent writing work on your blog, then add your name to this. Rule: ideally the excerpt of your writing should relate in some way to the date. Don’t forget to check out all the other WIPpeteer’s contributions.

Thank you K. L. Schwengel for being our lovely hostess! :)

Romance Writer’s Weekly Blog Hop #lovewritechat

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 Welcome to my contribution to Romance Writer’s Weekly. This week we’re answering questions from Beth Carter about how we write about our characters and how much of our own experience we bring  to our writing.

If you’re joining me from J. J. Devine’s blog, then welcome! I hope you enjoy my answers to the questions. :)

1. Which type of character do you prefer writing about: Sexy, romantic, sweet, quirky, mean, old, young, smart, silly or other?

I think for me it’s a mixture of sexy and romantic. I like writing about a guy who’s sexy, but also sensitive enough to the heroine’s needs to be romantic, so that it’s not all about him. But I also like to write about someone who’s hot enough to make my heroine start to think twice about him and maybe not write him off for being arrogant or whatever faults I’ve given him.

2. Have you ever killed off (or gotten back at) an ex in your writing? On paper of course.

No, I can’t say I have. I tend to use my intuition a bit when it comes to describing men who let the heroine down, or are love cheats and so on. I find it a lot of fun, though, to create these characters and scenarios, all that tension and heartbreak. It’s good to get creative with ideas about how a guy has treated or mistreated a girl and how she responds to that.

3. What hobbies do you have that you incorporate in your writing?

Actually my latest novel Reunion of the Heart has a writer as its heroine. So for me that was an easy one. I’ve also written about characters who have a love of reading and some of the books I love are the ones they love too.

Now why not hop along to A. S. Fenichel’s blog and check out her responses to the questions!