You've found the home on the net for romance writer, LaVerne Clark. Thanks for visiting! :)

I write suspense and light fantasy/paranormal set in the beautiful country of New Zealand. A land of myths and magic, Aotearoa (Maori for Long White Cloud) has always been a storytelling nation and it is my pleasure to share mine with you.

Make yourself your drink of choice, stay a while and feel free to leave comments. I love to meet new friends.

Heartpounding suspense and fantasy Downunder

Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Rachel Brimble Pays a Visit

Please welcome the fabulous and mega-talented Rachel Brimble to Novel Natterings. It's a pleasure to have you here Rachel! And I am sooo jealous of your company in this photo! I LOVE Jodi Picoult!

Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

I have been married to my best friend for almost 14 years and we have two daughters, Jessica and Hannah (13 & 10) as well as a third child…a black lab, called Max. We live near Bath in the UK and I have been writing seriously since Hannah started school full time.
In my spare time, I live to read, knit, walk or socialize with friends and family. My biggest vice is chilled white wine and jelly donuts, lol! (Not at the same time!) :) When did you first consider yourself a writer?
When my first paperback arrived in the post – one of the most emotional and memorable days of my life J Searching For Sophie was published in 2007 and I’ve had at least one book published every year since. Very proud of myself!
And so you should be :) That is an amazing accomplishment. Do you remember what inspired you to write your first book?
Yes – my husband. He’s adopted and in 2005/6, he felt a need to look for his birth mother. Our endeavors led to no results unfortunately but the experience and my husband’s emotional involvement prompted me to think about all the adoptive mothers, birth mothers and adopted children out there.

Searching For Sophie is about a woman (the heroine) who gave up her child for adoption years before and when the young girl is abducted, the police need her help. It was very emotional to write and I hope that comes across on the page.

Wow! I could imagine just how emotional that time could be. I read Searching for Sophie and was immediately struck by the depth of emotion you managed to convey. I admit to a few tears reading it, so it was a job well done!
I love call stories. Can you tell us about yours and your reaction?
Mine came via email – what a day! I initially screamed and then cried and then danced around the kitchen. Never forget that day – EVER! Each time I receive an acceptance the feeling is the same, I never take for granted I will always be published, I think that’s one of the worse mistakes a published writer can make.

God has a way of dealing with complacency…

*Nods head in agreement* What drew you to write romance?
I’ve always loved romance, right from a very early age – when I was ten or eleven, I devoured the Sweet Valley High books, then moved on to the Sweet Dreams books (remember them??) and eventually Mills & Boon (Harlequin) before discovering authors like single title books of Nora Roberts, Lisa Gardner and Tess Gerritsen.

Even though I’m a Brit and lived in the UK all my life, I have always read more American writers than UK writers. I am just more drawn to the stories. It’s no surprise I’ve found more success in the states than I have here!
Oh my! In our reading lives, we could have been twins! You're obviously a woman of great taste Rachel ;)
What’s the most challenging part of the writing process for you?

Plotting – I am a continual victim of the ‘sagging middle’. My writing process is simple – I either hear the hero or heroine’s voice in my head or a ‘what if’ scenario will pop up out of the blue. After that, I write a two or three page synopsis and character sketches for my protagonists which often throws up the conflicts.
Then I write a ‘dirty’ draft from start to finish – around the two-thirds mark, I often hit plot problems that I need to work on (or cry over!). The hard work comes in draft two and three…

What’s the weirdest thing that’s happened to you while writing one of your books in terms of the characters or world you’ve created?
Hmm…I can’t think of anything weird. With almost every book, they have gone off in a different direction than I planned but the more writers I speak to, the more common I realize this is. I just run with it, who am I to argue with their story?

The more I write, the less I try to wrestle with my characters too. I think you're right, it is, after all, all about them.
What are you working on right now?
I am currently working on book two of what I hope to be a romantic suspense trilogy. They are set in a fictional seaside town called Templeton Cove in the UK. My agent is currently ‘shopping’ book one so fingers crossed, I’ll have some good news soon J

Good luck, but something tells me you won't be needing it :) Latest news?
I have just sold a new historical novella to The Wild Rose Press and returned the first round edits. Here’s the blurb:

To keep herself from the depths of poverty, Milly Shepherd needs to be appointed manager of the Red Lion Tavern.  The elderly owner is in failing health and has promised her the job permanently if no one more suitable applies.  Milly will fight with her entire being to make the job her own.

Joseph Jacobs needs to supplement his income to pay off his father’s creditors and save him from debtor’s prison.  Though the job as manager of the local tavern looks promising, Milly is favored by both the owner and customers.  Instead, Joseph swallows his pride and agrees to tend bar.

Hope to have cover art and a release date soon – I’ll keep you posted!

Ooo! An exclusive :) I'll be looking out for that one - sounds great! Where can we find you and your books?
Twitter: @rachelbrimble

Rachel’s latest contemporary release is Paying The Piper, available now from Lyrical Press. Here’s the blurb:

Nightclub manager, Grace Butler is on a mission to buy the pub where her mother’s ashes are scattered – except the vendor wants to sell to anyone but her. And the vendor happens to be her father…with a secret Grace will do anything to uncover.

Social worker and all-round good guy, Jimmy Betts needs cash to buy a house for three special kids before their care home closes. In a desperate bid for cash, he agrees to a one-time ‘job’ for bad-man Karl Butler. But in a sudden turn of events, Jimmy finds himself employed by Karl’s beautiful, funny and incredibly sexy daughter, Grace.

Their lives are so different except for one unifying thread – they are both trying to escape the binds of their tyrannical fathers. But is the key to their liberty each other?
Buy Link:


  1. Hi Rachel and LaVerne!
    I covet your picture with Judi Picoult. :)
    Your story about your husband searching for his birth mother is so intriguing, and I love books about following up on adoptions. I once wrote a book about the fallout of a young woman giving up her baby, and thirteen years later having to face the father of the child and tell him. wow was that an emotional book to write.
    Love the blurb for Paying the Piper, and all I can say is - it's hard to keep up with you and all of your guest blogs!
    Wishing you great success.

  2. You're an amazingly busy lady, Rachel. Hope all goes well for the current, and new work, in the pipeline.

  3. Hi Lynne, Nancy & LaVerne!!

    I am SO sorry for my absence yesterday - I always pop in later when you guys are waking up (mid afternoon for me!) but at 4pm yesterday afternoon my youngest daughter had a fall at the local park. Well, when I say fall, she got her leg caught on a spinning roundabout while her body was on the floor.

    The result? Hospital visit and a diagnosis of bruising and pull ligaments around her knee. Poor girl. So she's home with me for the next two days but happy that she's forbidden from sports for a week or so, lol!

    Saying about the Jodi Picoult pic, Lynne - i will be meeting her again on March 28th, can't wait. It would be the third book i've had signed, very excited.

    Nancy, you are so sweet! I feel as though I'm not doing the rounds enough most of the time - this writing is not just about writing, is it??

    Thanks for having me visit, LaVerne - hopefully we'll have some more visitors today :)

    Rachel x

    1. Oooo - your poor girl Rachel! The NZ government have taken most of the older roundabout off our playgrounds because of a spate of horrendous accidents. This was a few years ago now. I won't go into details, but it was to do with long hair getting caught. *shudder
      I used to LOVE playing on those things though - but you couldn't pay me to get on one of them now. Even a swing makes me feel a little sick in the stomach these days! :)

      I hope she recovers well Rachel! I swear these children make us old before our time!