Monday News

Good morning! (or afternoon, depending on where you are right now!) It’s a beautiful day here in the South East of England — the sun is out, the sky is blue and the children are off school for their Easter Holidays. Which doesn’t mean much here in the Elks house, because they’re still in bed (teenagers). Still, it’s nice to have them home for a change!

Even more exciting, I actually managed to sit outside with a coffee and a book yesterday. Reading in the garden is my favourite thing to do — it really doesn’t get any better than that. We have lots of tree surrounding us, so listening to birdsong while holding my kindle is my happy place. I hope you managed to get some reading done too!

And speaking of books, I’ve got book news times two. Firstly, in case you missed it, I had the UK Cover Reveal for Summer’s Lease last week — the first book in my new Shakespeare Sisters series. Scroll on down for a look at the cover and the blurb — I LOVE IT!

The US/ Canada cover reveal and links will be coming very soon!

Pre-order links are up here: myBook.to/SummersLeaseUK

And you can add to your goodreads here: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34728527-summer-s-lease

Wanna know what it’s about? Read on…

Meet the Shakespeare family: four sisters, four stories . . . four ways to find true love

Cesca Shakespeare has hit rock bottom. Six years after the play she wrote bombed at the box office, she’s unable to hold down a job, keep an apartment, and worst of all her family have no idea how far she’s fallen. So when her fairy Godfather offers her the use of his friend’s Italian villa for the summer, she grudgingly agrees to try writing a new play. That’s before she finds out the house belongs to her arch-nemesis, Sam Carlton.

When Hollywood heart-throb Sam Carlton sees his name splashed across a gossip rag, all he wants to do is hide. That’s how he finds himself traveling to Italy, deciding to spend the summer in his family’s empty villa on Lake Como. Except when he arrives it isn’t as empty as he’d hoped.

Over the course of the hot Italian summer, Cesca and Sam have to come to terms with their pasts. What begins as a tentative friendship quickly grows into an intense attraction – and then a scorching fling. But they can’t hide from reality forever . . . as their different worlds collide, Sam and Cesca face a choice: is this just a summer romance, or could their love weather even the coldest winds?

I also have a 99c sale for Broken Chords going on this week. If you haven’t picked it up already, it’s for sale on all venues. Alex and Lara’s story is one of my favourites — telling their story AFTER their happy-ever-after.

☆.•°*°•.☆99c Sale – This Week Only! ☆.•°*°•.☆

A dirty-talking, sexy rockstar meets a smart-mouthed London girl, and sparks fly. But when she falls pregnant with his baby, their lives begin to unravel. What happens when real life clashes with happily-ever-after…

Amazon ➜ http://mybook.to/BrokenChords

Nook ➜ http://www.barnesandnoble.com/s/2940046258561

iBooks ➜ https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/broken-chords/id1094732599?ls=1&mt=11

Kobo ➜ https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/broken-chords-3

Google ➜ https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Carrie_Elks_Broken_Chords?id=ZWTDCwAAQBAJ&hl=en_GB

That’s all my news for now. I’m planning on spending the next couple of weeks getting to work on a  brand new series (yay) and hopefully spending a lot of time reading in the garden. I hope you have an amazing, book filled week!

January News!

New Year NewsA very Happy New Year to you!

2015 was a year of real highs and lows for me, and although it was often rewarding I have to admit I’m sort of pleased to see the back of it. From a writing point of view it was very successful – I released Broken Chords (Love in London #2) to some great reviews, and also saw the digital edition of Fix You go from strength to strength in the UK, reaching a high of #2 in the iBooks charts and #20 in the Amazon charts.

Somehow I even managed to write 2 more books, both of which are awaiting publication dates. Canada Square is #3 in the Love in London series, and tells the story of Amy, a student who interns in a big city partnership, and Callum, her boss. My beta readers think that this could be the best book in the series so far, and I hope that you’ll think the same! Release date for this should be coming soon.

In other news, I’ve started a new secret project, a 4 book series that I hope to update you on soon. I had a lot of fun planning these stories, and can’t wait to unleash them on the world.

From a personal point of view 2015 was challenging. At the end of 2014 my daughter was diagnosed with Scoliosis, and this year we’ve spent a lot of time at hospital appointments with her, culminating in a spinal fusion operation in December. Though she faced many challenges this year, I’m delighted to say she’s recovering in leaps and bounds while keeping a smile on her face, and making sure her school work is done. To say I’m a proud mum would be an understatement.

Fortunately I also had lots of lovely things happen to me in 2015. I attended 3 signings in the UK and managed to meet lots of wonderful readers and bloggers, and also had some success abroad, selling the rights to Fix You to Germany and Italy, with more announcements to come. Coming Down was also translated to Portugese and released in Brazil. Fix You will be released in paperback in the UK on 4th February 2016, and will have a gorgeous new cover. I can’t wait to share it with you!

In 2016 I plan to spend a lot of time writing and also with my now-recovering family. I hope to have at least a couple of new releases to share with you, as well as meet many of you at the signings and events I’ll be attending this year. Remember, if you want to be the first to hear about new releases, make sure you sign up for my newsletter. I often have exclusive sales news and competitions solely for my subscribers there.

In the meantime, I hope that 2016 treats you kindly, and that you managed to grab some rest and recovery during the holiday period.

Lots of love,

Carrie Pink

What do you Google? #LoveChatWrite Blog Hop – November 3 2015

Welcome to this week’s Romance Writer’s Weekly Blog Hop. If you’ve arrived from Jeanne McDonald’s blog, don’t forget to check out her fabulous book, Compass.

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This week we are answering the question: What did you Google?

The internet is an invaluable research tool for writers, but sometimes we google some searches that would raise more than a few eyebrows if seen out of context. We’ve all heard the tales of the thriller writer whose Google history has led to a visit from law enforcement, and the erotica writer whose searches have raised more than a few eyebrows. I bet if anybody (including non-writers) looked at their history they’d see a huge range of eclectic sites that are a mixture of the mundane and the embarrassing.

Nowadays it’s not only interesting facts that we Google, but anything and everything. I’d lay my hat on the fact that anybody going on a first date has almost certainly googled the other person before they meet them, and probably knows far more about them than is their date would want them to!

So what’s the last thing I Googled? Well I’m sad to say I can’t think of a single thing I’ve searched for that would either alarm the police, or my husband. So instead, let’s have a bit of fun.

What comes up if I Google “why is”…

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Um, I have no answer to that one. And I don’t think I want to see what Google has to say on this!

 

What comes up if I Google “can i m”…

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Great Advert for the UK there. By the way the answer is no!

Finally, what comes up if I Google “do q”…

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So there you have it. Google has an answer for everything, and it pretty much looks as though everything has been searched for. If you ever find yourself wanting to marry your cousin, but your poop turns green, perhaps a duck can help you.

Carrie Pink

Now we’ve sorted that out, let’s hop over to  Leslie Hachtel’s blog and find out her Google secrets. 

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What’s Your Secret? #LoveChatWrite Blog Hop -13th October 2015

Welcome to this week’s Romance Writer’s Weekly Blog Hop. If you’ve arrived from Kristi Rose’s blog, don’t forget to check out her fabulous book, The Girl He Knows

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This week it’s Sarah Hegger’s chance to ask us a question: What’s your secret passion? I have a thing for shoes and B-grade fantasy movies, what are some of your guilty pleasures?

 

Illustration depicting cutout printed letters arranged to form the word confession.

Photo Credit: Depositphotos

Okay, so I thought long and hard about this one. Maybe I should come clean that I am a gym bunny, constantly working out my iron-hard abs. Or that I’m a secret artist, creating installations that people pay millions for. But anybody who knows me (and that means most of you) would laugh loudly, poke me in my squashy stomach and remind me that I can’t even colour inside the lines.
So yeah, I won’t bother with those then!
Instead I’m going to come clean about an honest-to-god secret that I try to hide from everybody. A skeleton in the cupboard that I’ve tried to keep there for the past nine years. It won’t be pretty, and it won’t be pleasant, but maybe it’s my chance to get it out in the open.
Deep breath, rolling drums…

I’m a Real Housewives addict.

Wow, that was hard! It’s also the truth. I’ve been a fan since the first series of the Real Housewives of Orange County (or RHOC for those of us in the know) back in 2006. From the very first episode I was hooked, my mouth agape by the antics of Kimberley, Jeanna, Laurie, Vicki and Jo. Not to mention the ever-so-aptly named Slade Smiley. If any of you recognise the names above, you need as much help as I do.
2 years after RHOC first aired (see, you know what I’m talking about – it’s only a few more steps until you’re hooked, too), my addiction was fanned by the first series of the Real Housewives of New York (RHONY – see what they did there?) It was like the Orange County series but without the sun, plus a whole lot more crazy. With an ex-model turned French duchess, a cosmopolitan-sipping entrepreneur, and the amazing, social climbing couple of Alex and Simon, RHONY was like a little piece of heaven for a people watcher like me.
I think that’s why I like the episodes so much. They’re made up of a mixture of real-life action and commentary, and each one is like being at a party, watching the guests mix together and then talk about each other behind each others’ backs. It’s intensely fascinating, and a gift for those who want to find out what makes people tick.
Since 2010, more franchises have been added. Now Atlanta, Washington DC, New Jersey, Beverley Hills and so many more have been added. They’ve even spread abroad, including Vancouver, Melbourne and Cheshire in the UK. But it’s the earlier ones (the originals) that still hold my heart. I’ve grown up with these guys. They’re like friends you love to hate, yet compulsively stalk on Facebook to see what they’re up to now.
In short, they’re a guilty pleasure. And I’m (almost) not afraid to admit it.

Carrie Pink

Now I’ve got that off my chest, let’s hop over to  Dani Jace’s blog and read her secret passion. 

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Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner – Romance Weekly #LoveChatWrite Blog Hop – 8th September 2015

Welcome to this week’s Romance Writer’s Weekly Blog Hop. If you’ve arrived from Teresa Keefer’s blog, hi, and thanks for clicking! Teresa’s one of our newest members so don’t forget to show her some love.

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This week Susan Scott Shelley asks – Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner? Given the choice of any authors in the world (living or deceased), who would you want as a guest?

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This question isn’t as easy to answer as I first thought. My initial problem is there are so many authors I’d love to meet (including all of those who are part of the wonderful Romance Writers’ Weekly group) that it would end up being one hell of a feast!
How to narrow it down? Especially when I’d love to see Dorothy Parker sharing some bread with Jane Austen, while Alice Walker pours the wine. The image alone makes me want to smile…
But if I can’t have everybody, and I have to stick to one person, I guess I’ll go for somebody I think I’d get on well with. Maybe someone I could fan girl, while still finding some things we have in common. While I’m at it, why not shoot for the stars? So let me introduce you to my dinner guest, Mrs Joanna K Rowling.

This Oct. 16, 2012 photo shows author J.K. Rowling at an appearance to promote her latest book "The Casual Vacancy," at The David H. Koch Theater in New York. Rowling, the popular author of the "Harry Potter" series, spoke for just over an hour before a capacity crowd in her sole U.S. public appearance to promote her first novel for grownups. (Photo by Dan Hallman/Invision/AP)

 I first discovered the Harry Potter books when my daughter was a baby. His adventures got me through some dark times, and were the only company I had on those late night feeds. Her writing drew me in from the start, as well as the world she managed to build, and I have to admit there were some times when I felt more at home at Hogwarts than I did in my own world!
It isn’t simply her writing that draws me to her, however. She’s also a true philanthropist who has been through some hard times herself. She wrote the first Harry Potter book whilst being supported by the State, and in spite of her riches has never forgotten where she came from. Like many of us, she has suffered from depression, and some of her most memorable words are those of support to fellow sufferers.

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Her story is an inspiring one. Like me, she was born in a small village near Bristol and also like me, her father was an engineer. She suffered a lot in early adulthood, but her rise to fame was meteoric. If we were sharing a bottle of wine I’d like to ask her whether she’d do it all again, give up her privacy for the pride of her achievement. And whether she had any advice for an aspiring author like me.
In the meantime I shall be eating dinner with my lovely family instead, and pondering on more of her wise words like these ones…

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So what do you think? What famous author would you like to share a meal with?
Let’s hop over to  Leslie Hachtel’s blog and see who’s coming for dinner at her place. 

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Favourite Quotes – Romance Weekly #LoveChatWrite Blog Hop -1st September 2015

Welcome to this week’s Romance Writer’s Weekly Blog Hop. If you’ve arrived from Sarah Hegger’s blog, hi, and thanks for clicking! Don’t forget to check out her new release – Nobody’s Fool.

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This week Jeanne McDonald asks – What is one of your favorite quotes from your book(s). Explain the reason why it’s your favorite and its significance to the story and characters

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This week I decided to go old school, and talk about one of my favourite books, Pride and Prejudice. I’m not alone in my love of this book, although back when I was a fifteen-year-old student I was the only one in my class who actually enjoyed reading it for English. Why did I love it so much? Let’s take a look at my quote and I’ll tell you…

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This quote says everything about the first part of the book. Although they are words of love, it’s a ‘gritted teeth’ admission rather than a passionate  declaration. From the start Mr Darcy has looked down upon the Bennett family, and Elizabeth Bennett has felt disdain for his prideful ways. Then when Elizabeth is staying with her cousin, Mr Collins, and Darcy is visiting his aunt at Rosings, they come into contact with each other. Mr Darcy tells her how he loves her in spite of her background, and pretty much against all his better judgement. Exactly what a girl wants to hear! Way to go, Darcy.
Of course Elizabeth declines his favour, and tells him to go and take a running jump. In the BBC adaptation he does exactly that. If you’ve not seen it before, I can highly recommend the ‘lake’ scene (insert gratuitous clip here, because you can never get enough Darcy!!)
The thing I love about Pride and Prejudice (apart from Mr Darcy, of course) is the character development. Elizabeth and Darcy start out hating each other – she dislikes his pride, and he dislikes her family. But as the two get to know each other better, something deeper grows between them. Though Mr Darcy is the first to realise that this connection might be love, Elizabeth eventually catches up. That’s because Darcy finally realises he doesn’t love her IN SPITE of who she is, but BECAUSE that’s who she is. An important difference. When he carries out his final act of chivalry–saving her sister from a fate worse than death–Elizabeth, too, realises that she’s fallen in love with him.
P&P is full of so many beautiful quotes it was hard to narrow one down. But this one is perfect, because it is truly the watershed of the book, taking us from their unfortunate beginnings and deep into the middle, where attachment starts to form. That’s the best part of any romance in my opinion!
Now let’s hop over to  S.C. Mitchell’s blog and read his favourite quote. 

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Flashfiction – Romance Weekly #LoveChatWrite Blog Hop -25th August 2015

Welcome to this week’s Romance Writer’s Weekly Blog Hop. If you’ve arrived from Kristi Rose’s blog22268970, hi, and thanks for clicking, and don’t forget to check out her book The Girl He Knows – currently on sale for 99c.

 

This Fiona Riplee has posed the following challenge:

Your hero & heroine are playing an “old-school” board game (one with an actual board or pieces old or new – just not a video game). The winner gets a special prize. 1000 words or less.

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“Okay, so we have Clue, Monopoly, and I think there’s a really old chessboard somewhere back here. Any of those appeal?”
It takes a moment to realise he’s asked a question. I’m too busy staring at the sliver of skin between his belt and the hem of his shirt, revealed when he bent over to sort through the games closet.
“Kirsty?” he prompts again.
Jesus, when did he grow up? The last time I saw Nate Matthews he was still losing his battle with puberty, his voice spanning two octaves with a vocal range an opera singer would be proud of. That was ten years ago. The man kneeling in front of me bears only the faintest resemblance to that long-ago teen.
“I can’t play chess.” My reply is as dumb as the rest of me. I’m too transfixed by his long, thick eyelashes to think of anything else. Calm yourself, woman. He’s your best friend’s little brother. Completely verboten.
Therefore all the more alluring.
“I could teach you.” He sits back on his haunches, flashing me a dazzling smile. “It’s not as if we have anything else to do.”
He isn’t wrong. The rain battering against the windows of his parent’s holiday cottage is a reminder of why we are here alone. His sister, Cara, plus her boyfriend Dean and our other friend Marie should be on the last ferry tonight. But with the weather being as it is, there’s no way the ferryman will chance the crossing. So it’s me and Nate, plus a closet full of board games.
And a whole host of my raging hormones.
“How’s college?” I ask him. Cara keeps me up to date with her family’s news, and I know Nate’s studying Physics at MIT. I graduated last year, being two years older than the kneeling Adonis, and am currently interning at an advertising firm in New York. That’s why I jumped at the chance of a week’s cheap vacation at the Matthews’ lake house in Michigan. Nate and I flew in this morning, hiring a car to cover the 200 miles to the lake, while the others were driving up after work.
Of course they’ll be sleeping on the other side of the lake tonight, while Nate and I weather the storm here. Alone. Just the two of us.
He sets up the chess board with nimble fingers. How many times has he done this? He lays each piece in sequence as if it’s his second nature. There’s something unbearably sexy about his nerdiness.
“Is it hot in here?” I ask. “This storm hasn’t gotten rid of the humidity.”
He looks amused. “I was just thinking how cool it was getting. Do you want me to find a fan? I’m pretty sure Mom keeps one here somewhere…” Nate looks around, his brows dropping into a frown. He rolls his bottom lip between his teeth, and it sparks a memory. Twelve year old Nate trying to explain why the Theory of Relativity was really cool, while Cara and I laughed uproariously at him.
I’m not laughing now.
“I’m okay. Maybe I’m having a hot flush,” I tell him. “Premature menopause or something.”
Nate starts to laugh. “I know you’re older than me, but I don’t think you’re quite middle aged yet. You’re way too young and pretty for that.”
Is it stupid that I want to jump up in the air and scream when he calls me pretty?
“You go first.” He gestures at the board. I reach out for a black pawn. “No, white always goes first in chess.” There go those long eyelashes again. “And you can move two spaces forward if you want.”
I lift up the white pawn and place it two squares ahead. “Like that?” I smile when I ask.
He grins back. “Perfect.”
Nate plays his next move and then I take my turn, both of us flirting to the soundtrack of the storm. When I lift up my knight and slide it diagonally across the board, Nate wraps his hand around mine to show me the right way to move it.
“He moves like that?” I raise my eyebrows. “What kind of game is this anyway? I knew we should have played Monopoly.”
“I’d have kicked your ass at that too.”
“I don’t doubt it,” I say. “But at least I’d have known what I’m doing.”
His hand is still holding mine. “Don’t you like me telling you what to do?”
I’m about to reply when a crash of thunder echoes across the lake and the lights flicker three times before going out altogether. The sudden blackness makes my chest tighten with panic and I reach out, my hand opening and closing until I grab hold of Nate’s top. My fingers close around it in a vice grip.
“Nate? I hate the dark.” Fear strangles my words.
A moment later his arms circle my waist. “Hey, it’s okay. I’m here. It’s just a power cut.”
There’s something warm and reassuring about his embrace, but my heart is still racing. “Do you have a generator or some candles?”
“There’s a whole bundle of them in the kitchen, but I’m gonna have to leave you to get them.” He’s so close I can feel his breath on my ear. “Will you be okay?”
“No! Take me with you.” I stand up, my sudden movement knocking the chessboard. I can hear the pieces scatter across the wooden floor. “Oh shit.”
“Let’s call it a draw.” Amusement is laced through his words. “Or we can have a rematch tomorrow.”
He guides me into the kitchen, one hand circling my waist, the other holding my hand. He’s warm, he’s strong, he makes me feel safe. He may be Cara’s little brother but he’s all man, and I can’t think of anything I’d rather do than lose to chess to him every night this week.
Every day, too, if it comes to that.
“A rematch, definitely.”
I made it in 995 words! Now let’s hop over to  S. C. Mitchell’s blog and take a read of his flash fiction. 

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