*** SPECIAL FEATURE - April'13 ***
So far on Special Feature April
1st April - Introducing Rebecca Emin
8th April - Book Review of New Beginnings
15th April - Book Review of A Knowing Look and Other Stories
22nd April - Book Review of When Dreams Come True
Rebecca Emin lives in Oxfordshire, England. Her debut novel, ‘New Beginnings,’ was published by Grimoire Books in January 2012. In May 2012, Rebecca self-published her second novel, ‘When Dreams Come True’, which is also for older children.
Rebecca enjoys writing flash fiction and short stories and has had several flash fiction stories included in fundraising anthologies. ‘A Knowing Look and Other Stories’ is a collection of Rebecca’s short stories which was published in November 2011.
Rebecca is also an author for Ether Books who publish short stories and essays to mobile devices via the Ether app.
Today I am ecstatic to have Rebecca Emin, my Special Feature Author for April on my blog for an interview. Welcome Ms.Emin, hope you are comfortable?
Thank you for featuring me here on your wonderful blog!
Pleasure's been mine. Would you like to tell the readers a bit about yourself?
I live near Oxford in England with my three children (10, 8 and 5) and as well as obviously looking after them, I write, and on the back of that also now help other authors to format their books. I also do some marketing for local companies and my one wish in life is that I could have a cloning machine so I could have double the time available!
How did you get into writing?
I have always loved writing, from as long as I can remember I have started writing novels and then given up (repeatedly) and as for the angst poetry; pages and pages of it. But I started writing seriously in 2009 when I was rapidly approaching 40 and decided that I wanted to get a book finished before that age.
What was your first piece? Yes, that scribbled thing in a notebook that’s somewhere in one of the boxes of memories?
The first thing I actually have on paper was a poem I wrote at the age of 11. It was pretty terrible!
Somehow I doubt that! Anything else in there that didn’t make it to the publishers’ desk?
I’ve been incredibly lucky actually as everything I’ve written since 2009 so far has been published, either by publishers, Ether Books who publish short stories via their app, or self-published.
Tell us a bit about your books…
New Beginnings was my first novel and I wrote it during NaNoWriMo 2009, which means I wrote over 50,000 words in a month. It was a real challenge as my children were very young then, only one of them in school, so I was finding writing time at 3 in the morning and all sorts of stolen moments. New Beginnings was also my ‘therapy book’ as I was bullied myself at school and the main character is in the book. Writing it all out really helped, and the fact that a lot of people have got in touch to say they can relate to the story makes me very glad I wrote it out.
When Dreams Come True was another NaNoWriMo attempt and although I didn’t make it to 50,000 words that year, and this book is considerably shorter than that, the story came into my head and I had to write it out. It’s quite a simple story but I am pleased with it.
A Knowing Look and Other Stories was my first self-publishing project. I only really put it together as an experiment to see if I could self-publish professionally and effectively, so I selected my favourite short stories from 2 years of writing and published them as a collection. The feedback has really surprised me and given me a lot more confidence in my writing.
I love your characters. They are so the ‘next door girl’ type. You know the ones that we personally know but hardly ever make an appearance in books, tv or movies? What made you keep them so true to life?
I grew up reading Enid Blyton and then Virginia Andrews, where the characters were “real” and there was a noticeable lack of fantasy in the books I enjoyed as a child and teen. It makes sense, I guess, that I would write in a similar way.
Are there recurring themes from your life when you revisit in fiction?
I do have very vivid dreams, and that was one of the things that inspired me to write When Dreams Come True.
What one quirk or characteristic of yours did you give your character? Who was it?
I was a tomboy when I was a child. I passed that on to Char lie in When Dreams Come True.
Self-publishing. Is it a flash in the pan or here to stay?
I think it’s a growing phenomena and will become more common-place as time goes on. I certainly hope so as part of my current business involves helping other self-publishing authors!
Okay, now for some fun questions:
If your book was to be made into a movie and you had free reign to choose the cast – who would you cast? That is a very good question and as both of my novels are for younger readers I would ask my daughter and some of her friends to pick the cast – as sadly the actors I know most about would be far too old to play the roles I have written. But of course, if it was New Beginnings, John Barrowman would have to play himself!
What was your most embarrassing moment in high school?
I had a lot of embarrassing moments in the first year of school, purely because I was bullied. As much as I hated it at the time, I wouldn’t change a thing because without that experience, I don’t think I could have written New Beginnings.
Pizza or Pasta? Pasta
Mocha or iced tea? Mocha
Hercule Poirot or Ms. Marple? Poirot
Drama or Romance? Bit of both!
Action or Suspense? Action
Is there a message you would like to send out to your readers?
Thank you, as ever, for reading! And also for the support and feedback over the past few years, I don’t think readers know how much it means to an author to get a message saying how a piece has touched them. Things like that are very special.
What's next? How do you see your writing career progressing?
The next novel I am working on has been brewing for a few months now and I will be starting to write it as soon as I find some time. It’s a novel for adults and will be very different to my previous writing. As well as that I am continuing to grow my business supporting other authors with their self-publishing projects.
This month we will have 5 lucky winners! Isn't that awesome news? Well, Ms.Emin has offered to giveaway 5 copies of her books to 5 winners. The Winners can choose between Paperback Copy of 'New Beginnings' or Digital Copy of either 'A Knowing Look' or 'When Dreams Come True'!
So what are you waiting for? Enter in the rafflecopter below for your chance at winning!