It is my absolute pleasure to shine the spotlight on contemporary romance novelist, Sarah Belle. Sarah is a mother to four young boys and writes Romantic Comedy, with a dash of magic (self-termed Romagic Comedy), in her spare time. Sarah’s latest book Hindsight is on sale now (link below). She lives on the beautiful Queensland coast (Australia) with her husband and children and as well as being a mother, wife and writer, she supports Cody’s Angel Heart Foundation, a charity that helps to provide financial funeral assistance to parents of children who suffered from a Congenital Heart Defect. They do a brilliant job and help families in times of utter emotional devastation. Quite an amazing person!
Welcome Sarah – let’s dig deeper and find out your darker secrets!
Whether or not you loved or hated it, is there a book that has grabbed you by the throat and changed the way you write?
Oooh, good question. I would have to say The Help by Kathryn Stockett, because she created characters who are still with me – I missed them after finishing the book. Her story was confronting and touching; I cried more than once and I am not a crier! Loved it. It provided great inspiration for writing Hindsight.
What made you choose the genre/genres you write?
They say ‘write what you know’ and Romagic Comedy (romantic comedy with a dash of magic) seemed like a natural choice – I rely on my sense of humour a lot, and love to have a laugh when I escape into the world of books. I also love thrillers and crime, and historicals, but haven’t ventured there…yet!
Have you ever written a book you didn’t like? Why didn’t you like it? (Don’t have to name it)
I’m a bit new at this writing caper, so have only written 3 so far, but I am struggling with a novella I wrote. Parts of it are good and I sort of like the characters, but they are a bit boring so there’s still loads of work to do. There’s not enough sexual tension between the leads and not enough conflict either. I am also not sure that novellas are quite my thing – it’s a different skill set to be able to tell a story with limited words.
JK Rowling spoke about the moment Harry Potter took form in her mind. But she had no pen and had to sit in a train for four hours so she sat and stared and let the ideas tumble around in her thoughts. Do you have a place where you sit and stare, letting the subconscious formulate your story?
I get some great ideas when I’m doing Bikram Yoga, but it’s in a 40 deg room and there is no pen and paper in there! After Yoga, my mind flows more freely, so that would be my version of sitting and staring.
Yoga sounds a wonderful way to free the mind and allow your creativity to flow, Sarah.
Do you write your first draft with your head or your heart?
Oooh, that’s a hard one but I’d have to say with my head. I’m a plotter so I determine where my story is going first, then I go back and layer the heart stuff. I did lots of layering for Hindsight. It’s more of an organic feel to write with the heart.
How do you choose your book dedications?
I’ve only done one, and that was a no brainer. My hubby deserved it because of his unwavering support and encouragement. But the next one has me stumped!
Tell me about your next book – a short excerpt if you want to share.
My work in progress is about Lou Mercer, who casts a spell on her ex-boyfriend, Hunter Wincott, to make him forget her, because of a tangled history between him and her new fiancé, Aiden. However, the spell goes horribly wrong and she’s left with a life she doesn’t recognise at all – and has lost Aidan in the process! She only has one week to fix everything and win him back.
In this scene, Lou has approached Hunter at his hotel to ask if he would keep their relationship, eleven years ago, a secret, because she is worried that Aiden will leave her if he finds out she once dated his nemesis. It’s WIP name is ‘Déjà Vu Lou’.
Hunter’s aftershave, a citrus blend with sandalwood undertones, takes me back to our time together, when he was every girl’s ultimate dream boyfriend; passionate, charming, lethal in bed and very take charge- dominant, but in a sexy kind of way. His star was on the rise when we met, after he attended Oxford.
My stomach lurches upwards and I suddenly stop, overtaken by dizziness and confusion. What the hell am I doing? This is a ridiculous idea. Hunter probably wouldn’t even remember me – there were so many women during our time together, I can only imagine how many have followed. It’s absurd to think that he will help me now.
“Yes sir, I will have that waiting for you tomorrow morning on your way out,” says the Concierge.
“Good, and make sure it’s the top of the range, will you?” he says.
Only the best for Hunter Wincott. Just like old times.
My nerves get the better of me and I turn to walk away. This was a stupid idea. Aiden needs to know the truth, no matter the cost. Honesty has to be the best way to go.
My mobile throws itself out of my sweaty hand and drops to the floor. None of my fingers seem to be working, my nerves are shot and my eyes blurry with tears as I bend down to pick it up.
The voice is unmistakeable, although the north London accent has thickened since our last conversation over eleven years ago.
“Lou, is that you?” he asks again.
I look at the expensive men’s shoes in front of me, all the way up the exquisite woollen suit, to the incredibly handsome face at the top. Those sapphire eyes, thick black glossy lashes and slightly olive complexion. He’s still a sexpot.
I am fearless, I am fearless, I am fearless.
He crouches down on his haunches and places one strong, warm hand on my elbow. A shiver flashes through my body as though he is a live charge plugged into me. With the other hand he picks up the phone.
“Is this yours?” he smiles. It is the same smile that seduced me all those years ago. It is probably the same smile that seduces countless other women as well. When you’re on a good thing…
“Ahhh, ummm…yes. Thank you, Hunter,” I stammer. “What a coincidence!” My smile feels lopsided, and a manufactured giggle catches in my throat.
He helps me back up to a standing position and leaves his hand on my elbow, his current still passing through my body.
A huge void has developed between my brain and mouth. All I can do is stare and feel myself overheat, almost forgetting the reason for my journey here.
His eyes run all over my body as he puts the other hand on my arm and looks at me as though my body is a fine piece of artwork he is thinking of acquiring, just trying to figure out which room it would look best in. He always said I was perfect in every room of his flat, as was he, except for the cheating thing, that is, but it’s easy to forget betrayal in the presence of this man.
“Lou,” he says in the deep voice that is an aphrodisiac in itself. “You look good enough to eat…slowly.”
Sarah is offering one reader an e-copy Giveaway of her current novel, Hindsight, from Amazon or iTunes if you can answer the following question:
If you could time travel to any time when would it be and why?
Such a pleasure to have you here today, Sarah and good luck with both Hindsight and your very intriguing new book.
Find out more about Sarah Belle at: