Never Give Up on Your Dreams - a Regency guest post by Josie Bonham

I spent most of my childhood daydreaming when I hadn’t got my nose in a book. It’s a wonder I ever managed to pass any school exams. English was my best subject, but I’m intensely curious about life and how things work. This led to me studying biological sciences at a redbrick university. And yet, a small part of me always wanted to write fiction. I have a cupboard containing scribbled stories going back years. Then my eldest niece wrote and published a fantasy novel. I decided that if she could write a whole book then so could I.

My favourite read is historical romance and this seemed a good genre to write in. I didn’t have much of a track record but I had an enormous stroke of luck. I spotted the New Writers’ Scheme run by the Romantic Novelists’ Association. I was lucky enough to bag a place on this. This meant I was able to join the amazing Birmingham Chapter for meetings of other romance writers, many established authors, in the West Midlands. With the support of my new found writing friends and all the learning opportunities opened up by the RNA, plus the critiques I received on my efforts at full length novels, my goal started to look achievable. Writing a book isn’t easy and there is so much to learn. But when was anything worth doing ever easy?

Four years after joining the RNA, in May 2020, I published my first book. ‘A Good Match For The Major’, a Regency romance and the first in a series of stories about ‘Reluctant Brides’. (Currently free on Prime Reading for Amazon Prime members.) These are standalone stories linked by character. I had a first draft of books two and three. After lots of input from my editor, these were published in November and December 2020. The aftermath of catching covid has slowed down the writing of book four, but ‘The Duke’s Bluestocking’ should be out this autumn. Grace Bamford, a feisty bluestocking with a weakness for fashion, will be familiar to readers of the series as she appears in books one and two in a supporting role. Will her half Scottish duke be able to persuade her to change her mind about avoiding marriage? If he survives long enough to find out who is trying to murder him that is!

It took me decades to find the determination to chase my dream. It’s been a fascinating journey and I love what I do. We are living through tough times and there is nothing like the satisfaction I get when a reader tells me they loved one of my books and reading it has helped them escape from reality for a while and relax. Apologies to the lovely lady who read all three of those out and asked when there would be some more. I’m confident that book four will be out this autumn. I also have a first draft of a book which might be the start of a second series, set just after Waterloo. I’m hoping to have this published before Christmas.

And remember don’t ever give up on your dreams.

For more information about me and my books please visit:

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