Friday, April 17, 2015

Interview with British Author Claire Upton

Claire Upton
Norfolk/Cambridgeshire UK

Good morning, Claire. Welcome to Vision and Verse, the Place for Art and Authors. Tell us what have you written.
My debut novel was Twisted Fate, Ups-a-Daisy was out last year & last month (March 2015) Double Thinking Girl. I also have two children’s book that my daughter illustrated called, Nanny Pam Takes the Children to Feed the Ducks & Nanny Pam joins a Band.

What is your favorite genre to write?
I enjoy writing romantic comedy that also includes some difficulties that the main character needs to overcome. I once tried writing a crime thriller but I scared myself!

That's funny. Favorite food.
Difficult, I am gluten intolerant so my food choices have been reduced. But still has to be chocolate. Luckily, most of which is gluten free!

Tea or coffee?
Coffee. No question.

Pizza or ice cream?

Where would you like to visit?
New York & France & ultimately Rome.

Oh, Claire...Rome first! It is fabulous. Favorite musical artist.  Do you listen to music when you write?  What?
I am loving Sia at the moment. Sometimes I listen to music but mostly I listen to motivational stuff.

What makes you laugh?
Many things. Mostly things my children say.

Favorite work of art or sculpture.
It all depends on my mood but I have many different pictures & ornaments around the house. The Double Thinking book cover actually has two of my favourites on.

How old were you when you started writing?
I think I have always written little stories but the one that I remember most was Rachel Rabbit book that I did at school when I was about 10. The teacher made them all into stapled books & probably at that point I knew I wanted to be a writer.
Describe your perfect evening.
Probably just a quiet evening with candles burning, a snuggly blanket & a good book.

Where do you get your inspiration?
From anywhere. Most of my books come from a first line that I just get in my head & I know I need to start writing.

What do you do when you get a writer's block?
I get busy doing other things. I don’t just sit & wait because I find that blocks your mind more. If I go & potter about the house or go out for coffee, soon enough I am scribbling on scrap bits of paper & racing back to the laptop to write it all down.

Who is your favorite author?
My top five are Katie Fforde (the main character in my new book finds comfort in her books) Adele Parks, Cathy Kelly, Sue Welfare & Erica James.

Best book you ever read.
The only boy for me by Gil McNeil. It is one of the few books I have read over & over & I don’t think I have read any of hers since. It just stuck with me.

Last book you read.
To catch a Butterfly by T M Payne. I was lucky enough to attend a speaking event with her a couple of weeks ago & she is a fabulous person. I downloaded her book & wow! It blew my mind, she is extremely talented.

What would you do for a living if you weren’t a writer?
I was previously an Accounts Assistant, but got laid off from my job three weeks before Christmas 2014. So am now writing full-time.

Who is the one person who has influenced your personal life the most and why?
My ex mother-in-law (aka Nanny Pam). She is one of the hardest working, most positive & enthusiastic people I have ever known. She has a real love of life, even though she has had a very stressful life. I am honoured to know her & have her in our lives.

If you could sit down and have a conversation with ONE person, living or dead, real or fictional, who would it be and why?
My Grandad Bill. He died when I was 24, the last of my grandparents. We were very close & he was always an honest & positive person in my life. I miss our conversations & mostly his jolly laugh.

What advice would you give someone who aspired to be a writer?

Just to write. There is a lot of advice out there on the technical side, how to plot, etc. But all that aside, just write the story down. Don’t worry about who might read it just write because you need to get your story out of your head & down on paper.

Do you have some links for us to follow you?

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