Tomorrow is e-book publication day for Morton S Gray’s second novel for Choc Lit – The Truth Lies Buried – and I’m really pleased that she’s been able to spare me a few moments for a chat…
Good morning Morton and welcome. Can I start, as always, by asking you a little about yourself?
Good morning, Jo. I’m so pleased to be joining you today as I have double publication success to celebrate – the paperback of my novel The Girl on the Beach (published 10 April 2018) and the eBook launch of my new novel The Truth Lies Buried (published 1 May 2018).
I live in Worcestershire, UK with my husband, youngest son and Lily, our little white dog. My eldest son lives nearby.
Have you always wanted to be a writer? How did your journey begin?
Ever since my nan gave me a box full of Enid Blyton’s books, which someone had passed on to her, I have loved reading. My early school compositions were full of gold ingots, big brothers and caves like in the Famous Five books. As well as encouraging my reading, my nan taught me how to knit and crochet and engendered a love of crafts in general. We also used to settle down on Sunday afternoons to watch films. Consequently, it is no surprise that my first novel, written when I was fourteen, closely resembles an Errol Flynn film, complete with galleons, swords and a dashing hero.
I got top grades in my English language and literature examinations at secondary school, but went off to university to study business studies and German. I got a graduate job in the electricity industry and stayed there for sixteen years, where the writing I did mainly consisted of reports, board minutes and training manuals. I left this career to be a full-time therapist, specializing in clinical hypnotherapy, Reiki, acupressure massage and energy field therapy.
It wasn’t until I had my second son that I returned to writing. I wasn’t very well following his birth and had to give up my therapy business. I entered and won a short story competition and began to wonder if I could maybe write. The rest, as they say, is history.
What advice would you give to anyone thinking of writing a novel?
I’d say go for it if you have a passion to write.
Enter competitions – it was a short story competition win that convinced me to give writing a go and another competition win, Choc Lit Publishing’s Search for a Star competiton that gave me my publishing break.
If you know the genre you want to write in it is worth considering joining an association for that style of writing. I joined the Romantic Novelists’ Association and their wonderful New Writer’s Scheme, which enabled me to have a critique of a novel for each year I was a member until I achieved publication. This advice from already published novelists enabled me to revise my work to publishable standards.
Have plenty of stamina and persistence, as a writing career rarely happens overnight. You have to be willing to put in hours of work to achieve success. Even when your novel is accepted for publication, the publisher is likely to want their own edits done on the manuscript. Needless to say you have to love your story, as you end up reading it so many times.
Build up a social media presence as you go along, as you will need it when you are eventually publicising your book.
Will there be more books in the Borteen Secrets series?
I have many more ideas for books in this series. Many of the inhabitants of my fictional seaside town of Borteen are already clamouring for their stories to be told!
If you were cast away on a desert island, which four things couldn’t you live without?
1. Books – Both to read and notebooks to write in. Guess that means I’d need pens (oops that’s three counted as one!)
2. Chocolate – I love it.
3. Sun cream – I’m very fair skinned
4. Coffee – my family say a strong coffee a day keeps me human. Lol.
And finally, you are hosting a dinner party and can invite four celebrity guests (dead or alive). Who would you choose and why?
1. Brian Cox, the physicist – as I find his theories and knowledge fascinating (and he’s not bad to look at either).
2. Kirsty Allsopp – I love her programmes and her sense of humour.
3. Alice Roberts – Again I would love to discuss her scientific theories with her.
4. Kit Harrington – I just like looking at him and will have to base a character on him soon.
About the Author
Morton lives with her husband, two sons and Lily, the tiny white dog, in Worcestershire, U.K. She has been reading and writing fiction for as long as she can remember, penning her first attempt at a novel aged fourteen. She is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and The Society of Authors.
Her debut novel ‘The Girl on the Beach’ was published as an ebook in January 2017, after she won The Choc Lit Publishing Search for a Star competition. The story follows a woman with a troubled past as she tries to unravel the mystery surrounding her son’s headteacher, Harry Dixon. This book is available as a paperback from 10 April 2018.
Morton’s second book for Choc Lit ‘The Truth Lies Buried’ is published as an eBook on 1 May 2018. Another romantic suspense novel, the book tells the story of Jenny Simpson and Carver Rodgers as they uncover secrets from their past.
Morton previously worked in the electricity industry in committee services, staff development and training. She has a Business Studies degree and is a fully qualified clinical hypnotherapist and Reiki master. She also has diplomas in Tuina acupressure massage and energy field therapy. She enjoys crafts, history and loves tracing family trees. Having a hunger for learning new things is a bonus for the research behind her books.
Twitter – @MortonSGray
Facebook Page – Morton S. Gray Author – https://www.facebook.com/mortonsgray/
About the Books
The Girl on the Beach
Who is Harry Dixon?
When Ellie Golden meets Harry Dixon, she can’t help but feel she recognises him from somewhere. But when she finally realises who he is, she can’t believe it – because the man she met on the beach all those years before wasn’t called Harry Dixon. And, what’s more, that man is dead.
For a woman trying to outrun her troubled past and protect her son, Harry’s presence is deeply unsettling – and even more disconcerting than coming face to face with a dead man, is the fact that Harry seems to have no recollection of ever having met Ellie before. At least that’s what he says …
But perhaps Harry isn’t the person Ellie should be worried about. Because there’s a far more dangerous figure from the past lurking just outside of the new life she has built for herself, biding his time, just waiting to strike.
Purchasing links for ‘The Girl on the Beach’ at http://www.choc-lit.com/dd-product/the-girl-on-the-beach/
The Truth Lies Buried
Two children in a police waiting room, two distressed mothers, a memory only half remembered …
When Jenny Simpson returns to the seaside town of Borteen, her childhood home, it’s for a less than happy reason. But it’s also a chance for her to start again.
A new job leads to her working for Carver Rodgers, a man who lives alone in a house that looks like it comes from the pages of a fairy tale – until you see the disaster zone inside …
As Jenny gets to know Carver she begins to unravel the sadness that has led to his chaotic existence. Gradually they realise they have something in common that is impossible to ignore – and it all links back to a meeting at a police station many years before.
Could the truth lie just beneath their feet?
Pre-order link for ‘The Truth Lies Buried’ at http://www.choc-lit.com/dd-product/the-truth-lies-buried/