Guest author – Rachel Brimble.

Books by Rachel Brimble

It’s my great pleasure to introduce today’s guest author, Rachel Brimble.

Rachel lives in a small town near Bath, England. She is the author of 29 novels including the Ladies of Carson Street trilogy, the Shop Girl series (Aria Fiction) and the Templeton Cove Stories (Harlequin). Her latest novel, Victoria & Violet is the first book in her new Royal Maids series with the Wild Rose Press and released 17th October 2022.

Rachel is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association as well as the Historical Novel Society and has thousands of social media followers all over the world.


Inspiration – settings/characters/plots…

The most common question authors get asked by readers and interviewers is how or where we find inspiration for our stories.

The simple answer is…Inspiration is everywhere! Snippets of conversation, news articles, TV programmes and movies, your experiences/others experiences, places, history. I could go on, so how about I talk about one aspect at a time??


Setting is where the majority of my stories begin to take shape in my imagination. I love visiting modern and historical places, looking for new story ideas. I’m lucky enough to live in one of the most beautiful parts of the UK. Wiltshire is rich with history, phenomenal countryside and beautiful villages. I am also lucky enough to live just a short thirty minute drive from the famous Georgian city of Bath.

There are so many places that inspire me – from churches and cathedrals to the tiny hidden hamlets which hold an abundance of secrets in my imagination. I love wandering around Bath and contemplating the generations of people who have lived in such a wonderful city, the struggles they faced and conquered. I ask myself, “Who lived here?” “Who fought here?” “Who fell in love here?” “Who lost a loved one here?” And then, “Why?” “When?” “How?”


Many writers start their stories with a character or two, especially in romance, but the characters are rarely my starting point. Occasionally, I will hear a voice or a line of dialogue and have to explore who said it and why, but it is usually a case of me finding the characters to fit my story idea.

I trawl the Internet looking for pictures of famous actors or models who will be my hero and heroine (and villain if I have one!). Once a face catches my eye, I know I’ve found my character. Then I complete a full character sketch looking for how they will fit into the premise of my story. The sketches usually produce their goals, internal motivation and conflict. Then comes the plotting…


I try to make the hero and heroine’s goals conflict to provide solid obstacles for them to overcome during their journey and romance. The most important element of storytelling, and the aspect that runs throughout the book, is the characters’ internal conflict/their biggest fear or pain point. Whatever is difficult for the characters to get past is usually what is holding them back from reaching their full potential and/or happy ever after. Everything revolves around finding a way for these characters to grow and change.

So, there you have it! That is a whistle-stop tour of story inspiration.

In my latest novel, Victoria & Violet, I have included real characters and events so certain aspects of the story were already written in history, but it is really the romance between my hero and heroine, Violet and James that makes up the crux of the novel. These two were entirely drawn from my imagination and were an absolute joy to write.

I hope you enjoy reading the book as much as I enjoyed writing it!

Rachel x

Blurb & buy link for Victoria & Violet:

It should be a dream come true to serve the Queen of England…

When Violet Parker is told she will be Queen Victoria’s personal housemaid, she cannot believe her good fortune. She finally has the chance to escape her overbearing mother, a servant to the Duchess of Kent.

Violet hopes to explore who she is and what the world has to offer without her

mother’s schemes overshadowing her every thought and action.

Then she meets James Greene, assistant to the queen’s chief political adviser, Lord Melbourne. From entirely different backgrounds and social class, Violet and James should have neither need nor desire to speak to one another, yet through their service, their paths cross and their lives merge—as do their feelings.

Only Victoria’s court is not always the place for romance, but rather secrets, scandals, and conspiracies…


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