The Romance Reviews

The Romance Reviews

A Spell in Provence

A Spell in Provence

Sunday, 24 April 2016

Welcome to Bestselling Romance Author Anna Markland

I am delighted to welcome bestselling author of Medieval Romance Anna Markland to the blog today. Anna's latest romance LOYAL HEART will be released on May 3rd but is available to pre-order right now.
Hello Anna and welcome. Can you tell us a little about you?
I was born in Lancashire but I’ve lived most of my life in Canada.

Lancashire is where I live now. It's a beautiful part of England but a long way from Canada! Tell me, what did you want to be when you were a child? Did you always know you wanted to write? 
I wanted to be a teacher, and I followed that dream for many years. I loved teaching, but eventually felt the urge for a different career.

Teaching is indeed a wonderful job, but it can be very stressful too...Where do you get your ideas for your stories?
History provides a basic storyline for the writer of medieval romance and then I fit my characters into that. As for the things that happen to them in the books, who knows? I have on occasion used aspects of my family’s experiences. For example my granddaughter was badly scalded as an infant. Peridotte, the heroine of Hearts and Crowns suffers a scalding. Adam, the hero of Haunted Knights loses his hearing to an illness. I have a grandson who is deaf.

Can you tell us about LOYAL HEART?
It’s Book One of a new series that’s an offshoot of a previous series, The FitzRam Family Trilogy. Blythe, one of the daughters of that family, an Englishwoman, married a Saxon count called Dieter von Wolfenberg and went to live in Saxony. This series tells the love stories of Blythe and Dieter’s children. Their daughter Sophia is the heroine of Loyal Heart. I don’t seem to be able to leave my families in limbo. The amateur genealogist in me wants to follow them from one generation to the next.

I think you're right. Authors do get attached to their characters and their family. I had the same issue with the Saintclair family in my historical romances...I just couldn't let them go! Can you describe your hero in three words?
Brandt is unhappy, pessimistic, an outsider.

And your heroine?
Sophia is optimistic, spoiled, determined.

What did Brandt think the first time he saw Sophia?
I think the excerpt gives a fair indication.

It does indeed (the excerpt is at the end of the post)! What did Sophia think of Brandt the first time she saw him?  In her own words:

She turned impatiently, fully expecting yet another overweight count or baron. Instead, her father was shaking hands with a young man who was far from portly. The giant stood taller than any of her brothers, even Johann, though he was probably about the same age as her half-brother. Glossy hair, as inky black as hers was blonde, framed his face before falling to broad shoulders. He was too stunning to be true, the kind of knight troubadours sang of.”

Brandt looks like a wonderful hero...Tell me, Anna, what is the one thing you absolutely need to write?
Quiet.

Like me, then, Anna, although I rarely get any! What are you working on at the moment?
Book Two of the Von Wolfenberg Dynasty Series, Courageous Heart, which will star Sophia’s brother, Lute (short for Luther).

Promotion is part of an author's 'job'. I personally find it quite difficult and time-consuming. How do you promote your work?
For the past few years I’ve hosted other authors on a weekly blog. I’ve since been invited to be part of several anthologies with many of those writers and that has helped introduce my work to their readers too.  I find the hardest thing about promotion is to be consistent, but with FB, Twitter, etc., you have to be consistently putting out the message.

I know this next question is quite tricky, but what is your favourite hero from a film or a novel ever?
From a film I would have to say Yul Brynner in The Magnificent Seven, or any film he starred in, just because I loved Yul Brynner. Can’t say I have a favorite heroine. Jane Eyre perhaps.

It's a long time since I watched a film with Yul Brynner. I'll never forget how great he was in The King and I, one of my favourite films when I was a child...How do you pick the location for a story?
History usually chooses my settings.

I love choosing names for my characters, especially for my historical romances. How do you choose yours?
I’ve used the names of some of my grandchildren and children, or I’ve researched medieval names of the region.

What comes first when you are thinking of a new story - the plot or the characters?
The characters, although I have to fit them into the historical framework.

What was your best ever moment as a writer?
When I got the first review on my first book, Conquering Passion. A 5 star!!

That must have been a wonderful moment indeed, Anna! One last question...Do you find it difficult to come up with titles for your novels?
Yes.

Thank you very much for answering all my questions today, Anna. Now for the WORD ASSOCIATION FUN TEST! What are the first three words that pop into your mind when you think of....

winter: snow, Christmas, sleds

summer: beaches, gardens, warmth

romance: writing, heroes, love

writing: computer, Amazon, royalties

chocolate: allergic, dark, smooth


Oh no...Don't tell me you are allergic to chocolate!

Here is the blurb for LOYAL HEART

An impossible choice…love or family loyalty. 
Book I of a brand new series from Anna Markland, The Von Wolfenberg Dynasty. 
Sophia falls in love with a guest at her brother’s wedding, but he is an envoy sent by her father’s enemies. Brandt intends to return home as soon as his unwelcome obligation to attend the wedding is fulfilled. It quickly becomes apparent he’ll be lucky to leave the celebrations alive. 

You can buy LOYAL HEART at



Excerpt:

Brandt became frustrated when several pavilions obscured his view of the young woman’s progress, then gasped when he caught sight of her again. She’d removed her head-covering. Masses of blonde hair cascaded down her back almost to her bottom. A golden cloak.

In a moment of lunacy he was tempted to rush across the meadow and compliment her riding skills so he could get closer to the incredible tresses, mayhap sift his fingers…But he closed his mouth and jolted back to reality quickly. He was an outsider. An enemy. Better not to attract attention.


Author Bio

Passion conquers whatever obstacles a hostile medieval world can throw in its path. My page-turning adventures have earned me a place on Amazon’s All-Star list. Besides writing, I have two addictions-crosswords and genealogy, probably the reason I love research. I am a fool for cats. My husband is an entrepreneur who is fond of boasting he’s never had a job.I live on Canada’s scenic west coast now, but I was born and raised in the UK and I love breathing life into the history of my homeland.

Escape with me to where romance began.

You can find me at my website and my Facebook page, Anna Markland Novels.Tweet me @annamarkland, join me on Pinterest, or sign up for my newsletter.

Thank you very much for being my guest today, Anna. I really enjoyed finding more about you and your new book and I wish you lots of success with LOYAL HEART.


7 comments:

  1. Thanks for having me as your guest today, Marie. I love the design of your blog.

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  2. Thank you very much, Anna. It was a pleasure!

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  3. Wishing Anna all the best. I really like the cover

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Julie. I'm fond of the cover too.

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  4. Great interview, Anna! Love the cover - can't wait to read this one!

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  5. Thank you for visiting, Julie and Lana. I really love that cover too!

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