I’m delighted to be a stop on the tour for Hidden Island by Angela Corner today! Read on for more information about the book and a fabulous guest post from the author.
About the book:
Sex. Drugs. Murder.
Hidden behind the crystal seas and beautiful beaches of a Greek Island dark and dangerous secrets lurk. Beckett has had his fill of adrenaline fuelled criminal investigation and with a broken body and damaged career goes to the Greek Island of Farou to head up the Criminal Investigation Bureau. Serious crime is rare, the weather is great and the beer is cold but his ‘retirement’ is cut short when a pagan cult resurrects and bodies start showing up.
With doubts about his mental and physical ability to do the job, a British police detective is sent to help with the investigation. DI Lee Harper is everything Beckett is not – young, ambitious and by the book.
As well as tackling the new case Beckett must overcome the demons from his past.
Family loyalty, power and money are at the source of the investigation where appearance is everything and nothing is what is seems.
Can Beckett and Harper work together to find justice for the victims?
Will the idyllic island ever be the same again?
Sometimes paradise can be hell.
Scriptwriting v novel writing
The Hidden Island is my first venture into novel writing – apart from a Hollyoaks spin off novel I did a few years ago – but I spent nearly ten years writing scripts for soap operas, Hollyoaks mainly and a handful for Eastenders.
So how different is it writing for television and writing a novel?
Scriptwriting for a long running series obviously gives you less creative freedom and input than writing a novel. You are writing about pre-existing characters, their back stories already invented, and sending them down story avenues that you and perhaps twenty other writers have discussed, argued about and eventually agreed over (or not as the case maybe). You can be asked to write about characters you don’t enjoy writing for and to make characters do things you don’t think they would do. But also when you’ve worked on a TV show for a few years there will be characters you have created yourself and storylines that you gave birth to that you and the other writers have developed and breathed life into over many months. There is a huge sense of satisfaction at seeing your ideas explode onto the TV screen as well as frustration if the team decides the story should go in a different direction to the one you intended. There are also practical restrictions when writing for most TV series. You might want to send ten characters on holiday to Barbados for an adventure but finances will only allow you three characters (many actors are only paid per the number of episodes they appear in) on a day trip to Rhyl and they might not be the three characters you want to write about because of actor’s holidays. You also have to contend with censorship – particularly on a pre-watershed show – many words and acts are out of bounds, and the interpretation of the director and the actors. Every TV show is the result of a massive team of people, not always with the same vision as the writer.
Writing a novel could not be more different. You have total freedom. There are no budget restrictions. Your characters can live and travel anywhere. You can have a cast of thousands – not necessarily a good idea unless you are incredibly good at planning and organising and want to write a 500 pager. You are playing god with a world entirely of your own creation. But this freedom is incredibly scary. Every story needs its own rules and boundaries to make sense. Writing on a TV show means you have other writers to consult, other episodes to fit in around, script editors giving their input every couple of weeks, producers giving notes and asking for changes, and immovable deadlines that you have to hit. Writing for a TV show is a team sport. Writing a novel is like a solo voyage around the world. Exciting, scary, full of potential disasters but incredibly rewarding when you get to the end. Writing on a TV show there isn’t ever an end, though your part in it might finish, there is always someone else to carry it on. It can never be solely yours whereas a novel is the writer’s child. For good and for bad.
Check out the other stops on the tour!