Rebecca Cohen dropped by the blog to tell us about her latest release, her historical m/m novel James, Earl of Crofton.
How long have you been writing? Can you tell us a bit about your journey to publication?
I wrote a lot in my teenage years, but going to university changed that as I went off to study science. A couple of degrees later, and after starting a career in my area of expertise, I was bit by the bug to write again. I felt something lacking and that was my creative storyteller wanting to get in on the action. So after several iterations I wrote what was to become my first novel (published in 2011). Servitude was a high fantasy mm romance, which is currently out of print having parted ways with my old publishers (Dreamspinner), but will return at some point. My first historical came along in 2012, what was meant to be a short novella to get a brain itch out of my system, became a full-length novel. That book was The Actor and the Earl and it spawned two more in the same series and two spin off series, with several more stories still to come.
What do you enjoy about writing in your chosen genres?
I write in multiple sub-genres of mm romance with historical being the one I’m playing in most at the moment. As well as the joy of crafting characters I get a real kick out of building the world they inhabit. For my historicals I like to be as accurate as possible, although there are elements of poetic license and enabling the romantic arc, as we don’t know everything about what happened hundreds of years ago. I love uncovering titbits of information of every day life which I can feed into a story, but it’s a fine balance as too much makes it feel like a text book and that’s not what I want for my romances.
Are you planning on spring-cleaning your bottom drawer? Or is spring for you about new beginnings and a new project?
I’m in the process of working through my back catalogue and re-publishing the ones I received the rights back for. There are a couple of shorter stories I want to expand, and novel length beasties that need a re-edit before being released back into the world. Some will have to wait until their sequels have been written as I’d like to be a position to have those in place first. So yeah, it’s a spring clean of a fashion, and I have several waiting for attention.
Can you tell us – or hint at – what you’re working on at the moment?
One of the spinoffs of The Crofton Chronicles was Saving Crofton Hall, about Ben, the current (modern day) earl, needing to save his stately home. This will need to be re-published but I am working on the sequel, Making History at Crofton Hall, where the new in-house historian helps uncover several family secrets and, thanks to a few strings being pulled, Ben and his home end up on a TV documentary where some familiar characters from the family history become centre stage once again.
Do you have writing habits – such as always getting up early to write, or writing in the evening? Or do you write when the mood takes you? Are you a plotter or a “pantser”?
I don’t have a writing schedule, I write when I can, and when I have spare brain capacity. My day job can be pretty full on at times and I have a little boy, so I really have to grab the opportunity whenever. I like to plot the story out, writing certain sections while researching others, and try not to do too much editing until the first draft is done. I can’t force the words, if I do I tend to end up with something I can’t use, so it’s no real wonder why my latest novel James, Earl of Crofton took three years from first word to publishing.
Where do you write? Have you got a little nook at home, or do you write wherever you happen to be on a laptop or on your phone?
My office in our house is for the day job when I work from home, and I don’t tend to write in there as I want to keep a work life balance by being able to close the door on the day job. That means I tend to sit cross-legged on the sofa with my personal laptop for writing, usually with a notebook close to hand for making additional scribbles or notes.
Tell us about your latest release.
James Earl of Crofton is my latest novel, which is a new adventure in the Crofton Universe. Here we meet James, the great-grandson of Anthony from The Crofton Chronicles.
A historical romp through the court of Charles II with a new earl, a chivalrous highwayman, and a potential suitor playing hard to get. Full of intrigue and romance, you can lose yourself in the beauty of the Restoration, while peering into the underbelly of a society where everything has changed….
About the author
Rebecca Cohen spends her days dreaming of a living in a Tudor manor house, or a Georgian mansion. Alas, the closest she comes to this is through her characters in her historical romance novels. She also dreams of intergalactic adventures and fantasy realms, but because she’s not yet got her space or dimensional travel plans finalised, she lives happily in leafy Hertfordshire, England, with her husband and young son. She can often be found with a pen in one hand and sloe gin with lemon tonic in the other.
Find Rebecca’s novels on Amazon.
James, Earl of Crofton
James Redbourn, Viscount of Crofton, enjoys all the pleasures King Charles II’s Restoration court affords him. His encounter with the enigmatic Chivalrous Highwayman in Epping Forest, sets the court aflame. Tales of the charming rogue treating his latest victim with his usual gentle hand has ladies’ fans quivering with every whisper.
While the Chivalrous Highwayman is a delicious fantasy, it is the intriguing Adam Dowson, the son of one of the greatest Cavalier generals, who is firing James’s daytime desires. Their friendship might be growing stronger, but Adam seems to be one of the few men who is impervious to James’s charms, no matter how hard James tries.
When James’s father become deathly ill, James races home. He is ill-prepared to become the 4th Earl of Crofton, and his father’s vague but dire warnings on his deathbed only make matters worse. Now the earl, James must discover what is happening at Crofton Hall that had troubled his father so deeply.
James turns to Adam for help. Despite Adam’s own secrets, James trusts him. James hopes he’s not making a mistake, risking his family estate, and his already bruised heart. Together, they need to work to clear out the rotten core at Crofton Hall, and along the way secure a happy future for them both.