Today our guest is Paula Martin author of yesterday’s book Irish Inheritance, here is a link to the book if you missed the post. http://wp.me/p2Eu3u-591
Let’s find out more about Paula.
1) Where is your home town?
I’m originally from a town called Preston, in Lancashire in North West England, but at eighteen I moved about 35 miles away to study at Manchester University, and I’ve lived in the Manchester area ever since.
2) How long have you been writing?
Since I was about eight or nine. I was a voracious reader as a child, and made up stories about the children in my favourite books. That led on to writing about my own characters, and later, when I was in me teens, to very cheesy romances! My first novel was published when I was in my twenties, followed by three more. Then, with a young family to bring up and my career as a teacher, I had a break from writing novels, although I still wrote short stories and articles. I came back to romance novels a few years after I had taken early retirement from teaching, and have had six books published since 2011.
3) What genres do you like writing most?
Contemporary romance is my ‘natural’ genre, and I haven’t yet stepped out of my comfort zone. As I used to be a history teacher, people sometimes ask me why I don’t write historical novels, but maybe it’s because I know how much research would be involved to make sure I didn’t get something wrong!
4) Is this your first book set in Ireland?
Yes, although it’s about eight years since I first visited the west coast of Ireland, and fell in love with the beautiful Connemara area of County Galway. I’ve been back to Ireland ten times since then and visited other parts of the island.
5) What is it that makes Ireland a romantic setting for many books?
Its scenery, its history, and its people. I love the mountain areas I’ve visited, like the Wicklow Mountains and Connemara, which have a wild beauty, and the west coast of Ireland is stunning with its cliffs and rocky shores, and some lovely bays. Wherever you go in Ireland, you’re surrounded by history, ranging from prehistoric tombs to medieval monasteries and castles, and then to the more recent history of the Irish potato famine, and the struggle for independence. Last, but not least, I love the friendliness of the Irish people, who greet you with a cheerful, ‘How are ye?’ everywhere you go.
6) Can you give the readers a hint about some of the family research that Jenna and Guy must undertake?
I’ve done a lot of my own family history research, so I knew their initial research would be from census records, and birth, marriage, and death lists. Many of these can now be found online so it’s much easier to find out your family history than it used to be. I did discover, however, that the 19th century Irish census records had been destroyed, so Jenna and Guy only had access to the 1901 and 1911 censuses. These records only contain basic information, and the next step is to buy copies of birth, marriage, and death certificates which can provide more detail. Older people’s memories are also invaluable, as Guy and Jenna discovered when they met people who remembered the family they were researching.
7) Tell us a little about the house in the book called Mist Na Mara.
I know exactly where I wanted Mist Na Mara to be situated, with a view of the bay on one side and the Connemara mountains on the other. There’s actually a ruined castle near where I imagine the house, but I wanted it to be Victorian. So the house is partly a figment of my imagination, and partly an amalgam of various old houses I’ve either visited or seen in photos, movies, or TV dramas. I wish it was real!
8) Tell us a little about some of your other books
‘His Leading Lady’ is set in London’s theatre world when Jess agrees to impersonate her twin sister and take the lead in a new musical show in the West End. She falls for the show’s director, Kyle Drummond, but discovers he had been dating her sister, and starts to wonder if he is using her as a substitute in real life as well as in the show.
‘Fragrance of Violets’, set in England’s beautiful Lake District, is a story of forgiveness between Abbey and Jack who fell out as teenagers but meet again ten years later. However, Jack is hiding a secret that threatens to destroy the fragile resumption of their relationship.
‘Changing the Future’, again set in the North West of England, is another ‘reunion’ story. Lisa meets Paul again after their acrimonious breakup six years earlier. Resentment still lingers on both sides, but so does their mutual attraction. They can’t change the past, but a life-threatening volcanic eruption may help them to change the future.
‘Dream of Paris’ tells the story of school teacher Anna who has a dream of going to live and study in Paris, until Matt Carlton comes into her life. When Anna discovers the reason for Matt’s strangely inconsistent behaviour, she is sure there is no future for them, but maybe Paris can still work its magic for them both.
‘Her Only Option’ was inspired by my visit to Egypt several years ago. Neve, a tour guide on a Nile cruise ship, meets archaeologist Ross McAllister. As a result, she breaks up with her Egyptian boyfriend, but when Ross’s work in the famous Valley of the Kings seems to be under threat, she has to make a heart-breaking decision.
9) Are you working on a new book at the moment?
My current ‘work in progress’ is a spin-off story about Charley, who was Jenna’s best friend in ‘Irish Inheritance’. It takes place about three years later, when Charley, after a personal tragedy, unwillingly returns to Ireland. She meets Luke Sullivan, an Irish veterinary surgeon, and is drawn into a web of intrigue linked to Luke’s ex-wife.
10) Where can fans find out more about you and your work?
You can also find all my books on my Amazon author page: http://amzn.to/1o9biew