3rd March 2018: Out today in large print by Magna - Helen's Tomorrow
6th November 2017: Part 2 of the Ravel Series Sweet Caroline was published in eBook and paperback
1st December 2016: The last of the Romantic Novelists sessions of 2016. We enjoyed lunch together before a table 'round robin' session when members passed around flyers and leaflets, and announced their latest novels or work in progress. We meet in Harrogate which is about forty minutes' journey for me but some of the members travel from Hull and the east coast and from as far as the north east. It's a good time for sharing and I always come home with fresh ideas. Our next meeting will be in March 2017.
19th November 2016: I had a lovely birthday party at my Baildon Hall Club and I spent an enjoyable evening with my friends and family
15th November 2016: My latest novel 'Helen's Tomorrow' is now out as an E-Book and in paperback
10th July 2016 GOOD NEWS: - My latest novel 'Till the End of Time' has been taken up by Magna to be published in large print and as an audio book. Both versions will be out early 2017
7th July, 2016: I had a very interesting and enjoyable get-together yesterday with my writer friends at our monthly Flying Ducks, Northern Chapter meeting in Harrogate. The lunch was delicious and afterwards one of our members, John Jackson, led a discussion on social media. His input and that of many of my writer friends gave me tips on how to improve my sites.
Back from my 2016 cruise
5th May 2016 - Back from a wonderful half world cruise from Hong Kong to Southampton. The Great Wall of China was stunning, the people in South Korea were so hospitable and friendly, and the Nagasaki and Osaka tours were thought-provoking. The beaches in Honolulu were pure white and Hawaii's Big Island beautifully verdant. Alcatraz off San Francisco was an eye-opener and the city itself was impressive as was San Diego. The tour there with its 80 year old guide was one of the best. Mexico was great and the passage through the Panama Canal was not to be missed. The Caribbean Islands are always worth a visit and our final port of call was Ponta Delgada in the Azores. San Miguel Island there is green and beautiful. All highly recommended!
And now I'm back to the sunshine (at least for a couple of days) and my writing!
My cabin on board Arcadia - very comfortable with a lovely view
Distant view of the Great Wall of China
Closer view of the Great Wall of China
A lovely park in Osaka
Beautiful white beach in Hawaii
San Diego's impressive statue of a sailor and a nurse on their return from war
Flowers for my Birthday
A beautiful sunset over the Pacific islands between
Sydney and Japan during my recent 2015 cruise
ROMANTIC NOVELISTS' ASSOCIATION INTERVIEW
Tuesday, October 8, 2013
Novelist Freda Lightfoot Interviews Shirley Heaton
Shirley Heaton lives in a Yorkshire village on the edge of the moor and loves spending time with her family. She swims regularly and enjoys aquaerobics. Each week she attends a writers group to discuss writing, drink coffee and eat naughty cakes. Having travelled extensively, she uses her knowledge of people, cultures and personal experiences in her writing.
Welcome to the RNA Blog Shirley. Medical romances are very popular right now, so tell us how you set about the research.
The basis of my knowledge began when, as medical secretary to two orthopaedic surgeons, I took notes during ward rounds and in theatre ante-rooms. Since I began writing I have contacted various institutions such as The National Blood Service, and found most people show a genuine interest and are willing to help. When I needed specialist information for my novel ‘Relative Strangers’, I received expert advice from Leeds University’s Professor of Haematology, who later attended the book launch. I regularly update my knowledge because over the years the names of hospital departments, medical treatments and procedures have changed. Casualty is now Accident & Emergency, there are Triage Processes prioritising clinical needs, Major Trauma Centres dealing with multiple injuries, and x-rays are viewed on computer and not film on a light box. I check information both on line and with the local hospitals and know that, if I get it wrong, someone will let me know.
Does dividing your time between Spain and the UK create problems for you or can you work anywhere?
I find I can work anywhere and my home in Spain is inspirational especially when I’m gazing across the mountains to the sea and formulating ideas for my next novel. But when friends and family visit on holiday we take trips out which allows me to people-watch, take in the world around me and reflect.
Are you a well-organised sort of person?
I try to be organised in the way I work and, in addition to online facilities, I have a large filing cabinet packed with well-catalogued information. Most days I write early morning when I’m at my best, starting by editing the previous day’s script. I continue until lunchtime and take an hour out when I catch up on recorded TV programmes or the news. I find TV useful for ideas on storylines and I also enjoy reading a variety of genres and styles. I always finish my writing by six o’clock latest. Evenings are reserved for relaxation, dinner and a glass (or two) of red wine, watching TV, and sudoku or crosswords. Even though I’m resting my body, I like to keep my mind active.
What would you look for in a romantic hero?
My hero is a combination of the best characteristics of the Alpha and the Beta males. Whilst he is strong and quietly confident, he is not arrogant or egocentric. He is caring and loving but not overpowering or demanding, concerned and protective but not confrontational or dominating.
What was your favourite film as a child?
I recall vividly The Red Shoes starring Moira Shearer. Based on one of Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tales, it’s a love story with a difference. A young ballerina falls in love with a composer. Torn between her love for him and her need to dance, she eventually chooses her lover. The film has a very sad ending and it made me cry.
What would your most indulgent day consist of?
Give me a sunbed on the deck of a swish cruise liner bound for some exotic destination where I can relax, sip a cool gin and tonic, read when I feel like it and watch the dolphins frolicking in the waves.
A Private Consultation
Lifeguard, Pierce, rescues Brooke from a rip tide and, after a whirlwind romance, promises to keep in touch. Time goes by without contact and, ten years on, anaesthetist, Brooke, discovers Pierce is not only her new neighbour but also consultant surgeon at the clinic. But he wears a wedding ring, and a pregnant woman shares his cottage. Recognising the warning signals, Brooke determines to steer clear, realising letting him close could re-ignite the fire. Pierce, however, has other ideas…
Thank you for sparing the time to talk to us today Shirley. We wish you continuing success with your books.
Best wishes, Freda
Find out more:
Interviews on the RNA Blog are carried out by Freda, Henri and Livvie. They are for RNA full members only. If you are interested in an interview, please contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
Frances Brody said...
What a good interview. It must be tricky keeping up to date with medical advances, and finding a fresh slant for the medical background story, but it sounds as if you've pulled this off with panache!
Shirley Heaton said...
Thank you Frances for your observations. Medical science is advancing all the time and, whilst I don't touch on anything too complex, I know it's essential to use up-to-date terminology.
Relative Strangers - Book Launch
My mainstream novel was launched at the lovely Baildon Hall. More than 100 guests attended the event including a reporter from The Bradford Telegraph & Argos.
Paperback original cover
My friends from the village Scribbler group
The book signing