Despite popular belief, I don’t just sit around all day playing with the cats and cooking my husband dinner (I limit that to only 10 hours of the day). I put out a bit of a teaser last week saying I was cutting down on magazine work to focus on writing books, but (in hopes of piquing curiosity) I did not say which books. Wait, I assume you care. Of course you do!!

I have many novels underway, some even finished in very rough form, but something always steered me away from them. Late last year, I settled on a project I fell in love with. Set in Edwardian times, three sisters marry into English nobility, WWI comes and brings troubles, the manor house becomes a hospital. All was going great, pages were churning out like crazy.

Then I made the mistake of watching Downton Abbey since I’d heard it was set in that same period (love research when it comes in video form).

Yeah, I was cursing. My story was a bit different but WAY too many similarities popped up for people not to think I simply copied the Downton Abbey storyline. What can I say, Julian Fellowes and I are great minds that think alike.

Sigh, so about 100 pages into the novel, I left it. Perhaps to revisit another day when the world forgets about Downton Abbey – yeah right.

Despite many ideas bursting through my brain cells for new novels, I decided to go back to the pile of novels I already had going. I started re-reading one I began last year and then abandoned. I’d already completed about 150 pages and, after re-reading them, couldn’t fathom why I abandoned it.Seriously, I do impress myself sometimes.

So, I read through my notes again, refreshed myself on the research and have now added another 50 pages or so with hopes of finishing the rough draft by April.

So what’s the book? Well, It’s set in Ancient Rome and tells the story of Julia Domna – wife of Septimius Severus and mother of Caracalla. She’s one power hungry lady who will do anything for her son. Her marriage to Severus was arranged because he believed she would be the good luck charm that would make him emperor. In my story she is forced to abandon her true love who continues to play a part in her life. I take Julia’s story from the time she marries Severus to his journey to become emperor to plot’s against her to her son’s struggle to rule the empire. It’s great fun!