Hi and welcome to my stop on Sandra Ireland’s Bone Deep blog tour.
Many thanks to Sandra Ireland and Kelly @ Love Books Group Tours
Interview with Sandra Ireland…..
Where did/do you get your ideas from?
Because my books are quite dark and twisty, I always think it’s a good plan to write about what scares me, and I’m sure many of my readers share those fears! I’m terrified of mice, water and abandoned buildings. Also scrapyards and old cars, so that’s a clue for book 3…I like to combine seemingly random ideas too, which often leads to some interesting subplots.
Are any of your characters based (however loosely) on anyone you know?
Actually no, but sometimes I come across people in real life who remind me of my characters! For example, I work one day a week in my local ironmongers, and one day a lady walked in and I thought, ‘You’re Mac!’ (Bone Deep). She was wearing a Barbour jacket, with the pockets full of dog biscuits, and proceeded to tell me all about her spaniels in rather a posh accent!
Sometimes it requires a bit of thought. I like to give a nod to the classics. In Beneath the Skin, Walt’s full name is Robert Walton, the narrator from Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. I liked the idea that Walt is on the outside looking in, observing this strange household he’s become a part of. Lucie Snowe in Bone Deep is called after Lucy Snowe in Villette by Charlotte Brontë. Like my Lucie, Brontë’s Lucy finds herself in difficult circumstances and ends up far from home. My other favourite Lucie is Lucie Westenra from Dracula, whose passions get the better of her!
Can you share your writing process with us, in a nutshell?
I try to write (type) 500 words every day, but I don’t write quickly. I edit constantly, and I’m obsessed with word choice. Everything has to fit before I can move on which is a bit laborious! I’d love to just spew out a first draft in a month, but that doesn’t feel right to me. I like to craft a story, and it’s painstaking.
Who are your top 5 favourite authors?
That’s a really difficult one, because, of course, I love the Brontës and all things related to them, but there are some super-talented debut writers coming up, and I’m lucky to know many of them personally. Here are my top five in no particular order:
If you could meet any author, who would it be and what would you ask them?
I’d ask Emily Brontë who inspired Heathcliff!
Were you a big reader as a child?
Yes, I consumed books about horses! I loved the books of Christine Pullein-Thompson and Monica Edwards.
When did you start to write?
I’ve written since I was a little girl, and really got the bug seriously as a teenager! I never thought anything would ever happen with my stories, because being a writer wasn’t a ‘thing’ back then. Now, we celebrate creativity in young people, whereas when I was in my teens, you were expected to get a ‘proper’ job.
If you could re-write the ending to any book what would it be and what would you change?
I recently read White Chrysanthemum by Mary Lynn Bracht. Such a powerful book. It reduced me to tears. I so wanted something to happen at the end, but I can’t give any spoilers. Read the book and you’ll understand!
Is there a book you wish you had written?
Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine (Gail Honeyman). Her characterisation is phenomenal. I loved Eleanor, and I’d love to create a character like that.
If you wrote an autobiography, what would your title be?
She Got There In The End
If you could invite any fictional character for coffee who would it be and where would you take them?
I’d take Eleanor Oliphant to one of our lovely cafes in Carnoustie. I think she’d like the good service and a nice walk on the beach.
What are you working on right now?
I’m working on novel number 4, which is the first in a series, possibly. I can’t say too much about it but the main character is an older woman who finds herself caught between the generations, caring for an elderly relative while looking out for her young daughter. I think many women will identify with that. Needless to say there will be a few dark twists along the way!
Tell us about your last release?
My debut novel is Beneath the Skin, which was shortlisted for a Saltire Society First Novel Award. It’s the story of Walt, a soldier suffering from PTSD, who drifts into the lives of two rather odd sisters. One sister, Alys, is a taxidermist and Walt is offered a job as her assistant. Working with her dead specimens does not help his mental health, but he’s determined to stick around to find out exactly what is happening in this house of secrets.
Do you have a new release due?
Bone Deep will be published by Polygon at the beginning of July. This is another psychological thriller set in an abandoned watermill. Lucie arrives there under a cloud to do some work for Mac, a rather grumpy academic. Lucie, it turns out, is harbouring as many secrets as the old mill…
What do you generally do to celebrate on publication day?
It will involve bubbly, that’s for sure! Bone Deep will be having three launches. The main one if at The Scottish Arts Club in Edinburgh, and then two local ones at the Two Sisters Café, Carnoustie and the Bookhouse, Monifieth.
I’m on Twitter @22_ireland and my website is https://sandrairelandauthor.com I’m also on Goodreads, and Facebook (Sandra Ireland Author)
Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions, Sandra 🙂
What happens when you fall in love with the wrong person?
The consequences threaten to be far-reaching and potentially deadly. Bone Deep is a contemporary novel of sibling rivalry, love, betrayal and murder. It is a dual narrative, told in alternative chapters by Mac, a woman bent on keeping the secrets of the past from her only son, and the enigmatic Lucie, whose own past is something of a closed book. Their story is underpinned by the creaking presence of an abandoned water mill, and haunted by the local legend of two long-dead sisters, themselves rivals in love, and ready to point an accusing finger from the pages of history.