Monday, February 21, 2011

Featured Author: Ellen Margret

 Today's Featured Author is Ellen Margret, a woman who proves that determination is a must-have trait for today's authors. Please join me in welcoming Ellen to the blog!

Can you tell us a little about yourself, Ellen?

I'm a writer from the UK. We live in a cottage in Gloucestershire, near an old mill on a river. It's a beautiful spot and we are regularly visited by swans. I write romantic fiction of all sorts but my favourite period is the mediaeval. I have written about knights, highwaymen, pirates and angels. I love to create larger than life heroes who 'leap out of the page', brandishing their swords. The heroine can often be rather feisty which leads to banter and conflict and, sometimes, humour.

And tell us about your works:

I have just had three novels released.

Axton - This a a spicy, historical romance set in the early nineteenth century. The publisher is DCL Publications and it was released in February 2011.

Faeries Forever - This is an omnibus of five faery stories, containing spicy romance and a lot of tongue-in-cheek humour. The publisher is Melange Books, LLC and it was released in January 2011.

A Knight for Loving - A spicy mediaeval romance with damsels and knights. The publisher is Melange Books, LLC and it was released in January 2011

Can you share the blurb for Axton, your most recent release?

This is the blurb for Axton : He had been a womanising rake who took Iona's virginity at sixteen, and didn't remember doing it. Now, older, wiser and bearing battle scars, Axton employs her as his daughter's Nanny. How long before he discovers who she is? Before then, can she gain retribution for his mistreatment of her?
What inspired you to write Axton?

Regarding Axton, he began as a brash young midshipman who was a terrible womaniser with no conscience. He soon learned his lessons in life though, following a sea battle in which he lost his brother and ended up scarred both mentally and physically. Queue the entrance of the woman he had slept with when she was sixteen. The woman he hurt most turns out to be the woman he finally cannot live without.

So, I guess this story is about the cocky young man who finally grows up after life throws a lot of garbage at him.

How long have you been writing? Have you been at this for a while, or is this a new journey?

I have been writing for perhaps twenty-five years but it was only a few years ago that I got published. My first book was Like Lazarus, a paranormal romance about a man brought back to life on a mountainside as a result of angelic intervention.

So, basically, I did receive a lot of rejection but I never gave up trying to get published. Writing is very, very important to me. I love being creative and conjuring up new characters and situations.

What tools have you used in your journey to improve your writing? Books, websites, groups, etc.

We recently moved house and, my goodness, how many books I had! My own little library. I still don't know where to put them all. So, books are my major resource. I also visit castles as often as I can. We often choose a holiday location just because there are some good castles to visit.

Are you a solitary writer, or do you utilize critique groups?

Totally solitary. I won't even talk about a book whilst I'm writing it. Critique groups are not for me. I have been told by certain editors that, I have a voice, and I thank them for it because I think it's a compliment. So, it's my voice and at this stage in my writing career, I don't think it's going to change.

How much of yourself is present in your writing? Do you look back and find that characters possess a little of your own self in them?

Yes, I think that's true. I'm not a shy and retiring sort and, when necessary, I will have my say especially when I know I'm right. I'm a libra so I like justice to be done. I guess many of my heroines have been like that.

Tell us a little about you, the reader. What authors/genres do you love and why?

Historical romance is my favourite. Some of my favourite authors include - Gaelen Foley, Kathleen Woodiwiss, Jude Deveraux, Catherine Coulter, Roberta Gellis and Laura Kinsale.

Who is your literary idol and why?

Laura Kinsale is possibly my favourite. She has such a talent and a way with words that I relate to and admire.

Name one character in any book that you would like to share a cup of coffee with. What would you discuss?

I would ask Heathcliffe if I could take a stroll with him on the moors. We could open up a picnic basket and take out coffee and cake and then I would engage him in conversation. He could be as mean and moody as he liked.

I wonder what Emily Bronte would have thought about that? Wuthering Heights is a classic.

You mention writing for 25 years and dealing with a lot of rejection, something a lot of us authors are all too familiar with. What is it that made you continue writing, and pushing for publication despite that rejection? What is your advice for authors in the querying phase who are facing similar situations?
When I first began writing I admit I wasn't up to scratch. I had to learn that Point of View - POV- is important. Stay in one person's point of view throughout the scene and don't hop about. I gives clarity to the read. So, I mastered that and developed (or so I am told) a 'voice'.

So, I used to send off my stories to publishers in the UK and America,and it wasn't cheap. Thank goodness for emails. I don't want to be responsible for helping destroy the rain forests! Well, those works got returned to me and the self-addressed envelopes would drop through the letterbox and when I saw them, my heart would drop too. The thing is that you put your heart and soul into creating characters that you live with for months. You get emotionally attached to your hero and heroine. You, above all, want to share them with the world. However, that didn't happen for a long, long time. Too often I felt the sting of tears behind my eyes. Rejection truly hurts.

Still, I didn't give up. I couldn't give up. Firstly, my youngest daughter wouldn't let me. She knew how much I loved writing and told me never to give up because one day I would get accepted. Secondly, I have to write. It's my hobby and distraction from the stresses of the world.

It stops me worrying. Some people knit, some crochet, some do jigsaw puzzles. I write and I love being creative. As a girl I used to get to sleep by 'writing' stories in my head. I could be at it for ages.

So, my advice to aspiring authors is to keep writing. Keep editing that story until it's as perfect as it can be. Strive for perfection and don't let the rejection letters or emails put you off.

Can you share your thoughts on the smaller press experience? What has your personal experience been like, and do you find it suits your writing life/style/goals?

It works for me. Most of my stories are released through DCL Publications and Melange Books, LLC. Both are wonderful to work with. The staff are friendly and approachable. Emails get responded to quickly and problems sorted. Authors and staff are in contact via forums and it's all like one happy family.

Thanks for reading. I enjoyed answering the questions. Everyone have a good day!
Ellen Margret

A tremendous thank you to Ellen for her insightful answers, and for taking the time to appear on the blog. For more information on Ellen and her writing, please visit these links:

Ellen has graciously offered a pdf copy of her story, A Knight for Loving, to a randomly selected winner. To be eligible for a shot at this lovely gift, just read the following excerpt from A Knight for Loving, and post an answer to the question posed at the end. 

Simple, yes? Then start reading! 


“Robert, why do you look at me so?”

He tore his eyes away from her cleavage and deliberately stared at the floor. Then she suddenly touched his arm with her hand.

“I think you are a wonderful man. Perhaps you are the most wonderful man in the world.”

He forced himself to keep looking at the floor. “Oh, there are better men than me, methinks. Now, I think I should leave you alone. I merely wished to see how you were.”

“That is because you are kind and thoughtful. You just called me, your lady.”

“I am sorry, I shall nay do it again.”

“But, I liked the sound of it. I like you, Robert. We used to be so close when we were younger.”

He sighed. “Aye, we were close.” He looked at her hand as she squeezed his, far larger, hand.

“Stop looking down. Look up into my eyes.”


“Why not? Are they so horrible?”

He looked into her eyes then. “God, nay, they are beautiful. I told you that years ago but you thought I was teasing you.”

She smiled. “You are good and kind. Morven is bad and cruel. Robert, I want you to undo the harm that he has done to me. I want you to erase him from my mind and body. Will you do that for me?”

His brows drew together. “Leonora, what are you asking me to do?”

“I am asking you to love me. I want you to couple with me.”

His jaw almost dropped to the floor. “I can nay do that to you. You are sick and vulnerable. What sort of a man would that make me?”

“I am not sick. I am just a little bruised. I beg you, do this for me.  Robert, do you care for me?”

“Aye, I care greatly about you.”

“Good, because I care for you too.”

She put her arms around his neck and her, partially exposed, breasts pressed against his chest. She was the most adorable creature and he desired her so much, but he knew he should not take her.

“Love me tonight. Your love will be the balm to my bruised body and battered soul. Come the morn, I shall be healed and I shall shed no more tears.”

“But, Leonora.”

“I prefer Leona.” She pressed her fingers to his lips. “No buts, Robert. I need this from you. Please, do not let me down. I want you to couple with me, and I want you to love me.”

Robert was torn between his conscience and his heated desire for Leonora. For a long while, he just stared into her eyes, but then she moistened her finger with her tongue and ran it over his lips. That tiny little action was so sensual. “Your lips look so much harder than they really are. They are soft to touch. Robert, will you kiss me?”

He swallowed. “Can you not see that this is wrong? You will hate me if I do this, and the last thing I want is for you to hate me again.”

“That is nonsense. I shall not hate you. Truly, I shall thank you, and I ask only that you do it once.”

“You ask too much for I...” His words dried up as she suddenly knelt up in bed and pulled her night-shift over her head.

Robert felt his throat go dry as he stared at Leonora’s naked body. Her breasts were enticingly large whilst her waist was slim and her belly flat. He frowned at the assortment of bruises, wishing again that

he had been able to kill Morven.

Her face fell. “Oh, dear, you do not like what you see.”

Shaking his head, he reached out with his right hand and gently stroked the purple tissue on her belly. “He hurt you, Leona. I wish him eternal damnation for that.”

She placed her hand on top of his hand and smiled. “Robert, my flesh will heal faster than my mind, methinks, but you can aid my recovery by loving me.”

“I may hurt you. God, you are covered in bruises.” He ran his left hand over her breasts. “He even hit you here.”

“Your touch takes away the pain.”

“You should never have to feel pain.”

“Pain is a part of life. A woman feels pain when she pushes a child from her womb. Sometimes, ‘tis necessary.”

“That was nay necessary,” Robert said, staring at the worst of the bruising on her belly. “Morven is a sadistic bully who needs punishing.” She leant forward and kissed him on the lips. His restraint was crumbling rapidly to dust.

“I caused you awful pain. I stabbed you with a very dirty sword.”

“Aye, you did, but I forgive you.”

“Will you show me your wound? I wish to see if ‘tis healing well.”

Robert stood and tugged his shirt over his head. Staring at his torso, Leonora got off the bed and stood before him. Her hands began to stroke the powerful muscles of his chest. “I thought you wished to

look at my wound.”

“Nay, I just wanted to see you without a shirt on. ‘Twas a ploy, and it worked.”

He chuckled. “What a conniving woman you are.”


Question: How did Robert get his wound?

Post your answer in the comment section below, and we will randomly select a winner from the entries with the correct answer. The winner will have sent to them a pdf copy of
A Knight for Loving by Ellen Margret!


  1. He was Stabbed by a dirty word Leonora said to him.

  2. I love your work, Ellen! Just one more prime example of the versitlity of your talent!
    Woo Hoo!

  3. Winner will be drawn on Wednesday, FYI!

  4. What a great interview! Thanks for coming by Ellen!
    Hmm, is there a trick? Leonora said she stabbed him with a dirty sword...
    I hope he heals her well :-)

  5. Ellen, if anyone attempted to change your voice I might be tempted to stab them with a dirty word. Or a dirty sword! You just keep right on doing what you're doing.

  6. My randomizer has officially declared Deniz the winner of Ellen's giveaway! Congrats Deniz :D

  7. Ow, wow! Thank you, I'm so excited :-)