I'm delighted to welcome author Rachel Brimble. Let's learn more about her latest book Victoria and Violet, the first book in her new Royal Maids series, and get to know her a bit better.
1) What sort of books did you enjoy reading as a child? Did you have a favorite book or series?
My absolute favourite author as a child was Enid Blyton and it was her Secret Seven series that inspired me to write. As I grew into my pre-teens and early teens, I devoured anything by Judy Blume and as many of the Sweet Dreams romances as I could find!
2) What sort of books do you enjoy reading nowadays?
I read so many different genres – almost everything except for Sci-fi and horror. My favourite genres are romance, romantic suspense, crime and biographies…especially of past British royalty.
3) Around what age did you realize that you liked to write? And when did you know that you wanted to write books?
See question 1, haha! I was around eight or nine when I started writing short stories and binding them with ribbon. Unfortunately, I didn’t keep any of them – I would love to have read them now! I wrote on and off, but never wrote seriously toward publication until my youngest daughter started school full-time. My first novel was published in 2007 and I’ve had a least one novel published per year ever since.
4) What’s the first thing you wrote that you remember being proud of?
It was when I won my first short story competition – it was online and I came first. After that, it was my first book contract and then when I secured a multiple-book deal with Harlequin – that was a big day in my career!
5) You have an amazing website. Please tell us about what drives you and about the creative force within you. What inspires you to write, to create?
Writing is a huge part of who I am and has been for many years – it is no longer a case of me choosing to write, rather that I am compelled to do it. I genuinely need to work, or I become agitated and grumpy. Ask my family! I can usually manage about 3 days without writing before my mood changes…which is why my laptop always comes on holiday with me!
6) What’s your writing space like?
I am lucky enough to have my own home office these days – I started off on the kitchen table, but about five years ago I commandeered our spare bedroom for my office space. It is my haven and I love it. I have corkboards in front of me which are filled with visuals from my works in progress, a beautiful big white desk and three floor to ceiling bookshelves overflowing with research books and novels. My window looks down onto our back garden.
Your office sounds dreamy!
7) Do you have a favorite time of day to write? Any habits or little rituals that put you in a writing mindset?
I suppose my favourite time of the day to actually write is late morning onwards – I am always at my desk by 8.30am but the first two hours are taken up with emails/creating social media content/completing interviews or writing blogs. I then walk our Labrador, Tyler. Once I’m back at my desk, the rest of the day is for writing. I try to finish my work day around 5.30pm.
8) Congratulations on Victoria and Violet. Won’t you tell us about a little about the book and also the series?
Victoria & Violet is the first book in my new Royal Maids series – it is set in the court of a young Queen Victoria and revolves around her relationship with her housemaid, Violet. As they get to know one another, they become confidantes and allies against their overbearing mothers. However, the main event of the novel is the burgeoning romance between Violet and handsome courtier, James Greene…
I plan for each book in the series to be set in the court of the succeeding monarch – so book 2 will be Edward VII’s court, book 3 George V’s and so on with a royal maid to the reigning queen consort being the focus of the romance.
It all sounds absolutely wonderful!
9) I comprehend that you only recently published your latest book. Still, I can’t help but ask – do you have another story waiting in the wings?
Indeed I do! In fact, I have just submitted book 2 in the Royal Maids series to my editor so watch this space! In addition to that, I am working on a new contemporary romance series idea and starting the research for the next Royal Maids book.
10) Is there anything else you’d like to share with us?
Yes! I would love to tell you and your readers about my First Chapter Critique service – this is my way of helping new and aspiring writers in the careers as so many published writers helped me. If any of your visitors would love to write a romance or women’s fiction novel, I’d love to help! Here’s the link for all the details:
Rachel, thank you again for sharing your time and talent. Wishing you all the best!
It should be a dream come true to serve the Queen of England…
When Violet Parker is told she will be Queen Victoria’s personal housemaid, she cannot believe her good fortune. She finally has the chance to escape her overbearing mother, a servant to the Duchess of Kent.
Violet hopes to explore who she is and what the world has to offer without her mother’s schemes overshadowing her every thought and action.
Then she meets James Greene, assistant to the queen’s chief political adviser, Lord Melbourne. From entirely different backgrounds and social class, Violet and James should have neither need nor desire to speak to one another, yet through their service, their paths cross and their lives merge—as do their feelings.
Only Victoria’s court is not always the place for romance, but rather secrets, scandals, and conspiracies…
About the Author
Rachel lives in a small town near Bath, England. She is the author of 29 novels including the Ladies of Carson Street trilogy, the Shop Girl series (Aria Fiction) and the Templeton Cove Stories (Harlequin). Her latest novel, Victoria & Violet is the first book in her new Royal Maids series with the Wild Rose Press and released 17th October 2022.
Rachel is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association as well as the Historical Novel Society and has thousands of social media followers all over the world.
To sign up for her newsletter (a guaranteed giveaway every month!), click here: https://bit.ly/3zyH7dt
I agree, Kim. It’s sad the earliest works were lost, but it’s a very sweet memory.
Thanks so much for hosting me, Anastasia! X
Loved the interview, ladies. Rachel, I wish I had such a structured writing day as yours. My compliments!! The new series sounds great. all the best with it and with this first book in in.
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