Sarah, Duchess of York has landed a book deal with romantic fiction publisher Mills & Boon, admitting she "drew on many parallels from my life" for the historical tale.
Her debut novel is called Her Heart For A Compass and will be released in the summer.
It tells a fictional account of the life and love story of the duchess's great-great-aunt Lady Margaret Montagu Douglas Scott.
Sarah, Duchess of York’s debut novel to be published by Mills & Boon
- FILE PHOTO JUNE 1986 - The solicitors of Britain's Duke and Duchess of York, pictured before their 1986 wedding, announced April 16 the couple are to divorce. [The marriage between Queen Elizabeth II's second son Andrew and Sarah Ferguson is likely to be over by May said the statement from the solicitors of both.]
The Duchess of York Sarah Ferguson (C) smiles with her daughters Beatrice (L) and Eugenie as they wait for the ski lift in the Swiss resort of Verbier April 20
Wearing her wedding and engagement rings The Duchess of York, Sarah Ferguson promotes her new book "Sarah, The Duchess of York" during a book signing November 25. The book tells of her marriage and divorce from Prince-Andrew, her affair with Johnny-Bryan and her relationship with the Royal family.
The Duchess of York, Sarah Ferguson (L) poses next to a man, dressed in the uniform of Queen Elizabeth's guard, prior to a book signing hour in Lugner's shopping center, February 6. The Duchess was guest of honour of Austrian building magnate Richard Lugner at the traditional Opera Ball in Vienna and was reportedly being paid USD 50,000 for her attendance.
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Tiger Woods walks off the 18th green with the Duchess of York, Sarah Ferguson (R), his mother Tida Woods, and caddie Mike Cowan (L) after winning the $1.8 million Byron Nelson Classic at the TCP at Las Colinas Golf Course in Irving, May 18. Woods, in his first tournament since dominating The Masters, finished at 17-under-par.
Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York, speaks to Larry King during an interview November 20, Sarah Ferguson appeared on the Larry King Live program on the CNN network in New York.
Sarah Ferguson, Britain's Duchess of York and her daughters Eugenie (R) and Beatrice, pose for photographers prior to going skiing on the slopes near the Swiss resort of Verbier February 16.
Britains's Duchess of York, Sarah Ferguson (top R) and daughters Eugenie (below L) and Beatrice (below R) pose for photographers with Ex-husband Prince Andrew (top L) in the Swiss resort of Verbier February 19. Prince Andrew joined his family for his 38th birthday.
Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York leaves a memorial service for her mother, Susan Barrantes at St Paul's Church in Knightsbridge, December 15. Barrantes was killed in a car crash last September near her home in Argentina.
Britain's Prince Andrew (rear L), the Duchess of York Sarah Ferguson (rear R) and their daughters Eugenie (front L) and Beatrice pose for photographers prior to going skiing on the slopes near Verbier, Switzerland, February 19. Members of the Royal family continue to take their winter holidays in Swiss resorts.
Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York, smiles after drinking lemon juice in the British ambassador's residence in Warsaw December 2. The Duchess was awarded the Order of the Smile by a Polish children's charity foundation on Thursday and under a local custom, a laureate of the Order has to drink a glass of pure lemon juice and smile. Ferguson is watched by an unidentified member of the order at right.
Britain's Princess Beatrice (C) arrives for her first day at St George's school in Ascot with her parents Britain's Prince Andrew (R) and the Duchess of York Sarah Ferguson, September 6, 2000. The Duke and Duchess decided to send her to St. George's School after the Swiss school where she was supposed to attend was caught up in a police investigation.
The Duchess of York Sarah Ferguson is seen in this November 8, 2000 file photo in the eastern Indian city of Calcutta. Prince Philip, husband of Britain's Queen Elizabeth, has barred his former daughter-in-law the Duchess of York from celebrating Christmas with the royal family, a British newspaper reported on Friday.
The Duchess of York, Sarah Ferguson (C) and her daughters Beatrice (L)
and Eugenie arrive at the Premiere of "Harry Potter and the
Philosopher's Stone" at the Odeon Leicester Square, November 4, 2001.
The film based on the book by J K Rowling staring newcomer Daniel
Radcliffe as the child wizard Harry Potter. REUTERS/Dan Chung
Sarah Ferguson (L) and Prince Charles (R) look on as the Dalai Lama delivers a lecture at Central Hall in Westminster, London, May 28, 2004. The exiled Tibetan spiritual leader, who is on a seven day visit to Britain, gave a speech entitled 'A Human Approach To World Peace'. REUTERS/Kirsty Wigglesworth/Pool. DBP/CRB
Sarah Ferguson (L), Duchess of York, poses with McDonald's character "Ronald McDonald" during a media event for the 2005 World Children's Day at the Ronald McDonald house in Los Angeles November 15, 2005. World Children's Day will be celebrated on November 20, 2005, a global program to raise funds for Ronald McDonald House Charities which provides services for children's causes. REUTERS/Fred Prouser
Robin Williams (L) and Sarah Ferguson, the Duchess of York take over the auction reins at the amfAR's Cinema Against AIDS 2006 event in Mougins, France May 25, 2006.
Britain's Princess Beatrice (L) and her mother Sarah Ferguson arrive for a [pre-World Cup party at the Herfordshire home of David and Victoria Beckham] in southern England May 21, 2006.
Formula One - F1 - Monaco Grand Prix 2007 - Monte Carlo - 26/5/07
Sarah Ferguson and daughters
Mandatory Credit: Action Images / Crispin Thruston
Actress Sigourney Weaver arrives with Sarah Ferguson at the 67th annual Golden Globe Awards in Beverly Hills, California January 17, 2010. REUTERS/ Mario Anzuoni (GOLDENGLOBES-ARRIVALS) (UNITED STATES - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT)
Britain's Prince Andrew and his former wife Sarah Ferguson pose with their daughter Beatrice, following her graduation ceremony at Goldsmiths College in London September 9, 2011. REUTERS/Ian Nicholson/Pool (BRITAIN - Tags: ENTERTAINMENT EDUCATION SOCIETY ROYALS)
Horse Racing - Royal Ascot - Ascot Racecourse - 19/6/15
Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York and Prince Andrew, Duke of York
Reuters / Toby Melville
Horse Racing - Royal Ascot - Ascot Racecourse, Ascot, Britain - June 23, 2017 Duchess of York Sarah Ferguson and Princess Eugenie REUTERS/Toby Melville
Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York, and Princess Beatrice of York arrive for the royal wedding of Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank at St George's Chapel in Windsor Castle, Windsor, Britain October 12, 2018. REUTERS/Toby Melville
VENICE, ITALY - NOVEMBER 15: Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York and Jodie Kidd visits the flooded zones in Venice on November 15, 2019 in Venice, Italy. (Photo by Daniele Venturelli/Daniele Venturelli/Getty Images )
MESTRE, ITALY - NOVEMBER 15: Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York attends the Geox Dragon Formula E car launch on November 15, 2019 in Mestre, Italy. (Photo by Daniele Venturelli/Daniele Venturelli/Getty Images )
LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 01: Sarah Ferguson and Joan Collins attend the BFI Luminous Fundraising Gala at The Roundhouse on October 01, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Dave J Hogan/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - 2019/09/20: Sarah Ferguson attends the British Heart Foundation's Heart Hero Awards at the Underglobe, Bankside in London. (Photo by Keith Mayhew/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JUNE 26: Sarah Ferguson, Duchess of York attends the UK launch of The Female Social Network at The Ivy on June 26, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images for The Female Social Network (TFSN))
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Mills & Boon describes it as an "immersive historical saga" that "sweeps the reader from the drawing rooms of Victoria's court and the grand country houses of Scotland and Ireland, to the slums of London and the mercantile bustle of 1870s New York".
It follows Lady Margaret "who desires to break the mould, follow her internal compass – her heart – and discover her raison d'etre – falling in love along the way".
Sarah revealed she came across Lady Margaret after researching her ancestry and became fascinated because Margaret is her middle name.
She told how she took inspiration from her own experiences when writing the work.
The duchess was pictured in a Victorian-style floor-length outfit, complete with high-necked blouse, jacket and gloves, sat on a stone bench gazing at a compass she held out in front of her, to promote the work.
She said: "Although her parents, the Duke and Duchess of Buccleuch were close friends with Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, I was unable to discover much about my namesake's early life, and so was born the idea which became Her Heart For A Compass.
"With real historical events and facts to hand, my imagination took over. I invented a history for her that incorporated real people and events, including some of my other ancestors.
"I created a friendship between my heroine and Princess Louise, Queen Victoria's sixth child, and I drew on many parallels from my life for Lady Margaret's journey."
The duchess – the Duke of York's ex-wife and the Queen's former daughter-in-law – brought renewed vigour to the monarchy in the 1980s alongside Diana, Princess of Wales, but struggled to come to terms with the rigorous disciplines of royal life after marrying Andrew.
Born Sarah Ferguson and nicknamed Fergie by the press, she once confessed: "I was hopeless from the start... they could never make me the perfect princess."
She was cast out from the royals amid her "toe-sucking" scandal in the 1990s, and fell deeply into debt, owing millions.
The duchess, who has previously written her memoirs, is the author of numerous children's books including the Little Red and Budgie the Little Helicopter series, and she was an executive producer of the 2009 historical film The Young Victoria.
She has been reading children's books throughout the pandemic on her YouTube channel, Storytime with Fergie and Friends.
Sarah added: "I have long held a passion for historical research and telling the stories of strong women in history through film and television.
"I am proud to bring my personal brand of historical fiction to the publishing world."
She wrote the book with author Marguerite Kaye, who is described as her "collaborator and mentor".
Kaye has written more than 50 novels for Mills & Boon set across the ages and her books and novellas have sold more than 1.5 million copies in over 20 countries.
Mills & Boon – the UK's number one publisher of romantic fiction – was established in 1908.
Its books – which are written by women for women – range from historical romance to rom-com and erotica, and one is sold every 10 seconds in the UK.
Lisa Milton, executive publisher for Mills & Boon, described the duchess's book as a "brilliant sweeping story".
She added: "Mills & Boon are honoured to publish the Duchess of York's debut novel as we move into our next century of publishing brilliant books by women for women."
– Her Heart For A Compass will be published on August 3 2021 by William Morrow in the US and Mills & Boon in the UK, both HarperCollins.