I'd like to welcome Natalie to the blog today and express how excited I am to have her here for my interview series. Getting inside authors heads and finding out their little ways of doing things is something I thrive on. This interview series is something I have loved doing and can't wait to continue doing. I might even have another one soon! For now though, I will let Natalie take to the floor.
1. Why did you start writing?
I started writing primarily because I couldn't identify with many of the heroines of the books I loved to read at the time. It was the height of the chick-lit era, and almost all of the female leads were middle class with university degrees, and had a big group of equally successful friends. It was great for escapism, but being from a working class background, with no degree and growing up in social housing, I just couldn't relate. I also wanted to read more books with characters of different ethnic backgrounds and after struggling to find many in the genre, I decided to write a book myself!
2. You've written quite a few books, how did you come up with the ideas for them?
My ideas come from all over the place! Together Apart was born while I was on holiday in Santorini, Greece. It's such a romantic island with proposals happening left right and centre, and I wondered what would happen if one of the girls had said no. I was on the beach at the time with no laptop, pen or paper (well I was on holiday!), so I started writing it in the notes app of my phone! Love You Better has always been in the back of my mind as domestic abuse is something that's very close to my heart, and I wanted to write a story that I felt could do the complex nature of it some justice. I hope I have, anyway! Finally, Wanderlust was sparked by my love of travelling, and also falling for a lovely German guy while I was away. That being said, it is fictional!
3. Do you have any ideas for future books?
I have so many! Unfortunately, I don't know if they're all viable enough to be turned into a full length novel. I'd love to do something that's more about backpacking, set in the 70's. I find the hippy era so intriguing!
4. How long does it take you to write a book?
It depends. Together Apart and Love You Better were both written while I had a full time job so they took quite a few months in total. I'm just about to start my next full length novel and since I don't have an office job any more, I'm hoping it'll be quicker!
5. What is your favourite part of the writing process?
I love it when I get excited about the idea. And I also love getting boards up on Pinterest. Gathering ideas is always the best part as it helps to craft the story in my head.
6. You also blog, what kind of posts do you do?
Nowadays, I tend to blog about my book-related news but in the past I shared music and random thoughts. Now I do that on my Facebook page instead!
7. Where do you find your writing inspiration?
All over the place! It can come from song lyrics, conversations with real people or just seemingly random thoughts. Often I'll think, 'wow, I wonder what would happen if...' and it all goes from there.
8. Will you branch out of the romance genre or do you feel this is where you're writing is best?
Hm. I would love to try my hand at a young adult story, probably dystopian, but that would be much, much further in the future.
9. Would you ever consider co-writing a novel?
Oh, yes. I did that once already with some writing buddies but we only did one chapter each. My boyfriend is also an awesome writer, although his style is very different to mine. Maybe one day...
10. What would be your top advice for aspiring writers?
Write, write, write. And read. And write. Even if you think what you're writing is garbage, do it anyway. I'd also suggest getting involved in the writing community on Facebook and Twitter. It's such a great network and for the most part, very supportive!
Want to see more from Natalie?
Thank you to Natalie for taking part and I hope you enjoyed this interview!