Diving In

My website is past due for an update, and I’ve made that a priority for 2022.

The plan is that all of my websites will be amalgamated and all of my books will live on this site. The urls I own will be repointed to this site. It also means updating the links in many ebook interiors, as the landing page urls for each book will change.

Delacroix.net website now
DragonfireNovels.com website now

I need to change the theme, since mine isn’t supported anymore—which means the banners will need to be resized. That’s not a big deal since I update them all the time anyway, but it’s why there aren’t new ones done for Q1 yet.

Things may get wonky or downright ugly at intervals, items may vanish and reappear, but it’ll be beautiful by the end. (Ha. It vanished last night, didn’t it, but now we’re back.) In the end, it’ll also be a lot easier to manage one site rather than three. I’m diving in!

December Update

Compiling these monthly posts is becoming addictive! It really gives me a sense of accomplishment. Let’s take a look at what was completed in December.

New Release

This month, as is so often the cast at the end of the year, I published two new boxed sets: Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Set 1 and Dragons First, a bundle of three first-in-series dragon shifter romances.

Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Set 1, including the first three contemporary romances in the series by Deborah Cooke
Dragons First, a digital bundle of three paranormal romance series starters by Deborah Cooke

Boxed sets are a good way to save money on ebooks – FF1, for example, is priced at $9.99US, while the individual books are $5.99US each. Just One Fake Date is sometimes free, but even so, the bundle is a better deal than buying the books individually. Dragons First similarly is a better deal than buying all three books—it’s 99cents right now, so even if you picked up Kiss of Fire free, it’s a good deal. Better yet, Dragons First has discount codes after each book to save when you continue the series at some portals. (Nook, KOBO, GooglePlay and Smashwords). These codes are comparatively new and I’m curious to see how many of you like them. There’s more detail in this post on my Dragonfire website—plus I got to add a password-protected area there called The Lair. 🙂

One other extremely cool thing happened this month: I regained all of the rights for my Dragon Diaries paranormal YA series and was able to publish my editions in all markets. That was the last of the rights to revert from previous publishers, and it felt really good to have everything back. I’ve gotten used to having the control over my work. 🙂

Flying Blind, book one of the Dragon Diaries paranormal YA trilogy by Deborah Cooke
Winging It, book two of the Dragon Diaries YA paranormal trilogy by Deborah Cooke
Blazing the Trail, book three of the Dragon Diaries paranormal YA trilogy by Deborah Cooke

Pre-Orders

For a while, I’d sworn off pre-orders but have been making up for that this fall. There are three pre-orders for upcoming contemporary romances: Aidan’s book, Just A Small Town Romance, which is book one of my upcoming contemporary romance series, the Heroes of Harte’s Harbor; When Annika Met Thom is the 10th and (at this point) final romance in the Flatiron Five Fitness series, coming in April; The Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Set 1 is the first series bundle and will publish in December. I’ve also got the pre-order up for The Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Set 2, coming in June. The third bundle will publish next December. You can find the links for all of them on the F5F Boxed Set page.

Just a Small Town Romance, book one of the Heroes of Harte's Harbor series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke
Just a Small Town Romance
When Annika Met Thom, book ten of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke
When Annika Met Thom
Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Set 2, including books 4 to 6 of the contemporary romance series by Deborah Cooke
Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Set 2

Claire has four pre-orders right now: first, there’s The Hunter and the Heiress, book two of my Blood Brothers series of medieval Scottish romances. This month, I also added the pre-order for Rafael’s book, #3 in that series, The Dragon and the Damsel. That book will be coming in September. I also added a character list for the Blood Brothers series on the Delacroix website.

The Hunter & the Heiress, book two of the Blood Brothers series of medieval romances by Claire Delacroix
The Hunter & the Heiress
The Dragon & the Damsel, book three of the Blood Brothers series of medieval romances by Claire Delacroix
The Dragon & the Damsel

In March, the fourth and final book in the Brides of North Barrows series of Regency romance novellas, A Most Inconvenient Earl, will be published. There’s an upcoming bundle, the Brides of North Barrows Boxed Set, which will publish in August in ebook and trade paperback, too. This one was put together early because I saw this cover art and just fell in love. It’s perfect for Sophia and Lucien, who earn their HEA at Samhain. Don’t forget there’s a family tree for North Barrows that you can download free from the Delacroix site.

An Most Inconvenient Earl, book four of the Brides of North Barrows series of Regency romance novellas by Claire Delacroix
A Most Inconvenient Earl
The Brides of North Barrows Boxed Set, including four Regency romance novellas by Claire Delacroix
The Brides of North Barrows

As for my dragons, the next DragonFate paranormal romance, Dragon’s Wolf, is up for pre-order. It will be pubilshed in May.

Dragon's Wolf, book five of the DragonFate novels paranormal romances by Deborah Cooke
Dragon’s Wolf

Translations

As seems to be the norm now, I had a number new translations published in December. Let’s have a look at a summary:

In Spanish, my one translation teams is continuing with Flatiron Five Fitness and The True Love Brides—in December, I published Just Home for the Holidays and The Frost Maiden’s Kiss in Spanish editions. I also published Dragon’s Heart in Spanish.

Just Home for the Holidays, book seven of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke, Spanish edition
Español
The Frost Maiden's Kiss, book three of rht True Love Brides series of medieval Scottish romances by Claire Delacroix, Spanish edition
Español
Dragon's Heart, book three of the DragonFate novels paranormal romances by Deborah Cooke, Spanish edition
Español

Also this month, Just One Fake Date was published in a Portuguese edition for Brazil. There were a couple more translations that were pushed off to January, which is fine.

Phew! Next I’ll do a round-up of the year. That should be quite a post!

November Update

November was another busy month. I’ve given up thinking that things are ever going to slow down! Let’s take a look at what was completed.

New Release

Just the Wrong Twin, Sonia and Nate’s book, was published this month. Yay! I’m glad to have this one out in the world – and to see such wonderful reviews for it, too.

Five star review for Just the Wrong Twin, book 9 of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke

This means the plot bunnies are loose and I’m scribbling story ideas all over the place. I’ll tell you more about those as they come to fruition. For the moment, there are pre-orders for what’s in the works.

Pre-Orders

There are three pre-orders for upcoming contemporary romances: Aidan’s book, Just A Small Town Romance, which is book one of my upcoming contemporary romance series, the Heroes of Harte’s Harbor; When Annika Met Thom is the 10th and (at this point) final romance in the Flatiron Five Fitness series, coming in April; The Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Set 1 is the first series bundle and will publish in December. I’ve also got the pre-order up for The Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Set 2, coming in June. The third bundle will publish next December. You can find the links for all of them on the F5F Boxed Set page.

Just a Small Town Romance, book one of the Heroes of Harte's Harbor series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke
Just a Small Town Romance
When Annika Met Thom, book ten of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke
When Annika Met Thom
Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Set 1, including the first three contemporary romances in the series by Deborah Cooke
Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Set 1

Claire has three pre-orders right now: first, there’s The Hunter and the Heiress, book two of my Blood Brothers series of medieval Scottish romances. In March, the fourth and final book in the Brides of North Barrows series of Regency romance novellas, A Most Inconvenient Earl, will be published. There’s an upcoming bundle, the Brides of North Barrows Boxed Set, which will publish in August in ebook and trade paperback, too. This one was put together early because I saw this cover art and just fell in love. It’s perfect for Sophia and Lucien, who earn their HEA at Samhain.

The Hunter & the Heiress, book two of the Blood Brothers series of medieval romances by Claire Delacroix
The Hunter & the Heiress
An Most Inconvenient Earl, book four of the Brides of North Barrows series of Regency romance novellas by Claire Delacroix
A Most Inconvenient Earl
The Brides of North Barrows Boxed Set, including four Regency romance novellas by Claire Delacroix
The Brides of North Barrows Boxed Set

Then there are dragons. 🙂 I have a huge new bundle publishing today which includes the entire Dragonfire series, called (surprise!) Dragonfire: The Complete Series. I just love this cover! There’s also a new bundle of series starters coming in December called Dragons First, specially priced at just 99¢. (‘Tis the season that I think about bundles.) And the next DragonFate paranormal romance, Dragon’s Wolf, is up for pre-order, too.

Dragonfire: the Complete Series, a digital bundle including all fourteen paranormal romances in the Dragonfire series by Deborah Cooke
Dragonfire: The Complete Series
Dragons First, a digital bundle of three paranormal romance series starters by Deborah Cooke
Dragons First
Dragon's Wolf, book five of the DragonFate novels paranormal romances by Deborah Cooke
Dragon’s Wolf

Translations

Once again, I had several new translations published in November. Let’s have a look at a summary:

In Spanish, we’re continuing with Flatiron Five Fitness and have started The True Love Brides—in November, I published Just One Second Chance and The Highlander’s Curse in Spanish editions. I’m also publishing Dragon’s Heart in Spanish right now – it’s processing at the portals.

Just One Second Chance, book six of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke, Spanish edition
Español
This Highlander's Curse, book two of the True Love Brides series of medieval Scottish romances by Claire Delacroix, Spanish edition
Español

October Update

October seems to have flown by for me. Let’s take a look at what was completed.

Pre-Orders

There are three pre-orders for new titles that I told you about last month: Aidan’s book, Just A Small Town Romance, which is book one of my upcoming contemporary romance series, the Heroes of Harte’s Harbor; the next DragonFate Novel, Dragon’s Wolf, coming next spring, which is Arach and Wynter’s book; and book 2 in my Blood Brothers series by Claire Delacroix—The Hunter & the Heiress, coming in January.

Just a Small Town Romance, book one of the Heroes of Harte's Harbor series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke
Just a Small Town Romance
Dragon's Wolf, book five of the DragonFate novels paranormal romances by Deborah Cooke
Dragon’s Wolf
The Hunter & the Heiress, book two of the Blood Brothers series of medieval romances by Claire Delacroix
The Hunter & the Heiress

I’ve also started to add pre-orders for Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Sets. There will be three in all (at least that’s the current plan) and the first will be available in December. The Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Set 1 includes Just One Fake Date, Just One More Time and Just One Night Together. That pre-order is up now for December delivery. The Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Set 2 will be published in the spring: it includes Just One Hometown Hero, Two Weddings & a Baby and Just One Second Chance but I haven’t loaded the pre-order yet. I’ll get that done in November. You can read about the bundles on their new page, F5F Boxed Sets.

Claire also has a pre-order up for March for the fourth and final book in the Brides of North Barrows series of Regency romance novellas, A Most Inconvenient Earl. I had a lot of fun with Sebastian and Eurydice – their banter was great, and I just loved how she challenged his assumptions.

So, I have new releases scheduled for January, March, May and July of 2022, and F5F bundles coming in December 2021, June 2022 and December 2022. I’m hoping to publish the next Blood Brothers medieval romance in September 2022, and Harte’s Harbor #2 in November 2022. That will make for a busy year but I’m excited about all those stories.

Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Set 1, including the first three contemporary romances in the series by Deborah Cooke
The Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Set 1
Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Set 2, including books 4 to 6 of the contemporary romance series by Deborah Cooke
The Flatiron Five Fitness Boxed Set 2
An Most Inconvenient Earl, book four of the Brides of North Barrows series of Regency romance novellas by Claire Delacroix
A Most Inconvenient Earl

Just the Wrong Twin, book nine of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke

I pushed back the publication on Sonia and Nate’s story, Just the Wrong Twin, to November, as timing was getting tight. There were a couple of reasons for this: first, Sonia is a very private character and it took her a while to tell me her story. When she did, it trashed pretty much all my plans for the book. I’ve learned to trust characters when they do this, even though it’s inconvenient, and I’m really pleased with how this book has come together. We’re on track for November publication and I think you’ll love this story as much as I do.

I also was a bit delayed getting to Sonia and Nate because I wrote two Regency romance novellas this summer that weren’t on my schedule. The initial plan was for one novella to jump queue, but it ended up being two. I had an unexpected opportunity to participate in a multi-author anthology, which is always great promotion. I didn’t have a story to fit the Regency Christmas theme, though—A Duke By Any Other Name was committed to a different anthology—so I wrote the next story in the series, A Baron for All Seasons, which did not want to be a Christmas story. (Those characters…) That meant I was in for book four, A Most Inconvenient Earl, which is the story included in the anthology. It also means that the Brides of North Barrows series is completed, which is happy news all around.


New Releases

Twelve Lords for Christmas, a Regency romance holiday anthology

Claire had a new release in October. Twelve Lords for Christmas is that Regency romance Christmas anthology. It includes A Most Inconvenient Earl as well as eleven other holiday romances by bestselling authors.

From sexy earls to holiday ghosts, second chances to false engagements, find your Christmas cheer in these twelve sweet-to-spicy historical romance tales from bestselling and award-winning authors! The lord you’ve been looking for might be just a page-turn away…

Also for Claire, I enrolled more of her medieval romances in Kindle Unlimited this month. The exceptions are the Brides of North Barrows series and the Blood Brothers series, but everything else is in KU.


Translations

Once again, I had several new translations published in October. Let’s have a look at a summary:

In Spanish, we’re continuing with Flatiron Five Fitness and have started The True Love Brides—in October, I published Two Weddings & a Baby and The Renegade’s Heart in Spanish editions. I also published The Crusader’s Heart in German in October.

Two Weddings and a Baby, book five of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke, Spanish edition
Español
The Renegade's Heart, book one of the True Love Brides series of medieval Scottish romances by Claire Delacroix, Spanish edition
Español
The Crusader's Heart, book two of the Champions of St. Euphemia series of medieval romances by Claire Delacroix, German edition
Deutsch

And it’s already November…

September Update

September was another busy month! Let’s take a look at what was completed.

Pre-Orders

Probably the most exciting thing for me was listing the pre-order for Aidan’s book, Just A Small Town Romance, which is book one of my upcoming contemporary romance series, the Heroes of Harte’s Harbor.

I also have a cover for the next DragonFate Novel, which is Dragon’s Wolf, coming next spring and available for pre-order now. This is Arach and Wynter’s book—I’m looking forward to writing about a dragon shifter who’s fated mate is a wolf shifter with other plans.

I also listed the pre-order for January for the next book in my Blood Brothers series by Claire Delacroix—The Hunter & the Heiress will be available in ebook, trade paperback, hardcover large print and audio, too.

Just a Small Town Romance, book one of the Heroes of Harte's Harbor series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke
Just a Small Town Romance
Dragon's Wolf, book five of the DragonFate novels paranormal romances by Deborah Cooke
Dragon’s Wolf
The Hunter & the Heiress, book two of the Blood Brothers series of medieval romances by Claire Delacroix
The Hunter & the Heiress

Just the Wrong Twin, book nine of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke

I’m also continuing to work on Sonia and Nate’s story, Just the Wrong Twin. This is book nine in the Flatiron Five Fitness series and will be published in ebook and trade paperback in October. This is a friends-to-lovers, fling-to-forever, mistaken identity book and I really like it.

I’ve also made some decisions about Flatiron Five Fitness. There will be one more story in the series, which will probably be a novella, called When Annika Met Thom. I’m hoping to publish it in March. This means that it’s time for boxed sets—the first one will publish in December and will include the first three books in the series. I haven’t posted that pre-order yet, but will show you the covers (and hopefully have the first one loaded) at the end of October.

I’m leaving Flatiron Five Fitness for the moment and it will be in a good place for a break. I still have ideas for more stories at the club, but will focus on the Heroes of Harte’s Harbor for the time being. My hope is to publish a new book in that series every four months and the plan is for seven books in total. I have five covers already, so that’s motivating! These stories are all set in the same fictional world, so some F5F characters will make appearances in HHH. I haven’t forgotten Pierce’s new venture, Silver Fox Security, either.


New Releases

A Baron for All Seasons, book #3 of the Brides of North Barrows series of Regency romances by Claire Delacroix

Claire had a new release in September, A Baron for All Seasons, which is book three in my Brides of North Barrows series of Regency romance novellas. This is a second chance romance and one that many readers have been waiting on. I also finished the fourth and final book in this series, A Most Inconvenient Earl, during the summer and put it up for pre-order for March. It’ll also be included in a holiday anthology publishing in October.

Also for Claire, I enrolled most of her medieval romances in Kindle Unlimited this month. The exceptions are the Brides of North Barrows series and the Blood Brothers series, but everything else is in KU.


Translations

Once again, I had several new translations published in August. Let’s have a look at a summary:

In Spanish, we’re continuing with Flatiron Five Fitness and have finished The Jewels of Kinfairlie—in September, I published Just One Hometown Hero and the Ballad of Rosamunde in Spanish editions. I also published Dragon’s Kiss in Italian in September.

Just One Hometown Hero, book four of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke, Spanish edition
Español
Español
Dragon's Kiss, book two of the DragonFate novels series of paranormal romances by Deborah Cooke, Italian edition
Italiano

Well, that gives me a sense of accomplishment! On to October…

August Update

August was a busy month!

Pre-Orders

First of all, I finished two Regency romance novellas and listed then for pre-order. A Baron for All Seasons turned out to not be a Christmas romance, so it reverted to its original cover and will be published in September. An Most Inconvenient Earl is a Christmas romance, as well as Eurydice’s story. It finishes out the Brides of North Barrows series – it will be included in a Christmas anthology, coming in October, then available on its own in March.

A Baron for All Seasons, book #3 of the Brides of North Barrows series of Regency romances by Claire Delacroix
A Baron for All Seasons
An Most Inconvenient Earl, book four of the Brides of North Barrows series of Regency romance novellas by Claire Delacroix
A Most Inconvenient Earl

Just the Wrong Twin, book nine of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke

I’ve also been working on Sonia and Nate’s story, Just the Wrong Twin, which is a lot of fun. The first third of a book always involves a lot of back and forth for me, and reconsideration of the structure, as well as getting to know more about the characters.

You can see some of my ideas about Nate and Sonia on the Pinterest board for the book. This story will be published in October.

I’m talking to the cover designer about Aidan’s book. Since that will be first in a new series, getting this cover right will take a little longer. I have set up the pre-order at Apple and Amazon for this book, since they’ll allow it withough a cover. Just A Small Town Romance is coming next July.. This story is a lot of fun, a second chance romance with a lot of energy between the couple. I love Aidan already, but Meredith is just so perfect for him – she’s no pushover for his easygoing charm, or at least it seems that way to Aidan…

Dragon's Kiss, book two of the DragonFate novels, a series of paranormal romances by Deborah Cooke

Over in the land of paranormal romance, my dragons are stirring again. I have a pre-order up for the next DragonFate novel. This one is Arach and Wynter’s story, another enemies-to-lovers story with a reluctant mate. Wynter has her own agenda and it doesn’t include a firestorm, a hot dragon shifter, or a baby. Can Arach change her mind? Dragon’s Wolf will be available in May. The pre-orders are up at Apple and Amazon even though the cover is still in the works.

I also have a flash sale on the other three books in the series until the end of August, so you can catch it if you’re quick. If you haven’t started to read that series, now’s the time to catch up!


New Releases

I published a new boxed set from Claire of series starters called First Knights. This sampler is a good deal and a chance to see which of my medieval romance series you like best. It’s just $2.99US through the end of August.

The Flatiron Five Tattoo Boxed Set came out at the end of July, but I’ll include it here to balance the page. 🙂

First Knights, a boxed set of four medieval romance series starters by Claire Delacroix
First Knights Boxed Set
The Flatiron Five Tattoo Boxed Set, including all four contemporary romances in the series by Deborah Cooke
Flatiron Five Tattoo Boxed Set
Time Travel romances by Claire Delacroix

Also for Claire, my time travel romances came out of Kindle Unlimited and were republished in wide distribution in August.


Translations

I had a bumper crop of new translations published in August. Let’s have a look at a summary:

In Spanish, we’re continuing with Flatiron Five Fitness and The Jewels of Kinfairlie—we’ll finish F5F by the end of 2021 as well as The True Love Brides. I have a new Portuguese translation of The Crusader’s Heart and that translator is working on The Crusader’s Kiss. Another translator has finished Maeve’s Book of Beasts in Portuguese—she’s continuing with Dragon’s Kiss. A different Spanish translator has finished Dragon’s Kiss and is working on Dragon’s Heart. And one of my Italian translation teams has finished Dragon’s Kiss. They’re going to work on An Elegy for Melusine next.

Just One Night Together, book three of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke, Spanish edition
Español
The Snow White Bride, book three of the Jewels of Kinfairlie series of medieval romances by Claire Delacroix, Spanish edition
Español
The Crusader's Heart, book two of the Champions of St. Euphemia series of medieval romances by Claire Delacroix, Portuguese edition
Portuguës
Maeve's Book of Beasts, the prequel to the DragonFate novels paranormal romances by Deborah Cooke, Portuguese edition
Portuguës
Dragon's Kiss, book two of the DragonFate novels series of paranormal romances by Deborah Cooke, Spanish edition
Español

Well, that gives me a sense of accomplishment! On to September…

A Mistake

On Friday, I made a mistake and have the email replies to show for it. I set up my first contemporary romance newsletter for Spanish editions of my books and, instead of sending it to the Spanish newsletter subscribers, I sent it to the English newsletter subscribers.

Oops.

This is actually a bit too easy to do with a suite of newsletters like mine. In a newsletter service account, the subscribers are all in one pool, so to speak. They’re divided into groups: any subscriber can belong to multiple groups or just one group. Subscribers are added to groups in different ways: for my lists, the subscribers choose to subscribe to a list. That’s the only way they get added – I never ever add people to my list without their consent, or add subscribers to different lists than the one(s) they’ve chosen. So, the newsletter service puts subscribers in the right group, based on the sign-up form they used or the link they followed. That all makes sense, doesn’t it?

For example, Heroes & Happy Endings is the newsletter for my Deborah Cooke contemporary romances in English. If you follow that link and sign up, you’ll be added to that group for my contemporary romances in English.

You could also subscribe to the newsletter for my historical romances, or the one for my paranormal romances, or for any of those in specific languages for which I have translations. You could have signed up for a guided toour of the Ravensmuir books, which is a newsletter sequence for my historical romance readers. There are a lot of groups on my newsletter dashboard and many subscribers belong to more than one.

Last week, I ticked the box for the Spanish contemporary romance readers group, but I didn’t un-tick the box for the English contemporary romance readers group. It was ticked because I copied the English newsletter to make sure the Spanish one was consistent, then changed out all the copy and links and images – but not the recipient list. It was that easy. I couldn’t call back the emails but I fixed the setting for future Spanish newsletters.

But here’s the wrinkle: if you thought you had been added to another newsletter list without your consent, you might have clicked on the Unsubscribe button at the bottom of the Spanish email. That would be a reasonable thing to do – except it won’t quite work out the way you might have expected. Because the newsletter went to the wrong list, if you unsubscribed from that Spanish newsletter Friday or Saturday, you actually unsubscribed from the English newsletter list. I know. It was a simple error with quite spectacular ramifications.

So this post is just to let you know – if you unsubscribed this past weekend in response to that newsletter, you won’t get any more English newsletters unless you sign up again.

Look up, way up, for that sign-up link.

July Update

Since we’re in the lull before the storm – as I move to having new releases finished several months before publication – I thought it would make sense to start giving you a monthly update of my progress. This way, you’ll see that things are happening, even though there aren’t covers etc. to share just yet. I’ve been less active on social media this year, which is great for my writing but not so great for visibility. Writing makes me happier, so I’m going to continue on this path.

Let’s have a look at what’s in the works.

A Baron for All Seasons, book three of the Brides of North Barrows series of Regency romances by Claire Delacroix

I’ve been writing several projects simultaneously, which is always a happy situation when I can make it happen. I have nearly finished A Baron for All Seasons, which is book #3 of my Brides of North Barrows series of Regency romance novellas. (It might be done by the time you read this.) The plan is for it to be included in a holiday anthology this fall – details to come – then it will be published on its own, probably in March or so. This is Anthea and Rupert’s story – we met them both in book #2, A Duke by Any Other Name. Novellas always take me longer than I expect: even though they have a lower word count, I have to be more careful with the structure to fit everything in.

I’ve also written about half of Eurydice’s story, which will be book #4 and the final story in the series. Details on that to come, though it will probably have a simultaneous (or close to it) publication with book #3. It’s interesting to me how different the two stories are in some ways: Anthea’s book is a second chance romance with elements from previous books to resolve, too, while Eurydice’s book is straightforward fun. Moving between the two stories helps me make progress.

The Pinterest board is still in work.

There will be a boxed set of this series available in ebook and trade paperback, likely in time for Christmas 2022. (It felt odd to type that date!)


Just the Wrong Twin, book nine of the Flatiron Five Fitness series of contemporary romances by Deborah Cooke

I’ve also been working on Sonia and Nate’s story, Just the Wrong Twin, which is a lot of fun. The first third of a book always involves a lot of back and forth for me, and reconsideration of the structure, as well as getting to know more about the characters. You can see some of my ideas about Nate and Sonia on the Pinterest board for the book. This story will be published in October.

In the Flatiron Five world, there’s a new boxed set for Flatiron Five Tattoo, available in both ebook and trade paperback. I’m debating how to break up the main series into boxed sets (two or three?) and you should see some thing available soon.

When I get stuck on Just the Wrong Twin, I’ve been diving into Aidan’s book – again, this is a similar dynamic. Sonia and Nate’s story has a lot of elements to carry forward from previous books, some that need to be resolved in this book, and I need to ensure consistency with the existing world of Flatiron Five Fitness. Aidan’s book, in contrast, will be the launch of a new series with new characters. There aren’t that many details about that corner of my fictional world that have been defined. There’s a Pinterest board for the new series, as well, but I haven’t made it public yet – I’ll do that when the book has a title, cover, and publication date. For the moment, though, I’m loving how sparks fly between Aidan and Meredith. Talk about opposites attracting! My hope is to have the first two books at least publish next summer, so we can have a more rapid publication schedule. That means getting them written and edited ahead of time.


My other project in the works is the next book in my Blood Brothers series, The Hunter & the Heiress, which I’d like to see published in December or January. (Fingers crossed.) I’ve booked the narrator for the audio already and am trying to have a simultaneous audio-ebook-print publication for the first time.

Book #1, The Wolf & the Witch, is available now. Here’s the Pinterest board for the series:

First Knights, a boxed set of four medieval romance series starters by Claire Delacroix

I have a new boxed set from Claire of series starters called First Knights, which will be published in August. This sampler is a good deal and a chance to see which of my medieval romance series you like best.

I’m also looking at updating some covers. My time travel romances have come out of Kindle Unlimited and are due for a fresh look. I’ll wait on the new covers before republishing them at the other portals. My cover designer is really busy this summer!


Translations are continuing, too. I have two new Spanish editions each month and the pre-orders are available for them through the end of the year. So far, my team has completed the Champions of St. Euphemia series and Flatiron Five Tattoo. We’re working on the Jewels of Kinfairlie and Flatiron Five Fitness now. The full-length romances are available in both ebook and trade paperback in translation.

I also have German, Italian and Portuguese translations of my medieval romances available and more in the works.

DragonFate is also being translated, which is quite cool. Maeve’s Book of Beasts is available in Italian now, as well as in Spanish, and I expect Dragon’s Kiss to be available in both languages in August or September. Maeve’s Book of Beasts should be available in Portuguese then, too.

And that’s where I’m at for the end of July. 🙂 I’ll keep writing (and weeding my garden) and will give you another update in a month. I hope you’re well!

Building a World Guide

This past week, I’ve been talking in my reader group on Facebook about keeping track of fictional worlds. Since compiling the world guide for Dragonfire – which was a seemingly endless job – I knew I needed a better system. I’ve been using a new tool this past year, mostly for DragonFate, and am pleased with it. Since people were interested, I thought I’d share that here, as well.

I’ve tried a lot of methods for keeping track of my worldbuilding and character lists. The tried and true is a stack of index cards. Each character gets a card with his or her pertinent details. Locations that recur get a card, again with any mentioned details. I still use index cards for Flatiron Five Fitness and Flatiron Five Tattoo. I use a highlighter to mark the side of each card with that character or place’s first appearance in the series. (The index cards are lined. On the right edge, I colour between the first and second line for anything in book one. Between the second and third line means that element or character is introduced in book two, etc.) This means I can easily grab all pertinent cards, and also helps me find the first written description of any given element in the book manuscript.

This works well for contemporary romances but I find that paranormal romances have too many elements. This index card system gets overwhelmed quickly and doesn’t offer me enough ways to search for details.

I’ve tried other systems like Scrivener but have settled on this one, called Plottr, for the moment. I don’t want to create in the software, as I’m perfectly happy to use Word for that — actually, I’d be happy with a typewriter or writing longhand. I prefer as little interference from tech as possible when I’m writing.

Plottr is intended for plotting a new work, but I don’t plot in such detail in advance. I use it as a worldguide. I compile the timeline for each book after it’s written. This is kind of backwards, but it works for me. Let’s have a look.

Here’s the series page from Plottr for DragonFate. I need to update the covers since the second two now have gold type instead of grey, but here you can see the series at a glance. Each book has its own detail page but I like being able to see the series. (And yes, there are more books below this, but you can’t see them yet!)

The DragonFate Novels tracked in Plottr by Deborah Cooke

Here’s the plotting page for Dragon’s Mate.

Dragon's Mate by Deborah Cooke, timeline in Plottr compiled by Deborah Cooke

The timeline is a grid, almost like a spreadsheet. You can add as many columns to the right as you want and as many rows at the bottom as you like. The default is for each column to be a chapter, and the scenes to cascade below that, presumably in order. I have more than one plotline in the series, and want to track them in order of events. I also don’t plot by chapter. There are a number of templates included in the software for plotting, but for me this is more about tracking the series once each book is written than plotting in advance.

The timeline is more important to me, so I put it in the top line. The chapter line is a reference to the book manuscript, in case I want to double check any detail. The green line is the main plot: in this case, Hadrian and Rania’s firestorm and romance. There are two longer slow-burn story arcs in this series, and they’re tracked below: Sebastian and Sylvia, then Theo and Mel. There are a lot of magickal elements and items in this series and I track them on the next line. Finally, I track mentions of the rest of the Pyr. (Ignore that box with the dotted outline on the last line: it thought I wanted to add an item when I was taking the screen shot.)

Each box is a scene, and I list them in order from left to right. I end up with 70 columns or so for each book, but I can find anything later and quickly.

If I click on one of those scenes, like the very first Fae Attack, that opens a detail card:

Opening scene of Dragon's Mate by Deborah Cooke in Plottr

Here I can add a more detailed description of events, plus I can choose the characters in the scene from my character list, and choose the location from my list of places. This means that later, I can filter the timeline by character or location. This is hugely useful when cross-checking what secondary characters have witnessed or heard. (I don’t use the tags as yet.)

Of course, I can look at characters or places and get a similar card for details. Here’s the card for Arach.

Arach Knights, one of the Pyr in DragonFate by Deborah Cooke, tracked in Plottr

The character list is sorted into groups – this is the list of main characters, but there are secondary and other characters. I’ve added a field for “kind” so I can keep track of my shifters. On the Character page, I can filter by kind or by specific words, which helps me track (for example) the selkies that I’ve specifically named already in the series. I put unnamed characters here as well – “Nameless Wolf Shifter” – and they often get names later.

I like the sort and filter functions. If I forget the names of Rania’s twelve brothers, for example, I can just sort by name and scroll down to “Rania’s brother”.

Rania's brothers in Dragon's Mate by Deborah Cooke, documented in Plottr

There are other options to display your plot as well. I use the timeline, but here’s the outline that can be compiled from the timeline.

Dragon's Mate by Deborah Cooke outlined in Plottr.

The colored boxes indicate which storyline the scene is from.

You can see on the menu bar that there’s a display for Places, which is similar to the one for Characters that I showed you above with Arach’s listing.

Bones from the DragonFate novels by Deborah Cooke, documented in the places list in Plottr

In my version of the software (which is older) the book list isn’t automatically populated for each location. It seems this feature could be easily added and it may have been since I updated my version.

When I set up a new book in Plottr, the next one in the series, I copy the plotlines – they’re the same for each book. In the first column, I list the outstanding items or status of each and also the goal for that line in the next book. So for the next book on the Magick line, I’ve noted that the gem of the hoard is destroyed and that Maeve is a lizard, Fae is no longer a separate realm, the Fae weapons that slice between realms are destroyed, and the Regalian magick is gone. One question is how earth magick has reasserted itself. Another is what happened to Bryant. A third is what happened to the earth magick charms mentioned in Dragon’s Heart that were given to species of Others. And on and on. This will be modified when the book is done and I create the final timeline for it, but gives me a snapshot of what I need to address (or can consider) in the next book.

One of the great things is that as I move deeper into the series I can easily locate all previous mentions of the two longer arc stories. I’m compiling a timeline for Sylvia and Sebastian, for example, which includes all mentions of their interactions so far – and the gaps – with dates and locations. That will make it easier for me to see where I can fill gaps and list questions that are outstanding. I’ll do the same for Mel and Theo, as well.

Plottr also has an export function to Word which I haven’t tried yet. That would make it simpler to compile an actual world guide when that time comes.

I’m sure that I’m only using a small percentage of this software’s capabilities, but it’s working well for me. I find that many applications are almost overwhelming and tend to focus on what I need to get done instead of exploring all the options. Because it is essentially a spreadsheet, this one makes the most sense to me. (I always want to lose myself in the story, not in the tool.)

There’s a peek behind the scenes for this week! I hope you found it interesting, or, if you’re a writer yourself, that it gave you food for thought.

Lemonade for 2021

Happy New Year! Welcome to 2021.

The new year is always a chance to change things up and try something different. I don’t make resolutions, but I do make plans. 🙂 Sometimes they come together and sometimes they don’t – 2020 was certainly a good example of things not proceeding according to plan. What about this year?

One of the changes brought by Covid-19 is the produce section at my local grocery store. The produce is a lot less fresh than it used to be, and sometimes it’s more expensive. The discounted produce section has grown and often that produce isn’t much different than what’s at the front of the store. I always check it out. This week, there were lemons in the discount bin, probably hundreds of them. I brought home more lemons than I need, because you don’t often get 14 lemons in Canada for less than $1 and I couldn’t resist them. Then I had to figure out what to do with them.

This brings me to an old saying which I’m choosing as my slogan for 2021:

When life gives you lemons, make lemonade

2020 gave many of us a lot of lemons, maybe too many lemons to manage well. But maybe you’ve caught your stride in this new world of ours or can find a better rhythm. I know a writer who treated 2020 like a personal retreat, focused on her work and produced more new books than she ever had before. I wish I’d done that myself since people were reading more last year and hungry for new content. (I was busy catching lemons.) My plan is to give that strategy a try this year and put this situation to work for me.

What about you? Is there something you’ve always wanted to try? I learned to make sourdough bread last year, which was new for me and now is part of my weekly routine. Is there a book you’ve been waiting to read? An online course you’ve been wanting to take? A new skill you’ve never gotten around to learning? If you’re in lock-down, quarantine or self-isolating, this might be the perfect opportunity to do any or all of those things, and create some lemonade of your own.

I’ll tell you a bit next week about what’s in my writing and publishing plans for 2021 and will post my monthly feature on Monday, but today, have a think about what you can change to have more lemonade in your life. Let’s make 2021 a year of lemonade!

As for those lemons, I’m working my way through them. I made Mr. Math’s favorite sour cream coffee cake already (it’s lemon) and will be making our version of Chicken Piccata this weekend (we grill the chicken instead of breading and frying it). I’ll make my mom’s lemon loaf recipe today and put some in the freezer to give to her the next time we meet. I’ve always wanted to find a recipe for lemon poppyseed muffins. We’ll have Madhur Jaffrey’s Lemony Coriander Chicken for dinner one night, too. The list goes on and every single item will be yummy. I’ll be out of lemons in no time!