Blogoversary Day 1: Kate Walker

There is a contest at the end of Kate’s post.  So, keep on reading.

Three Years on – What’s New?

I’m so delighted – and honoured to be invited back to help Jen and Romancing the Book celebrate their 3rd anniversary. Though I really can’t believe that it’s three years since I first contacted Jen and offered to give her an interview when she set up this web site. Back in 2008 I was just celebrating the fact that my 50th title – The Sicillian’s Red-Hot Revenge – had been published and I was looking forward to the appearance of my newest title Spanish Billionaire, Innocent Wife, in the shops.

And now three years later, I’m just working on revisions for my 60th title and with my 59th coming out in September. That’s the great thing about writing romance – there is always a new book to look forward to, a new book to work on and a new book to plan!

Three years – it seems to have gone by in a flash and yet there has been so much that has happened. I looked at my biography in that interview – I said “I live in Lincolnshire, UK, with my husband and grown up son – and 3 cats! “

Well, I’m still here in the same house – with the same husband! – Still have three cats but only one of those is one of the original three in that interview. Sadly two old gentlemen died and we now have two crazy Maine Coon cats – Flora the elegant grey female and Charlie the mischievous ginger and white kitten (well he’s 8 months old and being a Maine Coon is just about the size of an ordinary fully grown cat.). My son now has his own home with his partner – and his own family of cats!

And obviously I’m still writing romance – I celebrated my 25th year of being published in 2009 – and I’m looking forward to keeping on writing for many years yet.

I took a look back at the interview I gave in 2008 and I found it intriguing to see how so much that I was pleased about then still affects me now – but in some very different ways. For example, then I was talking about the way that the ‘how to write romance guide I’d written – 12-point Guide to Writing Romance – had sold out completely and the publisher wanted a new edition.’ Well, that 12 Point Guide is now in its third edition – and this one is revised and expanded. Even more exciting for me is that it’s now out in ebook form on Kindle – something that I never imagined would happen. In fact the growth in ebooks has been huge in the past three years!

Because of that book, I’ve been asked to do a lot of workshops and teaching how to write romances and that has been a lot of fun. And it’s taken me to places I never expected I’d be running a workshop in. Every year now I teach a weekend course in Fishguard in Wales and again at Writers’ Holidays in Caerleon in the summer. Next year, I’ve been asked to run a week long writing course in Tuscany at the Watermill in Posara – I’ve heard so much about this place and how beautiful it is so I can’t wait!

In that interview I talked about the books I had coming up – all of which have now sold internationally and been reprinted in many languages – and all of them have appeared in ebook form. In fact lots of my books are now being brought out again as ebooks which gives them a whole new lease of life. So even as I’m preparing my new novels, the older ones are appearing and finding a whole new audience.

Looking back, I was wondering how I’d answer some of the questions that Jen asked back then if I was doing that interview today – How about this question –

What has been your highlight of your career to this point?
I had a real highlight in my career this year when the Romantic Times Reviewers’ Choice Awards were announced . When I talked to Jen in 2008, I had a real ambition to have one of my books chosen as a RT Top Pick . It’s something I’ve hoped for all my writing life. Well, since then not only have two of my books (Bedded By The Greek Billionaire and The Konstantos Marriage Demand) been awarded that Top Pick, but in April The Konstantos Marriage Demand was awarded Best Harlequin Presents Extra 2010. That really was worth celebrating.

Another thing Jen asked was this –
Who are some of your favorite authors and books?
And among my answers I said – I have always loved Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights.  Right from when I was at school, when my teacher told the class the beginning of the story of Wuthering Heights, I’ve been fascinated and impressed by that book. I don’t know how many times I’ve read it, and I studied it for both my degree and my MA at the University of Wales (which is also where I met my husband!). So I was thrilled when my editor asked me if I would join in a special project – a mini-series that they had planned. This was to be a series of four books inspired by some of the classics of romantic fiction – books like Jane Eyre, Pride and Prejudice, Emma and – would I like to do Wuthering Heights! I loved working on this book. It was a real challenge though because Wuthering Heights isn’t a real romance, there’s no happy ending for one thing. I had to create a story that had the atmosphere and the passion of the original – and gave my characters that happy ending that I think everyone has always hoped for for them.

That’s my next book out – it’s called The Return of The Stranger and it will be published in the UK in September and in America in Presents Extra in October. The cover in the UK is one of the new look designs – that’s something else that’s changed in the past 3 years – and I think it’s really fantastic. I’ll ask Jen to post a copy of it so you can see and tell me what you think.

So I’ve caught up a little with what’s been happening in those three years since July 2008 – there’s been lots happening, lots to celebrate. And now here we are celebrating Romancing the Book’s third anniversary. Happy Anniversary Jen – and here’s to the next 3 years. I hope you’ll have me back to visit when you celebrate your 6th . . .

And as it’s a celebration, I’m running a special contest so that I can give away a signed copy of one of my books- my latest Presents Extra The Proud Wife – I’m giving three prizes, one for each year that Romancing The Book has been going. All you have to do is to leave a comment in the Comments section – tell me what you’re celebrating this year or what you plan for your latest birthday/anniversary – and I’ll get Sid the Cat who chooses all my winners to pick a three names to send the prize too.

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Kate Walker has been writing for Harlequin since 1984 when her first book The Chalk Line was published, She writes for Harlequin Presents and her latest title The Proud Wife was published in March and April 2011. Coming up is The Return of The Stranger in the mini-series The Powerful and The Pure published in September 2011 (Mills & Boon Modern) and in Harlequin Presents Extra in October. She is also the author of the 12 Point Guide to Writing Romance.

You can find out more about Kate’s books on her web site http://www.kate-walker.com/ and the most up to date news is on her blog http://kate-walker.blogspot.com/

Contest details:

  • We have 3 copies of The Proud Wife up for grabs.
  • The contest is open to everyone, international readers included.
  • You must leave a comment for entry.
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  • While following the blog isn’t required, it is appreciated.
  • The contest ends on Sunday, July 3.

Purchase Links for The Proud Wife