Arrgh! For some reason my guest Trish arrived a day early and since I couldn't get on the internet all day I was unable to put in my welcome message!
I first met Trish at an AMBA lunch -- a shy young thing from Ireland, with barely a word to say for herself. Since then she's become the life and soul of the party and pretty much the voice of romance in this celebration year for Mills & Boon and I'm absolutely delighted that she's agreed to come and play here for a few days in my own big year.
Over to you, Trish. Give us the craic...
HUGE CONGRATS on the fifty books Liz! And thanks for inviting me over to sip a glass of bubbly with you! If we have a few I might even join you on the Wii Fit. Just remind me to get off it before the champagne acts as a painkiller and I can’t feel what I’m doing until I wake up in the morning and have difficulty with the basics like… walking…
Yes. That is the voice of experience.
But seriously. The very thought of fifty books makes me want to curl up in a ball in a corner and whimper. Possibly with cake. I haven’t even hit twenty books yet and already I find myself wading through treacle at least twice a year… Any secrets you’d like to pass on to those prepared to pay in cake? Would pleading help?!
I first met Liz after an AMBA lunch a few years back. She had her lovely hubby with her and I was fortunate enough to be sat with them at supper that evening. They made me feel very welcome and totally at ease and lemme tell ya – considering how nervous I was that day it was MORE than appreciated. Thank you Liz and lovely hubby!
When it comes to writing I think our Liz is a bit of a trail blazer. Without her and the ‘rules’ she’s broken with many of those fifty books, new writers like me wouldn’t get to play ‘outside the box’ the way we do. And for that we all owe Liz cake! One of my absolute favourites was of course Mattie in The Marriage Miracle, the book several competition judges agreed with me on ;) And thanks to Liz and Mattie I had the courage to tackle Ronan in The Millionaire’s Proposal…
The Millionaire’s Proposal is the Autumn Bride in the Bride For All Seasons mini-series the lovely Liz started back in April with our Spring Bride ‘The Bride’s Baby’. It’s a round-the-world romp of a story I had a blast writing and one that has pretty much ruined me for Romance heroes ever since. Tips for overcoming that one Liz? Huh? Huh?
* * *
Of all the cities in the world, he chose Paris to propose!
Ronan O'Keefe has everything money can buy. He'd give it all up in an instant to keep the one thing he's losing. The jet-setting playboy is slowly being robbed of his sight.
Alone in New York, Kerry Doyle isn't feeling quite so brave about her trip around the world. Luckily, a millionaire has come to her rescue...
By the time they get to Paris, Ronan doesn't want to let beautiful, bubbly Kerry go. His secret is casting its shadow, but Kerry has lit up his life...
Kerry giggled, her eyes widening in surprise at the sound before she set her glass firmly away from her. That was quite enough of that stuff then.
“The suspense is killing me. So spill it.”
“Three days in the States and she’s already picking up the lingo.”
When she threw a warning glare his way he smiled lazily, leaning forward to rest his elbows on the table, long fingers playing with the cutlery he hadn’t used while he studied her face. And under the influence of the sense numbing wine it took a moment for her brain to kick in with a possible motive for his stalling,
“Whatever it is you’re not entirely convinced it’s that good an idea, are you?”
Ronan’s brows jerked, “And how exactly would you know that?”
Kerry waved a limp hand back and forth in front of her, “Female intuition. We’re born with it.”
He nodded at the table, “How many glasses of that have we had young lady?”
“Not enough to lose my ability to think. So if you don’t think it’s that good an idea why are you about to suggest it?”
His chest rose and fell, “Good question.”
“Well don’t suggest it then, if you’re so unconvinced,” She reached for her glass, hiding her nose in it and her eyes from his intense gaze while she swallowed her sudden sense of disappointment with another mouthful of rich liquid.
“I want to suggest it even more now you’ve said that – if it was a go at reverse psychology then bravo…”
Kerry pursed her lips at the tinge of sarcasm, nodding firmly while focussing her attention on swirling what was left in her glass round and round in circles, “It wasn’t. But if that’s how you feel then you definitely should suggest it. Go with your gut, shoot from the hip, live life without regrets, fortune favours the -”
She had dozens of these. But Ronan caught her attention by waving his arm at a waiter, smiling while he raised his voice to be heard above the background noise, “Tiramisu and two coffees please - the lady will have hers black.”
Kerry scowled at him.
And he chuckled throatily in reply, eyes still twinkling with amusement when he then leaned over the table, lifting a hand to beckon her with the same forefinger he’d waggled earlier, “Come here crazy girl.”
With a very deep breath Kerry fought the urge to be petulant and leaned forwards, setting her glass down on the white tablecloth and resting her elbows the same way Ronan had. Then she simply quirked her brows in silent question, and waited.
He examined her eyes for the longest time, as if sizing her up before he made his decision, “What age are you Kerry, Kerry Doyle?”
What did that have to do with anything?
“Why? Do you want to add old to drunk and crazy?”
“No – and I don’t think you’re drunk; just slightly sozzled. You’re obviously not much of a drinker,” He smiled a smile that warmed her inside more than the wine had, his voice dropping seductively, “but I’m sticking with crazy.”
Actually she was nearly as okay with that as she’d been with him thinking she was beautiful. Crazy was much more interesting than the sensible or practical or reliable tags normally associated with her name.
“Why do you need to know what age I am?”
His eyes narrowed an almost imperceptible amount, the gaze so intense she could feel her toes curling, “You’re currently a bit of a conundrum that’s why…”
Her eyes widened in surprise, “I am?”
Kerry sighed dramatically, mumbling beneath her breath, “Thirty-six.”
“Didn’t quite catch that.”
So she reluctantly raised her voice, “Thirty-six okay? Now tell me why you needed to know so badly you broke the ‘never ask a lady her age’ rule.”
“Right up there with the dessert rule is it?”
Amusement shone in his eyes, even while he shook his head, “You don’t look thirty-six.”
“Thanks. I think. Now what does my age have to do with your proposition?” On top of the effects of half a glass of wine too many her head was starting to ache attempting to figure him out. So if blunt was what it was going to take…
The nod was barely perceptible, but enough when accompanied with another intense gaze for her to know that whatever doubt he’d had about what he was going to suggest was now gone,
“I’ve had an idea for a new book. And I want to hire you to help me research it – with mutually beneficial perks along the way.”
“Mutually beneficial how exactly?”
“That we’ll discuss over coffee…”
In The Millionaire’s Proposal Ronan makes it his personal goal to fulfil as many of Kerry’s fantasies from her Travel Wish-List as possible…So my question for you would be what destinations would be on your fantasy Wish-List and why? The winner will be drawn at random and will win a signed copy of The Millionaire’s Proposal.
To find out more about the book and to read some reviews you can visit Trish’s Website. And of course don’t forget we have our lovely A Bride For All Seasons Blog with excerpts, covers, author info and seasonal wedding info all in the one place… worth it for the pics alone!
Congratulations again Liz! I hope you have the most fantabulous rest-of-the-year and that the next fifty books slide smoothly and painlessly off your fingertips!