I'm so glad you've found my blog! This is where I share what's going in my life, and where you'll usually find the most up-to-date information on my latest releases. For more detailed information on my books, check out my backlist. And be sure to check out my contest page so you don't miss out!



Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Exciting news

My website is having a makeover. 

The wonderful Heather at hrwebconcepts.com has been busily working on it and any time now it will change.  It's in one of my favourite colours so keep checking.

I hope you'll all love it as much as I do.

Sunday, 15 May 2011


I've just spent a few computerless days away and was disappointed to see that no one had entered this second week of my contest - so I'm going to run the same question this week.

Where did Blake whisk Kara to in my book A NIGHT WITH CONSEQUENCES?  Or - different question, same answer - in which country was the conference held where Blake took his PA?  The answer can be found here on my website.

A copy of this book  is the prize for the winner - so you know what they say - you have to be in it to win it.

I'm now going to look forward to a whole rush of answers...   Send them here

BIG MISTAKE!  I think my mind was on other things when I checked for contest entrants.  I've found you - those who entered.  But as there were only a couple of entries I'm going to add your names to this week's list.  And then I'll pick two winners so all will be fair.

Monday, 9 May 2011

1st week May contest

And the winner is...


Congratulations, Lacey.  My DH picked your name out of the hat (well, a little plastic bowl actually but a hat sounds so much nicer) - so if you'd like to email me your address I'll make sure a copy of A NIGHT WITH CONSEQUENCES will soon be on its way to you.

Commiserations to those of you who didn't win but you can always enter again for the second week of my contest.  This time the question is: 

Where does Blake take Kara for a few days holiday?  As before the answer can be found on my website - http://www.margaret-mayo.com/

Good luck everyone!

Friday, 6 May 2011

Foto Friday

I couldn't resist snapping these unfolding ferns in my garden this week.  I know they're not terribly good photos but I think ferns are so pretty at this stage.

And a reminder - it's the last day for entering this week's contest.

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Contest answers

I forgot to mention that all answers to my question should be emailed to me at margaret_mayo@yahoo.co.uk

Thanks to Lacey for pointing it out.

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Contest 1

Well, wasn't the royal wedding fabulous?  I was glued to the television the whole morning on Friday.  And then I went to the local garden party.  Very few people guessed who had painted the postcards.  Most got none right.  Quite a few got one.  And one lucky person managed five.  Neverthless it was a lot of fun.

So - to my May contest.

Four books, four weeks.

This week's question is - What are the christian names of my heroine and hero in my new book A NIGHT WITH CONSEQUENCES which is in the shops now in the UK.  The answers can be found on the books page of my website - http://www.margaret-mayo.com/

At the moment my website is being updated - by the lovely Heather at hr web concepts but I think you'll still be able to access it.  If not then I'll happily extend the contest time.  I'm quite excited about the new look it's going to get and can't wait for you all to see it.

Wednesday, 27 April 2011

This and that

I missed wishing everyone a Happy Easter because my computer was playing up.  But I do hope you all enjoyed it and didn't eat too many easter eggs! 

I've been busy trying to sort out Rafe and Holly because they're not particularly behaving themselves.  And I've also painted a 'picture on a postcard' for a fun competition being held at our local pub for Prince William and Kate's wedding.  A garden party is planned with all sorts of events (as well as big screens for the occasion of course) and my art group is having a display of paintings.  The postcards won't have our names on and people are going to be asked to pair them up with the original artists.  It will be fun to see if anyone gets them all right.

At the beginning of May I'm going to be running a new contest to win copies of my latest book A NIGHT WITH CONSEQUENCES.  So do keep a look out for that.  I have four books to give away and I shall pose a different question each week during the month.

Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Heroes and blood pressure

Some time ago I told you I was having my blood pressure monitored and I blamed it on my current hero.  Well, the machine stopped working so I've had to wait until now when they had solved the problem to have it checked again.  And - good news - it's fine.  Poor Rafe didn't send it as high as I'd thought. 

Actually I'm having to re-write the first chapters of my current book again.  My editor pointed things out and as usual she is right.  But at least it means I get to spend more time with my hunky hero.  I'm really getting to know this guy. 

But I mustn't talk about him too much because I can feel my blood pressure rising...........

Monday, 18 April 2011


We've had beautiful weather again over the weekend and it seems set to continue for a further day or two.  DH and I did some tidying up in the garden yesterday - it's amazing how a combination of sunshine and rain has made the weeds grow quicker than the plants.  We have one or two shrubs that have died because of our harsh winter and have had to dig them out.  We waited and waited to see if they would spring back to life - but no such luck. 

We have fish as well but luckily all of them survived - every time we go near the pond now they pop up their heads and ask for food.

And today is not going to be a writing day either as I'm going to the hairdressers this morning and then helping a friend sort out a new card programme on her computer this afternoon.  So poor Holly and Rafe will have to wait a little longer before I join them again.

Friday, 15 April 2011

Foto Friday

A few years ago my DH and I spent Christmas in a hotel in Ilfracombe on the north Devon coast. And so on Boxing Day morning we set off on a three hour trek along a coastal footpath with the Atlantic Ocean crashing on the shore far below.  It was a cold but beautiful day and we thoroughly enjoyed it.  We ended up at a tiny pub with open fires and a festival atmosphere.  But I couldn't face the thought of another three hour walk back - it's not as though it was all on the level - so we returned to our hotel by taxi.  It was an experience I shall never forget, though.  Our one and only time when Christmas hasn't been spent with the family.

And why am I thinking of Christmas when summer is on the horizon?  When my H&H are in sunny Spain?  I just love looking at old photographs, though, don't you?

Wednesday, 13 April 2011


We've had lovely weather here these last few days but now it's gone cold. It's actually the right temperature for the time of year, but we've been lulled into thinking that summer was coming early. So I'm cocooned in my study with the central heating going full blast trying to write about sunny Spain. The picture's in my mind, but when I glance out of the window there are grey skies and not much else.

Thank goodness for imagination, that's what I say.

Monday, 11 April 2011


Every now and then I give myself a computer free weekend. This was one of them. We've had our eldest grandson to stay and we've been out and about so I didn't really miss it until last night when he'd gone home. I found it very hard not to come into my study and press the switches and turn on the screen, then sign in....

But somehow I managed it - and it's now eleven in the morning and I've just switched on. After a sunny and hot weekend it's still unseasonally warm outside so I have washing on the line and my DH is out there doing some garden maintenance - which is never ending. He's actually taken over some of the weeding which was always my domain. Leaving me more time to write. More time to sit on my butt at the computer - and get fat!

Actually I'm down to my lowest weight in a long time. I'm only one stone heavier than before I had the children over forty years ago. So I'm feeling pretty good about myself.

Back to the writing.....

Thursday, 7 April 2011

Foto Friday

Wildlife today. Enjoy!

Wednesday, 6 April 2011


I've taken my H&H off to Spain - though I'm not sure of the exact location yet. It's a business trip so it will need to be near to one of the big cities. I'm open to suggestions....

Monday, 4 April 2011

Health risk!

I've been to the doctors this morning because I've been monitoring my blood pressure for the last month as it was on the high side. And now I'm going to have to wear a monitoring system for 24 hours to give a more accurate reading - and then they will probably decide to increase the dosage of my tablets.

I think it's my sexy heroes who make my blood pressure rise. I cannot think of anything else. I had no idea writing romance was a health risk!

But Rafe is enough to send any woman's BP sky high. Here's a reminder of what he looks like.

Thursday, 31 March 2011

Foto Friday

I'm taking you to Wales again today. You've probably realised by now that it's one of my favourite places to visit - that's because it's only an hour's drive before we're across the border. Then another couple of hours and you're on the west coast. It has stunning countryside - and lots of sheep! I think the ones on the first photograph are heading for a confrontation, don't you? It's not uncommon to find sheep on the road - and they have priority! They're never in a hurry to move.

Tuesday, 29 March 2011


Have you ever been totally busy and then cannot think what you have done that has taken up all of your time? Well, the last few days have been like that for me. I've either been out dining with friends, giving a dinner party for another friend for her birthday, finishing off the curtains in the bedroom, or trying to find time to write. The bedroom's finished now and very nice it looks too. The first three chapters of my revised book have made their way to my editor, so it's fingers crossed while I wait to hear. I've finished a painting I've been working on for ages and prepared the background for another one which is to be a birthday present for a relative. So I'm finally feeling on top of things. The sun's shining as well today so that's a bonus. How has your last week been?

Tuesday, 22 March 2011


My hero and heroine finally have names. My gorgeous hero is now known as Rafe. I just kept looking at him pinned up on my wall and one day he told me his name.

And my heroine (aka Keira Knightley) is no longer Eve. She is Holly. I have a beautiful photograph of her that I tore out of a magazine. I think it was taken at the recent awards because she has her hair short.

They look a perfect couple.

Monday, 21 March 2011


I spent all day yesterday shortening the new curtains for our bedroom. Correction! I shortened one pair. (There are two windows in the room). Thinking it would save time I'd bought ready-made curtains - in the past I've always made them myself. They weren't cheap, they had a designer label on them, but believe me they were not well made. The hems were wavy, and one curtain was over an inch longer than the other - which I didn't discover until I compared them after cutting the same amount off each and finding they weren't the same length.

I still have the other pair to do. And I don't plan to interrupt my writing time with sewing, so they might have to wait until next weekend. Except that they're still sitting on the dining room table - waiting!!! Looking at me!!! Telling me to get on with them!!!

I don't care. I'm in an Italian restaurant with my hero and heroine at the moment. It's far more enjoyable.

Thursday, 17 March 2011


I forgot to mention that the hardback covers are now blue also - matching the new-style paperbacks. Pink has gone.
My earliest hardbacks had loose covers but those disappeared in 1983 and the covers then matched the paperbacks which were all different colours.
Then in 1996 came the pink covers which have reigned ever since, though they did change the style slightly in 2008.
It's interesting to see the changes over the years.

Monday, 14 March 2011


I've had two deliveries of books this morning. My new book A NIGHT WITH CONSEQUENCES (May 2011 in the UK) - both the hardback and the paperback copies. Usually I get the hardback first so it's exciting to see them both together. They smell nice, they look nice, and they sure are going to look nice on my shelves.

In the other parcel was a Japanese edition of MARRIED AGAIN TO THE MILLIONAIRE. I'll put the cover up on Friday - it's very beautiful. I feel so sad that a beautiful cover has come at such a time when so much tragedy is happening over there.

Friday, 11 March 2011


I thought you might like to take a look at the inspiration for my latest hero. In the flesh his name is Matt Bomer, in my book his temporary name is Adam. I'm waiting for the right name to come along.

Tuesday, 8 March 2011


I'm being good, this week I've started using my treadmill again. I was feeling lethargic and heavy after the winter and eating all the wrong kinds of food. The weight I'd lost last year was creeping back on so I decided to do something about it. Even after only two days I'm feeling revitalised. And surely it must help my brain - get the creative juices flowing faster?

The treadmill is in my study so I'm keeping it plugged in ready for action, no excuse then. At the moment I'm doing ten minutes after my morning's writing session, and then ten again when I finish for the day. The plan is to increase it to fifteen minutes each time. A half hour of exercise per day for five days a week is our government's recommended exercise plan. I wonder if I'll ever manage half an hour all in one go?

How many of you have started exercising again after the winter? Or have you not been a couch potato like me?

Monday, 7 March 2011

Decorating and writing

We've finally finished decorating our bedroom. I'm not sure whether my DH was unhappyor not when I didn't like the first coat of paint he put on. It was so much paler than I had expected. But, bless him, he didn't complain and once I'd chosen another colour he brushed that on the walls and now I'm happy - except that it looks a bit pinker than I'd thought - but I daren't say anything more. And it's growing on me. We're back in the room and all I need now is new curtains - it's proving a bit tricky to find a coordinating colour. At least we have blinds, so there's no rush.

And as this blog's supposed to be about writing I have to tell you that I've started again on my latest book. It wasn't working out as I expected - but now I have a clearer idea where I'm going so it should all be plain sailing from now on. And I won't have the disruption of choosing paints and colours - only curtains!

Friday, 4 March 2011


I'm in the Isle of Wight today, which is a small island off the southern coast of England. It has beautiful scenery and charming cottages as you can see. These were taken in Shanklin which is the main town.
And the last small photo is of Osborne House which was the country retreat of Queen Victoria.

Wednesday, 2 March 2011


I'm looking forward to this morning as we're having a demonstration at our art group entitled Loose Painting in Acrylics. Now I am not a loose woman, never have been, so this will be interesting. My own personal style is very detailed and takes me ages to do in either water colours or acrylics. So who knows, I might be inspired to finally become a loose woman.

Monday, 28 February 2011

Church again

Just for interest I've found a link to the tiny church I featured on Friday. I have an interior photo in my file but this is so much better.


Friday, 25 February 2011


This is the tiniest church imaginable. It's in Wales and there's no seating, just an alter. But it's a must to visit every time we're in the area.

Tuesday, 22 February 2011


What happened to Monday? Where did it go? We had another weekend spent with our eldest grandson - we went to the cinema this time to see PAUL. It's not somethig I would have chosen to see but in the end I actually enjoyed it.

And yesterday we went shopping for paint for our bedroom. It's badly in need of redecoration and new curtains. I do plan to make my own but have yet to find any material I like. And I wouldn't like to hazard a guess as to when the room will actually be done! We've been talking about it for so long...

Adam & Eve are not yet true best friends.....

Friday, 18 February 2011

Book covers

Compare these two covers - my very first one and my latest! It's almost as though they've gone full circle.

Wednesday, 16 February 2011


My new hero and heroine are taking shape and becoming real people even though I seem to have been doing anything but writing recently. Believe me, though, the new story may be out of sight but it's never out of mind. I still don't have names for my H&H - they're temporarily called Adam & Eve. But I'm tossing the idea around of Dendra for my heroine. It's the name of a small Greek island but also a friend of a friend, etc, knows someone of that name and said it came from the Greek word for rhododendron.

What do you think?

Monday, 14 February 2011

St Valentine's Day

Do you know, I'd almost forgotten it was Valentine's Day today so I'm coming in a bit late wishing everyone a Happy St Valentine's Day. Perhaps the reason I'd forgotten was that we've had a full weekend with our eldest grandson staying here. We took him shopping (he's at the age when he likes designer clothes), we intended to go to the cinema but the film he wanted to see had finished two days before! And we went to one of our local Chinese restaurants for dinner. Which was a treat. So this morning I had a lie in and then while my DH hoovered I polished the furniture and cleaned the windows - and consequently forgot all about blogging and Valentine's Day.

So I hope you all enjoyed it and that you had cards from your loved ones - even cards from secret admirers (those are the best kind).

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Book cover

I've just found the cover for my latest book A NIGHT WITH CONSEQUENCES. It's not going to be released until May here in the UK, but Amazon have the cover up already. Isn't it just gorgeous?

I'll tell you more about the book a little nearer the time of publication. Or maybe Kara or Blake will tell you theselves if they get too impatient.

Tuesday, 8 February 2011


I think I mentioned some time ago (a long time ago actually) that I had come across the first manuscript I had ever written. Well, I found time today to take it out of its box. It didn't start out as a HM&B, it was just going to be a love story to please myself, I had no thought of trying to get it published. But the more I wrote the more I realised that I wanted to do something with it. The thing was I didn't know how to go about it.

I found out there were such things as Writer's Circles and I joined my local one. By this time I'd written about 25,000 words and I was lucky in that the lady who ran it was a HM&B writer - or just M&B as it was in those days. Her name was Norrey Ford, I don't know whether any of you have ever heard of her? Don't forget this was in the 70's, so she must have been writing in the 60's, maybe even earlier.

These were her first words:

This is a promising beginning, but you will realise it is a beginning, and not yet anything like submitting to a publisher. Most writers, even experienced professionals, do 2 or 3 drafts before a book is finally polished sufficiently. However if you are prepared to work like a galley slave, through blood, sweat and tears, like all professionals do at the beginning, you'll make it - possibly in a couple of years, though some take at least three. Writing is not an easy profession and I would never encourage anyone who didn't have what it takes - that would lead to too much heartbreak. I do think you have what it takes, but only you can tell if you have the stick-to-it-ness and the will to succeed. By your reaction to this first critique on the manuscript you will find out for yourself what you can take, and I shall certainly know.

The date of this was September 1974 and my first book was published in January 1976, less than the 2-3 years she prophesied. So I guess I did have the stick-to-it-ness and the will to succeed.

That first manuscript was my learning curve, it didn't get accepted but I knew by then what I wanted to do and which direction I needed to take. Just for fun here is the first paragraph. I called it Live For Tomorrow. (which I realise now sounds like a James Bond film!!)

Trina sat with her head buried in her hands. The sunlight slanting through the window enhanced the golden tones of her long silken hair. Unaware of the picture she made, the glow of the evening sun givining her an almost ethereal appearance, she lifted her head. Her clear blue eyes and wide, generous mouth gave the impression of sudden determination.

This isn't so far off the style I write now - and I could almost use this paragraph as an opening to a new novel. In fact it's given me an idea...

Friday, 4 February 2011

Foto Friday

I'm in the Cotswolds today.
Isn't the car cute on a hotel forecourt?
Then there's the little village of Bourton on the Water where the river runs through. This is a lovely place with lots of little individual shops and in the summer time it's always crowded.

And a cottage to die for!
The Cotswolds is one of my favourite parts of England.

Wednesday, 2 February 2011

Slowly, slowly.

Wednesdays are supposed to be about the progress I've made so far this week. The short answer is not much. I'm busy plotting. And as I haven't yet found names for my new hero and heroine they are being temporarily called Adam and Eve.

Sunday, 30 January 2011

Midnight jottings

A funny thing happened to me last week. Funny ha ha, not funny peculiar.

I've mentioned before that I always keep a notepad and pen by my bed. Well, one night a piece of conversation came into my head and I knew I had to write it down. I always write in the dark for fear of waking my DH. I line my thumb up on the side of the pad and move it down as I write so that I know where each row starts. It's never let me down. The rows might be a bit crooked but I don't overwrite anything.

That night it didn't work. But not in the way you might think.

My pen ran out! I had the first line very clear, the second faded a little and by the third and fourth I could read nothing. I hadn't even pressed on hard enough for an imprint.

And I can't remember what I wrote!

The moral to the story is - always use a pencil.

Friday, 28 January 2011


Today I'm travelling to Wales. These are photos I took of the ruins of Montgomery Castle which was built in Norman times. The views were truly gorgeous once we'd climbed up there.

Tuesday, 25 January 2011

Heroes and heroines

I've been trawling through photos of gorgeous men and their equally as attractive counterparts looking for inspiration for my H&H. Nothing yet. Perhaps I'm being too fussy. I really ought to keep a folder on my computer. I have the odd one or two but they're ones I've already used and I don't like using them again in case I inadvertantly write the same description. I never used to use photos - I let my imagination run riot. And it hasn't done me too badly all these years. How times change!

Monday, 24 January 2011

Flowers and things

I'm posting another photograph this morning because this was the one that inspired the flowers on Friday and I meant to put it up then. I have this picture as my desktop at the moment (I keep changing them) and it was taken in the Isle of Wight around Easter time last year. The primroses were snuggled in a hedgerow and not visible unless you were looking for them - but aren't they beautiful?
I'm busy at the moment doing character studies for my new hero and heroine. I have an outline for a story but it will need a lot of development before I send a synopsis off to my editor. I don't even have names for them yet.

Friday, 21 January 2011

I thought I'd post photos of flowers today - something to brighten up the frost and fog that we have around this morning.

I spotted this field of poppies from the motorway some time last year and persuaded my husband to get off at the next junction and go find them. The photo doesn't really do them justice.

The pansies and crocuses were taken in my garden.

Wednesday, 19 January 2011


Not so good news. My editor doesn't think my latest story is achieving its potential and has suggested I put it aside and start something new. So it's back to the drawing board. On hindsight, the fact that I didn't carry on at a pace with the rest of the story while waiting to hear from her should perhaps have told me that I hadn't quite hit the mark this time. Perhaps it was having my wonderful holiday in Florida and then Christmas that affected the flow. At least that's my excuse!

So it's back to the drawing board (another name for my plot file)

And I'm off to my Art Group now which will give me inspiration in a totally different way.

Monday, 17 January 2011


Still waiting for news from my editor so the writing went very slowly last week. About 2000 words in the whole week! I usually do that in a day - when it's a good day, that is. And today I shan't do much as I have a chiropodist appointment this afternoon.

We were expecting delivery of a new fridge freezer on Saturday, waiting in the whole day, finally phoning to find out where it was, to be told the order had been cancelled!!! By whom? No one knew. And it certainly wasn't us. To add insult to injury they claimed to now have none in stock. We had ordered it by phone and paid by credit card - but had that been cancelled too? No! They promise to deliver when they have new stock next week - but no way. We have cancelled this time and ordered it from somewhere else. But I'm keeping a check to make sure they cancel the credit card payment.

Having got that off my chest I'm going to sit down with a strong cup of coffee and spend quality time with Robynne and Kendel. I know they won't do the dirty on me.

Friday, 14 January 2011


Todays photos were taken in the Orkney Islands which are a group of islands lying off the north eastern tip of Scotland. They have a magnificent history and during World Wars I and II the Royal Navybase at Scapa Flow played a major part.

We spent a holiday there a few years ago and what surprised me most was the lack of trees - possibly because they are very windy islands . Nevertheless they are beautiful in their own way.

The first of the photos is the airport!!!

Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Slowly, slowly...

It's a quiet week so far. The writing's going slowly - very slowly - I'm always afraid to really knuckle down and get on with it when I'm waiting to hear whether the first chapters meet with approval.

Last night I cleaned out my sewing box - which was absolutely bulging. I threw half of the stuff away, old buttons, bits of trimmings, bias binding, etc. Stuff you keep just in case! The lid will close now and it's all tidy again. But for how long? I used to do a lot of sewing, I made all of my own and my children's clothes, but I'm afraid I don't do very much these days.

Monday, 10 January 2011

The waiting game

The first three chapetrs of Robynne and Kendel's story, together with a synopsis, have now gone to my editor. Fingers crossed she likes it. I'm going to catch up with a few jobs around the house while I'm waiting to hear from her - although I might do just a page of writing each day so that I can keep it alive in my head.

Our bedroom badly needs redecorating so I have colour charts propped up on pillows trying to decide which colour I like. At the moment it's in shades of green which has always been my favourite colour - but I think it's time for a change. Maybe browns, or maybe - I've been thinking about this - one wall in a deep purply berry colour. The thing is it's not a very big room and I don't want to overpower it. What are your favourite bedroom colours?

Friday, 7 January 2011

Foto Friday

Well, here we are, the first Friday of 2011, and as promised here are the first of my photos
taken during the recent snow we had here in England.

Isn't this tree absolutely gorgeous?

Below is the same area without the snow and is home to hundreds of deer. Although you can visit and never see any. This was a lucky photograph.

Wednesday, 5 January 2011

Working Wednesday

I finished chapter three yesterday - and now I need to work out the rest of the plot in more detail before I send these first chapters to my editor. I preferred it when I used to let the story develop as I went along - I don't like plotting - things always changed anyway.

Wednesday is usually my art morning - but I had a phone call last night to say that the heating has broken down in the hall where we go - so no painting today. Which means I can get on with my writing. After I've been out to post some letters, and after I've ironed the washing I did yesterday! I was late getting up as well - due to a late night staying up to watch a James Bond film. I'm not a particular fan of James Bond but my DH likes to watch them and I hadn't seen that particular one so I joined him.

Don't forget Friday is now Foto Friday - so I plan to upload one of my 'snow' photographs. I'm glad the snow's gone now and hope it does't come back. It's actually raining today and it's not very warm - except here in my nice cosy study.

Sunday, 2 January 2011

New Year Plans

That's it, another year over. A brand new year to look forward to. With all the hopes and aspirations that go with it. Last year I vowed to blog every day but it didn't work, so this year I'm aiming at three days a week.

Motivating Monday - when I hope to tell you my plans for the next five days.

Working Wednesday - a report on my progress.

Foto Friday - I have hundreds of photographs on my computer so I thought I would share some of them with you.

So - as it's Monday today my plan is to finish my third chapter and get it off to my editor. I'm actually struggling with these first chapters so I hope it doesn't bode ill for the rest of the story.

On the wall in front of me as I work is a quote by John Steinbeck - which says:

Write as freely and as rapidly as possible and throw the whole thing on paper. Never correct or re-write until the whole thing is down. Rewrite in process is usually found to be an excuse for not going on.

Mmm! Rewrite is an excuse for not going on! I rewrite a lot, I like to correct as I go along. Maybe I should change? Just get everything down swiftly.

How about you? What is your writing process?