I’m delighted to be welcoming Linda Mitchelmore to Jera’s Jamboree today.
Having reviewed To Turn Full Circle in June 2012 (you can read my review here) and fortunate to interview lead character Emma (you can read the interview here), I was delighted to be given the opportunity to interview Linda herself!
What was the idea/inspiration for your latest novel, Emma?
When I finished writing TO TURN FULL CIRCLE, I knew I didn’t want Emma’s story to end there. She was very young still – just eighteen years old – when that book ended and I wanted to know how she developed as a woman, and I thought my readers would want to know that, too. It was never my intention to write a trilogy, but once I started Emma’s story the characters began to tell their own tales – the plot and the sub-plots. EMMA: There’s No Turning Back is the sequel to TO TURN FULL CIRCLE and the second in my trilogy. And in this book I didn’t want Emma to move away from her coastal location just yet ….
Did you travel to any places? Undergo any new experiences?
I have Emma making a buche de noel in this book. I chose a French dessert because Emma’s father, Guillaume, was French – well, a Breton, but he taught Emma to speak and read and write French. But I had never made a buche de noel in my life so I thought I better had for research purposes. The first was a total disaster, and so was the second and … So I had Emma perfecting this dessert and Seth eating her efforts until, of course, she perfected it!
If you could choose to be one of your characters in your book/books which would you be? and why?
Ruby Chubb. Ruby is so good-humoured and such a loyal friend. She doesn’t have a jealous bone in her body, not even when Emma goes up in the world and she remains in her lowly job.
Do you have a most creative time of day?
I am at my most creative early in the morning. I sleep well (for which I am very grateful) and often wake with future scenes playing in my head and itching to get them written down before I forget. I would be tapping away at the keyboard at 6 a.m. if I could but I share my home with my husband and he is so not an early bird. But that said, I am usually working by 8 a.m. having had breakfast, showered and dressed. I am also irritatingly cheerful in the mornings as those who have shared hotel rooms with me will testify!
Are you a pantster or a plotter?
I am most definitely a pantster. That said, I do have a basic plot in my head when I start writing and know what my heroine’s problem is, and what I want the outcome to be by the time I get to the last chapter. Other characters come in and out of the story and the ones I like (and also some I hate) stay for the duration and join our journey – but it is an adventure, for my heroine and for me.
Have you joined any writing groups?
Yes, I belong to Brixham Writers. We are a very small group – just a dozen of us – and most of us are published in some way, be that short stories, novels, journalism, poetry, or academic writing. We meet weekly and can either read from work-in-progress or do our ‘homework’ which is set at the end of the previous meeting. I’ve sold more than a few ‘homework theme’ short stories so well worth turning out on a cold, wet, winter afternoon to attend meetings, I’d say. And now, with the advent of Facebook and Twitter the social networking we provide for one another is invaluable. Thank you girls and boys.
Have you done any creative writing/writing courses that you would recommend to others?
I have, and I would most certainly recommend it. I took a postal, short story, writing course with Writing Magazine, and went on from that to do their novel-writing course, too. I had the same tutor for both and I have much for which to thank her. So, thank you, Bella Stella, you know who you are and I wouldn’t be where I am today without you.
Do you make use of local resources for promoting your book?
I am very fortunate here in Paignton to have an award-winning independent bookshop, the Torbay Bookshop, which is very supportive of writers in general and local writers in particular. They host ‘launch evenings’ for local writers, and also Saturday booksignings. For EMMA I have had two events with them, Thursday 23rd January 6- 7.30 p.m, and Saturday, 25th January 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. And now Brixham, too, has a bookshop, Another Chapter, who have hosted a booksigning for me on Saturday, 11th Janaury 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. Over the course of my writing career I have developed working relationships with the local press – The Western Morning News and the Herald Express – and both have sent journalists to interview me and published full page features on me and my writing. We also have Radio Devon and Palm Radio who give out details of my booksignings. I also donate a book or two to local libraries and they have organised events for me at which I have given short talks to the paying public – scary, but good.
Finally Linda, what has been the best part of your writing journey so far?
The places I’ve been and the people I’ve met. Through a short story I had published in Writing Magazine a friend with whom I’d lost touch contacted me and we are now in daily e.mail contact which is wonderful. I’ve been on two writing holidays – one to Sarteano in Italy, and one to Corfu. I learned so much on both of them and am still in touch with some of the people I met there. Through being a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association – firstly on their New Writers’ Scheme, and now as a full member – I have met very well-known names who have all been very inspirational and encouraging to me. And I have met some lovely yet-to-be-published people who are full of that eagerness to see their work in print as I once was – and still am, it has to be said!
Thank you Linda!
I can’t wait to read Emma and find out how she matures!
Life hasn’t always been kind to Emma Le Goff. She has had her fair share of hardship and now finally, her life appears to be looking up. She and her childhood sweetheart, Seth Jago, are set to marry and both believe that an idyllic existence, free from heartache, awaits them.
However, when they discover that the past is more difficult to forget than they could have ever imagined, Emma continues to be haunted by the mysterious circumstances surrounding her family, and Seth is hounded by a jealous ex-lover set on revenge.
Seth plans for their escape to Canada, but when the charismatic Matthew Caunter returns to Devon, Emma finds herself uncertain of whether a move to Canada is really what she wants …
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