Tag Archives: Louise Roberts

“Dragoon Serenade” to be published

I am absolutely thrilled that Luminosity Publishing has accepted my novella written under my pen name, Louise Roberts, and have offered me a 3 year publishing contract which, of course, I have accepted.

Originally the “Romance in War” series was intended to be written as ‘sweet’ romances, where sex scenes happen behind closed doors and everything is left to the readers’ imagination. However, time has shown that readers’ appetites to sex have changed and ‘sweet’ is no longer a viable option. In a way it is a shame to be obliged to write romances that include graphic sex scenes just to be able to sell the book. It makes me wonder where our society is heading…

I hadn’t approached Luminosity Publishing when I had first set out to ‘sell’ the book as it was in the ‘sweet’ category, and Luminosity has, since publishing book 1 – “Letter from a Stranger” in this series in June 2015, withdrawn ‘sweet’ romances from its portfolio.

“Dragoon Serenade” was completed in 2016 and I was obliged to seek other publishers who still claimed to publish such a genre. Unfortunately however for one reason or another I was constantly receiving rejections for this book.

The most recent rejection gave the following reason:

While we found the history of your story fascinating, and your characterization strongly drawn, unfortunately we didn’t feel that Dragoon Serenade would work for us at this time. The story is very interesting, but is a historical story with a romantic subplot, and we are, first and foremost, a romance publisher.

We are actively looking for historical stories, but they need to be primarily romances, and Dragoon Serenade, unfortunately, doesn’t fit that bill.

Frankly I was left dumbfounded as in my opinion the story clearly showed the romantic elements between heroine and hero working side by side with the historical content of the story. My worry was that if I changed the story too much to satisfy the publisher’s issues I would dilute the entire plot.

I was also told by another editor that the Prologue was confusing and the story might work better if I took it out.

With such negative reviews I was determined to make the necessary changes for the betterment of the story. So on reviewing the Prologue I tended to agree with the editor’s concerns, but rather than remove it I replaced it with an entirely different start. The changes were such that I subsequently was obliged to go through the entire manuscript to ensure the continuity of the story reflected the revised beginning.

With regard to SEX, I have since increased the heat level and added a few extra graphic sex scenes just to whet the readers’ appetites. Although in my defense, I would say that I have kept the scenes tasteful as anything else would be out of character of my heroine and hero.

“Dragoon Serenade” is set during World War Two and is centered around the towns Cannes, Golfe Juan [where I currently reside today], Biot, Vallauris, and Agay which are located in the department of Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur in southern France.

My heroine, code name ‘Simone’, is an agent of the British Special Operations Executive [SOE]. The SOE were highly trained and were specifically used for espionage, sabotage, assassinations, and reconnaissance. Although Resistance fighters had been formed when these people’s countries capitulated to the German forces, it was the SOE who coordinated them into organized fighter networks, ensuring they were supplied with military stores. This was particularly the case in France during the lead up to the invasions of Normandy and the Cote d’Azur.  The latter was code-named “Operation Dragoon”.

The hero in the story is code-named ‘Hibou’ the French word for ‘owl’.  Simone had previously known him from the time she had spent in northern France several months before the D-Day landings. At the time the two had been romantically involved. Now as Simone is being transported by submarine to Golfe Juan she hopes to be able to reignite their love.

I have done what I can to show the strong bond between Simone and Hibou but not at the expense of the action which occurs throughout the story. And I have tried to emphasize their romantic relationship in all its aspects. From tenderness to strong sexual prowess; desire, kindness and love, but inevitably where romance is concerned there is always a hint of jealousy. Just as in real life where there’s romance there will also be tears. However as with all good romances there is ALWAYS a Happy Ever After Ending.

“Dragoon Serenade” may be a romance, but it is one set in the most difficult of circumstances. War is not pretty at the best of times, and when your main characters are operating in the shadows with the Gestapo close on their heels, the tensions run high.

Of all the stories I have written so far “Dragoon Serenade” gave me the most enjoyment, and at times even made me cry – but as a romance writer I can get quite emotional.

I prayed that I had done enough with the revisions to satisfy those who would publish my story, and I could only hope that they would appreciate the efforts made that aim to keep the romance and action elements working alongside each other and not at the expense of losing the story’s personality.

It was therefore a shot in the arm when Luminosity Publishing offered me a contract to publish the story.

The comments I received along with their offer has shown me that the revisions I had made were obviously the best thing I had done:

I loved the plot in this story.

It held my interest, and I read the whole book in one session.

The writing is very good.

I am sure readers will love it as much as me.

Luminosity Publishing have set a projected a release date of October 2017 for the e-book.

They will combine Books 1 and 2 into a paperback version to be released hopefully by November 2017.

Also, as Dawné Dominique has created such fantastic covers for “The Sword and the Rose” series and also the cover for my crime novel “Out of the Darkness”, Luminosity has agreed for me to approach Dusktildawn Designs to create a cover for “Dragoon Serenade”.

RLB – Tomewriter

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Sensual Liaisons: The Sword and the Rose Collection

sensual-liaisons

Cover Design by Dusktildawn Designs and Luminosity Publishing

All original artwork by Dawné Dominique and copyright remains with her.

 

Sensual Liaisons: The Sword and the Rose Collection by Louise Roberts is a paperback that is to comprise of books 2, 3, and 4 of The Sword and the Rose Series.

So that these three great e-books can be available in print, Luminosity Publishing has incorporated them into a paperback.

The book is due for release on 15th April 2017 and can be purchased through the usual distributor channels such as Amazon, Smashwords, Barnes and Noble, and Luminosity Publishing’s own website.

Although there had been plans for three more books in the series it was decided that it was time to end the Spanish 17th century saga after book 4.

 

Louise Roberts will now concentrate on her “Romance in War” series comprising of different stories set during World War II.

Book 1 – Letter from a Stranger is set in London during the Blitz was published by Luminosity Publishing in June 2015 and is available on Amazon, Smashwords, Barnes and Noble.

Book 2 – Dragoon Serenade is set in the south of France during the three weeks leading up to the Allied invasion of Operation Dragoon on 15th August 1944. Although this book is completed it is currently awaiting publication.

Book 3 – Balor’s Landing is set on the tiny island of Toraigh [Tory] off the Irish coast of county Donegal starting in September 1944. This book is Louise’s current work in progress, with four more books planned after this one.

In addition Louise is considering starting other adventures with new characters set during the 18th century but at this stage she won’t give anything away as to where and when those characters will emerge.

 

RLB – Tomewriter

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Well Done Louise Roberts

Not only has “Embrace Amidst Orange Blossoms” been released today 19th October 2016 by Luminosity Publishing, LLP, the book has also managed to score the Highest Historical Romance Rating and # 1 Best Seller on the ARe Distributor website.

https://www.allromanceebooks.com/product-embraceamidstorangeblossoms-2153229-162.html

best-selling-romance

Keep up the good work Louise… may there be many sales along the way.

RLB – Tomewriter

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Time for an update

Apologies to my followers for the long silence, but things in my personal life have been a bit unsettled of late and there hasn’t been much time, let alone enthusiasm to do any writing.

The reason for this has mostly been to the fact that my day job as a contractor at Kimberly Clark was coming to an end, and I had been frantically devoting as much time as possible in trying to find another job. Fortunately I have now scored a permanent role at Konica-Minolta so hopefully I won’t need to worry of an end date any time soon.

With the day job secured [a necessity as book royalties cannot be relied upon to make a living – unless of course you’re a famous author such as George RR Martin, Ken Follett, or J K Rowling to name just a few], I can now revert back to picking up where I had left off with my writing projects.

I have three books currently on the go; two novellas for Louise Roberts and a novel for me:

  • Passionate Harvest – Book 3 in The Sword and the Rose Series
  • Dragoon Serenade – Book 2 in the Romance in War Series
  • When Doves Weep – Book 1 [but is in fact the second book] in the Mark Lander Chronicles.

When I say that When Doves Weep is the second book it’s because after I wrote Out of the Darkness which is listed as Book 2 in the Mark Lander Chronicles I thought it would an idea to write a prequel to allow my readers to find out where Mark Lander, and Mark’s best friend Jim Saunders come from. The prequel also introduces the second of Mark’s closest friends, Chris Hardaker who will become a prominent character in the two subsequent proposed books in the series [Nightsafe – scheduled for 2016 and Guardian Angel – scheduled for 2017].

Having said that though, at present my creative juices appear to have dried up and I can’t seem to get into any of my works, apart from dabbling in a couple of hundred words here and there. Luckily, though, on the 21st of this month I shall be heading to Melbourne for the two-day 2015 Romance Writers of Australia Conference. I have enrolled to attend several workshops that I hope will kick-start my creativity again:

Saturday 22nd August

09.30 – 10.30                      How to Plot A Page Turner

11.00 – 12.00                      How Stories Work

12.00 – 13.00                      Scene Diagnosis

14.00 – 15.00                      Not another Sex Scene

Sunday 23rd August

11.00 – 12.00                      Deep Editing

12.00 – 13.00                      Media Boot camp

14.00 – 15.00                      Fact into Fiction

Somewhere in between the workshops I will also be pitching my novel Out of the Darkness to three publishers [put it this way, I have submitted my pitch appointments, I just now need to receive the designated time slots]. Even though this latest novel is written in my own name rather than Louise Roberts, and even though I have placed it into the genre of Crime Fiction, this book does contain romantic elements and as such I believe it could be included in the Romance Genre as well. I hope it will be well received – I have only had one book published this year [Letter from a Stranger] so it would be a great morale booster to get the opportunity to get another published in 2015. In truth however, even if I was lucky enough to score a contract for it, because of the long drawn out editing processes the book might not be released before 2016. Anyway… fingers crossed I say, one never knows how things turn out.

Regardless of what happens to Out of the Darkness, I am hopeful that the two romance novellas I am currently writing will have been picked up by a publisher or two by the end of this year which is when I am aiming to finish them both. Although there are no guarantees in life except perhaps taxation and death I am confident that whether they are published or not I will be moving on to starting the next two novellas planned for each of the series.

I have decided that the series will have no less than 4 books each; what happens after that will depend on how successful or unsuccessful they are. For now therefore the series will consist of:

Under the name: Robert L J Borg

The Mark Lander Chronicles

When Doves Weep – Book 1 [WIP]

Out of the Darkness – Book 2 [Completed]

Nightsafe – Book 3 [In Planning Stage]

Guardian Angel – Book 4 [In Planning Stage]

 

Under the pen name: Louise Roberts

https://louiserobertsromance.wordpress.com/

The Sword and the Rose Series

The Sword and the Rose – Book 1 [Published by Secret Cravings publishing – 2014]

Embrace Amidst Orange Blossoms – Book 2 [Published by Secret Cravings publishing – 2014]

Passionate Harvest – Book 3 [WIP]

Lady from Seville – Book 4 [In Planning Stage]

Romance in War Series

Letter from a Stranger – Book 1 [Published by Luminosity Publishing – 2015]

Dragoon Serenade – Book 2 [WIP]

Neptune’s Landing – Book 3 [In Planning Stage]

Warm Nights in Alex – Book 4 [In Planning Stage]

****

What happens after I complete these projects is anyone’s guess. My son Brad believes I should try something new, such as fantasy or science fiction – I’ve told him to write me a premise of a story and I’ll ghost write it for him, but to date he hasn’t come up with anything. I am tempted however to use him [or his name at least] and his faithful German shepherd as a crime fighting team of the 24th century in outer space – ha ha!!

As we authors always say – “don’t mess with a writer as you will never know what they might do to you in a story”.

Meanwhile however there are books to write so I had best get on with it… it’s no point keeping the ideas locked in my mind: I have to share them.

 

RLB – Tomewriter

 

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One story finishes and a new one begins…

With Affectionately Yours… finished I, or should I say Louise Roberts, now finds herself at a loose end. It’s not all done and dusted though as I shall be giving the manuscript to a few friends to have a read and give me their opinion . Then I will need to do some last-minute changes/edits before I venture in submitting it to potential publishers.

For the time being whilst I’m waiting for the verdicts to come back, I shall pick up where I left off with my own novel Out of the Darkness and see whether I can finish it off by early next year.

Meanwhile though, Louise Roberts is looking in starting another project. It will be the third book in The Sword and the Rose Series. I shall be aiming for another novella length book [between 20,000 to 30,000 words]. The book is to be named Passionate Harvest – take a look at the new page for the blurb. I will also be creating a page in Louise’s blog for it.

The tag line for it is:

A new beginning at the Villa Sant’ Angelo, Magdalena is attracted to the wine-master, Joquim. But will her domineering employer permit the relationship to blossom?

RLB – Tomewriter

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R O M A N C E always adds a sparkle to life…

2014 has started really well with two of my books being offered contracts by a publisher in the U.S.A.

In April 2014 Secret Cravings Publishing will be releasing a new title by Louise Roberts: the historical romance saga The Sword and the Rose and in June 2014 they will also be releasing by Louise Roberts: the historical romance novella Embrace Amidst Orange Blossoms – both e-books will be available on Amazon.

But wait there’s more… because in October 2014 The Sword and the Rose will also be published by Secret Cravings Publishing  in a print version.

So to celebrate R O M A N C E  during the entire month of February 2014 in recognition of all Romantics and Valentine’s Day, Louise Roberts will be selling her e-book Beneath Southern Stars at 50% off for your enjoyment….

Beneath Southern Stars

To take advantage of this offer, connect up to the following link: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/211334 and follow the prompts when you add the e-book to your cart and remembering to type in the coupon code: QG33U before completing the purchase.

Currently a fourth book is being written under the name Louise Roberts – this is a love story set during World War II.

RLB – Tomewriter

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Riding the Waves… #RWAus13

Not sure about “Riding” more like “Floating” and the “waves” seemed rather choppy when walking around this morning at around 5.30 Fremantle time. Whose idea was it to start on Cointreau Spitzer’s??

There was I thinking it was going to be a quiet evening not knowing anyone at the Romance Writers of Australia [RWA] Conference Cocktail Party last night [Friday 16th August]. I should have known, being out numbered, the female members of the RWA were not going to let someone sit in a corner getting inēbriātus all by himself.

I suppose what did not help was getting up at 2.45am yesterday morning to get ready to depart for the airport [my flight was at 7am]. Too early for breakfast I made do with a MacDonald’s egg & bacon muffin and a poor excuse for a coffee when I arrived at Terminal 2. The breakfast served by Virgin once we were airborne was a trifle better. By the time I arrived in Perth I was starving. The taxi driver, a nice chap, drove me to the hotel and gave me a breakdown of his life history. Very interesting… could be a book in it!!

Fremantle 001

Arriving at the hotel – The Esplanade by Rydges at around 11.00am the room wasn’t ready, no big deal. I made my way to the bar and had a nice cold beer and ordered a beef burger. It was delicious and it set me up for the rest of the day. By the time I had finished eating, the room was ready – quite pleasant, although the view leaves a lot to be desired: a nondescript street with a backpacker’s hotel and lots of trees.

After attempting to have a nana nap I gave up after a couple of hours at staring at the walls and decided on a little TV before getting ready for the Cocktail Party.

As I said before, where I thought I would be standing in a corner like a spare part, I was welcomed into the fold by some very charming people and made to feel I belonged. Copious amounts of red wine and rats on sticks also helped the evening along, and when it all “ended” at around 10.30pm a few of us decided it was too early and continued our delightful discussions at the Promenade Bar. As the night progressed, and the Cointreau Spitzer’s began, I started to being referred to by my pen name, which in a way seemed appropriate in the circumstances. It was also suggested that at the next conference [Sydney 2014] my name tag should be as “Louise Roberts” and not “Robert Borg”.

Saturday 17th August

I would have thought that after such a long and tiring day [PLUS all that booze last night] I would sleep forever – no such luck. Being still on Sydney time I was up at 5.30am. Having made myself a cuppa I started writing this blog, abandoning it after an hour so I could get ready for the day to start.

… And so it began: From around 8am right through to 4.30pm it was an intense day with a few well-placed breaks and lunch. Having had a large breakfast I opted for a very small lunch, so I am now enjoying a very nice chicken pizza courtesy of room service [it is 6.00pm and will need to think about getting ready in an hour or so for the Gala Awards evening at 8.30pm]. I was going to go out for dinner, but it’s raining and I didn’t bring a rain jacket or umbrella. No big deal. This is just as good, and at least I’m writing, which is quite apt when you think about it.

The conference began with a keynote address by the number 1 New York Times bestselling author, Julia Quinn. This was followed by an address made by the conference sponsors, Harlequin; and a panel discussion of the various paths open to authors to third-party publications. This was of particular interest to me as I am still on tenterhooks waiting to hear back for my submission of my historical saga with romantic interludes: The Sword and the Rose. When told that one can wait up to 90 days for an answer as priority is given to novels which have been submitted by agents, I can now understand why I am still waiting since submitting it in mid-May!! So fingers and toes remain crossed.

During the rest of the day I learnt of the importance of an Alpha Male: Hero or Hole and thought about my own Alpha male characters reflecting on their “hero” status and found at times that perhaps they sometimes “slipped” from Hero to Hole…

The presentation was hosted by Paula Roe [http://www.paularoe.com ] and Shannon Curtis [ http://www.shannoncurtis.com ] who gave a most informative and enjoyable session.

Later I listened to Julia Quinn give invaluable tips for effective dialogue for one’s characters, and the do’s and don’ts to watch out for.

Finally USA Today bestselling author Maisey Yates provided a workshop to improve ways of increasing productivity in writing novels. It made me shudder when she stated that writing a book in six weeks was too slow for her… 6 weeks is too slow?? Try 6+ months!!

I really must pull my finger out if I’m going to get my novella finished this year. As she said, I must stop making excuses for not getting the job done. I suppose if I take anything away with me from this conference it is Maisey’s sound advice of setting a daily word count goal to get passed the mental blocks, and switch the internet off!! I must admit the latter is my downfall; as when I switch on the computer the first thing I do is check my emails, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn; by then it’s either too late to start writing or I’m too exhausted as another day is over.

Time Check: 7.00pm. It’s time to sign off and start to get ready for this evening’s festivities; and to look forward to tomorrow…

RLB – Tomewriter

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