We caught up with Louisa George to talk about all things medical romance; what it’s like writing for Mills & Boon; and the experience of working with Georgia Toffolo on Meet Me in London! Louisa’s next series title The Princess’s Christmas Baby is out in December – read on to find out more!
Your next book will be The Princess’s Christmas Baby – can you tell us some more about it?
Ooh, I loved writing this book! It’s about a stern ER doctor hero who lives in Seattle and is far too busy for romance, and the tearaway princess of a Mediterranean island who has a bruised heart. After a brief fling ends with them both agreeing anything long term or long-distance is off the cards, Gigi discovers she’s pregnant. Gigi and Lucas then have to negotiate how they’re going to manage the ‘baby situation’ whilst struggling with an undeniable attraction that neither of them want, amidst a royal family crisis! It’s a lovely Christmassy, heart-melting read!
Here’s the official back cover blurb:
A pregnant princess…and her knight in shining scrubs? When a forbidden and oh-so passionate weekend together leads to a very unexpected consequence, Dr. Lucas Beaufort and Princess ‘Gigi’ Baresi’s lives are turned upside down. So, when a car crash leaves Gigi’s father – the King! – with his life hanging in the balance, she’ll have to decide: duty to the crown, or claim the family and love she’s always wanted…
I had a blast! It was awesome to meet Georgia, the other co-authors and the editorial team involved in the project. As I live in New Zealand, we had to negotiate time zones for any meetings, but thanks to the wonders of technology I was able to Zoom in and talk to everyone as though we were all in the same room.
We had lots of fun brainstorming the storylines and details of the friendship between the four heroines who feature in the series. The details and stories from Toff were wonderful and, given that they are true stories of her friendship group, really brought the girls to life. She worked with the editorial team every step of the way and I think it shows. We all had a similar vision, I think, of writing books about strong women and the wonderful female friendships that help so many of us through the challenges and celebrations in life. Even though they live in different cities…different continents even, Victoria, Zoe, Malie and Lily share a tight bond after a very difficult tragedy and their friendship is filled with support for each other and lots of fun.
It’s always fun to brainstorm heroes 😉 but I think we’ve done ourselves proud with Oliver, Finn, Todd and Henry. *Sigh*
Can you tell us a bit about how you came to write for Mills & Boon?
I’ve always written stories and poems and completed a couple of creative writing courses, but never thought I was good enough to become a real-life writer. About ten years ago I decided I’d be brave and entered one of the Mills & Boon Medical Romance Fast Track competitions. A week or so later I received a lovely email from an editor saying my submission wasn’t quite what they wanted, but could I rework, revise and resubmit? Which I did!
After another eight months of rewriting and back and forth emails I eventually received a message from the editor saying she’d like to call me for a chat. I knew from other authors that this could mean one of two things; ‘The Call’ to offer me a contract or just a general conversation about ideas for the manuscript.
I emailed back to say yes, please call me…but I was going to be on holiday and may be out of phone range so please keep trying.
Imagine my excitement when I was having dinner on a beach on a Fijian island as the sun was setting, torch flames flickering in the gentle breeze, when my phone buzzed with a UK number. My hands were shaking so much I could hardly pick up the phone. I was so thrilled when my editor offered me a two-book contract, I couldn’t believe it. To this day I can’t remember anything of what she said after ‘two-book contract’ and am sure I made a complete fool of myself by stammering and stuttering and (possibly) screeching!
How has the experience of working as a nurse shaped your writing?
I was a nurse for 22 years and worked in a variety of medical settings, so this has certainly been beneficial for writing medical romance and giving authenticity to my stories. I think, too, though that it has given me an understanding of how people react in extremis; the stoicism and bravery and the way people handle emotions. I hope this comes through in my writing. (For privacy and confidentiality reasons I have never written about actual cases I dealt with, but some of my experiences have been fuel for scenarios in my books).
What are you working on now and what can we expect next from you?
I’m just putting the finishing touches to a medical romance called The Nurses’ One-Night Baby Surprise (release date TBA). It is the third book in a series I have been writing set in the Lake District in a fictional village called Oakdale. I absolutely love the Lakes and have spent lots of happy holidays there, so it seemed fitting that I set books there too.
The Nurses’ One-Night Baby Surprise follows single dad Fraser Moore and nemesis Briana Barclay as they overcome many challenges and obstacles to find their happy ever after. I do love writing enemies-to-lovers books, there’s always such a lot of emotion.
I adore writing series because we can really get to know the characters and meet them over and over – they become like family.
Who is your favourite romantic hero?
The one I am writing at any given moment! I always fall in love with my heroes.
However, I have to say I fell totally and hopelessly for Jamie Fraser in Outlander.
What are your plans for Christmas this year?
We will be staying at home in Auckland and hopefully having our sons and their girlfriends for the day. (Oldest, Sam lives in Manchester, UK and we are hoping he can get out here for the holidays. Youngest lives up the road so he’ll be here!)
Do you have any particular Christmas traditions?
We emigrated to New Zealand 18 years ago and I still can’t get used to Christmas in the heat. Most of my friends here do a barbecue, but I always do the full-on roast turkey and trimmings. The only difference to UK is that we eat outside in the sunshine.
Boxing Day is always a game of touch rugby with friends and their children, then we host a barbecue at our house.
Because Christmas here is in the summer holidays, we have a week’s camping in January, up north by the beach with 7 other families, which is always lots of fun (weather permitting!)
I love hearing from readers, so please pop over to my website and say hi!