Ally Blake Romance Author - Blog

Latest news from Australian romance author Ally Blake, writer of fun, fresh flirty romance novels.

Saturday 25 June 2011

fun stuff about "millionaire dad's sos"

Here are some fun facts about my current North America release, MILLIONAIRE DAD'S SOS.

Hero inspiration: Reynaldo Gianecchini. Okay, so I found another excuse to post this guy's pic. but come on, did I really need one?

Working Title

Song: "SUDDENLY I SEE" by KC Tunstall

The story that almost never was: I'd originally tried to give Meg a Harlequin Presents story in which she hooked up with her brother's friend Hamish, an architect who appears briefly in DATING THE REBEL TYCOON. I rewrote the opening chapter so many times I eventually gave up and wrote Dylan and Wynnie's story in GETTING RED-HOT WITH THE ROGUE for Harlequin Presents instead and it was a muuuuch better fit! Meg just had to wait a little longer for her guy, and I reckon he was worth it.

Dedication: This was for my second daughter who grew in my tummy as I wrote the book!

eBook (UK)

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Monday 20 June 2011

"millionaire dad's SOS" ~ the guy

Reynaldo Gianecchini as my Zach Jones. Need I say more? I'll let my heroine Meg say more instead ;).

'Hot guy at six o’clock. He’s been staring at you for the past five minutes.’

‘Not news, hon,’ Rylie said, touching the ground with her palms and causally glancing between her legs before letting out a long slow, ‘I take that back. This one is big news.’

Meg rolled her eyes. ‘I’m not falling for that again.’

‘Your loss,’ Rylie said.

A husky note in her best friend’s voice caught Meg’s attention. ‘Fine. Where?’

‘Over your right shoulder,’ Tabitha said. ‘Faded t-shirt, knee-length cargo shorts, sneakers that have pounded some miles, cap he ought to have thrown away a looong time ago...’

Rylie laughed, then gave Meg’s leg a tug so her knee collapsed turning her whether she wanted to or not.

Meg didn’t even get the chance to ask Rylie what was so funny. She didn’t need to. There was no way any woman under the age of a hundred and twenty was going to miss the man leaning against the trunk of one of the massive ghost gums lining the resort’s elegant driveway.

He was tall. Impressively so. Broad as any man she’d ever met. His chin was unshaven, the dark curls beneath his cap overlong. With the colour of a man who’d spent half a lifetime in the sun and the muscles of a man who hadn’t done so standing still, he looked like he’d stepped out of a Nautica ad.

She tucked a curl behind her ear and casually bent down to tug at her ankle socks, not needing to look at the guy to remember exactly what she’d seen. Her hands shook ever so slightly.

He was the very dictionary definition of rugged sex-appeal. For a girl from the right side of the tracks, a girl who was a magnet for stiff, sharp, striving suits, a girl whose planner had become so full of late she had to diarise time to wash her hair much less anything more intimately enjoyable, he was a revelation.

eBook (UK)

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Saturday 18 June 2011

gorgeous review!

Just found this fabulous review for my THE WEDDING DATE. (Out in North America as THE ROGUE WEDDING GUEST).

Here's a snippet of the gorgeousness:

"The story and characters are modern and written with wit and sass, sparkling dialogue and great chemistry. This is a great book that had me laughing out loud and left with that all important warm fuzzy feeling!"

Isn't that just heaven??? Read the full review here.

Read more
Buy the book

Buy the eBook

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Wednesday 15 June 2011

"millionaire dad's SOS" ~ the girls

Here's a picture I used for heroine inspiration Meg Kelly, the heroine from MILLIONAIRE DAD'S SOS. Love the expression, love the dress, love the girl! Mila Kunis has an earthy sexiness and a vulnerability that suited Meg to the ground.

Meg's BFFs Rylie and Tabitha played a massive part in the story as well. Tabitha plays a role in DATING THE REBEL TYCOON and Rylie in GETTING RED-HOT WITH THE ROGUE.

I have a story in mind for Rylie I hope I get the chance to write one day, while I get the feeling that Tabitha - sweet soul that she is might have to live her ultimate romance outside the pages of a book ;).

Do you like reading about characters who've appeared in your favourite author's other books?

eBook (UK)

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Monday 13 June 2011

pillow talk ~ collaging

Danielle asked: What about collaging? So here's what I've found:

Collaging for writers is pretty much just what it sounds like - get a bunch of magazines, a pair of scissors and some paste and pretend you're back in kindergarten! Only rather than sticking random stuff anywhere, find pictures that speak to you, that give you the same "feeling" the story you're writing gives you.

To me that's the most important thing. That a glance at the collage puts you in the exact right mood for that story. Which is why the right collage can help you no end and the wrong collage can be a disaster!

I spent a long time writing a book about Damien and Monica before I realised it just wasn't working. The book fit the collage to perfection - all dark, and red, and moody and sexy. I loved the collage, and hated the book. It just wasn't me. I made a radical decision to rewrite using a completely different heroine - Chelsea - and it fell together like nothing else I've ever written. Not so much dark, red, and moody but bright, yellow and real. From that near disaster my most popular book THE MAGNATE'S INDECENT PROPOSAL was born. (You can buy the eBook here.)

Collages are also great for giving you nuggets of inspiration. This was my collage for MILLIONAIRE TO THE RESCUE. The heroine Brooke is a yummy mummy and her casual loveliness came from the relaxed images I stuck here. Danny's refined elegance came from the picture to the left. As did his dog ;). From these random pictures that spoke to me I also got Danny's preferred nightcap and much of his character growth in the book from the "No more Mr Nice Guy!" quip. This collage worked great for this book.

I guess the most important thing is to take your inspiration wherever you can find it. If it doesn't work for you then get the thing out of your sight!

Anything else you'd like to know, ask away. Though if its the answer to life, the universe and everything I'm afraid Douglas Adams got there first!

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Sunday 12 June 2011

my heroine

Meet Caitlyn. She’s the heroine in the book I’m writing right now.

This picture of Isla Fisher sums her up perfectly. Gorgeous, groomed, sassy and super flirty. Aussie Isla has just the right mix of chutzpah and vulnerability to remind me of Caitlyn.

As a visual writer when I can find just the right two pictures to remind me of my hero and heroine it makes my job so much easier. One look at these two together on the screen and I get goosebumps. (Check out my last post to see the gorgeous guy she gets to fall in love with!)

Loving this book to bits!

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Friday 10 June 2011

my hero

I give you Karl Urban.

Okay, so really I'm just lending you to him for a small moment as he's MINE!

seen him in a few movies, most memorably as Bones in the latest Star Trek movie. But it was as the bad guy CIA operative hunting down Bruce Willis in RED that he blew me away. All dark, and slick, and talented, and focused in his dark suits. Humona humona.

So he is my inspiration for my current hero in ADDICTED TO LOVE. The way he looks out at me from under his brows with that slight smile on his face. Perfection, right?

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Wednesday 8 June 2011


I’m a sucker for a movie tie in and always like to read the book first. I’ve picked up some great books that way. In Her Shoes being one. Great book. Awesome film. I even took an American Literature class at uni simply because I wanted to read Age of Innocence before I saw the film! I was young ;).

Something Borrowed by Emily Giffin is my latest.

It took me a while to get into this one as its very narrative/back story heavy at the beginning and I was itching for some real live human interaction between the characters.

But now the story has kicked into gear I’m enjoying it thoroughly. The heroine’s an uptight good girl who’s done a very bad thing with her best friend’s fiancé, but even with those two strikes against her, I want her to come out okay in the end! And I’m intrigued as to whether the guy whose predominant in her life (her best friend’s fiancé who's actually quite likeable even while being so bad!) will be the hero in the end or if someone in the wings will stand up and be counted. But to me the most important part is the issue of a toxic friendship. How many of us have been there?

If a book has me thinking about when I can next find time to read it and I count that as a ripper read. Hope it continues to be just as gripping!

Buy the book ~ Emily Giffin's website


Monday 6 June 2011

pillow talk ~ sexy or sweet?

Danielle was wondering whether I preferredd writing sexy or sweet. She - good girl that she is - loves reading them both. And you know what? I do too! As for writing them I prefer...


When I first started writing my style, voice and stories were just built for "sweet" romance, otherwise known as Cherish in the UK, and Harlequin Romance in North America. I write quite nice earnest heroines, and warm, strong, protective heroes. THE WEDDING WISH was bought at a time when that line was branching out into new lighter, funnier territory brimming with secondary characters which lucky for me was exactly how I write. (It was re-released in the UK earlier this year - grab a copy here)

Branching out into the sexier stuff was something I was never sure I could do - or even wanted to do considering how blissfully happy I was in the Romance line - until one day a story demanded to be written. I had time, I had an idea that wouldn't say no so I started writing to see what would happen. I wrote half a book in a week. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, 25,000 words in one week. This was pre-children mind you! GETTING DOWN TO BUSINESS was my first sexier book and it was my 11th overall. (It was also rereleased in the UK earlier this year - grab a copy here!)

So I really do love writing both. And having the chance to stretch my writing muscles in slightly different directions I believe makes my writing stronger as a whole. I only hope my readers enjoy both as much as I love writing them!

More questions? Ask away! Or check back on previous Pillow Talk posts here.

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Saturday 4 June 2011

when it’s okay to just give in

Six weeks ago I waved the white flag and surrendered, giving up on a book I’d been slaving over for months.

I realized I’d spent a month rewriting the first chapter over and over again in an effort to find make it sparkly, delicious, melt in the mouth writing. Instead, like over-worked scone dough, the story had become hard, heavy, something you’d want to sink your teeth into about as much as a rock. The characters were lethargic. The plot numbing. I was sinking fast.

In an effort to find my way back, I let myself spend an entire precious writing session on a new idea instead. And you know what? It flowed from my fingertips like warm honey. Such light, such brightness, such fun funny characters who I just adored.

And that was that. Decision made. 80% of a whole book out the window. 50,000 words of a new unknown story in front of me. Eek!

Best decision I could have made. I’m loooving the new story into which I have thrown myself. I’ve written huge word counts every day and it feels like the cleanest narrative I’ve ever written. I can’t wait to get out and write every time I get the chance. Right now my job is a constant pleasure.

The moral of the tale – writing can be hard work. A slog. A pain in the ass. Pushing through the hard parts can make for strong books. But if it just ain’t working, sometimes it is okay to pack it in! Because that fresh new idea bubbling and sizzling and dancing in the corner of your mind may just give you the excitement and inspiration you need to write something you really love. The key is being honest about the difference.

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Friday 3 June 2011

"millionaire dad's SOS" hits stateside!

My latest Harlequin Romance MILLIONAIRE DAD'S SOS is out now across North America!

How delicious is this cover? I just adore it. So dreamy and romantic. And perfection when it comes to the tropical rainforest retreat setting.

This is the third and final Kelly family book all about Meg Kelly who bobbed up in Cameron's story DATING THE REBEL TYCOON, and Dylan's tale GETTING RED-HOT WITH THE ROGUE.

Meg's man is Zach Jones, a truly delicious specimen I very much enjoyed visiting daily while I wrote the book. In fact I think I'll have to do a post of pictures just of him. He's that gorgeous!

Grab your copy online at eHarlequin today!

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Thursday 2 June 2011

famly portrait

This is how my 2 year old went forth when asked to create her Mummy and Daddy in felt.

No, my husband is not a lumberjack. We don't own a cat. And I can only hope I'm the one in the dress!


Wednesday 1 June 2011

I'm reading... bossypants

LinkBOSSYPANTS by Tina Fey.

I went hunting the NYT Bestseller list a couple of weeks back,
as I was on the lookout for something new and different to read. There I discovered that the fabulous Tina Fey had an autobiography out! Love the chick, so ordered my copy ASAP.

So far its been less funny ha-ha than I expected, b
ut I can feel it warming up. Its a really honest account of what made her who she is. I expect as a comedian that comes with the territory. Not sure I could be that gutsy! I'd rather everyone think I'm ten kilos lighter and ten years younger than I really am ;).

Enjoying it muchly so far, can't wait to see what happens next!

30 Rock website
Buy the book