The Mistress of Pennington's Tour

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Welcome my online friend and romance author, Nancy Jardine!

 Welcome, Nancy - so glad to have you here today. You seem so busy with promo of not one, but two releases. Crazy!! You have my sympathies and excitement - sympathies because no author has any idea of the time promo takes until they do it and excitement because nothing beats the feedback and interaction with fellow readers and writers. Hope you enjoy your time with me!

Hi Rachel, it’s great to be with you today- especially since I’m right in the middle of two August releases.  My TWRP light hearted contemporary romance, TAKE ME NOW, was released on the 3rd of August and now I’m into pre-launch promotions for my historical romance, THE BELTANE CHOICE, which releases on the 31st August from Crooked {Cat}Publishing.

On with the questions!

1)   When and why did you decide you wanted to be a published author?
Two large non-fiction projects for school purposes made me think I could write fiction, too.  So, during the summer holidays in 2005, I wrote the first draft of a time-travel for 9-12 year olds, but abandoned it due to work pressures. It was 2008 before I re started any personal writing-having cut back to 3 days a week teaching.  I poached some of the ideas from the Celts and Romans novel for children, wrote my first historical romance and, naively, sent it off to one of the large publishers. While I waited for nearly a year to get a big fat rejection slip, the writing bug had got its hooks into me. I wrote two contemporary novels. The first of these was published Aug 2011, the second published 3rd Aug. 2012-both by The Wild Rose Press. Since September 2011 I now write full-time. I’m delighted to say that a vastly revised version of that historical romance, THE BELTANE CHOICE, is being published on Aug 31st 2012, by Crooked{Cat}Publishing.

2]What is the best and worse thing you have learned from an editor/agent?
I’ve never had an agent. I’ve been spectacularly unsuccessful in getting one for my novel for children. The best thing I’ve learned for my first editor was to work hard, and work even harder, at giving what she called ‘a diamond in the rough’ the best shine ever. The worst thing is that after decades of teaching kids to use adjectives and adverbs to enhance their work, I’m now told to zap pretty well all of them. 

3]Favourite author/s?
Sorry! I don’t really have one. If I like an author I will go and buy/read more of their work. Biggest contenders for a favourite author whose work I re-read would be: Jane Austen, Wilbur Smith, Steven Donaldson, David Wishart, Lyndsey Davis, Morgan Llewellyn, Tolkein…

4] What is your typical day?
I crawl downstairs and gobble a large glass of OJ while the coffee machine does its work. That’s followed by 2 cups of coffee to get me going. I check emails etc while drinking them. Then it depends on the weather. I’ve a fairly large unruly garden so if it’s not raining I’m out there for a while. Other wise I’m likely to be writing. Two days a week I’m delighted to say I now care for my 11 month old granddaughter. I still waste too much time checking my tasks for the day, even though I’m getting better at making lists. It’s keeping up with everything that’s the problem!

5] Share your blurb or short excerpt from your latest release with us

My blurb for THE BELTANE CHOICE can be read on the Crooked {Cat} website so I’m sharing a little excerpt with you today.

My word is yours, Lorcan of Garrigill.”
The next howling cry came from neither Nara, nor the boar, but the animal was the target of the vehemence when a jagged stone slammed its rump. It whirled around, yowling in fury, and charged off in the direction the sling-shot had come from. Close to Nara’s tree, a lithe warrior surged from behind a dense clump of bushes to swoop up her spear.
   The spear hurtled up. She grasped it while the irate beast squealed its return. Lorcan’s bloodthirsty cry boomed, and then his spear slashed through the air to spike the boar full in front, Nara’s thrust from above a powerful one to its head. The animal keeled over and lay twitching and groaning.
She jumped down from the tree as he plunged his sword into the beast; the boar’s writhing slowing to a halt. One foot balanced on the animal’s belly, he yanked out her spear then straightened up, the muscles of his powerful shoulders stretching the material of his orange and brown checked woollen tunic.
Ill-tempered eyes confronted her, black brows puckered tight. Absorbing the warrior’s dark scowl, Nara felt a strange rush of awareness sweep through her, despite that he looked angry. The exhilaration continued, causing her breath to falter, her heart an erratic beat inside her chest. The trembling of her leg muscles was in reaction to her drop to the ground, but such an act did not normally make her whole inside quiver.
The handsome, yet glowering, warrior in front of her caused it. She had endured two long lonely moons waiting for a response like this to happen, and now could not believe it had come to pass. Her mouth curved, delight widened her eyes, because this instinctive affinity with a man was what she needed to restore her spirit.

 6] Who would you cast to play your hero & heroine in a movie?
My hero, Lorcan, would ideally be Viggo Mortensen. My heroine would probably look like Emily Blunt.

7] Did you plan this book? Or write it as it came?
It was a total pantser first draft of The Beltane Choice. Although an avid reader of romantic fiction I always read them for pleasure. I never looked at construction, or writing techniques. I learned through that rejection process that I needed to work much harder at POV techniques- and that was only one area that needed a lot of work. The version being published in Aug 2012 has gone through quite a few revisions. Subsequent work has been more planned-especially my history mysteries which have complicated plots. 

8] What surprised you the most when you became published?
The usual complaint of the new author- I had absolutely no idea about the marketing involved. My first contract was signed by the end of March 2011. At that time I had no website, no blog (didn’t even know how to blog). By my August release date I had had to set up Website, blog, Facebook, make a book trailer, and was on one Yahoo author’s loop. I’m still learning, a lot, but have elected slowly into other social networks, like Twitter.

9] Do you have a dedicated writing space? What does it look like?
Messy. I have a proper office desk near the window in the dining room. It holds my laptop; printer; lamp; rectangular wicker basket cluttered with files for my books, dictionaries, and books I’m currently using for research; file tray for printer paper the top layer doubling as my paper ‘in tray’.  My camera, iphone, and kindle battle for any spare space with tubs for pens, pencils, external hard disk etc. The cork pin board behind my desk is my ‘man candy’ area/ also know as my leading ladies area, too.  I’ve learned, by default, to purchase images for my characters from my favourite Royalty Free site at the outset of beginning a novel. That way I remember characteristics etc. a lot better. Above the pin board are framed copies of my 3 book covers.

10] What’s next for you?
My 3rd contemporary, Topaz Eyes, (another ‘history mystery’) has been accepted by Crooked {Cat} Publishing, and is likely to be published by December 2012. And I haven’t given up on publishing my time-travel novel for children-Dabbling With Time.
Current WIPS are a sequel to The Beltane Choice, a sequel to Dabbling With Time, and a family saga-loosely based on Ancestry research of my own family. It’s amazing what you turn up when you do that kind of research!
Readers can find me at –
Twitter - @nansjar
I’m also on Goodreads and LinkedIn – Nancy Jardine    

Books by Nancy Jardine:
TAKE ME NOW – The Wild Rose press: Book Trailer:
MONOGAMY TWIST- The Wild Rose Press :  
Link to YouTube Book Trailer for Monogamy Twist is:

THE BELTANE CHOICE: Crooked{Cat}Publishing – available in eBook formats from 31st August 2012, in print from the 26th October 2012.
Book Trailer for THE BELTANE CHOICE:

A former Primary teacher, Nancy Jardine lives in the picturesque castle country of Aberdeenshire, Scotland, with her husband who feeds her well or she’d starve! Ancestry research is one of her hobbies, as is participating in exciting events with her family which drag her away from the keyboard. In her garden she tends real flowers and grows spectacular weeds, which she’s becoming very fond of! She cherishes the couple of days a week when she child-minds her gorgeous granddaughter.

Thanks for having here today to answer your great questions, Rachel!

 You're welcome - great interview answers too! Okay, over to you guys. Comments??


  1. Hi Rachel,
    It's 10am and a dry and slightly sunny day here in Aberdeenshire...big surprise there, since that isn't happening too often. Scared to shout it out, though in case it changes. I'm looking forward to a nice day at the keyboard give or take some odd typing from my active 11 month old granddaughter. Yipee!I'll be able to blame the typos on her, today!

  2. Hi Rachel and Nancy, what a fascinating interview, ladies. I have to empathise with so much of what you say, Nancy, especially the amount of time one has to spend on 'promotion', and you are such a busy lady! It's also very interesting to know how many fellow authors have been given our first 'chance' by The Wild Rose Press, even those of us who live in the UK.

    Wishing you much success and lots of sales with your new releases.

    1. Thank you, Lyn. That first chance will never be forgotten! My goal is now to get on with WIPs and get down to some serious writing...:-)

  3. Nancy, I think a lot of us began our writing career in fits and starts. Glad you stuck with it! Best of luck with your new release.

    1. Thanks for popping in, Jannine. I'm glad I stuck with it, too. Most of my goals are coming to just takes a little patience. -)

  4. Great interview ladies, and best wishes with all your new releases this year Nancy. I agree with Hywela Lynabout promotion and the role TWRP plays in accepting UK author's.

  5. Nice to talk to you, Sherry. I can't be more pleased with where I've reached to date. Thanks for the good wishes-and enjoy your day.

  6. Wonderful interview, questions and answers. I liked Nancy's comment about the marketing. I am just now learning how much of the marketing has to be done by the author! It's a bit overwhelming, but fun at the same time.

  7. Hi, Delsheree! I feel, even after a year, that there's still so much more to learn about the marketing, more tips and techniques to try that will make more people read our novels. You learn something new every day is now a pretty repetitive mantra of mine.:-)

  8. Love your excerpt!
    It's certainly been a busy year for you with no slow-down in sight. That's what keeps use young.
    Good luck and great sales!

  9. Hi Sandy! Thank you. Well, I have to say I've been sort of slacking this last week-in between the two launches. I had a few days break from blogs. The fact that I've been doing edits, arranging local book events has limited my WIP tine, but I did manage a little research for one of those as well. :-)

  10. Hi Sandy! Thanks for finding me today. It's lovely to see you on Rachel's lovely blog.

  11. Hi Rachel, Thanks for allowing me to visit you today! Time for me to disappear-*waving goodbye*. I got all my edits done today, a blog post written, and other bits and pieces finished so it's time to do a tiny bit of reading a nice little HEA before I fall asleep!