Secondly, (another post meant to go up yesterday – sorry sorry sorry!) is another brilliant Author Q&A with Natalie Kleinman on the blog tour for The Girl With Flaming Hair.…..enjoy!
about the girl with flaming hair
Sophie is plagued by the shadows of the past…
While driving his curricle, Rufus Solgrave, Earl of Luxton comes across Sophie Clifford lying unconscious in the road, having fallen from her horse.
Not too far from home, he takes her back to Ashby, his country seat, leaving her in the care of his mother, Elizabeth, Countess of Luxton, and his sister, Lydia. Under their kindly supervision, Sophie soon begins to recover.
Upon discovering that Sophie has never mixed with London society, Elizabeth invites her to accompany the family to town for Lydia’s come-out. Unhappy with her homelife and eager to sample the delights of the season, Sophie accepts.
However, her enjoyment is marred when talk of an old scandal surrounding her birth resurfaces. What’s more, her devious stepbrother, Francis Follet, has followed her to London, intent on making her his bride.
Sensing Sophie’s distress, Rufus steps in to protect her from Francis’s unwelcome advances.
And although neither Rufus nor Sophie are yet thinking of marriage, both soon begin to wonder whether their comfortable friendship could blossom into something warmer…
Q&A with Natalie Kleinman
Tell us a bit about yourself:
I like to think, even though I sit on my bottom for most of the day, that I’m not intrinsically lazy. It’s my writing world though that has kept me sane this past year. That, and reading. If there was ever a ‘right’ occupation to have in these difficult times, being an author is it. Shopping has been done online and housewifely jobs are done at a run, in quick but efficient bursts. Well, enough to keep me on top of things at least. I love meeting people but inevitably my husband and I have been hunkered down and, like so many others, we’re just beginning to emerge from our cocoon. I’m looking forward to seeing friends and family again on a regular basis and hoping we can resume our favourite pastime, going out to lunch with friends.
What inspired you to start writing?
Initially it was more accident than inspiration. I’d recently finished an OU course and I was looking around for something else to take its place. I hit upon creative writing and, in one short lesson, enthusiasm became compulsion. That was about sixteen years ago. The compulsion has never waned.
How many books have you written and published?
Twelve written, six published, three in the pipeline for publication and three that will never see the light of day but what I learned from them was invaluable.
Which book, out of all the books you have written, is your favourite and why?
I think it has to be The Ghost of Glendale. This was my first published Regency romance (though not my first published novel) so it holds a special place in my heart because I so love the genre in which I now write. Originally a pocket novel with The People’s Friend, my wonderful publishers, Sapere Books, have contracted it along with four others and I can’t wait for it’s re-release. The fact that it features a ghost makes it a little different. He’s a very nice ghost though.
How do you choose the names of your characters?
I think it’s important that the name fits the era. For instance, you’d have been unlikely to meet a Hayley in the early eighteen hundreds. There are a couple of websites I go to which list names that were popular in the period, and these are invaluable. I might light upon something I think it perfect but it hasn’t been unknown for that to change during the course of writing a book where the character will very firmly tell me that her name just doesn’t sit comfortably and would I please change it (taps elegantly-slippered foot). The same thing applies to the title. I always have a working title. Some have been retained but some have changed as the book develops and very obviously requires something else.
Which of your characters would you want to be stranded on an island with, and why?
Duncan Armstrong in The Ghost of Glendale. He’s an adventurer, a huge Scotsman. And he has a great sense of humour. He’d be able to rub two sticks together to create fire. He’d certainly light my fire!
Who is your favourite author and which of their books is your favourite, and why?
It depends on the genre of course but I always come back to Georgette Heyer whose wonderful books have, over many years, made me laugh, made me cry and healed my wounds. Which book? That varies as well as I read her books over and over again but of late The Unknown Ajax has risen to the top. I think one’s taste changes over time and what was once a favourite is now much-loved but not the one.
What is the first thing you can remember writing?
History essays at school. Many years later a short story which began life as ‘The Hundred Acre Wood’ and underwent several metamorphoses. It was eventually sold as ‘It Takes All Sorts’. I still smile whenever I see a sugar mouse.
What other jobs have you done other than being an author?
I always did office work and ultimately became (even if I say so myself) an incredibly good PA to the Managing Director of a large group of companies. I only left that much-loved job due to relocation. The skill I learned as a touch typist in my late teens has been invaluable in my work as an author.
If you could get in a time machine and had one chance to travel, where would you go? (Backwards or forwards!)
Since the past was lacking in the conveniences of the present and I cannot know what the future holds, and because I’m perfectly content where I am, I think I’ll stay here thank you.
If you could have one conversation with anyone, dead or alive, who would it be and why?
My mother. I don’t think I need to say anything else.
What are your favourite things to do?
Weather permitting, having lunch in the garden of a country pub overlooking a river.
What is the strangest thing that has ever happened to you?
I became a writer!
Name one book you think everyone should read?!
follow the tour
Thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me on to the tour, and to Natalie for coming and chatting with us.
I’ll be back again a bit later today so keep your eyes open.