Friday, April 30, 2010

The Viscount Finals at RomCon

Just heard that the Viscount Claims his Bride made finals at RomCon in the published authors category. Very exciting for me. Would love to hear if others finaled too, the list is not up yet.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Blessings from the Cover Goddess

Lots of people ask how much influence an author has on her cover. The partial truth is that we just cross our fingers and when we get an awesome cover, say a prayer of thanks to the “Cover Gods.”
But another part of the truth is that we DO have input, at least, at Harlequin. We are asked to fill out an “Art Fact Sheet” which includes a synopsis, descriptions of the hero, heroine, symbols in the story, and the author’s suggestions of scenes in the book that might make good covers.
Here’s the scene description I wrote that turned into the stunning cover for HIS BORDER BRIDE, my May release.
“Wedding night. Unable to relax and release, Clare is unable to respond to him until he trains her like one of her beloved falcons. This means blindfolding her with a silken scarf so she can relax and release her fears and self-consciousness.”
Because I create with words, not pictures, it was hard for me to visualize how real pros might take that short description and turn it into something so yummy the reader must pick it up.
Well, they did that in spades!
What they did NOT do was illustrate a literal scene from the story. There’s no blindfold. The clothes and bedding aren’t exactly what are in the book. But the visual symbolism says it all. Her white gown implies a wedding dress. (And her innocence.) The lush pillow fabric is a reference to the coat of arms of the English royal family. (The hero is the illegitimate son of a prince of England and a Scots woman.) And the plaid tells the reader it’s a Scottish setting.
All told, a beautiful symbol of my story. I think it’s my best cover yet.
So I’m giving thanks to the cover gods. Well, in my case, to the cover goddess, because I credit my wonderful editor for being the “goddess” who guided the team to this gorgeous result.

BLYTHE GIFFORD is the author of five medieval romances from Harlequin Historical. She specializes in characters born on the wrong side of the royal blanket. With HIS BORDER BRIDE, she crosses the border and sets a story in Scotland for the first time, where the rules of chivalry don’t always apply. Here’s a brief description:
Royal Rogue: He is the bastard son of an English prince and a Scotswoman. A rebel without a country, he has darkness in his soul.
Innocent Lady: Daughter of a Scottish border lord, she can recite the laws of chivalry, and knows this man has broken every one. But she’s gripped by desire for him—could he be the one to unleash the dangerous urges she’s hidden until now?
She loves to have visitors at or

Cover Art used by arrangement with Harlequin Enterprises Limited. All rights reserved. ®and T are trademarks of Harlequin Enterprises Limited and/or its affiliated companies, used under license. Copyright 2010

Friday, April 02, 2010

Congratulations to the Harlequin Historical Rita Finalists!!

It was fantastic news for Harlequin Historical on 25 March 2010 -- four Harlequin Historical authors got the nod that they were finalists in the RWA's Rita contest.

In the Best Historical Category:
Michelle Willingham Taming Her Irish Warrior

In the Best Regency Historical Category:
Elizabeth Rolls Lord Baybrook's Penniless Bride

In the Best Novella category:

"Annalise and the Scandalous Rake” by Deb Marlowe in The Diamonds of Welbourne Manor
"Charlotte and the Wicked Lord" by Amanda McCabe in The Diamonds of Welbourne Manor

If you missed ANY of these fantastic books, you can still get them as e-books.

The winner is announced on 31 July 2010. It would be utterly fantastic if Harlequin Historical did a treble!!!