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Well I honestly haven’t been sulking all that time: my lengthy absence from these pages is for a ‘proper’ reason and I was going to describe it vaguely as ‘personal’ but starting a blog where you admit to reading and aspiring to writing Mills and Boon romances is as personal as you can get! So basically, my dear grandma, who has not been well for a long time, fairly suddenly passed away a few weeks ago. Therefore, I haven’t really felt like keeping up with the New Voices Competition or doing any writing of my own because everything always seems a little futile and meaningless immediately after a significant death, doesn’t it?

On the day of the funeral I met a man who came along to pay his respects at the wake. He worked driving the community mobile library around the rural area in which my grandparents live; this service being particularly aimed at elderly people with limited mobility like my gran. The library man had some lovely stories about the many times he’d stopped in for a cup of tea and my grandma had spoken about different aspects of her life, some of which were news to me and my dad. It was wonderfully touching to hear a stranger talk so affectionately about my gran and to admit he was compelled to break the library rules for her! I always knew she enjoyed Mills and Boon; she gave me my first book when I was a teenager and I was hooked from then on. It is basically because of her that I am even writing this blog now. 

Back to gran  – so rapacious was she as a Mills and Boon reader that the usual limit of library books was exceeded every week: grandma got through 14 Mills and Boon a week! What a legend! That is my gran for reading them and the library man for flouting the rules in order to supply them! His hushed admission about this has inspired me to persevere and dedicate my first published work to Dorothy, my grandma and it seemed fitting to write this blog in honour of her memory.

So Mills and Boon, watch this space – The Sheik’s Virgin Racing Bride may be bomeranging back at you!

p.s. I have read the winning entry of the New Voices competition. It is certainly an interesting choice, in my opinion. Quite a modern and less than romantic concept of speed dating, well written but I didn’t feel any sparkle from it. Best of luck to the author nonetheless!