Great Expectations

Lizzie Lamb

When I was writing Tall, Dark and Kilted I wanted to make
brooding hero Ruairi Urquhart, revise his opinion of heroine Fliss Bagshawe. I
hit upon having Fliss deliver a baby during a storm which had prevented the local
doctor from getting through. However, never having given birth, I wondered
where I could gain the necessary expertise to write a convincing scene? Cue
fellow New Romantic 4 and mother of five, June Kearns.

Me: June, do you think one needs to
have a baby in order to write convincingly about giving birth?
June: I’d say, yes. But, seeing as your
deadline is approaching and gestation takes nine months, you’re cutting it a
bit fine . . .
Me (muttering) At least she didn’t
mention my age.
June: Added to which, neither biology
nor anno domini are on your side. So you’re going to have to rely in t’internet,
or consult an experienced mother. (coughs to draw attention back to herself)
Me: Like you.
June: Ex -actly. Fire away.
Me: Does it hurt?
June: On a scale of one to five?
Me: Yes.
June: Imagine trying to push a turkey
through your nostril, double the pain and you get the idea.  
Me: (paling) What equipment should my
heroine gather together – towels, hot water?
June (briskly) : Rubber sheet, blanket, disposable gloves, scissors (sterilised
in a saucepan of water) string – ditto – hand washing equipment, disposable
gloves, apron, electric kettles for boiling more water, cotton wool, sanitary
towels, black bin liners, a pillow covered with an old towel. Oh, and – a
bottle of whisky and several glasses. 

Me: (incredulously) Is it safe to give
the mother whisky so soon after giving birth?
June: The whisky’s for your heroine. She’s
going to need it, take it from me, there’s the afterbirth to deal with and . .
. Hey, where are you going. I haven’t finished giving you all the gory

Me: To think about a new plot line!
Maybe a missing dog will work . . .

In the end, the scene was written using my imagination and information
I culled from the internet. I really
loved writing that scene because it shows my hero’s caring side and my
heroine’s steadfastness.  

But the
story doesn’t end there.

I received a lovely email from a retired
midwife who’d read Tall Dark and Kilted and wanted to know where I’d undertaken
my midwifery training. Apparently, she was impressed that my heroine knew not
to cut the umbilical cord until it had stopped pulsing (roughly about 10 mins
after birth) Sadly, I had to dissolution her but we have since become Facebook


Tall, Dark and Kilted

Fliss Bagshawe longs for a passport out of Pimlico where
she works as a holistic therapist. After attending a party in Notting Hill she
loses her job and with it the dream of being her own boss. 

She’s offered the
chance to take over a failing therapy centre, but there’s a catch. The centre
lies five hundred miles north in Wester Ross, Scotland. 

Fliss’s romantic view
of the highlands populated by Men in Kilts is shattered when she has an upclose
and personal encounter with the Laird of Kinloch Mara, Ruairi Urquhart. 

determined to pull the plug on the business, bring his eccentric family to heel
and eject undesirables from his estate – starting with Fliss. 

Facing the dole
queue once more Fliss resolves to make sexy, infuriating Ruairi revise his
unflattering opinion of her, turn the therapy centre around and sort out his
dysfunctional family.  Can Fliss tame the
Monarch of the Glen and find the happiness she deserves?

With Scottish, Irish, and Brazilian blood in her veins,
it’s hardly surprising that Lizzie Lamb is a writer. She even wrote extra
scenes for the films she watched as a child and acted out in the playground
with her friends. She is shamed to admit that she kept all the good lines for
herself. Luckily, she saves them for her readers these days.

Lizzie’s love of writing went on hold while she pursued a
successful teaching career, finishing up as a Deputy Head teacher of a large
primary school. Since deciding to leave the profession to realise her dream of
becoming a published novelist, Lizzie hasn’t looked back. She wrote Tall, Dark
and Kilted – which echoes her love of her homeland in every page, not to
mention heroes in kilts – and published it.

Lizzie loves
the quick fire interchange between the hero and heroine – like in old black and
white Hollywood movies – and hope this comes over in her writing. For her
second novel: Boot Camp Bride (due out this autumn) she’s had enormous fun
researching VW camper vans, the Norfolk Marshes and the world of journalism.
Not to mention falling in love with delicious hero – Rafael Ffinch.

9 thoughts on “Great Expectations

  1. I absolutely loved this scene in your book Lizzie, riveting and brilliantly written. The wise-cracking quick-fire dialogue in your writing always makes me laugh out loud, so I am really looking forward to Boot Camp Bride and what goes on in that Camper Van!!!


  2. Great post! Love the exchanges with June. I've read Tall Dark and Kilted and this particular scene stood out to me for exactly the reasons listed by Lizzie above. It was so realistic and really united hero and heroine in said delicate task ahead of them. It's a fab read, with a great cast of characters. I'm so looking forward to reading Boot Camp Bride 🙂 x


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