Today I’m delighted to be able to reveal the title and cover of my first ever Christmas Novelette! A novelette is shorter than a novella (which is shorter than a novel), but longer than a short story. The Silence of Juliet Mann is around 12,500 words, and will be sent out free to mailing list subscribers at the beginning of December. If you haven’t signed up yet here is the link – my mailing list is not the same as the blog subscription, it’s the means by which I keep readers informed of new releases and special promotions. So sign up now to get your copy of …

SJM cover

“There can’t be many things worse than not being able to say your own name.”

Juliet Mann is about to get hitched at last. Her fiancé is gorgeous, her dress is stunning, her family are overjoyed … and perhaps more than a little relieved. But Juliet has a secret – a problem she’s tried to hide for far too long. Juliet’s moment has finally arrived, but when the time comes to say ‘I do’, Juliet can’t say anything at all.

Her parents are far from understanding – but they aren’t the only ones in denial. When Juliet discovers she’s messed up more than just her wedding day, she embarks on a mission to find a cure for the speech impediment that has blighted her life. But has she left it too late?

Full of heart-warming humour, unflinching and thought-provoking, The Silence of Juliet Mann follows one woman’s struggle to communicate “like a normal person”. From classroom embarrassments to adult humiliations, this romantic comedy guarantees you will never look at a stammer the same way again.

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What a beautiful cover! I am thrilled with it, and I think Chris Howard has excelled himself with this one. Here’s a bit of background for anyone who wants to know more about the story:

Regular blog readers will know that I used to stammer as a child and young adult. Of course this story is not remotely autobiographical (!) but it does draw heavily on my own experiences. It was a tough decision to write about stammering, as it certainly blighted my teenage and school years, and still affects my confidence now when reading out loud or talking in public. But I think it’s important to write about things that affect you – and other people – deeply, and I did find it very cathartic. And perhaps only someone who has stammered can write about it in a humorous way – there are painful moments in this story, but there are also moments that make me laugh out loud. Why are they funny? Because they are true – and the lengths people with any kind of problem will go to in order to avoid facing the consequences of that problem are often hilarious. But at the heart of this story is a romance plain and simple: a woman who loves a man but whose fears and anxieties prevent her from being happy, from being able to achieve her goal. This is a universal story, and I hope people can enjoy it on many levels.

The Silence of Juliet Mann: A Christmas Novelette will be available on Kindle in time for Christmas, but if you want your own e-copy for free next week, you know what you have to do 🙂

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