The Next Big Thing

25 Dec

One of my favourite BSB writers and who also has a great sense of humour, Cari Hunter (Desolation Point and Snowbound) has tagged me because I’m an easy victim for the 27th week of The Next Big Thing Blog Hop. The basic idea is to hop from blog to blog to discover exciting books. Every week an author answers the same ten questions, then lists the author who will answer the questions on their blogs the following week.

I’m new to this whole writing thing, so please be gentle with me. Just two months ago, I signed a contract with Bold Strokes Books to publish my very first LGBT manuscript.

So, here I go…

What is the working title of your book?

At the moment, the working title of my book is Scars (this is provisional). It may change to something else at a later date.

Where did the idea come from for the book?

The idea originally came to the fifteen year old version of me, while I was sat in a caravan in France, on holiday. As I went to a Catholic school, I originally wrote it as a heterosexual short story for my GCSE English coursework. I was awarded an A- for it, (it would’ve been an A, but my spelling let me down).

Over the years I attempted numerous times to re-write it as a full length story, but it never seemed to work out. After graduating from University, I worked for a while with young people in care. One evening, I suddenly felt the urge to write and as soon as I used two female protagonists, the story just flowed.

What genre does your book fall under?  

Coming of age/ Romance for BSB Soliloquy readers.   

Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a movie rendition?

This question has had me stumped for a while and also made me feel both old and like a perv! Although I had a vague idea of the description of both leading ladies, I deliberately never went in to too much detail. As a reader I like to make my own mental image and I wanted my readers to also have that experience.

However, as my arm is being twisted… I’ve decided that I would cast Jennifer Lawrence as Jenny and Emily Browning as Nicola. My reasons for these choices are because of their acting skills…obviously.

What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?

Unofficially: While fleeing from her abuser, Nicola Jackson bumps into Jenny O’Connor and their unlikely friendship quickly develops into a blossoming romance— but when it comes down to a matter of life or death, are they both willing to face their fears?  
What is the longer synopsis of your book?

Unofficially, once again:

Would you face your biggest fear, to save the one you love?

Nicola Jackson escapes from her abuser, only to realize that she has no one to turn to and nowhere to go. In a twist of fate, she accidentally bumps into Jenny O’Connor, the most popular girl at school and they strike up an unlikely friendship. As their trust in one another develops, they share their darkest secrets and their relationship blossoms into a secret romance.

Jenny loves Nicola— but she is fearful that if their secret relationship is discovered, she might lose her family, friends and her seemingly perfect life.

Nicola confronts her abuser and blackmails him to leave for good, but things go terrifyingly wrong. Jenny is left with a life changing dilemma: should she face her fear and accept who she is, or let Nicola take the blame and pretend their relationship never happened.     

How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?

Approximately a year to write the first draft and when I was finished, I was the proud author of a 250,00 word manuscript. I had no idea what to do with it. Two years later: after one self editing course, the reading of numerous self editing books and three edited drafts later… here we are.

Who or What inspired you to write this book?

My amazing partner is an incredible inspiration for me. Without her love, support and the numerous cooked dinners and household chores, I would never have completed this manuscript. When no one believed that I could do it, myself included, she convinced me I could. I know it’s soppy, but it’s true.

 What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?

I thoroughly enjoyed writing this story and getting to know both Jenny and Nicola. There are slightly gritty and dark elements throughout the story, but also a fair bit of humour. Scars is essentially a story of discovering first love and all the positives and negatives that comes with it.

Next Wednesday I have chosen someone awesome, for the next big thing:

Another treat for you all, from the Best of British. Bold Strokes Books writer, Andrea Bramhall is going to talk about her debut novel Ladyfish. It’s a romantic intrigue and was published in October 2012. She’s also coming to the BSB UK Author Festival in June 2013, so you can meet her for yourself.

Check out Andrea’s blog here:

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