Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Rosemary Morris About What It's Like to be a Historical Novelist

About Our Guest:
Rosemary Morris was born in 1940 in Sidcup Kent.  As a child, when she was not making up stories, her head was ‘always in a book.’

While working in a travel agency, Rosemary met her Indian husband.  He encouraged her to continue her education at Westminster College.  In 1961 Rosemary and her husband, now a barrister, moved to his birthplace, Kenya, where she lived from 1961 until 1982.  After and attempted coup d’etat, she and four of her children lived in an ashram in France.

Back in England, Rosemary wrote historical fiction.  She is now a member of the Romantic Novelist’s Association, Historical Novel Society and Cassio Writers.

Apart from writing, Rosemary enjoys classical Indian literature, reading, visiting places of historical interest, vegetarian cooking, growing organic fruit, herbs and vegetables, and creative crafts.

Time spent with her five children, and their families, most of who live near her is precious.

And Now, For a Glimpse Into the Life of a Historical Novelist -

This and That by Rosemary Morris

When chatting to people about my life as a Historical Novelist, they are surprised by the amount of time needed to write a historical novel.  In order to do so, I spend hours researching and visiting relevant places.

My day begins at 6 a.m.  With a break for a quick breakfast and catching up with the news I work until 10 or 11 a.m.  Apart from getting on with a new novel, I might work on an article such as my recent publication ‘Samuel Pepys’ in Vintage Press, check and answer e-mails or add to my website and blog.

On most days I work from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.  Between these hours I deal with various ‘writerly’ matters including critiques for one of the on line critique groups I belong to.  In return I receive critiques of my work which are invaluable.  I also belong to Watford Writers. which meets every Monday, and enjoy reading extracts from my work, listening to a guest speaker or participating in various activities such as flash fiction.  I also enjoy being a member of the Romantic Novelist’s Association and The Historical Novel Society.

Apart from writing I enjoy gardening organically.  I grow herbs, fruit, vegetables & ornamentals.  Even now, when there are thick frosts on the ground, I have some home grown produce in the garden – Swiss chard, New Zealand spinach, curly kale, red kale & parsnips.  I have home grown carrots and turnips stored in my cold greenhouse and a shelf of homemade jam, pickle and chutney. 

I’m tone deaf and am not a skilled artist, but I enjoy arts and crafts.  As a rule, I find a little time to knit, embroider or work on my patchwork quilt.  For Christmas I gave my two older granddaughters doll’s layettes which were rapturously received.

To keep fit – and by the way, gardening is good exercise – I visit the local sports centre where I swim a quarter of a mile before relaxing in the sauna, steam room and Jacuzzi.  On other days, I try to find time to go for a walk round the green or in the woodland behind my house, where according to season, I pick blackberries, elderberries, sloes and mushrooms.

Apart from my various activities I treasure time spent with my family, most of who live near me.  They enjoy playing card and board games, cooking and gardening with me.  Each child has his or her interests which I foster.  The reward? Hugs and kisses and comments such as: ‘You’re the best grandma in the world.’

All in all, although life does have its ups and downs, I feel blessed.

About Rosemary's Sweet Romance Novel, Tangled Love:

Richelda Shaw’s privileged life changes for the worse after James II’s daughter and son-in-law usurped his throne. When her parents die she is left penniless and alone, holding on to the oath she gave her father to reclaim their ancestral home.

Richelda entrusts her heart to the parson’s son Dudley, but he is not all that he seems. Her wealthy aunt saves her from poverty, and wishes to arrange her marriage to a dashing Viscount, whose care and attention make Richelda think and feel against her wishes.

However, as she travels a new path in London, she never forgets her oath. But hidden danger lurks and when she tries to find a legendary treasure trove she must also fight not only for her life but for true love.

Rosemary Morris

Tangled Love available from https/museituppublishing.com/bookstore2, Amazon Kindle, Barnes and Noble, Bookstrand – Mainstream, Sony-e-reader, Kobo, Smashwords & elsewhere.

New releases from MuseItUp publishing.
Sunday’s Child June 2012 set in the Regency era.
False Pretences October 2012 set in the Regency era.

Please welcome Rosemary to Sweet Not Spicy by leaving a comment below.


  1. Welcome to Sweet Not Spicy, Rosemary. Thanks for sharing a bit of your busy, full life.

    Morgan Mandel

  2. Great post! No wonder non-writers romanticize about the life of historical romance novelists--because it's all true! LOL

    Best of luck with your latest book, Rosemary!

  3. Great review and interview! Love historical fiction because the author does all the research for me!

  4. Yes, Research is the pits!

    Morgan Mandel

  5. Excellent post. I enjoy research, but it is annoying how much of a time sucker it can be. There are days I just want to write, but then stumble upon some fact I need to look up. Arg.

    Wishing you the best,


  6. Good luck with your new release Rosemary, I know what a hard road this has been for you. The cover is lovely too. However I love the research part of the process and my greatest weakness is putting too much into my stories and creating info dumps. A sprinkle is all that's needed.

  7. A very interesting post, Rosemary.
    It doesn't surprise me at all how much time is spent in researching for historical novels and I admire your application. I would love to write historical fiction, but know I don't have the self-discipline!
    I do like the cover of 'Tangled Love' and wish you the very best of luck with the novel.

  8. Great post Rosemary.
    Good luck with your new release!

  9. It's great to read about how an author manages her schedule. Research is great fun IMHO - it's work when you have to make yourself stop and actually start building your own story that fits in with the research!

    1. Kate Dolan is right. Research is great fun. Sometimes I have a plot and theme for a novel, along with the main characters in mind; sometimes, while reading historical non-fiction, something triggers the plot or theme.

      All the best,
      Rosemary Morris

  10. Congratulations on your new release!

  11. You are certainly blessed, Rosemary. Good luck with the novel, having read your work I'm sure it's a great read.

  12. Rosemary, That was an interesting post. I liked the way you go back to nature to grow vegetables, and put your family high on your list yet of priorities - yet you still keep a writer's discipline. Finally, I love that scrumptious hero on your book cover!