I’m delighted to welcome Elaine Roberts to my blog.
Hello Elaine – I’ve looked forward to hosting you on Arabella’s Blog and Chit-Chat and I’m eager to learn a little bit about you and your writing journey. But before we discover more about your latest release, The West End Girls, here are a few questions which will hopefully give your readers and followers an insight into some of the things that matter to you.
Elaine: Thank you for inviting me for a chat, I’m on my third cup of tea so I’m raring to go.
Arabella: We all love the creativity of writing – otherwise we wouldn’t spend hours at a keyboard pounding away in the hope someone will read and enjoy our novels. But what do you like most about our craft?
The editing and proofreading, the author/reader relationship, promotional book signings, or is there something else that has you hooked to the world of books?
Elaine: My first reaction is I love the author/reader relationship; it’s so fulfilling to read and hear the reader’s thoughts on your work. However, before the book is published I enjoy getting the story down on paper without worrying about shaping it into a novel. I write family sagas, which are set in World War One and sometimes no matter how much I plan the story changes. My latest novel, The West End Girls, which came out in June this year is an example of that. The character that started as a love interest became the baddie the more I wrote. I just couldn’t help myself!
Arabella: Who or what inspired you to write your latest release, The West End Girls?
Elaine: I found out recently that most of the Disney animation films have little salutes to previous films in them and that intrigued me, so I thought why not build my own community but not in an obvious way. My first three book series, The Foyles Bookshop Girls, are based in London’s West End so my characters are making cameo appearances in my latest series but you wouldn’t know unless you have read those books. I love going to London, especially to have a meal, take in a show and wander round the shops, not that I’ve managed to do any of that in the last few months. I think it’s safe to say my inspiration comes from family, friends, general conversations and my research.
Arabella: If you had a choice which would you pick and why?
3) Lily of the Valley
Arabella: Some authors cannot work without a business planner, others cannot write without an editing app… Are there any “essentials” you need to help your writing move forward?
Elaine: Conversation, and in the beginning I had my family doing role-play in my front room if I couldn’t get my head around a situation. The laughter helped to take away my stress at not being able to see the situation in my head. My most important piece of technology, with the obvious exception of my laptop, is my Voice Memo’s on my phone. I tend to record most scenes rather than make notes. I discovered quite early on that I’d make a note and then not understand what I was trying to say when I went back to read it. Recording it also gives me context for whatever the issue was. I also record the actual theme of my series and individual books and that keeps me focussed.
Arabella: If the person of your dreams, (husband/wife/partner/or superstar), were to take you out for the night, where would they take you and what would you do?
Elaine: My late husband was the man of my dreams and he would definitely take me to the theatre, I love a live performance. One of my favourite shows has to be Les Misérables, I have seen it seven times and I still cry at the same point, which is quite ridiculous when I know it’s coming.
Elaine: The first thing I’d say is don’t give up, I have several novels that will never see the light of day without an awful lot of editing. Also celebrate, not everyone can write 80,000 – 100,000 words so that’s a real achievement in itself. Learn your craft, attend classes of some sort or do an on-line course to help with the structure that goes with writing. Join organisations that offer critiques for the genre you’re writing in, for example The Romantic Novelist’s Association (RNA), The Society of Woman Writers and Journalists (SWWJ), and The Crime Writers Association (CWA). Many organisations have conferences where they do workshops and talks. The last thing I’d say is try writing different genres until you find the one that really fits you.
Thank you so much for inviting me, I enjoyed our chat and the interesting questions.
Arabella: It was lovely having you stop by on the blog for a chit-chat and a cuppa, Elaine. And thank you for sharing some of your writing secrets, especially the tip about using a phone’s Voice Memo. This will definitely have to be explored.
Wishing you all the best for your latest release - The West End Girls
About Elaine Roberts
|Elaine Roberts - Author|
Elaine Roberts had a dream to write for a living. She completed her first novel in her twenties and received her first very nice rejection. Life then got in the way again until she picked it up again in 2010. She joined a creative writing class, The Write Place, in 2012 and shortly afterwards had her first short story published. Elaine is very proud of The Foyles Bookshop Girls saga trilogy, which her late husband encouraged her to write. She, and her extended family, live in and around Dartford, Kent and her home is always busy with children, grandchildren, grand dogs and cats visiting.
You can find Elaine at:
Facebook Author Page: Elaine Roberts Facebook Author Page
Amazon: Author Page
Book Blurb: The West End Girls
Growing up on a farm in the country, Annie Cradwell has always dreamt of singing on stage. So when she hears her friend Joyce has a room to spare in London, she sets off with best friend Rose for an adventure beyond anything they could have imagined.
In London, Annie and Rose stumble into jobs at the Lyceum Theatre. Being a dresser to capricious star Kitty Smythe wasn't exactly what Annie had in mind. But then the musical director, Matthew Harris, offers her singing lessons. And Annie starts to wonder – could this be her chance? Or is it all too good to be true?
With the threat of war in the air, everything is uncertain. Is there a place for hopes and dreams when so much is at stake?
Annie, Rose and Joyce are three girls with very different dreams – but the same great friendship.
Amazon Link: The West End Girls