The wonderful new Lochmore Legacy series is here and we caught up with authors Janice Preston, Lara Temple, Nicole Locke, and Elisabeth Hobbes to find out more about their inspiration for the series, writing historical romance and blossomed friendships!
Janice Preston, His Convenient Highland Wedding, out now
The Lochmore Legacy is a series of four linked books, each one written by a different author and, as you would expect, each book is a standalone romance. Unusually, though, each book is set in a different time period, with the link between them being the Highland setting—Lochmore Castle, which is built on a rocky promontory on a fictional stretch of the west coast of Scotland—two neighbouring clans—the Lochmores and the McCrieffs—the feud that has simmered between them for centuries and a mystery that demands to be solved.
The series has been exciting to write, not only for the opportunity to share a story journey with friends and fellow authors but also because the four stories slowly reveal the answers to that mystery.
The series opens in Victorian times, when a brooch is discovered in strange circumstances—in a twist—each unforgettable romance reveals a little more of that brooch’s secret past as the reader travels back in time through the Regency and Tudor eras to Medieval Scotland, where the truth is finally revealed.
Lara Temple, Unlaced by the Highland Duke, out now
One of the fun challenges of writing a book is world-building. But how do you build a world when not only four authors but also four eras are involved? We had to work together to create a Highland setting and a castle that would live and breathe for all of us even as it changed over time. A medieval castle is very different from a castle renovated during the Victorian era.
In every one of our stories there were elements that were more important. Sometimes it was the crypt, or a sea gate leading down to the beach. Sometimes it was the ballroom or the gardens.
We shared pictures and sketches, talked staircases and seascapes. One of us took a road trip through the Highlands and another drew a marvellous architectural map. And all of us dreamed we were there at Lochmore Castle, watching our wonderful tales unfold.
We hope the wonderful world of The Lochmore Legacy we created together shines through in our stories.
Nicole Locke, Secrets of a Highland Warrior, out on 27th June 2019
But we wanted more than grand settings to entwine the stories! We looked beyond the mystery and the clans by delving into the heart of the characters. There were two red-headed heroines, Flora and Ailsa, and we loved using the colour orange—reflective of their hair—to bind the stories. We also looked to the brooch and made it more personable, with a clasp that was stiff. Then there was the word ‘always’. It wasn’t enough for us that there was a happily-ever-after in each book. We wanted love to resonate across the centuries. To be for ‘always’.
Elisabeth Hobbes, A Runaway Bride for the Highlander, out on 30th May 2019
Writing can be a lonely process: one person cranking out words to bring other people to life. What readers might not realise is just how sociable it can actually be. Real friendships are forged in chatrooms and Facebook groups, such as The Unlaced Historical Romance Group, where we all originally came together as authors to share our love of historical romance.
As well as organisations such as The Romantic Novelists’ Association, in which writers can meet other writers, there is a vast online community, and romance writers are a very supportive bunch. Every day online there are dozens of examples of women from different backgrounds supporting and praising each other, working together to fix plot holes, share knowledge, unearth facts—and of course provide pictures for hero inspiration.
The four authors of The Lochmore Legacy are separated by continents, but the bond we have formed is as strong as any in real life, and if readers enjoy discovering the series as much as we enjoyed writing it that is testament to the power of female friendship.
Can’t wait to start reading The Lochmore Legacy Series? Read on more info:
1st book in The Lochmore Legacy Series
2nd book in The Lochmore Legacy Series
3rd book in The Lochmore Legacy Series
4th book in The Lochmore Legacy Series
Secrets Of A Highland Warrior by Nicole Locke is out on 27th June 2019!