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Meet 2018 Golden Heart Finalist Scarlett Peckham

Today we’re starting back up with one of our favorite Ruby Traditions: inviting members of the new class of Golden Heart Finalists to join us here on the blog!

The Rubies first got together as 2009 Golden Heart Finalists, an experience which changed all of our lives for the better. And we love celebrating with each super-talented new group of finalists every spring!

This year, we even know the group’s name already…(Drum roll please!!):

The Persisters!!

As Finalist Cheryl Ford explains, “We chose Persisters because this sh*t’s hard, and we need writing sisters to rely on. We can persist in this industry better together than apart.”

I love it!!! I’m hoping other Persisters who stop by today will tell us more in the comments about their take on the meaning behind that fabulous name.

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Now on to our very first 2018 Golden Heart Finalist guest!!

Scarlett Peckham, who was also a Golden Heart® finalist last year with CONFESS, YOUR GRACE, is back as a TRIPLE Finalist this year, with all three books finaling in the Historical Category. Scarlett writes steamy historical romances with happy endings for alpha heroines.

Scarlett splits her time between London and Los Angeles and when not writing can be found drinking wine, arguing with her editorial assistant (read: cat), watching The Real Housewives, and spending far too much time on Twitter and Instagram. Her debut novel, now titled THE DUKE I TEMPTED, will be out July 31. (Take a gander at the lovely cover right here!!) Here’s a blurb for the soon-to-be-published book:

He’s controlled. Meticulous. Immaculate. No one would expect the proper Duke of Westmead to be a member of London’s most illicit secret club. Least of all: his future wife.

Having overcome financial ruin and redeemed his family name to become the most legendary investor in London, the Duke of Westmead needs to secure his holdings by producing an heir. Which means he must find a wife who won’t discover his secret craving to spend his nights on his knees – or make demands on his long scarred-over heart.

Poppy Cavendish is not that type of woman. An ambitious self-taught botanist designing the garden ballroom in which Westmead plans to woo a bride, Poppy has struggled against convention all her life to secure her hard-won independence. She wants the capital to expand her exotic nursery business – not a husband.

But there is something so compelling about Westmead, with his starchy bearing and impossibly kind eyes – that when an accidental scandal makes marriage to the duke the only means to save her nursery, Poppy worries she wants more than the title he is offering. The arrangement is meant to be just business. A greenhouse for an heir. But Poppy yearns to unravel her husband’s secrets – and to tempt the duke to risk his heart.

Meet 2017 Golden Heart Finalist Scarlett Peckham!!

Today we’re welcoming another Rebelle, Scarlett Peckham, 2017 Golden Heart Finalist in Historical Romance with her manuscript CONFESS, YOUR GRACE.

Scarlett Peckham came to romance as a child upon finding her grandmother hiding on a porch, giggling over a beat-up copy of Whitney, My Love. She quickly stole it, and has never looked back.

She studied English at Columbia University and built a career in public relations, but in her free time always returned to her earliest obsession: those delicious, big-hearted books you can never bear to put down. Her manuscript, Confess, Your Grace, is a 2017 Golden Heart® finalist in historical romance.

An American who has spent most of her adult life in Brooklyn, Scarlett now lives in London, along with her very nice husband and their very sleepy cat. Her hobbies include cooking, running, and watching The Real Housewives while consuming unadvisable amounts of white wine.

Here’s a blurb for CONFESS, YOUR GRACE:

Immaculate, ludicrously handsome, and blessed with impossibly kind eyes, no one would expect the Duke of Westmead to be a member of Georgian London’s most exclusive private whipping club. Least of all: the woman he intends to marry.

Having shed a painful past to become the most legendary investor in London Archer Stonewell, the Duke of Westmead now finds himself in urgent need of an heir. Which means he must search for that rarest of creatures: a wife who won’t question his nocturnal whereabouts, or make demands on his heart. Poppy Cavendish is not that type of woman. A fiercely ambitious nurserywoman hired to build Westmead a garden, she has no interest in auditioning for the role of his duchess. But when their shared obsession with business triggers an attraction that is decidedly unbusinesslike, the resulting scandal leads to something neither of them bargained for: a hasty marriage of convenience. As their thorny arrangement blossoms into unexpected passion, and Westmead’s rival threatens everything they’ve built, no secret – or heart – will remain safe for long. 

**Fans self fervently!!!** Oh, MY, that sounds exciting!! How come I can’t read that right now???

Scarlett’s here with us today to talk about about reading, and writing, romance novels “in the dark.” And not quite in the way you might think. I think this topic will resonate with a lot of us.

Take it away, Scarlett!!

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Allow me to begin with a confession. I started writing romance because I thought it would be easy.

I know. I know. I’ll sit here and wait while you roll your eyes and refrain from pelting me with an old dog-eared copy of Shanna.

Finaling for the Golden Heart — a milestone that took place five years after I decided to try my hand at this seemingly undemanding enterprise and nearly two years after I began to pursue it seriously — has brought into relief just how perfectly wrong I was.

And it has made me think about why I ever thought that this might be easy to begin with.

You see, my entire life, I have read romance novels. Hundreds, if not thousands, of romance novels. And almost always in the dark. In secret.

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