Thursday, January 10, 2013
Author Spotlight - Teresa Ashby
I'm so pleased to welcome Teresa Ashby to our blog today. As well as being a lovely friend, Teresa is a phenomenally successful writer, with more than 2,000 short stories and articles to her name, as well as a number of novels.
Tell our readers a little bit about yourself.
I can’t remember a time when I didn’t love both reading and writing and decided quite early on that I wanted to be a writer (just after I realised I could never be a nun and even if I could, I was never going to look like Audrey Hepburn). Although I started out trying to write novels, the short stories took over, but I still like to involve myself in something longer when I get the chance.
What number book is this? First? 100th? 200th?(Nora only!)
I really and truly have no idea. I have written so many over the years. But if you’re talking about published ones, I’ve had eleven in large print. The latest one is out this month The Girl From Yesterday.
Everyone who writes knows it's not easy - what methods do you use to keep at it on days when it would be so much easier to go shoe shopping?
I’ve never enjoyed shopping for shoes – does that make me weird? Not that I don’t love shoes, I do. But since I broke a bone in my foot I haven’t been able to wear the high heels I love. Sorry – straying from the question. I write best if I’m sitting in the car with no distractions, but that doesn’t happen very often so it’s a matter of bum on seat and trying not to be lured by the internet.
What is your top promo tip for other authors?
I wish I had one! It’s something I still struggle with. I do find it a turn off though when people are too pushy, so I tend not to post loads of messages on Facebook or Twitter in case it has a negative effect. Having said that, if you don’t blow your own trumpet (as my dear old mum used to say) no one else will do it for you. It’s a fine line I think.
How does writing fit into your day? Or does your day fit in around your writing?
Writing has to fit in with my day. I did go through a period of being a full time writer, but it didn’t work for me. Although it was very nice, I found myself drifting. The more I have going on in my life and the busier I am, the more focused I am when it comes to writing.
Is there a book you haven't written yet that you're dying to? What genre?
I have always, since the very beginning, wanted to write a book about a family gathering and explore all those wonderful complex relationships. I have a few notes which I add to from time to time and one day I will write it!
Keeping fit: Do you have an exercise regime to counterbalance all those hours sitting at a computer?
Sorry, me? Keep fit? I used to walk my dogs for two hours every day whatever the weather, but now it’s more of a half hour stroll than a five mile hike. I swim once a week, does that count?
Could you be friends with any of your heroines?
They’ve all been friends – at least that’s how I feel about them. You get to know them so well that they feel like real people. But if I had to choose just one, it would be Cara who was in The Call of Home and also The Doctor’s Decision.
Have you ever written a hero you'd be happy to run off with?
Yes! Matt in The Call of Home. I really fell for him. He’s still my favourite hero. And to celebrate being invited here by the lovely Minxes, I’m giving away The Call of Home free on Kindle from the 10th to the 12th January.
Do you have any tips, tricks or sacrificial rituals you do when you hit a story roadblock?
I have many half completed books and stories where I’ve hit a roadblock and left them (I think sometimes that my mind must look like a scene from The Walking Dead with all the abandoned vehicles on the roads representing all the broken down stories). However, if I’m at a point where I know where I’m going, but not sure how to get there, I leave a gap and carry on. Often the answer will come later and you can fill in the blanks.
Finally, can you please tell us a little bit about your latest book?
Out on Kindle now is Doctor’s Decision which is about Australian doctor Cara, who was also in The Call of Home.
When ship’s doctor, Australian Cara Stanford meets trauma consultant Greg Harding on a busy quayside, the sparks fly! Despite the instant chemistry, both know that they won’t meet again after the ship sails. Cara will be returning to Australia as soon as her stint on the Princess Helena finishes and Greg has his work cut out caring for his widowed sister in law and her little boy.
The Princess Helena runs into trouble at sea and Cara finds herself coping with many casualties. Greg has to overcome his fear of helicopters to go to the rescue and when he is winched aboard he finds Cara is hurt too. He takes care of her as she recuperates, but just when Cara starts to let her guard down, a near tragedy brings her to her senses and thinking there is no future for them, she returns to Australia – alone.
The Doctor's Decision is available from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com
And Teresa has very generously made The Call of Home free to download from Kindle up until the 12th January from Amazon.co.uk and from Amazon.com
Thank you for visiting the Minxes today, Teresa.
You can find out more about Teresa on her blog, or follow her on Twitter.