Elizabeth Ellen Carter (EE Carter) hails from the Gold Coast, Queensland, not far from where I live. Elizabeth writes full-bodied historical romance, wrapping secrets, lies and scandals around the rich landscapes and stories of England and Paris, and exposing the oft-hidden lives of the aristocracy.
I’m very excited to say that her very much anticipated first novel, Moonstone Obsession will be released by Etopia Press on October 18. The book has already received high acclaim, having been shortlisted for the 2013 Romance Writers of Australia’s Emerald Awards for unpublished manuscripts. Elizabeth is currently working on her second historical romance, Warrior’s Surrender, set in England in the years after the Conquest of England by William in 1066.
Noelle: Elizabeth, welcome to my blog, and thanks for taking the time to talk to us about your books.
Elizabeth: Thank you very much for having me. It’s wonderful to see so many authors from our part of the world doing very well. I can’t wait to see your next title on the shelves.
Noelle: Thanks. :-) Moonstone Obsession is set in England in 1790, and centres around Sir James Mitchell, and his unexpected love affair with Selina Rosewall, daughter of an untitled seafaring family. What inspired you to write this book?
Elizabeth: I had one scene in my head for years that centres on the witty and flirtatious banter between a Regency lady and gentleman and it wouldn’t let go until I wrote it down. From there I became fascinated with the Georgian and Regency era, not only because of the gorgeous clothes, but also the incredible industrial and philosophical ideas emerging at that time which have had a profound effect on how we see the world today.
Noelle: It seems to have been a big year for you so far. Being a finalist in the Emeralds, then a publishing contract, and now you’re on the threshold of release day for Moonstone Obsession. I bet you are thrilled that your stories will be read by people from all around the world?
Elizabeth: Oh yes, absolutely. This is the wonderful thing about being involved in publishing right now. We’re not limited by borders or by being filtered through major publishing houses. And more titles and a greater choice is also great news for readers.
It’s been a rollercoaster year. I started writing Moonstone Obsession in June of 2012 and by October it was polished enough (pardon the pun) to send it off for consideration in the Emeralds
Noelle: How long did you spend on solid research for Moonstone Obsession?
Elizabeth: I’ve always loved history and philosophy, so a lot of the basics of the era I already knew. I tend to have a framework for the story and then research along the way to make sure the story is authentic.
Noelle: Did you happen to uncover any real secrets, or unknown stories about noted characters in that period of time?
Elizabeth: Ah, Chevalier D’eon a transgender spy who lived out his later years in London. He had retired by the time Moonstone Obsession was set and I had already written a couple of scenes for him, but sadly he ended on the cutting room floor (or whatever the literary equivalent is).
There’s also the Earl of Sackville who was the original cricket tragic who was all set to set sail from for the world’s first international Test match between England and France when news broke that Louis had been overthrown.
Noelle: How do you manage to juggle all your commitments, yet still find time for writing and marketing? Are you good at routines?
Elizabeth: I work full time, so any writing I do is in the evenings and weekends. Thankfully I have a wonderfully supportive husband.
Noelle: Are you able to share with us your favourite ‘writing room’?
|This is Miss Coco who sits next to me while I work.|
Noelle: I see you’re second book - Warrior’s Surrender – is well under way. It’s another historical romance novel. This is clearly your chosen genre, but do you ever see yourself writing contemporary romance?
Elizabeth: I love writing historicals for the same reason why other people like science-fiction, it’s a way of exploring the human condition (especially romance) in a way that is different from the modern world. I have another four two page historical synopses.
I did say once that I couldn’t see myself writing contemporary, but I’ve changed my mind.
After Warrior’s Surrender I have a contemporary novella called Miss Midnight that I’m going to dive straight into – the heroine becomes an accidental radio star and finds her true love.
And speaking of scenes which won’t let go, I have another idea for a contemporary romantic thriller based on two scenes which came to me while daydreaming.
Noelle: You’ve been a professional writer for some years. How well did this background prepare you for writing historical novels?
Elizabeth: In terms of the craft – nothing at all. Writing novels is a completely different discipline to any other writing I’ve done (and I think I’ve done the lot – journalism news and feature stories, radio and TV advertisement scripting, web site copy, brochure writing, technical papers…)
Noelle: When you’re not writing, how do you like to spend your time?
Elizabeth: I love browsing antiques and op shops. Then there is reading, of course! Fortunately I’m married to the perfect man who enjoys the same things I do!
Noelle:Elizabeth, thanks for visiting today. I can’t wait for Moonstone Obsession to be released! In
Elizabeth: Thank you once again for having me.