Home is where the heart is for ro­man­tic author

Macclesfield Express - - YOUR VIEWS - STE­FAN JAJECZNYK

THE author of a new Mills & Boon novel has used her adopted home­town as in­spi­ra­tion for it’s me­dieval set­ting.

Claire Lack­ford, who writes un­der the pseu­do­nym Elisabeth Hobbes, has set her lat­est his­tor­i­cal-ro­mance novel in a me­dieval, fic­tion­alised ver­sion of Mac­cles­field.

Her new book, ‘Re­deem­ing the Rogue Knight’, is her fifth for pub­lisher Har­lequin UK, who own the Mills & Boon ti­tle - it is the sec­ond book to be set in an his­toric Mac­cles­field.

The 42-year-old teacher and author said: “I have lived in Mac­cles­field for the past eigh­teen years af­ter end­ing up here ac­ci­den­tally – though not in such a dra­matic fashion as my hero – so this area was the ob­vi­ous choice for him to turn up in.

“I just think that it’s such a lovely area - I of­ten travel around to places like Mac­cles­field For­est and love the idea of my char­ac­ters rid­ing around the area on horse­back.

“At one point they visit the St Barn­abas fair, which is ob­vi­ously now the Barn­aby fair, which I go to and think is great - I do think we should have joust­ing at the real fair though!”

As well as cel­e­brat­ing the town, Claire, who is orig­i­nally from York, has given ap­pre­ci­a­tion to some of Mac­cles­field’s well-known busi­nesses.

She said, “I wanted my hero­ine to own an inn and be a brewer to pay trib­ute to the great lo­cal in­de­pen­dent brew­eries such as Bolling­ton Brew­ery and Red Wil­low - whose prod­ucts I en­joy on a reg­u­lar ba­sis.”

Claire, who works in Holmes Chapel, has been writ­ing for Mills & Boon since 2013, when she came third in their an­nual world-wide writ­ing com­pe­ti­tion.

She said: “I’d al­ways writ­ten sto­ries since I was lit­tle, but at the time of the com­pe­ti­tion my hus­band was work­ing away and I was alone with the kids.

“I ini­tially thought it would be easy to write for Mills & Boon, but when I en­tered I re­alised it wasn’t so. The qual­ity con­trol is re­ally tight, but my ed­i­tors are re­ally good - they do fo­cus on his­tor­i­cal ac­cu­racy as well as the story.”

Claire, who reg­u­larly writes in Mac­cles­field Li­brary, is de­lighted with the re­sponse her book has re­ceived on Ama­zon.

She said: “I’m re­ally pleased with the way peo­ple have re­sponded - I still some­times get ‘im­pos­tor syn­drome’ - where some­one will tell me stop, but no one has yet!”

Claire hopes to fo­cus more time on writ­ing, with an­other book due out shortly .

Mac­cles­field author Claire Lack­ford

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