Friday, 27 March 2020

Debut Spotlight: Karen Moore

Today it is my pleasure to be shining the spotlight on author Karen Moore and her debut novel Torn which was published last October.

Karen Moore is passionate about all things noir – crime, mystery, thrillers – and writes in that genre.

She has been writing all her life, mostly for work purposes, and is now delighted to be able to spend more time developing her own creative work.

Her debut novel, Torn, is a dark tale of intrigue and betrayal set in Sicily and North Wales. She is currently working on the sequel.

Karen worked as a tour guide across Europe, North America and Canada, followed by a career in PR and marketing. She has lived in France and Italy and is now based in Cheshire, England.

You can find Karen on Facebook and Twitter.

What first got you into writing and why?
I’ve always enjoyed writing since I was a child – I was the one with lots of pen-pals who I’d write to regularly and at great length, in addition to all the fantastical stories I’d make up. I found language fascinating and relished the chance to discover and disappear into a world of my own creation. Being an only child with imaginary friends and a vivid imagination helped enormously.

I went on to develop a career in PR and marketing where writing was a key requirement and a creative streak certainly helped. It wasn’t until much later in life that I started to dedicate more time to developing my own writing.

What genre do you write in?
Although I read widely, my preferred genre is contemporary thriller/crime/mystery, and that is the genre of choice for my writing. I particularly enjoy Nordic Noir novels with their iconic settings, strong characters, and underlying social issues.

Reading other authors in the same genre helps to give you a feel of what might or not work for you as a writer but it’s important to develop your own style.

What inspired you to write Torn?
Torn was inspired by the migrant situation in the Mediterranean and the impact it was having on Sicily at its height, as well as the resulting human misery. I had an outline idea for the plot, led by a female protagonist who would be faced with agonising choices against a backdrop of people-trafficking. And two contrasting locations - Sicily and North Wales.

What started as a germ of an idea, grew slowly and organically into a novel. I enjoyed the writing journey so much, and now it’s published, it’s lovely to hear that readers are enjoying it too.

Is your writing all fictitious or do you also undertake research?
Although Torn is based on real-life events in the Mediterranean, the characters and individual events are totally fictitious. I get ideas from various sources: news reports, documentaries, my own experiences, and ideas that crop up, usually at the most inconvenient times. I am familiar with both settings – Sicily and North Wales - and visit places I want to feature, either in person or virtually. I do desk research to check out the feasibility of my ideas.

If you had to give an elevator pitch for Torn, what would it be?
A young English woman is forced to face the dark world of Sicilian organised crime in a desperate race against time in this gritty contemporary thriller, a story of intrigue and betrayal.

Like any mother, Hanna would do anything to protect her small daughter, Eva.

When she discovers that her husband, Luciano, is not all he seems and their blissful life on the island of Sicily is threatened, she wastes no time in seeking refuge abroad. But just as they are settling into their new life in North Wales, Eva disappears.

In a race against time, Hanna is forced to return to Sicily and face the dark world of organised crime in a bid to secure her daughter’s safe return. She must also confront the truth about Luciano’s business dealings and their horrific consequences.

But will Hanna succeed in getting Eva back and bring Luciano to justice?

Find Torn on Amazon (UK) or here for Amazon USA

What would be your advice to aspiring authors?
Enjoy the writing journey, take every opportunity to learn and develop your skills, encourage feedback and advice from others, but stay true to yourself.

What’s next for you as a writer?
I’m currently writing the sequel to Torn, unnamed as yet, which I hope to finish by the end of the year.

Find Torn on Amazon (UK) or here for Amazon USA

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