I picked up the Wizphone and caught her making MidSummer's Day bonnets for the upcoming village fete, allegedly. Here's what she had to say - a thoroughly entertaining interview.
Who Is Georgia Rose?
Georgia Rose is the person I hide behind when I write. This is the pen name I came up with when I decided I might try and self publish. I used a pen name for two reasons. Firstly my real name was already taken by an author who writes very different books to me. Secondly I could continue to write in secret as I didn’t want anyone locally to know what I was doing.
The real me lives a quiet life happier staying in than going out and I honestly believe I could become a recluse. However surrounded as I am by family it might just be my desire for the occasional moment of peace and quiet that makes me think so.
I’m 5’ 8” with short, dark brown, messy hair and glasses - something else I hide behind! I’m yet to come up with a photo I could use for my author stuff. I try to look okay then something happens between me and the camera and I come out looking like some grimacing gargoyle! I had a good photo taken once that I could use, I was 21 as young and fresh as a daisy, and it would be terribly misleading now
Whereabouts in the UK do you live? I hear you are a country girl?
I am a country girl Wiz, you’re right, but not as remote a one as I would like! I live in a small village near Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire so it’s kind of soft rural rather than the harsh rugged and bleak landscape found in some parts of our beautiful country that I love to visit.
However if I lived in one of those places I daresay I’d be complaining about the quality of broadband even more than I do about mine now - they’re good places to be if you don’t have to work.
|Ex-Basil Brush Comrade, Derek Fowlds - |
latterly pub landlord
Is your village like the one on Heartbeat, with that bloke off Basil Brush?
I’ve never actually seen Heartbeat, but I’ve been to the village that plays the part, just last year - I didn’t realise that until I was there! It was lovely and I was going to say it differs because we don’t have sheep wandering about our village but I’ve realised that’s a lie because sheep do get driven down our main road straight past my front door frequently - drives my dogs mad!
I’ve no idea what the Mr Stephen reference is about, is he in Heartbeat? Anyway I’m guessing you mean by like Heartbeat ‘stuck in a time warp’? Well the broadband is - it’s alright I won’t harp on about it anymore! Otherwise our village is small and pretty close knit. I’ve lived here for over 25 years, worked here for 17 of those and have been quite involved in the past (less so in the last couple of years) with stuff going on so I’m known to quite a few people around here plus I work for a lot of them.
Two colossal seventies icons
Tell us about your latest novel.
Well, my latest is also my first and it’s called ‘A Single Step’. The name comes from the quote “A journey of a thousand miles starts with...” and it’s the first book in The Grayson Trilogy.
It’s the story of Emma Grayson who has been through a terrible time and takes a job on the Melton Estate. It’s meant to be a new start for her but she’s in such a bad place she’s reluctant to move on and life turns out rather differently to how she was expecting.
There’s countryside, a dog, plenty of horses, and eventually love. However there’s more going on than first meets the eye on the estate and the suspense grows as Emma finds herself under threat and with her life in danger.
The story will continue in ‘Before the Dawn’ (out late summer 2014) and conclude in ‘Thicker than Water’.
In what genre do you write? Is this your “bread and butter” genre, or have you plans to diversify.
At the moment I write in romance suspense - I have to add that this was not planned. I wrote the book initially for me with no thought of genre or anything else so I then had to look round to see where it fitted in best. I already have plans for my fourth novel, no name yet but that would be in the same genre though a bit darker.
I guess then that this would be my “bread and butter” genre however judging by the responses from my beta readers to ‘Before the Dawn’ this week they clearly think I’m heading towards erotica, I’m blushing just at the thought of what I ‘m making them read so I need to do a bit of heavy editing as it appears I might have got carried away!
Before Georgia Rose we had "Riders"
Jilly Cooper's tale of
English countryside rumpy-pumpy - now ready for a backseat!
Do you write for the love or the money?
Ha ha ha Wiz, for the love of it of course! I haven’t found that there is any money in it as yet...
Who – or what – is your muse?
Interesting one... I wasn’t sure I had a muse but then thought back to how ‘A Single Step’ first came together in my mind and it started with this. A few years ago I was queuing to get into a car park at a three day event on a large estate and slowly passed a deserted cottage. It looked sad, unloved and not particularly attractive but I went into fantasy mode, imagining living there on this large estate and what life would be like.
I transplanted the cottage into woodland, added the stables (and horses) and built up my own little world around it. Fortunately I realised that whilst the little piece of heaven I’d created would keep me happy I’d need to add a lot more to it to satisfy anyone else but that’s where it all started, with the cottage.
How did the locals in your village take the news of an author in their midst?
With considerable surprise and quite a lot of excitement, though we can be an easily excitable bunch here in the country! It took many steps to reach the point where I felt like I could tell people and a couple of things happened one week which culminated in me deciding the time was right for me to ‘come out’.
Johnny Depp visits classic English countryside
ecclesiastical sit-com the Vicar of Dibley
We have a village email list which covers a good number of the population and is usually used for circulating Vegetable Olympic news and the like (yes really!) so I hijacked that, put together an email revealing my alter ego and all other salient information, hit send, picked up my keys and drove straight out of the village.
When I returned it was to a deluge of emails and calls and I found myself having to fend off excited people in the village shop.
The local book club have chosen my book to read and want me to come to a meeting to discuss it. I don’t know when yet, they may have changed their mind having read it - am I being paranoid? I’ve also been invited to the Women’s Group (I don’t know what they do, so it will be interesting to find out!) to talk to them but again the date is to be arranged - do you see where my paranoia is coming from?
I did turn down an invitation, surely made a little tongue in cheek, to speak at the Cricket Club Dinner - can you imagine?
The furore has died down now and a few reviews have been posted which is great. I get the occasional villager sidle up to me to let me know they’ve got my book or have started reading it and whilst thanking them I’m inwardly wishing they hadn’t told me because now I know and if they never speak to me about it again...well you know...
How have you found the Indie marketplace. Where can readers find you? What is your favourite network?
I have loved the indie marketplace. On the first of January this year I had absolutely nothing in place at all. I’d just been concentrating on getting the book together so uploaded that and then turned my mind to the marketing. I had never been on any sort of social media before so it has been a huge learning curve but it has been so much better than I ever thought it could be. The indie community is supportive, friendly and very, very generous. I’ve never experienced anything like that in my other working life.
Readers can find me via my website at www.georgiarosebooks.com where I’ve started a blog which they can follow should they wish to and the website also has links to my book and to where I am on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, Google + and AuthorsDB.
I’ve also just started a Grayson Trilogy page on FB for people to ‘like’ if they feel they want to.
I do little bits on all of these, probably nowhere near as much as I should but my favourite is Twitter.
Fearful of being portrayed as a bounder in your next book, the Chair of the Strangely Shaped Vegetable Club kidnaps you on the way to the Vicar’s Birthday Garden Party. You are gagged, bound and thrown in a dungeon of an abandoned castle near to where you live. Ever resourceful, you release yourself and find a sack. In the sack are two books, one CD and a DVD. What would they be?
I’m assuming that whilst I’m no longer bound I am still trapped in this dungeon Wiz, and my mind immediately jumps to ‘The Great Escape’ for the DVD because I’d need a refresher on some of the escape ideas but also just because I like the film. I’d like to think I’d be as cool as Hilts aka ‘The Cooler King’ as I sat in my dungeon.
In actual fact I know I’d be pacing and fretting and not cool at all. However if I was going to be there for a while I wouldn’t mind ‘Breaking Bad’ - can it be a box set? I haven’t seen it and I think I’m the only person who hasn’t but I always miss things and have to play catch up so this would be a good time to do that.
The CD is a trickier one. In an ideal world it would be a mixed CD made up of all the individual tracks I like because I rarely listen and like a whole CD however as the Chair of the Strangely Shaped Vegetable Club (and you have no idea how close you are to the reality of village life with that title!) is not likely to have been that thoughtful I would go with Bruce Springsteen’s ‘Live in New York City’ with the magnificent E Street Band.
It has the exquisite ‘If I Should Fall Behind’ and ‘The River’ on it though unbelievably ‘Thunder Road’ is missing - however once I got into Springsteen mode I could sing that to myself so all good!
The two books - that’s a difficult one. I’d go with ‘Long Walk to Freedom’ by Nelson Mandela and my second book would be a Jack Reacher novel by Lee Child, probably ‘The Affair’ as that is currently in the pile by my bed and I could then channel my inner Jack to help get me out of the mess I’m in.
Invite one author, one actor and one figure from history to lunch. And what would you all eat?
In light of my desire to eventually write crime thriller type books I would like to invite Sue Grafton who I don’t know much about despite reading all of her Alphabet Murder series to date.
My actor of the moment would have to be Matthew McConaughey because he has just been in the brilliant ‘True Detective’ and I loved him in ‘The Lincoln Lawyer’ by Michael Connelly (also a favourite author).
A figure from history would be Nelson Mandela. I’d like to know what it would feel like to be in his presence and he’s always come across to me as having a bit of a twinkle in his eye and I bet would be a lot of fun to be around.
|A young Nelson Mandela|
We would all eat steak at my local pub, with chips - and salad to kid you into feeling as if you’re being good! Raspberry Ripple Cheesecake would follow - one of the best things I’ve tasted this year! Happy days
What do fans of Georgia Rose have in store in 2014
I have rather rashly said that ‘Before the Dawn’ will be out this summer, it will be late summer because I have very little time to work on it at the moment but I’m pretty determined once I put my mind to something so will be doing everything I can to get it out as soon as I can.
Then I shall be straight on to ‘Thicker than Water’ which is fighting to get out of my head every day.
In the meantime everyone will just have to keep guessing as to what’s going to happen in this trilogy because despite all the theories that have been put to me so far no one is even close - I love it!
Georgia, it has been a pleasure to see you around the Cauldron and I, and all the Wizardwatchers, wish you all the best for the future.
Thank you, Wiz. It's been fun.
The Grayson Trilogy FB page http://on.fb.me/1k8WIT7
A Single Step on Amazon http://amzn.to/1peXNdX
Derek Fowlds in politicom Yes Minister
The brilliant Henry Cecil - not only a magnificent trainer
of racehorses, but a cultivator of some of England's finest
A slice of village life - The Wicker Man
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