Category Archives: Authors

Publication day! #UnderTheMistletoe @AvonbooksUK @BlakeFriedmann

Doing a happy dance because Under the Mistletoe comes out today!

This was an unusual book to write. I struggled to get the messages spot on. Author and artist Sue McDonagh was my research source for Laurel’s life as an artist and when she read an early version she said, ‘I wondered how you were going to make it all come right in the end.’ I replied, ‘So did I!’

The story was sparked by a memory of something that happened to someone else and I’ve pretty much used her situation. I didn’t know her personally, but the incident was much talked about locally. Opinions were divided as to who was at fault but I do remember, even in my teens, being astonished and affronted when someone said, ‘But surely, it was just horseplay that got out of hand?’

Was it? Read Laurel’s story and see what you think.

Buy Under the Mistletoe in ebook

Buy Under the Mistletoe as a paperback

Buy Under the Mistletoe in audio

Snuggle up with a mince pie, a cup of cocoa and the most heartwarming book this Christmas from the bestselling Sue Moorcroft.

Christmas. A time for family, friends – and rekindling old flames…

When Laurel returns to the village of Middledip, she’s looking for a quiet life. Adjusting to her recent divorce, she’s ready to spend some time getting back on her feet amidst the glorious snow-dusted countryside.

Yet, life in Middledip is far from straightforward. Coming to the aid of her sister, Rea, as she navigates her own troubles, Laurel barely has a moment to think about where her own life is going.

However, time stands still when she sees her old flame, Grady Cassidy – and it’s soon as if they’ve never been apart. But through her happiness, Laurel remembers why she left the village all those years ago, as she recalls a dark night and Grady’s once-wayward brother, Mac…

Can Laurel learn to forgive and forget? Or will her chances of Christmas under the mistletoe with Grady remain a dream?

An enchanting, festive read, perfect for fans of Sarah Morgan and Carole Matthews.

PRAISE FOR SUE MOORCROFT:

‘This book is a tapestry of all the feels and emotions – loved it!’ Milly Johnson

‘Evocative, engaging and gloriously romantic.’ Cathy Bramley

‘A glorious adventure… perfect escapism to brighten the greyest of days.’ Fiona Gibson

‘Full of sunshine and secrets.’ Heidi Swain

‘It whisked me off to sun-drenched Italy…I could feel the heat on my face and taste the wine!’ Phillipa Ashley

‘Sue’s novels are the perfect escape. You’re guaranteed a warm and cosy read whatever the weather.’ Bella Osborne

‘A magical escape with all the ingredients of a perfect romance.’ Helen Rolfe

’An absolute gem – I just couldn’t put it down!’ Christina Courtenay

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Filed under Apple Books, Audio, Authors, Avon Books UK, Blake Friedmann Literary Agency, Book bloggers, christmas, ebook, Launch, Paperback, publication day, readers, reading, Sue Moorcroft, Winter book, Winter read, Writers, writing

Sometimes you just have to admit when an idea isn’t working #amwriting #writingcommunity #writingtips

I generally like to think I have the hang of putting a plot together. I’ve published eighteen novels, a writing guide, writing courses, hundreds of short stories and more than a dozen serials.

Recently, though, for the first time in years, I gave up on an idea (though I termed it ‘putting it on the back burner’ because that sounds less defeatist than ‘gave up’). I wrestled with it in a large notebook and a small notebook. I printed out what I had and made notes on it. I cut bits out of a notebook and tried to force some kind of order and spark into the operation. I even wrote with different coloured pens.

Nope.

What had seemed like a great idea on Sunday was dead by Tuesday, even though I had what seemed like some promising elements:

  • A setting – Malta, one of my favourite places in the world
  • conflicts
  • a past issue between hero and heroine (not always necessary but often helpful)
  • sympathetic characters (designed for readers to like)
  • unsympathetic characters (who readers will probably curl their lips at)
  • secondary characters
  • a pivotal character (again not vital but I like to recognise when there’s a character without whom the plot wouldn’t work)
  • appropriate careers for hero and heroine
  • a contemporary issue to shine a light on

…but the idea didn’t ‘work’.

So, what went wrong? I think I had a list, not a plot. If a plot is a map through a story, mine had no roads – just the places, and nothing to link them. It feels like a pretty rookie error that I forgot my own first principle – make the conflicts of hero and heroine in some way impact upon one another. Make him want to develop a property and her have reason to try and stop the development; or have them both want to help an elderly character but have opposing views on how to do it. In other words, make sure they have a stake in each other’s story.

I didn’t start in the wrong place in my story, I started in the wrong place in my planning.

Not every writer plans, but I do. My planning is often haphazard, the method varies from book to book, but, as I’ve just found out, it’s important to get it right.

Luckily – I have another idea to work on, so I think I’ll just get on with that.

If you liked this post you may also like:

Should I write a prologue?

What happens in Chapter One?

Chapter Two and beyond

Final Chapter(s) and (possible) Epilogue 

Act, react and interact – breathing life into my characters

My plotty head, Fiction Land and my dad

Descriptive writing

Learn about publishing

Agent or no agent?

Sue Moorcroft’s recipe for a short story

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Filed under Authors, Malta., Plotting, readers, reading, Sue Moorcroft, Writers, writing, writing tip

#UnderTheMistletoe #Lakeland voucher competition @AvonBooks

Letting you know about this fab competition run by Avon Books UK in the run up to publication of Under the Mistletoe.

ENTER HERE

And be in with a chance of winning a £100 Lakeland voucher! To enter, all you have to do is answer one simple question by Wednesday 27th October at 23:59pm. Terms and conditions apply. Good luck!

Under the Mistletoe will be published on on October 28th 2021. Don’t miss out! Preorder it here:

Preorder Under the Mistletoe in paperback

Preorder Under the Mistletoe as an ebook

Preorder Under the Mistletoe in audio

Christmas. A time for family, friends – and rekindling old flames…. 

When Laurel returns to the village of Middledip, she’s looking for a quiet life. Adjusting to her recent divorce, she’s ready to spend some time getting back on her feet amidst the glorious snow-dusted countryside.

Yet, life in Middledip is far from straightforward. Coming to the aid of her sister, Rea, as she navigates her own troubles, Laurel barely has a moment to think about where her own life is going.

However, time stands still when she sees her old flame, Grady Cassidy – and it’s soon as if they’ve never been apart. But through her happiness, Laurel remembers why she left the village all those years ago, as she recalls a dark night and Grady’s once-wayward brother, Mac….

Can Laurel learn to forgive and forget? Or will her chances of Christmas under the mistletoe with Grady remain a dream?

An enchanting, festive story, perfect for fans of Sarah Morgan and Carole Matthews. 

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Filed under Audio, Authors, Avon Books UK, Book bloggers, christmas, competition, ebook, HarperCollins, Launch, Paperback, Preorder, readers, reading, Sue Moorcroft, Winter book, Winter read, Writers, writing

Publication day interview with author M W Arnold @mick859 @WildRosePress

Hi Mick,

Welcome to my blog. We’ve known each other a long time and it’s my pleasure to welcome you to talk about your writing and your brand new book, A Wing and a Prayer. Congratulations on its publication today!

Hi Sue. Firstly, may I say a big thank you for hosting me on your blog, this is quite an honour and a pleasure.

Tell us a little about your background.

Well, I went straight into the Royal Air Force from school and stayed, quite happily traversing the world, for the next 16 years. I really have to thank the Queen for paying for my excursions, if we ever meet. I had a wonderful time! I then left as I’d been married for the last 5 years and the Lady Wife and I had lived in 4 different married quarters so it was time to settle down. I’m still not certain I’m used to being a civvie yet!

What made you write about the Air Transport Auxiliary rather than the Royal Air Force? You served with the RAF for many years, didn’t you?

It was pure chance. I know you’ve probably heard that from a few authors, that they stumbled into a project – well, I really did. I’d been pretty ill and hadn’t been able to pick up any of my unfinished projects. Then it was suggested that I try something new, something which didn’t bring back bad memories. I happened to be watching a television program about the ATA, ‘Spitfire Women’, and the next thing I know, I’m fishing around on the internet. By the end of the day, I had a rough outline of a story and a number of characters fleshed out. My interest in that time period came in handy and before I knew what was really happening, I was tapping away. 

How did you feel when you were offered a contract by Wild Rose Press? Had you published other books already?

My flabber was well and truly gasted! You could have knocked me down with a feather. I had a romantic drama published back in December 2017 and shortly after, that’s when my ill health kicked in. When the contract offer came through, I suppose that was when I first started to think that, perhaps, just maybe, I am an author.

I know the next book’s already underway. Tell us a little about that. Does it follow on?

Book 2 is finished and now with my editor, actually, and is set about 6 months later, around May 1943. This one is more personal, in that the characters find themselves in more peril than the first. There’s a meeting with a big US movie star where things don’t go as planned and which the mystery – a little more minor than in ‘A Wing and a Prayer’ – is centred around. One of the girls gets married and then has to deal with the broken relationship that’s her little sister. I guess that’s what this one is all about, the various relationships between the girls and their various friends and siblings. We see the best of people in the worst of situations I like to think, here.

Do you have a plan to write more books after that to make a series?

When the contract offer came in, I swiftly got to know my editor and pitched some ideas to her. This one is now officially subtitled, ‘Broken Wings – book 1’, so I guess it looks like it. With book 2 with my editor, I’m about a quarter to a third of the way through the first draft of book 3; and this is the Christmas one! I’m having a lot of fun researching and writing this one, especially in making sure my American character gets the full-on mid-war yuletide. I don’t think she knows what she’s let herself in for!

Thanks for coming over to chat and celebrating your achievement.

Many, thanks again for having me, Sue. I’ve had a wonderful time.

The Air Transport Auxiliary Mystery Club!

Four ladies of the Air Transport Auxiliary bond over solving the mystery of who was responsible for the death of one’s sister. Battling both internal forces and those of the country’s mutual enemies, the women find that both love and dangers are cousins cut from the same ilk.

This is a sweeping story of love, death and betrayal set against the backdrop of war when ties of friendship are exceptionally strong.

Image of M W Arnold
M W Arnold

A Wing and a Prayer – Extract

“Mind the duck!”

Mary’s warning was a smidgeon too late. Betty turned her head toward the shout just when she needed to do the exact opposite and keep her eyes on the path. 

“Aargh!” cried Betty as she was sent sprawling to the ground. 

A loud, angry, “Quack! Quack!” was followed by a flurry of wings and feathers as the slightly stunned duck half flew and half staggered to the sanctuary provided by the river. 

“I did tell her to watch out for the duck,” Mary muttered in her own defense as they rushed to help Betty to her feet. 

Penny and Doris took an arm each as Mary reached to retrieve Betty’s handbag. It had landed precariously close to the edge of the river, and the dastardly duck was snuffling at it before Mary seized it and handed it back to Betty. 

“Mary!” cried Betty. “Grab that envelope!” 

Swiveling, Mary saw a large brown envelope and stooped for it before it could fall into the water. “Got it!” she yelled, waving it in the air. Unfortunately, the envelope being upside down, the contents spilled onto the ground around her, luckily missing going into the river. She bent down to pick them up and was surprised to discover they were all newspaper cuttings.  

Buy A Wing and a Prayer on Amazon UK

Buy A Wing and a Prayer on Amazon US

Buy A Wing and a Prayer on Amazon Aus

Buy A Wing and a Prayer on iBooks

Author Bio 

Mick Arnold is a hopeless romantic who spent fifteen years roaming around the world in the pay of HM Queen Elisabeth II in the RAF before putting down roots. This he’s replaced somewhat with his writing, including reviewing books and supporting fellow saga and romance authors in promoting their novels. 

https://www.facebook.com/MWArnoldAuthor

Twitter – mick859

Instagram – mick859

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Filed under Apple Books, Authors, Book bloggers, ebook, Launch, M W Arnold, publication day, readers, reading, research, Sue Moorcroft, Wild Rose Press, Writers, writing

Thanks to ManyBooks.Net for making me their Author of the Day

Isn’t it great when a website asks to feature you? You might already be familiar with ManyBooks.Net not just for their author interviews and other free content but because of their free downloads of out-of-copyright books. They contacted me recently and offered me the opportunity to be interviewed for Author of the Day.

Here’s the feature for you to read. Haven’t they done a great job?

 

manybooks-aod-badge-v1

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Filed under Audio, Authors, Avon Books UK, Blake Friedmann Literary Agency, Book bloggers, ebook, HarperCollins, Paperback, readers, reading, Sue Moorcroft, Summer on a Sunny Island, Summer read, Sunday Times bestseller, Writers, writing

Publication Day for #SummerOnASunnyIsland @AvonBooksUK @BFLAgency

Here it is at last! Publication day has arrived for Summer on a Sunny Island!

subtle pink

My thanks, as ever, to the fab team at Avon Books UK and Blake Friedmann Literary, Flim and TV Agency for their fantastic support.

The idea for Summer on a Sunny Island was sparked by a service kids’ reunion in Malta, where I was brought up for several years. My brothers, my sister-in-law and I managed to convert one lunch into a ten-day holiday so I didn’t see why such a reunion shouldn’t for part of a novel too. It’s about Rosa, who’s supporting her celeb-cook mum Dory in Malta and Zach, who’s looking after his Maltese grandmother’s property. They’ve both left tricky situations behind them in England but, of course, those situations don’t just go away.

I really hope that you enjoy the opportunity to travel to Malta by book, even if you can’t travel in real life during the pandemic. Malta’s a glorious, golden nugget in the blue Mediterranean sea and a part of my heart will always be there.

Thanks to every single blogger who’s signed up to read and review the book. Here’s details of the blog tour for you to follow:

Summer on a Sunny Island Blog Tour Banner

In addition, fab bloggers, including several from Team Sue Moorcroft, are kindly hosting extra posts from me.

Mark West, Strange Tales, 27th April.

Anne Williams, Being Anne, 29th April.

Samantha Smith, Written by S J Smith, 30th April.

Karen Cocking, My Reading Corner, 1st May.

Lucy Catten, Lucy Literati, 2nd May.

Sherry Gloag, Heart of Romance, 3rd May.

If you read Summer on a Sunny Island it would be fantastic if you could pop a review online. Every single one is appreciated.

On the evening of Friday 1st May I’ll be appearing on a screen near you as part of the Avon Book Fest. Bella Osborne, Phillipa Ashley and I will be live at 5.30pm BST and you can send us in your questions using the chat feature. It’s free and you can sign up here.

And no publication day blog post would be complete without buy links – so here they are!

Summer on a Sunny Island on UK Kindle

Summer on a Sunny Island on UK Kobo

Summer on a Sunny Island on UK Apple

Summer on a Sunny Island paperback

Summer on a Sunny Island audio

Summer on a Sunny Island in the US

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Filed under Apple Books, Audio, Authors, Avon Book Fest, Avon Books UK, Blake Friedmann Literary Agency, Book bloggers, ebook, HarperCollins, Juliet Pickering, Launch, Malta., Paperback, publication day, readers, reading, Sue Moorcroft, Summer on a Sunny Island, Summer read, Team Sue Moorcroft, Writers, writing

#AvonBookFest Free virtual event @osborne_bella @PhillipaAshley @SueMoorcroft @AvonBooksUK

FINAL PHILLIPA SUE BELLA AVONBOOKFEST

 

The virtual Avon Book Fest continues with authorly chat between Phillipa Ashley and Bella Osborne, an event for which I’ll be acting as chair, on the screen of your device.

Join us on Friday 1st May, 5.30-6.30 p.m. BST for a conversation about books and writing. Register for this free event here and get ready to type in your questions! We’ll answer as many as we can. Registration ends at 5pm Wednesday 29th April 2020.

The full Avon Book Fest programme can be found here and you can register for any event that takes your fancy.

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Filed under Authors, Avon Book Fest, Avon Books UK, Bella Osborne, ebook, HarperCollins, Literary festival, Phillipa Ashley, readers, reading, research, Speaker, Sue Moorcroft, Writers, writing

Two weeks to publication – and everything looks different

Summer on a Sunny Island will be hitting shelves and devices in two weeks and the promo looks a little different this time. No physical launch party, radio interviews booked by phone and only virtual events. I have to say I’ve had a great time doing these virtual events with Avon Book Fest, MyVLF and Curl Up With Cathy.

I’ve also recorded a piece about Summer on a Sunny Island for Blake Friedmann, the wonderful agency that represents me, to go out to publishers in other countries. That took me nearly all morning, by the time I’d carried my laptop around the house to find the most flattering light, decided what to say, stood some of my books up in the background and applied make-up. The recording took twelve goes and I wish I’d kept the outtakes now! I swore, flapped my hands, pulled faces, groaned and banged my head on the wall.

I’ve also been invited to take part in Facebook Live events for Tamworth Book Club on May 7th at 10.00 am; with Kim Nash on 5th May at 8.00 pm and, hopefully, I’ll be on BBC Radio Northampton on publication day, 30th April about 10.30 am, even if it has to be by telephone rather than whizzing over there to join lovely Bernie Keith in his studio.

People have been so lovely in inviting me to take part in online or radio events! It gives me a glow that so many take #BeKind to heart. Readers have also asked me how they can support me and other authors while we continue to write the books that earn our livings in tricky times and when some people have diminished disposable income. Here are all the ways I can come up with:

If you know you’re going to buy a book, why not preorder it? There’s no added cost to you but it can help with print runs, selling the books into retailers and, very importantly, chart positions. You can preorder Summer on a Sunny Island here:

Summer on a Sunny Island on UK Kindle

Summer on a Sunny Island on Kobo

Summer on a Sunny Island on Apple

Summer on a Sunny Island paperback

Summer on a Sunny Island audio

'Moorcroft is the high priestess of escapist fiction' copy 2

Buy new books. There are often a lot of book bargains about, especially ebooks. If you prefer print, some of the supermarkets are doing great work in keeping books on shelves and keeping open. Independent or High Street book shops and online retailers are doing home delivery.

Use a subscription service. Audible or Kindle Unlimited are just two ways to access books for a monthly fee.

Borrow ebooks and audiobooks remotely at your library. Many libraries have relaxed their rules so you can join remotely now. Luckily for authors, ebooks and audiobooks loans have just been included in the Public Lending Right scheme so they’ll earn a few pence for every loan.

Review the books you read … especially if it’s a good review. (My personal rule is that if I don’t enjoy a book I don’t finish it, ergo I don’t review it. But everyone makes her or his own decision.) Authors appreciate every single review. If you want to read books slightly ahead of release you can even join Netgalley and request books in return for a review. You won’t get everything you request but that’s a book bargain if ever I heard of one!

Sign up to free author newsletters. You can click to sign up to my newsletter here. Get news of releases, offers and events or maybe the occasional competition.

Follow authors on their social channels. Share your love with friends/your book club/ your followers. Here are my social media links.

Facebook profile

Facebook author page

Twitter 

Instagram 

LinkedIn

And follow blog tours! Thanks to all the lovely book bloggers who have joined my blog tour or invited me onto their blogs. As well as the usual reviews, I’ve written special posts for Strange Tales, Lucy Literati, Being Anne, My Reading Corner, Written by S J Smith and the Heart of Romance and will reblog all those posts.

Summer on a Sunny Island Blog Tour Banner

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Filed under Apple Books, Audio, Authors, Avon Book Fest, BBC Radio Northampton, Blake Friedmann Literary Agency, Book bloggers, Cathy Bramley, ebook, Library, MyVLF, Paperback, Preorder, readers, reading, Sue Moorcroft, Summer on a Sunny Island, Summer read, Writers, writing

Why I’m still writing despite Covid-19 #WritingCommunity

IMG_6955I’ve seen quite a few authors talking on social media about whether they should be writing during the current Coronavirus outbreak. Some feel too anxious, because of what’s going on around them; others feel it’s somehow wrong.

Whether I could or should continue writing hadn’t even occurred to me as a choice so these conversations have made me question myself. Am I insensitive? Or do I bury my head in the sand and hope real life will go away?

Maybe one or both, but I don’t think my willingness to plan my summer 2021 novel while I await edits on this year’s winter novel, A Christmas Wish, is due to either of those things.

Writing and reading are my escapes. Owing to external events, I’m actually working harder than usual. My editor and most of her team are working from home to keep producing my books. If I said I couldn’t write I would be letting them down. Missing deadlines would create timetabling issues for us all in the future, as well as endangering a career it has taken decades to build. Writing’s my job. A whole lot of people are working during the Covid-19 crisis. They don’t have other options and I’m not giving myself any either … especially as my editor is an author too and has written 46k in the lockdown alongside her day job. 😊 Some people have been laid off or put on furlough and must think me fortunate to have a job I can continue.

I admit to wondering about how the publishing landscape is changing but I feel that if I write my books then maybe getting them out to readers will fall into place. It would have been much worse if I’d been writing fifty years ago with no ebook or audio to sell, no social media to allow me to talk to the world, no remote ebook or audiobook borrowing from libraries. Also, the paperback supply chain’s still working! Independent booksellers and High Street chains, as well as internet retailers, are selling online for home delivery.

I’m not able to get out to author events but there are virtual substitutes that have the bonus of being free to watch – see my Avon Book Fest event with Fiona Gibson and Lorna Cook HERE or my chat with Cathy Bramley HERE. On Wednesday 15th April at 7pm (London Time) I’ll be on MyVLF with Heidi Swain, Rachel Marks and Hayley Doyle.

subtle pink

Summer on a Sunny Island is available for preorder and will be published in paperback, ebook and audio on the 30th of April 2020. Whatever promo needs to be done, I’ll do it … because? It’s part of my job!

Preorder Summer on a Sunny Island here:

Summer on a Sunny Island on UK Kindle

Summer on a Sunny Island on Kobo

Summer on a Sunny Island on Apple

Summer on a Sunny Island paperback

Summer on a Sunny Island audio

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Apple Books, Audio, Authors, Avon Book Fest, Cathy Bramley, ebook, Fiona Gibson, Hayley Doyle, Heidi Swain, Library, Lorna Cook, MyVLF, Paperback, Preorder, Rachel Marks, readers, reading, Sue Moorcroft, Summer on a Sunny Island, Summer read, Writers, writing

Free event #AvonBookFest 3 April 5.30-6.30 pm BST @LornaCookAuthor @FionaGibson @SueMoorcroft @AvonBooksUK

Avon book fest 3 Apr copy
Friday 3rd April 2020, 5.30-6.30 p.m. BST you can join me, along with Fiona Gibson and Lorna Cook for a virtual author event as part of the Avon Book Fest. Click the link to register for this free event then join us as we chat about books and writing. You’ll be able to ask your own questions and we’ll answer as many as we can. Come along!
Screenshot 2020-04-02 at 21.44.01
I’ll let you know about my other virtual events as soon as dates and times become available.

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Filed under Authors, Avon Books UK, ebook, Fiona Gibson, HarperCollins, Literary festival, Lorna Cook, Paperback, readers, reading, Speaker, Sue Moorcroft, Summer on a Sunny Island, Summer read, Writers, writing