The Blog Chain: The Next Big Thing
Thank you Mary T. McGuire http://mtmcguire.co.uk/2012/10/17/the-next-big-thing/ for including me in this blog chain.
Q. What is the working title of your book?
A. The current working title, For The Love Of Honey, is also The Final Title. But, for quite a while I called it The Governess. I still like that but it doesn’t reflect the content enough to serve the purpose.
Q. Where did the idea come from for the book?
A. For The Love Of Honey is the third book in the Simon Grant Mysteries series. To some extent, it’s rooted in the first two mysteries. It picks up on two or three themes that haven’t been quite resolved before. But, it also has a discrete identity of its own.
Q. What genre does your book fall under?
A. Psychological Murder Mystery
Q. Which actors would you choose to play your characters in a film rendition?
A. Ah, well, now we’re talking.
Some ten years ago Colin Firth would have been perfect for the part. My current cast of recurring characters:
Rupert Penry Jones as DI Simon Grant:
Michelle Dockery as Pippa Martin (Simon Grant’s wife)
Emily Blunt as Emma Martin (sister-in-law):
– James D’Arcy as Philip Martin (Emma’s husband)
Vanessa Redgrave as Eve Hamilton Grant (mother):
John Bird as Adam Hamilton Grant (father)
Stephen Fry as Rudi Hamilton Grant (brother):
Others may include Saoirse Ronan, David Suchet, scores of others. My books are densely populated. They could keep most of the British actors in work for years.
Q. What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
A. Why should Secret Service feel sufficiently threatened by an elderly gynaecologist and a policeman’s wife to kill them?
Q. Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
Q. How long did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
A. A long, long time. I write slowly at the best of times. On top of that, when I reached about 40,000 words mark I realised that one of my central characters had outgrown their motivation/back story. So, it was back to square one. Such recoveries are very difficult because a major character tends to seep into all the others, their actions and reactions as well as dominate the overall feel and tone of the story. The storyline remained fairly intact but the way it was told had to be drastically changed. I’m still at it.
Q. What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
A. Hmmm… My books are often compared to the works of John Le Carre and P. D. James. But that’s the overall style, not the content. By format they are police procedurals in the good old British tradition.
Q. Who or What inspired you to write this book?
A. I’ve always liked mysteries. With the exception of well researched historical novels, that’s the only genre that appeals to the brain rather than senses and emotions. Only, I’m a little bit like a child and its toys. I like stripping my toys to pieces to see what’s inside, what makes them tick. That’s what I do with my characters and the stories are strongly character-driven.
Q. What else about your book might pique the reader’s interest?
A. All the three stories are told from two different but complementary points of view. The third book, For the Love of Honey, also employs some other ways of telling the story.
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