Thursday, July 2, 2015

Guest Post by Lucy Branch - My Writing Process!

I'm pretty time poor so like many women I have to multi-task.  I’d never get as much writing done as I do – if I didn’t  visualise out my story as clearly as possible before I sat down to write it. During my day, there’s quite a lot of jobs that take up minimal brain power but use up precious time like travelling, hanging out laundry even brushing my teeth.  I always play with a scene in that time – thinking along the plot.  Often, I don't have a pen on me when I do this thinking and so I have to run over it several times in my mind so I don't forget a juicy detail.

I seldom get to write until the evening - It's my only spare time. After work has finished and my kids are in bed around 7:30pm, I go down to make myself a cup of tea. I never let myself sit down between making tea and getting upstairs to my little study in the loft. If I do – I never get up again and no writing gets done.  When I get to my desk, I start to write out what’s been playing out in my head that day by hand.  Usually, it's become so familiar it writes out quickly. I then use voice activated software to put the bulk of it onto the computer before editing. I’m very undisciplined - for me, editing is always a slow and torturous process and I usually leave it until I have nearly a full book to work on.  I love the buzz I get from writing and I need the evidence of a nearly finished book to push me to face that last hurdle. I look forward to writing all day. I love being in that other world - it's addictive and as close to childhood make-believe as adult life can be.

An enchanting patineur finds herself drawn into a conspiracy of magical realism, unchecked greed and heated passion in this stunning debut about Italy and alchemy. 

Abigail Argent stands out. Some people notice that she always wears gloves and shudder when they know why. Those who know her best observe in wonder her remarkable ability in the coloring of metal. On the brink of finishing her chemistry degree, Abigail chances upon a book that reveals a link between her own art and that of her favorite childhood fairytale: the changing of lead into gold. Delighted with her find, and reveling in the news that she has been offered a high profile restoration job in Venice, Abigail is finally on the cusp of adventure, free to explore the world and all its riches. But Abigail’s specialist talents do not go unnoticed. A dangerous and powerful organization are watching her closely, convinced that she alone holds the key to an ancient alchemist’s secret.
Through her work in Venice, Abigail’s skills attract the attention of a notable sculptor who entices her to work for him in Florence. Drawn like a magnet to this iconic city of culture, Abigail continues to uncover more about the history of alchemy and develop her artistry while making new friends. Vibrant model Therese and handsome new lover David breathe new life into Abigail’s once sheltered heart. As the weeks pass, Therese, David and Abigail’s new circle of friends will become inextricably linked to her own destiny, drawn directly into the path of the sinister forces who are stealthily closing in, threatening Abigail’s life. To save herself, Abigail is forced to call upon everything she knows - but what she discovers about herself is much darker than she could ever have expected.
A Rarer Gift Than Gold is an accomplished first novel, rooted in an authenticity derived from author Lucy Branch’s professional insight. An acclaimed specialist in sculptural and architectural restoration, working on high-profile projects including Nelson’s Column, Cleopatras Needle, Eros, St Paul's Cathedral, The British Library and Selfridges, Branch brings the mythology of alchemy vividly to life. Abigail’s story is played out against a carefully observed background of Italian culture and architecture, drawing romance and mystery into her passage through the streets of Florence. Branch was inspired by an incident in which she and a close friend were ominously warned off the materials they were studying by a stranger during a research trip to Italy to explore the works of Galileo. A Rarer Gift Than Gold will captivate fans of Kate Mosse’s Languedoc Trilogy and is set to fascinate, enlighten and leave readers guessing until the very last page.

About the author: Lucy Branch is a director of her family’s firm Antiques Bronze Ltd, one of the UK’s leading conservation and restoration companies. She has a degree in History of Art with Material Studies and a Masters from The Royal College of Art and the Victoria & Albert Museum. Branch is an accredited member of the Institute of Conservation. Lucy lives with her husband and their three children in North London. The first in the The Gold Gift trilogy, A Rarer Gift Than Gold by Lucy Branch (published by Clink Street Publishing RRP $9.99 paperback, RRP $2.99 ebook) is available to buy online from March 20th from retailers including and can be ordered from all good bookstores. For more information, please visit 

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