When I set out to write Waltzing with the Earl, I had no idea where it would take me. It started, as these things often do, with a ‘What if…?’
What if a young woman lost her place in the social hierarchy of Regency England?
What if, rather like Cinderella, she lived with relatives who treated her badly?
What if she’d already met a man… would he stand by her? Even if it was difficult?
Aristocratic women in 19th century England had few choices and limited control over certain aspects of their lives. Men controlled property, wealth and hard power. Many women had soft power – influence – within their homes and families, and used it to benefit themselves and those they loved.
Writers are cruel. We manipulate our heroes and heroines, give them challenges, heartbreak and despair. We hurt them, and sometimes kill those they love, so that they are tested.
Yet we care about them, too. We cry with them, feel their pain, hope that they will emerge victorious…
As I wrote Waltzing with the Earl, I walked my heroine’s journey beside her, with her. In a way, I became her. For me, the same thing happens on reading a good book. So I hope that, when Waltzing with the Earl is published, you will walk with her, and enjoy her story.