Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Meet the Author - Rose McClelland

It's time  for another of my Meet the Author interviews, and today I've been talking to Rose McClelland, author of The Break-Up Test.

Want to find out more about Rose?  Then check out this fabulous interview with the lady herself!  


Rose McClelland lives in Belfast and writes women’s fiction.
After six years of taking her writing seriously (camping out in coffee shops and scribbling away in the corner), she is delighted to see her first book ‘The Break-Up Test’ on Kindle.
Rose wrote a short play which was directed by Rawlife Theatre Company and performed in The Black Box Theatre, Belfast. She writes book reviews for website ‘Judging Covers’, and writes a mixture of film reviews, theatre reviews and articles for her blog.
Rose loves reading, dancing, yoga, cinema, theatre and rummaging around charity shops. She has discovered a new-found love of cooking and would love to take part on ‘Come Dine With Me’.
Rose is currently writing her fourth novel.

So, Rose, when did you first realise that writing was what you wanted to do?

I remember announcing to my mum at the grand old age of ten that I wanted to be a writer.  I also remember announcing at GCSE level that I wanted to be a journalist. Whilst living in London I attempted various creative writing courses, started a manuscript and then let it hide in a bottom drawer. Finally I sat down, started writing and kept going. 

Tell us a little bit about your debut novel, The Break-Up Test.

The Break-up Test is a ten-point list that Jamie devises together with Amy, Sarah and Beth to try to give them success in their love lives. It’s a story of breaking up, bouncing back and possibly finding new love.

How do you create your characters? Do you base them on people you know or have maybe met along the way somewhere, or do they just come from out of nowhere? From your own imagination?

I tend to sit down with lots of magazines first of all and play with images.  Somehow that triggers my imagination.  I have a theme first and I know what subject I want to write about before I think about the characters.  Then I usually draw from personal experiences and use some traits I have and turn them up to the max.  I suppose I just let the ideas come and go – I play around until something clicks.

How do you get your inspiration to create the stories you write? For example, for me, I can hear a record on the radio or just be out walking somewhere and something will trigger off an idea that eventually grows into a story. Does that happen to you? What inspires you to keep on writing?

I will have a theme I want to investigate first.  For example, for my second novel I wanted to look at jealousy between females. I also wanted to look at the idea that how we view ourselves is usually very different to how other people view us.  I need a good hefty theme to look at and learn from – it has to be something I can get my teeth into for the length of time I’ll be spending with the novel.

What books do you yourself enjoy reading? Any favourite authors?

I am a chick-lit fan through and through. I also love contemporary novels that lean towards chick-lit.  My favourite authors are Michela O’Brien, Paige Toon, Lisa Jewell, Mike Gayle, David Nicholls, Marian Keyes… the list goes on.

I myself love listening to music when I write - I just can't write in silence! Do you have any habits or quirks linked to your writing?

Oh I am the opposite! I’d love to have nice soothing tunes in the background but I need total silence when I write! I find that when I’m writing, there is too much going on in my head as it is, so I need complete quiet otherwise I get distracted.  Other quirks – I need to set out my table with lap-top, water, coffee, nail polish, hand-cream and nail file. Once I’ve done my nails, I feel relaxed enough to start typing. 

Okay, let's find out a little bit more about Rose McClelland - favourite bands/singers/music, favourite TV programmes, favourite food... tell us some of your favourite things.

Favourite music – I love really chilled out stuff like Corinne Bailey Rae, Lene Marlin and Zero 7. 
However, I do love blaring the dance tunes now and again and having a good bop!

I’m not a massive TV watcher but I do love sticking on a DVD/film now and again. Chick flicks of course!

Favourite food – now this is a tricky one, because I’m prone to a few strange concoctions now and again. I am going through a ‘chocolate and apple’ stage – ie. chocolate and apple at the same time.  I dread to think what cravings I would ever have if I got pregnant! 

When you're not writing, what do you like to do? How do you like to relax?

Cooking is a great way to relax! All that repetitive chopping calms the head I think! Watching a film helps me to totally zone out.  Reading is my preferred chill-out time though.  There’s nothing quite as brilliant as finding a book you love and becoming totally engrossed.

Can you tell us anything about what you're working on right now? Any future projects in the pipeline?

Yes, I am writing my fourth novel at the moment. It’s set in the theatre world and is all about the sizzling chemistry that goes on behind the scenes.

My second novel ‘How to Look Like You’ is due out on 5th July. It’s about ‘frenemies’ – two girls who are jealous of each other. They look at the other girl and think she has the perfect life, but they don’t know what’s actually going on behind closed doors.

Rose, it's been an absolute pleasure to have you here on my blog.  That was a great interview, and I wish you all the luck in the world with 'The Break-Up Test', and with 'How to Look Like You', and, of course, with all your future novels!

You can grab yourself a copy of The Break-Up Test from Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com.

And you can also contact Rose over on her Facebook page - Rose McClelland - Facebook

On Twitter - @RoseMcclelland

And over on Goodreads - Rose McClelland - Goodreads

You can also check out her blog - http://www.rosiesrag.blogspot.co.uk/

Once again, Rose, thank you so much for a fabulous interview!



  1. Jan BrigdenMay 15, 2012

    Fabulous interview, ladies! I loved The Break Up Test and cannot wait to read more of Rose's novels. Loving reading all the personal stuff too. Always nice to be privy to an author's background/route to publication etc. I share your need for complete silence when writing, Rose, although when I'm typing up edits etc, I have those tunes belting out full swing! Best of luck with your future novels, ladies x x

  2. Thanks, Kim and Jan! Glad you enjoyed the interview. :-) xx

  3. Thanks Kim & Jan! This was fun to do :o)