Welcome to my stop on Jonathan de Montfort’s Turner blog tour!
Many thanks to Kelly @ Love Books Group Tours for arranging the following interview with Jonathan de Montfort…..
For those who don’t know already, could you tell us about yourself and your book(s) please?
I’m a passionate reader and writer of course; I seemed to be plagued by ideas for new stories in every waking moment, perhaps writing is just a way to get the ideas out of my head!
I like to keep myself fit and train daily in triathlon although I’m fairly mediocre at the three sports! When I have a spare 2 or 3 months, I like to climb the world’s highest mountains. So far, I’ve climbed Aconcagua and Elbrus; I still have dreams about Everest!
On a normal day, I’m a big coffee drinker and I’m relentlessly jibed about my convoluted coffee making routine which involves filtering water, heating all the equipment prior to grinding freshly roasted beans and filtering the coffee!
Turner is a rich, dark, layered text that slowly draws you in before taking you on a roller-coaster ride of emotions in a story about what it means to be human, pure love and the sacrifices people make to preserve those things.
I would say that Turner is not for the faint hearted as there are some graphic depictions, although wholly appropriate for the story, but nevertheless…Warning: it is a rollercoaster of ever increasing pace, so hang on to your hat!!
Where did / do you get your ideas from?
Ideas can strike at any time, for example Turner has been with me since I was 15 years old or so. In its early form it was called Turner’s Chess Game and it was an idea about a person playing a chess game which was symbolising a strategy he was carrying out in the real world. I wasn’t sure what it meant, but it gave me goose bumps and I knew I had to write it.
But it’s also important, once you have the inspired scenes down, to plot from beginning to end
Are any of your characters based (however loosely) on anyone you know?
For sure, in Turner there are quite a few. I think this is always likely for a first book. My second book has far less ‘real world’ characters. In any case, if I know them well, I always tell them in advance, get permission and put in an acknowledgement.
How do you pick your characters’ names?
Sometimes I feel a name is exactly correct, like it fits the character for example, Hero, James Turner and Inspector Bertrande. Other times it’s just a random pick from popular girls’ or boys’ names at the time the book is set.
Can you share your writing process with us, in a nutshell?
I’m a big plotter, from a very early stage in actually writing Turner, I sat down and put a very simple set of steps as to how the protagonist, Richard (or Hero), was going to get from the start of the book as a thirteen-year-old boy to the end of the book, defending the world from evil.
I think story is the most important part and that’s why I spend a large amount of time on plotting and outlining to quite a detailed degree.
I’m in the process of filming a tutorial on how I write. I have a large magnetic white board in my writing room and I have a set of magnetic post it style cards that I can attach to it. Whenever I have an idea for a scene I can write on a new card and attach it to the board. This also allows me to reorganise the rest of the story to accommodate the new idea fairly easily. It also allows me to see the story flow in a glance which naturally helps with keeping the narrative pacing correct.
When writing a scene, firstly I look over the entire story on my story board, pick out the scene I want to write, read through the extensive journalist’s account (an in-depth bullet point outline of the scene) then I ask questions about the scene about the five senses, the emotions etc. sometimes I might play a piano piece in the emotional feeling of the scene. And then I write it (or speak it – I have quite an advanced speech to text setup in my writing room).
Who are your top 5 favourite authors?
I’ve listed 6 as I make a point of reading authors from a variety of backgrounds and cultures. I wanted to list my favourite three male and female authors.
If you could meet any author, who would it be and what would you ask them?
David Mitchell. I’m not sure what I’d ask, I’d probably be star struck to be in the presence of such an incredible writing genius. Perhaps I’d blurt out to ask where the idea for Cloud Atlas came from.
Were you a big reader as a child?
Yes, I read many books including The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, 1984, Good Omens (which has just been made into a TV series and I can’t wait to watch it!) Flowers for Algernon, Brave New World, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (and many, many other Roald Dahl books!)
When did you start to write?
In many ways, I’ve been writing short stories all of my life, just personal ones to myself. But I officially sat down to write my debut novel Turner in August 2013.
If you could re-write the ending to any book what would it be and what would you change?
Is there a book you wish you had written?
Bridget Jones’ Diary, it seemed to end a bit too quickly for my taste.
If you wrote an autobiography, what would your title be?
Something like, ‘Finding my soul’ or ‘Bumbling my way’!
What are you working on right now?
Yes, I’m currently working on a bittersweet love story spanning 2000 years between 1986 and 2038; entitled ‘Saves 9’.
Although not yet on Amazon etc. (as the cover is still being designed) these should appear within about one or two months, pre-orders can be made De Montfort Literature. ISBNs: HB: 9781912770045 PB: 9781912770052 Kindle: 9781912770038
Tell us about your last release?
Turner is my debut novel
Do you have a new release due?
Saves 9 should be out towards the end of this year, but there’s no release date yet.
What do you generally do to celebrate on publication day?
I breathe a momentary sigh of relief followed by intensely worrying about what people will think / say about my book.
Publication day was / is often a bit of an anti-climax, because, mostly nothing happened apart from a few people posting on social media that they had received their copies!
How can readers keep in touch with you?
I can be contacted by direct message (DM) through my personal social media channels:
Or through the publisher channels:
Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions, Jonathan 🙂
One Big Decision.
“We Are the Light Join Us”.
Turner is a rich, dark, layered text that slowly draws you in before taking you
on a roller-coaster ride of emotions in a story about what it means to be
human, pure love and the sacrifices people make to preserve those things.
Hero, a young boy joining a new school, discovers he has a unique ability. One
he finds that he shares with his mysterious, enigmatic older brother James.
Upon this realisation, the brothers’ bond is cemented as they embark on a
complex emotional journey together, honing their skills and developing their
understanding of what this new found ability can bring for them both. However,
upon his eighteenth birthday, Hero learns that with his new ability comes a
choice and whenever he makes a decision there are serious consequences.
The story contrasts the parallel lives of the brothers as Hero decides to “Join
the Light” whilst James takes an entirely different path and disappears . .
Will they ever be reunited?
Jonathan de Montfort may not have had a conventional route into being an author, but his first novel “Turner” demonstrates his passion and commitment to the craft of writing, having taken four and a half years to write it! He already has ideas for a series of “Turner” novels and is committed to writing a new novel by 2020. Starting his professional life trading the US500, he went on to work as a hedge fund manager. His experience in this area was the inspiration for a more innovative route into publishing and the birth of De Montfort Literature in 2018. Offering a new alternative route to the traditional agents and publishers, publishing has entered a new era. De Montfort Literature is a division of De Montfort Capital, a successful hedge fund with a passion for literature. Recognising there is a dearth of good, new novelists, they decided to take what we know about hedge fund management and apply it to literature and the creation of a new generation of best-selling novelists. Turner is the first book to be released from DML, an engaging and challenging novel of love and sibling rivalry that is guaranteed to provoke both interest and outrage.
happy reading 🙂