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An evening with Choc Lit’s very own, Morton Gray..!

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Today on my blog, I’m very pleased to host my wonderful friend Morton Gray, during the week that she publishes her debut novel, The Girl on the Beach.

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Good morning, Morton, tell us a little about yourself.

I live in Worcestershire, U.K. with my husband, two sons and Lily the little white dog. I won Choc Lit Publishing’s Search for a Star competition with my novel “The Girl on the Beach” in March 2016. The novel is e-published in all electronic formats on 24 January 2017. It is a contemporary romantic suspense novel set in the fictional seaside town of Borteen.

Could I ask, how long have you been writing and working toward the goal of being published?

Having delighted in the written word for as long as I can remember, I guess you could say since I learned to write, but, as with many writers, life and work got in the way for a long time. In 2006, I entered a short story competition and, unexpectedly, won. After that, I began to wonder whether I could write a novel. I soon discovered how little I knew and enrolled on courses to learn how to write the many stories in my head.

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Can you describe the time you realised you were a ‘real writer’?

Tantalising glimmers of possible publication success appeared when I began to shortlist in novel competitions. One shortlisting for the former Festival of Romance New Talent Award in 2014, gave me the opportunity to meet you, Lynda, when you were shortlisted too.

I joined the Romantic Novelists’ Association (RNA) New Writers’ Scheme (NWS) in 2012, the scheme allows a critique by a novelist for every year you are a member and I began to see more encouraging comments in these reports as I progressed. It is all a learning curve.

I guess I’ve taken my writing more seriously since I began to get favourable responses from those reading my work.

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I love the cover for The Girl on the Beach, but what was the inspiration behind it?

 My novels tend to start from a spark of an idea. This one was born after a friend, who runs an art gallery in Worcester, held an art competition at my son’s high school. This, combined with a couple of headlines on a news website gave me the start of the story, which I began to scribble on the back of an envelope on a journey down the motorway. (I hasten to add that my husband was driving).

How did you come up with your story concept?

The wonder of writing for me is the unfolding of a story, almost as if it is downloaded from the ether. It feels like the story concept finds me, rather than me coming up with it.

Are any of your characters based on your life and experience?

My characters are purely fictional, but it is inevitable that snippets of my experience leak into the books. For example, my heroine in “The Girl on the Beach”, Ellie, hates opening birthday presents and I have a little of this phobia. I’d much rather give presents than receive them.

Who is your favourite character and why?

My favourite character is Ellie Golden, my heroine. She is a survivor and a fiercely protective mother.

Do you become attached to your characters and have a hard time letting go of them, or are you happy their story is told and you can move on to the next project?

I have so many stories to tell that I am happy to move on to the next book. Having said that, other characters in “The Girl on the Beach” have demanded their own story, so you are likely to see those characters in the future.

If you could be any of your characters, which would it be and why?

 I guess it would be Mandy Vanes, the heroine’s best friend in “The Girl on the Beach”. She is more carefree than I’ve ever managed to be, but is it all an illusion? I’m writing her story at the moment…

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What is your writing process? Which comes first, the story, the characters, or setting?

The characters come first, followed by the setting and then the story unfolds. If I am in the flow, it is as if the characters are speaking to me, sometimes so quickly that I can’t write fast enough. I adore the alchemy of this process. I tend to write long hand in notebooks, usually in cafes, as it’s too distracting at home. I type up my words when I get back.

Are you a meticulous plotter or do you just let it flow?

Before my writing journey began, I would have predicted that I would be a plotter, as I like organisation, process and logic, but to my surprise my best work is achieved when I just let the words flow. In this way, you could almost say that I act out of character when I’m writing.

How would you describe your writing style?

My books unfold as I write them, so I hope that my readers get the same experience. Beyond that I think I’ll have to ask for answers on a postcard when people have read the book.

How long does it take you to write a book?

I like to write a first draft quickly, usually in a month. Following this speed write, I need to undertake research for details, examine the way the story is written and the elements I need to discard or move around. I’m often writing more than one book at the same time because of the way I write.

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What kind of research do you undertake?

I prefer to get the main bones of a story down before I undertake detailed research, mainly to avoid a huge dump of information and to focus the research I undertake. I will mainly be researching detailed things about an occupation or something that happens in the story beyond my own experience.

What part of writing a novel do you find most challenging?

I love the first draft. The thing I find most challenging is carving up my ideas and deciding what to keep and what to discard. Some of my favourite bits of the first draft are often red herrings for the final book and sadly have to go.

Have you used beta readers, and if so, do you recommend them?

I had two main readers for The Girl on the Beach. One read the novel when it was a raw first draft and the other when it was more polished. My confidence in my work can be quite fragile at the early stages, so I’d say choose very wisely who sees your work and always be specific about what areas or aspects of your work you want an opinion about.

What can your readers expect when they read your book?

Hopefully, they can expect to unravel a mystery alongside my hero and heroine. In ‘The Girl on the Beach” Harry doesn’t remember Ellie at all, but she is sure she has known him before, but in those days, he was not called Harry Dixon!

Can you tell us what you are writing now?

I am writing three books, all centred around my fictional seaside town of Borteen. One is the best friend’s story from “The Girl on the Beach.”

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Learn the craft of writing, read lots, write lots. Try different genres, different writing styles and approaches, so that you can find your own particular way of writing and voice.

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Do you think being a member of an association, such as the Romantic Novelists’ Association is beneficial to new writers, or is a local writing group more helpful?

I would have to say both. My membership of the RNA New Writers’ Scheme was undoubtedly crucial in my success in winning Choc Lit’s Search for a Star competition, as I had benefitted from the critique of another writer.

Equally, my local writing associations with Sue Johnson’s Pershore writing class, the RNA Birmingham chapter and the little group of writers I meet with monthly provide an important sounding board and help with maintaining morale for those times you believe everything you are writing is rubbish.

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Do you ever experience writers’ block? If so, how do you get past it?

I don’t tend to get blocked when I’m writing, more unsure how to proceed on some plot points. I find a coffee with a friend, a shower or even ironing free my mind, indeed anything where I can’t focus on writing, because my subconscious then does the job itself.

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Blurb For “The Girl on the Beach” by Morton S. Gray

Who is Harry Dixon?

When Ellie Golden meets Harry Dixon, she can’t help but feel she recognises him from somewhere. But when she finally realises who he is, she can’t believe it – because the man she met on the beach all those years before wasn’t called Harry Dixon. And, what’s more, that man is dead.

For a woman trying to outrun her troubled past and protect her son, Harry’s presence is deeply unsettling – and even more disconcerting than coming face to face with a dead man, is the fact that Harry seems to have no recollection of ever having met Ellie before. At least that’s what he says …

But perhaps Harry isn’t the person Ellie should be worried about. Because there’s a far more dangerous figure from the past lurking just outside of the new life she has built for herself, biding his time, just waiting to strike.

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Biography for Morton S. Gray

Morton lives with her husband, two sons and Lily, the tiny white dog, in Worcestershire, U.K.

She has been reading and writing fiction for as long as she can remember, penning her first attempt at a novel aged fourteen, the plot of which closely resembled an Errol Flynn film. As with many authors, life got in the way of writing for many years until she won a short story competition in 2006 and the spark was well and truly reignited.

She studied creative writing with the Open College of the Arts and joined the Romantic Novelists’ New Writers’ Scheme in 2012.

After shortlisting in several first chapter competitions, she won The Choc Lit Publishing Search for a Star competition in 2016 with her novel ‘The Girl on the Beach’. This debut novel is published on 24 January 2017. The story follows a woman with a troubled past as she tries to unravel the mystery surrounding her son’s headteacher, Harry Dixon.

Previous ‘incarnations’ were in committee services, staff development and training. Morton has a Business Studies degree and is a fully qualified Clinical Hypnotherapist and Reiki Master. She also has diplomas in Tuina Acupressure Massage and Energy Field Therapy.

She enjoys crafts, history and loves tracing family trees. Having a hunger for learning new things is a bonus for the research behind her books.

www.mortonsgray.com

Twitter – @MortonSGray

Facebook Page – Morton S. Gray Author – https://www.facebook.com/mortonsgray/

Purchasing links for “The Girl on the Beach” at http://www.choc-lit.com/dd-product/the-girl-on-the-beach/

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AFTERNOON TEA WITH AMANDA JAMES

CREAM TEA with AMANDA JAMES..!!

Well, seeing as I’m sat here drinking tea and eating scones with Amanda James in the beautiful cornwall…

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I thought I’d ask her a few questions about her new book… SUMMER IN TINTAGEL which was released on the 16th July 2016.

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Hi Mandy and thank you for inviting me to tea…. the scones are delicious…!! 

For the purpose of our readers, would you like to tell us a little about yourself?
I used to be a teacher but left the profession in 2012 after 15 years. I really loved working with the children, but I had always wanted to be a writer and decided that it was a now or never moment. So glad I did. I have four novels published already, Summer in Tintagel is my fifth.

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How long have you been writing and working toward the goal of being published?

I was bought a typewriter when I was eight after much nagging and never really stopped after that. I decided to take it up seriously thought around 2002 and wrote my first novel then – that became Dancing in the Rain. I was teaching full-time so it took ages before I was actually published. It was a short story in 2010.

Can you describe the time you realised you were a ‘real writer?’

It was when I got the email to say I had the short story published, and then later when I had my first novel accepted. I didn’t think it would ever really happen, but it did!

It’s an amazing feeling isn’t it…??
So, this is your fifth book… can you tell us what the inspiration was behind SUMMER IN TINTAGEL?

The inspiration for Summer in Tintagel came from a walk along the cliff tops at the ancient Tintagel Castle. As I stood on the edge looking onto the rocks I thought how easy it would be to step off and end it all … if a person was so inclined. I’m not, in case you were wondering! Then the ideas kind of came to me from there. I visited Tintagel Castle again later and the sketchy parts became easier to see, bold and exciting. I thought that whole area was the perfect setting for a novel – full of history and mystery. I liked the rugged landscape and the history and mystery of the area.

teacupThis tea is lovely by-the-way and served in such appropriate cups..!! And yes… another scone would be lovely..!! 

So… Would any of your story be based on your life and experience? Who is your favourite character and why?

Yes part of the story is based on my own experience. A few years ago I went with my daughter to see a psychic. It wasn’t the first time I’d done this over the years, but this experience topped them all and certainly gave me something to think about. We sat across a table from each other, in the very ordinary sitting room of a very ordinary house, while the psychic, Maureen shuffled a Tarot pack and then I chose a selection of cards. She turned the cards and said random things that could really apply to anybody, then she started telling me the names of members of my family.
By this stage I was trying not to let my mouth gape open, just nodded here and there, not really trusting my voice. Maureen also told me that I had some lovely vegetables growing in my garden and commented on which ones. She said, ‘Ooh, you’ve some lovely tomatoes and cucumbers there.’ I managed to nod. Then she said, ‘You like to feel the earth under your bare feet while tending them too, don’t you?’ I often did walk around the garden without shoes, still do. As you can imagine, I was gobsmacked to say the least. I asked her how she knew – she said, ‘Well I can see you there in the garden.’ She said it as if it was the most ordinary thing in the world. That really freaked me out I can tell you!
To answer your second question – because of this experience, I was able to create a character in Summer in Tintagel called Morganna, who happens to be a white witch. Maureen wasn’t of course, nor was she remotely anything like her in appearance or personality, but they are very similar in their abilities. I really enjoyed incorporating a little of what I experienced into the scenes between Morganna and my main character, Rosa. My favourite character? Hmm it is a tie between Morganna and Rosa.

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I love ‘white witches’, in fact I believe my family are descendants of the Romany’s. I’d love to know if it were true and of course everyone loved to read about the ‘white witch of Narnia’, didn’t they?
Have you ever become attached to your characters and have a hard time letting go of them, or are you happy their story is told and you can move on to the next project?

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Yes I do! I really loved writing Cross Stitch, the sequel to A Stitch in Time so I could go back and visit Sarah and John! Sometimes I know that the story is done and would be spoiled by a sequel. It is hard to leave the characters, but I always leave them happy with their lives.

If you could be any of your characters, which would it be and why?

If I really had to choose I would be Sarah Needler because she is a time traveller. I’d love to pop back in time on a regular basis and have a chat with historical characters.

I must admit… I loved both Cross Stitch and A Stitch in Time… great books. I believe that A Stitch in Time has 81 x 5 star reviews… so WELL DONE..!!
Are you a meticulous plotter or do you just let it flow?

I am definitely not a planner! I have the basis of a story and then sketch out the characters, jot down a vague idea of where they are going, and then I let them lead me. They often take me down roads I had never dreamt of travelling!
What part of writing a novel do you find most challenging?

I think it would have to be the beginning, middle, and the end… No, seriously, I often find it is the middle because I know where the story starts and ends; it is the middle that can become a bit tangled or saggy. Better than a soggy/saggy bottom I suppose? It is normally around the 30,000-ish mark.

Have you used beta readers, and if so, do you recommend them?
Yes I have and I think they are invaluable. We all get too close to our work and can’t or won’t see the problems! If you can get an honest and constructive beta reader then I would say go for it.

What can your readers expect when they read your book?

I hope they can enjoy an exciting read full of mystery, intrigue and love set against the rugged coastline of north Cornwall.

Can you tell us what you are writing now?

I am about to start a rewrite of a suspense called Cast Away Stones. It’s about a young woman’s search for her birth mother. However when she finds her, she wishes she hadn’t. I might have exciting news concerning that soon

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?
I think the main thing I would say to new writers is to learn from rejection, take on board what is said and come back stronger. Get a writing buddy that’s honest and perhaps join a writing group. Having said that, getting published and then moving on to the next step in your career has a hell of a lot to do with luck. Don’t give up if your luck is out sometimes. Just keep believing in yourself, try your hardest and never ever give up.

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Do you think being a member of an association, such as the Romantic Novelists’ Association is beneficial to new writers, or is a local writing group more helpful?

I think both are helpful, but I have never had direct experience of a local group. I think the RNA is invaluable to new writers and the New Writers’ Scheme in particular can make a huge difference to a writer’s chances. The support of everyone in it is phenomenal too.

So… for anyone wanting an amazing summer read…. then I suggest that SUMMER IN TINTAGEL would be a perfect read, on a lazy summers day…!!

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AVAILABLE NOW ON AMAZON… click here to buy….!! xx

The Blurb…

‘Funny, emotional and original, Amanda James has written another fabulous summer read’ – Sue Watson, bestselling author of Love, Lies and Lemon Cake

We all have secrets……

Ambitious journalist Rosa Fernley has been asked to fulfil her grandmother Jocelyn’s dying wish. Jocelyn has also passed on a secret – in the summer of 1968, fleeing from the terror of a bullying husband, she visited the mysterious Tintagel Castle. Jocelyn wasn’t seeking love, but she found it on the rugged clifftops in the shape of Jory, a local man as enigmatic and alluring as the region itself. But she was already married, and knew her husband would never let her find happiness and peace in Jory’s arms.

Now as her days are nearing their end, she begs Rosa to go back to Tintagel, but is unwilling, or unable, to tell her why. Rosa is reluctant – she has a job in London, a deadline that won’t wait and flights of fancy are just not in her nature. Nevertheless, she realises it might be the last thing she will do for her beloved grandmother and agrees to go.

Once in Tintagel, Rosa is challenged to confront secrets of her own, as shocking events threaten to change everything she has ever believed about herself and her family. She also meets a guide to the castle, Talan, a man who bears a striking resemblance to Jory.

Will the past remain cloaked in tragedy, sadness and the pain of unrequited love? Or can Rosa find the courage and strength to embrace the secrets of the past, and give hope to the future?

About Amanda

Amanda James has written since she was a child, but never imagined that her words would be published. Then in 2010, after many twists and turns, the dream of becoming a writer came true.

Amanda has written many short stories and has four novels currently published. A Stitch in Time was published in April of 2013 by http://www.choclitpublishing.co.uk and has met with great success.

Also with Choc Lit are Somewhere Beyond the Sea and Dancing in the Rain (March 2014)

Cross Stitch (December 2014)

Summer in Tintagel – Urbane Publications July 2016

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Amanda-James/e/B00BO7XBNQ/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1

Visit Amazon.co.uk‘s Amanda James Page and shop for all Amanda James books. Check out pictures, bibliography, biography and community discussions about Amanda James

 

Twitter – @akjames61

Facebook mandy.james.33

 

Summer in Tintagel (Urbane Publications July 2016)
Cross Stitch (Choc Lit December 2014)
Somewhere Beyond the Sea ( Choc Lit April 2014)
Dancing in the Rain (Choc Lit March 2014)
A Stitch in Time (Choc Lit) – http://www.choc-lit.com/
Righteous Exposure (Crooked Cat) – http://www.crookedcatbooks.com/

Interview with Choc Lit’s Kirsty Ferry

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Hi there Kirsty.

Thank you so much for coming today. Now then, seeing as I’ve prepared tea and cakes, shall we begin..??

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First, would you like to tell us a little about yourself?

I’m married with a fifteen year old son and live in the north east of England. We are 20 minutes away from beautiful countryside, 20 minutes away from the coast and 40 minutes away from Hadrian’s Wall. I love it up here! As well as writing, I have a day job and am studying for a Masters in Creative Writing –  so I often wish I had a clone. I’ve had both fiction and non-fiction published and must admit that I do err on the spooky side for my novels. The Girl in the Painting is my second Choc Lit novel and it’s kind of a linked sequel to Some Veil Did Fall. Both were great fun to write!

What compels you to write and when (your favourite time to write)?

The best time for me to write is in an afternoon – after lunch and before my son comes in from school. I do try to write in other spare moments though, for example if I’m hanging around places waiting. It bugs me when people gather around behind the laptop though. I feel as though they are trying to have a sneaky peek at what I’m doing! I’m terrible – I won’t let anyone read my work until it’s done. What compels me to write is an interesting one. I won’t say deadlines as I’m usually pretty good at being organised for them and they don’t phase me. I’d maybe say if I’m in the middle of a piece and I know the characters to the point where they’ve taken on a life of their own – to the point, in fact, where they are guiding the story, not me, and I want to crack on with it. I also love being creative and telling stories – so maybe that compels me too.

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Tell us a little about what are you writing at the moment? Or, what book are you about to release or have just released?

At the minute I’m working on my Masters’ projects, but one of those pieces has been informed by my work on The Girl in the Painting. I did a lot of research on Lizzie Siddal, the Pre-Raphaelite artist’s model for The Girl in the Painting  and some of the extra research has spilled out into other projects – for example, I did a 300 word piece of flash fiction on her which won the TubeFlash competition for Highgate Station in London, where she is buried. I loved writing The Girl in the Painting – it was a way for me to explore all sorts of things like art and London and people starting new lives, and also to revisit the characters from Some Veil Did Fall two years later. The Girl in the Painting is another timeslip novel, wherein my new heroine, Cori, moves down to London from Northumbria and meets Simon, an artist and tour guide at the Tate Britain. Both of them have a passion for all things Pre-Raphaelite and Cori gains possession of a diary, written by a Victorian girl named Daisy, which seems as if it could blow one of the most famous Pre-Raphaelite legends out of the water. The novel traces both Cori and Simon’s romance and Daisy’s life in Victorian London until it all leads to a rather shocking conclusion…

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Girl-Painting-Rossetti-Mysteries-Book-ebook/dp/B01BOFHI40/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1456222428&sr=8-1&keywords=the+girl+in+the+painting

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If you had to do an elevator pitch, how would you describe it?

This is a tough one – can ‘buy my book, it’s great!’ not suffice? No? Ok – how about:  The Girl in the Painting is a ghostly timeslip, tracing the parallel lives of modern-day Cori and Victorian Daisy. Is everything in the Pre-Raphaelite art world they both love everything it seems to be – or not?

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Are you a panster or a plotter? Or do you do a little of each?

Pantster. Definitely. I do not plot – I just don’t. I have an idea of the start and an idea of the end, but I usually just start with a concept. I write what I think the start should be and work from there. Inevitably, the story changes as I work on it. The characters usually start directing things and suddenly it’ll click. I’ll have that lightbulb moment and go ‘Aha!’ Then the start will change and the end will change – and often the bit in the middle will get reworked a little to drop in hints for the ending. I love working that way. Every book and every story is a surprise!

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Tell us about your Choc Lit journey? How did you come to be a Choc Lit author?

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http://www.amazon.co.uk/Some-Veil-Fall-Rossetti-Mysteries-ebook/dp/B00N7RC0R4/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1456224147&sr=8-1&keywords=kirsty+ferry

I wrote a short story on a university writing course which had sort of the same premise as Some Veil Did Fall. The heroine was called Becky, she visited a stately home on holiday and seemed to recognise the place. Then she saw a painting of a member of the family who looked identical to her. There was that element of reincarnation and is she/isn’t she going on, but it was only 1500 words long, if that. I continued with my degree and got a bit more experience in creative writing, won the English Heritage/Belsay Hall National Writing Competition, then decided to write a novel – The Memory of Snow, which is a timeslip situated on Hadrian’s Wall. Refuge, a vampire novel set on Holy Island followed that, along with some short stories for magazines such as Peoples Friend and Weekly News – and I ended up placing all the stories I’d done for that course in anthologies or magazines. I eventually returned to the Becky one and reread it, and decided I could do something more with it – and more importantly, do it much, much better. I extended it into a novel and saw Choc Lit mentioned in Writing Magazine as several of the authors had articles in there. I did some digging and found out they were a romance publisher and accepted paranormals and timeslips. I added more romance to my existing manuscript of Veil and sent it off. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. I got a lovely email from Lyn Vernham whilst on holiday in the October half-term – I remember reading it in bed in a Travelodge of all places! – and it said the panel loved it and would I like to meet up? So I said yes, and the rest is history. My book got reworked again, edited and made to shine, then it got published and it was incredibly exciting. A book signing followed at Goth Weekend in Whitby where I met the lovely Jane Lovering and we dressed up suitably Gothic-like, and all the time I was writing Portrait in the background, working, looking after a family and doing my undergraduate degree. Looking back, I was quite possibly mad! But here we are with my second Choc Lit book and hopefully the panel will like more of my stuff in the future as well. I have already submitted book three in the series to Choc Lit, which picks up the story three years in the future, and also another two novels in a different series. I’ll just have to see what happens and keep everything crossed! Nothing is guaranteed in the writing world and I fully understand that.

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If your hero was a type of chocolate, what would he be?

What else could he be but chocolate caramel??? My absolute favourites.

 

 

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How do you choose hero and heroine names?

Randomly, Very very randomly. I have a few girls’ first names squirrelled away that I really like and want to use. I’m going through those at the minute. Cori’s full name is Corisande – it was a name I encountered on a visit to a stately home years ago, when I was a teenager. It was on the family tree of the owners in the nineteenth century, and it was so unusual it stuck with me and I used it for Painting. I do like unusual names for heroines. Apart from Becky – I just liked the name and it suited her! Men’s names are more difficult. I can’t use names I associate with people I know – and as I have a son with lots of friends and worked briefly in a primary school, it’s hard to use names that don’t bring a vision of a child to me! I will always Google the full names of both hero and heroine, though, to make sure it’s not a real person if possible!

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What are your dreams for the future?

Gosh – for me and my loved ones to be happy and healthy I would say. World peace would be nice – and an end to all the horrible stuff we see in the news. Writing-wise, more of the same please! To pass my Masters, to have more books published and to continue to sell short stories and articles.

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What are you favourites:

Day of the week: Saturday! Long, hot bubble bath incorporating a book and wine night.

Book: Hmmm – would either be Wuthering Heights or Thornyhold.

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Author: based on the above – Emily Bronte or Mary Stewart. A more modern author would be Susanna Kearsley.

Holiday Destination: Brockdish in Norfolk.

Childhood memory: bizarrely, being in the back of the car with my Grandma. I used to lie down and rest my head in her lap to have a sleep. If I close my eyes and think about it, I can still smell the special smell of her clothes and feel how comfy it was with her hand stroking my hair. I tend not to do it though as I’d end up a blubbering wreck, even though she’s been gone almost thirty years. I think she’d be proud of me and in a way I still sense her around me. So yes – my Grandma!

Writing Moment: Winning the Belsay competition, being treated like a VIP for the day and seeing myself on the front page of The Journal! That morning, walking to work, my old boss pulled up his car and shouted ‘Well done!’ across one of the busiest streets in Newcastle. I felt like I had finally proved something and thought ‘I can do this!’.  Also getting my first five-star review on my first novel. That was a good ‘un too!

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Well…. I’d like to say a very big thank you Kirsty, for your 5 star interview.

 

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Thank you for reading xx

Guest Interview with Jane Risdon – Spinning plates and In a word: Murder

Good morning to everyone on this rainy saturday morning. I’m sitting in my office watching the raindrops bounce on the patio table, while the leaves fall from the tree, all over my beautifully mowed lawn (guess what I’ll be doing later..!!)

Lynda: Today I have the pleasure of interviewing Jane Risdon, author of In a word: Murder

Lynda: Before we start,  I’d like to say… “Get well soon”

Jane has recently had quite a serious operation on her shoulder and collar bone to repair the damage that she did when falling down the staircase at her sister’s house.

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Lynda: I asked Jane to tell me about herself, this was her amazing reply:

Jane Risdon: I began writing at an early age but didn’t take it up seriously until about four years ago. Having spent most of my adult life working in the International Music Business, working with song-writers, singers, record producers and in music publishing and production I spent most of my time on the road, touring, in the studio recording, or making music videos, so there was little time to concentrate on writing in any serious manner. An old friend, a successful award-winning writer, read some of my work and encouraged me to make time for myself and my own dreams and asked me to co-write a book with her. This is now underway. It is a departure from my usual Crime/Mystery stories and so many of my readers may well be surprised when it’s finally published.
I’m also working on several novels and short stories – some of which have been published on-line and in anthologies, as well as being pod-cast from time to time. I also write flash fiction.
I’m married to a musician whom I met when his band came to live nearby when I was still at school. We eventually worked together travelling the world with our artists and living in many countries over the years. We have one son and three grandchildren.

Lynda: Wow Jane, that’s quite impressive. I know who to contact if ever I want a rock star hero for my novel.

memory

Lynda: What is your favourite memory of writing?

Jane Risdon: I think it was probably when I actually managed to complete the first draft of Ms Birdsong Investigates – 100,000 words which made sense to me and looked like a ‘real’ manuscript. I was over-awed and thrilled and kept looking at it and wondering how on earth I managed to find all those words.

manuscript
Lynda: Where or what inspires you?

Jane Risdon: I get inspiration from all over the show. Sometimes I draw on past experiences – a lot of my stories are music based (but not all) and I often include an element of espionage in my stories which I guess comes from when I worked in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office before I got married. I walk a lot and take photos and get inspiration from what I see – ideas for locations mainly. I find I get the title of a story pop into my head and then I have to go and write something related. The News, people I meet and conversations I over-hear – have inspired me.

favourite characters
Lynda: Who is your favourite character from one of your own stories:

Jane Risdon:  I’m working on at the time. However, having said that I really love Ms Birdsong (Ms Birdsong Investigates); she is the ex MI5 Officer who is ‘retired’ prematurely from the service when a mission goes wrong. She moves to a rural Oxfordshire village, Ampney Parva in the Vale of the White Horse, and old habits die hard and she cannot resist keeping her neighbours under surveillance. Soon she finds herself investigating murder.

mi5

Lynda: Who is your perfect hero/heroine

Jane Risdon: Well, as you may have gathered by now I don’t write romance, I write crime and mystery, and so I am not sure I have any heroes in the sense you might be expecting me to have.

My heroes (heroines) would be from books such as Frenchman’s Creek (Daphne Du Maurier) and Jamaica Inn – strong female characters I suppose. I love the characters in Agatha Christie’s books –

missmarple

Ms Marple is amazing and I love her intellect and powers of deduction and perception. I adore Doris Day for many reasons (not a writer of course) but mainly for her hard work and determination as an artist, and her sheer talent of course.

dorris day

In general I am not one to have heroes/heroines and so I suppose I must disappoint with my response to this question; sorry.

Lynda: Not at all, it’s a good response.! I loved both Doris Day and Ms Marple.

happy-face-clipart-y4T9gyjiE

Lynda: Would you ever used parts of your own life in a novel?

Jane Risdon: I guess the answer to this is yes. I have tried not to but with the life I’ve led and having encountered the people (characters) I’ve met over the years and worked with, it would be hard not to base some of my characters and situations on my own life experiences. As I mentioned before I worked at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office when young and coupled with an over-active imagination and a love of Spy novels and all things Espionage, I would be daft not to use this knowledge in some of my stories. The Music business in Hollywood and London and around the world in general is exciting, full of over the top and larger than life characters and spilling over with lust, greed; high-powered individuals whose reach extends further than the business of selling music. Where there is money and power there is always crime of one sort or another and the Music business is littered with shady characters; a feast for someone like me. All names changed of course as I cannot afford to be sued or wake up to find a horse’s head in my bed or to take a swim wearing concrete boots!

Lynda: I would love to know more about Espionage… I’ll go make the tea..!!

afternoontea460

Lynda: Now we’ve had tea. (some two hours later, Jane has so many stories, I could seriously listen all day.

seasons3

Lynda: Could I ask, when is your favourite time of year to write?

Jane Risdon: I don’t think I have one, although I do love the summer when the mornings are light from very early on and I can sit and write without distractions. But then, I also love the cold winter months when I can shut the world out, have a lovely cup of tea beside me and possibly a good thriller on the TV or radio for background noise as I write.

decisions
Lynda: I’ll make another drink. do you prefer biscuits of Chocolate?

Jane Risdon: Oh dear, I fear I am going to be a pain again and say neither. Well, unless they are savoury biscuits along with a strong Stilton cheese. When I write I like to nibble on liquorice, does that count?

Lynda: Ohhhhhhhh crakers and stilton… don’t mind if I do.!!

cnpmagnum-cheese-500x500
Lynda: What are you working on now?

Jane Risdon: I think you are going to regret asking this one Lynda. Where to start?

Okay, ‘Ms Birdsong Investigates’. She has taken me an age to write, family things have been getting in the way and then I fell down the stairs and injured myself so typing is difficult and this has all messed with my timeline regarding my writing, especially Ms. B.
Having had to leave her alone for a while – I wanted to think about her some more and change lots of things – I came back to her this year and found that my writing has improved since I left her alone. So I am writing parts again, messing around with the story in general and generally giving her a good old spring clean. Whilst doing this I have managed to write two stand-alone Ms B. stories (novels) which I think will be part of a series involving her. So now I have Mrs. Birdsong Investigates – my first Ms B. novel, then there is ‘Murder at the Observatory,’ and recently ‘The Safe House’. I hope to publish these this year.
I am working on various projects for Charity anthologies – I am proud to have had stories included in three anthologies to date: In A Word: Murder, I Am Woman Vol. 1 and Telling Tales. Another anthology is on the cards for Christmas this year. The short story I have written for this is so far is called ‘The Stalker,’ and I am working on another story which for the moment is called ‘Dying to Meet You’.
In addition to the short stories and flash fiction I often write – and really enjoy – I am working on a series of what I call Observational Humour short stories, ‘God’s Waiting Room,’ which is based on my experiences staying in a rural village and having to take the bus into town. The same characters often waited for the bus with me and gave me such an entertaining time with their stories and experiences during the War and other events in their lives….I had to write about them.
My life and times in Music have inspired my novel – called ‘La La Land,’ for now – it features two rock musicians from England auditioning for a Super Star’s touring band in Hollywood and what happens to them; all based on fact. It is about half way completed.
Having researched Family History for almost four decades I’ve written a novel called ‘It’s a Long Way to Tipperary,’ about an English family discovering Southern Irish relations and their visit to meet them for the first time, and what happens; highlighting the differences between the English and the Irish. This is almost completed.
I have been working on a novel set in Bollywood, the Mumbai movie business, featuring two Englishmen stranded in the city after the Mumbai bombings and their encounter with the underworld there. This is about a quarter of the way through.
So you see I am busy and although it must seem chaotic going from one book to another, I find it stops me getting bored or too bogged down. I relate the process to writing and recording songs in that it is all done in stages and sometimes one part is started but cannot be completed until another part is worked upon, and I guess it is a habit I’ve got myself into. It works for me. Whether any of my work is worth the effort will only become apparent if/when people buy my books.

plates

Lynda: That’s amazing Jane, I find that I can only work on one project at a time. So credit where credit is due. Keep spinning those plates..!!

ok so what's next

Lynda: Could I ask, other than having major operations. What’s happening next?

Jane Risdon: Throughout the summer of 2014 I’ve been submitting to Publishers, for the first time, just testing the water and gaining experience in just how to go about it all. I didn’t submit any of my novels (still WIP anyway) but put together a collection of my Short Stories (mainly crime/mystery) as a collection which I thought some might be interested in. In fact, some publisher websites asked specifically for collections and detailed genre, word count and so forth, but when I submitted I was told many don’t accept one single author’s collections as they are not always easy to sell, and that I should submit just the one story of a given length. I know, why ask for them and then say they don’t publish them any longer!
I am still waiting to hear back from several who are not giving decisions until early October, but I was also asked to send more stories to various companies – which I did – who were interested in publishing novelettes and novellas from 3,000-10,000 words. I await the outcome with baited breath. However, I did receive an offer from one company which turned out to be a Vanity Publisher, which I passed on. Last year I had an offer from a publisher where a friend had put a good word in for me – but I didn’t give them a decision due to the amount of work and time required as I was not able to undertake such a mammoth task due to my physical condition at that time. I believe the door is still open so when I complete Ms Birdsong Investigates, and if I am in need of another publisher by then, I shall consider them.
In July I submitted to Accent Press Ltd and after two months got a reply. They don’t publish single author collections but wanted to know if I’d be interested in submitting a short story towards their Halloween anthology, and also one for their Christmas anthology. I said I’d give it a go – having looked them up I thought they had a good track record and I know some of the authors they publish.
I’ve not really written a Ghost story before – unless you count The Ghost in the Privy – which is part of a series I’ve been writing, for a while, called God’s Waiting Room. This story is a comedy, and has been published in Telling Tales, an anthology published by Moonworks in 2012. I didn’t think it suited this publisher’s requirements, so I sat down and contemplated the blank screen for a while and then out popped The Haunting of Anne Chambers.
Last year I got really good feed-back from readers and writers about my two flash fiction pieces called The Secret of Willow Cottage: the Tale of the Reluctant Bride, and the prequel called The Secret of Willow Cottage: The Tale of the Jilted Lover, which is a love story-cum-pirate story. My inspiration came from my research into Piracy for these stories. Hence, The Haunting of Anne Chambers.
I was offered a contract by Accent Press Ltd for my story with options on my others and it has now been signed and editing is almost completed. The title of the collection it is included in is called Shiver and features best-selling authors: Andrea Frazer, Bill Kitson, Caroline Dunford, Christina Jones, Helena Fairfax, Tricia Maw, Marie Laval, Cara Cooper and David Rogers – and me!
Publication date is early October.
My Christmas story, awaiting a decision about being published in their anthology, is called Merry Christmas Everybody. It is based on a true story – my own experiences when working in a recording studio one Christmas soon after the death of a rock super-star. It was the time of the Lockerbie disaster over Scotland (plane blown up), and I shall never forget it. If anyone read and liked my stories, Dreamer or Hollywood Cover Up (In A Word: Murder anthology), they’ll know what to expect from this story – there are some four-letter words. If you’ve ever worked with rock bands or in the Movie/TV business in Los Angeles, you’ll be used to it. Be warned.

Lynda: How can people hear more about your work?

Jane Risdon: Links to SHIVER and where to buy it will be posted on my author blog http://wp.me/2dg55 when I know the publication date. It will also be posted on my Facebook authorpage http://www.facebook.com/JaneRisdon2 at that time.

Lynda: Thank you so much for joining me today. Really enjoyed chatting to you, and loved the tea, cakes, crackers and stilton. Shall we open the wine?

 

Interview with the gorgeous Author Suzan Collins

Last weekend was the Romantic Novelist Association 2014 Conference at the Harper Adams University in Telford.

harper adams university

I got to spend the weekend with around 250 like-minded authors, met many old friends and made lots of new ones. I heard aspiring talks, motivational techniques and most of all I got to speak to 3 amazing publishers. Two of which have asked to see the full manuscript of Broken Jigsaw…. I feel so very happy, especially as one of the publishers would be my number one choice. If I had to choose anyone to publish my book… it would be them. More revealed if they choose me to be one of their authors…. fingers crossed xxxx

Anyhow…. back to work this week and today I have the gorgeous Suzan Collins with me. We have champagne (like I didn’t drink enough at the weekend), strawberries and cream scones…!!

champagne-and-strawberriesscone

So… now we’re sitting comfortably, I’d like to introduce Suzan and ask her to tell you a little about herself….

suzan

Hi, I’m Suzan. I really enjoy writing and write both fiction and non-fiction. I’ve written romance and I’ve also written a variety of non-fiction books for staff who work in social care. Along with being an author, I am also a consultant and trainer in health, social care and management.

Ok, Can I ask, what is your favourite memory of writing?

 Oooh, there are so very many!

Really… If there are so many, where or what do you draw your inspiration from?

Sometimes what I see will inspire me to write, for example, if I’m walking along the beach and the sun is shining I feel warm and may write about romance. If the sky is grey and it is windy I may write something chilling.
Other times I write to share information. I have written a selection of non-fiction books on: Safeguarding, Health and Safety, Effective Communication etc. I’ve recently written a Supervision Pack for staff working in the health and social care sector and this is with the publisher. If staff receives 1-1 regular supervision sessions where training needs are identified and concerns are shared then abuse of vulnerable people will be a thing of the past.

Wow, that sounds interesting. If you had to choose from any of your novels, which was your favourite character and which of your books was this from?

Mmmnnn… In my novel, On The Rails, Luca, with his smouldering Italian good looks, was my favourite character. Totally fictitious but I missed him when I finished writing the book. I am writing as sequel, Back On The Rails, and some of my readers have asked if Luca will be in this novel. Can’t say, sssh!

I didn’t have any favourite characters in ‘Beyond My Control: Why the Health and Social Care System Need Not Have Failed My Mother’ as this is a true account.

I’ve just finished writing a short book called Chatty Cat: First six months. A story about a rescue cat’s first six months with me. I wrote it to, not only tell people about Chatty, but also to help raise money for local cat rescue centres. I’m delighted to say, it was published on 3rd July 2014 and is now available on Amazon.co.uk

My favourite character in this is obviously Chatty.

chatty train

chatty book cover

Of course it would be… ha ha..!!  

Because we love romance, could you describe for me in two paragraphs your own perfect hero?

Imagine, George Clooney, that..!

HOLLYWOOD FILM FESTIVAL GEORGE CLOONEY

Oh yes, I can imagine George… who wouldn’t?

Would you ever, or have you ever used parts of your own life within your novels?

Yes, many of the train journeys in On The Rails were journeys I had done.

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Rails-Suzan-Collins-ebook/dp/B00AYKGX1G/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1406035122&sr=8-1&keywords=on+the+rails+suzan+collins

on the rails

When is your favourite time of the year to write?

I don’t have a particular time of the year to write, I write when I want to.

Thank you so much for coming… really enjoyed the scones and we’ll finish the champagne in the conservatory. Is there anything else you’d like to tell everyone while you are here?

Yes, can I plug my cause please?

Of course you can.

Thank you.

Improve standard of residential, domiciliary & hospital care of older vulnerable people. Pls sign & share http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/66065

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Chatty-Cat-The-First-Months/dp/1500369578/ref=sr_1_fkmr1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1406035167&sr=8-1-fkmr1&keywords=chatty+cat+susan+collins

chatty

Suzan Collins new book Chatty Cat: The first six months looks at: One woman. One cat. Two very different ways of thinking. Meet Chatty Cat and her human [hooman] as they get to know one another. Chatty Cat is a smart but scared cat who has been adopted and is getting used to her new home. Her hooman thinks she knows exactly what Chatty Cat is thinking and what she needs. Chatty Cat however has other ideas and with a mind of her own, her hooman begins to wonder who is actually in charge!

in-my-opinion

I love this book. I love all animals and to read Chatty Cat’s thoughts, loves and fears was very cleverly written.

I give it….

five stars

Look forward to seeing the next book in this series.!!

Interview with the gorgeous Suzan Collins

Last weekend was the Romantic Novelist Association 2014 Conference at the Harper Adams University in Telford.

harper adams university

I got to spend the weekend with around 250 like-minded authors, met many old friends and made lots of new ones. I heard aspiring talks, motivational techniques and most of all I got to speak to 3 amazing publishers. Two of which have asked to see the full manuscript of Broken Jigsaw…. I feel so very happy, especially as one of the publishers would be my number one choice. If I had to choose anyone to publish my book… it would be them. More revealed if they choose me to be one of their authors…. fingers crossed xxxx

Anyhow…. back to work this week and today I have the gorgeous Suzan Collins with me. We have champagne (like I didn’t drink enough at the weekend), strawberries and cream scones…!!

champagne-and-strawberriesscone

So… now we’re sitting comfortably, I’d like to introduce Suzan and ask her to tell you a little about herself….

suzan

Hi, I’m Suzan. I really enjoy writing and write both fiction and non-fiction. I’ve written romance and I’ve also written a variety of non-fiction books for staff who work in social care. Along with being an author, I am also a consultant and trainer in health, social care and management.

Ok, Can I ask, what is your favourite memory of writing?

 Oooh, there are so very many!

Really… If there are so many, where or what do you draw your inspiration from?

Sometimes what I see will inspire me to write, for example, if I’m walking along the beach and the sun is shining I feel warm and may write about romance. If the sky is grey and it is windy I may write something chilling.
Other times I write to share information. I have written a selection of non-fiction books on: Safeguarding, Health and Safety, Effective Communication etc. I’ve recently written a Supervision Pack for staff working in the health and social care sector and this is with the publisher. If staff receives 1-1 regular supervision sessions where training needs are identified and concerns are shared then abuse of vulnerable people will be a thing of the past.

Wow, that sounds interesting. If you had to choose from any of your novels, which was your favourite character and which of your books was this from?

Mmmnnn… In my novel, On The Rails, Luca, with his smouldering Italian good looks, was my favourite character. Totally fictitious but I missed him when I finished writing the book. I am writing as sequel, Back On The Rails, and some of my readers have asked if Luca will be in this novel. Can’t say, sssh!

I didn’t have any favourite characters in ‘Beyond My Control: Why the Health and Social Care System Need Not Have Failed My Mother’ as this is a true account.

I’ve just finished writing a short book called Chatty Cat: First six months. A story about a rescue cat’s first six months with me. I wrote it to, not only tell people about Chatty, but also to help raise money for local cat rescue centres. I’m delighted to say, it was published on 3rd July 2014 and is now available on Amazon.co.uk

My favourite character in this is obviously Chatty.

chatty train

chatty book cover

Of course it would be… ha ha..!!  

Because we love romance, could you describe for me in two paragraphs your own perfect hero?

Imagine, George Clooney, that..!

HOLLYWOOD FILM FESTIVAL GEORGE CLOONEY

Oh yes, I can imagine George… who wouldn’t?

Would you ever, or have you ever used parts of your own life within your novels?

Yes, many of the train journeys in On The Rails were journeys I had done.

on the rails

When is your favourite time of the year to write?

I don’t have a particular time of the year to write, I write when I want to.

Thank you so much for coming… really enjoyed the scones and we’ll finish the champagne in the conservatory. Is there anything else you’d like to tell everyone while you are here?

Yes, can I plug my cause please?

Of course you can.

Thank you.

Improve standard of residential, domiciliary & hospital care of older vulnerable people. Pls sign & share http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/66065

chatty

Suzan Collins new book Chatty Cat: The first six months looks at: One woman. One cat. Two very different ways of thinking. Meet Chatty Cat and her human [hooman] as they get to know one another. Chatty Cat is a smart but scared cat who has been adopted and is getting used to her new home. Her hooman thinks she knows exactly what Chatty Cat is thinking and what she needs. Chatty Cat however has other ideas and with a mind of her own, her hooman begins to wonder who is actually in charge!

in-my-opinion

I love this book. I love all animals and to read Chatty Cat’s thoughts, loves and fears was very cleverly written.

I give it….

five stars

Look forward to seeing the next book in this series.!!

Guest Interview With Jane Lovering

Good Morning.

Today I’m really excited to have the amazing Jane Lovering with me.

She’s popped over to visit and even though I’ve hid the hob nobs and the wine, she still agreed to come and answer a few questions for me.

jane

But first…. A little about Jane

Jane lives in North Yorkshire with her five children, three cats, two dogs, four chickens and an ever-increasing number of bacteria.  Jane believes housework happens to other people, and writes romantic comedy novels in a frantic attempt to avoid being asked to ever do any.  She works by day in a local school, writes in the evenings and never watches television, unless it’s Doctor Who or anything featuring Tony Robinson.  She has five novels  published by Choc Lit Publishing, her most recent being Falling Apart.

Her novel ‘Please Don’t Stop the Music’ was voted Romantic Comedy of the Year and overall Romantic Novel of the Year for 2012, which enable Jane to give a series of rambling speeches which featured incontinence wear far more frequently than anyone liked.

www.janelovering.co.uk

  1. What is your favourite memory of writing?

Probably would have to be winning the Romantic Novel of the Year in 2012, with Please Don’t Stop the Music.  I’ve probably got lots of other things writing related that I should remember, but I plead age and alcohol

please don't stop the music

2. Where / what do you draw your inspiration from?

I really have no idea.  Things just sort of leap into my head.  I’ll be listening to a piece of music or reading a travel brochure (I read a lot of travel brochures, I’ve no idea why, I haven’t been on holiday since 2010 and will probably never go anywhere outside Yorkshire ever again, but the pictures are nice) and suddenly there will be a thought or a sentence or a title that pops up.  Sometimes I even remember to write it down before it evaporates.

3. From any of your novels, which was your favourite character? Which of your books was this from?

Oh, that’s like asking which of my children is my favourite!  How can I possibly choose?  Although, in books (doesn’t work with children) the most recent is often the most memorable, so maybe I could say Daniel Bekenner, the Editor-From-Hell in the book I’ve just finished writing.  He dresses all in black, wears a big swirly coat and has a cool tattoo, and I’m really rather fond of him.  He’s in I Don’t Want to Talk About It, for future reference…

4. Describe in two paragraphs your own petfect hero. 

Two paragraphs is an awful lot of words to say, cool, funny, emotionally literate, intelligent, not afraid of emotional displays.  And/or Tony Robinson.

tony-robinson

5. Would you ever, or have you ever used parts of your own life within your novels?

Now, if I say ‘yes’ everyone is going to wonder which parts, possibly to a prurient and intrusive degree, so I’ll just say no.  Saves a lot of bother all round.

6. When is your favourite time of the year to write?

In winter my house is very, very cold (we have to defrost the cat), and the combination of short days and achingly cold hands doesn’t make for much inspiration.  If I was allowed to hibernate, I would.  In summer I can write in the holidays as well, so it’s both more productive and more pleasant.  Plus..you know, ice cream…

7. Just for fun…. Biscuits or Chocolate..??

Can I say both..?

 

8.  What are you currently working on. ? Anything new in the pipeline?

Funny you should ask… I’ve just completed the above mentioned I Don’t Want to Talk About It, I’m about to start a new contemp called Crush, I’m working on a novella called Corinthia and the Bear and I’ve got another release this year from Choc Lit, in December – a contemporary called How I Wonder What You Are…

So, short answer, yes.

9. You’ve just released Falling Apart. Tell us a little about it 

Falling Apart is a sequel to Vampire State of Mind, it’s about vampires and humans co-existing in Britain.  Look, to save time, here’s the blurb…

‘In the mean streets of York, the stakes just got higher – and even pointier.

Jessica Grant liaises with Otherworlders for York Council so she knows that falling in love with a vampire takes a leap of faith. But her lover Sil, the City Vampire in charge of Otherworld York, he wouldn’t run out on her, would he? He wouldn’t let his demon get the better of him. Or would he?

Sil knows there’s a reason for his bad haircut, worse clothes and the trail of bleeding humans in his wake. If only he could remember exactly what he did before someone finds him and shoots him on sight.

With her loyalties already questioned for defending zombies, the Otherworlders no one cares about, Jess must choose which side she’s on, either help her lover or turn him in. Human or Other? Whatever she decides, there’s a high price to pay – and someone to lose.’

in-my-opinion

Finally a really great book about vampires. I loved Vampire State of Mind which was Jane’s first book in this series, but can I say Falling Apart really lives up to my much anticipated expectations.

falling apart

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Falling-Apart-York-Vampire-Series/dp/1781891133/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1402911625&sr=8-1&keywords=falling+apart

This is not just a book about Vampires. Its a book about relationships, romance and humour.

Jess and the very sexy Sil do their best to overcome their differences and between them they prove that you can conquer the world, even if you are very different people…. or a person and a otherworld person.

five stars

I give it 5 stars… as i would any of Jane’s books. Love, love, love them…. In fact… you should read them all.

If you are about to download Falling Apart… Download Vampire State of mind too and read this first. You won’t be disappointed.

whos-next-crop

Next week we have the lovely Elaine Everest… I can’t wait x