Monday, April 26, 2021

Where Your Treasure Is by M. C. Bunn (VBT, guest post, excerpt, and GIVEAWAY) GFT

It is my pleasure to share a guest post by author M.C. Bunn, who answers my question...



What was the most difficult thing to overcome on your path to becoming a published author and how did you conquer it?


MCB: Multiple difficulties face aspiring writers. Getting published is only one of them. My breakthrough was a combination of factors, the most important of which was finding the right reader.


I began to write Where Your Treasure Is in 2011 while I was teaching high school and helping my mother, so an immediate challenge was time management. I rose early and stayed up late. Because I wrote for pleasure, this wasn’t a chore. Nights when my husband worked, I rushed from my mother’s house to my manuscript, as eager for the next installment of Winifred and Court’s romance and adventures as I had been for episodes of Masterpiece Theatre or Mystery when I was a girl. It was only after I’d finished the draft and a few people read it that I realized it might have potential. The manuscript was far from being in shape, so I set it aside and began another book.


I also began investigating online writing journals, and was overwhelmed by the abundant advice. I continued writing—for six more years and several more books, only dipping into the swiftly-changing currents of publishing from time to time. On the one hand I wrote for myself, and on the other, tried to incorporate what I’d learned about genres and marketing without letting all of that derail what I wanted to express.


Almost no one knew I wrote, but a friend who did introduced me to a writer who agreed to read Treasure, which was by then on its third draft. After contacting many editors, I realized it was a long book for a first-time author. Could I cut it in half and make two books? In publishing’s early days, novels were often released in multiple volumes (think of Little Women), but I knew this wouldn’t work for Treasure’s plot. The editors hadn’t read my manuscript. They made their suggestion based on the page-by-page cost of reading and putting a long book through various editorial stages. They were trying to help me save money.


Cost is an issue all writers must consider. Many first-time authors with Big 5 publishers will have to finance and implement at least part of their publicity campaigns. Writers part ways with publishers and are sometimes dropped. Books may not sell enough copies to make it to the back lists and go out of print. Small and hybrid presses (such as Bellastoria), self-publishing—all these options require writers’ time and money. Publishing always has.


Two instances may provide comfort: Samuel Richardson and Jane Austen. Richardson, a master printer, self-published Clarissa (970,000 words; two volumes) in 1747. It became an international best-seller and one of the most influential novels of all time. Austen used her limited funds to pay for Sense and Sensibility to be published on commission. She would share the profits if it sold and bear the loss if it didn’t. You know the rest of that story!


The wonderful part of current publishing is the variety of ways to print. Someone wants to read your manuscript, perhaps for pay, but maybe for free. Decide why you write; define your goals; then think about your audience. Investigate the expense and plan for it. Most of all, work at your craft and share it. Writing’s your gift, and there’s someone out there who will treasure your words.



M.C. Bunn
Publisher: Bellastoria Press
Publication Date: April 23, 2021
Print Length: 466 pages
Genre: Historical Romance
Feisty, independent heiress Winifred de la Coeur has never wanted to live according to someone else’s rules—but even she didn’t plan on falling in love with a bank robber.

Winifred is a wealthy, nontraditional beauty who bridles against the strict rules and conventions of Victorian London society. When she gets caught up in the chaos of a bungled bank robbery, she is thrust unwillingly into an encounter with Court Furor, a reluctant getaway driver and prizefighter. In the bitter cold of a bleak London winter, sparks fly.

Winifred and Court are two misfits in their own circumscribed worlds—the fashionable beau monde with its rigorously upheld rules, and the gritty demimonde, where survival often means life-or-death choices.

Despite their conflicting backgrounds, they fall desperately in love while acknowledging the impossibility of remaining together. Returning to their own worlds, they try to make peace with their lives until a moment of unrestrained honesty and defiance threatens to topple the deceptions they have carefully constructed to protect each other.

A story of the overlapping entanglements of Victorian London’s social classes, the strength of family bonds and true friendship, and the power of love to heal a broken spirit.
Note from ELF: I had technical difficulties earlier, so I have changed the excerpt while I was updating the post, because several of the other stops on the tour presented that one and I wanted to provide more variety to potential fans of this story. Sorry for any confusion.

Chapter 2

A Fool and His Money Are Soon Parted


Approaching the right turn that would take him to Swift Street and the Royal Empire Bank, Court Furor concentrated on traffic. Cold bit his cheeks and hunger gnawed his belly, but he ignored both through force of habit. The soles of his boots were thin and his gloves pointless…No point worrying about what the day would bring, never mind the next one…He was a man of no prospects and no property but preferred to think of it as freedom from responsibility…It was no secret he fancied himself a bit of a lad though he wasn’t overly tempted by long, romantic entanglements. An hour or two with a willing girl would suit…


He directed the horse to a slow walk, trying to secure a place in the queue for the curb. In the gleaming brougham beside him sat a woman, her face hidden under an enormous, bright green hat trimmed with black ostrich feathers. Her driver signaled, and Court tugged his reins…Though a thick veil covered her face, Court caught a glimpse of golden hair, coiled in heavy masses on her shoulders. The wind lifted the edge of her mantle, and he was briefly amazed by the brilliant green of her dress…She’d obviously never missed a meal in her life.




Suddenly Geoff and a woman appeared at the bottom of the stairs…Their progress was impeded by the woman’s wildly kicking little boots. Her struggles and the flashes of her bright green and purple silks made her look like an exotic bird thrashing in Geoff’s arms….


Geoff…thrust the woman at him…the woman struggled and kicked…and cried for help. Involuntarily, he clapped his hand over her mouth. She only screamed louder.


“Shut up, you fat sow!” Geoff swatted her across the temple….


The woman’s eyes rolled and she went limp.


 Court howled in dismay and caught her… In his arms, she was a mountain of soft cashmere and folds of velvet. Her mantle fell open, and her scent hit him. Lilies and some dark, exotic spice. It was so unexpected and heavenly that the alley and the hackney disappeared. Even his panic was gone.


“…We can’t take ’er!”


Geoff clicked off the safety and waved the pistol under Court’s nose. When Court did not let go of the woman, he pointed the pistol at her head. “I ain’t arguin’! Drive!” He slammed the cab door…


His heart hammering, his head whirling, Court untied the horse, swung up onto the box, and grabbed the reins. As he turned the cab into the street behind the bank, yet another fire truck raced past. Jesus, Mary, and Joseph! They were in for it now.






Author info and links:

M. C. Bunn is a writer of Victorian romance and historical romance novels, a singer (in the indie rock band Mister Felix), and a songwriter. She holds an English degree from UNC-Chapel Hill and a master’s in English from North Carolina State University.

"I've always loved writing. It's a joy to do what makes me happy and to share it.

“My father was a great story-teller. He read to us at the dinner table and passed on his love of history. He’d haul me out of bed in the middle of the night if there was a great old movie on the late show, and family trips always included visits to historic sites. His father was born in 1888, and I have Granddaddy's letters to his bride-to-be in my dresser. I'm working on the story of Daddy's first ancestor in America. It's set in Jamestown, 1690. My mother's grandmother was placed in an orphanage after the Civil War because her father died on the way home, so I always felt that connection to and had a curiosity about the past. Both of my parents read to me before I could walk. Daddy gave me Dickens, Twain, and Stevenson. Mama put the dictionary in my hands and let me watch I, Claudius and Shoulder to Shoulder when they first aired on Masterpiece Theatre. She told me I'd be a writer one day.”

Acting was another girlhood passion. “I wanted to play all the characters in the books I'd read, or in the stories I made up, like Dickens and Louisa May Alcott did. I also wanted to be an archaeologist because we knew one who worked on digs in Israel. There was never a time when I wasn't making up a story, and it was always set 'a long time ago.' What I really wished for was the car in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, so I could fly back in time and see what it was actually like for women in Victorian and Edwardian England.”

When she's not writing, she loves reading long old books. "I love Anthony Trollope's series, and Anna Karenina. Of more recent vintage, I really enjoyed The Forsyte Saga and The Raj Quartet."

Her idea of a well-appointed room includes multiple bookshelves, a full pot of coffee, and a place to lie down and read. To feed her soul, she takes a walk or makes music with friends. "I try to remember to look up at the sky and take some time each day to be thankful."

She lives in North Carolina with her husband and their dog. Where Your Treasure Is is her first published novel.


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The tour dates can be found here




  1. M. C. Bunn
    Thank you to The Reading Addict for hosting me today! I'm look forward to meeting your readers and getting their comments and questions about Where Your Treasure Is. I'll check in throughout the day, so if you don't hear from me at first, I'll be back!

  2. Nice excerpt! Congrats on your release!

    1. M. C. Bunn
      I'm an old movie fan, so I love a combination of suspenseful action, adventure, period costumes, and some Austen-style verbal repartee. To learn more about Winifred and Court, preview Chapters 1-2 on my website! Thank you for the kind words and for posting today!

  3. M. C. Bunn
    This excerpt focuses on Court, so to get better acquainted with Winifred (and to find out how she got into such trouble), preview Chapter 1-2 on my website. Meeting Court and Geoff wasn't what she had in mind when she left her family in Hampstead that morning. Thank you for reading and posting!

  4. This sounds like a very good book.

  5. M. C. Bunn
    Find more on the website, from a playlist to evoke characters and scenes to my blog, Treasures! Thank you for keeping up with the tour.