Welcome, Glynis Smy…
Can you tell me a little about yourself?
I live in the coastal town of Dovercourt, Essex, with my husband and mother. We have three adult children, one in Canada, and two in Essex. Our adorable granddaughter keeps us on our toes, and look forward to another arriving in February 2015. I enjoy card making for charity, fishing, cross stitch, and of course, writing.
What was the first story you wrote?
It was Ripper, My Love, a romance suspense in the Victorian era.
Were you inspired by someone or something?
I would like to say Jack the Ripper, but it was more of a statement made than the person. Someone said what an evil person he/she had been. I replied that somebody loved them once, and that was it, the idea kicked in for a short story but a novel developed.
Why do you write?
Why? Because I love it, and there are characters in my head I cannot shut up at night. They force me to scribble down words at a frantic pace!
Can you tell us about your newest book?
The Penny Portrait is due for release December 2014. It is based in my hometown, although I started writing it in Cyprus (where I lived for eight years until 2013). My favourite place to walk is along the rough coastal paths of the beach, and it holds fond memories of my father who passed two years ago.
When Elle Buchanan is abandoned by her parents in her sixteenth year, she has no choice but to run from the leering eyes of their landlord. Earlham’s beach in the town of Dovercourt, holds memories of her childhood and becomes her home. Hiding out in a rundown shepherd shack she takes stock of her life, and finds friendship in the form of a crippled male, Stanley.
Through various friendships she is able to follow her love of art and earn from her skill. Under the guidance of Angus Argyle, a local art tutor, she thrives. His sharp eye spots a charcoal drawing in her portfolio, and knows the naked man Elle etched. She tells of how they met, and Angus sells the drawing on to its model with the promise that they would say nothing.
Elle struggles with the loss of friends, friendship, and love. Growing up alone she is naïve, and her innocence loses her a love she so desperately seeks.
Will Elle have to give up her dream for love, or will love find a way into her life?
How did you come up with the story?
Dad had Alzheimer’s and I sat reminiscing about my childhood walks with him, and I wanted to capture the feeling of abandonment that the disease gave me when it took him from me. He saved me from the tidal dikes one day, and became my hero as he carried me on his back across the rushing waters.
I met my husband in the same town, and we walked there as young lovers, I wanted to capture the romance, angst, and emotional patterns of young love.
I played there with my best friend who died twenty years ago, and during the reflective moments, that was the place my mind took me, so I tried to capture friendship and loss.
I really cannot think why I chose art as my character’s pathway in life, I cannot paint to save my life!
So all in all the story is a plot of emotions based upon my inner-self, about a place that some see as desolate but I see it as a giver of life.
What genre best fits for the book?
Historical Romance – Victorian
What are some of the benefits and challenges to writing?
Benefits are of achieving a dream. Pocket money if you sell enough for profit, and the sense of satisfaction a reader has enjoyed your work. Challenges? Editing, marketing – the other side of writing.
Do you attend a writing group?
No, I am not a group person. I attended one once but felt so inadequate I couldn’t return.
Do you have someone to critique your work?
Yes, I have a couple of fab beta readers.
Are you working on something new at the moment?
My novel Maggie’s Child, has captured the imagination of a few readers and I received emails and messages wondering if there would be more about Maggie’s life. So, I am in the process of attempting a family saga. A BIG challenge!
Do you have any tips for aspiring writers?
Go for it, grab that pen and follow your dream. Build a presence on the Internet, learn from others, and do not be put off by those who have received rejections from publishers and agents. Self-publish, and carry on enjoying the dream!
What is your writing routine?
Grab time when I can. I no longer have the luxury of all day to myself, I literally have to grab moments, so there is no longer a routine.
Do you have an editing process?
- I read on computer – edit x3.
- I print off read through & edit x1
- I download to Kindle and read as a book (amazing how many glaring errors are found this way).
- I then hand over to beta readers
What do you enjoy the most/least about writing?
There is nothing I dislike, I enjoy the whole process – except marketing but that isn’t writing to me.
How important is it for you to share your writing?
At first it wasn’t something I focused upon, I just enjoyed my books for my own personal satisfaction. Slowly readers began to want more from me, and it became a need to share situation. My ego now loves sharing!
You were shortlisted for an award recently. Can you tell us all about it and how you felt etc?
When my book Maggie’s Child, reached the second round of the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award, I thought Christmas had arrived early. It was a true ego boost. I found courage to submit the book to the Festival of Romance New Talent scheme, and to my surprise and joy I found my name on the shortlist! This has instilled new courage and inspired me to keep writing. To know I now have ‘street cred’ within the writing community is thrilling.
Where can people go to read your work?
Amazon stores online are where my books are based at the moment. Although I do have plans to have paperbacks in independent bookstores in the future. I would also love them to be in libraries in the UK.
Ripper, My Love
Where can people find you on the internet?
Author Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/glynissmyauthor
Is there anything else you would like to share with your readers?
If folk are interested they can sign up for my newsletter. It is sent out four times a year unless I have extra news to share.
I support other authors and showcase books here:
Thank you, Glynis, it’s been lovely meeting you again, and good luck with your next book, The Penny Portrait, which is due for release December 2014.