Category Archives: Team Sue Moorcroft
I don’t often invite authors onto my blog but I’ve made an exception for M W Arnold as Mick is a stalwart member of my street team, Team Sue Moorcroft. You might also see the same interview on Rachel’s Random Reads to make the most of our respective audiences.
The Season for Love – blurb
Believing she was responsible for the death of her husband, Chrissie Stewart retreats from all those who love her. A chance meeting with a mysterious stranger, single-parent Josh Morgan and his bewitching young daughter Lizzy, breathes new life into her and gradually, she feels able to start to let go of the memory of her lost love. Unexpected links are revealed between the two families that strengthen the growing bonds she feels to this man and with the encouragement of her best friend Annie, herself hiding a hidden conflict from Chrissie, she battles with her demons to believe in her ability to trust and love again. Everything comes to a head on Christmas Day; which all goes to show that this is truly The Season for Love.
Bio – Mick is a hopeless romantic who was born in England, and spent fifteen years roaming around the world in the pay of HM Queen Elizabeth II in the Royal Air Force, before putting down roots, and realising how much he missed the travel. This, he’s replaced somewhat with his writing, including reviewing books and writing a regular post at the www.NovelKicks.co.uk blog site.
He’s the proud keeper of a cat bent on world domination, is mad on the music of the Beach Boys and enjoys the theatre and humouring his Manchester United supporting wife. Finally, and most importantly, Mick’s a member of the Romantic Novelists Association, with the forthcoming publication of his debut novel The Season for Love.
Twitter – https://twitter.com/mick859
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/MWArnoldAuthor/
I thought I was excited enough when the lovely folk at Avon told me to expect The Little Village Christmas to reach #7 in the Sunday Times Fiction Paperbacks chart today. Then I bought the paper this morning – and found it at #6!
I officially became a Sunday Times bestselling author last week when The Little Village Christmas popped up at #17 but to reach the top ten makes me feel more relaxed about claiming the title ‘Sunday Times bestselling author’. It’s something I’ve coveted for so long without ever really expecting it to apply to me.
After all, it’s been a while coming. Over more than 21 years 150+ of my short stories have been published, along with 250+ columns or articles, three courses, six serials, a writing guide, and a novella. I’ve judged 120+ writing competitions, appraised dozens of manuscripts and led a host of writing courses and workshops. And The Little Village Christmas is my twelfth novel.
So, when I treated myself to these frivolous but beautiful boots yesterday I was celebrating every one of those steps along the road to seeing my name and the title of my book in the Sunday Times today.
My thanks go to every editor who has chosen my work over the years, the whole wonderful Avon team, my amazing agent Juliet Pickering, the writer of every good review and each member of my fantastic street team.
Most of all, thanks to my lovely readers, who made this joyous celebration possible by buying my books. Thank you.
It’s 21 years since I sold my first short story and 13 since I sold (or my then-agent sold) my first novel but I’m still surprised – even shocked – by certain aspects of being an author. I thought I’d share some with you.
- Fresh ideas can be hard to come by, not because too many people have written about them before – but because I have!
- Likewise, character names. (If anyone ever wants to gather all my character names together in one document, please do let me know. I can help you achieve that ambition.)
- People asking for my help. I’m afraid I have to disappoint a lot of people over this one. Please see ‘Time Pressure’ below.
- People asking for charitable donations. I’m so sorry I can’t fulfil all of these requests. I try to give time as a speaker when I can but I’ve stopped donating signed books because over one-third of the donation goes straight to the Royal Mail in postage.
- Time pressure. Writing to an agreed schedule is different to writing if and when I feel like it.
- People telling me what I meant when I wrote something. It’s always interesting to hear these interpretations and compare them with my own thoughts on the subject. Sometimes I wish I had meant whatever it’s thought I meant because it makes me look brainier or more insightful than I am.
- Lovely messages on social media. These are such a privilege. Seriously. They make my heart dance and sing.
- People waiting for my next book. (Cue dancing, singing heart again.)
- Being in magazines – just me, not even my books.
- Needing patience when it comes to contracts and similar transactions. (Patience never has been my best thing.)
- My characters getting fan mail of their own. (Isn’t that awesome?)
- Occasionally needing a skin like a rhinoceros and a back like a duck. (You’re trying to draw this in your mind now, aren’t you?)
- It being perfectly legitimate to spend working hours perusing magazines or watching TV for ideas or research. Ditto travel to other countries.
- People actively wanting to help with research.
- Team Sue Moorcroft, my street team, even existing. (You can read about – and even join – the street team here.)
- Being taken out to lunch or sent gifts.
- Being asked to talk about myself. Really. And even getting paid for it.
- Being asked to read other authors’ books and supply a quote. I can’t do all of these either, for a wide variety of reasons, but it’s lovely all the same and it makes me feel better about giving to my publisher the names of other authors who might quote for my books.
- People wanting to receive my newsletter or share my posts.
- Being able to go to parties, lunches, talks and conferences in the names of education and networking.
- Being able to set my travel to/from events and cost of tickets and other relevant costs against tax.
- Thinking of a lot of ideas for blog posts around the publication of a book.
- The rush of excitement that accompanies publication.
- The heady disbelief when a book surpasses my wildest dreams (like The Christmas Promise getting to #1. The Little Village Christmas and A Christmas Gift becoming Sunday Times bestsellers. Just for the Holidays being nominated for a Romantic Novel of the Year Award. Sorry. I try and introduce these facts to conversations whenever remotely possible.)
- And receiving copies of my books, seeing the cover art and marketing plans.
- People thinking they see themselves in my characters. I try never to let this happen but maybe it’s unconscious?
- People saying they know where Middledip is. It’s on a big piece of paper in my study and that’s it, I’m afraid.
- Doing exciting research. (Helicopters, travel abroad, meeting interesting people.)
- Emails often being exciting.
- People reading my blog.
If I’ve missed out anything you have on your list, please add it in the comments!
The Christmas Promise hit the UK Kindle #1 spot!
Somebody once told me that being an author meant drinking champagne with your publishers one day and cleaning black gunge out of your washing machine next.
I had my own taste of that this week with my launch party on Thursday and housework today!
Let’s focus on the fun stuff. Thursday’s launch party for The Christmas Promise was amazing. I’m going to use this post mainly to share photos with you.
I was amazed and thrilled how many people turned up to support me, buying ALL the books in stock and leaving orders with the store for more. Members of Team Sue Moorcroft, bloggers, readers, family, and friends from as far back as my primary school. Authors, mainly from the RNA, came out in force.
Ava from The Christmas Promise is a milliner and Abigail Crampton, who had made the millinery research very easy for me, made my beautiful cocktail hat especially for the evening. Here we go with the pics!
And for those who are interested in how I cleaned the black gunge from the washing machine, I chose a steam cleaner and and an old toothbrush.
Yesterday, I had the absolute pleasure and privilege of meeting up with several members of Team Sue Moorcroft for the first celebration of The Christmas Promise. Obviously, as it was Christmas (in May), gifts were called for! So I stowed them carefully (ie squashed them in a bag) and set off by train for Leicester.
I’d had surgery on my shoulder eleven days earlier so I travelled in my shoulder brace, in a pre-booked seat and wearing an alarmed expression. A guy opposite asked what I’d done and as I’m tired of the boringly real explanation of bone spurs cutting into a tendon, I told him I’d done it cage fighting. He assumed an alarmed expression, too.
It’s a constant source of wonder and pride that I have readers who like my work so much that they want to be in my street team, that anyone (Louise Styles! It was you!) ever suggested I should have one, and that the members happily spread the word about my books whenever they can. (If you’d like to know more about the street team and how to get involved you can read this page on my website.)
We met at the Belmont Hotel in Leicester for a lovely lunch (the kind that lasts all afternoon). It’s been pointed out to me that maybe we ought to have talked a leetle bit more about The Christmas Promise (which is available for preorder already). What we did talk about was books in general, mine in particular, writing, the mating habits of dogs, whether cats would rule the world if they had opposable thumbs, Team Sue Moorcroft, how far each person had travelled, whether Kay would catch her bus home (JUST, thanks to Louise who drove her to the bus station), gout, alcohol (hardly any of us were drinking owing to various issues – in my case painkillers), children, events on the literary calendar, the Beautiful South and the lyrics of their songs, the amazingness of food (particularly chocolate fondant), angels, religion, the pre-publication launch of The Christmas Promise at Waterstones Nottingham (20th October, hopefully), blogging, books as gifts and probably a lot I don’t now remember.
I would like to thank Manda, Ann, Louise P, Kay, Judy and Anne for their company and their support, for making me laugh and their input on future events. Sorry to other members of the team who wanted to come but couldn’t make the date because of birthdays, anniversaries, illness or interviews, and I hope you can come to the next one.