You may have heard of the new book Pieces of You by Ella Harper – out now in ebook with paperback coming on September 25th. Ella is a lovely author who I met in her previous life as Sasha Wagstaff when we did an event together and she was just one of those people who makes me wish authors all worked in an office together because she was so lovely and I would totally have great chats with her beside the kettle. I suppose Twitter is our kettle.
Anyway: a while ago I asked Ella a few questions including the all-important: what would you do if you could turn back time?
1) There’s plenty of advice for unpublished writers but not so much for published ones. What’s the one piece of advice you would give to a newly published author?
The one piece of advice I’d give to a newly published author would be to connect with other published authors, if you can. It’s quite a bewildering process first time round and it’s reassuring to speak to people in the same boat. It’s also prudent to learn about the highs and lows of being an author and to become as knowledgeable as possible about the process!
2) What is your most favourite and least favourite aspect of writing? (My least favourite is research!)
My favourite aspect of writing (so many to choose from!) but I guess it’s just that amazing freedom of having a blank page and being able to create a world for people to lose themselves in. My least favourite is probably just those days when I’m not ‘feeling it’. I wouldn’t call it writer’s block, as such, but there are definitely days when it doesn’t flow the way it should and I find it best to just step away from the lap top and do something else to free my mind up a bit. But hey, that’s a small thing compared to all the highs!
3) A lot of your Sasha Wagstaff books feature wonderful locations (the South of France, Los Angeles). What’s the most romantic or glamorous place you’ve ever visited and do you ever find yourself planning holidays around somewhere you want to write about?
The most romantic place I’ve ever visited is probably Mauritius…absolutely gorgeous. These days, with my change of writing direction, I don’t find myself planning holidays around somewhere I want to write about, but I’m always open to be inspired by a glamorous or stunning location!
4) What’s been the most exciting moment of your writing career to date?
Probably…my latest book deal. It’s unbelieveably exciting to have a new novel out in a different genre, using a whole new persona! Ella Harper is me, but a different side to my personality so my new novel is still relationship-based with a love story at its core, but it’s hopefully also poignant and emotional. I absolutely loved writing it and I’m incredibly proud of it.
5) And lastly, what would you do if you could turn back time?
If I could turn back time, I would probably have started writing sooner. When I discovered writing, I had that ‘coming home’ feeling and it would have been lovely to have found that sooner. But I’m convinced that timing is everything, so it most likely all turned out the way it should have done!