Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Brook Cottage Books is thrilled to welcome Rachel Brimble to the blog with a great guest post AND  a giveaway at the end of the post. The giveaway is for 1 x signed copy of What Belongs to Her plus a tote bag featuring the cover of The Temptation of Laura. 

A UK Writer Writing for the US… 

I often get asked why, and how, I ended up writing for the US market when I am a Brit who has had a single trip to New York. What do I know about America? The answer is simple: I couldn’t find a UK agent or publisher who liked my work. 

After 35 agent rejections, I began to wonder if I was dreaming an impossible dream of becoming a published romance author. Could I write? Did I even have a voice? Was it time for me to face the truth and get a ‘real job’? All these questions depressed and stripped me of motivation, but still I couldn’t shake off the soul-deep need to write. 
I was very close to giving up but every time I read a great romance, or heard of another author’s success in a magazine or online, it pushed me forward. I attended some fantastic courses both in person and online and each time, the little voice in my head telling me I can succeed was reawakened. 

Then in 2006, a US online friend suggested I try a new romance publisher, The Wild Rose Press. I submitted my completed 65,000 word novel and it was accepted within five weeks. I was ecstatic! Tears, laughter, dancing and screaming doesn’t even cover the state I was in that wonderful day! 

Knowing I would soon see my novel in print was all the motivation I needed to carry on. Five novels followed and were all published by small US presses over four years. In 2010, I saw another long-time online friend in the US had secured an agent. Could I try a US agent with book seven? 

I could and I did! 

In 2011, I secured an American agent as well as pitching a novel to Harlequin at a conference here in the UK – when the editor told me I had a ‘global voice’ and was more suited to the US market rather than the UK, my determination was secured and I was finally happy with letting the UK market go. Some things are just not meant to be! 
Since then, I have signed five books with Harlequin Superromance and four books with Kensington. I am proud and happy. What more does a writer want? 

What Belongs To Her is the third book in my ongoing series with Harlequin. Set in the fictional UK seaside town of Templeton Cove, with an entirely British cast of characters, it proves aspiring writers must write what they love and believe some day, their baby or babies will find a home. Mine did!

1st March 2013
She's ready to take back what's hers. 
Since the moment a local crime boss claimed ownership of her family's fairground, Sasha Todd has dreamed of righting the wrong. Now it's time to act, and backing down from the man's estranged son is definitely not an option. After all, giving up her legacy to hot-blooded John Jordon means losing the chance to finally heal the wounds in her past. 
Stopping John in his tracks—and resisting the sizzle between them—is Sasha's best defense. But there's more to him than she thought, which changes everything. With what matters most at stake, she'll have to risk a brand-new future with John, or walk away from the man whose heart belongs to her.


The machine rumbled to life and John froze.
What the hell??
Gripping the lap bar, he hauled it up and stood. Sasha Todd gracefully skipped up onto the steel platform beneath the carriages. She was dressed in white shorts that revealed her long slender legs and a simple red T-shirt. His breath caught. Did she have any idea how stunning she was?
She smiled, mischief glinting in her black eyes. “Sit down, John. Let’s take a ride.”
He blinked. “Are you crazy?”
“What’s the matter? Don’t you like rides?”
He tried and failed to muster some semblance of authority as the machine started to move. “No. Turn this thing off.”
She quirked an eyebrow and curved her fingers over the back of the carriage. “Yet you want to run this place? You can’t do that without knowing the fairground inside out. That includes the rides. Move over, I’m jumping onboard.”
Their eyes locked and once again, his tongue stuck to the roof of his mouth. Why the hell did the woman managing the fairground have to be so physically arresting? God, he wanted to write about her. Describe her in words in a vain attempt to let the damn world know how unnervingly beautiful she was.
He lowered into the seat, steadfastly avoiding her gaze. He concentrated on keeping his pride in place and not giving in to the temptation to grip the bar again. The ride picked up speed and the carriage shifted as she hauled herself up and sat down next to him, pulling the lap bar down with her.
The distinct smell of something musky and sexy drifted as she tossed her long hair over her shoulders. The tendrils whispered across his cheek and John closed his mouth, trapping the inconceivable urge to groan.
She wriggled her behind deeper into the seat and settled back with a sigh. “So…what’s the plan today? Enjoy the fair? Cook the books? Fire me?”
Attraction gave way to irritation, fueled by the nonchalance in her voice. “You do realize this thing is moving, right?”
She shrugged and glanced around before focusing entirely on him. “Sure. Now is as good a time as any to get acquainted, don’t you think?”
John swallowed. Jesus, her eyes are ebony black, like two huge pieces of jet. He snapped his face forward. “Do you know something?” He slid his arm across the back of the carriage above her shoulders. “If you want to play some stupid game in a bid to annoy me, that’s fine. I’m the one in control here, whether you like it or not.”

Rachel lives with her husband and two young daughters in a small town near Bath in the UK.  After having several novels published by small US presses, she secured agent representation in 2011. In 2012, she sold two books to Harlequin Superromance and a further three in 2013. She also writes Victorian romance for Kensington--her debut was released in April 2013 and she has since signed for three more. 

Rachel is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association and Romance Writers of America. When she isn’t writing, you’ll find Rachel with her head in a book or walking the beautiful English countryside with her family and beloved black Lab, Max. 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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3 Responses so far.

  1. It's great to see a British author writing for Harlequin featuring British characters and set in a British seaside town. Congrats Rachel.

  2. Hi Manda!

    Thanks for being here and your kind comment - as far as I know I am the first ever for Superromance to write British characters in a British setting. I am very proud!

    Good luck with the contest :)

    Rachel x

  3. Thank you for hosting on tour today JB.

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