Sunday 6 December 2020

πŸŽ… Christmas Sunday Brunch with Jaffareadstoo ~ Louise Allen


On this quiet December Sunday morning why don't you put the kettle on, make your favourite breakfast and settle down for a Festive Sunday Brunch with Jaffareadstoo

πŸŽ… I'm delighted to welcome author, Louise Allen to our Christmas Sunday Brunch today πŸŽ…

πŸŽ…Merry Christmas, Louise. What favourite food are you bringing to this Christmas Sunday brunch? 

Smoked salmon from our local smokehouse. 

πŸŽ…Would you like a pot of English breakfast tea, a strong Americano, or a celebratory glass of Bucks Fizz? 

Definitely the Bucks Fizz! I might need a cup of tea afterwards to recover. 

πŸŽ…Where shall we eat brunch – around the kitchen table, in the formal dining room, or outside on the patio? 

Around the kitchen table, please –friendly and informal 

Shall we have festive music playing in the background? And if so will you share with us a favourite Christmas song or piece of Christmas music that makes you happy? 

I’m a bit of a grouch about Christmas songs because I feel sorry for staff in shops where they get played over and over again, but Silent Night gets me every time and, for a smile – who can’t resist Jingle Bells? 

πŸŽ…Which of your literary heroes (dead or alive) are joining us for Sunday Brunch today? 

The truly wonderful Terry Pratchett and Chaucer for their sense of humour, M.R. James to tell us ghostly tales afterwards and Mary Stewart who would spin wonderful stories of romance and mystery. 

πŸŽ…Which favourite Christmas book will you bring to Sunday Brunch?

I would actually bring a puzzle and hope someone knows which book it is, because I’d love to read it again and can’t recall author or title! It is a 12 days of Christmas tale, set in old Amsterdam and the family home gradually becomes overrun with all the gifts the eldest daughter’s true love sends her. 

πŸŽ…When you are writing do you still find time to read for pleasure? And is there a book you would like to read but haven’t had time for …yet! 

I read in the morning in bed with a cup of tea and I read at night when I go to bed. What will go to the top of the TBR pile when arrives (due today!) is Scoff: A history of food and class by Pen Vogler. It sounds quite serious, but judging by the reviews, it is actually very entertaining. 

πŸŽ…What’s the oldest book on your book shelf? 

Because I write about the late Georgian period I have a lot of original cookery books, London guidebooks and so forth on the shelves. But the oldest is nothing to do with that and I inherited it from my father. It is dated 1676 and it is Natural and Political observations… made upon the Bills of Mortality by John Graunt. Gruesomely interesting! 

πŸŽ…Where do you find the inspiration for your novels? 

I honestly have no idea about most of them. C S Forester said that he was convinced that his writer’s brain was like a swamp and things fell in, decayed, sank to the bottom and then occasional bubbles of gas rose to the surface and that was his inspiration. I have a horrible feeling that exactly describes my brain too. Occasionally I can pin it down – reading that women with debts would marry condemned men, which transferred the debt so it would die with them inspired The Marriage Debt and the sight of the fabulous castle in Luxembourg in the first Daniel Craig Bond film eventually led to The Dangerous Mr Ryder – but those are exceptions. 

πŸŽ…Have you a favourite place to settle down to write and do you find it easier to write in winter or summer?

 If I have to, I can write anywhere (I once wrote a Christmas novella on the deck of a small boat going down the Brahmaputra River in the heat of an India summer) but I prefer to work at my desk with a view of the back garden and across the fields. I’m a very disciplined writer, so I’ll do the day’s words regardless. When things get difficult it is more likely to be because of an issue with the book rather than the time of year. 

πŸŽ…When writing to a deadline are you easily distracted and if so how do you bring back focus on your writing? 

I much prefer working to a deadline – that keeps me focussed. If I don’t have one, or it is right at the beginning of the time available, then I am more likely to be distracted. 

πŸŽ…Give us four essential items that a writer absolutely needs? 

Physical objects? A chair that is good for the back; dedicated writing space, however small; a comfortable bed for a good night’s sleep; access to the kettle for endless tea or coffee. 

Intangible things? A support network, whether that’s family, Significant Other or friends; other writers, whether in person or via social media, Zoom etc; the willingness to listen to constructive criticism; the ability to ignore unhelpful or destructive remarks. 

πŸŽ…What can you tell us about your latest novel or your current work in progress? 

I have just started work on the fifth in my time travel/Regency/ romantic mystery series, Time Into Time. My 21st century heroine Cassie finds herself back in 1807 again with her lover Luc, the Earl of Radcliffe, and they need to solve the mystery of the murder of a politician while trying to negotiate their own across-rime romance. 

Louise's latest novel

Mills & Boon
26 November 2020

Ross Vincent, Marquis of Cranford, with his scarred face and formidable disposition knows he’s hardly a catch. But he needs a wife to take care of his motherless son. Shy, scholarly Prudence Scott seems ideal: she has no expectation of love or passion. She’ll care for his baby in return for the protection of his name. Yet seeing Prudence on their wedding day tests Ross’s willpower to not take his new wife to bed…

πŸŽ… Louise, where can we follow you on social media? πŸŽ…

Twitter: @LouiseRegency 

πŸŽ…More about LouiseπŸŽ…

I was born and brought up in Hertfordshire and now live on the North Norfolk coast with my husband and a garden full of bossy wildlife. I’m the author of over seventy books – historical romance for Harlequin Mills & Boon, indie-published time travel romance mysteries and historical non-fiction. Virtually all my books are set in the ‘long Regency’ and I’m a keen collector of original fashion plates of the period and anything to do with the history of London.

 πŸŽ…Thank you for taking part in Sunday Brunch with Jaffareadstoo πŸŽ…

Thank you for inviting me!

Follow us on Twitter @jaffareadstoo #SundayBrunchwithJaffareadstoo

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