Tell us about your latest novel in 15 words or less.
Cider, sunshine, love and sizzling secrets. It’s all happening at The Dog & Duck this summer!
What inspired you to write Summer at the Dog & Duck?
It’s the second in the series of books base around a cosy fictional pub called The Dog and Duck set in the idyllic English village of Little Leyton. My family are from the East End of London and the local pub was always at the heart of the community. I’d always been fascinated by the different characters who came together at the pub and wanted to tell some of their stories.
Where do you do most of your writing?
Curled up on my sofa, overlooking the garden, with my dog, Amber, at my side.
This is always such a difficult question because there have been so many I’ve loved, but I always come back to The Country Girls by Edna O’Brien. It’s a beautifully written coming of age story set in rural Ireland.
Which part of Summer at the Dog & Duck did you enjoy writing the most?
In this book, Max’s younger sister, Katie turns up in the village, full of angst and attitude. I adored writing her scenes because although she’s clearly troubled, she’s gutsy, funny and has a huge heart.
Who is your favourite literary heroine?
Bridget Jones! Just hearing her name makes me smile. She is so funny, down-to-earth and, for a whole generation of women, very relatable.
Do you have any tips for readers who are looking to become published writers?
Join a writing group where you can meet like-minded people. Writing can be such a lonely business, especially when you’re starting out, that you need to find others who will encourage and support you during the bad times. I joined a creative writing class and the people I met there gave me the confidence to take my writing seriously. There are so many great online groups too and societies such as the Romantic Novelist’s Association, which I belong to.
Are you working on anything else at the moment and if so, can you tell us?
I’m currently writing the third in the Dog and Duck series. It’s still early days, buts it’s always very exciting to return to the characters to see what they’re up to. All I can say at the moment is that it’s going to be a very busy time for Ellie at The Dog and Duck.
To find out more about Jill Steeples, you can follow her on Twitter, via Facebook, or visit her website. Jill's previous novel, Winter at the Dog & Duck, is available now.
Summer at the Dog & Duck
Ellie Browne has found happiness running The Dog and Duck pub in the idyllic village of Little Leyton, and her blossoming romance with tall, handsome property developer, Max Golding, is going swimmingly. With her new best friend, Digby, the black Labrador at her side, life just couldn't be sweeter.
But their peace is shattered when Max's younger sister, Katy, turns up unannounced with a whole heap of attitude. And Max's loyalties are stretched further when his glamorous ex, Sasha, re-appears with her own burgeoning secret.
With the master of the manor preoccupied with the demands of his 'other women', Ellie's forced to consider if she has any role to play in Max's life or in the village of Little Leyton.
Can Ellie get her life and relationship back on track in time for the summer charity ball at Braithwaite Manor?