Farmer by Day, Author by Night

Farmer by Day, Author by Night

My family farms 735 acres of arable land in North Essex. This isn’t the TOWIE incarnation of Essex that you see on the telly. It must be an hour’s journey to the nearest chic nightclub (farther if you measure in cultural miles). The pub is a goodly hike and you couldn’t throw a stone to strike the nearest retail outlet, not even if you had olympian capabilities and hurled in the direction the crow flies. This is rural Essex, agricultural Essex. It’s picturesque, and it’s home. In my part of the county, there are country lanes and ancient hamlets, Tudor farmhouses, feather-edged barns and land which unfurls with a lack of drama that is soft on the eye.North EssexI’m romanticising, of course, because that’s what I do when I’m not on a tractor or up to my elbows in nutrient-rich soil (read mud). I write rustic romance. I’m a rural authoress.

I’d like to call it a farm diversification but that wouldn’t be honest. A diversion from farming would be closer to the truth and I fear the husband and son might often have cause to wish I was less, er, diverted. But the writing has grown out of the land that raised me and a childhood which taught me to love the outdoors through the turning seasons and petulant weather. It’s inspired by friendships forged in drafty sheds; by harvest, family dogs, autumn bonfires and cider-fuelled, amorous escapades.bonfireI’m no longer youthful, but when my cheeks are wind-stung and the feet are numb, I’ve still got a romantic world to escape to. It might be winter in Draymere too, there may be mud or even snow, but the characters warm the story (and me) with a wealth of diverting antics. My mind can romp alongside them for hours. Be it out in the fields, on a dog walk or while I’m cooking the dinner, you’ll probably find me at Draymere. I’m seldom present in everyday life.

That’s escapism for you.

I blame Jilly Cooper. She introduced me to the possibilities of jodhpur-clad heroines’ who kicked off their wellies instead of slipping out of stilettoes. And that, my friends, was something of a hallelujah moment, back in the day when I lived in jodhpurs and rarely stepped out in anything other than waterproof boots.WelliesBe it town, village or farm, we all fall in love, and we’ve all experienced passion, heartbreak and unwise attraction. The emotions play out no matter where in the world you live.  But I write it rural, earthy and rustic.

The books are raunchy; I should warn you of that. But, hey, it’s nothing that nature isn’t doing outside my window as I type and, trust me, the countryside is as sexy as hell.

Not convinced? Just spend a weekend at Draymere…

draymerehall (1)  A Bed of Barley Straw Cover RADIANT MEDIUM WEB  A Bed of Brambles Cover MEDIUM WEB

I’m a shouty-shouty author this month – a one-woman band of marketing

I’m a shouty-shouty author this month – a one-woman band of marketing

So… you may not have heard? I’ve got a new book out REALLY SOON.

That question was ironic. If you haven’t heard I’d like to know why not, because I’ve been banging the same tune out for weeks already. Blowing my own trumpet, singing my own praises, whistling into the wind… ok, I’ll stop with the cliches now.

Are you sick of me yet? I know I am. So I’m giving myself a bit of shouty time off. I’ve been playing silly buggers with Movie Maker instead, and today I’m just going to leave you with a little light entertainment. This isn’t marketing, honest (but do let me know if it works!)

ps A Bed of Barley Straw is free on Kindle until the end of play tomorrow… and the new book is out March 3rd (available to pre-order here).

Rural Romance – my Valentine’s Day gift to you

Rural Romance – my Valentine’s Day gift to you

I’m bringing the romance to you today – A Bed of Barley Straw is FREE to download on Kindle from right now until Saturday 18th February. Just click on the picture of me to download your copy!

profile-with-heart-bw-happy-valentines-day

Put up your feet and enjoy! With very best wishes, Sam xx