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Tag Archives: The Unlacing of Miss Leigh

Wow. What a lot of new announcements for the Riskies in the last week. New books by Janet and Amanda, and our new RITA nominees, Carolyn and Amanda. And it seems like just yesterday that Amanda was announcing her new Laurel McKee release!

Well, I didn’t want to be UNDONE by Amanda, Janet and Carolyn. I have my own news!

Remember last year at this time I announced the release of my Undone eStory, The Unlacing of Miss Leigh? I’m announcing it again. The news is, The Unlacing of Miss Leigh is one of the stories available in the new Harlequin Historical anthology, Pleasurably Undone, now available as a mass market paperback in your bookstore. This is the first print anthology of the Harlequin Historical Undone stories.

We’ve featured my anthology mates before: Louise Allen, Terri Brisbin, and new RITA finalist, Michelle Willingham. (We’ll invite Christine soon). These ladies and I recently made an appearance on the Borders True Romance blog. You can read our interview here.

The Unlacing of Miss Leigh is my unabashed homage to The Phantom of the Opera (the Gerard Butler version, of course). Graham Veall, a disfigured and masked Penisular war veteran, advertises for female companionship, and Margaret Leigh, a virginal vicar’s daughter, answers the ad. When Margaret agrees to spend two months with Graham, it is not for the money she desperately needs. Will Margaret help heal Graham’s wounded spirit? (You have to buy Pleasurably Undone to find out.)

Or comment on this blog! I’ll give away one signed copy of Pleasurably Undone to one lucky commenter chosen at random.

Something else new with me!

I’m starting my own personal blog……. Why? you ask.

I really enjoy blogging here at Risky Regencies and I won’t give that up! I just thought it would be fun to branch out a little. Try different things and have even more fun. My wonderful webmistresses at Waxcreative have made it so my blog will appear on my website. Isn’t that grand?

My blog launches this Wednesday, March 31, at my website. For the month of April I’ll be blogging every Wednesday and Friday. And every Wednesday and Friday in April there will be a contest, each time the prize being a book. You’ll see more of me and more of my Pleasurably Undone anthology mates.

I also have a special theme planned for the April blogs. Stop by to see!

I am so hoping my Risky friends will visit me at the new blog. Help me build another “community” as lovely as the one we have here. You can test out how to get there by clicking on my pretty little graphic!

Blogging at

What do you like to see in a blog?
What topics are your favorites?
Who are some of your favorites?
I need to know these things!!

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My Christmas wish came true! (possibly because I copied the url and emailed it to my husband, saying, “I want this for Christmas.”) I received the Book Collector software and bar scanner. (thanks to Diane Whiteside who told me about this software)

This is really cool and easy to use. You can enter the data in a variety of ways: by swiping the barcode on the back of the book (most new books have this), by entering ISBN, or, if there is no ISBN, the title and/or author. And if that doesn’t bring up the book automatically, then you can enter the data yourself. The database they have for books is HUGE so there aren’t many I’ve had to enter all the data myself.

Here’s what the screen of the database looks like:

Here is the barcode scanner, called a “Cue Cat,” perfect for me! It attaches to the computer by that wire.

I’ve put 129 books into my database so far, including the top two shelves on the left in this photo:

But I have sooooo much more to do!

You may have guessed; this is my infamous “Book Room.” Amanda has seen it (and survived). Most of the books on those shelves are double-shelved. Please, you librarians among us, do not have a fit of vapors!

More good news for me! The Unlacing of Miss Leigh was one of the top ten best selling ebooks at Waterstone’s, the big UK book vendor. I even beat out a book by Stephanie Meyer!

Have you been playing with any Christmas toys like I have? Tell us!

To Do List – Week of April 27

1. Write Risky Regencies Blog

2. Begin promotion of The Diamonds of Welbourne Manor with Amanda and Deb
Prepare blog for eHarlequin, Romance Readers at Heart, Romance Vagabonds, Word Wenches (and maybe more!)

3. Write Update information for website (write Behind The Book, Newsletter, new Contest, News, etc.)

4. Read for Critique Group Wednesday (est. 150 pages)

5. Complete second set of revisions for Soldiers Trilogy Book One

6. Begin judging Royal Ascot contest

7. Check eHarlequin eBooks to see if The Unlacing of Miss Leigh is still Number One.

8. Order a carton of The Diamonds of Welbourne Manor

9. Send out promotional material as promised.

10. Write 50 pages of Soldiers Trilogy Book Two.

What do you think? Will I get it all done?

What’s on your To Do List this week????

Keep The Unlacing of Miss Leigh on eHarlequin’s eBook bestseller list!! Order your copy through my website. Run to your bookstore on May 1 (or 2 or 3) and see if The Diamonds of Welbourne Manor is on the shelves. Tell us if it has a shelf talker! One has already been spotted at a Walmart!

I’m obsessed by food…
The reason? I’m back on my diet after months of uncontrolled eating that included jelly beans, skittles, pretzels, triskets, and whatever else I wanted to eat. The result? Gaining back all I’d lost last year and then some.

I’ve been reading about different kinds of diets, even though I know I’ll go back to using to count calories. I was reminded of Lord Byron making a vinegar diet all the rage. I never believed the vinegar story. I thought that was something he just made up. The following reminiscence of Samuel Rogers supported that idea:

When we sat down to dinner, I asked Byron if he would take soup ? ” No ; he never took soup.”—Would he take some fish ? ” No ; he never took fish.”— Presently I asked if he would eat some mutton ? ” No ; he never ate mutton.”—I then asked if he would take a glass of wine ? ” No ; he never tasted wine.”—It was now necessary to inquire what he did eat and drink ; and the answer was, ” Nothing but hard biscuits and soda-water.” Unfortunately, neither hard biscuits nor soda-water were at hand ; and he dined upon potatoes bruised down on his plate and drenched with vinegar.—My guests stayed till very late, discussing the merits of Walter Scott and Joanna Baillie.—Some days after, meeting Hobhouse, I said to him, ” How long will Lord Byron persevere in his present diet ? ” He replied, “Just as long as you continue to notice it.”—I did not then know, what I now know to be a fact,— that Byron, after leaving my house, had gone to a Club in St. James’s Street and eaten a hearty meat- supper. Reminiscences and Table-talk of Samuel Rogers

This fits perfectly with my impression of Lord Byron as being narcissistic and needing to call attention to himself.

But it turns out Byron suffered the same struggles as I’m facing. He was taller than I imagined at 5’10” and his weight fluctuated between 133 pounds, which sounds very thin (this is not like me), to 200 pounds (I’m not there yet). His battle with weight began when he entered Cambridge. In 1811 he began using cider vinegar to lose weight. Turns out Hippocrates used vinegar as a health tonic, so Byron’s use of it was not original.

Throughout his life Byron alternated between severely restricted eating to gorging himself. He most certainly had an eating disorder. In 1816, when in Switzerland with the Shelleys, his diet was:

A thin slice of bread, with tea, at breakfast — a light, vegetable dinner, with a bottle or two of Seltzer water, tinged with vin de Grave, and in the evening, a cup of green tea, without milk or sugar, formed the whole of his sustenance. The pangs of hunger he appeased by privately chewing tobacco and smoking cigars.

His diet may have been a factor in his death. He experienced a “fit” which he believed could be prevented by a strict diet of toast, vegetables, and cheese. Instead it may have weakened him.

I certainly will not be following such a rigid diet. I record my eating at and stay within their caloric guidelines.

Byron did have advice for women dieting. He said:

A woman should never be seen eating or drinking, unless it be lobster salad and Champagne, the only true feminine and becoming viands.

Lobster salad and champagne??
I am sooo there.

This Wednesday The Unlacing of Miss Leigh, my Undone eShort Story, will be available at Get it now!

Keira reminded me I should say that The Diamonds of Welbourne Manor will be available on on Weds, April 1. They always release a month early for mail order.

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