GENRE: Romantic Suspense
IF I WANT YOU Blurb:
When local journalist, Tori Peterson, fails to prevent a child abduction outside her niece’s school, her horror and guilt sparks a vow to do whatever it takes to get little Abby Brady home to her parents.
While Tori battles the vile memories of her own kidnapping as a child, she accepts the help of widowed father, Mark Bolton. As he and Tori join forces with the local police, their attraction and intimacy grows…along with their fears for Abby.
Links are uncovered between Abby’s disappearance and Tori’s kidnapping, and Tori is forced to accept the monster who held her captive is back. But this time, Tori is all grown up, and there is no way she will let him hurt another little girl.
IF I WANT YOU Excerpt:
It wasn’t the just the smell of fresh air and sandalwood that alerted Tori to the fact Mark had joined them. It was the way his shadow fell over her as though covering her body with his wide, deep and potentially dangerous protectiveness.
She didn’t bother to look at him...even though her Cally was seriously looking. Tori lifted her hand in a half-hearted wave. “Take a seat, superhero.”
“I will.” He sat beside her. “Thank you.”
Every now and then, when she was alone at home, she’d picked up a book. And every now and then, Tori would toss the book across the room whenever she read the words, “the air crackled between them.” Well, whatever instantly plagued the atmosphere between her and Mark as she forced her gaze to his, she was loath to call it crackling. Maybe humming… screaming… burning… but definitely not crackling.
She swallowed. “What are you doing here?”
“Olivia’s staying at a friend’s. I was at a loose end.”
Despite her best efforts to fight her smile, it was ruthless and broke through her barriers like they were made of sugar paper. “Loose end, my ass. You were no doubt pacing around the house and doing everything you could not to get in the car and go get her.”
He smiled and put a glass on the table. “Merlot, right?”
I grew up in the outskirts of the British maritime city of Bristol. I lived with my parents, older brother and much-loved Norwegian Buhund called Butch, who I’ll never forget as he was my first dog. I now live in a small town close to the famous Georgian city of Bath with my husband of nineteen years and our two teenage daughters. My constant companion and latest dog is a chocolate Labrador called Tyler – unfortunately, I lost my beloved Maxie (a black Lab) in 2015.
As a kid, I was very much a tomboy and loved nothing more than playing in the fields, climbing rocks and trees and generally getting dirty. My mum used to despair of me whenever we had to dress up and I had to expose my bruised and cut knees beneath the hem of a dress I hated wearing, lol! These days, I’d say I’m somewhere in between tomboy and grown woman. I still live in jeans and flats day to day, but also love to dress up in dresses and high heels. A balance has been found!
When I’m not working, I love spending time with family and friends – spending far too much walking for miles only to stop in a country pub for lunch and not leave until hours later, lol! I’m also a keen knitter and TV watcher. The two go hand-in-hand as I can’t do one without the other.
Who are your favorite authors and favorite genres?
My favorite authors are Nora Roberts, Jill Shalvis, Philippa Gregory and Alex Grecian – I read a lot of romantic suspense, mainstream romance, historical (including biographies of past British kings and queens) and crime. I am a voracious reader with (I imagine!) a collection of over 400 books spread throughout my house…including the attic.
How long have you been writing?
I used to write stories as a child and bind them with ribbon, but stopped around ten or eleven and didn’t start again for many years. When I decided I wanted to write for a career around 2000, I started with short stories and articles and was thrilled when my work started to be published. It wasn’t until 2005 and both my daughters were in school that I embarked on my first novel. The Wild Rose Press published SEARCHING FOR SOPHIE in 2007 and the rest is history!
Where do you prefer to write? Do you need quiet, music, solitude? PC or laptop?
I am lucky enough to have a home office which I absolutely love – I work on a laptop on a huge white desk with two corkboards on the wall in front of me. On one board is the book I’m writing, and on the other is usually for the one I’m plotting – I concentrate on the one I’m writing most of the time, but use the plotting board for anything that comes to mind so it’s there when I come to work on the next book.
When I’m writing, I need complete silence but can work with background noise…usually my daughters…when I’m editing or working on promotion, interviews etc.
Are you a plotter or a panzer?
A total plotter! I start each book by searching the internet for pics of my hero, heroine and villain if I have one – I then complete character sketches for each. The sketches usually reveal the main characters’ goals, motivations and conflicts. I then write a chapter plan detailing a summary of the action and any significant character development. With that done, it’s (usually) fairly easy to write a 3-4 page synopsis.
Then the writing starts! I usually write the first draft from start to finish without looking back – the hard part comes with battling the initial draft into some sort of shape during the following drafts.
Do you do your research before you begin a new project, or as you go along?
With my contemporary books, I tend to research any questions that come up as I go along. For my romantic suspense, I have a fabulous police detective contact who I use A LOT when I have investigative procedures etc. to check on. My daughter is currently at university studying policing, so hopefully I’ll soon have a police contact under the same roof which will be fabulous!
For my historical work, I tend to do quite a bit of research around the issue I’m tackling and/or the setting at the time the book is taking place before I begin writing. Anything else that comes up, I tackle as and when, usually making use of my vast collection of reference books, the internet or local library.
Tell us about your writing schedule. Do you set goals? Do you write daily?
I am lucky enough to write full-time with one day off a week when I visit my parents – the rest of the week I treat my writing as I would any other job and work from 8.30am to 5.30pm with two dog walks and a short lunch break in between. The weekends are strictly reserved for family and/or friends unless I have a deadline looming.
My usual daily word goal is around 2,000 words, if I’m not editing or promoting a new release.
Tell us something about yourself that might surprise readers.
How about a couple of things?? One, is that my family and I were rescued by helicopter from a hotel roof during the 2010 French floods and the other is…I haven’t had my hair professionally cut since my wedding day in 1998. It’s so curly, I can get away with my husband or one of my daughters giving it a quick trim with the kitchen scissors!
I remember the story of your rescue. What an exciting and frightening event! What do you hope your writing brings to readers?
Ooh, great question! I suppose I like to think, as I write romance, that it brings them escapism and hope in a world that is looking ever more hopeless and scary. In addition to that, I hope I bring positive thoughts, laughter and belief that there’s someone out there for everyone.
What advice would you give to unpublished authors?
Write, write and write some more! Practice is key – also enroll in some affordable online courses. This was how I started, and they were invaluable in teaching me the technical side of writing. Find courses on point of view, setting, characterization etc. and apply everything you learn. Also, read. A lot…and not just in the genre you want to write.
Finally, when you begin writing a book, commit to finishing it until the very end. A lot of aspiring writers start project after project and never finish a piece of work. Lastly, the best piece of advice I EVER received was ‘give yourself permission to write a crappy first draft’. This changed my output beyond belief!
You can always edit it later ☺
|Rachel Brimble, Author|
Rachel is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association and Romance Writers of America, and was selected to mentor the Superromance finalist of So You Think You Can Write 2014 contest. When she isn’t writing, you’ll find Rachel with her head in a book or walking the beautiful English countryside with her family. Her dream place to live is Bourton-on-the-Water in South West England.
She likes nothing more than connecting and chatting with her readers and fellow romance writers. Rachel would love to hear from you!
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