Guest Post, Q&A

Q&A: Elyssa Patrick of ONCE UPON A CHRISTMAS

Once Upon a Christmas Elyssa Patrick J.K. Coi Tiffany Clare Maggie Robinson

Hi everyone! My name is Elyssa Patrick, and I’m one of the authors of the Christmas anthology, Once Upon a Christmas.


Here is the blurb for Once Upon a Christmas:

The holidays are a time for family, celebration—and the Dukes of Ravenglass to fall in love. Spend the Christmas season with the Wynter family, as the Dukes of Ravenglass find their happily-ever-afters in this delightful, heartfelt collection that spans from the Regency era to the present day.

In A Price Above Rubies by Maggie Robinson, set in the Regency era, paid companion Helen Lowe doesn’t know the man she shares her first-ever dance—and first-ever kiss—is Gabriel Wynter, a reclusive, notorious duke. When Helen flees after being exposed, she leaves behind something of far greater value than a glass slipper. Can Gabriel find her, return it, and finally open his heart?

In the Victorian-era set, Never Have I Ever Fallen in Love with a Duke by Tiffany Clare, Alexander Wynter has a problem—his best friend’s younger sister grew up. When he agreed to help Emily MacCallon make her debut, he didn’t expect the beautiful, alluring woman before him—or for her to lead him on such a merry chase. Alexander knows one thing: the only man she’ll be kissing forever and ever is him.

In the World War II-set, Loving Lord Spy by J.K. Coi, Winnie Jenkins, a combat nurse, and Lord David Wynter, an injured British spy, fall in love at the worst possible time. Each of them owes a duty to their country and must go their separate ways. They promise that when the war is finally over, they’ll meet in Hyde Park on Christmas morning…but agree that if one of them doesn’t make it, the other won’t seek out the reason why. Can they keep their appointment? Or will secrets, lies, and the perils of war keep them apart?

A missed connection gets a second chance in the present-day contemporary romance, Saved by the Belle by Elyssa Patrick. Seven years ago, Kit Wynter met the woman of his dreams. Even after all this time, he’s never been able to forget the American girl who captured his heart. When Belle Sweeney answers his ad—for she, too, never forgot him—it feels like there’s something still there. Spending the holiday at Ravenglass Abbey is the perfect opportunity to figure out if this is love.

I cannot wait for everyone to read it!


1. What is it about a duke that’s so appealing?

What’s not to love about a duke! Dukes are like royalty, or even, a historical version of a rock star. Dukes are powerful, wealthy, and handsome (especially when you read a romance!). He’s the fairy tale prince. He’s the man who sees you above all other women in a crowded room. And you’re the one who is able to bring this man to his knees. A duke is powerful in all things…except when it comes to matters of the heart.

For me, the appeal of the duke is not only this fairy tale-like creation, but that the heroine is the one who truly has the power in the book. Without her, the duke remains this other thing—this distant, revered figure who is only seen as a duke and nothing more. With the heroine and her love, the duke becomes more than a duke. He becomes the man he’s meant to be: his true self. He becomes real. And to make a man like that fall in love—to see and love you for being you—is a powerful, heady, romantic feeling.

2. What makes a holiday romance novel special to you?

I always love holiday romances! It’s a time for celebration and family…and love. I just adore it when the couple falls for each other during a holiday…especially when it’s a Winter-set one. All that snow and mistletoe makes for a lot of good kissing opportunities!

3. Do you have any special rituals for reading a book? (Ex: special tea and a cozy reading space)

There’s nothing better than curling up on the couch with a blanket, a hot cup of tea, any kind of chocolate, and my Kindle.

4. Who is your favorite Romance heroine and why?

This is a tough one! I love so many heroines that it’s hard to choose just one, but I’ll try.

Off the top of my head, my favorite heroine of the moment is Evie Jenner from Devil in Winter by Lisa Kleypas. I always go back to this book when I need a pick-me-up, or want to read a romance where the underdog has her day. I really identified with Evie when this book came out. She’s just so underestimated by practically everyone in her life, and I love how Evie comes into her own. She just has so much strength, heart, loyalty, bravery, love, and determination. I always root for her and Sebastian when I re-read this book over and over and over and over again.

5. What’s the most interesting thing you’ve learned from reading and writing Romance?

I think the most interesting thing I’ve learned is to be true to myself in my writing. For a long time, I thought I had to be something else…something different—and it caused me a lot of headache and stress. One day I woke up and realized I could just be me; I didn’t have to be anyone but me. I think this is also a key component in romance—that the heroes and heroines become who they really are supposed to be. That, and the happily ever after! Honestly I really don’t like to waste my time on books or movies that don’t have a happily ever after. Life is way too short!

Thank you so much for having me on! I hope everyone checks out Once Upon a Christmas!


Elyssa Patrick is a former high school English teacher who left the classroom to pursue her dream of writing romances. She writes quirky romantic comedies that are full of humor, heat, and heart. Elyssa lives in New York and is hard at work on her next novel.

Elyssa can be found on Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, and ElyssaPatrick.com.

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