Sunday, 15 November 2020
Sunday, 8 November 2020
Today I am delighted to welcome wonderful Ella Allbright to the blog to tell us all about the inspiration behind her beautiful new book, THE LAST CHARM.
Hi Heidi, thanks so much for inviting me on your blog again, and for your support for The Last Charm. It’s been an exciting couple of months since the ebook was released in August - with it hitting several Top 10 Amazons charts both here in the UK and in the US - and I’m super excited that paperback publication is this Thursday.
Over the last few months, I’ve been delighted to be contacted by readers to tell me they’ve read and loved The Last Charm, and to chat about the characters and themes. There’s no greater privilege as an author to know you’ve created characters people care about, and have been so touched by your book that they reach out to you.
One of the recurring questions I’m asked is where the inspiration for the book, and writing generally, comes from. In essence, it’s from the world around me. I see a book as being a bit like a jigsaw puzzle, made up of little pieces of myself, my friends and family but also strangers, films, songs, stories, places and experiences. I start off with a ‘what if?’ question to establish the core of a story, before creating the characters and building a world for them as I plan out the main events to get from beginning to end.
The inspiration for The Last Charm came from my lovely editor Charlotte Ledger at One More Chapter. She commissioned me to write an epic love story set around a charm bracelet, which I was immediately excited about as thought it was a great concept. When we first met to discuss the idea, I was very passionate about my home county of Dorset being the setting as it’s so beautiful, and I don’t feel it gets the exposure it deserves in terms of books and films etc. Quite a bit of The Last Charm is inspired by my favourite places on the coast, including Durdle Door and Lulworth Cove, and the secondary school in the book is based on the one I attended in Bournemouth.
Deciding the two main characters would move in and out of each other’s lives in a will-they, won’t-they plot, I used the charms to choose on the significant events that would bring them together, push them apart or bookmark their love story. After a few weeks I’d written a twenty chapter outline which I sent to Charlotte, and we tweaked that slightly before I got my head down and put fingers to keyboard. Even though it took me longer to write than planned, it was a brilliant project to work on and very collaborative, and I still miss Leila and Jake, even though I’ve since written another book!
Amazon - https://amzn.to/3a1kroG
Kobo – https://bit.ly/2w0e32r
Google Play - http://bit.ly/3a4wjpQ
Bookshop UK - https://uk.bookshop.org/books/the-last-charm (Supporting independent bookshops)
Amazon - https://amzn.to/340NXLz
Waterstones - https://bit.ly/3lcBwSr
Saturday, 7 November 2020
I had a great time chatting with Catriona (aka Fab Book Fiend) last week! We talked about THE WINTER GARDEN, diversity, writing routine, festive fun and all things bookish.
Here's the link in case you missed it -
I hope you enjoy it!
Saturday, 31 October 2020
So, here we are again! Another four weeks have somehow slipped by and I'm writing up the #amwriting monthly round-up! I don't think it will come as a surprise to anyone that the month of October has been about two big writing projects for me.
THE WINTER GARDEN
publication day on October 3rd
What a truly memorable day that was and the celebrations have carried on all month thanks to everyone who has read and kindly posted a fabulous review AND the incredible blogging community who have kept the tour train running for four whole weeks! Thank you all so, so much! Your incredible support is always appreciated.
The second thing I've been working on, is the second draft of my 12th book,
A TASTE OF HOME
which will be released next April.
I'm not going to lie, this has been incredibly hard work. A close family bereavement and Covid finding its unwanted way into my darling daughter's university flat, have made maintaining focus more than difficult. I don't think I've ever taken so long to work through something but do you know what, in these difficult times, we have to occasionally cut ourselves a bit of slack, don't we?
I'm most fortunate in that I have a hugely supportive agent and publishing Team, so thank you for your kindness and the extended deadline.
Now I'm through the other side of the write I can relax a little, and I'm absolutely in love with the book and I think you will be too. It's a real pleasure to be back in wonderful Wynbridge again and especially for the summer!
We haven't visited in the sunnier months since COMING HOME TO CUCKOO COTTAGE was published and I've written seven books since then. There are wonderful new characters to get to know as well as lots old friends to catch up with. Click the link to the right of this post if you want to find out more!
So, that was October. Filled with long days, sadness and stress, but that's life sometimes, isn't it? Tomorrow the calendar flips to November and the countdown to Christmas will really be on. I daresay, it's going to be very different for all of us, but we're all in it together and we have fabulous fiction to fall into so let's take comfort in that!
Love and hugs
Wednesday, 21 October 2020
Saturday, 17 October 2020
Huge and heartfelt thanks to everyone who took part in THE WINTER GARDEN giveaway! I thought a food based answer would be a good idea, but your answers have got my belly rumbling! I haven't counted exact numbers but I think MINCE PIES were the most popular choice, closely followed by CHRISTMAS DINNER with all the trimmings.
As always I've used the random number generator to pick the winners for me.
First prizes go to -
Angelli Joyce Santiago
Runner up prizes go to -
Hannah - wrote with coffee
Massive congratulations to you all!
Please send your postal addresses to my inbox and I'll get your prizes in the post
Again, massive thanks to everyone who took part and don't worry if you missed out this time, I'll be running another giveaway very soon.
Love and hugs
Tuesday, 13 October 2020
Today I am absolutely delighted to be able to share with you the gorgeous holding cover for A TASTE OF HOME which will be published next April and which gives us a glimpse of just how beautiful the final cover will be! Isn't it pretty?
Buy the book...