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Friday, October 12, 2018

What Makes My Heart Beat Faster by Louise Marley - Guest Post & Giveaway

About Louise Marley

Louise Marley writes murder mysteries and romantic comedies. She is lucky enough to live in a village where there is a famous library and TWO ruined castles. (Her husband still thinks they moved there by accident).

Her first published novel was Smoke Gets in Your Eyes, which was a finalist in Poolbeg’s ‘Write a Bestseller’ competition. She has also written articles for the Irish press and short stories for UK women’s magazines such as Take a Break and My Weekly.

Her latest novel is Trust Me I Lie.


Books by Louise Marley

What makes my heart beat faster 
Guest post by Louise Marley

I did smile when Anniek and Suze kindly asked me to write this feature. A post entitled ‘What Makes My Heart Beat Faster’ seemed very ironic because I’m currently trying to improve my fitness! I love being a writer but one huge drawback is that we spend a lot of time sitting at a desk. And when we do go out to meet up with friends, coffee and a large slice of cake is very tempting!

Fortunately, I adore exploring the beautiful Welsh countryside where I live. My favourite walks are around ruined castles and the gardens of stately homes, but I particularly love woodlands and forests because they look so fabulous at this time of year. While my husband is quite happy to clamber around the gothic remains of an ancient castle, he can’t quite understand my love of forests. “There’s nothing to see,” he grumbled once. “There’s plenty to see!” I told him. “Like what?” But my brain wasn’t working quickly enough and so my first answer was “Trees!” This made him fall about laughing before I could finish my sentence.

What I meant to have said is that I love walking through forests because, yes, they have trees – all different varieties of trees. And I love taking photos of the leaves and the way they look brighter and more vividly coloured in the sunlight. And then there are the darker, gloomier places, where everything is still and silent, and all those myths and stories you’ve heard about ghosts and creatures of the night start to seem as if they could be true. And the slightest noise, like the breaking of a twig, will make you nearly jump out of your skin!

Walking through the woods helps my writing too. I can think through my plot and if I’ve become stuck sometimes the solution will present itself like magic! But my absolute favourite thing is to unexpectedly stumble upon an old ruin. I came across a derelict corn mill in the woods outside a village called Hawarden. It would have been easy to miss but I caught a glimpse of a chimney from the path. It was covered in ivy but its distinctive square shape meant it was definitely not a tree! We scrambled down to explore and found the ruined mill, built in the 18th century but now reclaimed by nature, along with the enormous drive shafts, gears and grinding stones.

Another time, while walking through woodland on the island of Anglesey, I stumbled upon a ruined mansion called Baron Hill, which looked as though it had come straight out of Sleeping Beauty. Built in 1618, it was damaged by fire around the time of the Second World War and was left to become derelict. It is a very sad-looking place and, although there has been talk of restoring it, I feel it is far too gone to save it. I borrowed part of its history for my novel, Trust Me I Lie.

Milla, my poor heroine from Trust Me I Lie, also had to run for her life through a night-time forest, and a haunted forest features in my ghost story, Something Wicked. My woodland walks continue to surprise me and inspire me. And that’s why I love them – forests are so much more than trees!


One very lucky reader of With Love for Books will receive a flower notebook with a gel pen and two digital books of choice from Louise Marley’s backlist.

The winner will be notified by email and has 3 days to respond. All of our giveaways are international.


  1. Great guest post. I love forests and woodland walks too.

  2. I love the photos. I would love to explore places like that.

  3. great pics, love exploring wooded and forested areas - makes me feel I've been transported to the middle ages or before!!

  4. Those photos are marvellous, love the ruined mansion but what a shame it hasn't been restored however you would need very deep pockets to do that.

  5. I really enjoyed reading the guest post, thank you!

  6. These are great pictures. Thank you for sharing.

  7. Nice to meet you Louise, Looking forward to reading your books. Thank you

  8. The ruined castles would be my favourite walks too. Lovely pictures thank you.

  9. She certainly lives somewhere beautiful and full of inspiration.

  10. Awesome guest post, thank you for sharing!

  11. what beautiful places in the photos. I'd really like to visit