Welcome to my stop on Beverley Harvey’s Eden Interrupted blog tour with Love Books Tours!
Many thanks to Kelly @ Love Book Tours for arranging the following interview.
For those who don’t know already, could you tell us about yourself and your books please?
Hello! I’m Beverley Harvey and I’m excited to launch my second novel, Eden Interrupted, the follow-up sequel to my debut, Seeking Eden. You could say I’m a late bloomer as I didn’t start writing until my early fifties – but now I’ve really got the bug. Most of my working life was spent in advertising and PR – including a lengthy spell as a freelance PR consultant and copywriter. These days, thanks to an incredibly supportive partner, I devote most of my time to reading and writing fiction.
Where did/do you get your ideas from? Both the Eden novels were inspired by events close to home. I spent ten years living in a new town in beautiful, semi-rural Kent and found the lifestyle very different to anywhere I’d lived before in central and South London. In a pioneering and close-knit community, people’s lives become extricably linked – it can feel like you’re living in a soap opera. When I started to write, I wanted to keep it real and so where I was living became an ideal backdrop for suburban family drama.
Are any of your characters based (however loosely) on anyone you know? I personally identify very strongly with Lisa Dixon, who is a central character in both Seeking Eden and Eden Interrupted; bad-boy Ben Wilde is a composite of some of my ex-boyfriends – with a dash of wit and humour that comes from my brother who is very funny. Other characters were inspired by people I’ve met on my travels, because people fascinate me and there’s no such thing as ‘ordinary’ – everyone is unique and interesting.
How do you pick your characters’ names? Carefully. Names say so much about a person – their age, their background, their parents’ aspirations for them. I try to be authentic regarding getting the era right; you wouldn’t call a Victorian heroine Tiffany or Britney, for instance!
Can you share your writing process with us, in a nutshell? It starts with an idea – usually a place, character or theme, and then I flesh out a loose plot. Once I start writing, the characters begin steering events as they become very real to me and it’s important to remain in character. I am more lucid in the mornings and the evenings, but my energy dips in the afternoon so I rarely write then. Sometimes I dream material that I then include somewhere – tip: keep a notebook and pen beside your bed!
Who are your top 5 favourite authors? Oh, it changes from one era to another. When I was young, I devoured everything by Fay Weldon, Paul Theroux and Anita Brookner. Now I read a diverse spread but I’m very into Cara Hunter, Kelly Florentia, Gillian Flynn and Louise Beech at the moment.
If you could meet any author, who would it be and what would you ask them? Gillian Flynn; I’d ask her how she maintains such a breakneck pace in her novels and how she comes up with those killer twists.
Were you a big reader as a child? I crawled into the world of Enid Blyton – particularly the St Clare’s and Malory Towers yarns. I also read a lot of short stories, but I couldn’t name them now.
When did you start to write? In my early fifties I did several terms at a creative writing class and it sparked something that had probably always been there. Seeking Eden came out in a big gush, whilst Eden Interrupted was a more considered and carefully plotted journey.
If you could re-write the ending to any book what would it be and what would you change? Paul Theroux’s Mosquito Coast had a big effect on me when I was young, and I was horrified when anti-hero Allie Fox died. I’d give the book a happy ending; the family united by struggle and living in their self-built utopia.
Is there a book you wish you had written? Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn – what an incredible plot!
If you wrote an autobiography, what would your title be? I’d call it ‘A Life in Aspic’; I’ve always been so cautious and so worried about what other people think – often scared to break out of situations that were unpalatable to me.
If you could invite any fictional character for coffee who would it be and where would you take them? I’d invite Audrey Fox, Kelly Florentia’s heroine from No Way Back and Her Secret for expresso in Pizza Navona in Rome.
What are you working on right now? My first psychological thriller! It’s very challenging because the focus is as much on plot as on characters. Coming up with exciting twists is pretty taxing.
Tell us about your last release? Seeking Eden was my debut; I’m so delighted with the reviews and the way people responded to the characters of Eden Hill.
Do you have a new release due? Eden Interrupted launches on 6th June. It’s incredibly relatable and centres on fractured family; a newly married couple who’ve hit a rough patch, a one parent family struggling with the aftermath of divorce, and a mature couple trying to fit into a new community. There’s a lot of raw emotion in Eden Interrupted – real life hurts sometimes – but as with Seeking Eden, there’s a lot of humour, too. Also, look out for a dark and disturbing plotline guaranteed to give you chills.
What do you generally do to celebrate on publication day? For Seeking Eden I had a big flamboyant party surrounded by friends and family. For the launch of Eden Interrupted, I’ll toast the new baby with my other half and one or two close friends.
How can readers keep in touch with you? I’m always pleased to communicate through Twitter @BevHarvey_ and I have a website at www.beverleyharvey.co.uk – people can email me or post comments on my blog page.
90s popstar Ben Wilde and his bride Lisa return from honeymoon to find a cuckoo in the nest and a surprise European tour in the diary.
Lisa befriends neighbour Rosemary, who is also home alone while husband Nigel travels for work. But will the women’s grim suspicions be confirmed, or does absence make the heart grow paranoid?
In the village, Eden Hill’s coffee shop is under new management with the arrival of divorced Mum, Chloe, and troubled teen son, Jake. But serving flat whites leaves Chloe feeling, well, flat until she meets Caleb, a widowed father of two; if only Jake and Caleb weren’t at loggerheads.
New to Eden Hill are Jan and Martin Bevan, but a frosty reception leaves them wondering if they’ve made a huge mistake.
From the writer of Seeking Eden, Eden Interrupted is another sizzling slice-of-life drama where paths (and swords) cross, and misunderstandings abound. Perfect for fans of Fiona Gibson and Marian Keyes.
For almost thirty years Beverley Harvey has worked in the communications industry. Beverley (Bev to her friends) recently swapped PR campaigns for plot lines and completed her first novel; she continues to supply words for businesses across several sectors. When not writing or reading, Bev enjoys listening to rock and indie music, cooking, baking, and keeping fit. An animal lover she is inspired by nature, art and life’s daily trials and tribulations. Born in Yorkshire, and raised in South London, Beverley now lives in Chichester with her partner.
happy reading 🙂