Thursday, 22 March 2012

Miss Shaw and the Doctor

Today I'm pleased to welcome my good friend Fenella Miller to the blog. She's talking about her latest regency romance, Miss Shaw and the Doctor. Tell us something about yourself please, Fenella.
I am an historical fiction writer with more than 30 titles to my name.  So far all my published books have been Regency romantic adventures, but I also write in the Victorian and World War II eras.
I am married and have two adult children and two grandchildren.  I live in a large riverside village in Essex to which I moved six weeks ago.  We share our house with an arthritic, 14-year-old border collie.
I was a teacher for 25 years but have also been a restaurateur and hotelier.  However, being a writer is my dream occupation.  It's what I was born to do.

What are your favorite novels?
Pride and Prejudice - but I have read and reread all of Jane Austen's books and like them all.
I love most of Bernard Cornwall's books, especially the Richard Sharpe series.
I read thrillers as well as historical.  Michael Connelly and Lee Child are books I have to buy in hardback.
I loved the first book in the Outlander series by Diane Gabaldon.

What can’t you live without?
Chocolate. Sleep. Writing.

What  characteristics should a hero have?
He should be is  intelligent, brave, handsome, resourceful and kind to children and animals.  What more could you want in a man?

What are you working on now?
I'm busy doing the final tweaks and synopsis for a YA urban fantasy. Then I have to do bit more editing on a full length Regency so I can send that off as well.

What do you watch on TV?
Blue Bloods, Hawaii 5 0, Ringer, Glee, Doctors, NCIS 9 –but my favourite is Grey’s Anatomy.
What is your film of preference?
I prefer musicals to anything - especially the old ones with Gene Kelly, Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. I like family films and thrillers as long as they aren’t too gory.

Do you listen to Music when you write, if so what?
No – never listen to music.

What is your favorite quote?
Life is not a rehearsal.

If you could live anywhere in the world where would it be and why?
I’d love to have moved to rural France but am now happy where I am.

Are you a plotter or a pantser?
A bit of both.  I spend a lot of time working out the story in my head before I start, know the beginning and the end and let the characters tell the story in the middle.
With a long book –such as Under a Shadow – which is 120K –I did plan the story far more carefully.
With the fantasy I’ve had to spend a lot of time writing a rule book for the fantasy world.

What is your biggest distraction when it comes to writing?
Cricket.  A peculiar English game not played in the States but I watch everything the English team play in, even getting up in the middle of the night to watch when they're playing in Australia.

Miss Shaw & The Doctor is out with Aurora/Musa on 23rd March 2012. Here is an extract -hope you enjoy it enough to pop over and buy it.
Ebook Price: $4.99
Ebook ISBN13: 978-1-61937-260-3
 At the sound of rapidly approaching hooves Sarah pushed herself upright. How kind of the squire to send someone out to look for her. She had fully expected to wait until the morning to be collected. She picked up her valise and withdrew her handkerchief from her reticule to wipe some of the grime from her hands.
The gig, travelling at a spanking trot, showed no sign of pulling up. The driver could not have seen her. Leaning forward, she waved her handkerchief furiously. The beast shied and the vehicle slewed sideways. The unfortunate driver slipped from his perch and vanished into the hedge.
“Oh, my goodness! What have I done?”
The horse, having recovered from its fright, now waited a few yards away as if nothing untoward had happened. The outline of the gig was clearly discernible in the welcome light of the lanterns. It appeared undamaged–indeed not even the traces were tangled. Only the driver had suffered a mishap. She was most concerned about him.
The head and shoulders of the missing man emerged through a gap in the hedge. He was covered in twigs, his hair awry, and his smart topcoat sadly mired. She was relieved to see he had not injured himself. Apparently, the hedge had made a soft landing.
This was no servant – oh, dear! She had made a grave error of judgement and would never have attempted to wave down the gig if she’s realised. The gentleman did not look at all pleased to see her. In fact he looked furious.
“I do beg your pardon,” she said. “I thought you were a servant from the manor come to collect me.”
He drew himself up to his full height, which must be two yards in his stocking feet. Every inch quivered with rage. “Are you mad? Only an imbecile would wave her handkerchief at a horse as you did. You are lucky we were not killed by your stupidity.”
Sarah bristled. How could she have known the silly animal would tip its master over the hedge? She had already apologised. There was no need for him to be so unpleasant.
“If I had not done so, you might not have seen me. As a gentleman, I’m sure you would not wish me to be marooned here on my own for the rest of the night.”
She risked moving closer and curtsied politely. “I am Miss Sarah Shaw, the new governess for Lady Fenwick. I have been sitting here for over two hours.”
“Dr. Adam Moorcroft.” He barely nodded.
“I should be most grateful if you would assist me, Dr. Moorcroft.”
“I suppose I shall have to give you a lift as I am going to the manor myself.” He viewed her large trunk with disfavour. “That will have to remain where it is until tomorrow. Bring your valise. Let us hope, Miss Shaw, that my horse is not lame after your foolishness.”
“All that I possess is in that trunk. If you will not put it in your vehicle, then I shall remain behind with it. Please, do not let me delay you. No doubt you are on your way to deliver Lady Fenwick’s child.”


  1. I love Miss Shaw's spunk! She'll tame the snooty doctor in no time. Now, I have to buy the book to learn just how she does it.:)

  2. Loved your line, "Life is not a rehearsal". You're my kind of person.

  3. Great interview, Fenella! BTW - For the three things I couldn't live without I'd choose: Scotch. Writing. Reading.

  4. I read today that chocolate shrinks your clothes -feel so much better now. Thanks for dropping in and hope you enjoy the book.