Wednesday, 25 April 2012

My new book - Bon Voyage - is released!

Yes!  I've done it!  My new book - Bon Voyage - is finally released, and I'm now experiencing all those things that (I hope) other writer's experience every time they release a new book: I'm as nervous as hell!  And those nerves are something that will never go away, no matter how many books I release, as I sit here wondering how this book is going to be received, what people think of it, how many copies it's going to sell...

So, anyway, Bon Voyage - what's it all about then?  Well, I've stuck to the lighter side of romance again for this book, so this is another romantic comedy, a fun (I hope!) read that will (I hope!) give you a few laughs and a little bit of escapism as you join the characters I've created for this story on a two-week cruise around the Mediterranean.

Aimee Anderson is a thirty-something Geordie girl who's just undergone the rather humilating experience of being dumped by her fiance, Robbie, on the night of their engagement party.  So, what better way to try and forget that had happened than to take off on a holiday of a lifetime, or, in Aimee's case, a cruise around the Mediterranean on a mid-budget, freestyle cruise liner.  But it's a holiday all the same and, along with her best friend, Jemma, she's determined to have the time of her life on this trip.

90's British boy band Bon Voyage are about to make a comeback.  On a cruise ship.  The same cruise ship that Aimee and Jemma are about to begin their holiday on.  But, this soon-to-be-reformed boy band are now nudging middle age, and all is definitely not rosy in the garden of this reunion, not where the band's "front man", Andy Crabtree, and the former "bad boy" of the group, Danny Johnson, are concerned, anyway.  For a number of reasons their relationship had never been good, and sixteen years away from each other hasn't changed that, but Danny isn't in a good mood anyway - his marriage to Newcastle party princess and Z-List celebrity wannabe Davina Black is on the rocks, and he's not entirely sure that putting himself back in the limelight is what he really wants.  But what he does want is some fun.  Danny Johnson is all set to go back to his "bad boy" ways, until he meets Aimee Anderson.

So, when Aimee finally comes face to face with the man of her teenage dreams, is it actually possible that they could have the fun they both badly seem to need together?  Or is someone - or something - going to prevent Aimee from having a holiday to remember?

The story takes place over the 14 nights of the cruise, with each new "chapter" being a new port of call - and  I loved writing this book.  I've been on various cruise holidays, and I've put quite a few of the excursions I experienced, the people I met, the things I loved about those holidays, into this book - with a lot of artistic licence, obvioulsy! ;-)  And, being a bit of a Take That fan (it's a habit I can't shake, and believe me, I've tried) I just had to get a boy band in there somewhere, didn't I? And it gave me a good excuse to wonder what I would do if I ever came face to face with my favourite boy band member... ;-)

Now, this book isn't meant to change the world - it isn't going to be challenging for The Booker Prize or make J.K. Rowling quiver in her boots, but what I hope it does do is give anyone who reads it a little bit of escapism, because that's what I write - escapism.  It's supposed to take you out of your own world for a little bit and take you into the world of the characters, for just a few hours.  And if I manage to do that, then I'll be one very happy little indie author indeed. ;-)

Anyway, I hope you some of you will take the plunge and join Aimee, Jemma and Bon Voyage on their crazy, fun-filled and sometimes surpising cruise around the sunny Mediterranean, and if you've already bought your copy, then thank you. Your support is always, ALWAYS appreciated. More than you'll ever know...

Right, I'm off to walk the dog then grab myself a cup of tea and settle down to an afternoon of promoting, more promoting, and probably a little bit more promoting after that, too... But I will be stopping to watch The Apprentice later tonight. I could do with a laugh...

If you'd like to check out a small excerpt from the book, you can do so here - Bon Voyage - a little taster
 
And the book is now available to download for only £1.91/$3.08 from Amazon.co.uk  or Amazon.com

 

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Sex sells, doesn't it?

I think I might be addicted to Food Network UK, I mean, why else would I find myself getting quite excited about a new episode of Cupcake Wars?   It's quite worrying, but I actually look forward to catching up with this competitive cake-making cookery show every morning (I don't watch it when it's first aired at 9pm in the evening, come on!  I've got a husband - can you see him putting up with me passing comments about cream cheese frosting during peak time TV viewing?  I watch the repeats at 7.30am the next day), grabbing my daily dose of this quite addictive programme as I eat my breakfast.  I just can't bear the news first thing in the morning, you see.  BBC Breakfast News leaves me cold, Sky News has turned into a tabloid news station, and Daybreak - well, no thanks. Anyway, once today's Cupcake Wars had finished, I did do a little bit of channel hopping, but only because I couldn't be bothered to get up and start the vacuuming, and in doing so I came across someone being interviewed on Lorraine about how their book was being turned into a movie, so, because I'm an author (I am, okay?  Self-published or not, it's what I do), and because my ears prick up at the slightest mention of books and authors, I stayed tuned in to listen to this interview, not having a clue who this woman was, what her book was, or how she'd started her writing journey, until I pressed the info button on the Freesat box and found out she was British author E.L. James, and they were talking about her erotic romance novel, Fifty Shades of Grey.  Now, I'd heard about this book, heard it was supposed to be quite racy, a bit graphic, and I knew it was right up there on the Bestseller's List.  I just didn't realise it was that popular; that she had Hollywood producers queuing up to meet her to discuss the movie, that people were  clamouring over themselves to be involved in bringing her book to the big screen.   I really had no idea.  So, as I sat there watching this interview, being a relatively new author who's still very wet behind the ears as far as this business is concerned, I couldn't help wondering - again! - just how do you get your books out there and noticed in the way that some of these authors are managing to do?  What's the secret?  What makes a book stand out so much that people come flocking in their droves to buy it?  What do people really want to read about?

Oh, I know it's still a one-in-a-million chance that it'll happen to an indie author like me because people like me are extremely small fishes in an incredibly big pond, but people do sometimes manage to get people to sit up and take notice of their work and I just wish I knew how to make that happen.  Maybe it's all just hype.  Create hype and people will follow, if only to see what all the fuss is about.  And whilst not all of those people will bite, a fair few may just stick around to see what's going on.  I mean, I've got the radio on here in the office, and an advert's just come on telling me about, and I quote, "the movie everybody's talking about" - which is Ewan McGregor's new one, Salmon Fishing in the Yemen.  Now, for starter's, everybody is not talking about it because I'm not.  In fact, nobody in this house is talking about it, nor are they talking about it next door or in my mother's house, so therefore (if we're going to be pedantic - which I am, for the purpose of the point of I'm trying to make, and I'll get there, I promise, just stick with me), everybody is not talking about that movie.  However, just by saying that, by making everybody think everybody is talking about it, it creates that little bit of hype that just might draw a few more people into the cinema to watch the film.  Do you get what I'm trying to say here?  Bang on about something for long enough and people will turn up to see what's going on, that's what I'm trying to say.  I just think, however, that if I banged on about my books all the time it would have the opposite effect, but there you go.  Like I said, I've still got to get to grips with the art of marketing... "The book everybody's talking about... No Matter What by Michelle Betham..."  Ah, if only... But a girl can dream... ;-)

Now, I have no idea how the extremely likeable (it was a good interview on Lorraine) E.L James marketed her books, but whatever she did people really did sit up and take notice, didn't they?  I mean, I can only dream about hitting the heights of the Top 100 Bestseller's List.  So, and here's the big question, is it really just because the book Fifty Shades of Grey is (so I've heard) all about sex?  Is that the reason why women are - apparently - passing this book around like it's the Holy Grail or something?  I have absolutely no idea, but whatever is going on, me just writing about the book this morning has actually made me want to read the thing so something, somewhere is working!  So, okay - sex sells, doesn't it?  Is erotic romance really becoming the big thing at the moment?  Do people really want to read about all that on the way to work?  Discussing S&M scenes over the photocopier;  is it really that popular a genere?  Because, if it is, I might just give it a go!  My first two books - No Matter What and See You At The Show - both had a fair few sex scenes but they were scenes I actually toned down because I thought they might be a bit much, but now, well, I wish I'd left the bugger's in their original state!  Still, you live and learn...  And anyway, those books aren't erotic fiction, they're contemporary romance, albeit it a little bit on the steamy side, in parts.

But I am certainly not ruling out writing something a lot more steamy in the future - why not?  And I'm not just jumping on the erotic fiction bandwagon here, it's something I've always wanted to dabble in, I just wasn't sure how popular it was or how much of a call for that kind of book there was.  But, it seems, there certainly is a market for it.  Sex does sell, apparently.  Still got to market the things once they're written though, and that's still something I have yet to master.  But, if you can write a decent book with a plot that people are interested in, concerning a subject that makes people sit up and take notice - and if you can get the marketing of that book just right, then you can certainly hit the dizzy heights of success.  Oh, and I'm also more than aware that I've probably done more marketing for Fifty Shades of Grey than I've managed to get for me own books here, but there you go. 

So, congratulations to Ms. James on the success of her books.  And for making Time Magazine's list of the Top 100 Most Influential People in the World.  You've cracked it, missus!  Now, if you've got any tips you might fancy passing on, I'm more than happy to listen... ;-)

Right - I'd better get back to finishing off me own humble little novel then.  Book number 4 and nowhere near anything erotic, but if you like a bit of romantic comedy... Okay, okay, no plugging today.  There'll be enough of that when the thing's released...


Sunday, 15 April 2012

A few random weekend ramblings...

Is it just me, or does anyone else find that new advert for Marks & Spencer's (or M&S as it appears to be called now) really annoying?  Or am I just being a miserable cow?  Because, I don't know what it is, but when those first few bars of Gary Barlow singing The Beatles classic Here Comes The Sun strike up I'm racing for the remote control like an Olympic athlete before I have to endure a glimpse of Myleene Klass and Danni Minogue in their fabulous M&S dresses taking us through the perfect British summer (despite the fact the ad was actually filmed in South Africa - mind you, trying to find a day that perfect in Britain is a feat in itself, I suppose), because that's what M&S tell us the advert is supposed to do - take us all on a journey through the perfect British summer.

It's not mine, mate!
Well, as far as I could tell there was no sign of Twiggy in M&S wellies or Jamie Redknapp in a nice, smart M&S raincoat battling their way through a lovely June day of torrential rain and high winds because, in my experience, that's closer to a British summer than anything that advert trys to portray.  Anyway, all I know is that, if I let that advert get to the end, you know, the bit where Gary Barlow's sitting round a campfire still ruining that Beatles song - everyone still wearing their fabulous M& S outfits - I actually break out in a rash!  I just can't bear it, and I have no idea why!  I know that - despite being a Take That fan, for my sins - Gary Barlow annyoys the hell out of me since he decided to become an X Factor judge, and I've just never taken to Myleene Klass.  And M&S has never been my store of choice, but why that advert irritates me so much I have no idea.  Maybe it's because I'm working class and so far, none of my summers have been anything like that advert... I mean, my perfect summer's day is a walk along South Shields beach with a bag of chips, so what would I know?

David Walliams - A BGT revelation for me!
However, someone who used to really irritate me but no longer does anymore is David Walliams.  Surely we all know who David Walliams is, don't we?   One half of the Little Britain team.  Well, when I heard he was going to be a judge on Britain's Got Talent I had my head in my hands thinking I may have to avoid this year's BGT like the plague and therefore forego my dose of Ant & Dec (they're like my guilty pleasure) because, at the time, I thought him about as funny as toothache - although, marginally funnier than Ricky Gervais, but don't get me started on himBut, a couple of weeks into Britain's Got Talent, and I am loving him!  He's hilarious!  Especially when he starts winding Simon Cowell up (don't get me started on him, either).  I actually look forward to watching Mr. Walliams on BGT more than I do the acts, although Pudsey the dancing dog from a week or so ago was an absolute star!

Danny O'Donoghue - Making The Voice UK a pleasure to watch.
Now, moving onto another man who's turning out to be a bit of a revelation for me is the lovely Danny O'Donoghue from The Script.  He's currently a judge on The Voice UK, and before I saw him on that I wasn't really fussed one way or the other about him.  I like The Script, I like their music, but I wasn't altogether sure that he was the best choice to be one of the judges on the show.  However, now I think he's the perfect judge, and if I was on that show, I'd be wanting him to turn his chair around and have me on his team!  Or Tom Jones.  I really like Tom Jones.  Always have.  Took my mother to see him live decades ago and I was hooked!  Love that voice of his... anyway, where was I?  Oh, yeah.  Danny O'Donoghue.  Yeah, I think he's going to make a great mentor for the acts he's chosen on The Voice UK, and it's turning out to be a show I'm really, really enjoying.   And Mr. Donoghue, well, he's actually not all that bad to look at either.  Which is always a bonus! ;-)

Anyway, I've rambled on enough for now.  I shouldn't even be writing blog posts when I'm in the middle of editing my new book but being easily distracted is a talent I seem to excel in.  But that book won't edit itself so I'd better get cracking!  Have a fabulous what's-left-of-the-weekend!



Friday, 13 April 2012

Today, I'm banging my own drum... but just a little bit...

In a week where reviews seem to have ruled the roost again in the life of this indie author - over the past 4 days I've had both a fabulous 5 star and a gut-wrenching 1 star review for the same book - I've decided to end this week on a high note.  And I'm going to do something I don't usually do because it just isn't me - but today, in this blog post, I'm going to bang my own drum (but only very lightly!) and showcase some of the comments people have made about all 3 of my books.  A self-centred ego boost?  Maybe.  I'm a writer, after all, and even though I'm one of those people who carries very little confidence around with them and doesn't always feel comfortable when people praise me for any reason, I guess all us creative types have an ego in there somewhere, don't we?  And it never hurts to give that ego -no matter how small it may be - a little boost now and again. 

So, here we go...  what do people who've read my books really think of them... ?  Oh, and the majority of these comments have not come from my friends, okay? Some were even from proper book reviewer's. ;-) 

What people have said about my epic, two-decade-spanning, sexy Hollywood romance, No Matter What

This book is Martina Cole meets Dynasty meets Footballer's Wives (the good bits) and is a stonking book. If you are looking for a fast read, it's not for you, but it's a shame to miss it.... (Read this review in full at ciao.co.uk.)

***

... That feeling of knowing the characters so well but still being surprised by their decisions. The passing of the years just made you want to keep reading and the length of the story enveloped you in a smug happiness that it wasn't about to end abruptly and leave you hanging. For such a small price you can have what I can only describe as a really excellent story... 

***

This was a great read. Longer than most of the books I have bought on my kindle and you certainly get your money's worth. Didn't want to put it down and couldn't wait to get to the end to see what happens to India.

***

The characters all felt very real and believable, and I was able to picture and feel their presence as I read the book. The inclusion of Tynemouth, Newcastle and Northumberland, gave the book a personal touch for me as a 'native' and linking the North East of England with Hollywood worked really well.

***

... just like in life, you’re not always going to like the outcome. You’re not always going to agree with the things a person does or how they handle a situation. And the best person does not always win in the end. The least you can ask for is a few hours of escape. The most is that the book makes you feel strongly, one way or another. And this will most definitely make you feel strongly about each and every character. Well done, Ms. Betham! (Read this review in full at Sarah's Point of View)


What people have said about my racy rock 'n' roll-meets-the-world-of-politics romance, See You At The Show

... I enjoyed reading it and, for me, the story really took off at the half way mark when the stakes were raised and with the tension building, I really didn't know which way the story line was going...  (Read this review in full at Love reading love books.)

***

... I really liked this book! It had a Jackie Collins feel about it! Was quite racy and very sexy! I'd recommend it!  

***

... I love the complexity of Stevie's character and the way she is in a male dominated world but still manages to hold her own! Though even the strongest of us need help sometimes and this is also shown...

***

... Rock stars, biker chicks and sexy politicians - it's got it all and I devoured it...


***

Oh, how I needed this book.  I needed a kick ass character like Stevie Stone.  I needed a love triangle (love square may be more appropriate in this situation, really) full of drama, set in a background of rockstars, bars, and also in the polar opposite political arena.  (Read this review in full at Whiskey and Books.)

***

What a fantastic book! Loved it! Loved it! Loved it!


What people have said about my Tenerife-based comedy romance, Too Much Trouble in Paradise

... it is a book begging to be read on a sun lounger; however it is also a lovely little night time read before bed, although the cliff hanger chapters suck you into rebelling way past your bedtime!

***

What a good book, I couldnt put it down. Its a real what is she going to do page turner. What made it enjoyable for me - really likeable characters, fast moving, twists and turns, down to earth and a bit of humour...

***

... You can't help but love the characters & who knew the world of darts was so glam!
A feel good book, it made me laugh & reminded me how fun chick lit can be!  

***

... The characters are very real and believable. Living in the Canary's myself I could relate to all the references to Tenerife. A five star read.  

***

... I thoroughly enjoyed this book, great chick lit that will relax you, make you smile and dream of sunny islands, cocktails...and darts!:)  (Read this review in full at Books to Remember .)

***

... Too Much Trouble in Paradise is a light, fun read that will keep readers guessing who Molly will choose until the very end. Molly is a likeable character who is genuinely looking for love but struggling with her own insecurities and trust issues. Paul is the character readers will love to hate and Fran is a loyal friend to Molly. Their dialogue and interactions are sharp, funny, and definitely entertaining. The story moves at a quick pace, flowing seamlessly as Molly figures out what she really wants and gets a few surprises along the way. Too Much Trouble in Paradise will delight fans of clever, dynamic romantic comedies. (Read this review in full at Chick Lit Bee.)


So there we have it.  Some of the lovely things people have said about my first 3 novels.  And no, I'm not saying all my reviews have been perfect - they haven't.  Of course I've had one or two dodgy ones, but you can't please everyone, can you?  So, if you want to see all of my reviews - good and bad - you can do so by popping over to Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.com or Goodreads, and make your own mind up. ;-) 

Alternatively, if you quite fancy trying one of these books for yourself, they're all available from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com and are priced between 77p - £1.97 or $1.23 - $3.15, depending on the book.

Or, if you're a member of Amazon Prime, all my books can be borrowed for FREE from the Kindle Owner's Lending Library.

Right, plugging over, I'm off to finish editing my 4th book, due for release very soon... watch this space...


Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Meet The Author - Hardit Singh

It's time for another of my 'Meet the Author' interviews, a chance for us to find out a little bit more about some of the fabulous and diverse indie authors that are out there, and today it's my absolute pleasure to talk to Hardit Singh - writer of everything from crime thrillers, mystery and suspense, to romance; both short stories and full-length novels.

So, let's find out a little bit more about Hardit, his books, and just what it is that motivates him to write...

 
First of all, tell us a little bit about you...
Born in the South West of England, studied Information Technology and worked for a few years in the industry. Quickly discovered that I wanted to make writing my priority.


When did you first know that you wanted to write?
I can't remember the exact moment, but I was studying during my degree and I think it was after reading a book, I thought I would love to try and write a novel. The idea didn't seem to scare me, I was more intrigued and excited about the challenge and possibilities.


What - if any - are the influences behind your books?  What motivates you to write?
I get my influences from everywhere, books, news, TV, a conversation with somebody. Usually I'm always on the look out for new ideas and when one comes around I try to put myself in the best position to capture it.

My biggest motivation is to help people. That my book in some way help the reader, whether through escapism or inspiration through my characters.



Tell us a little bit about your books...
My books tend to be crime novels and I generally like creating a lot of pace in my book and keep things moving. I love to write about issues that effect society such as in my latest novel sex trafficking. I plan to write more books in areas like these and hopefully in the near future I can write one on activism.


What's your writing process?  Do you have a regular routine when you're writing a book?
I don't outline my books, I usually have a beginning and end in mine and maybe a few big events, but this all moves as I write and I'm constantly finding new paths for the story to go. 
I always work in the mornings and afternoons, I find I'm much more productive in the morning. I start with editing the previous days writing and then begin writing the next part of the story.


What do you like to do when you're not writing?  
I love doing physical things like going to the gym and hiking.


Have you got any future projects in the pipeline that you can tell us about?
I'm currently preparing myself to create a series of police procedural novels. Just need to do some research before I feel comfortable enough to write about this world.


Thank you, Hardit, for taking the time to answer my questions.  It's been great to talk to you and find out a little bit more about you and your work.  I wish you every success for the future.

Hardit's books are available to download now from Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.com and Smashwords.

You can also find out more about Hardit and his books on his official Website. 


Monday, 9 April 2012

5 songs that remind me of...

...an event, place or time in my life.  I've been tagged by my fab Twitter friend @icetuckerV2 to think of 5 such songs - and I'm more than happy to take up the challenge, because I have loads of songs that remind me of so many things so... here are 5 of my favourites...

Frankie Valli - Grease  



 
Summer of 1978, standing in a queue outside the Classic Cinema in Monkseaton, waiting to see this movie, that's what this song reminds me of.  Everyone - and I mean, everyone, I knew was in that bloody queue, and we all stood there for hours waiting for the doors to open so we could finally get to see this much-anticipated film, and I was only 9 or 10 at the time but I'd been dying to see it!  And it lived up to all my expectations - it's now one of my all-time-favourite movies, and I never, ever tire of watching it.  In my heart, I will always aspire to be a Pink Lady...


Abba - Summer Night City


The first record (vinyl - yes, I'm that old!) I ever bought with my own money for my first ever record player that my Grandad bought me for my 10th birthday in 1978.  I remember being so excited at getting that present because I'd wanted a record player for ages - it was dark blue, with a lid, I can still remember it now - and I also remember runing into the record shop in North Shields that day clutching my money to buy my first ever 7 inch single... ah, those were the days...


The Source feat. Candi Staton - You Got The Love


Every time I hear this song it reminds me of a Take That gig me and the girls went to at the GMex in Manchester back in the 90's.  Before the guys came on stage the music blasting out around the arena was one of those Best Dance Albums in the World... Ever!, and everyone was up on their feet, dancing, getting into the mood for a great gig (which it was - for the record) and I just remember this song playing as the time got nearer for the band to take to the stage, and I just remember feeling so happy!  The early 90's were a fab time for me anyway, and I loved this song, but for some reason it will always remind me of that gig, and a fabulous night.  Always...

Cher - Believe


 
Not an overly huge fan of this song, but it will always remind me of the first holiday me and my husband (or fiance as he was back then) took abroad together to Palma Nova in Majorca back in the late 90's.  We stayed in a beautiful little all inclusive hotel and this song was nearly always played every night before the entertainment started, and every time I hear it I always remember what a fabulous holiday that was.  So good that we returned to that same hotel on two more occasions, and it never disappointed.  Good times...


Nickelback - Do This Anymore


This song reminds me of writing my very first book, No Matter What.  In fact, Nickelback provided practically the whole soundtrack to that book, and I have no real idea why, but their music - especially a lot of stuff from The Long Road album - inspired that book a great deal.  The lyrics to some of those songs just spoke to me in a way I can't explain, but sometimes, when I played that album - and this song in particular - I could picture scenes in my head, picture the way I wanted the story to go, the way I wanted characters to react.  It was almost like I could create a mini-movie in my head, thanks to this song.  And now every time I hear this track it will always remind me of No Matter What, and how much I loved creating that story - my first literary baby.  And a book that will always be very special to me - and this song will always remind me of that.


So there we have it.  5 songs that remind me of 5 special times/events/places.  Although I'm sure, if I sat here long enough, I could think of at least a dozen more.

So, what about you?  Have you got 5 songs that remind you of 5 times/events/places in your life?  Think about it... Because I bet you have. :-)


Wednesday, 4 April 2012

Bon Voyage! We have a cover...

So, here it is.  What do you think?  Thanks to the help of my ever-wonderful husband, my soon-to-be-released new comedy romance, Bon Voyage, now has a cover!  There I was, quietly watching 'Holby City', wondering if Michael Spence was ever gonna shave that beard off (although, I have to say, I actually think he looks better with it) whilst my lovely husband - without even telling me he was doing so - was working away on my book cover.  Thankfully, I'd been made aware of its existence and had a brief chat about fonts and what have you before 'The Syndicate' started, because I do like my Tuesday night BBC1 dramas!  Well, we all need that little bit of down-time and some escapism of our own, don't we? ;-)

Anyway, in just a few week's time, Bon Voyage will be ready to launch, and yes, I'm going to use as many nautical/maritime terms as I possibly can with regards to marketing this cruise-themed novel! ;-)  Let's put it this way, if we're talking about the book launch in terms of, say, getting ready for a holiday, I'm at what I'd call the "packing" stage - I know what I want to take with me, I've just got to make sure it all fits into the suitcase!  I'll translate that, actually, because I'm not even sure it makes sense!  What I mean is, the book is written, I've read through it a couple of times now, the story is there, there aren't that many changes to be made, and it really shouldn't be too long before it finally sets sail, out into the big wide world.  Okay.  I'm just talking rubbish now.  This trying to think of nautical/maritime references isn't quite as easy as I first thought!

But, like I said, it's almost ready.  Almost.  But not quite.  Yeah, I've learnt lessons, and this book isn't going out until I'm as sure as I can be that it's ready.  It isn't a great work of literature, and it isn't going to change the world, but it might - it just might - make some good summer reading, whether you're lying on a sunlounger or not!

It's got sunshine, it's got beautiful ports of call from Corsica to Casablanca; it's got two thirty-something women on the cruise of a lifetime, it's got a romance writer, a bloke who looks like he's walked straight off the set of Fantasy Island - and it's got a boy band.  Oh, and a good dose of romance.  Of course!  Bon Voyage -ready to launch May 2012!

Right, I'd better get back to the editing then, hadn't I...?

Want to check out a little taster of Bon Voyage? You can read the first few pages here... Bon Voyage - a small excerpt.

Oh, and if you're looking for a bit of a summer read right now, something to transport you off to sunnier climes and give you a bit of a giggle, why not check out my Tenerife-based comedy romance, Too Much Trouble in Paradise?  Just a thought... ;-)