I’m delighted to be welcoming Sue Watson to Jera’s Jamboree today.
Sue was a journalist on women’s magazines and national newspapers before leaving it all behind for a career in TV. As a producer with the BBC she worked on garden makeovers, kitchen takeovers and daytime sofas – all the time making copious notes so that one day she might escape to the country and turn it all into a book.
Please summarise your latest book in 20 words or less.
Oh no… I can’t say ANYTHING in less than 20 words! Ok… here goes ‘Younger, Thinner, Blonder’ is about a TV celebrity who finds herself in a life she doesn’t want to live.
What was the idea/inspiration for your novel?
Having worked in television I would often see TV celebrities up close. I have always been fascinated by their lives. On the surface it’s all champagne receptions and fashion show invites, but the reality can be different. They might be spending an evening with supper in front of the TV like the rest of us. I wanted to explore the reality behind the facade… I also refuse to believe that anyone can have such a fabulous life and I’m very jealous and bitter!
If you could choose to be one of your characters in your book/books which would you be? and why?
I think I’d like to be Astrid, the cleaner in ‘Younger, Thinner, Blonder.’ She swears all the time, doesn’t vacuum, doesn’t give a damn and is delighted with the simplest things. There’s nothing that gives her more pleasure than a night in with a cup of lingonberry tea, a soused herring (she’s Swedish) and a TV boxed set of Doc Martin episodes. It also seems she’s eclipsing my heroine Tanya – everyone who’s read the book so far says Astrid’s the star. Well, Astrid is younger and blonder… not sure about the ‘thinner’ bit though.
Did you do any research for your book? What resources did you use?
‘Younger, Thinner, Blonder’ is set in Manchester and Nepal. I’m from Manchester, so it was a good excuse to go home to Mum’s cooking and do some ‘research.’ However, I have never been to Nepal (yes I know, clever to choose a place I’d never been right?) but it’s somewhere I’ve always wanted to visit. The Himalayas are symbolic, the setting is beautiful and human life there is in complete contrast to a western celebrity’s life filled with Prada and premieres.
What inspired you to write?
The need to pay the mortgage without having to go out on cold mornings. My thoughts and ideas have just always been in my head, percolating and waiting to be put into a book.
Do you have a most creative time of day?
Yes, about 10am, when my husband’s at work, my daughter’s at school and it’s all quiet – just me, the cats a cup of coffee and a blank page.
Who is your target audience? Children? YA? etc have you written for other genres or plan to in the future?
My target audience for the two published books are adult women of any age. I think if you struggle with love, marriage, kids, career, weight, cellulite, self-image or wrinkles, there’s something in my books for you.
What has been the best part of your writing journey so far?
Finally holding that book in my hot little hands and meeting some amazing people online. There are lots of brilliant online bloggers who work incredibly hard reading and reviewing then tweeting and FB ing about books and I am so, so lucky to know several… I can’t thank them/you enough.
Thank you for sharing with us today Sue.
Publisher: Rickshaw Publishing (8 Sep 2011)