Friday 17 June 2011

Interview and Contest: Sue Moorcroft - Love & Freedom

 Today I welcome Sue Moorcroft to my blog. She is the author of Love & Freedom, and at the bottom of this interview you can win the book.

Welcome to Mur-y-Castell!

 Tell us something about yourself, so we can get to know you better…

I don’t know where I come from. Or, at least, I never know how to answer the question, ‘Where are you from?’ because I was born in Germany, left at six weeks old, went to Cyprus, Malta, England and Malta again before returning to England at the age of eight. But then I settled in England and have been boringly here ever since.

I’m a writer and a creative writing tutor. My first love is the writing of my novels of dauntless heroines and irresistible heroes, but I also write short stories, serials, articles, courses and writing ‘how to’. I’m the head judge for Writers’ Forum and write two of their columns. I did used to have a proper job, in a bank, but it’s waaaay back in the past and now I earn a living writing/tutoring/judging. Precarious but fun.

I’m a Formula 1-aholic and have a column at I have some magical memories of scuba diving but haven’t felt the urge to dive for a while; I’m learning to play the piano in a desultory way.
Fun fact: there’s a reference to Formula 1 in each of my Choc Lit novels.

Your latest release is called Love & Freedom; can you tell me what it is about?
Honor Sontag leaves her home in west Connecticut and travels to Brighton, England to search for the mother who left her as a baby. She loves Eastingdean, near Brighton, where she rents a bungalow from Clarissa Mayfair. Clarissa’s “little” brother is 6’4” mysterious Martyn Mayfair who doesn’t seem to have a proper job but does have a stalker. Honor goes to work for the stalker, which is unfortunate, and finds herself drawn into several eccentric English lives, including Ru, the stalker’s fourteen-year-old son, and Frog, Ru’s bully. Ru really needs somebody, so I’m glad it’s Honor, because she’s lion-hearted. Martyn Mayfair is fascinated by Honor – but she’s exactly the kind of woman he’s sworn off. So he has to find a way past that. The action also travels to Connecticut for a few chapters because when people get in trouble, they go home. And Honor gets in trouble …

If this book became a movie, who would you see in the leading roles?
Martyn Mayfair would be played by Jared Leto when Jared has long hair brushed forward, and stubble. Not a beard. This is an important distinction, as I hate beards! Nobody with a beard, in my books, ever does well. Honor could be played by the fabulous Julianna Moore – but she’d have to get her hair crimped and be a lighter auburn. I’m sure she wouldn’t mind. It’s a good cause.

Could you tell me about a little about all the other books you have written?
My first published book was Uphill All the Way (Transita) but I’d written Starting Over and All That Mullarkey before Uphill. The market didn’t seem quite right for them at the time, although they went into acquisition meetings (ie fell at the final hurdle). But then I found Choc Lit and they publish exactly what I love to write most, and they wanted Starting Over and All That Mullarkey. A book called Family Matters had gone to Robert Hale, meantime, but only in hardback, so I rewrote it as Want to Know a Secret? for Choc Lit. I love my Choc Lit books.

Starting Over is about Tess, who is someone who simply moves on when the going gets tough. She moves to a village in Cambridgeshire – she’s an illustrator so has a portable career – and runs into (literally, ie car crash) Ratty (Miles Rattenbury). She’s been dumped by email by Olly, who she thought she was going to marry, so she’s looking for somewhere to settle down and make friends. Of course, she gets herself in a whole new mess but the crux of the book is whether she’s found something worth sticking around for. By the time she realises that she has, Ratty is … well, you need to read the book. I was in love with Ratty for such a long time – but I’m afraid I was unfaithful to him with Justin from All That Mullarkey. The book begins with the writing being on the wall for Cleo’s marriage – it says, ‘This marriage is over. Love Gav’, and it’s on the bedroom wall – and her having a drunken one night stand with Justin, in reaction.  It’s an awkward spot from which to try and save her marriage but she finds that her marriage is founded on a big fat lie, anyway.

Want to Know a Secret? is slightly different in that I throw Diane into a bad situation and make her react to it. She discovers her husband, Gareth, has been living a double life, and it’s not the kind of double life some men are famous for. The theme of the book is: which is most important, money or family? Diane has no money. James, who has a relationship to Gareth that’s too convoluted to go into here, has lots of money but, also, an alcoholic wife and a fragile, self-harming daughter. Then something happens between James and Diane in the back of his Mercedes, which sort of changes everything. But sort of doesn’t.

I’ve also written a writing ‘how to’ book for Accent Press, it’s called Love Writing – How to Make Money Writing Romantic or Erotic Fiction and brings together my experience in writing romantic fiction, my skills as a tutor and my contacts through being a long-term member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association.

Who is your favorite hero/heroine from your books?
I can never answer this question. I love them all. They’re different but equal. Except I love the heroes more than the heroines – or differently, anyway.

What’s coming next from you?
I’m writing a book with a working title of Dream a Little Dream. It’s about Liza, who is the sister of Cleo, from All That Mullarkey. She was far too naughty and sparky to leave as a secondary character, so I rescued her. Unfortunately, she’s had an awful life experience, since All That Mullarkey days. She’s currently butting heads with Dominic, who has had to leave his career as an air traffic control officer as he has been diagnosed with narcolepsy. His marriage has gone down the drain, too, so he’s looking to kind of reinvent himself. It’s an interesting combination!

Any advice for aspiring writers?
I always say two things:
i)    persist. I truly believe that the name for a writer who doesn’t give up is ‘published’. I got some real knockbacks but I didn’t give up and here I am.
ii)    educate yourself. Don’t fall for the line about writers being born and not made. It’s dismissive of our art. Artists, dancers, actors, they all go through years and years of rigorous training and mentoring so it’s unreasonable to suppose that writers don’t to learn their craft. How you choose to learn is up to you. There are courses, classes, books, conferences, forums, talks, magazines … Learn your craft and keep your ear to the ground for market news. Good luck!

1 copy of Love & Freedom
1. Open to all (yes that means international, the whole world)
2. Ends June 27th
3. Just enter or to make it fun
Ask a question, comment on the interview or tell me what you would think about Jared in the role 
(I would love it btw ;)

Love & Freedom was published by Choc Lit on 1 June 2011. You can buy it now or read the first two chapters. And you can listen to a recording of the FREE prequel chapter here.

Check out her website and her blog at for news and writing tips. You’re welcome to befriend Sue on Facebook or Follow her on Twitter.

(psssst: My Flash Fic for the week)


  1. Sounds like it could be a good read!

  2. Love the advice for aspiring writers. Never give up is definitely most important!!

    danaan at gmx dot at

  3. Jared Leto and Julianne Moore - now that would be a movie worth watching! :) I love both of them!

    (Not an entry)

  4. Yay Formula 1!!!! My husband got me addicted to it. I'm not really a big fan of racing in general and was not thrilled when he started watching it, but now that I know all the drivers for the most part I can't stop watching:) Fun interview!

  5. Not sure about Jared...but I love Julianne Moore!!

    mk261274 at gmail dot com

  6. I love the educate yourself advice. I think that is very wise. Thanks for the giveaway!


  7. I love the casting question. How can you go wrong with Jared Leto! Yum!!

    And the book cover is so much fun!

    Thanks for the giveaway!
    missie at

  8. You know... I'd have to see what Jared looks like now and read the book to see if he fits for me. Interesting choice though! I'm curious about your upcoming book. Oh yea! Snark! :)

    books (dot) things (at) yahoo (dot) com

  9. What is your fav F1 TEAM?

    portiabridget at yahoo dot co dot uk

  10. Interesting post! And I am Formula 1 fan too :) I love Jared and wouldn't mind another movie with him in the leading role - and Martyn sounds like a good opportunity

  11. I enjoyed reading this interview! This book sounds really great! Thanks for the chance.

    nancyecdavis AT bellsouth DOT net

  12. Thank you for the interview, really nice to read it all. I loved the review Blodeuedd did of you book, and really want to read it.
    Question: would you go paranormal, or is that just not your thing?

  13. Hi, there! I'm following you on GFC (Darlene), and my email address is darlenesbooknook at gmail dot com. Thanks for the giveaway!

  14. Ohhhh so I vote you should say you come from Germany. And no I'm not biased at all. ;)

    And finally someone who understands me: long lives the stubble. Way more sexy than a beard.

  15. Thank you Sue of the interview :)

  16. @Mary
    It was :)

    I agree, one should never give up

    And he is such a hottie ;)

    I had no idea! I used to watch it cos we won..ok a Finnish driver won. But haven't watch in a long while

    Oh but he is such a good looking guy. Yum

  17. @Margaret
    I do like good advice

    Yay another one for the Jared is yummy line, cos he is so yum

    Yes what does he look like these days. I think he had something red in his hair the last time I saw him

    Can I tell yo mine? :D Mclaren :D Back in the old days

  18. @Host
    I would love to see him in something again too. I did mean to watch this one movie but haven't yet

    Good luck :)

    Awww thanks! You are too sweet

    Hi there, I am glad that you stopped by

    LOL, yes no bias at all.
    Mmm stubble, I agree, stubble kicks ass

  19. Wow. A world traveller before you had reached double digits !

    Do you still love to travel or did all that moving in your formative years out you off ?

    Thanks for the giveaway and for opening it to worldwide entries.

    Carol T

    buddytho {at} gmail DOT com

  20. Great post. I'm ashamed to say I've not heard of this author before but it sounds like she has a few great sounding books out there. No need to enter me though. I don't have enough room for all the books I have. lol.

  21. LOL I'm not a big beard fan either :)

  22. This one sounds wonderful and I lvoe that cover!

  23. The advices are worth keeping in mind.
    Thanks for the giveaway.

  24. This book sounds really good. Thank you for the interview. For me the best parts of a review are the author interviews.

    hootowl1978 at gmail dot com

  25. Thanks for your comments everyone :D Good luck!!!

    Lol, I know that feeling

    Thanks Hoot

  26. Hello Everyone,
    And thank you for commenting on the interview.

    I tend to follow drivers in Formula 1 rather than teams, but two of my favourite drivers - Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton - are in McLaren, so I'm very much in favour of McLaren, right now. Also, the Mercedes engine is made quite near to where I live and I know two of the engine builders.

    Yes, I do still like travelling. I had hoped to be going to America, soon, but family illness is getting in the way of that. My globetrotting childhood certainly didn't put me off.

    Thank you, Blodeuedd, for a lovely review.

    For Jared Leto to play Martyn, he would have to go back to looking something like this:

    Best wishes to all,

  27. This book sounds great! I'd love the chance to read it.

    aikychien at yahoo dot com

  28. I would love to read the book. I have your writing book on my bookshelf, that one would look so cute alongside it.

  29. Love & Freedom sounds like a good read, and nice cover too.
    Nice post! persist and educate yourself is great advice!

  30. Hi everyone :)
    Thanks for entering.

    Oh my. That pic makes me drool, lol

  31. It looks awesome I would love to read it! Im super nuts for romantic novels!!


  32. enter me!
    Followed you via GFC (Florence/ Fantailflo)

    Enter me!

    lorence_f[at] hotmail[dot]com



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