February first – a blog hop. It’s called The Next Big Thing (as you probably
guessed) and if you haven’t come across one before (and I hadn’t) then the
idea is straightforward - and not dissimilar to a chain letter.
tagged by the wonderful Nina Sankovitch, who’s a friend of one of my oldest
university buddies, but also - and more importantly in this context - the reader of
hundreds of books that she reviews on her website, Read All Day. Nina’s also
a writer and her 2010 book, Tolstoy and The Purple Chair: My Year of Magical Reading was published by HarperCollins. It tells the story of her lifetime of reading, and of one magical year when she read a book a day to rediscover how to live after the death of her oldest sister. Read about Nina's next big thing right here. It’s a delight
to be tagged by Nina.
for the preliminaries, onto The Next Big Thing, which in my case, is the
soon-to-be-released (April 3rd) novel, Powder Burn.
the working title of your book?
just gave that away, Powder Burn! It’s the first of a new series of Burn books featuring Sam Blackett, a
Vermont backcountry girl and wannabe investigative journalist.
did the idea come from for the book?
always wanted to write a book with a kick-ass female hero, and when I saw Kill Bill I realised it was time to get
on with it. I started well, but then life intervened - that was about ten years
genre does your book fall under?
actors would you choose to play the hero in a movie rendition?
ass female hero? I guess Angelina Jolie virtually made that role her own for a
while, but right now I’d take Jennifer Lawrence.
the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
If Dragon Tattoo’s Mikael Blomkvist and the Hunger Games’ Katniss
Everdeen could have a love-child, she’d probably be a lot like Sam Blackett.
your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
be self-published. I’ve had some great agents in the past, but as something of
a control freak, I get along a lot better now that it’s all my fault when it
goes belly up. Or not.
did it take you to write the first draft of your manuscript?
six months – and then another ten years for the next six drafts.
other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
you can probably tell from the one line synopsis that I’m hoping fans of The
Hunger Games and the Millennium Trilogy will like the books – although those
books set a very high bar for comparisons.
What inspired you to write this book?
four sources of inspiration for this book, the movie Kill Bill got me going, so that’s one. I love the way Lee Child’s
Jack Reacher moves around the USA and happens into an adventure wherever he
lands up. I see the Burn series with Sam
Blackett in the same light, she’s travelling, researching and looking for
stories, and some of them are going to land her in a world of trouble. Thirdly,
Stieg Larsson’s Millennium Trilogy (Dragon Tattoo etc) had a strength, independence
and crusade-for-truth aspect to the investigations of Lisbeth Salander and Mikael Blomkvist that I wanted to capture. And finally, I think the first book in Suzanne Collins trilogy, The
Hunger Games is possibly the best genre book I’ve ever read. The writing is so
smooth, the action, characterisation, plotting and theme are all just so perfectly
realised. I think it’s a model for how good genre books can be, and the one I
look up to every day I sit down at the computer.
else about your book might pique the reader's interest?
rights of an earlier draft of the novel were optioned by Working Title Films - Les
Misérables, Love Actually, Billy Elliot etc. – but now they’re
available again, if anyone’s interested...
And now I
get the huge pleasure of passing the torch to four of my favourite writers. Here they are (in alphabetical order) - go check 'em out!
spent the majority of her working life running an interactive media company,
designing and building software and websites, mainly for education. Her company
was sold in 2000, and although she continued working for another 5 years, she
also fulfilled a lifelong ambition of buying a property in Italy, and
then found the time to fulfil her second ambition of writing a novel.
The book proved very
successful, and by February 2012 it had reached #1 in the Amazon charts (all
genres). It remained there for four weeks. It also hit the top spot on the
Waterstones ebook charts, and remained there throughout August, September and
most of October 2012. Rachel now has a publishing deal in the US and
Canada, and the foreign rights in Only the Innocent have been sold in several
countries, including France, Germany, Brazil and Russia. An audio version of
the book is also in development.
has worked in law enforcement for over 25 years, in a variety of different roles (on the front-line and back in the office), which may be why the darker side of life tends to emerge in her writing. In 2005, she was long-listed for the Crime Writers Association Debut Dagger Award, which gave her the push to independently-publish the psychological thriller Hamelin’s Child, closely followed by a young adult fantasy novel and a collection of previously-print-published short stories.
The sequel to Hamelin's Child was published in January 2013. At present Debbie plays with police computers during the day. The rest of the time she’s working on a couple of other novels and several short stories.
a 1,000,000 copy New York Times and Amazon bestselling author and a Romantic
Times award winner. Ruth’s highly praised fiction has "been called
brilliant," "steamy," "stylishly written,"
"richly plotted," "first-class entertainment" and "a
sure thing" and been translated into 19 languages, sold in 30 countries,
and honoured by the Literary Guild and the Book Of The Month Club. In their
e-book editions, Ruth's novels have risen to #1 on the Movers And Shakers List
and been featured on Ereader News Today, Pixel of Ink and Kindle Nation Daily.
With her husband,
Michael, Ruth indulges her wild side and writes bestselling thrillers with
vivid characters, international backgrounds and compelling plots. Their
thrillers have made numerous appearances in the top 3 of Kindle’s Movers
& Shakers list. Publisher’s Weekly called Ruth's and Michael's
thrillers "Slick and sexy with all the sure elements of a big seller
written by pros who know how to tell a story.”
15 thrillers, 60 short stories, four comics series, and six screenplays. He
lives in the Appalachian Mountains of North Carolina, where he tends an organic
garden, successfully eludes stalkers, and generally lives the dream. Entering
the digital era with a vengeance, Nicholson is
releasing original titles and collections while conspiring to release
interactive books in the near future, building audio files, video, and
collaborative fiction projects.
Nicholson won the grand
prize in the international Writers of the Future contest in 1999. That same
year, he was first runner-up for the Darrell Award. He studied Creative Writing
at Appalachian State University and UNC-Chapel Hill. He has been an officer of
Mystery Writers of America and Horror Writers Association and is a member of
International Thriller Writers and inaugural member of the Killer Thriller