Today I have the pleasure of welcoming DB Carter to Chat About Books 🙂
Many thanks to Laura @ Cameron Publicity for arranging the following interview.
For those who don’t know already, could you tell us about yourself and your book(s) please?
I am D B Carter, I live in Devon, England with my wife. We have three wonderful grown-up children. After 30 years of careers in art, science and business, I have followed my lifelong dream of becoming an author.
My first book, “The Cherries” has just been published, and it is a present-day drama with a dash of romance. It’s about everyday life, how we respond to the problems and traumas that people suffer, from bullying and self-harm to bereavement, anxiety and mental health. Through love and mutual understanding, we can help people to heal.
Where did/do you get your ideas from?
From the world around me, from my own experiences and the lives of others that have touched mine, as well as books and films; but many ideas just come to me.
Are any of your characters based (however loosely) on anyone you know?
There are aspects of friends and family incorporated into the main characters, but I doubt anyone would recognise themselves. Susan has characteristics in common with my wife and my sister, but she is very much her own woman. Luke is the man I would like to be, I suppose.
How do you pick your characters’ names?
Sometimes they are my own tribute to a fictional character that I have enjoyed. For example, Susan is the real name of the eponymous hero in ‘Educating Rita’, which is a play, film and book that I would recommend to anybody. Susan’s mother, Marian, is an oblique reference to Miriam in Sons and Lovers. Neither of my characters is like their literary influence, but they are a private homage to wonderful creations that I have enjoyed reading.
However, in real life I am terrible at remembering people’s names, so I also pick ones that will stick. Even so, I have a long piece of paper beside my laptop which lists all my characters. Occasionally, I have inadvertently changed a name half way through and only realised at the end – thank heavens for ‘Find and Replace’.
Can you share your writing process with us, in a nutshell?
Who are your top 5 favourite authors?
Charles Dickens, Charlotte Bronte, Anthony Trollope, R F Delderfield, Thomas Hardy
If you could meet any author, who would it be and what would you ask them?
Charles Dickens and I’d ask him what would have happened at the end of his unfinished work, the Mystery of Edwin Drood
Were you a big reader as a child?
Yes. Enid Blyton, Malcolm Saville, JRR Tolkien, E Nesbit, and countless more authors. I would also buy the books of films I enjoyed, as we didn’t have a VCR in those days.
When did you start to write?
I always have, for my own interest. I started to write “The Cherries” a few years ago and found that I was happier than I had been in a long time.
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?
I’d expand on the finish of “The 39 Steps”. I love the book, but I found the ending very abrupt.
I think that I, like many people, would like to have written Pride and Prejudice.
If you wrote an autobiography, what would your title be?
“A Series of Fortunate Accidents.”
If you could invite any fictional character for coffee who would it be and where would you take them?
Samuel Pickwick. We could go for a cup of tea to our lovely local farm shop.
Tell us a random fact about yourself.
I once cuddled a tiger.
What are you working on right now?
My second novel, presently titled “The Wild Roses”. It is quite different from my first book, but still very much in the drama genre.
Tell us about your last release?
“The Cherries” was released a few weeks ago. It is a drama with a dash of romance, and it tries to touch upon the issues of modern life in a gentle and respectful way.
Do you have a new release due?
Not yet, but hopefully not too far off.
What do you generally do to celebrate on publication day?
Well, I’ve only had one, so it is hard to draw a pattern. All I can say is that no celebration could be complete without my wife as a part of it.
How can readers keep in touch with you?
I’m on Facebook and Twitter, @DBCarterAuthor
Is there anything else you would like us to know?
Just that I am grateful to anyone who reads my book, and I would always love to hear from people with their honest feedback
Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions!
When they have broken you, when you have been humiliated, bullied, deserted and destitute, can you find a place where you may dare to be happy?
Susan travels with her mother, escaping a life of heartbreak and poverty in the city, to live with their one remaining friend in a small rural village.
At twenty Susan is still bound by the trauma of her youth, but starts to blossom into womanhood, thanks to the tender encouragement of Luke, the eccentric occupant of ‘The Cherries’, who lives surrounded by books and art. It is a journey of tears and laughter, helping to heal mind and spirit.
But can the past ever be truly behind you?
Feeling safe and secure at last, mother and daughter nurture artistic talents that they had long since thought worthless, and their lives take directions they could never have imagined.
Yet, amongst the kindness and love in their new community, there lies hidden grief and a long-suppressed secret that must come to light. Something that might force Susan to another life beyond the confines of the village.
happy reading 🙂