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Archive for March, 2015

Today we have an author interview from my latest work, Beaux Ballrooms and Battles anthology.

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It will be available digitally for $.99 and then after a short period of time sell for the regular price of $4.99

The Trade Paperback version will sell for $12.99

My story in the anthology is entitled: Not a Close Run Thing at All, which of course is a play on the famous misquote attributed to Arthur Wellesley, “a damn close-run thing” which really was “It has been a damned nice thing — the nearest run thing you ever saw in your life.”

Today we are fortunate to have with us Susana Ellis who writes in the Regency romance genre.

1)What moved you to become an author?

Being a reader, mostly. And being curious as to how people lived in the past. I learned a lot about history from reading Jean Plaidy books in high school, and became hooked on the Regency from reading Georgette Heyer. You might say I enjoy learning history from reading historical fiction rather than memorizing dates and facts. I guess it’s really the people that interest me.

2) How did you find out about the Waterloo project?

Well, I got the idea when our local RWA group speaker spoke about how doing anthologies and having 8-10 people all working together to promote the project is a great way to find new readers. Almost at the same time, I realized that the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo would be coming in 2015, and since the Napoleonic War is constantly referred to in Regency romances, it seemed like the perfect theme. After all, the bicentenary will only happen once!

3) Can you tell us some of the things that attracted you to writing a piece on the anniversary of this famous battle?

Well, as a former French teacher, I talked rather a lot about the historical sites of Paris, and Napoleon as always fascinated me. Now that I’m writing Regency romance, I get to look at it from the other side. The war is a backdrop in nearly every Regency romance, and I enjoyed learning more about it—especially the people fighting it—from reading Bernard Cornwell’s Waterloo PastedGraphic2-2015-03-31-08-00.png and Georgette Heyer’s An Infamous Army PastedGraphic3-2015-03-31-08-00.png and The Spanish Bride PastedGraphic5-2015-03-31-08-00.png.

4) Tell us about your current story in the anthology.

Lost and Found Lady spans a period of 22 years, from when my heroine was born during Napoleon’s rise to power to the Battle of Salamanca in 1812, when she meets the hero and falls in love, only to be separated, and finally at the Battle of Waterloo, where they meet again under very different circumstances.

5) How did the story begin to develop in your mind?

The idea was for my protagonists to meet in Spain prior to Waterloo, become separated, and then reconcile in Belgium. Of course, I had to come up with reasons for them to be in Spain, and the rest developed from there. FYI: I was also a Spanish teacher and had studied in Santiago de Compostela and traveled widely throughout the country, which is why it seemed a natural setting for the story.

6) What did you find most challenging about this story?

Well, I didn’t know that much about it at first, which is why I started early on reading Cornwell and Heyer. My stories are fictional, but I do want them to seem realistic from a historical standpoint. I discovered reading about soldiers and how they lived was extremely enjoyable, and I’m especially fascinated with the true story of Brigade-Major Harry Smith and how he came to marry his own Spanish bride, Juana Smith, who traipsed around Spain with him through the end of the war and also in his further career.

7) Tell us a little about yourself.

I live in Toledo, Ohio during the year and central Florida in the summer, where I assist my elderly parents. I lived in Ecuador for three years and traveled a great deal in Spain, France, Mexico, and parts of Central and South America. Now I’m focused on Britain, and hope to travel there every year to visit as many historical sites as I can find time for.

8) What is your next work, and beyond that, what do you want to work on?

I am currently revising a time travel novel about a young woman who discovers she was abducted to the 21st century from the Regency period and travels back to find out the truth about her origins. I also plan to release a prequel to the story featuring my time-traveling blog character, Lady Pendleton, who also has a role in the novel. These two: probably toward the end of the year. I have a couple other projects that may come out sooner than that.

9) In the Waterloo story, is there an excerpt to share? Your favorite scene, a part of your life that you put into the work and think it came out exceptionally well that you would like to share.

“I don’t like the look of those clouds, monsieur,” Tobias McIntosh said in fluent French to the gray-bearded old man in a sailor hat waiting impatiently near the rowboat that was beginning to bob more sharply with each swell of the waves. “Are you sure your vessel can make it safely all the way to Newhaven in these choppy seas?”
The old man waved a hand over the horizon. “La tempête, it is not a threat, if we leave immédiatement. Plus tard…” He shrugged. “Je ne sais pas.”
“Please, mon amour,” pleaded the small woman wrapped in a hooded gray cloak standing at his side. “Allow me to stay with you. I don’t want to go to England. I promise I will be prudent.”
A strong gust of wind caught her hood and forced it down, revealing her mop of shiny dark locks. Tobias felt like seizing her hand and pulling her away from the ominous waves to a place of safety where she and their unborn child could stay until the senseless Terreur was over.
“Justine, ma chère, we have discussed this endlessly. There is no place in France safe enough for you if your identity as the daughter of the Comte d’Audet is discovered.” He shivered. “I could not bear it if you were to suffer the same fate at the hands of the revolutionaries as your parents did when I failed to save them.”
She threw her arms around him, the top of her head barely reaching his chin. “Non, mon amour, it was not your fault. You could not have saved them. It was miraculeux that you saved me. I should have died with them.”
She looked up to catch his gaze, her face ashen. “Instead, we met and have had three merveilleux months together. If it is my time to die, I wish to die at your side.”
Tobias felt like his heart was going to break. His very soul demanded that the two of them remain together and yet… there was a price on both their heads, and the family of the Vicomte Lefebre was waiting for him in Amiens, the revolutionaries expected to reach them before midday. It was a dangerous work he was involved in—rescuing imperiled French nobility from bloodthirsty, vengeful mobs—but he had pledged himself to the cause and honor demanded that he carry on. And besides, there was now someone else to consider.
“The child,” he said with more firmness than he felt. “We have our child to consider, now, Justine ma chère. The next Earl of Dumfries. He must live to grow up and make his way in the world.”
Not to mention the fact that Tobias was human enough to wish to leave a child to mark his legacy in the world—his and Justine’s. He felt a heaviness in his heart that he might not live long enough to know this child he and Justine had created together. He could not allow his personal wishes to undermine his conviction. Justine and the child must survive.
Justine’s blue eyes filled with tears. “But I cannot! I will die without you, mon cher mari. You cannot ask it of me!”
“Justine,” he said, pushing away from her to clasp her shoulders and look her directly in the eye. “You are a brave woman, the strongest I have ever known. You have survived many hardships and you can survive this. Take this letter to my brother in London, and he will see to your safety until the time comes that I can join you. My comrades in Newhaven will see that you are properly escorted.”
He handed over a letter and a bag of coins. “This should be enough to get you to London.”
After she had reluctantly accepted and pocketed the items beneath her cloak, he squeezed her hands.
“Be sure to eat well, ma chère. You are so thin and my son must be born healthy.”
She gave him a feigned smile. “Our daughter is the one responsible for my sickness in the mornings… I do not believe she wishes me to even look at food.”
She looked apprehensively at the increasingly angry waves as they tossed the small boat moored rather loosely to a rock on the shore and her hands impulsively went to her stomach.
“Make haste, monsieur,” the old sailor called as he peered anxiously at the darkening clouds. “We must depart now if we are to escape the storm. Bid your chère-amie adieu maintenant or wait for another day. I must return to the bateau.”
“Tobias,” she said, her voice shaking.
He wondered if he would ever again hear her say his name with that adorable French inflection that had drawn him from their first meeting.
“Go, Justine. Go to my family and keep our child safe. I promise I will join you soon.”
He scooped her up in his arms and carried her toward the dinghy, trying to ignore her tears. The old sailor held the boat as still as he could while Tobias placed her on the seat and kissed her hard before striding back to the shore, each footstep heavier than the last.
He studied the darkening sky as the sailor climbed in the boat. “You are sure it is safe?”
“La Chasseresse, she is très robuste. A few waves will not topple her, monsieur.”
“Je t’aime, mon amour,” she said to him plaintively, her chin trembling.
“Au revoir, ma chère,” he said, trying to smile, although his vision was blurring from tears.
Will I ever see her again?
He stood watching as the dinghy made its way slowly through the choppy sea to the larger ship anchored in the distance, grief-stricken and unable to concentrate on anything but his pain. When the ship finally sailed off into the horizon, he fell to his knees and prayed as he had never done before for the safety of his beloved. He remained in that position until drops of rain on his face reminded him of the Lefebre family waiting for him in Amiens.
With a deep breath, he rose and made his way to the nearby forest, where his horse waited, tied to a tree.
“Come, my friend. We have a long, wet journey ahead of us.”
Setting foot in the stirrup, he swung his leg over the saddle and urged the horse to a gallop, feeling his heart rip into pieces with every step away from his beloved.

10) Who do you think influenced your writing?

Georgette Heyer, of course. Katherine E. Woodiwiss, Mary Balogh, Joan Smith, Jane Ashford, Allison Lane, Vanessa Kelly…pretty much all the Signet and Zebra Regency authors. And the newer ones too. I just wish I had more time for reading these days!

11) When writing, what is your routine?

I’m a morning writer. The earlier the better. I write slowly, but my first draft is pretty well polished.

12) Do you think of yourself as an artist, or as a craftsman, a blend of both?

A lover of stories. The best reward for me is to hear that others enjoy them as much as I do.

13) Where should we look for your work.

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There is Susana’s website: http://www.susanaellis.com

Facebook has a whole page dedicated to Susana https://www.facebook.com/susana.ellis.5

Twitter, look for Susana’s Tweets at https://twitter.com/susanaauthor

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Regency Personalities Series
In my attempts to provide us with the details of the Regency, today I continue with one of the many period notables.

General Sir Charles Colville
7 August 1770 – 27 March 1843

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Charles Colville

General Sir Charles Colville was a British Army officer who served during the Napoleonic Wars. He was an ensign in 1781. He served in the West Indies from 1791 to 1797 and while serving there was promoted to lieutenant-colonel (1796). He helped to suppress the Irish rebellion of 1798. He was in Egypt in 1801 and fought against Martinique in 1809. He commanded brigade, and afterwards division, in the Peninsula War from 1810 until 1814. During the Waterloo Campaign of 1815 he commanded a division in Belgium and the same year was awarded a K.C.B.. In 1819 he was promoted to lieutenant-general and served as commander-in-chief at Bombay from 1819 until 1825. He was governor of Mauritius from 1828 until 1834. He was promoted to general in 1837.

Charles Colville was the second son of John Colville, 8th Lord Colville of Culross in the peerage of Scotland, was born on 7 Aug. 1770.

Colville entered the army as an ensign in the 28th regiment on 26 December 1781, but did not join until 1787, in which year he was promoted lieutenant. In May 1791 he was promoted captain into the 13th Somersetshire light infantry, with which regiment he remained for nineteen years, until he became a major-general. He joined it in December 1791 in the West Indies, and remained with it until its return to England in 1797, seeing much service in the interval, especially in San Domingo, and being promoted major 1 September 1795 and lieutenant-colonel 26 August 1796.

Colville then commanded the 13th in the suppression of the Irish insurrection of 1798, and in the expedition to Ferrol and to Egypt in 1800 and 1801. In Egypt his regiment formed part of Major-general Cradock’s brigade, and distinguished itself in the battles of 8, 13, and 21 March, and in the investment of Alexandria.
On leaving Egypt, Colville, who had there established his reputation as a good regimental officer, took his regiment to Gibraltar, where he remained until 1805, in which year he was promoted to colonel. After a short period in England he went with his regiment to Bermuda in 1808, and in 1809 he was made a brigadier-general and commanded the 2nd brigade of Prevost’s division in the capture of Martinique in that year.

On 25 July 1810 Colville was promoted major-general and at once applied for a command in the Peninsula. In October 1810 he took over the command of the 1st brigade of the 3rd division, which was under the command of Thomas Picton. It was now that he had his great opportunity, and he soon became not only Picton’s trusted lieutenant, but one of Wellington’s favourite brigadiers. He commanded his brigade in the pursuit after Massena, and in the Battle of Fuentes de Onoro, shared the superintendence of the trenches with Major-general Hamilton at the second siege of Badajoz, commanded the infantry in the affair at El Bodon on 25 September 1811, and the 4th division in the place of Major-general Cole in the successful siege of Ciudad Rodrigo. He shared the superintendence of the trenches in the third and last siege of Badajoz with Generals Bowes and Kempt, and commanded the 4th division in the storming of the Trinidad bastion, where he was shot through the left thigh and lost a finger of his right hand.

Colville had to go to England for his cure, and thus missed the battle of Salamanca, but returned to the Peninsula in October 1812 and commanded the 3rd division in winter quarters until superseded by the arrival of General Picton. He commanded his brigade only at the battle of Vittoria, where he was slightly wounded, but was specially appointed by Lord Wellington to the temporary command of the 6th division from August to November 1813, when he reverted to the 3rd division, which he commanded at the battles of the Nivelle and the Nive. He was again superseded by the arrival of Sir Thomas Picton, but in February 1814 Lord Wellington appointed him permanently to the 5th division in the place, of Sir James Leith. With it he served under Sir John Hope in the siege of Bayonne, and it was Colville who superintended the final embarkation at Passages of the last English troops left in France.

Colville’s services were well rewarded; he received a cross with one clasp; he was made a K.C.B. in January and a G.C.B. in March 1815; he was appointed colonel of the 94th regiment in April 1815; and when the return of Napoleon from Elba made it necessary for a British army to be sent to the continent, he was made a local lieutenant-general in the Netherlands at Wellington’s special request, and took command of the 4th division there. Colville’s division was posted on the extreme right of the British division at Halle during the Battle of Waterloo. To compensate him for not being more actively engaged there, Wellington gave him the duty of storming Cambrai, the only French fortress which did not immediately surrender. He succeeded with the loss of only thirty men killed and wounded.

Colville did not again see active service. He was promoted lieutenant-general in 1819, and was commander-in-chief of the Bombay Army from 1819 to 1825. From 17 June 1828 to 3 February 1833, Colville was 3rd Governor of Mauritius when the population of 100,000 (two thirds in slavery) were in semi revolt against the crown. In 1829 he described the mentalité esclavagiste of the island’s inhabitants, who were extremely hostile to any reforms of slaves’ working conditions. In 1830 he reported that there was “a great deal of bad feeling against His Majesty’s Government continues to prevail and shew itself here… there is an almost total cessation in the payment of taxes…”

Colville was promoted to general on 10 January 1837, and died on 27 March 1843 at Rosslyn House, Hampstead.

In 1818 Colville married Jane, eldest daughter of William Mure of Caldwell, and his eldest son succeeded as 11th Lord Colville of Culross.

And Coming on April 1st, 2015

Beaux Ballrooms and Battles anthology, celebrating the 200th anniversary of the victory at Waterloo in story.

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Looks good, huh? The talented writer and digital artist, Aileen Fish created this.

It will be available digitally for $.99 and then after a short period of time sell for the regular price of $4.99

The Trade Paperback version will sell for $12.99

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My story in the anthology is entitled: Not a Close Run Thing at All, which of course is a play on the famous misquote attributed to Arthur Wellesley, “a damn close-run thing” which really was “It has been a damned nice thing — the nearest run thing you ever saw in your life.”

Samantha, Lady Worcester had thought love was over for her, much like the war should have been. The Bastille had fallen shortly after she had been born. Her entire life the French and their Revolution had affected her and all whom she knew. Even to having determined who she married, though her husband now had been dead and buried these eight years.

Yet now Robert Barnes, a major-general in command of one of Wellington’s brigades, had appeared before her, years since he had been forgotten and dismissed. The man she had once loved, but because he had only been a captain with no fortune, her father had shown him the door.

With a battle at hand, she could not let down the defenses that surrounded her heart. Could she?

As her father’s hostess, she had travelled with him to Brussels where he served with the British delegation. Duty had taken her that night to the Duchess of Richmond’s ball. The last man she ever expected to see was Robert, who as a young captain of few prospects, had offered for her, only to be turned out by her father so that she could make an alliance with a much older, and better positioned (wealthy), aristocrat.Now, their forces were sure to engage Napoleon and the resurgent Grande Armée. Meeting Robert again just before he was to be pulled into such a horrific maelstrom surely was Fate’s cruelest trick ever. A fate her heart could not possibly withstand.

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We’ll All Go A Trolling Not only do I write Regency and Romance, but I also have delved into Fantasy.

The Trolling series is the story of a man, Humphrey. We meet him as he has left youth and become a man with a man’s responsibilities.

We follow him in a series of stories that encompass the stages of life. We see him when he starts his family, when he has older sons and the father son dynamic is tested.

We see him when his children begin to marry and have children, and at the end of his life when those he has loved, and those who were his friends proceed him over the threshold into death.

All this while he serves a kingdom troubled by monsters. Troubles that he and his friends will learn to deal with and rectify. It is now available in a variety of formats.

For $2.99 you can get this fantasy adventure.

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Barnes and Noble for your Nook

Smashwords

Amazon for your Kindle

King Humphrey, retired, has his 80th birthday approaching. An event that he is not looking forward to.

A milestone, of course, but he has found traveling to Torc, the capital of the Valley Kingdom of Torahn, a trial. He enjoys his life in the country, far enough from the center of power where his son Daniel now is King and rules.

Peaceful days sitting on the porch. Reading, writing, passing the time with his guardsmen, his wife, and the visits of his grandson who has moved into a manor very near.

Why go to Torc where he was to be honored, but would certainly have a fight with his son, the current king. The two were just never going to see eye to eye, and Humphrey, at the age of 80, was no longer so concerned with all that happened to others.

He was waiting for his audience with the Gods where all his friends had preceded him. It would be his time soon enough.

Yet, the kingdom wanted him to attend the celebrations, and there were to be many. So many feasts and fireworks he could not keep track, but the most important came at the end, when word was brought that the Trolls were attacking once more.

Now Humphrey would sit as regent for his son, who went off to fight the ancient enemy. Humphrey had ruled the kingdom before, so it should not have been overwhelming, but at eighty, even the little things could prove troublesome.

Feedback

If you have any commentary, thoughts, ideas about the book (especially if you buy it, read it and like it 😉 then we would love to hear from you.

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Today we have an author interview from my latest work, Beaux Ballrooms and Battles anthology.

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It will be available digitally for $.99 and then after a short period of time sell for the regular price of $4.99

The Trade Paperback version will sell for $12.99

My story in the anthology is entitled: Not a Close Run Thing at All, which of course is a play on the famous misquote attributed to Arthur Wellesley, “a damn close-run thing” which really was “It has been a damned nice thing — the nearest run thing you ever saw in your life.”

Today we are fortunate to have with us Christa Paige who writes in contemporary, paranormal romance and Regency genres. Though we want to hear of her historical work in the Regency.

  1. 1)What moved you to become an author?

I wrote my first story while I was in middle school. It was awful. It was my first romance and it was based during the civil war with a Scarlett O’Hara caricature, a Tale of Two Cities twist and so many clichés. My next attempt came during the height of the Lord of the Rings movies where I dabbled in fan fiction land and met some amazing writers. From there I stepped back from creating stories and embarked upon beta-reading. Soon, many of those in the fanfic community realized that they could write their own stories and I was asked to critique drafts as they were being readied for submissions. One day a good author friend suggested I write my own story and submit it. With my family supporting me and my friends encouraging me, I did just that. I was quite lucky to be offered a contract on my very first submission. Of course, that just whet my appetite and I was soon writing another story and another.

  1. 2)How did you find out about the Waterloo project?

I believe I was on set with my daughter when I saw the post online. I thought it sounded really cool. Many of the authors who were going to be involved had been in an anthology with me for a Regency-themed Christmas series. I couldn’t commit to the writing though. I didn’t think I would be able to participate but around December I had some free time, so I took advantage of those minutes and wrote One Last Kiss.

  1. 3)Can you tell us some of the things that attracted you to writing a piece on the anniversary of this famous battle

About the only thing I knew regarding Waterloo was that it was France against the allies and Wellington was in charge. So, I thought it would be interesting to learn more. My co-author in the Regency series I write is Vivien Jackson and she dubbed me the ‘Queen of Research,’ because I get lost in the delightful journey of fact-finding and obscure information. Waterloo had amazing amounts of detail, people, places, equipment and I found myself excited to learn as much as I could about the war and those involved with it.

  1. 4)Tell us about your current story in the anthology.

Colin Scoville is a lieutenant colonel under the command of Colonel De Lancey. They are in charge of setting up the militia in their various positions on the battlefield. When the reports came in that the French had won a key position in Ligny, Colin must hie to the battle and attend to his duties.

Beatrice Ainsley is a young lady who has had the misfortune of becoming a ward to her uncle who is an aristocrat. They are in Brussels mainly due to Beatrice’s cousin’s commission in Wellington’s militia. He serves under Colin. Beatrice has always found Colin to be striking and a bit unsettling to her nerves. They have a moment before the war that changes everything between them. During Waterloo they are both hoping for the exact same thing: To be reunited and to never be parted again.

  1. 5)How did the story begin to develop in your mind?

I had a completely different story “written” in my mind. It involved a field marshal who is attached to Wellington and is a go-between rushing hither and yon on the battlefield.

Then, I had another story that took over and that included the heroine overhearing some details of the French attack and her need to share that information.

I scrapped both ideas because I couldn’t find a romantic thread in there that I felt wouldn’t be contrived.

About the same time, many of the authors in the anthology began talking about their stories and how they would be going to the ball. Of course I had to research this ball. And, like usual, I decided I wanted to write something different. “We are not going to the ball,” I told my muse. “We aren’t going to the battle, either,” I added, firmly. No balls, no battles. (Alas, do you see that title? Beaux, Ballrooms and Battles….) I started researching again and came across something I felt would be awesome fun to write: An impromptu cricket match. Apparently, some of the soldiers decided to play cricket at a lovely park in Brussels the day of the Duchess of Richmond’s ball. Well, I like being unique. So, cricket it was. From there, the story unfolded and my characters came to life. I did include the battle in the story because it felt—right.

  1. 6)What did you find most challenging about this story?

Uniforms. Battle maps. War terminology. I write romance novels. I like love stories and cravats and propriety. I researched the battle for days and days. I shared maps with my army veteran husband and had him explain things to me. I watched documentaries and Sharpe’s Waterloo (more for entertainment than actual history). I looked up re-enactments and digital video portrayals. When I finally had a grasp of what went down in that gory battle I still got tripped up on the uniforms. However, I did feel a bit chuffed when I went to the Evening with Jane event this past January and saw a man wearing a green uniform. I said to him, “You’re one of the Prince Regent’s Own, a sharp-shooter from the rifle-brigade.” He was very impressed with me and I was impressed with myself. I had learned a bit about uniforms, at least enough to write the battle scenes I needed in the story.

  1. 7)Tell us a little about yourself?

I’m a SoCal native and I grew up in Orange County. When I am not writing, I teach a college course for a local university. I’m the mom of two teenage girls who attend the school for the arts. Sometimes, I end up on set with my youngest while she films movies and commercials. I usually get to sit there and be quiet while enjoying tasty craft services. Other times, my oldest and I go thrift store hunting so she can upcycle vintage finds. Though I have a physical disability I am a runner. My husband is a runner, too, and he coaches me. I don’t run fast. I can’t do it all the time. But, it has given me such joy at reaching milestones. I like getting medals for my accomplishments even if there is a great deal of pushing myself to the finish line. I get to run with my mom, too, and those moments are ones I will cherish forever. I love beagles and have two little furry companions with me all day long. Yep, they are also a reason for the running. Cute they may be but they are also into everything and need their energy depleted so I can write in peace. I love Lord of the Rings, Star Wars and all things Jane Austen. Oh, and I’m a proud Vampire Diaries Delena shipper, but we can keep that on the down-low!

  1. 8)What is your next work, and beyond that, what do you want to work on.

For Regency era stories, I believe that Vivien and I are planning to write a third story based on the Avery family from our Christmas series. I have been considering a follow-up story to One Last Kiss featuring Beatrice’s cousin, Geoffrey. For my paranormal series, I have two novels in the works and I hope to have those in to my publisher soon. For those who have read this series, the stories are about Gunnar and Sevastian while continuing with the Komar family and the current threats they’ve been facing. I put the Kissin’ Cops series on the backburner for the time being but plan to do a complete reboot on two WIPs come summer. For those who follow that series, one story is about Maxwell the scarred SEB deputy from Star Spangled Kiss.

  1. 9)In the Waterloo Shorty Story, is there an excerpt to share? Your favorite scene, a part of your life that you put into the work and think it came out exceptionally well that you would like to share.

The part I really am proud of I don’t want to share here because I want to keep it as a surprise for the reader. But, I really did enjoy writing the scene before Colin and Geoffrey leave for Waterloo:

Colin didn’t know what to expect when he’d arrived at Lord Geoffrey’s residence. Certainly, he hadn’t imagined Beatrice meeting them in the foyer, dressed in nothing but her nightrail and a woolen robe. For a moment, he forgot himself, forgot the devastating state of affairs dragging him from the ball and into the fray. For that moment, he only could think of the beautiful young woman standing there with emotion sparking in her eyes and a firm resolve to remain brave in the face of such trying conditions.

And when he had touched her, taken her hand in his, a thrill surged low within his belly. She’d held on to his fingers, tightly, as if he alone was her anchor in this violent storm. For the first time in his life, he allowed himself to think of the possibilities of having a woman to return home to. A woman who challenged him, surprised him, and roused the fire of need in his veins. Beatrice Ainsley would be that woman.

In any other time and place where war wasn’t upon them, he’d ask to court her and let the matrons titter and gossip all they like. Yes, Beatrice didn’t have a grand title or a vast inheritance to add to his fortune, but she had something more. Compassion. Her emotions were vivid and obvious, playing on her features with little dissembling. The halo of fiery red hair held an allure like no other and in his darkest fantasies, he imagined sliding his fingers into the riotous mess and sifting through the silken tresses. Now, fantasy would have to suffice. But, he assured himself, if he made it through the skirmishes, the canon fire, the artillery and the Imperial soldiers who’d like nothing more than to stick their blade through his heart, he’d find Beatrice and convince her to let him woo her into his arms forevermore.

“It’s polished, sharpened to regimental specification.” Geoffrey’s tone, devoid of his usual charm, had flattened to a guttural intonation.

Colin turned to his soldier … his friend, and saw the stark fear in his wild stare. Geoffrey held the blade of his bayonet to the muzzle of his rifle, fitting it into position. After a quick inspection, he dismantled the gun, setting it aside.

“It will serve you well in battle,” Colin tried to reassure. He clasped his hands behind his back and added, “If you are prevailed upon to use it.”

Flashes of former battles raced in his thoughts. How he’d managed to survive the death toll in the peninsula always surprised him. The casualties, many from his own regiment, weighed heavily on his mind. He recalled their faces, youthful and exuberant, when they had arrived in Spain eager for a triumphant victory. Within days, the gruesome tableau struck great fright into their bravado. Soon, as the death toll increased, friend and foe dying in the blood-soaked mire, canon fire thundering all around them, Colin relied upon the training each of them had received. Calling his soldiers to muster on his orders prodded them from their terror. They had won their skirmish, taking hold of a prominent fort needed to secure the allies’ position. Colin had received commendations and medals for his conquest. No matter the awards or the promotions he garnered, those extinguished lives scarred his soul. At the present, he faced more losses. He was utterly unprepared. But who could be prepared for such times?

Obviously, good ole Boney. More than prepared, at the very least.

“We must take our leave, Geoffrey.” Colin tucked his thumb into the white sash bisecting his torso lest he be caught fidgeting or other such nervous behavior.

“There, I’m set.” Geoffrey turned the clasp on his portmanteau and slipped on his oiled duster coat. “Bollocks, I do believe it will rain soon.”

Colin blew out a breath; he observed the same of the weather. The air was thick, damp and the clouds rolled in heavy and black. This would only make fighting even harder with the mud sapping energy. Visibility for aiming the artillery would greatly diminish. “Yes, bollocks indeed.” He tried for levity but it fell flat.

Metal against metal hummed when Geoffrey slid his sword into the scabbard and secured it at his belt. He looked the soldier true, with his supplies bound on his back and his weapons at the ready. Once they departed, Colin must stop at his apartments and dress for battle, as well. And then, he’d ride to war.

“My lord, shall we see to your horse?” The butler asked and even his stolid composure had been shaken. The usual timbre of his well-modulated voice quavered with a hint of emotion.

“Aye.” Spurred to action, Geoffrey rattled off instructions for his gelding. His attentions now focused on his duties rather than his fears. Colin hoped his friend remained purposeful and managed to keep his head about him when the bedlam arose.

A tingle at the back of his neck put him on his guard as he felt Beatrice’s return before seeing her arrive. It was a curious distinction, a warmth and a scent of rose petals, or simply he’d developed an awareness of her that drew him to notice her even when unseen. It had been the same this afternoon at the park when he’d sworn there were eyes on him, watching him closely. Intuitively, he had the decided opinion those eyes belonged to none other than Beatrice Ainsley. What pretty, fine, eyes they were. Before he took his leave, he vowed to look into those brown, wide eyes and memorize the beauty within.

  1. 10)Who do you think influenced your writing, this work, and who do you think you write like:

Jane Austen definitely influenced my writing of the Regency era. I fell head over heels for Elizabeth and Darcy in Pride and Prejudice. Then, I fell even harder for Edmund and Fanny in Mansfield Park. Mary Balogh’s Slightly Series was also a great influence that my writing partner in crime Vivien Jackson introduced me to. We devoured each new release and discussed every little facet until I was doubly excited to write my very own Regency stories.

I would love to say I write like Miss Austen herself but that would be wishful thinking, indeed. Perhaps I write in a mash-up of all the Regency authors that I read way back when I started scribbling Regency romances. There would be Stephanie Laurens and Mary Balogh, Celeste Bradley and Julia Quinn and so many others that I would love to emulate. I think my mom really influenced me to write One Last Kiss, she gave me so much support and happily cheered me on as I got closer to writing those two powerful words: The End.

  1. 11)Who do you read? What are the things that a reader can identify with that you have grounded yourself in.

I have a huge TBR list. My kindle is bursting at the seams. I enjoy Regencies by Carolyn Jewel and Tessa Dare. I like paranormal stories by Mina Carter and Lara Adrian. But, the three books I am currently reading are The Complete Guide on Knitting for Beginners by Kathy Wilston, Lara Adrian’s Merciless and Carolyn Jewel’s Lord Ruin.

I ground myself in my family and my religion. I am a runner in order to keep my body healthy and to keep my mind sane. I like sarcasm and humor. I cherish friendships and love to cook.

  1. 12)When writing, what is your routine?

My life is fairly routine but my writing is not. It comes in fits and starts. It stalls. I fight my condition and unexpected changes in my schedule. I usually write what’s in my head and when there isn’t anything else in there, my writing slows down. I should probably be a whole lot more disciplined.

  1. 13)Do you think of yourself as an artist, or as a craftsman, a blend of both?

I don’t think of myself as either. I feel like I am lucky to tell stories and share them with readers.

14) Where should we look for your work.

My work is available at all online booksellers and at my publishers’ sites.

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Here is my Amazon Author Page

Here is a link to my website: www.christapaige.com

Follow me on twitter: https://twitter.com/ChristaPaige

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Regency Personalities Series
In my attempts to provide us with the details of the Regency, today I continue with one of the many period notables.

Lieutenant-General Sir Henry Clinton
9 March 1771 – 11 December 1829

Lieutenant-General Sir Henry Clinton came from a family of soldiers. His elder brother was General Sir William Henry Clinton (1769–1846), his father was General Sir Henry Clinton (1738–1795) the British Commander-in-Chief in North America during the American Revolutionary War and his grandfather was Admiral of the Fleet George Clinton (1686–1761).

Clinton received his officer’s commission in 1787. He went on to serve in the Flanders campaign as an aide-de-camp to the Prince Frederick, Duke of York and Albany starting in 1793. He was promoted to lieutenant colonel in 1795. Captured by the French, he was a prisoner in 1796–1797. During the 1799 campaign in northern Italy, he was a liaison officer with Alexander Suvarov’s Russian army. He went to India as adjutant general from 1802 to 1805.

At the Battle of Austerlitz in 1805, Clinton was the British military attaché to the Russian army. He commanded the garrison of Syracuse in Sicily in 1806–1807. He became a Member of Parliament in 1808 and continued his political career for ten years

During the campaign and Battle of Corunna in 1808–1809, he served as Sir John Moore’s adjutant general. He was promoted to major-general in 1810.

During the remainder of the Peninsular War he commanded an infantry division under the Duke of Wellington. He was first appointed to command the 6th Division on 9 February 1812. During the Battle of Salamanca, his division played a key part by defeating French General Bertrand Clausel’s counterattack. He then led his division in the Siege of Burgos campaign. From 26 January to 25 June 1813, Clinton was absent and Edward Pakenham took over the 6th Division. For his conduct in the Vitoria campaign, Clinton was made a knight of the Order of the Bath.

He was absent again from 22 July to October, when he again assumed command of the 6th Division. He was given the local rank of lieutenant general in 1813. He took part in the subsequent victories at the battles of the Nivelle, the Nive, Orthez and Toulouse. At the end of the Peninsular War he was made a lieutenant general and inspector-general of infantry, and was awarded the Army Gold Cross with one clasp.

In 1815 during the Battle of Waterloo, Clinton led the 2nd Division which Wellington posted in reserve behind his right flank. The 2nd Division included the 3rd British Brigade (Maj-Gen Frederick Adam), the 1st King’s German Legion (KGL) Brigade (Col Du Plat), the 3rd Hanoverian Brigade (Col Hugh Halkett) and Lieut-Col Gold’s two artillery batteries (Bolton RA and Sympher KGL). His troops helped to defeat and pursue Napoleon’s Imperial Guard at the end of the battle.

He died on 11 December 1829.

And Coming on April 1st, 2015

Beaux Ballrooms and Battles anthology, celebrating the 200th anniversary of the victory at Waterloo in story.

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Looks good, huh? The talented writer and digital artist, Aileen Fish created this.

It will be available digitally for $.99 and then after a short period of time sell for the regular price of $4.99

The Trade Paperback version will sell for $12.99

Wellington1Grey-2015-03-30-06-00.jpg

My story in the anthology is entitled: Not a Close Run Thing at All, which of course is a play on the famous misquote attributed to Arthur Wellesley, “a damn close-run thing” which really was “It has been a damned nice thing — the nearest run thing you ever saw in your life.”

Samantha, Lady Worcester had thought love was over for her, much like the war should have been. The Bastille had fallen shortly after she had been born. Her entire life the French and their Revolution had affected her and all whom she knew. Even to having determined who she married, though her husband now had been dead and buried these eight years.

Yet now Robert Barnes, a major-general in command of one of Wellington’s brigades, had appeared before her, years since he had been forgotten and dismissed. The man she had once loved, but because he had only been a captain with no fortune, her father had shown him the door.

With a battle at hand, she could not let down the defenses that surrounded her heart. Could she?

As her father’s hostess, she had travelled with him to Brussels where he served with the British delegation. Duty had taken her that night to the Duchess of Richmond’s ball. The last man she ever expected to see was Robert, who as a young captain of few prospects, had offered for her, only to be turned out by her father so that she could make an alliance with a much older, and better positioned (wealthy), aristocrat.Now, their forces were sure to engage Napoleon and the resurgent Grande Armée. Meeting Robert again just before he was to be pulled into such a horrific maelstrom surely was Fate’s cruelest trick ever. A fate her heart could not possibly withstand.

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The End of the World This is the first of the Regency Romances I published. It is available for sale and I hope that you will take the opportunity to order your copy.

For yourself or as a gift. It is now available in a variety of formats. And now at the reduced price of $3.99 you can get this Regency Romance for your eReader. A little more as an actual physical book.

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Barnes and Noble for your Nook

Smashwords

iBookstore

Amazon for your Kindle and as a Trade Paperback

Hermione Merwyn leads a pleasant, quiet life with her father, in the farthest corner of England. All is as it should be, though change is sure to come.  For she and her sister have reached the age of marriage, but that can be no great adventure when life at home has already been so bountiful.

When Samuel Lynchhammer arrives in Cornwall, having journeyed the width of the country, he is down to his last few quid and needs to find work for his keep. Spurned by the most successful mine owner in the county, Gavin Tadcaster, Samuel finds work for Gavin’s adversary, Sir Lawrence Merwyn.

Can working for Sir Lawrence, the father of two young women on the cusp of their first season to far away London, be what Samuel needs to help him resolve the reasons for his running away from his obligations in the east of the country?

Will the daughters be able to find happiness in the desolate landscapes and deadly mines of their home? When a stranger arrives in Cornwall while the war rages on the Peninsula, is he the answer to one’s prayers, or a nightmare wearing the disguise of a gentleman?

Feedback

If you have any commentary, thoughts, ideas about the book (especially if you buy it, read it and like it 😉 then we would love to hear from you.

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Regency Personalities Series
In my attempts to provide us with the details of the Regency, today I continue with one of the many period notables.

General Sir Colin Halkett
1774–1856

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Colin Halkett

General Sir Colin Halkett came from a military family. His father was Major General Frederick Godar Halkett and his younger brother was General Hugh Halkett.

Halkett began his military career in the Dutch Guards and served in various companies for three years, leaving as a captain in 1795.

From 1800 to 1801 he commanded Dutch troops on the Island of Guernsey. On 28 July 1803, a letter of service was issued to Major Halkett (and to Lieutenant Colonel von der Decken) empowering him “to raise a battalion of infantry with an establishment of four hundred and fifty-nine men” and offering him the rank of lieutenant colonel should he increase the number to eight hundred men. These men formed the nucleus of what was to become the King’s German Legion in December 1803. On 17 November 1803, Halkett was promoted to Lieutenant Colonel and given command of the 2nd Light Infantry Battalion. This Battalion was involved in Cathcart’s expeditions to Hanover, Rügen and Copenhagen.

In 1811 he was given command of the Light Brigade of the King’s German Legion. He held this command throughout the Peninsular War from Albuera to Toulouse. On 1 January 1812 he was promoted to Colonel. At the Battle of Salamanca (22 July 1812), he commanded 1st Brigade of the 7th Division under Major General Hope.

Halkett was promoted to Major General on 4 June 1814.

On 18 June 1815, at the Battle of Waterloo he commanded the 5th Brigade in the 3rd Division, under the command of Major General Carl von Alten. He was wounded four times during the course of the battle.

Halkett became Lieutenant Governor of Jersey in 1821 and was the first Lieutenant Governor to reside in the St Saviour Government House, still in use today. During this time he married Letitia Cricket, widow of Captain Tyle of the Royal Artillery. He had a son, Frederick (John) Colin Halkett, on 10 June 1826. He was promoted to Lieutenant General on 22 July 1830 and appointed Commander-in-Chief of the Bombay Army in January 1832. He was Governor of the Royal Hospital Chelsea from 1849 until his death in 1856.

He was appointed colonel of the 71st Regiment of Foot on 21 September 1829. On 28 March 1838 he was removed to the 31st Regiment of Foot, and to the 45th Regiment of Foot on 12 July 1847.

And Coming on April 1st, 2015

Beaux Ballrooms and Battles anthology, celebrating the 200th anniversary of the victory at Waterloo in story.

BBBcorrect-2015-03-29-06-00.jpg

Looks good, huh? The talented writer and digital artist, Aileen Fish created this.

It will be available digitally for $.99 and then after a short period of time sell for the regular price of $4.99

The Trade Paperback version will sell for $12.99

Wellington1Grey-2015-03-29-06-00.jpg

My story in the anthology is entitled: Not a Close Run Thing at All, which of course is a play on the famous misquote attributed to Arthur Wellesley, “a damn close-run thing” which really was “It has been a damned nice thing — the nearest run thing you ever saw in your life.”

Samantha, Lady Worcester had thought love was over for her, much like the war should have been. The Bastille had fallen shortly after she had been born. Her entire life the French and their Revolution had affected her and all whom she knew. Even to having determined who she married, though her husband now had been dead and buried these eight years.

Yet now Robert Barnes, a major-general in command of one of Wellington’s brigades, had appeared before her, years since he had been forgotten and dismissed. The man she had once loved, but because he had only been a captain with no fortune, her father had shown him the door.

With a battle at hand, she could not let down the defenses that surrounded her heart. Could she?

As her father’s hostess, she had travelled with him to Brussels where he served with the British delegation. Duty had taken her that night to the Duchess of Richmond’s ball. The last man she ever expected to see was Robert, who as a young captain of few prospects, had offered for her, only to be turned out by her father so that she could make an alliance with a much older, and better positioned (wealthy), aristocrat.Now, their forces were sure to engage Napoleon and the resurgent Grande Armée. Meeting Robert again just before he was to be pulled into such a horrific maelstrom surely was Fate’s cruelest trick ever. A fate her heart could not possibly withstand.

Read Full Post »

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