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Ahead of her hot new release, The Captain’s Christmas Bride, we caught up with Regency author Annie Burrows to find out how she got her Mills and Boon break, and also why she doesn’t have to walk imaginary dogs anymore....
Annie’s been writing Regency romances for Mills & Boon since 2007. When asked why she started writing, Annie tells us she had a new surge of determination after learning her daughter wanted to go to university. She wanted to be able to pay for it and “why not write and sell a book?”
Sounds like a dream for most people, but Annie isn’t most people. She got to work, and furious ambition to master her craft led her to sign up for a Writer’s Bureau course. “I didn’t want to do the articles they made us do, I knew I wanted to write stories, so I fast forwarded to the stuff about structure and characters and then I heard that if you sent your work to Mills and Boon they were guaranteed to read it.”
After everything she’d learnt, Annie was further inspired by this news and set about researching genre fiction. She went to second-hand book shops and raided the local library and fell in love. “It felt like I discovered my niche!”
At the time she wasn’t sure though, whether Modern or Historical was her preferred genre so she simply wrote both. “I’d write one, send it off, and then while I was waiting for a rejection I’d write another,” she jokes.
So how does Annie manage her research? When you’re writing about such specifics and time periods, it’s imperative to research. “I subscribe to the Jane Austin magazine and I’m always reading biographies,” she says. “But sometimes I start writing about something I think I know all about, and realise I don’t – like how long would a coach take to get from Yorkshire to London?”
Thank goodness for Google!
If she could see one of her books made into a movie, Annie would choose Lord Havelock's List (pure passion!), or her newest, The Captain’s Christmas Bride and have Michael Fasbender as the captain. “Or Jamie from Outlander,” she adds with a grin. “But I like Michael Fasbender, with a Scottish accent!”
So how does Annie relax and not get completely lost in her books? She borrows her daughter’s dog! “He’s a Cockerpoo, a mix between a very smart Poodle and a hyperactive Cocker Spaniel. I have him once a week. I also enjoy meeting other authors at AMBA events and I blog every month for NovelistasInk – a group of ladies who meet regularly to discuss all things writerly.”
Sound like a busy life for Annie Burrows. Thanks for talking to us!
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