Good morning Kathryn and welcome. Can I start, as always, by asking you a little about yourself?
Hi Jo, and thank you for having me on your blog. It seems quite some time since I walked through the doors of the wonderful world of interviews and blogs, and I feel quite at home!
So, recently married to the love of my life, having at last found happiness (and that last piece of jigsaw I was painstakingly trying to find) I am starting to settle down and continue this lifelong journey of mine – one which involves my passion for writing. I guess my life has been a series of books, many chapters that have usually ended on a cliff-hanger. And now? Well, I’m still a passionate writer, always soul searching, plotting and discovering, but now I’m a happy and passionate writer, content with my life, no longer searching for that ‘something’ that was always missing. I’m 47, and I really didn’t think I’d ever find my soul mate. Then one day, during a three-way conversation on Twitter with a farmer-friend and a friend of his, there I was, single and particularly lonely, wondering what lay ahead, when suddenly I realised a spark had been ignited and our chat on social media was to change my life forever. Inadvertently introducing us, my farmer-friend had no idea that his own friend and I had made contact privately, and history was inevitably in the making. Two years later in May of this year, Jon and I married in Lake Garda and look forward to spending the rest of our lives celebrating our union. Perhaps thanks to Twitter…definitely thanks to our farmer-friend (whom we now see regularly). But definitely thanks to my writing, because without it, Jon wouldn’t have asked me questions about my books, that led to us finding our soul-mate, in each other.
I have a beautiful daughter, Amy, who’s 17 and studies animal care at college, and I have a very handsome step-son studying International Business at university. I think it’s safe to say, the latter half of my 40s have been very different to the former, and I now walk around with pride and contentment after what seemed to be a rather tumultuous decade pre-mid 40s.
When did you first decide you wanted to write and how did you begin that journey?
When I was ten years old, I won a short story competition at Primary school. I was awarded a packet of felt-tip pens and a colouring book. I was on top of the world that day when a local author came into the school to make the presentations. I knew then where my vocation lay, and even though it was many years later in 2007 when I was to publish my first novel, I spent many hours writing stories and articles for magazines, studying creative writing, and going to bed with a Dictionary and Thesaurus, not to mention the Writers’ & Artists’ Year Book. I recommend it to anyone; it beats counting sheep any day, or night…!
Who are your favourite authors and have any of them inspired your writing in any way?
I have read so many wonderful books over the years and I could reel off list after list of authors whose work I’ve enjoyed – Pauline Barclay for one, CL Taylor another, Lynda Renham is another favourite of mine. I have recently been engrossed in crime writer, Simon Kernick’s work; he really knows how to write a damn good, gritty page turner, and I can honestly say that his books (he has many available) have most definitely inspired me to continue working on my current novel. I’d almost given up on it, if I’m honest, but I’ve always wanted to write a thriller, and I’m still not sure whether it will fall under the psychological thriller genre, or whether it will be something else – I need to have that discussion with my editor at some point – but I’m enjoying the plot and have got into the characters’ heads. So, I’m quite excited about finishing it and after taking a break for far too long, I feel I’m starting to get my motivation back. All I can say is, stand aside, Mr Kernick.
Beach or city girl? Where are your favourite holiday destinations and why?
Can I be awkward and say, pool? I don’t do sand, you see, and I don’t like the sea because I have a phobia of seaweed (even though I eat it from the Chinese…mmm, delicious stuff). I could lie on a sun-lounger all day in scorching sun, smothered in oil, preferably a few steps away from a refreshing swimming pool. My husband, Jon, doesn’t care much for sunbathing so we tend to compromise when we go on holiday. I don’t mind having a wander in a nice town, but I’m not a city girl. Never have been. We got married in a stunning lakeside resort called Gardone Riviera, which sits amongst the hilly countryside on the eastern shores of Lake Garda. Perhaps because it was our wedding and honeymoon destination I may sound a little biased, but it really is the most beautiful place in the world as far as I’m concerned.
Are you able to tell us a little about what you are working on at the moment?
I should start by telling you that my next book will be penned in my new name, Kathryn Hall, whereas my previous books are in the name of Kathryn Brown. The book I’m currently writing is about Lydia, a seemingly contented woman in her 30s, believing the world to be her oyster and her future a breath of fresh air. But things take a sinister turn for her and she realises she no longer has the comfort of the gentle world she lives in, but has to fend for herself. We start to see the stronger side of her character when her world falls apart, and we soon get to understand that this woman who once relied on those around her, can very easily push them away. And when she does, she finds herself in dire need of help. The book is written in first person, mainly from Lydia’s point of view, but I’m afraid, for now, that’s all I’m saying. The plot may change a little – I have a habit of changing my mind – so for fear of misleading any future readers, I shall leave it there. There’s nothing more intriguing than leaving the punter guessing!
And lastly, if you had to spend a whole year on a desert island, what would your ‘must haves’ be and why?
Blimey, that’s a difficult question! Some very large bottles of wine for starters! Obviously, my husband would be there, so in a nutshell I wouldn’t need anything else. I guess on a desert island there would be no phone signal, but if there was, then I’d have my phone. Then again, where would I charge it up? I have a stuffed bunny rabbit that goes everywhere with me, much to Jon’s chagrin, as she even accompanied us on our honeymoon. Carrot – that’s her name – has been my “comfort blanket” since I was five years old, so she is definitely a ‘must have’. Well, I suppose if I can take my mobile phone and charge it up, I can also use my Kindle. So, with my husband, my bunny rabbit, my mobile and my Kindle, not to mention those bottles of wine, actually, life on a desert island doesn’t sound so bad.
BOOKS BY KATHRYN
Discovery at Rosehill (1st in the series) – paperback and Kindle – paranormal romance
Secrets at Rosehill (2nd in series) – paperback and Kindle (you can actually buy both books together) – paranormal romance
Bedknobs and Bachelors – paperback and Kindle – romantic comedy
Nightingale Woods – paperback and Kindle – romantic comedy