Q & A: Katie Fforde 

I’m ecstatic to have the lovely Katie Fforde here today for a Q & A! Her latest book, Recipe For Love is out TODAY! 

You can find it on Amazon.

Look at this gorgeous cover! I swear all of her book covers are just beautiful.

Q & A 

1. What’s a typical writing day for you look like? Describe your perfect writing environment.

 A typical writing day for me starts early, but with a lot of procrastination. I look at my emails, twitter, and play several games of Spider patience. When I’m up against a deadline, I try to avoid twitter until after I’ve done my work – about 1000 words a day. I really like writing when away from home. There are far fewer distractions then. I love going on writing retreats and always get lots done. When all your friends are writing away like mad, you have to as well. I aim to get 2 thousand words a day done then.

2. How did you get started writing? Was it something that you’ve always loved?

 I was given a prod by my mother. I’d talked about wanting to write (expecting to wait until my children were a bit bigger, my daughter was only two) but she obviously felt now was the time and gave me a writing kit for Christmas. She made it up herself and gathered pens, correction paper (Tippex) a dictionary, a thesaurus, a ream of paper and other bits and pieces and put them in a box file. I made it my New Year’s resolution for that year to get started. I could only write when my husband was home from the sea and I gave myself an hour a day. I loved it! The hour would stretch as long as it was allowed to. But it took me eight years to get published.

3. Who are your favorite writers/inspirations?

 Georgette Heyer was a great inspiration but I didn’t realise that until someone said they saw her influence in my writing. She is one of our greatest historical novelists and I write contemporary fiction so I assumed there was no connection.  

4.  Anything you can tell us about upcoming projects?

 I am just about to start writing a Christmas novella which will come out as an e book. It’s set in Somerby, which is the big house that appears in Wedding Season, Love Letters and Recipe for Love. Several of the characters that appear in those books will be there as well as a new romantic story. I think it will be fun. Then I’ll start my next novel (number 24) which is going to have a farming background.

5.  Normally how do you develop plots/characters? Brief us on your process.

 Characters come easily to me but plots are harder. There are rare but lovely times when the story bubbles out and I think, this happens and then happens but more often, the story reveals itself to me bit by bit. The characters are more fun. I start with a theme and then think, what sort of woman would be in this situation? Why is she in that situation? That process is fun. Then I have to think about her man. Men are harder because, as we women know, there are very few eligible bachelors about so if a man is to be single, he has to have a good reason for it.

6.  Favorite character from one of your own novels?

 I think Polly, from Living Dangerously, my first novel, is my favourite. She had my job, my keep fit class, my fondness for jumble sales and is very like me. She is/was younger and much more attractive than I am but we do have the same sort of hair.

7.  Preferred method for readers to contact you?

 Twitter is probably the best way for readers to contact me. They can email me via my website but they don’t always get through. Twitter always works, I think.

8. On average, how long does it take you to write a book?

 It takes about 6-8 months to write the first draft but then there is editing, (which would be things like, we need another character, or something, fortunately that doesn’t happen so often these days) and then copy editing, which is the little details like, I have given February 5 weeks in it! Then after that, proof reading. After all that is done, copies will go out to magazines and things for reviews. The whole process takes about a year.

9. Which one of your characters do you relate to the most?

I always relate most to the character I am writing. When I’m in her head so much, I almost feel I am her. I loved being a midwife in Summer at Sea but then I loved being a gardner in A Secret Garden which won’t be out until February in the UK.

11. If writing wasn’t your career what would you be doing?

 If I wasn’t a writer I probably would have been a counsellor or something like that. I love listening to people.

12. What’s the best compliment that you’ve received about your work?

 I had a lovely email recently from a woman who’d gone through treatment for breast cancer. She said she couldn’t sleep and so every night would read my books and feel she was with a friend. It was a very moving email to receive.

Thanks so much to Katie for answering my questions, it was truly a pleasure!

About the Author: 

I am a writer, mother, wife and for those who don’t know, a struggling flamenco dancer. I’m not quite sure how I juggle it all!? Here you can get to know more about me, my hobbies, favourite recipes, my writing tips, general ponderings, the lengths I will go to in the name of research and more…

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