- Which is your favorite book that you have written?
That’s a hard question! I’ve got a huge backlist as I’ve been writing for ten years now. So with that in mind I’m going to say STOWAWAYS (book #4 THE CHALLENGE) is my favourite book and that’s because I’m busy writing it now. At the moment it’s those characters who are very real to me; they follow me wherever I go, come to bed with me, and the plot is constantly spinning around my head. Each book I write is my favourite as I write it…then it’s on to the next one. I guess if I didn’t love each book then I wouldn’t be putting my heart and soul into it and that just wouldn’t do.
- Favorite Character you have written?
Olivia Bailey, my heroine in THE CHALLENGE series. She’s feminine, kind and pretty, yet also a tomboy, brave, surprising and doesn’t take any crap from her men.
- Have you ever visited any other countries?
Yes. Lots. I adore travelling. My latest trip was to Nepal to go trekking in the Himalayas for a few weeks. I love Africa too, and will be visiting there again soon. The places I visit often appear in my books as they fill my senses and my imagination. I’ve put some photographs on my blog of my trip to Nepal if you want to take a look http://lilyharlem.blogspot.co.uk/2017/11/boots-made-for-walking.html?zx=725c33aedaf1310
- Have you ever pet or been close to an exotic animal? What kind of animal?
I went on Safari in South Africa a few years ago and was lucky enough to see the big 5! But closer to home, Mr Harlem bought me a bird of prey experience day for my birthday and I was lucky enough to get up close and personal with a Siberian Eagle Owl called Calypso. She was incredibly beautiful, and also heavy to hold on my glove. She had very powerful talons, so powerful, I was told, that in the wild she could hunt and bring down a wolf by crushing its skull! I’m an animal nut to be honest, anything to do with animals and I’m there!
- Who is your favorite historical figure?
Princess Diana, I grew up near to where she spent her childhood (though she was a little older than me) and I often wonder if we’d have been friends should we have met on our ponies in the woods nearby.
- If you could write about a certain time period which would it be?
I’m planning a Viking story, so that era is currently catching my interest.
- If you could pick your favorite male character, not your own, who would it be?
Mr Darcy is far too obvious a choice, so I’m going to go with Jamie Frazer from the Outlander series. He’s lush and I just can’t resist a man in a kilt!
- Why did you start writing?
I gave up a career in nursing when we moved to Wales ten years ago. Mr H encouraged me to enroll on a writing course at the local university. I was instantly captivated and utterly hooked on learning the craft of creative writing. I had a brilliant and enthusiastic teacher who could be brutally honest at times (which was good!)…and the rest is history.
- If you could change one thing about a book you wrote which book and what would you change?
That’s a really hard one, because I wouldn’t have a book published unless I was really happy with it. I’ve written books that have had intense reactions from readers, especially when I’ve written heroines who are wild and passionate and willing to push boundaries and break rules for love. But that reader reaction doesn’t bother me. I’d hate to be accused of a boring character or plot, a book that did nothing to the readers heart and mind, so if it’s stirred emotions in the reader, as long as the character has justified his/her actions, then that’s all good. I want my characters to be realistic, and that means not being perfect, whether it is the male or female leads. Love is about forgiveness and still loving people even when you know their faults. It’s also about falling for the wrong people and having to figure that out and break away.
- What is your biggest distractor during writing?
Facebook! Argh… it sucks me in…
- Where are you from?
Yorkshire in England originally, though I’ve lived in Scotland as well, and now I’m in Wales. I spend a lot of time in Ireland too as we have family there. I guess that makes me thoroughly British – which you’d be in no doubt of if you heard me speak LOL
- Why did you start writing?
To get my imagination down on paper.
- Summer or winter? Which season do you like best?
I love autumn. It’s the colours, and the crisp morning air. The chance to light the log fire and candles again and cook roast dinners on a Sunday. I couldn’t imagine living somewhere that didn’t have seasons, each one is a joy.
- If you made your own cocktail, what would be in it and how would you name it.
It would be called a Menage a Trois and contain Champagne, brandy and Kir Royale. Add a raspberry into it and it’s a Menage a Quatre!
- With who would you be alone on a island for two months?
Character of books included. My husband of course! Not just because he’s a serious bit of eye candy, but he’s also pretty handy at survival. He’d make sure I was warm and fed and had running warm water for a shower. He takes me on weekend trips into the Brecon Beacons (the Welsh mountains) in all weathers, and never on the beaten track, it’s usually some obscure route he’s planned. He is always prepared and carries a huge backpack (I can’t even lift it!). Most times he even makes me a fresh cup of tea when we get to the top. I wouldn’t be without him in daily life, or when out on an adventure. Though he really doesn’t like leeches…that’s the one thing which really freaks him out!
- Do you have any odd habits?
Loads, LOL, though they’re not odd to me. I can’t stand to do the ironing without a glass of wine. I run on a treadmill every morning while watching Netflix because I hate running outside (and also hate the thought of getting writer’s bum!). I’ve got a huge collection of hot water bottles – I love them. I touch wood if I say something I don’t want to happen. I always have my toenails painted, I can’t remember when they were last ‘naked’. I meditate for ten minute a day at the bottom of the garden, whatever the weather.
- How do you like your tea or coffee?
Tea only! White no sugar. I’m a lucky girl and usually get my first cup in bed!
- Which country would you love to visit?
Antarctica, I’d love to see the majesty of the ice up close and all those pretty blues and whites. I also really fancy a trip to Vienna.
19. What do you do when you are writing? Do you have any music on or movies/TV?
- No, I need absolute silence. Anything I hear competes with the scenes I’m playing out in my head. Though that doesn’t apply to visuals. I could be writing a snowy scene and looking at a summery meadow and blue sky and be fine. It’s noise that really chips into my concentration. To be honest, I can get a bit grumpy about it!
- If you could choose to be one of your characters, who would you pick?
Olivia from THE CHALLENGE of course, because out of all the characters I’ve ever written, she has the most hot men to have fun with! Having said that, it’s not all plain sailing. There’s a lot of testosterone flying about. There’s a reason this series is called what it is, handling all those guys is a challenge in itself.
THE CHALLENGE – Universal Link (also on KU) myBook.to/TheChallengeLH
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