Why do you write?
I write to deal with an overactive imagination, and as a refuge away from the mundane and myself. As I always feel very relaxed after a writing session, I view this activity as therapy.
Have you always enjoyed writing?
Although I have dabbled with creative writing in the past, having penned poetry in my early twenties, I only started writing creatively a few years ago. As a professional dancer over many years, it necessitated that I compose programme notes for the many shows I created. I also wrote numerous grant applications. A form of writing I deplore, due to the style of language one requires to adopt in order to be comply with policy makers. This time consuming, and largely thankless task, actually acted as a deterrent to writing as a past time.
What motivates you to write?
A desire to see how things will unfold in the story as the work progresses, the more familiar I become with my characters, the more I look forward to visiting their world.
What writing are you most proud of?
There is a scene in The House, involving a fortune teller who is called upon in the hope that insight into the origins of, the all too mysterious time traveller, may be gained. I then created some scenes that came to the clairvoyant through her crystal ball, thereby adding another dimension to the plot. Speaking in the language of a fortune teller was most enjoyable as it gave me much licence to speak in metaphors and symbols, whilst presenting the reader with genuine clues.
What books did you love growing up?
My parents being Italian did not read to me, fortunately this did not deter me from finding a passion in reading from a very early age. My early years were devoted to Enid Blyton, of whom I read absolutely everything. This was followed by Alice in Wonderland and by the time I was ten, I encountered C.S Lewis and read all the Narnia series voraciously, not dissimilar to the fervour the Harry Potter books generated in recent times. My primary school was equipped with a comprehensive library, so I was able to borrow each book in succession, with no wait, which was good, as I still recall quite vividly the impatience I felt awaiting the next instalment.
As a teenager I developed a taste for crime mysteries so I read everything the library had to offer, Agatha Christie, James Hadley Chase etc. Then it was off to the adult reads Harrold Robbins, Jacqueline Sussan, Mitchener, there are too many to mention as I can honestly say that since the age of 7, I have never been without a book. The classics began when I was about 18. The Brontes, Austen, Radcliffe, Dickens, Thackeray, Hardy, George Eliot,Wilkie Collins the list goes on. By my mid 30’s I discovered the French – Balzac, Stendhal, Zola, Hugo, Maupausant. Then back to England, with Somerset Maughan, Huxley, D H Lawrence, then to Russia, with Turgeniev, Dostoevsky, Tolstoy. Then there was Shakespeare which led me to read Homer, Ovid and the Greek myths. There are so many more. Sadly I have not kept a running list of books I have read, but there have been thousands I am sure.
Who is your favorite author?
This is a very difficult one to answer as there are many I simply adore and respect. But I think for now I will say George Eliot. Next time it could very well be Balzac. There are too many in reality, as they wrote extremely fine books back then.
What book genre of books do you adore?
Classical literature - gothic, romance, political, historical fiction.
What book should everybody read at least once?
Les Miserable by Victor Hugo
Is there any books you really don’t enjoy?
Books that use economical simplified language.
How did you develop your writing?
I write daily. I let it flow, in an improvised manner,(even though the narrative is still the driver)I started this way and am continuing to adopt this method. When I am lacking inspiration, I let my left brain take over and deal with the text pragmatically, through cleaning up the grammar, inconsistencies etc.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
Nature - the sea in particular, then there is painting, music, dance, poetry, film, and literature of course. Also travelling to Europe, the only place on earth where art and beauty still reigns supreme.
What is hardest – getting published, writing or marketing?
I am self published, so that is not difficult. Writing is extremely enjoyable, so I don’t find that too hard. My individual approach renders my work slightly idiosyncratic, therefore the final product is potentially not something that will appeal to the mainstream. This makes earning money and marketing the most difficult.
By far, marketing is the most laborious and costly. What makes it particularly difficult is, in knowing whether there are sales from any one promotion. It is quite a silent process, in that, I don’t even know if anybody has purchased a book until after each quarter, and even then, I have no idea what source brought them to my book.
The House is an adult fairy tale rich in mystery and intrigue.
Here is a tale of a woman so absorbed with historical novels that her own reality ceases to offer any hope of romance and beauty.
Until one day this dreamy idealist finds herself in a mysterious forest. How she arrived there is unknown. Soon she encounters a dilapidated house, within whose ancient walls magical rooms that transport to parallel worlds lie in wait. There she is transmigrated to 18th century England, where our heroine interacts with an odd mix of characters whose dysfunctional lives become immediately apparent.
Her first tribulation involves a nefarious lord, an archetype of the monstrous characters one encounters in fairy tales. The ramification from this confrontation sets the tone for the narrative.
A magic portal finally enables escape from the austere Georgian dwelling. She is then spirited back to the enigmatic house, and a journey to Regency London follows, where a large cast of eccentric identities present themselves.
Late one night, following a long stay in Florence, a young, heart-broken poet arrives. His introduction to the beautiful time traveller offers promise of restoration and love. But there are several more obstacles ahead before her destiny in this curious adventure is made apparent.
In the end an unexpected twist is revealed. But like all good fairy tales, this surprising conclusion is pleasing, even though the means of getting there are dark, and at times sinister.
Genre - Historical, Fantasy, Romance
Rating - PG-16
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