Snickers, Fairy Cakes and Pink Willies-Whoops, Wellies

I met a lovely author recently named Sue Watson. Sue has written a very funny book titled ‘Fat Girls and Fairy Cakes’ Check it out here. Sue invited me over to her blog for cake and coffee and this is what happened…

‘Pink Wellies, Flat Caps and Someone Else’s Snickers Bar’

 I recently read a very funny book – Pink Wellies and Flat Caps and just knew that the author would be my kinda gal. So having enjoyed a lovely session of book chat, coffee, cake (and a ‘mix-up’ over Maltesers) at her place, I invited the fabulous Lynda Renham over to mine. My mission was to discover her writing secrets, over copious coffee and cake.
DSCF6331 - Copy (2)-2
Lynda’s latest book is the best-selling ‘Pink Wellies and Flat Caps,’ and tells the hilarious tale of Alice Lane, who has everything; a wonderful fiancé, a responsible job and a lovely flat in Chelsea, but after a bra fitting her life goes tits up. Homeless, and with just a sparkling engagement ring as a memory of her previous life Alice accepts a live-in farm manager’s job and discovers that things actually can get worse. I was intrigued to know how Lynda saw Alice, so my first probing question was;

Lynda, I love Alice who is feisty, funny and bright. The character is so well written I felt like I was alongside her during her adventures in the country. So if Hollywood called tomorrow and optioned the book for a film, who would you like to play the part of Alice?
If Hollywood called tomorrow, the lost likely scenario is that I would drop dread from a heart attack and would never get to shout ‘Emily Blunt.’ In my mind I have no doubt that it should be her. I adored her performance in ‘The Devil Wears Prada’ and she is so versatile. She would be perfect and of course we would become best friends J Most importantly she is British and would understand the British humour.

Yes, I can definitely see Emily Blunt in the role, she would encapsulate the vulnerability, intelligence and fun of Alice.  It seems you have always been a writer, and were writing stories as a child. So when was the moment you decided to write your first novel?

When I was nineteen and I still have the original draft copy in a chest in our summer house. I have written many since then and have numerous unpublished novels knocking about the house. The moment I decided to go for it with comedy was after my humorous blog took off. I had just returned from Turin where I had gone to attend a wedding and where along with my mother in law we transported a wedding cake. From this whole experience a small germ of an idea was transplanted and later became ‘Wedding Cake to Turin’ My first comedy romance.
What a lovely story and around Italy too – such a romantic setting. So, your next book can you tell us what it’s about, what’s inspired you to write this, and when we can get our hands on a copy?
Ooh, always reluctant to talk about WIP. But I can say that there is a monkey involved, a few East End Gangsters, lots of misunderstandings and a touch of Downton Abbey and of course a gorgeous hero.
Sounds great! I know what you mean it’s always difficult to talk about a new book because you don’t want to give anything away – yet at the same time you can’t wait to share it with everyone. But with all that potential hilarity and a delicious hero, it sounds like a winner already.
The hero is definitely the most gorgeous yet I think…the book’s out in September and of course it also contains a huge amount of comedy.
I can’t wait! So while you’re slaving over a computer and spending afternoons busy with gorgeous heroes at your writing desk, what do you nibble on?
Whatever I can get my hands on… I even stole the builder’s Snickers bar from the fridge when they were building our extension.  I would also buy them doughnuts and then steal one or two for myself. Shameful but necessary for the creative juices to flow…
Absolutely! And as I always say, if it’s someone else’s chocolate it’s someone else’s calories.
Gma + Gdad's 70th 356Stolen Snickers Bar

So apart from other people’s food calling from your fridge what keeps you awake at night? 

Guilt at the number of doughnuts I’ve eaten that day and whether a spider may run over my face, as happened once, and oh yes the plot of my novel, of course…
Ah yes, doughnuts… but let’s not be side-tracked by soft dough yielding to wickedly sharp yet sugary sweet raspberry jam – as can so easily happen. No we’ll stay with writing…we will… for now. Back to books; a plot can cause many sleepless nights until it’s firmly nailed down and what with a fear of spiders and Snickers calling from the fridge I can see you may have your work cut out. So who is your favourite writer? Have any writers inspired your own pen?
I have many. Iris Murdoch I particularly admire as was lucky to meet her husband John Bayley and see her study. A new favourite writer is Kimberley Chambers, a good friend. I am a huge fan of Salman Rushdie, Jo Carnegie, and Ronni Cooper. My writing has been more inspired by films than by books and Richard Curtis I admire greatly.

Yes I am also inspired by films and as a writer of romantic comedy I can see how Richard Curtis films (Bridget Jones, Love Actually, Notting Hill etc) would be the perfect inspiration for you. Me too!

Do you have a favourite book or books?

Several. ‘The Heart Listens’ by Helen Van Slyke. I never forgot the main protagonist Elizabeth Quigley. ‘End of the Affair’ Graham Green. ‘Calico Palace’ by Gwen Bristow and ‘Blood Secrets’ by Craig Jones. I also loved ‘The Feud’ by Kimberley Chambers and ‘The Sea The Sea’ by Iris Murdoch.
Talking of favourite books, one of mine is Stephen King’s psychological thriller, ‘Misery.’ Paul Sheldon the novelist in the book has various rituals while writing and on completion of each novel indulges in a cigarette to celebrate. Do you have a special treat you enjoy when you finish that final sentence?
Not really because it is quite a worry knowing if it will be received well…But if it does go well, however, we would celebrate with some bubbly.
That sounds perfect! So until the new book is completed and you open that bubbly, more coffee? It’s been so delicious sharing cake and some of your writing secrets Lynda so while I put the kettle on, here’s a final, silly but extremely vital question; if you were a cake, what would you be?
A fruitcake, in fact sometimes my husband thinks I am one!
Ha ha… that reminds me, do help yourself to another fairy cake… and thanks so much for joining me.
To read more about Lynda go to her blog here.

Follow her onTwitter

And if you want to know more about Pink Wellies and Flat Caps (how could you not?)  Then pop over to Amazon

Missing Cats and Book Awards

Hello my friends.

I’m like a cat chasing her tail these days and I’m getting very dizzy. Where does the time go? This year has started off with such a bang that I am walking around shell shocked. I finished ‘Pink Wellies and Flat Caps’thinking this is going to be such a crap novel. I had builders crashing around me the whole time. My house was a mess. I was living without a bathroom and a kitchen for nearly six months while trying to write a novel in my small summer house.DSCF7249
What a saviour that little room became. But I felt it was going all wrong. I spent so much time stressed and in floods of tears. I had plumber leaks and a garden that resembled a building site and a stressed out cat to top it all. But, ‘Pink Wellies’PAW1001_Kindlecover_nobleed_198x128 got finished and was finally released to fab reviews and within four weeks of its Kindle release it went into the top ten of the humour charts on Amazon. To say I was stunned is an understatement. I just kept watching the sales every day in a state of shock and just before the paperback was released the Kindle version hit number one. I was overwhelmed. I have been even more overwhelmed by the support of my lovely readers. Thank you so much. In the past few weeks ‘Coconuts and Wonderbras’ has entered the charts again at number 6 and ‘Croissants and Jam’ at number 8 in the humour charts.
I am getting such wonderful feedback from you all and I cannot tell you how much that helps. Sitting alone in a little room with made up characters can get a bit lonely, especially as they don’t talk back. So hearing from my readers on facebook and Twitter so makes my day.
Back to where the time goes. I keep wishing I could go back to all those yesterdays that are just sitting there. If you have read Stephen King’s ‘The Langoliers’ then you will know what I mean. I don’t even own a Television and still there is not enough time.
Again thank you for all your support and I hope by late summer to be giving you more laughs. In the meantime I am going to attempt to write a new humourous blog posting every week as many have said they have missed them.
Now it is time to hug my little cat Bendy who managed to get himself in the cupboard and slide down the back and it has taken us almost an hour to trace his cries and rescue him 🙂 Oh and I have been nominated for The People’s Book Awards.logo3
I’d be thrilled if you voted for me here
Thank you.