Publication day – Jill Steeples

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By Jill Steeples

Thank you so much for inviting me on to your blog today to introduce my new book, Wedding Bells at The Dog and Duck. I absolutely loved writing this story as it was such a pleasure to return to the idyllic village of Little Leyton and to catch up with all the characters that frequent the village pub. This is the third book in the Dog and Duck series, but don’t worry if you haven’t read the previous books, this can be read as a standalone too.

While this is the eighth book that I’ve had published, and my third with Aria Fiction, the thrill of publication day never fades. After the many months of working on the story, getting the first draft down, going through pages of structural edits, then copy edits and proof-reading, it’s such an exciting feeling to know that your book is finally going out into the world. It really is a collaborative process and I feel very lucky to work with the talented editors at Aria.

Of course, it’s a pretty scary time too because publication day is always accompanied by anxiety, wondering how well the story will be received. This is especially true when writing a series as readers have a level of expectation and as an author the last thing you want to do is let them down.

Publication day has to be cause for celebration though. There are some small rituals that I like to take part in just to fly the flag for the new book. As well as visiting some great blogs like this one, I like to order some swag that I can offer in giveaways, such as paperbacks of previous novels, fridge magnets, notebooks and chocolates. It’s a bit of fun and a way of bringing attention to the book. Something else I do is bake cupcakes and decorate them with rice toppers showing the cover of the book – a great photo opportunity! On publication day you can be guaranteed to find me daring to peek at the laptop, eating cake and cracking open a bottle of something fizzy.

Like Ellie Browne, the main character in the Dog and Duck books, I think it’s important to mark any special occasion with a bit of a celebration. As landlady of the local pub, Ellie certainly knows how to put on a good bash – she’s used to putting on all sorts of events for her loyal customers. In this latest book she’s asked to help with the arrangements for her best friend’s country wedding. With Ellie’s mind preoccupied with all things bridal including dresses, seating plans, menus and flowers, it’s only natural that her thoughts turn to what choices she might make if she was in her friend’s shoes.

The trouble is her partner Max Golding has his own very definite ideas about marriage, and they don’t seem to coincide with Ellie’s plans. And with so many other demands on Ellie’s time, including health concerns about one of her nearest and dearest, a stranger in the village causing all sorts or problems and that big and sticky question hovering over her relationship with Max, she’s worried that the wedding bells in Little Leyton might never ring for her.

Still, with two royal weddings to look forward to this year, and a big wedding taking place in Little Leyton, it’s definitely going to be a summer of love. If you’re a fan of romance, then hopefully you’ll enjoy being swept away by the preparations for Little Leyton’s big event this year. I thoroughly enjoyed writing about the latest goings-on at The Dog and Duck, and hope readers, old and new alike, will enjoy the story just as much.

Jill Steeples lives in a small market town in Bedfordshire with her husband and two children. When she’s not writing, she enjoys reading, walking, baking cakes, eating them and drinking wine. Wedding Bells at The Dog & Duck is out now.

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