Get Some “Manspiration”

Brrrr… I don’t know about you, but it is so cold here where I live! At night I sit in front of the fireplace, curled up with a good book (or my laptop if I have more writing to do!) and picture myself lying on the beach somewhere. How about you, what is your weather like? Are you escaping it to go on a warm holiday? We just booked a vacation for April and I can’t wait!

Many of you have already read Once Upon a Duke’s Dream, which I released in November, but it seems to be resurging as a fan favorite! If you haven’t read it, it is a story of an evil stepbrother, espionage, and, of course, love. It currently has a 4.7 rating out of 5 on Amazon. “The characters are well written and they pull you into the story. This book kept me turning the pages to find out what happened and will keep your interest until the end!” is just one example of a review.

I would also suggest you read it to get excited about my next release -- we are a few weeks away, but I’d like to introduce you to a little “manspiration,” as a few of my author friends call it. When writing, we often model our characters, particularly our heroes, off of men we know, either in our lives or who we see on the big screen. I have done this before for my novels, but this time, I am so excited because my hero is modeled off of none other than Chris Hemsworth, who I am secretly in love with. I’ve included one of my fav pics of him, acting in the role of Alastair Finchley, who you will meet in Once Upon a Duke’s Dream. I hope you enjoy :)

And don’t forget! The Facebook contest for a $15 Amazon gift card is still ongoing. Head on over to my page to enter.

With love,

Ellie

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I hope everyone is enjoying Hearts of Trust! What do you think about Sophie and Benjamin?

Could you use a $15 Amazon gift card? If so, I can provide you with an easy way to do so! You have to do just three things: 1) Like my Facebook page (if you don’t already) 2) Like my post about the Hearts of Trust launch 3) Either share the post, or tag a friend in the comments. Easy! One winner will be randomly selected on February 3rd.

If you’re interested in joining our new private Facebook group, it will be open at the beginning of February! I will provide more details later.

After the rush of the holidays, I am getting back to work and am working hard on the next Happily Ever After book! Our hero and heroine are two characters you have previously met in the series, although the book will also be possible to read as a standalone. We’re still a ways away from launch date (it doesn’t have a title quite yet!), but who do you think it might be??

With love,

Ellie

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Coming in 2018!

I hope everyone had an absolutely wonderful Christmas!

 As a post-Christmas present to you, The Duke She Wished For is free, today only! If you haven’t read it, download your copy today on Amazon.

 Thank you for making 2017 such a wonderful year. You have been so wonderful to me, and I appreciate all of your support.

 I am so excited for all that is waiting for us in 2018. There will be more giveaways, more contests, more book fairs, and much more action on social media! I will be creating more blogs, doing some live videos, and much more. I might even find a day to have my hair and makeup done for a professional author photo!

 For those of you on Facebook, there are a couple of new things happening. First, there will be a giveaway on my Facebook page every month. All you will have to do is like the page, and then like and share a book launch post each month to be entered into a draw for an Amazon gift card.

 In addition, we are creating a Facebook group (in addition to the page), for all of you! It is a place we can talk about the characters, the books, what’s coming up, and you can provide me feedback and answer questions for me. I will tell you more about it soon.

 First on the agenda for the new year? Hearts of Truth, the third book in the Searching Hearts series! Benjamin Harrington is a rake and a wastral, until he is sent to one of his father’s country homes, where a pretty little maid hiding secrets captures his attentions. It will be out January 2nd!

 If you enjoyed any of my books and haven’t had a chance to review, I would so appreciate you doing so on Amazon. The links to all the books are below.

 Is there anything else you would like to see from me in the coming year?

 With love,

 Ellie

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Regency Christmas Traditions

Can you tell I love Christmas?

Only a few more weeks, so bear with me! I drive my husband crazy with all of my Christmas traditions, but it’s only once a year :)

Today I wanted to talk about a few Regency-era Christmas traditions, some of which remain until today. Many of our Christmas traditions actually originated in the Victorian era. In the Regency era, which technically covers the period of 1811-1820 (although many historical romance novels take place within a few years on either side), Christmastide was celebrated as the time between Christmas Eve and Twelfth Night.

If you read many Regency Christmas books, you will likely find mistletoe often plays a role, and for good reason, as it was quite popular during the era. There were no Christmas trees at this point in time -- these came in the Victorian era -- however, the Yule log and Christmas candle were lit during the season. Greenery was common throughout the home, particularly rosemary, bay, holly and laurel.

No matter the traditions, the spirit of the season has remained unchanged from this time. What was celebrated in this era, in addition to the religious festival, was a good meal with friends and family, and charity to the poor.

I hope the spirit of Christmas remains alive and well in your home! Head on over to my Facebook page to discuss your favorite Christmas traditions.

Next week on Boxing Day we will unwrap the latest cover of my next book in the Searching Hearts series. Catch up with Quest of Honor and Clue of Affection -- the links are at the bottom. Until then, I would like to wish each and every one of you a very Merry Christmas!

With love,

Ellie

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Wonder Women

This weekend I took a break from cheesy Christmas movies and watched Wonder Woman with Gal Gadot. I know, it’s been out forever, but I don’t seem to find much time to watch movies -- too many books to read!

I love a strong female protagonist and it got me thinking of my own heroines. The case can be made -- and often is -- that the typical Regency woman didn’t show a lot of strength. However, my characters aren’t necessarily the norm. They are woman who may have stood out, and gone above and beyond what is expected of them.

Some of my heroines are outwardly strong and powerful -- like Eleanor in Quest of Honor. Others, like Isabel in Once Upon a Duke’s Dream, have an inner strength that set them apart. I’d love to know your favorite female in character, in one of my books or another you’ve read. Email me back or head on over to my facebook page, where I’ve noted who mine are!

With love,

Ellie

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What’s your favorite Christmas Romance?

As Christmas approaches, do you read holiday-themed romances, or do you prefer a break from all of the Christmas spirit? I do a bit of both. I just finished reading a Christmas Regency Anthology, and am now onto a non-holiday book before I’ll return to the holiday stories. For those of you that love reading Christmas romance, there are some suggestions for you. I love sharing with you reads by other authors, as well as giveaways! At the bottom of this newsletter you will find four holiday group giveaways. I hope you click through and find your next great read. And if you haven't read it yet, Someday Her Duke Will Come also takes place during the holiday season. 

I would love to know what your favorite Christmas romance is! Head on over to my facebook page, and let me know. The question is in the latest post.

Are you enjoying Once Upon a Duke’s Dream? I would love to hear what you think of it! I always appreciate reviews on Amazon or Goodreads, or even a note back to let me know your thoughts. In the meantime I am hard at work on my next novel for you -- stay tuned!

Did you know about the many different ways you can follow me? Depending on your favorite platform, you can find me on many different types of social media, as well as book-focused platforms, such as Bookbub, Goodreads, and Amazon of course. Check out the links below!

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Clue of Affection is now available!

Clue of Affection, my new release and the latest in the Searching Hearts series, is now available!

It's currently only $0.99 on Amazon (always free in Kindle Unlimited!) so now is the time to pick up your next read.

I so hope you enjoy the story of Violet & Joshua. Violet is the sister of Thomas, who you met in Quest of Honor, but this is a standalone novel, and can be read without reading the first book in the series.

It has already received many five-star reviews and I want to thank all my readers for your support. I couldn't do it without you!

Have a wonderful week 

With love,

Ellie

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An excerpt from Clue of Affection

Today, I have a very special treat for you! As you know, I have been busy writing the next book in my Searching Hearts series. I have fallen in love with the hero myself, and I wanted to share with you an excerpt from the book. I hope you love this sneak peek and look forward to the book's release next week!

While this story can certainly be read as a standalone, if you'd like to catch up on the Harrington family, the first book, Quest of Honor, is available on Amazon for 99 cents or in Kindle Unlimited.

Without further ado...

~~~~~

Then, entirely unexpectedly, the Earl turned around, wrapped both arms around her waist and pressed her back against the side of the gazebo, his eyes catching the moonlight as he looked down at her. Violet stared up at him, her hands flat against his chest, seeing his face for the first time. Briefly, she noted eyes the color of cocoa, and a strong jaw with a hint of stubble under an aquiline nose. However, she did not have much longer to contemplate his face any further for, without warning, he lowered his head and kissed her soundly.

Violet did not know what to do or how to respond, remaining entirely frozen despite the Earl's warm lips on hers. He was urging her to respond in his own way, his hands pressing against her back gently. Violet could not understand what he was doing, struggling to think clearly as his kiss intensified.

Then, slowly she began to feel a most unexpected sensation. It was a gradual, unfurling warmth that started in the pit of her stomach and began to spread itself all through her, right to the very tips of her fingers. She discovered that her hands had made their way around his neck, and she threaded them into his hair as he angled his head to deepen the kiss. Whatever it was he was intending by this, Violet was already quite lost in all that it was bringing to her.

She did not know how long he kissed her for, her eyes remaining closed when he finally lifted his head.

"You are quite lovely," he murmured, capturing her chin in his hand. "Although I should apologize for my lack of propriety."

With love,

Ellie

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Manspiration!

Manspiration - long form.jpg

Ah, the men of historical romance. I believe this is one of the reasons we enjoy reading this genre so much. We love the gentlemen of the Regency era, the strong Highlanders of Scotland in days gone by, and the rakes, rogues and charmers of every other historical romance genre in between.

The first thing I do when I sit down to write a new story is get to know my characters. Sometimes they are secondary characters from a previous book who I have come to love enough for them to deserve their own story. Other times, the characters have been walking around in my mind for some time, and now are developed enough to emerge onto the page.

Historical romance is an interesting genre. We love certain aspects of times gone by, but there are also modern expectations we as readers bring to the story.  For example, we love the chivalry of an English gentleman in the 1800s, but we would be turned off if he was high-handed to a woman, or by the way he might have treated a person from a lower class. As authors, we typically get around this by providing reasons why our hero may not act like the norm of the time.

With that being said, readers are perfectly fine with their characters acting outside of their social constraints, as long as there is a valid reason they are doing so. Within the upper classes in the Regency and Victorian eras, many marriages were arranged and stayed a loveless marriage -- not at all like those portrayed in our romance novels, in which all, no matter where a story begins, it turns into a marriage of love and fidelity. What is important is that the historical facts are correct.

If you’ve read my books, you’ll know that I love a powerful female lead -- an intelligent woman who knows her mind. Because of that, her hero needs to be able to handle her and love her for who she is. He needs to be strong, yet sensitive. He needs to have a charged physical presence, and yet also be able to reach deep into himself to find emotion for his heroine.

The wonderful thing is that there are many modern-day heroes to inspire us who exemplify what we love about our historical men. Whether we find these traits within our own husbands and friends, other books, or in the characters of public figures and those they may portray on the big and small screens, inspiration is all around us.

In my most recent book, Someday Her Duke Will Come, Alexander is a character with a strong presence. We met him in The Duke She Wished For, and we knew he was a light-hearted, fun-loving rake -- or so we thought. Physically he was blond, with handsome features -- the type of man we would see today modeling Abercrombie and Fitch.

Immediately my mind jumped to Chris Hemsworth because…. Well, when I think of a good-looking sexy man, my mind usually jumps to Chris Hemsworth. Or Henry Cavill. Superman anyone? However Alexander’s personality was more Chris Pratt, with flirtatious remarks and witty one-liners. I’m not talking the alien-fighting Guardian of the Galaxy Chris Pratt, but as a clean-cut Chris Pratt from the pages of GQ. And thus Alexander's inspiration came to be.

I love the idea of a "manspiration" pinterest board, as favored by other authors on this blog hop. It is something that I am now beginning as I look to my next hero, who will be featured in the second book of the Searching Hearts series. (This research is sooo hard...) To give you an exclusive peek into the story, he’s an earl, but of course an earl outside the norm, who would like more out of life than catering to what society wants from him. Unlike the blond Alexander, our earl is dark and handsome -- not pretty handsome, but in a quirky, sensual way. Orlando Bloom anyone?

I hope you enjoyed wandering through my mind’s inspirations. Now time for our giveaway! It is open until October 24th. You can win a free copy of my latest book, Someday Her Duke Will Come, and meet Alexander yourself! If you win and have already read it, I would be happy to provide you with my next upcoming book instead. All you have to do is:

1 - Comment below about thoughts on this blog post or about your perfect man -- is there an actor you love? Qualities you look for?

2 - Check out the blogs of three other authors and follow their ways to enter. The next stop on the blog tour is Kate Bateman: http://www.kcbateman.com/manspiration-blog-hop-2/

3 - The winner will receive four e-books! Check them all out here:

 

 

 

With Love

Today, in a time where tragedy continues to strike around the world, I want to send you love. The only way to conquer hate is if we band together in peace, love, and goodness. 

I always sign my messages "With Love," and I truly mean that.

As romance authors, I know we all feel very much the same when we say our goal is to provide light, love, and happiness through the characters we create and the worlds they live in.

I hope Someday Her Duke Will Come did that for you, and that you enjoyed the story of Tillie and Alexander.

I am busy working on the next book in the Searching Hearts series. I am absolutely loving writing this story and I can't wait to share it with you.

With love,

Ellie

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Someday Her Duke Will Come is Here!

Someday Her Duke Will Come, my new release and the latest Happily Ever After story, is now available!

It's currently only $0.99 on Amazon (always free in Kindle Unlimited!) so now is the time to pick up your next read.

I so hope you enjoy the story of Tillie and Alexander. You met them in The Duke She Wished For, but this is a standalone novel, and can be read without reading the first book in the series.

It will put you in the holiday spirit, and hopefully leave you uplifted with its lovely story.

It has already received many five-star reviews and I want to thank all my readers for your support. I couldn't do it without you!

Have a wonderful week. 

With love,

Ellie

Read the full newsletter here: http://preview.mailerlite.com/w3l7n