The Alternative CV – Quick fire questions for authors

The Alternative CV  this week welcomes exciting  new author Astrid Arditi. Her fabulous romantic suspense  A Cunning Plan  has just been released.

Hi Astrid,  it’s great to meet you. Make yourself comfortable because we have a few questions.  

ARDITI Astrid & Jeremy 19398 03.05.16 by AJ06 - Copy One quality you have which other people who know you might question?
I’m strong. Most people around me see my insecurities and shyness and think I’m weak, but comes a crisis and I’m surprisingly resilient.

 A fictional character you fantasise over/ fell in love with? (One of your own preferably.)

My heroine’s male counterpart, Ethan Cunning. He comes off as annoying and cocky but he’s a good man at his core, faithful, honest and fiercely protective of the woman he loves.
                                                                                               

  One item you would consign to Room 101?
Make up. I use it sometimes but it feels like a massive waste of time.

  One line that sums up your WIP this week?                                                Progressing! It was all locked up in my head till the book launch, waiting in line, but now I finally got to reconnect with my keyboard, which feels fantastic!

 One sentence that sums up your thoughts about social media?
Time consuming, frustrating at times but a great source of support and inspiring stories.

   Kindle, tablet or paperback. Which one do you go to bed with and why?
Kindle. I’m an avid reader so I really appreciate the number of books I can stow away in it. Plus both of our kids sleep in our room these days so using a bedside table lamp is out of the question. 

       One thing lurking on your writing desk that shouldn’t be there?    Everything! I work on my coffee table, which is at the best times littered with toys, cookie  wrappers and half empty water bottles. I’m a mess!
     Where do you see yourself as a writer in five years’ time?
Exactly where I am now but in another city. We’re moving to New York in the summer. My kids are young so I’ll still be a mother to them first and a writer when they spare me the time. Hopefully it will be enough so I can write many more Sloane Harper books 

We hope so as well Astrid. Your writing space sounds a bit like  my own. Thanks for being my guest today.

Now, let’s read a little about your recent release.
BLURBCunning Plan
Determined to put her family back together, Sloane Harper stalks her ex husband and his annoyingly stunning mistress, Kate. But she’s not the only one. Handsome IRS agent Ethan Cunning is surveying them too, but not for the same reasons. He is attempting to nail Kate’s playboy boss.
Ethan and Sloane decide to help each other, which sends Sloane’s wobbly life spinning out of control. She’ll have to face danger, humiliation, and scariest of all, the dating scene, to lure her daughters’ father home.
Losing control was the best thing to happen to Sloane… until it turned lethal.

 

AUTHOR BIO
Astrid Arditi was born from a French father and Swedish mother. She lived in Paris and Rome before moving to London with her husband and daughter back in 2013.
After dabbling in journalism, interning at Glamour magazine, and teaching kindergarten, Arditi returned to her first love: writing.
She now splits her time between raising her kids (a brand new baby boy just joined the family) and making up stories.
A Cunning Plan is Arditi’s first published work.

BUY LINKS
Amazon UK http://www.amazon.co.uk/Cunning-Plan-Astrid-Arditi-ebook/dp/B01D7H7O42/
Amazon US http://www.amazon.com/Cunning-Plan-Astrid-Arditi-ebook/dp/B01D7H7O42/
IBooks https://itunes.apple.com/fr/book/a-cunning-plan/id1102554468?mt=11
Nook http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/a-cunning-plan-astrid-arditi/1123657004?ean=2940152965568
Kobo https://store.kobobooks.com/en-us/ebook/a-cunning-plan-5

CONTACT INFO
I blog at http://www.astridarditi.com
Facebook Astrid Arditi author https://www.facebook.com/Astridarditiauthor
Twitter @astrid_arditi https://twitter.com/astrid_arditi

 

Four bells ! But it’s the dog watch so we can push off early. The naval clock.

‘Jane put her fingers in her mouth and let out a loud, high-pitched whistle, which caused the whole watch to instantly turn in her direction. A babble of loud, confused voices swept through the lower deck. They responded to bells and hails, but none were too sure what this particular whistle indicated.’  Extract from – Rebellious Cargo. 

I was devastated when my alarm failed to go off at 3.30 am, in order to haul myself out of bed to watch the lunar eclipse. I was determined to witness the red moon, but sadly  I woke up at 4.15 am, just in time to miss the whole show.

Alarm bells and calls to action bombard us these days. I’m  still not sure which particular ring, shudder, whistle or ditty indicates what is happening on my electronic devices.

IMG00094-20120427-1221This would not have been a problem in the days of sail. The whistles and bells  heard on board  were understood by all hands and everyone knew where they should be. And God help them if they weren’t at their posts at the prescribed time. The ring of the ship’s bell was an incessant sound that punctuated the day along with the turning of the glass – a sand filled instrument that measured the half hour intervals.  A bit like an egg  timer. Ah…remember egg timers, such simplicity and yet the egg always  turned out perfect.glaa

The sailor’s  day  was split into  5 x 4 hour watches and 2 x 2 hour watches (the dog-watches). Each watch was punctuated every half hour by  the ringing of the bell and turning of the glass. Half an hour into a watch  there would be one ring of the bell, one  hour into the watch two rings of the bell and so on until eight bells signalled  the end of a 4 hour watch.  The bell ringing  made everyone aboard aware of how much longer they had to work  before they could finish their watch.

The watches consisted of  first watch – 20:00hrs to midnight,  middle watch- midnight to 04:00hrs,  morning watch – 0400 to 08:oohrs, forenoon watch 08:00hrs to noon,  afternoon watch -noon to 16:00hrs,  first dog-watch – 16:00 to 18:00  and the second dog-watch – 18:00 to 20:00. 

The two shorter watches  made  the total shifts an odd number, therefore facilitating  the shift rotation, so  the same crew were not always on  duty  at the same times of the day.  It also ensured that everyone could eat the  evening meal at a reasonable time.

11846566_946751408701989_4918351381284821063_n rebellious cargo

I learnt quite a lot about  life  at sea whist writing  my latest historical novel. Rebellious Cargo.  A tale of passion and intrigue set on a naval frigate  against the backdrop of Nelson’s navy.

Here is a taster Jane Charlesworth, daughter of England’s foremost code breaker, is the only person thought capable of deciphering a vital government document. But when a naval frigate is sent to enlist her services and transport her to Malta, Jane is horrified. Haunted with terrible memories of an earlier voyage, she has no intention of putting herself under the protection of the Admiralty ever again.

Anxious to be at the forefront of the action as the peace with France crumbles, Adam Marston is livid when his ship is diverted to collect a reluctant blue-stocking whose accusing eyes and insolent manner hold nothing but contempt for him and his orders. Sparks fly when captain and code breaker find they have different ideas on how to handle a French attack, a malicious chaplain, and boisterous midshipmen.

Duty and desire collide as they approach Malta, but Jane is determined that her judgment will not be clouded by Adam who, once he has despatched his Rebellious Cargo, will sail out of her life again. But, as the ship docks, Jane’s life becomes a nightmare and she is forced to gamble that Adam is the only person she can trust.

As passion battles with duty, will future orders throw them together or tear them apart?

To read a longer extract  please  click here 

REBELLIOUS CARGO  Available now.  

   amazon_co_ukAmazon_Logo_Vector_Format          https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/580397  http://www.nook.com/gb/ebooks/rebellious-cargo-by-susan-lodge/2940152376579

Pubished  by Crooked Cat Publishing   

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Dishing up some romance – 60% off Tasty Regency and Contemporary Cocktail.

Picture2 Welcome !   Only a Hero Will Do and The Man in The Buff Breeches are celebrating summer with a  price reduction of 60%   

Recipie for  Only a Hero Will Do

1. Take one, firm ship’s Physician (not over ripe)  and one impulsive female gambler and toss them together in a  large wooden naval ship.

2. Pour into the middle of an enemy sea and leave  to simmer.

3. Season with  a pinch of sea salt and  a good shake of humour.

4.  Beat in a  battle and then carefully fold in  a cup full of heroic deeds and a heap of family betrayal. Moisten with a few tears.

5. Heat gently until it  smoulders. Make sure all  ingredients are combined well.

6. Enjoy whilst lounging in a comfortable chair.

Here is a taster.        

      Marriage to a cruel dandy, is not how Hetty Avebury envisions spending the rest of her life.  Determined to avoid the match she raises funds the only way she knows how – gambling .Her plans go astray and she finds herself on board a man-of-war under the care of its high handed physician. But Hetty soon realizes that Doctor Withington is not quite the stuffed shirt she had first imagined.

If it wasn’t bad enough declaring one of the pressed men as a woman, Robert has been tasked with the tiresome job of returning her safely back to her dysfunctional family. It was ten years ago when his father gambled away his inheritance, home, and any chance of marrying the woman he loved. So when Robert discovers Hetty gambling he takes drastic action to cure her of the habit.

Available for downoad at  Musa Publishing     Amazon.com     Amazon UK   Barnes and Noble   Smashwords . Or read more at susanlodge.com

And if that’s not to your taste and you prefer a romance set in the twenty first century then maybe you would like to consider.  The Man in the Buff Breeches  – now on sale at  99c (60% off until 20 August.)

Recipe for The Man in the Buff Breeches

1.Take a thirty something career girl and  mix with an  invitation to a Regency themed ball.  This will take some effort as they do not combine easily.

2. Pour in to a  long glass with an assortment of men dressed up in breeches.

3. To prevent the mixture overheating add some ice cold cubes of terror and  stir with a Regency fan.

4. Relax in your bunny slippers and enjoy.

Here is a taster

themaninthebuffbreeches-500       When a man in tight buff breeches examines her with his quizzing glass and calls her Miss Bennet, Shona fears the Regency themed ball is going to be as awful as she predicted. But then she is introduced to the gorgeous Nick who ticks every box for her perfect man.

As Shona looks forward to her first date with Nick, her happiness is marred by some disturbing observations around her flat. She doesn’t usually leave her blind rolled down that far, and she never keeps her bunny slippers tidily by the bed. And what is the man in the buff breeches doing lurking on the street outside?

As both men pursue her Shona finds one makes her body quiver with desire, the other itch with annoyance. Then the men finally confront each other, and her life turns into a nightmare. Can her judgment regarding the male species really be so seriously flawed?

Available for downoad at  Musa Publishing     Amazon.com     Amazon UK   Barnes and Noble   Smashwords . Or read more at susanlodge.com

 

 

 

 

HOW MEN IN BREECHES FIND THEIR WAY INTO A CONTEMPORARY ROMANCE

I like to write contemporary as well as historical stories and  lately I find one genre keeps sneaking into the other – where it has no business – especially as there is no time travel involved.Picture1
I hadn’t immediately planned a sequel to my contemporary novella The Man in The Blue Flowered Shorts but Shona ( best friend of Lyn the heroine) simply wouldn’t leave my head. She simply escaped from the pages and ran off on her own to appear in The Man in The Buff Breeches.
As a romance writer, once the happy ever after ending has been achieved, I prefer to leave my couple alone or possibly just make a cameo appearance. But friends and siblings of the central character are, in my opinion, great sequel material. Their characters are there already, alive inside your head, with a ready back story. A great start to plot out a worthy adventure for them.

In The Man with the Blue Flowered Shorts, we have Lyn, a thirty-ish career woman with a passion for reading Regency romance – and her best friend Shona who would gladly nominate the whole period to go into room 101. So as Lyn’s story ended, I found Shona needed a story of her own. And what better place to start then at a Regency themed ball in London.

Googling the subject I was surprised to discover these events are held frequently and worldwide. But do the book inspired heroes in breeches really look quite so sexy in modern day England? And  why are these baggy seated, tight legged garments regarded with such romantic overtures?

I try to picture a man in Regency attire clambering out of a lake in 2013. Even if he looked like Darcy he’d still stink of pond weed (at the very best).  And instead of striding purposely out of the water and across the grass he would more likely be cowering with cramp and shivering in the English rain.
But who knows with fashion – the full Regency attire may be on the catwalk next year. Only I don’t know if it will look half as exciting made in machine washable synthetics.

The Man in The Buff Breeches  published by Musa Publishing on the 8th November.

themaninthebuffbreeches-200What is it about men in breeches? Shona finds out her dream man turns out to be not at all what she expected.

When a man in tight buff breeches examines her with his quizzing glass and calls her Miss Bennet, Shona fears the Regency themed ball is going to be as awful as she predicted. But then she is introduced to the gorgeous Nick who ticks every box for her perfect man.

As Shona looks forward to her first date with Nick, her happiness is marred by some disturbing observations around her flat. She doesn’t usually leave her blind rolled down that far, and she never keeps her bunny slippers tidily by the bed. And what is the man in the buff breeches doing lurking on the street outside?

As both men pursue her, Shona finds one makes her body quiver with desire, the other itch with annoyance. Then the men finally confront each other, and her life turns into a nightmare. Can her judgment regarding the male species really be so seriously flawed? Click here for excerpt

Please  visit my website at  susanlodge.com or  author page at  Amazon.comAmazonUK or Barnes & Noble for further details of all my books.