I met novelist Rosie Dean (aka Jan Sprenger) through the Romantic Novelists’ Association in the UK. We’ve always hit it off, and when we both decided around the same time to ‘go indie’ and publish our own novels, we set off on the journey together. Actually, Rosie was a few weeks ahead of me – so I was constantly picking her brains about how to go about things. After all, she had all that experience! A few months later, while I decided to accept a contract with Accent Press, Rosie opted to stay indie. She loves being in control, she tells me! Let’s find out more.

janSo, Rosie, tell us about the books you have published.

Hi Jenny. As you know, I write romantic comedies. The first to hit the market, Millie’s Game Plan, is about a workaholic who takes a grip on her future and draws up a plan to find Mr Right. When the first man to float her boat – Josh Warwick – doesn’t meet the criteria on her wish-list she moves on to a sexy wine merchant – Lex Marshal – who ticks all the boxes. But when Millie faces danger and betrayal, she wonders if her dream man might not be Mr Right after all. So, who will be…?

The second is Vicki’s Work of Heart. This is possibly closest to my own heart, as I used to be an art teacher and have a soft spot for vets – what’s not to like? They’re kind to animals and save lives. After being stranded at the altar, art teacher Vicki Marchant seizes her freedom and travels to France to paint. It’s her time. Nobody is going to get in the way of her ambition – definitely no men.  Vicki learns two things: some men are difficult to resist, and choosing the right one is not always easy.

They sound good! Actually, I know they are good, because I’ve read both of them! What’s the latest one, and what inspired it?

Chloe’s Rescue Mission was sparked off when I was watching an episode of Dragons’ Den, in which a business woman accepted the offer of finance and support from one of the male dragons. When they shook hands and offered the obligatory cheek-to-cheek kiss, I sensed a spark of attraction. What, I thought, might happen if this business relationship turned into something else? And so the seed was set.

My hero is Scottish and called Duncan, but that’s where any association between the dragon and my character ends!

So you say! I’ll have to read it and make my own mind up. Talking of characters, do you see anything of yourself in any of your characters?

Absolutely – but only the good ones! Actually, that’s not strictly true, and certainly it’s not always in the heroine.

While I was writing Chloe’s Rescue Mission, I treated myself to a fancy coffee machine, which produces the best coffee. Poor old Chloe has had to move in with her mother and put all her stuff into storage. She can’t afford proper coffee so has to make do with instant. She pines for that lovely coffee from her beautiful machine, and remembers stroking its glossy red cover. Yep, that’s me!

I empathise with that!  So, when you’re writing, do you work out all the plot points beforehand? How does it work?

I would so love to be a seasoned plotter. I’m sure it would make life easier. I do have a rough plot for the book, and for specific scenes. When I write those scenes, they flow really quickly. However, I really enjoy the alchemy of writing, where the mind suggests new routes I hadn’t previously considered. I once started to write a young adult novel with a certain goal in mind. Part way through the early chapters, I felt my character was becoming boring, and a scene developed where she shoplifted an item of clothing, much against my original plan. As a result, the whole story changed to become edgier and – I believe – better.

Is there another work on the go?

Forelands Beach IOWYes – another romantic comedy in which my heroine, Gabriella Gill-Martin – Gigi – faces a whole bunch of financial challenges and compromises in her life, when her father is arrested. Coming from a privileged background, she finds it hard to swap champagne for fizzy water, and a top of the range car for a second-hand bike. But she learns life is not about having what you want but wanting what you have. I’m setting the book on the Isle of Wight, a beautiful and quirky part of the British Isles, where I’ve been lucky enough to spend a lot of my time. My hero is truly scrummy. Picture Aidan Turner with long curly hair and a beard. Oh. That IS Aidan Turner. This painting of Forelands Beach on the Isle of Wight is by a pal of mine, Charlotte Hodge Thomas.

You took the decision to remain an indie author. Why? And what have you learned?
The decision to stay indie wasn’t an easy one. I had the opportunity to sign with a publisher, last summer, but after two weeks of self-searching and sleepless nights, decided I wasn’t ready. The designer had almost completed my third cover, and plans for marketing it were underway. I was the captain of my own ship and quite enjoying it. When the prospect of relinquishing that control hove into view, I just didn’t feel it was time. That’s not to say I would never sign with a publisher, I just felt I had things I still wanted to achieve on my own. I have learned that going it alone is blooming hard work but I’ve proved I can do it – even if on a modest scale.


As an indie you don’t have the advantage of an editor to advise and criticise your writing. How do you cope without one?

Actually, I do. My current editor is Hannah M Davis, whose opinion and insights I value very highly. I love being made to question my decisions – regarding character arc, pace or action – that aren’t working. Sometimes I stand by my choices but if my inner voice tells me the editor is on the money, then I’m very grateful for the chance to change and improve the original. I don’t think it’s wise to trust my instincts on a whole book. Another point of view gives me more confidence to progress.

I also have a couple of beta readers, who read the book very close to its completion. Both are book lovers and have worked in libraries. They give me a sanity check on the story, highlight any areas which don’t work for them, and pick up on grammatical errors.

Thanks for talking to me, Rosie – do come back in a year and let us know how the indie career is working out? 

Thanks Jenny!

Rosie says: I write romantic fiction with a sense of humour and, sometimes, a sense of the ridiculous. Because we all know life and love aren’t exactly how we’d like them to be. Most of my books are set in Europe, with sassy British heroines. When not writing, I love to cook and to read, I even read in the car (talking books) and have notched up countless unnecessary miles as a result.  Not one to spend hours in the gym or pounding the pavement, I prefer Yoga and Pilates, which means I can tone and tighten whilst watching TV. Twitter

email rosiedean.author@gmail.com

website/blog www.rosie-dean.com

Facebook www.facebook.com/RosieDeanWriter

Twitter https://twitter.com/RosieDeanAuthor

ChloeCoverSmallChloe’s Rescue Mission

To save her grandfather’s legacy – The Joshua Steele Theatre – Chloe Steele sells her services to the highest bidder. Enter leisure tycoon, business angel and playboy, Duncan Thorsen. But when the bank calls in the debts and the council enforces closure, just how much paparazzi exposure and wheeling and dealing can a girl stomach?

Chloe’s Rescue Mission – UK:


Chloe’s Rescue Mission – US:



If you love a good romcom, Rosie Dean’s books are for you!

13 thoughts on “If you love a good romcom, Rosie Dean’s books are for you!

  • June 1, 2015 at 1:43 pm

    Thanks for having me on your blog, Jenny – and thanks for being there for me!


  • June 5, 2015 at 7:31 pm

    Great interview! Being a plotter–sometimes, too much I fear– I particularly liked your comment, “I really enjoy the alchemy of writing, where the mind suggests new routes I hadn’t previously considered. ”

    Sarah #eNovelAuthorsAtWork

    • June 6, 2015 at 8:36 am

      Yes. Do you think Rosie can write, Sarah? [grins] Thanks for dropping by my blog!

    • June 6, 2015 at 8:55 am

      I sometimes wonder why these ideas didn’t pop into my head when I was planning. I guess the logical ‘planning’ part of the brain is in a different lobe from the free creative part.

  • June 5, 2015 at 7:34 pm

    I can’t think of two authors whose books are more delightful than Jenny Harper’s and Rosie Dean’s! Wonderful interview!

  • June 5, 2015 at 10:23 pm

    I’m definitely going to read Chloe’s Rescue Mission now that I know where the idea came from. Terrific interview. Thanks, Jenny and Rosie.

    Dale Furse

    • June 6, 2015 at 8:37 am

      Thanks for dropping in, Dale!

    • June 6, 2015 at 8:56 am

      Thank you, Dale. If you do, I’d love to hear what you thought of Chloe’s journey.

  • June 5, 2015 at 11:15 pm

    Re your comment: “I write romantic fiction with a sense of humour and, sometimes, a sense of the ridiculous.”
    Decades ago, in UK, I attended a talk on romance writing, and afterwards made the remark that if I were to write romances they would have to incorporate some humour as I couldn’t take them totally seriously. I was jumped upon by the speaker who insisted that, no, it was a deadly serious genre and one could not approach it with any sense of humour. So I concentrated on other genres. And, because of that, I never read romances till very recently. What do I find in the best of them – humour!

    • June 6, 2015 at 8:38 am

      Humour keeps us all going. Love can be funny – sex certainly is, when you start analysing it!

    • June 6, 2015 at 8:59 am

      Yikes, Bronwyn, imagine life and love without a sense of humour?
      Would you venture into the world of romance writing, now…?
      The world needs more humour!


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