Friday, 18 August 2017

Floribunda and the Best Men

Welcome to Sally's book-a-day-for-2017 blog. If unfamiliar with the blog, scroll down.

Floribunda and the Best Men (2017) (Post 231)

Floribunda and the Best Men is another story in the Fairy in the Bed series. It follows a few weeks after Pen and Ink  (Post 204), but although it does deal with Matters Arising (as Flori puts it), it can be read as a stand-alone. 

Plus-sized florist Floribunda "Flori" Alexandris has no idea why Pen Swan should invite her to be a bridesmaid at her wedding, but she agrees anyway. At the church, she encounters the two best men; the biggest Scottish ginger she's ever seen and a cool blond Sir Galahad type. She has no idea which one she should shake hands with first, or whose hand to accept for the bridal waltz. Flori likes the look of them both, but that's nothing to their magnetic reaction to her. How to choose? The men have their own creative solution, but there's something exceedingly odd about Hamish McTavish and Gervais St Clair. They don't offer to drive her van, and when she runs off the road in the middle of the night, no mention of women drivers crosses their lips. So that settles it. They can't possibly be human.
Floribunda and the Best Men is story number seven in this series and although every story stands alone, each also adds something to the building blocks of the series' world. The main characters of #3, one of whom played a large role in Pen and Ink (#6) appear again, as do two characters from #4 who will be main characters in a later story. 

This story marks a couple of firsts for me in writing, which, after 300+ books, just proves we're always learning and trying something new. When I wrote Pen and Ink I made the conscious decision to have an older couple as main characters, so Pen is forty-two. I was holding an email conversation with my editor for the series and asked if she liked stories with older heroines or heroes, and she remarked she really liked BBW stories. I didn't know this term, so I looked it up and thus Flori, (or to give her her full name, Floribunda Rose Alexandris) was born. Flori is a florist who specialises in BBB or big beautiful blossoms, taking the radical approach that flowers should be colourful, perfumed and real. An encounter with Pen Swan, on the hunt for flowers for her wedding, brings Flori into a life-changing experience, and helps her solve the mystery of a childhood friend nobody else remembers. It's been bothering her for twenty-six years.  I had a few surprises along the way with this one. It was the longest to date, which meant I could explore the world of Over There a bit more. When cover time came around, I spent a while looking for pictures to show the art department. They source their own pictures, but it's a little easier if they have an idea of what the character(s) should look like. I found some pics for my Pinterest board, but the model they found is far more what I had in mind. I was pleased with the pictured Flori because my only other venture into a plus-sized heroine (several years ago now) skirted the issue with a cartoon cover. 

Floribunda and the Best Men is a very new book... published today. To see it in ebook go to  BUY HERE
To see my author page with a lot of information about the characters in this series and their world, go to The next one in the series, which is called The Courting of Eileen, comes out later this year.


Sally is Sally Odgers; author, manuscript assessor, editor, anthologist and reader. She runs and Prints Charming Books. (Sally is me, by the way, and I am lots of other things too, but these are the relevant ones for now.)

The goal for 2017 is to write a post a day profiling the background behind one of my books; how it came to be written, what it's about, and any things of note that happened along the way. If you're an author, an aspiring author, a reader or just someone who enjoys windows into worlds, you might find this fun. The books are not in any special order, but will be assigned approximate dates, and pictures, where they exist. If you enjoyed a post, or want to ask about any of my books or my manuscript assessment service.

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