Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Author Interview: Sheila O'Flanagan

Today I'd like to thank bestselling author Sheila O'Flanagan, whose book All For You is published tomorrow, for agreeing to answer my questions.  As you can see I went a bit OTT with my questionnaire but she was a trooper and answered them all, so over to Sheila...

How long did it take you to get your first book published?
It was accepted fairly quickly by a publisher but it was nearly 2 years later before it actually appeared in print as their list was very full. They were the longest 2 years of my life! 

Do you have a set daily writing routine?
I always try to be at my desk by 9.30, so that I have a working day feel about it. The problem these days is that between the Internet, Facebook, Twitter and email, there’s a lot to distract you once you’re there. Someone once said that being a writer is 1% writing and 99% not letting yourself get distracted by the Internet and they’re absolutely right. 

Have any of your characters in your books been based on people you know? If so, did they recognise themselves?
I don’t base characters on people I know – actually very few writers consciously do that. However lots of people think that characters are based on them!! 

How hard is it to keep coming up with fresh ideas for new books?
It’s not hard to come up with ideas, but the difficulty is making sure that your idea is strong enough for an entire book. However, once you come up with believable characters to carry it, you’re halfway there. The biggest difficulty for me is finding names for them, especially the men! I like simple names and I think I’ve used up most of them by now. 

If you could write another style of genre, what would it be and why?
I’d like to do something in the sci-fi/fantasy genre because you can let your imagination run riot and you’re not restricted by the plausibility of modern life. 

After writing 19 successful novels, how do you manage to keep yourself motivated?
You learn something new with every book you wwrite and so no matter how many you’ve already done it’s still an evolving process. I love words and people, so that’s what keeps me motivated. 

Have you got a favourite out of all the books you've written, if so, which one and why?
Not really. It’s like asking me to pick my favourite child! All of them have a special place in my heart. 

If you could give one piece of advice to an aspiring author, what would it be?
Stop talking about writing, stop reading about writing, just write

Are you able to give us a hint about what your next novel is about? And when is it likely to be published?
Better Together will be out in July this year. It’s about a girl who loses her job, her boyfriend and her home at the same time so her life takes a few unexpected turns…. 

Do you have much spare time to read books? If so, what was the last book you read or what are you currently reading?
I can easily read three or four books a week but when I’m writing myself that goes down to about one a week. I usually read crime or thrillers when I’m writing as I my own writing voice is very different to them. The last book I read was The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey. 

If you could have any of your books made into a film, which one would you choose and why? Who would you cast in the leading roles?
Isobel’s Wedding – because it’s the one the most of my fans seem to want to see on the big screen so my readers would be happy! By the time they get around to it maybe there will be a hot new actress looking for a role…but Emily Blunt would make a good Isobel. 

If you were going to be stuck on a desert island and could only take 3 books with you, which ones would you choose?
The Golf Omnibus – PG Wodehouse. Not really about golf. Timelessly, side-splittingly funny short stories.
Goldfinger – Ian Fleming. It’s short but brilliantly written, a great story and shows fantastic economy of style.
To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee. One of my favourite books of all time. 

Can you describe All For You in 20 words or less?
I’m hopeless at doing that!!! 

To find out more about All For You and Better Together why not head over to Sheila's website where you can read an extract of both books to get you in the mood.  I'm almost finished reading All For You so make sure you check back later as my review will be uploaded later this week. 

No comments:

Post a Comment