Today, Jera’s Jamboree would like to welcome author Janice Horton as part of her book tour to launch Reaching for the Stars.
Janice is sharing with blog readers her preference for researching and how it applies to Reaching for the Stars.
The idea for Reaching for theStars was sparked by my fascination for the rock stars of the culinary world – celebrity chefs. I will also admit to having an insatiable appetite for cookery books and TV shows, from Hell’s Kitchen to Ready Steady Cook and everything in between. But when it came to writing about the high pressure world of a top chef, I had little experience as occasionally eating out in a nice restaurant doesn’t really count!
There are many writers who insist research should be done ‘as you go along’ so that you don’t get bogged down with it all but I don’t really hold with that idea at all. I believe a writer not only needs to know the specifics of what their characters do but also needs to ‘feel’ what it’s like to live in their world. I advocate doing extensive research beforehand.
So, for Reaching for the Stars, I immersed myself in Chef TV and read lots of incredibly interesting and insightful Chef Biographies. Even this however, wasn’t enough for me to truly empathise with my main characters, so I decided to contact some hot chefs and interview them personally.
Fabulous freelance chef Cathro Brook, who has travelled all over the world cooking for VIP’s and celebrities, told me the most amazing stories, from gun dogs getting onto the shooting party luncheon table to her oven gloves catching fire during a diplomatic dinner.
Top chef Colin Masson shared his afternoon coffee breaks with me on several occasions and told me lots of wonderful anecdotes about chefs, restaurants, and kitchens, giving me lots of ideas for my novel.
|Janice with top chef Colin Masson|
Chef Ian McAndrew, who has a gastronomic CV and cookbook backlist to make other chefs weep, was the youngest UK chef ever to have held a Michelin star. As the stars being ‘reached for’ in Reaching for the Stars are loosely based on the Michelin Star system (in my story I call them Golden Stars) Ian generously invited me to his the hotel to answer my research questions. He and his sous and commis also demonstrated what it takes to run an award winning kitchen in Dumfries and Galloway.
Interestingly, my novel approach to research attracted the attention of a local TV news crew and so on the day I visited Chef McAndrew, I had a camera crew in tow. The resulting short film can be viewed by clicking on the image below.
Reaching for the Stars is now available in e-book format at the special launch price of just 95p.
Janice Blogs at:www.janicehortonwriter.blogspot.com
Janice is a www.loveahappyending.com author
Follow her on Twitter @JaniceHorton
Facebook Author Page: http://on.fb.me/nbaWed
Janice is touring the following blogs for the launch of Reaching for the
About the author: Janice lives in Scotland and writes romantic novels with humour which are, for the most part, inspired by the beauty of the heather-filled glens around her country cottage. When Janice is not writing novels, she write lifestyle articles and has had work published in national and international magazines and regional newspapers. She edits The Review Chair for the innovative reader/writer website loveahappyending.com and is also the bestselling author of the humorous romance ‘Bagpipes & Bullshot’.