A while back I received an email asking me if I would like to review a book or do an author interview by a very exciting new South African author. I am all for author interviews and I know our readers enjoy them, but it wasn’t exactly my genre of book and I wasn’t sure if it was the best fit. It could have gone either way at this stage… you know how I want to bring “the best of the rest” to our readers. In fact, I kind of put off reading the book – but to be fair I thought I would at least read the first couple of chapters and then say I had tried to read it and failed. Well, I started on a cold Saturday morning, under the duvet and thought I would set a time limit, the length of a load of laundry, and go… the kids made their own lunch. I surfaced at dinner time and suggested that the father person make that meal. Let’s just say, I did not put it down. I totally escaped for an entire day… the consequences of mountains of dishes and soggy laundry were well worth it!!! If you are looking for a day off or a weekend away and there isn’t one on the cards for you right now…then here is a great escape.
Se7en+1 Interview Questions
- Tell us a bit about yourself: Describe your perfect day.
- What was your biggest influence in becoming a writer? When did you know that you had a book inside you?
- What are your favourite reads? Do you have an all time favourite book?
- Tell us about your work process. How do you find the time to put pen to paper? Are you compelled to write, extremely disciplined or do you squeeze a moment here and there.
- How do you keep track of your story and ideas: Are you a pen and paper kind of writer or a “as long as I have my keyboard” kind of writer? A notebook, a whiteboard, copious post-it-notes… in your head?
- Your books read like an action packed, suspense filled adrenaline rush of a movie…give us a little background, did something spark this book or was it flying about your head for years?
- Is there something encouraging you would like to say to all those folk out there that think they might have a book within them?
I love to laugh, and I love spending time with my family. My husband works long hours, so Sunday’s are my most favourite day of the week because we are all together and generally do something fun with the children. Obviously the perfect day is one in which there are no tears and no grumbles from the little ones, which is very rare!
I wrote children’s books in primary school and I started a few novels in my early twenties which will thankfully never see the light of day! I always knew I would write a book ‘one day’, but only when I reached my thirties did I feel that my writing had matured enough to be taken seriously. The funny thing is after the first book was completed, it was as if a floodgate had opened…now I have so many book ideas it’s hard to keep up!
I have to admit I am a big Twilight fan and I adored Harry Potter. I read so much, though, that I couldn’t narrow it down to just one book. I do love to share ‘book love’ and if I find a read that I really enjoy, I will shout it out to all of my reading friends.
I am not disciplined, but I am compelled to write. When you love to do something, it isn’t hard to sit down and do it. I try to get as much done in the mornings as possible and treat it like a “job” with set hours, but inevitably I find myself squeezing in a moment here and there whenever I can.
I’m definitely a “as long as I have my laptop” kind of writer. I plot my ideas and then type above, deleting as I flesh out the story and cover that particular part of the plot. I do keep a separate document to record my characters – what they look like, their personality traits, etc – because it is easier for referencing.
With The Legacy I was reading a lot of dystopian fiction beforehand and I was a bit disappointed that it is always the most unexceptional, ordinary people who survived. I wanted The Legacy to break that mould and so I gave my characters the skills and the training to not only survive, but excel, in the direst of circumstances. My writing style is fast-paced, and I struggle with “filler” so the plot does tend to move along fairly quickly. I like that it keeps the reader gripped and wanting to read more.
And the se7en+1th question:
Yes: Write it. Don’t think any further than that, it will overwhelm you. If you have a book inside you, it will burn a hole in your head until you put it down on paper. Write it, for yourself, first and foremost and then share it with the world.
This book is set in a very bleak post-nuclear North America, World War III has been and gone and you find yourself in a dystopian United States in the not too distant future. And that sounds so like a book that wouldn’t catch my attention… beware. This book literally raises your pulse… It is the characters that grip you, you wish you could meet them… you have to know what happens next. The main character is Rebecca, and she gives up everything that she loves to be the presidents wife. She is one fiery gal with inner strength and fortitude, she is single-minded and tenacious. You feel her pain, and you are on her quest with her, somehow you want more for her. Of course there is a love story kindling away, the childhood sweetheart, and the strong interloper… it is really a side-plot off the main story and not the focus at all. In fact if you are looking for romance you are unlikely to find it here. This book is all about action and lots of it. The author has cleverly told the story from every side, you find yourself sympathising with almost everyone. Of course it is a fight against good and bad, but typically post-modern – the good are also bad and the bad are also good and you find yourself changing allegiance more than a few times. But there can really only be one ultimate winner, or that’s what we are led to believe. As I said at the start of this post… unputdownable… and worse, it ends as an absolute cliff hanger… no nicely resolved happy endings here… you have to read on.
The good news is that book 2 in the trilogy is readily available… and there is more of Rebecca, the ultimate weapon… she is still fighting for all that is good… only there is a new enemy. I decided to be a little more disciplined when reading this one and only started reading after the kids were in bed… let’s just say the kids woke up to a pile of dirty dishes and a mother who had conquered an all-nighter. If you are looking for a nice relaxing bed-time read, you are in quite the wrong place. Dare I say, more gripping than the first, the dramatic ins and outs and the surprising twists and turns, will keep even the most sleep deprived mothers amongst us wide awake. These books are a total escape and a fabulous read. You can read more about the books over here at their website.
Thank you so much to Tracey at Tracey McDonald Publishers and i love books for providing the e-books for review and connecting us for the author interview. And a huge thank you to Melissa Delport for the exciting reads and answering our interview questions. I would like to declare that we were provided with the books for review purposes and we were not paid for the review and all opinions expressed in the review were, as usual, entirely our own.