Friday, January 29, 2016

D is for Destiny Paradise

Margaret talks about her first book

I was inspired to write this blog when a friend on Facebook posted that she had just bought a copy of my book, Destiny Paradise. It was a Harlequin edition with a different front cover to my English copy, and I was both pleased and flattered that she had added it to her collection.
Destiny Paradise was my very first book, and it took many re-writes to make it publishable. Because I didn’t know much about writing when I started it I joined a writer’s group, and was fortunate that the lady who ran it wrote for Mills & Boon. She took me under her wing and if she was still alive today I know she would be proud to see that I have now written over 80 books. It would never have happened if it was not for her.  And - it was all done on an old-fashioned typewriter! The thought of it now sends shivers down my spine.  Below are the opening paragraphs:

“Would you mind turning that contraption down?”

Lorna glanced up, mildly curious as to whom the aggressive tones were being addressed. Piercing blue eyes met her own; dark glasses tilted towards wiry brown hair which stuck up at a rakish angle as though the owner had run his fingers despairingly through it.

“I said, would you mind turning it down.”

Clearly he was speaking to her, although Lorna could not think why her transistor should cause such annoyance. She had adjusted the volume so that the music was audible without it being unbearably loud. Though judging by the way the man in the next chair was glaring at her, even this was too much for him. She raised her delicately arched brows and said coolly: “If I lower it much more I might as well turn it off.”

“That’s right.” His voice was hard, not unlike the steely eyes. “Then perhaps I can concentrate.”

Lorna noticed for the first time the sheaf of papers in his hand, the open briefcase at his side, wondering why anyone should choose to study what looked like the lines from a play on the open deck of a liner. Perhaps if he had approached her differently she might have agreed, but as it was his attitude angered her. “I’m sorry,” she returned politely, “but I’m enjoying this music. I don’t recall any rules about not playing transistors. Why not go to your cabin? You won’t be disturbed there.”

“I happen to prefer fresh air,” he snapped. “And I was getting on fine until you chose to sit next to me with that – that noise box.”

“That noise box happens to be playing my favourite piece of music,” retorted Lorna angrily, hearing the sounds of Handel’s Water Music, “and I’d like to listen to it – if you wouldn’t mind.” She knew she was being childish, but his manner irritated her.

His wide lips compressed into a thin, tight line at Lorna’s words. With a sigh he slid his sunglasses back into position and lowered his head over the papers.

What an unreasonable man, thought Lorna angrily. What an unfair request! Pop music might have disturbed him, yes – but surely not this. It was soothing and surely would help whim study? Anyway, if he chose to work in public he must expect to be disturbed. Why should other people have to suffer because of him?

A few minutes earlier she had contemplated going for a swim, but now some perverse streak made her remain on her canvas chair. She would not like to give her neighbour the satisfaction of thinking he had driven her away.



  1. I well remember those days of the typewriter - and the correction papers = and changing the ribbon! All as dated now as the 'transistor' in your first novel! The world has changed so much since then!

    1. I wonder what it will be like in another forty years time?

  2. I can totally relate to your heroine here!

  3. An unsufferable hero. The best kind!!

    1. The best kind in fiction, but I don't think I'd like to meet one in real life.

  4. I'm completely hooked with these opening paragraphs. It's always fun to see how situations like this are sorted out between the hero and heroine and eventually lead to love.