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Spotlight on Annie West & Revelations of a Secret Princess

Our Spotlight on Author is on Annie West. She has a new book out this month, Revelations of a Secret Princess. 

Australian Annie West loves writing passionate, intense romances and not just because it gives her a chance to ignore housework! She is a USA Today Bestselling author, published in 25 languages. Annie writes contemporary stories about charismatic heroes and strong heroines. She loves being in contact with readers as far apart as Brisbane, Bremen and Bermuda. When not writing and avoiding housework she can be found walking, enjoying good food and good company, travelling and reading.

Connect with Annie via:

       Website          Facebook

Or sign up for her occasional newsletter with book updates, behind the scenes information and giveaways:

1.    What kind of research do you do, and how long do you spend researching before beginning a book?
It depends on the story. Sometimes I’ve had to contact experts in a field to see if something I had in mind was feasible. I remember for one book searching on the internet, contacting friends of friends and also going through official consular channels to try to find information on the length of criminal sentences for specific crimes in Italy! My research has ranged across issues, language, customs, food, architecture, psychology and social issues.
Some research will happen before I start writing (maybe big picture stuff just to make sure the idea is viable) and a lot happens during the writing. For my current release ‘Revelations of a Secret Princess’ I did some wonderful location research – partly on the web, partly via travel books and especially through a visit. I wanted the hero to live in a castle in Switzerland and I could almost picture it, but not quite. Spending a little time in the Alps really helped cement the story in my head and it’s already providing inspiration for some future stories. Because I write shorter length romances there isn’t reams of description but what’s there is important to set the scene, plus I find if I can visualise a place, even down to the feel of it and the scents and sounds, it makes the writing more vibrant and that’s an enormous boost to me. When I’m writing I actually feel like I’m entering that particular world and location. People who get my reader newsletter or follow my Facebook page will have seen snippets of my adventures in the Swiss Alps and heard how that fed into ‘Revelations of a Secret Princess’.

2.    What scenes do you enjoy writing most?
Definitely the scenes where there’s an emotional issue. For instance a heroine who’s facing a dilemma or problem or is just plain scared. Or a scene where characters are in conflict – whether they shy away from it or face it head on. For me, romance is about the emotional story and that’s core to my writing. If I feel the character’s emotions, I know I’m on the right track.

3.    Can you give us an example of a very intense or difficult scene for you to write?
I remember writing my second book for Harlequin, called ‘The Greek’s Convenient Mistress’. In that book the heroine had just lost her mother and in the beginning of the story was still grief stricken. I knew I could write the story but what I hadn’t realised was that, in giving flesh to her grief, I had to delve into my own experience of losing a loved one. Even though that event was many years ago, when I wrote the book I felt that emotion again as if it were fresh and new. It was a taxing experience, but I suspect if I hadn’t done that, my heroine’s story would have been flat and uninteresting.
On a brighter note, in my current book, Caro has only just found her long lost child, having missed out on several years of her life. There’s a scene where she saves her daughter from an accident and for the first time, gets to cuddle her little girl in her arms. This wasn’t difficult to write, but was another incredibly intense, emotional experience. Here’s a taste of it:
Seeing Ariane’s tears spill, Caro found the energy to sit up, curling her legs under her and pulling Ariane to her. Her daughter burrowed close, her arms creeping around Caro’s neck. Caro had never experienced anything like the burst of glorious happiness that exploded inside her.
This. This is what she’d missed all these years.
For so long Caro had been tempted to fantasise that her child hadn’t been stillborn. But the fantasy was too dangerous and she’d forced herself to put it aside and face reality. Then, discovering Ariane was alive, Caro had been so focused on tracking her down that she hadn’t allowed herself to imagine this moment. It had seemed like tempting fate into stealing away her daughter again.
She rocked Ariane, breathing in the scent of snow, pine trees and little girl. It was a perfume she’d remember for the rest of her days.

4.    What’s the worst thing about being a full-time writer?
Definitely the sedentary lifestyle. I have to make a real effort to get up and out, making sure I exercise. Long hours working at a computer aren’t good for the body. And the nearness to the kitchen is a test of my resolve not to snack. J

5.    What’s the best thing about being a full-time writer?
Hearing from readers who loved a book. Or who say a story helped them when then were having a rough time. Or who ‘got’ my characters and rejoiced in them! To have someone else, maybe even on the other side of the world, connect with the people who live in my head, is amazing.
The other bonuses are not needing to dress up for work and the thrill of seeing my books on sale.

Revelations of a Secret Princess

A princess in disguise…

To find her precious daughter, stolen from her at birth, Princess Carolina will do anything. Including masquerading as a nanny! Jake Maynard, her daughter’s uncle, is all that’s standing in the way of the reunion Caro has yearned for. If only her body got the message he’s the enemy…

Caro knows this powerful billionaire won’t give up the only family he has left. Yet after years of emotional numbness, Jake is reawakening her! He shows Caro a life filled with passion, not protocol, but what will happen when Jake discovers her true identity?

Buy this book on:

Amazon Kindle                     Amazon Paperback

Amazon Aust                        Amazon UK


  1. Sounds like a great book. Good to know more about Annie. Good luck with the new book! Hugs, Valerie

    1. Thanks, Valerie! I'm glad you like the sound of it. I appreciate the good wishes. :)

  2. Good interview with Annie and her book sounds good.

    1. Hi Christine. I'm glad you liked the interview!

  3. Great interview and sounds like a fascinating read.

    'Lo, Nas:)

    1. Sandra, that's what I like to hear - 'fascinating'. :) Thanks.

  4. Uh-huh. I'm beginning to see the error of my ways... Yeah, I've visited some of the locations in my books, too, but they take place in my old hometown in Maryland. Such a dummy... it would've been smarter to place them someplace more exotic. (Wait! Who am I kidding? "More" exotic? More? HA! Nothing exotic about my old stomping grounds. Nothing exotic at all...)

    Nice interview, ladies, and this sounds like a super book. Good luck with it!

    1. Susan, some of my stories are set in places near where I live (though not many, I admit). Maryland is exotic to me - it's all in the perspective, isn't it?

  5. I have never read any of her book. Very good interview :)

  6. I'm pleased you think so, Natalia! :)

  7. I agree- readers are the very best part of writing.

  8. congratulation for publication...

    Thank you for a nice summary of books

  9. You always have such good books on your blog, Nas.

  10. Hi, I loved this post, I've been most interesting.
    I loved your post, I did not know your blog, do you want to follow us? You already tell me. Cheers

  11. Hi ;) nice to see this site. I have own site becouse I live writting about everyrging but I can not write a books. I do not have well style. I like writting . This books are intresting

  12. You did a great research about the product and really loved reading it. I must say I’ve no idea about this post before and not even heard that word. While i’m writing this i am using buffer and hoot suite to monitor my social media’s. I’m thinking to try to will share my feedback after trying it.

  13. agree - sedentary writer’s life is not good on the aging body!
    but also agree when someone gets our characters or praises the story - the big butt is all worth it! (still trying to get out of the chair and exercise more tho! =D
    congrats to Annie!

    and thanks for stopping by my Beast World campaign!
    Tara Tyler Talks

  14. Lovely ideas and I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this article and I am hoping the same best work from you in the same best work from you in the future as well.

  15. Doing research can be so much fun and so interesting. Great to hear from Annie. Wishing her all the best! :)

  16. wahhhh such a great interview!!!

  17. it's nice to read this interview :)


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