Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Resolving issues

Chapter 6 of ONE INDIAN SUMMER, my weekly online read at eharlequin is now live!

Truths are being revealed.
Plans are being made.
The black moment is upon Harrison and Khushi.

Khushi can't leave India.
Harrison must return to Australia.

I wonder what happens next...

Monday, September 28, 2009

Don't be an ostrich

October is Breast Cancer month in Australia.

Rather timely considering what I've just been through.

Yes, I had a rough week, with an odd, tender spot in right breast. As soon as I felt it, I worried for a few days before making a doctor's appointment. She immediately sent me for an ultrasound, which I had on the weekend.

The young guy who did it asked me how often I did breast checks, then tried to scare me by mentioning I was having the ultrasound to check for cancer.
Well duh!

Though he hummed and ahhed a bit, I got the general gist that everything was okay. Have no idea what the problem is, but it isn't anything 'nasty.'

I walked out numb, relieved, but numb. Made me think of all those women who aren't so lucky.

I, for one, will be more vigilant in checking from now on.

So ladies, please, please do regular breast checks. Better to catch something early.

For more information, visit here.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Switching POV

Another interesting tip while revising your manuscript: switching point of view can make all the difference.

During the black moment of THE TYCOON'S LIVE-IN LOVE, I had Starr seeing red and losing her cool with Callum.

In the revised version, I need Callum to push her away so rather than slashing the scene, I changed POV.

Amazing how powerful it can still remain with just a few tweaks, adding new dialogue, changing things around a bit.

So before you cut that scene you love completely, see if it works in an alternate POV. You may be surprised with the results.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

New cover

I love getting a first glimpse of my covers.


Britt is spot on with the red hair, Italian Nick is sexy, and the room is perfect (the French Suite in Nick's hotel which features prominently in several scenes!)

Nice, huh?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Slashing scenes

When I first wrote Starr and Callum, I had such a clear idea of who the heroine was.
Fun, flirty, sassy, resilient.

Yet there's a scene where she stops a scintillating kiss from Callum.
I need her to do it yet it doesn't fit in with her character.
This is just one of the dilemmas facing me as I tweak this Modern Heat.

I'm a third of the way there. Have slashed scenes (which always kills me!) and tweaked others.
Aiming to have this done by the end of the week...hopefully!

And Chapter 5 of ONE INDIAN SUMMER is now live at eharlequin. Enjoy. :)

Friday, September 18, 2009

Areas to concentrate on

While tweaking Starr and Callum's story, here are the 3 main areas my editor wants me to focus on:

1. Characterisation and emotional conflicts (so the reader can follow their motivations and behaviour every step of the way.)

2. Reworking the plot so that it showcases their personalities in the most exciting, pacy, intense way possible.

3. Upping the sensuality levels-steam up the page at every opportunity.

I posted these because it's amazing how as a writer, you may think you have everything covered, yet all it takes is one, small change (in Callum's instance, changing who died in his past and his role in their death) and the rest of the book needs an overhaul.

I revised 4 chapters last night, nothing major. The nitty-gritty stuff is about to start.
Changing his motivation has changed quite a bit.
And that sensuality stuff? They've been too good, keeping their hands off each other.
All about to change...

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Half way

For readers following my weekly online read at eharlequin, the 4th chapter of ONE INDIAN SUMMER is now live.

Interesting comments in the discussion thread, where readers don't know where it's going.

Guess what? Neither do I!
I'm reading weekly along with everyone else.

Yes, I wrote the thing, so I do know where it's going to finish but as to each chapter, I'm resisting the urge to re-read the rest on my PC and am waiting along with everyone for the next weekly installment. Willpower, huh?

I'm dying to give people hints but am keeping my lips firmly zipped.
Though there's a favourite scene coming up when Harrison takes Khushi to...

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

I'm so not here!

I managed to spend more hours out of bed than in yesterday, so it's an improvement on the weekend.

But head still stuffy, body still hurts, chest rattling with awful cough and no appetite.
Have lost 1kg, so not all bad. But can think of more pleasant ways to do it...

I did write some words yesterday on Alphie. Some, not a lot, but the ideas are flowing.

Now have more revisions for Starr and Callum's story too.
Hmm...head hurts too much to think about how much work I seriously have to do over the next 6 weeks or so. Throw in 6 family birthdays. Weekends away.
I refuse to get stressed.

Challenge is good, right?

Monday, September 14, 2009

Knocked for a six

Been a while since I've been this sick.
In fact, can't remember the last time!

If I pick up the kids' bugs, it's usually the odd cough or cold, because I don't have time to be sick!

This weekend, I was knocked for a six.
Yesterday, rarely made it out of bed, the whole day! Even my eyeballs hurt!
Throw in a toddler with croup (again!), sleepless nights, and I'm wrecked.

This is why a wise writing buddy, Fiona Lowe, always recommends building in extra time for meeting deadlines. You never know what's around the corner.

With my stagnant word count, tight deadline and still throbbing head, wish I'd listened...

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Feel-good reviews

I have the flu, so before crawling into bed, I'm going to post 2 new reviews for A TRIP WITH THE TYCOON that have cheered me up.

"A Trip with the Tycoon is a wonderfully evocative, highly poignant and thoroughly mesmerizing romantic read which I found absolutely impossible to put down. Nicola Marsh has not only crafted a spellbinding tale of taking chances, new beginnings and breathtaking romance, but she has also managed to meticulously recreate the sights and sounds of India so well, that I felt as if I was right there with Ethan and Tamara, surrounded by the exotic beauty of this magnificent country.
Warm-hearted, engrossing and deliciously romantic, A Trip with the Tycoon is another feel-good smash hit by the fabulous Nicola Marsh!"
"Nicola Marsh's latest Harlequin Romance, A Trip with the Tycoon, is a magical tale of new beginnings, second chances and happy endings set under the beautiful Indian sky.

A Trip with the Tycoon is absolutely wonderful! It's fresh, witty, sassy and feel-good, but also poignant, tender and moving. Nicola Marsh never fails to make me care and emphatize with her characters and in A Trip with the Tycoon, she has created a wonderful heroine and an absolutely gorgeous hero!

Set against the majestic Indian landscape and full of charm, pathos and romance, A Trip with the Tycoon will delight and enchant readers everywhere!"

Tuesday, September 08, 2009

On shelves now!

The time has arrived for my double release in the USA!

Both A TRIP WITH THE TYCOON and TWO WEEKS IN THE MAGNATE'S BED are out in the stores now, so indulge your whim for armchair travel and grab both books.

If a trip to India isn't exciting enough, a South Pacific cruise with a very sexy sailor should ramp things up a bit!
A TRIP WITH THE TYCOON is also out in the UK , with the new pale pink cover.
And Chapter 3 of ONE INDIAN SUMMER is now live on eharlequin.
There endeth the plug.

Saturday, September 05, 2009

Another Waldenbooks bestseller!

I've learned that TWO WEEKS IN THE MAGNATE'S BED has been on the Waldenbooks Top 10 Bestseller last for the last fortnight. Cool!

Here's a snippet:

He tapped the stack on his desk, beckoned her over. “Believe me, when you take a look at these you’ll be thanking me for filling them out here. I’ve helped employees through the rigmarole before, we’ll get it done in half the time.”
Okay, so he was being helpful. Then why did it feel like the Big Bad Wolf lending Red a hand before gobbling her up?
“Right, let’s get to work then.”
She plopped on the chair opposite his, drew the forms towards her.
He stilled her hand by placing his on top, setting her pulse racing as she stifled the urge to yank hers away.
“Not much intimidates you, does it?”
She raised an eyebrow. If he had any idea how her heart thumped, her lungs seized and her insides quaked at his simple touch, he’d withdraw that statement.
“I can usually handle stuff.”
Professionally, that is. Anything else and she was as poised as a toddler on ice-skates.
“Think you can handle me?”
His voice had dropped seductively low, the smouldering flame in his eyes warming her, warning her that she was in way over her head with this one if she thought for one second a small boost in confidence could cope with the likes of him at his tempting best.
“I’m sure it wouldn’t be too hard.”
She almost bit her tongue in frustration, unwittingly adding to the wordplay as heat suffused her cheeks, wishing she had the spunk to toss her hair over her shoulder not duck her head like the blushing virgin she almost was.
His grin had tension strumming her taut muscles. “You’re very assured when you want to be.”
Using her brain to fend off his quick retorts, maybe. Easier than admitting she was lousy socially.
“Mainly when putting guys like you back in your place.”
He leaned forward, close enough to whisper in her ear. “Guys like me?”
Resisting the urge to jerk back from his proximity, she settled for a subtle slide of her hand out from under his instead.
“Overconfident. Smooth. Charming. Used to getting your own way.”
Rather than being offended, he laughed. “Guilty as charged.”
He leaned into her personal space again, crowding her, overwhelming her, confusing her.
“So is it working?

“My charm.”
“Not a bit.”

She crossed her fingers behind her back for the little white lie.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

September translations

This month, THE BOSS'S BEDROOM AGENDA is out in Holland, available here.

And PRINCESS AUSTRALIA is out in Germany, in a collection with Julia James, Sharon Kendrick and Amanda Browning, available here.
I love seeing all the different covers for translations.