I’m delighted to be joining in with Misha Herwin’s Shadows On The Grass blog tour 🙂
(If you missed my review the link will be at the bottom of this post)
For those who don’t know already, could you tell us about yourself and your book(s) please?
I’m Misha Herwin and I write books for adults and children as well as short stories and plays.
Where did/do you get your ideas from?
That is a really difficult question. I suppose the answer is that I don’t really know. Mostly I see a character in a particular place and then their story comes to me. With my latest novel, “Shadows on the Grass” however, the inspiration came from wanting to know more about my own family history. As I began researching I realised there was so much material there that had to be put in a novel.
Are any of your characters based (however loosely) on anyone you know?
This links in with the previous question, because although the stories I was told about my family were the starting point of “Shadows on the Grass” the people in the book were not based on anyone living or dead. If they do resemble anyone it was not intentional. As a writer, I am fascinated by people and their relationships. I am also a great people watcher and I love to listen to conversations on buses and trains. So it is perfectly possible that, without being conscious of doing so, I use character traits of people I know, or meet when I am creating a character. The one exception to this is my “Dragonfire” series for kids, where all the main characters are based on people I know, with their permission of course.
How do you pick your characters names?
Mostly they just come but sometimes I really struggle. In the past when I was writing “Teething Troubles” a play about a vampire who comes to school and I needed some unusual names I opened a dictionary at random and just jabbed at the words with a pencil. That gave me my main character a girl called Scoria, who also happened to be a vampire, because her parents spent their honeymoon in Transylvania.
Can you share your writing process with us, in a nutshell?
I plan every chapter before I write and I write at least an hour every day. This might not seem much but the hour is an absolute minimum. Otherwise I might do a whole morning, or a whole day.
Who are your top 5 favourite authors?
Jane Austen, Lucy M Boston, James Lee Burke, Donna Leon, Ian Rankin
If you could meet any author, who would it be and what would you ask them?
I’d like to ask J K Rowlands how many times “Harry Potter” was rejected.
Were you a big reader as a child?
I read all the time. As I slept in a bedroom at the front of the house, I would even read by the light of the streetlamp.
When did you start to write?
As soon as I could, which I suppose was around the age of eight. By the time I left primary school I had already written a historical novel set in the time of the Civil War.
If you could re-write the ending to any book what would it be and what would you change?
“Emma”. I don’t want her to have married Mr Knightly. He’s too much of a father figure; she should be more equally matched.
Is there a book you wish you had written?
“The Children of Green Knowe” by Lucy M Boston as it’s the perfect time slip novel.
If you wrote an autobiography, what would your title be?
“I did it”.
If you could invite any fictional character for coffee who would it be and where would you take them?
What are you working on right now?
I’m working on promoting “Shadows on the Grass”, editing a children’s book “City of Secrets” and planning a new time slip novel.
Do you have a new release due?
“City of Secrets”, a book for 8-12 year olds, is due out in the autumn.
What do you generally do to celebrate on publication day?
Have a large glass of wine, take deep breaths and eat cake.
How can readers keep in touch with you?
Through my website HERE
Facebook LINK and I tweet and @MishHerwin.
Is there anything else you would like us to know?
That “Shadows on the Grass” is now out as an e-book on Amazon CLICK
Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions, Misha 🙂
Every family has its secrets. In the nineteen-sixties Bristol, seventeen-year-old Kate is torn between the new sexual freedom and her rigid Catholic upbringing. Her parents have high expectations of her. She, however, is determined to lead her own life.
Mimi, her grandmother, is dying. In her final hours, Mimi’s cousin, the Princess, keeps watch at her bedside. Born in the same month, in the same year, the two women are bound by their past and a terrible betrayal.
Meanwhile, caught between the generations, Mimi’s daughter Hannah struggles to come to come to terms with her relationship with her mother, and struggles to keep the peace between her daughter and her husband. She too must find her own way in a land foreign to her, in a new post-war world, where the old certainties have gone and everything she knows has been swept away.