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Meet the Author – Vicki Beeby and her new book The Ops Room Girls

I’m thrilled to have Vicki Beeby stop by my blog today as she celebrates the publication of her wonderful new novel, The Ops Room Girls which was published by Canelo on 16th July. Grab a coffee and sit back to enjoy this post as Vicky talks to me about her writing life.

Author Vicki Beeby

What started your journey into the world of writing?

I’ve always known I wanted to write books one day, but I only knuckled down to writing novels about ten years ago. From my teens to my early thirties I wrote a daily journal, and I think that was a good introduction to the discipline of regular writing. In my twenties, I also started writing fan fiction, well before I knew fan fiction was actually a thing. I liked to write about minor characters and give them a story of their own. When I discovered internet sites where you could post fan fiction, I dared to upload a few stories and was encouraged by the feedback to keep going. After a while I wanted to create my own characters and worlds, so started writing original fiction. It still took a lot of perseverance to get my first publishing deal, but I don’t think I would have started if it hadn’t been for the encouragement I got from fellow fanfic authors.

What is it you most enjoy most about being an author?

I love the whole process of starting out with a spark of an idea and developing it into a complete story. At times the process can be painful, but nothing can beat the kick of holding a book in my hands, knowing that the words inside came from my own head.

Tell us about your latest book and why you chose to write it.

The Ops Room Girls is the first in a series called The Women’s Auxiliary Air Force. It follows the story of Evie Bishop, a working-class girl who joins the WAAF near the start of World War Two after having her hopes of an Oxford Scholarship dashed. She is posted to the operations room of an RAF fighter station where she befriends two other WAAFs – shy, awkward May and flirty, glamorous Jess. The book is set against the background of Dunkirk and the Battle of Britain and follows Evie, Jess, and May’s adventures as they embark upon romances and join the struggle to keep their pilots safe. 

 

I love watching old war films but have always been frustrated that the action mostly centres on men. You would occasionally see women in the background, but you never discovered what they actually did. In particular, I was curious about the women in some scenes in the Battle of Britain films, who could be seen pushing blocks around a chart on a large table. When I found out what their job involved, and the vital work they did during the Battle of Britain, I knew I wanted to tell their story.

Who are your top three favourite authors and why?

Rosemary Sutcliff Douglas Adams & Marion Keyes

Rosemary Sutcliff – I fell in love with history and historical novels thanks to her. Douglas Adams – I love his sense of humour and his way of looking at reality and twisting it. Marian Keyes – What can I say? She’s a goddess. I’m in awe of how she can write about dark stuff like addiction, grief and depression and still make her books funny and uplifting.

What are your writing plans for the next year?

I still have to write the third book in the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force series, so I’m looking forward to getting stuck into that. After that, I’d like to write another World War Two series, although I haven’t fixed on what to focus on. I’ve got a list of story ideas that came to me when researching the current series so I’ll read through them and see which ones spark more ideas.

How do you celebrate on publication day?

I’m not one for elaborate celebrations, but I do take time off work so I can enjoy the day properly. When my first three books were published—medieval romances under the pen name Tora Williams—I went out for breakfast with my mum to celebrate. With lockdown, celebrations will be even more low-key. I’m in a bubble with my mum, so I’m going to take a cake around to her house and she’s ordered a cream tea by post. I’m such a party animal!

 

It was such a pleasure to talk to Vicky and I am currently reading and loving The Ops Room Girls – watch out for my review soon. You can follow Vicky on the links below:

 

The Ops Room Girl links:

Amazon: Mybook.to/OpsRoomGirls

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/ebook/the-ops-room-girls

Google: http://books.google.com/books?vid=ISBN9781800320888

Apple: https://books.apple.com/book/the-ops-room-girls/id1509441974?app=itunes

Social media links:

Twitter: @VickiBeeby

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/VickiBeebyAuthor

 

 

BOOKS BY CAROLINE JAMES
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Would you like a Bertie Bear?

Its the first day of August and the summer is flying by. In my neck of the woods we seem to have had an awful lot of rain in-between hot and humid weather. I hope that you are all enjoying the varied days and life is good.

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This post is short and sweet and just to tell you that my lovely author friends over at Apricot Plots have lots of summer giveaways if you hop over to their Facebook page (or Twitter: @ApricotPlots)

summer giveaway

This week it is my turn and I am offering a beautiful Boomerville Bertie Bear*, complete with his very own canvas travelling bag and a signed copy of my novel The Best Boomerville Hotel.

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To enter, simply go to this link: APRICOT PLOTS  and leave your comment.

Good luck and as always – happy reading!

With love 

Caroline 

xx

*Competition closes on 4th August and is open internationally

Books by Caroline James

 

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June News, promo and win a Bertie Bear

Its newsletter time again folks and I hope that you’re all enjoying the summer.

TALKS

CAROLINE JAMES (PROMO SHOOT 26.06.2018)

 

I’ve been hosting talks over the last few weeks on subjects such as how to get your book written and whether to self-publish or go down the traditionally published route. These talks always generate a lot of questions and a lively debate. I thought I’d share with you how I became an author and you can read my story below.

 

PROMOTION

To celebrate summer and holiday why not treat yourself to a fictional stay at The Best Boomerville Hotel this weekend? My lovely publishers are offering a discounted price of only 99p / 99c and you can download on all platforms including Amazon, Kobo & Apple. This book is a best-seller in the UK Amazon charts and has received fabulous reviews. The offer ends at midnight on 10th June so grab your copy now:

The Best Boomerville Hotel

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COMPETITION

Who wants to win a Bertie Bear? Bertie, the lovely teddy bear from The Best Boomerville Hotel is so cute. He stands at 12” tall and comes with his very own canvas travelling bag. When I give my talks, Bertie comes too and everyone always wants to take a Bertie home with them. I’m offering you, my lovely subscribers the opportunity to WIN your very own Bertie.

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Simply answer the following question:

Where is Bertie in this picture? There is a clue in the picture.

Email your answer to caroline@carolinejamesauthor.co.uk and you will be entered into the draw and the winner announced on 30th June. I’ll also sign a paperback copy of The Best Boomerville Hotel and add this to the prize. Good Luck!!

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If you want to buy a Bertie Bear, click this link: BERTIE BEAR

HOW I BECAME AN AUTHOR

I grew up in a small town in Cheshire, in England and wanted to write from a very early age, but never thought that I was good enough. I went to an all girl’s Grammar school and hated it and a few weeks short of my sixteenth birthday, much to my parents’ horror, I left school, and also home. I travelled to Cornwall on the south-west coast of England and looked for work, doing anything from pot-washing to waitressing. In that time, I realised that I loved the hospitality industry and if I couldn’t write, I would work hard and one day have my own business. Fast forward several years and I achieved that dream. After catering college and working for a large hotel group in London and abroad, I eventually owned a pub and then a country house hotel.

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When I sold the hotel, I became an agent representing celebrity chefs. It was a fabulous career but still I wanted to write and decided that I wouldn’t die wondering and pinned my bum to a chair to write my first book. Coffee Tea the Gypsy & Me was born. Four more books have followed and my years in the hospitality industry provide a revolving door of inspiration for characters and stories. My novels are mostly based in that environment. Two of the titles are current Amazon best-sellers and my dream of writing full-time has been achieved.

I am currently writing a follow-up to The Best Boomerville Hotel for my publisher, Ruby Fiction. I am a speaker too and give talks on various subjects including entertaining speeches for large events, such as a guest speaker on cruise ships and at various literature festivals. I write food related articles for magazines and promote my work through social media and my website.

My advice for anyone wishing to write is, just get on with it. Don’t waste years wondering. Glue your rear to a chair and get going, write and write and write – no matter what. You will find your muse when you least expect it.

I started playing golf this month and seem to have got ‘the bug’. The good thing is that you can learn and play this game at any age and it is great exercise. I’ve also been trying lots of new recipes, this photo is of the best chocolate cake I have ever made – if you want the recipe click here: Best Ever Chocolate Fudge Cake.

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Have a wonderful June everyone, thanks for subscribing to this newsletter and feel free to contact me at any time if you have any writing related questions.

Happy reading,

with love

Caroline x

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www.carolinejamesauthor.co.uk

Twitter: @CarolineJames12

Facebook: Caroline James Author   Instagram: Caroline James Author

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January News – Scotland, Scones, Books and Bertie…

Happy New Year lovely readers and followers. I hope that the start of 2019 brings lots of love, good health and happiness your way and that this will be a very special year for all.

SCOTLAND

2019 began for me with family celebrations in beautiful Scotland with a party on New Year’s Eve in Inverness, followed by walks beside the famous Loch – Loch Ness. We didn’t catch sight of the monster but a great time was had by all.

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BEAUTIFUL INVERNESS

BOOK SIGNINGS

The Best Boomerville Hotel went on tour with signings in Waterstones and these pictures  show me at Waterstones Book Store in Carlisle, where I had a fabulous day meeting some lovely readers. Thanks to everyone who bought a book and had a chat.

BOOKS

The Best Boomerville Hotel is currently on a promotion and you can download the novel for only 99p/c on all ereader platforms. Here is the link to Amazon:

The Best Boomerville Hotel

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The Best Boomerville Hotel ebook is on promo – only 99p/c in January!

WIN A BERTIE BEAR!

I’m giving away a fabulous gift this month. Would you like to own your very own Boomerville Bertie Bear? Bertie comes in his very own travelling bag and will make a faithful companion. To be in with a chance of wining, just tell me the name of the chef in Jungle Rock (mentioned in this blog post) and email it to: caroline@carolinejamesauthor.co.uk  The winner will be chosen at the end of January and announced in my February newsletter.

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Win a Boomerville Bertie Bear!

SCONES

As the weather gets colder I had a Sunday afternoon snuggled up with a good book and a plate of scones. I love this recipe, it makes a really light and fluffy scone. If anyone wants to know how to make them, just drop me an email: caroline@carolnejamesauthor.co.uk

 

CRUISING

2019 will see me setting sail as a guest speaker at sea. Do you enjoy cruising? if so, I’d love to hear from you. Let me know what you enjoy about the talks on the cruises you’ve experienced and what you’d like to hear on your next cruise.

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Caroline is cruising in 2019 as a guest speaker

FREE BOOK & PROMO

FREE! Grab a copy of my novella, JUNGLE ROCK

Available until 21st January 2019 as a ebook download on Amazon worldwide.

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It is really great to see my debut novel, Coffee Tea the Gypsy & Me, still gets great reviews.

This one is from ‘Stephanie’ on Goodreads….

“I’ve had this sitting on my Kindle for far too long. My first read from Caroline James was “The Best Boomerville Hotel”. A fabulous page turner, it made me laugh out loud and cry in equal measure, but with “Coffee Tea the Gypsy & Me” we meet the main characters Jo and Hattie as they both start new chapters in their lives after both husbands ran off with younger models. We see the trials, tribulations and not to mention the romance. It is a true page turner which is why it was read in 3 days. The characters are fun, firey and very likeable. Although set in the 1980’s the story line is so true of today’s economic situation that you’d be had pushed to believe it wasn’t happening right now. It gave me plenty of laughs, even shed a tear but kept me reading until I was done, already starting thinking about the next one.”

Thanks SO much lovely Stephanie, for taking the time to post a review. Coffee Tea The Gypsy & Me is reduced at the moment to £1.99/$1.99 and you can download it here:

Coffee Tea The Gypsy & Me

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COFFEE TEA THE GYPSY & ME ONLY £1.99/$1.99C

That’s about it for January. I hope that you have a cracking month and I look forward to catching up again soon.

Happy reading everyone!

With Love

Caroline 

xxx

PS: All my books are available to read FREE on Amazon Prime…

CAROLINE JAMES BOOKS

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Apricot Plots is born…

I’m so excited to share the news about Apricot Plots. In the summer, at the Romantic Novelist’s conference, I chatted with fellow authors Morton S Gray, Angela Barton and Carol Thomas. Like-minded, we thought it would be good to form a group as a place for discussion and motivation, both for ourselves as writers and the wonderful readers who follow us.

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Apricot Plots was born.

Three more authors have joined and they are, Jane Cable, Mariam Kobras and Tora Williams.

As writers, our general theme is romance but we all branch off into comedy, crime, mystery and history and appeal to many readers. Apricot Plots will highlight our news, offers, competitions and give-a-ways and we hope, become a place for those interested in reading and writing to engage and enjoy our work.

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Why not click through and say hello…

Apricot Plots Facebook

Apricot Plots Twitter 

#Apricot Plots

Happy reading and writing everyone,

Caroline xx