Announcement! New blog!

If you enjoy the posts here on A Keyboard and an Open Mind, don’t worry, it’s not going anywhere. WWW Wednesday and the twice-weekly book reviews will still happen as usual.

What’s changing is I’m taking my writing somewhere else. I thought about it, and I realised that amongst all the reviewer-type posts, any focus this blog once had on my writing has disappeared. WIPpet Wednesday is really the only time it gets to shine, and when I combine it with WWW Wednesday, it only gets a certain amount of the glory.

So I’d like to invite you to visit Letting the Voices Out, where I’ll be posting WIPpet Wednesday posts, as well as other posts on writing. At the moment, I’m doing the Story a Day in May challenge, trying to come up with some ideas for a sequel to With Memories and Magic. My intention is to post twice a week regularly, with some kind of reflective post on a Sunday. I’ll see how that goes.

I hope to see you there!

Release Day Interview With Crown Prince Felipe and Princess Caitlin

This is by far the strangest thing I have ever written. My brain can’t cope with too much meta, but because today is the release day for A More Complicated Fairytale, I thought I would try my hand at writing something like this. It was weird, but fun.

AMCFTsmallWe’re sitting in the library in the Palace of Nardowyn. It’s a room I know well, as Cait and Felipe spent many of their early meetings in here. The word “library” is a bit of a misnomer, though; “museum” would be more accurate, since as well as the many shelves of books, there are cabinets and glass cases lining the walls, full of rare artefacts collected by the Royal Family over the generations.

Cait and Felipe are sharing a sofa across from me. Between us is a coffee table, which always seemed to have a couple of books lying on it, though that number has increased since Cait has been living in the palace and making the most of full-time access to this room. Felipe has his cane leaning on the arm of the sofa next to him; his war injury is continually improving, but there are still times when the cane is required.

“Thank you for meeting with me today,” I say, and they both nod in acknowledgment, smiling. “It’s been a while since I’ve spent any proper time with the two of you. How is married life treating you?”

They glance at each other, making a quick, silent decision about who will answer the question. “It’s been wonderful,” Cait says. “Marrying into the royal family was a terrifying prospect, but everyone has been very welcoming.”

“And I believe you’ve got some news to share?”

Another glance. Felipe slips his arm around Cait’s shoulders. Wide smiles spread over both their faces.

“We’re expecting a child in August,” Felipe says.

“Congratulations,” I reply. “I’m sure he’ll be a wonderful addition to the family.”

Felipe tilts his head at me. “He? It will be a boy, then?”

Dammit, self, don’t give your characters foreknowledge of major life events. That never works out well.

“That’s all for the next book,” I say quickly. “We’re here to discuss the first one.”

Felipe gives me a sideways look, but he doesn’t press the issue.

“So, how does it feel having the story of your romance out in the world?”

“I’m not sure I was always presented in the best light,” Felipe remarks.

“Well, you can blame Cait for that. It’s from her point-of-view.”

“I was always perfectly charming toward Cait.”

Cait rolls her eyes and grins. “You were an entitled prat at the start.”

Felipe puts on his best wounded expression and claps one hand across his heart. “Cait. It hurts me when you say things like that.”

Cait rolls her eyes again and laughs. She pulls his hand away from his chest. She rests her hand on his knee, still holding his.


This is a screencap from Phantom of the Opera, but it’s the picture that most matches Cait and Felipe in my mind.

“Anyway,” she says. “I think it tells the story very faithfully, and I’m glad you’ve done so much work in putting it all together.”

“Thanks, Cait.”

“But what’s next for you?” she asks. “Are you going to be staying here or are your next projects taking you farther afield?”

“Well, I’ve got a few projects on the go. I definitely won’t be leaving Nardowyn for good. Ginny’s going to be getting up to a few things in a few years’ time.”

“What sort of things?” Cait’s eyes narrow at me suspiciously at the mention of her sister as the central character in a new story.

“Don’t worry, I promise I’ll bring her home safely at the end.”

“You’d better.”

By the point, the conversation is starting to get a bit too meta for me to get my head around. I stand to go and give a small bow.

“Your Highnesses, thank you for letting me visit you here today. I’ll keep you posted on the status of the book.”

Cait and Felipe stand up to see me out of the library. When we reach the large wooden doors, Cait says, “Thanks once again,” and I turn and smile.

“You’re very welcome,” I reply, and then step out the door. They close behind me and I am left with the task of finding someone who can help me navigate my way out of this labyrinth of a palace.

Don’t forget, you can now purchase A More Complicated Fairytale from the Amazon Kindle store (link to the American site, but it available pretty much everywhere, I think). It’s also on GoodReads if you want to keep it on your radar but not quite ready to buy it just yet.

#WWW and #WIPpet Wednesday – 16 March 2016

First up today, some really exciting news! The cover reveal for my novel, A More Complicated Fairytale, was yesterday. If you missed it, you can go sneak a peek here. If anyone fancies a review copy, let me know your email address and preferred format and I’ll send you one. Or if you’re like me and sometimes prefer to pay for a book because then you’ll feel less bad if you don’t like it, you can pre-order the ebook here. You can also mark it as to-read on Goodreads!

Onto more regular Wednesday things, next up is is WWW Wednesday, a blog hop in which we answer questions about what we’ve been reading this past week. This is hosted by Sam over at A World of Words. You can join in by commenting on today’s post over on her blog.

  • What are you currently reading?

Finally, after having it on my Kindle for goodness knows how long, I am reading Chameleon in a Mirror by fellow WIPpeteer, Ruth Nestvold. I only started it today so I am not very far in, but I am definitely enjoying it so far, especially the descriptions of the 17th Century theatre.

I’ve also got back into the Doctor Who audio books, and am listening to The Blood Cell by James Goss. It’s a bit different to most of these novels, in that it’s got a first person narration from a secondary character’s POV. It does mean we’re a bit distanced from the Doctor, but it’s not too bad. I’m about 30% in and things are picking up a bit.


  • What did you recently finish reading?

I read a lot this week! Firstly, I finished Life in Outer Space by Melissa Keil. It was a really cute book, though the love interest, Camilla, did strike me as a bit Manic Pixie Dream Girl, which annoyed me a bit. Review goes up on Friday.

I spent Friday night reading Unmasking: Lemon’s Thesis by Gloria Weber. This is the start of a fun superheroes series, and I recommend it! My review is here.

I was trawling through Borrow Box trying to find an audio book to listen to and found Animal Farm, read by Simon Callow. I didn’t enjoy it as much as 1984, but I appreciated what Orwell was doing. I had it in my head that each animal in the book represented a different political ideology, rather than the whole thing being an allegory for Stalinism, so it wasn’t quite what I expected.

And then, over Sunday and Monday (we had a long weekend here), I finished Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn. I’ve got to admit, while it was pretty good, it didn’t really feel like a thriller to me, more a standard crime novel.

  • What do you think you’ll read next?

I’m hoping to read The Bloodshade Encounters/The Songspinner, which combined make up Book 2 of the Shadeborn series by K. C. Finn, and then move onto The Potioneer, which is Book 3. I reviewed Book 1 back in January. Captive Prince by C. S. Pacat also arrived at the library for me today, but I’d like to finish some of these ebooks first.  I also picked up two other Doctor Who audios, as I decided to start at the start of the 11th Doctor ones and work through them. My library has at least the first five, so I’m hoping they have a lot of them.

Also, my library has A Gathering of Shadows by V. E. Schwab on order! And guess who is at the top of the queue for it? Meeeeeeeeee! Not that this means I will get to read it in the next week, I just wanted to squee.

wednesdaybanner Next up is WIPpet Wednesday, a blog hop we writer types do each week, in which we share snippets from our WIP that somehow relate to the date. You can find our linkup by clicking the little blue guy to the right. I’m sharing three lines for the third month. This follows on from last week; Jasper is being interrogated by Eli Masden.

“Would I be correct in assuming that it is you and your associates that the Princess has had dealings with in the past?”

“Is the Princess in the business of running away? I would have thought you’d have a better eye on her than that. Especially as it seems the King’s laws regarding magic are rather lax around here.”

Out of the corner of his eye, Jasper saw Helena cringe and look down at her hands. She always did object when he used sarcasm, and he supposed she would consider him using it here to be worse than usual.

That’s it from me this week! Let’s see if the new goals I set myself at the start of this week regarding blogging will mean that I actually get to your blogs this week! Fingers crossed.

~ Emily

Cover Reveal: A More Complicated Fairytale by… Me!

Over three years after I started writing it, it’s nearly time to unleash my baby on the world. My first novel, A More Complicated Fairytale, will hopefully be launched on April 02. I’m in the midst of setting up a pre-order. I will, of course, share the link when it’s available.

Those of you who have been reading my blog for a long time will have read plenty of snippets from AMCF over the last couple of years. For those who haven’t, you can acquaint yourselves with Cait and Prince Felipe here.

For those who just need a quick refresher, here’s the blurb:

Most of the young women in Nardowyn swoon over Crown Prince Felipe, but Caitlin has never seen the appeal. When she catches his eye during a royal festival, she has little choice but to begrudgingly go along with his attempts to form a friendship between them, and soon learns that there is more to him than meets the eye.

When Felipe goes to war to avenge the death of his brother, Cait enlists as a nurse to be nearer to him. Here, Cait’s connection to the prince will put her in more danger than she can imagine. But Cait’s never been one to take the easy way out, so if her life is going to turn into some sort of fairy tale, with a prince and a happily ever after, it’s no surprise it will be a more complicated one.

And now, the moment you’ve all been waiting for, here is the cover in all its glory:


This thing of beauty was designed by the wonderful K. L. Schwengel and I am forever in her debt..

Stay tuned over the next couple of weeks for giveaways, interviews, and more!

~ Emily