On Meet the Author this week it's time to say hello to another of my fellow Harper Impulse authors, Emma Heatherington. Her latest book, Crazy for You, is released on February 13th, so, to find out more about Emma, read on!
I grew up in a very creative family which was nourished by our mother’s love of music and writing. I remember writing my first play when I was aged just 12 and I rehearsed my ‘cast’ under the stage at our local theatre which was undergoing an extension at the time. As a young teenager, my Sundays were spent writing songs so I guess writing has been a big part of my life for a long time. I chose a career in PR which also requires a creative spark but it wasn’t until I was approaching the age of 30 that I entered a short story competition in a magazine, won it, got my first book deal and here I am seven books later and embarking on a very exciting new journey with Harper Impulse!
I have always been a big fan of romantic comedy books and movies and I adore a good heart tugging love story, so when it came to creating my own world of fiction, romance was my most natural choice. I believe in love at first sight and in happily ever after; I adore romance and surprises and I also understand the pain that sometimes comes with love, so to me it is a fascinating and fun genre which I enjoy both writing and reading.
With three children I have grown used to a bit of background noise as I write, though I am much more productive with silence where I can become totally absorbed in the story. However, I do sometimes listen to music separately and my next novel, a romance called Fonder, is deeply inspired by some original songs written by Jim McKee, an Irish singer/songwriter who also happens to be my very lovely other half. So for research (and enjoyment of course!) I do listen to his work a lot.
Read lots, write lots, practice, practice, practice, read more, take classes, share your work, enter competitions and buy your own copy of Stephen King’s ‘On Writing’ – it’s my favourite guide and is packed full of subtle tips and techniques on how to learn the craft.
My next novel is a deep romance called Fonder – based on the concept of ‘absence makes the heart grow fonder’ – here is the blurb and the book will be released in Autumn.
Are you afraid to love again?
TOM is an artist and singer/songwriter who lives with his young son in the West of Ireland, far away from the troubled North he grew up in. He has loved and lost too many times and is convinced that a single life is safer than ever falling in love again.
Geraldine (GERI) is a single mum who lives near Tom’s birthplace in Northern Ireland. She is a talented but struggling writer with a large family network and her heart bears so many scars, she has lost count.
When Tom goes north to play a one off gig in his home town on the night of Geri’s birthday, their worlds fatefully collide and despite their initial resistance, they make plans to see each other again.
In a summer of romance, song and laughter, a deep love affair unfolds between the two single parents who share a passion for music, writing and family, making Tom question his settled existence in the West and longing for home.
But can he go back to live in a place he remembers as war torn and full of bitterness and struggle? Can he overcome this to admit that home, and Geri, is what he needs and wants? Or will geographical distance and the wounds of yesteryear prove too much to overcome?
It will make you laugh, it will make you cry, it will have you tapping your toes with the best of Irish music and most of all, it will leave you believing in love all over again as you realise that home and family really is where the heart is.
You’re having a dinner party, which 4 people – living or dead – would be your ideal guests?
Marian Keyes for the craic, Patrick Swayze for some dirty dancing demonstrations (!), Keith Urban for some music and my mum Geraldine who was taken from this life way too soon. She was great fun and I’d love to enjoy her company over dinner and a few glasses of wine.
You’ve been given carte blanche to go on any chat show you wish to plug your latest book – which one do you choose, and why?
Graham Norton because he is Irish, is great fun and always has top guests who I’d love to hang out with!
I’m a huge fan of the ABC series Nashville which airs every Thursday on More4. My favourite character is Deacon, the troubled guitarist who I just adore.
I’m very giddy and love nothing more than a good giggle. I always have a great laugh with my partner Jim who shares the same sense of humour, as well as my children – in particular my son Adam who is very witty and always sees the funny side of everything. I am lucky to have a huge extended family who are very close so a cousins night out always ends up having me in stitches!