Thanks, Lucy, for having me here today!
I’ve now been a published author for two whole weeks. After a very long time trying to get there, this feels like quite the achievement. And as such, I thought I’d share the things I’ve learned since Room for Love came out.
- Don’t book to be on holiday the day your book comes out. This wasn’t actually intentional – the release date was brought forward, and I got to experience the fun of trying to promote a book on an iPhone from the middle of nowhere, with practically no reception, let alone 3G connection.
- Everyone you know will think it’s about them. Or you. Or some other, mutual acquaintance. I’d be worried, except no two people have thought the same character was based on the same person. But they’ve all got opinions…
- You know you’ve written a good hero when everyone wants one for themselves. My mother, my aunt, my friends… everyone wants to know where they can find a Nate. I have to keep reminding them that a) he’s fictional and b) they’re married/engaged.
- It won’t feel quite real for a while. It still doesn’t, really. But the weirdest thing was flicking through my kindle looking for a holiday read, spotting Room for Love and thinking, ooh, what’s that? Before realizing it was my own book.
- People can’t tell by looking at you. There’s absolutely no reason why anyone in the wider world should look at me and say, hang on, are you a writer? But somehow I keep expecting it. At the very least, I really want people to ask me what I do for a living!
- The work’s not done yet. There’s promotion to do. And a companion novel coming out in July. And, really, I should probably get working on the third book… The joy of being a writer is that the release of my first book is just the beginning. I have so many more to write, and hopefully many more opportunities to enjoy the release week madness. Hopefully not while on holiday.
So, those are my first impressions of being a real, live Published Author. And here, for a glimpse into the world of my book, are my heroine’s first impressions of the Avalon Inn, after six years away…
Room for Love, Sophie Pembroke
The heavy, dark-wood front door, with its stained glass panel showering colored light onto the stone floor of the reception area, felt like another old friend to Carrie. She remembered being too small to even open it on her own; sitting on the step outside waiting for Nancy to come back from the garden to help her, or for a kindly passing guest to let her in. Today, Carrie’s hand hovered above the wood, suddenly reluctant to enter. What if it wasn’t as she remembered? Who was waiting inside?
Carrie sucked in a breath and shoved. The door fell open under her hand, easier than she’d remembered, and she stumbled before finding her feet.
Her favorite tapestry still hung above the reception desk and the sparkling silver threads of the unicorn’s horn caught her eye immediately. Her gaze moved lower. A line of senior citizens spanned the width of the hall, all standing straight backed and staring ahead, like the staff of a 1930s stately home, welcoming their master back from a long trip.
Exactly who had Nancy been hiring lately?
They looked faintly familiar from the funeral, but Carrie knew she’d been too upset that day to really take anything in. Plus, she’d spent most of the day arguing with Dad. Nothing much else had registered. Now she wished she’d paid more attention.
After a long moment of staring at each other, a younger man at the end of the line stepped forward out of the shadows. Even at a six-foot distance, she had to tilt her chin up to take in his cropped brown hair, accentuating a strong jaw. She let her gaze drop enough to linger on the wide, muscled shoulders that looked like he spent his days slinging oxen around, or something equally rural.
“Shall I do the introductions?” he asked, eyebrows raised. Carrie blinked. He wasn’t just gorgeous, he felt…familiar, somehow.
And despite his welcome, he didn’t look too pleased to see her.
Can she make room for love?
When wedding planner Carrie Archer inherits the crumbling Avalon Inn where she spent her childhood summers, she knows she’ll do whatever it takes to make it home. With no money for renovations, that means teaming up with her boss to turn the Avalon into a dream wedding venue.
But Carrie has been left more than the Inn–she’s also inherited its occupants, including three senior citizens, a single father chef with childcare issues, a panicky receptionist, and one very gorgeous gardener.
So when her cousin Ruth declares her intention to get married at the Avalon on Christmas Eve, Carrie finds herself juggling decorating with dance nights, budgeting with bridge games…and sabotage with seduction.
Sophie Pembroke has been writing romance for years, ever since she stayed up all night reading Mills and Boon novels as part of her English degree at Lancaster University. She loves to set her contemporary romance stories in the places she has lived – from the wilds of the Welsh mountains, to the gentile humour of the English country village, or the heat and tension of a London summer. She also has a tendency to make her characters kiss in castles.
Currently, she makes her home in Hertfordshire, with her husband and daughter. She writes love stories in her little spare room office, while drinking too much tea and eating homemade cakes. Or, when things are looking very bad for her heroes and heroines, white wine and dark chocolate.
Sophie keeps a blog at www.SophiePembroke.com, which should be about romance and writing, but is usually about cake and castles instead.
Web & Blog: www.SophiePembroke.com
Twitter: @Sophie_Pembroke – https://twitter.com/#!/Sophie_Pembroke
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/pages/Sophie-Pembroke/134474999990027
Facebook Profile: https://www.facebook.com/home.php#!/profile.php?id=100003136928151
Good Reads: http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/5111053-sophie-pembroke
Lyrical Press: http://www.lyricalpress.com/store/index.php?main_page=authors&authors_id=206