by Bronagh on November 11, 2015
Today on the book tour for the release of Rosie Blake’s new ‘How To Stuff Up Christmas’, I’ve an interview with the funny lady behind this charming book.
- Can you tell us what your new book ‘How To Stuff Up Christmas’ is about’?
Eve is heartbroken and desperate to escape all the Christmas cheer. Packing herself off onto a houseboat in the middle of nowhere she thinks she might achieve it. But she hasn’t counted on meeting one angry goose, a class of potters and a sexy local vet determined to teach her to cook. And it seems she might not be able to run away from everything after all…
- To the readers of the website, tell us about yourself and how you got into writing.
I had been writing diaries and chain emails to friends for years. I really enjoyed it and moved onto entering short story competitions. The competitions allowed me to experiment with different writing styles and also cheered me up when I was placed. I then started writing novels. My debut ‘How To Get A (Love) Life’ was published last year and ‘How To Find Your (First) Husband’ is out in Summer 2016.
- What is the best thing about Christmas?
Family – I love us all crowded round the table playing Trivial Pursuit (circa 1994 so the questions are all mad) laughing, teasing and eating Roses chocolates from the tin. Then moving through to the living room to listen to my mother’s running commentary as she watches the ‘Downton Abbey’ Christmas special (“Bates… He’s always lurking by pillars…” “That Thomas doesn’t have trustworthy eyes…” “They better not be on about bloody pigs again” etc). Perfect.
- If you could rewrite any book, which one would it be?
I wouldn’t re-write them so much as make JK lengthen them. I want MORE Harry Potter woman, write MORE.
- What is the best thing about writing?
So much to choose from. I think it’s trying to get someone to LOL on public transport. I want someone to be smiling as they turn the page.
- Out of all the books that you have written, which one is your favourite?
THESE QUESTIONS ARE SO HARD. OK well ‘How To Stuff Up Christmas’ is definitely my cutest read – and I love the fact it is filled with simple recipes. But ‘How To Find Your (First) Husband’ out July 2016 is set on a gorgeous island and has a comedy MONKEY in it for goodness sake.
- Who is your favourite literary hero/heroine?
I worship Jilly Cooper. She is simply Queen of all that is good. Characterisation, witty writing, HOT men. She rocks. I also heart some funny ladies – Kirsty Greenwood makes me LOL, as does Lisa Dickenson.
- If you were to start your own book club, what authors would you ask to join?
Ooh what a fabulous idea. Rowan Coleman as she is so warm and clever, Julie Cohen as she would bring highlighters and cake, Kirsty Greenwood because she would bring the Grease 2 soundtrack, Holly Martin because she would bring wine, Kat Black because she would talk about the sexy bits, Emma Garcia because she is all the funnies, Katie Marsh as she would be organised and would have actually read the book and OH SO MANY MORE I WANT TO INVITE… X
- What area do you suggest a budding writer should concentrate on to further their abilities?
Read, read, read. If you want to write commercial fiction I think you need to read, and love, it. Break down your favourite books. Ask why you loved certain characters, how did the author do it? Look at the structure, the amount of description and dialogue etc. You can definitely learn loads from reading other books.
- If you were stranded on a desert island, which 3 books would you bring with you to pass the time?
Gah what a question. I would take something worthy and thought-provoking, maybe ‘Sophie’s World’ so I could ponder philosophy. I would take ‘Are You Experienced’ by William Sutcliffe so I could laugh when feeling sad about being stranded and lastly maybe a colouring book to stay all zen.
- When sitting down to write, what is the one item you need beside you?
Tea. Even if I just allow it to go cold. It needs to be there.
- And finally, do you have any projects or releases on the horizon that you would like to share with the readers of the website?
I’m really excited about next year and the release of ‘How To Find Your (First) Husband’. It is set in LA, Cornwall and Malaysia and I just loved writing it. There are turtles, monkeys, hot men and people dressed as prawns in it – what more could you want?
You can buy How to Get a (Love) Life from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.