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  • Writer's pictureVeronica Cline Barton

How Meghan Markle Helped Inspire My Writing of The Crown for Castlewood Manor

Meghan Markle and I have something in common, we both began major new phases of our life journeys in 2016. For Meghan, she would begin dating HRH Prince Harry, at first under cloak and dagger, and then coming out together publically. We know they fell in love,  they’re getting married in a Royal wedding to be held at Windsor Castle on May 19th (Confession–I’ll be watching, will you?)

New flash, I did not start dating a royal prince in 2016 (I’m married to my Prince Charming thank you). I did start writing The Crown for Castlewood Manor in 2016, however, an endeavor that has completely transformed my life. I was constantly worried that I couldn’t write–I was too old–I wasn’t trained as a writer—suppose I wrote a book and no one wanted to read it….I had all the self-doubts writers have. Then I saw this American woman dating a prince, taking a risk, and transitioning into a new role in her life, in front of the world, subjected to continuous monitoring of every detail of her life. I decided that if Meghan could do it, so could I.  I wrote.

My main character Gemma knows a little of how Meghan must feel as an American in a royal world full of glamourous events and fashions–it’s magnificent and exciting, but it can be tough for an American not born into noble or royal lineage. I’m glad the family and friends of Meghan will protect and guide her just as character Gemma’s family guides her in this new world. Everyone needs a hug of reassurance at times, even a royal. I know for a fact writers do!

I think Meghan would approve of the food and wine endeavors being pursued at Cherrywood Hall (#TIG, she loved her wines and foods from around the world—my kind of woman). In my book I am excited to bring the wines and foods to life as the characters discuss the major happenings that occur in the stories–a little sherry or sparkling wine is surely needed when a murder occurs, don’t you think?

My hope is for people to get to know Meghan (and Gemma) before judging.  I think people will see the good they bring, and will get to like them more. In my fictional world, I know this will happen. I hope it turns true for Meghan, as she must live it in the real world. She inspired me, and I will always be grateful.

I’m a proud American Anglophile, so yes I will be watching the news, blogs, tweets, Pins, Instagram pics that will fill our screens in the next few months with everything royal (I haven’t even addressed #royalbaby3 yet). I’m looking forward to getting my cook book this week by Claire Ptak, American royal wedding cake maker for Meghan and Harry. I may even try the lemon elderflower cake recipes floating around (although as an American I’m not quite sure what an elderflower is or how it tastes). In 2018 Meghan will get married to her prince, and my books, once just dreams, are now being published.

BTW, Meghan and Harry will receive a copy of The Crown for Castlewood Manor as a wedding present, signed of course 🙂 Gemma would approve.

Crowns and Kisses,


P.S. The featured picture today (red star is my add) is a screenshot of a Daily Mail ad Barnes and Noble is currently promoting for The Crown for Castlewood Manor, now available on in addition to Amazon. I happened to snap a picture of the ad just as it came up over an article on Ms. Markle in the Daily Mail featured on March 24th. Quite frankly, I feel just as jubilant as Meghan—we both are beginning our new lives, and it’s great. I think I’ll wear my crown today 🙂

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