Christmas is the season the Gingerbread Café was made for…but owner Lily couldn’t be feeling less merry if she tried. She’s spent another year dreaming of being whisked away on a sleigh-ride for two, but she’s facing festive season alone – again. And, just to give her another reason to feel anything other than candy-cane perky, a new shop across the road has opened… Not only is it selling baked goods, but the owner, with his seriously charming smile, has every girl in town swooning.But Lily isn’t about to let her business crumble — the Gingerbread Café is the heart of the community, and she’s going to fight for it! This could be the Christmas that maybe, just maybe, all her dreams – even the someone-to-decorate-the-Christmas-tree-with ones – really do come true!
Rebecca RaisinGenre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Carina UK (Harlequin)
Date of Publication: November 12th 2013
Number of pages: 52
Word Count: 17, 750Cover Artist: Carina UK
Rebecca Raisin is a true bibliophile.
This love of books morphed into the desire to write them. She’s been widely published in various short story anthologies, and in fiction magazines, and is now focusing on writing romance. The only downfall about writing about gorgeous men who have brains as well as brawn, is falling in love with them – just as well they’re fictional. Rebecca aims to write characters you can see yourself being friends with. People with big hearts who care about relationships, and most importantly, believe in true love.
What gave you the inspiration to write this book?
I wanted to write a Christmas themed story, and an idea sprang to mind at around midnight, as they tend to do! I spent the next hour or so typing notes into my phone, as one character in particular wasn’t going to let me sleep until she’d played out the opening scene for me! The next day, I wrote the first few thousand words from my notes, and fell in love with the locals from the small town of Ashford. I love writing foodie themed stories, so one set at Christmas in a Gingerbread Café was perfect!
Who is your favorite character in the book?
I love CeeCee. The no-nonsense southern woman who tells it like it is. She’s Lil’s (the main characters) best friend and mother figure, and she’s lot of fun! In my mind she’s morphed into this real person, and I’m one step away from talking to her most days, until I remember she’s fictional! We all need a friend like Cee.
Which came first, the title or the novel?
The novel came first. It was originally called Sweeter than Sugar, and my lovely editors came up with an alternative title which I absolutely loved!
What scene in the book are you most proud of, and why?
I love the opening scene because it is kind of funny! And I really like the catering scene with Lil and Damon, and the shrilling turkey scene!
Thinking way back to the beginning, what’s the most important thing you’ve learned as a writer from then to now?
I think the most important thing is to do it for the pure love of it. I write every day because I feel compelled to, and even if my work wasn’t contracted I’d still write all of the stories out of my mind. When I write I try to stop the niggling doubts, ‘Will people like it?” and things like that, and just write as if it’s only for me. I find when you’re not worried about what other people will think you write a much more honest story. You can worry later! Just write!
What do you like most about the cover of the book?
I love the colours, and the wintery Christmas feel to it, and I’m a little partial to the little gingerbread man on the table!
What new release book are you looking most forward to in 2014?
I have lots of writing friends whose books will be out next year, so already my TBR pile is huge! So definitely can’t wait for that.
What was your favorite book in 2013?
I read so many amazing books this year. It’s so hard to pick just one. But I will say the new Bridget Jones, Mad about the boy had me laughing and crying and cheering for Bridget. The way Helen writes brings and immediacy to the story, and the blunt and often brutal humour is just amazing. I could relate to the older Bridget, especially with the kid dilemmas and thought it was spot on.
What’s up next for you?
I can now announce there will be a second novella to Christmas at the Gingerbread Café, which will be available next year. I’m very excited to be able to write more of Cee, Lil and Damon, and of course all those lovely foodie things!
I also have four more novellas contracted to Carina, and one longer story, so it will be a busy year.
Is there anything that you would like to add?
I thought I’d share my Pinterest board with you so you can see where I got some inspiration from for Christmas at the Gingerbread Café, and who I imagine would play the main characters in a movie! Gotta dream big!
I hope you have a wonderful festive season! Thanks for having me here today.