Marilyn Holdsworth

Broken Pieces - Rachel Thompson

Saturday, August 3, 2013

Author Interview – Tanya Karen Gough

Will you write others in this same genre? Yes, I’m sure I will. There are four books in the Emma & the Elementals series, so that’s a given. After that, I have an adult fiction book planned. That will be historical fiction, based on actual events from my great-grandfather’s life in Boston in the early 1900s. I’m not sure what happens after that, but I’m certain that I’ll always come back to fantasy, either for children or adults, because it’s very close to my heart.

Have you started another book yet? I have! I’m currently working on WATER WORKS, which is Book Two in the Emma & the Elementals series.  Where ROOT BOUND is about finding one’s place and one’s home, WATER WORKS is about ways of thinking about the world. Things that were true in Book One may not be true in Book Two, or they may have changed because things do change over time.  Emma is now best friends with Reggie (the boy in the apartment down the hall in Book One), and she’ll have to save him again. And the stakes are higher now, because now she’s saving someone she actually cares about.  Some of the characters from Book One return, but probably not the ones you’d expect. And because this book is about changing realities, she won’t be travelling in the classic Greek and Roman mythological world this time.  She’s going someplace less familiar. I’d like the reader to discover new worlds, too.

Are you reading any interesting books at the moment? I’ve always got a few books on the go. At the moment, I’m taking my time with Steven Pinker’s The Stuff of Thought, which uses linguistics as a springboard to investigate how the human brain is structured for thought and for language. I’m also looking at Hallucinations by Olivier Sacks. I’ve got Philip Pullman’s new Brothers Grimm collection sitting by the sofa, for when I need a fairy tale pick-me-up, and I just started Some Kind of Fairy Tale by the delightful Graham Joyce. My beside book at the moment is George R.R. Martin’s Game of Thrones. I’ve told myself I can’t watch Season 2 of the HBO show until I’ve finished reading the first book. I’m not sure if I can keep that promise.

How do you work through self-doubts and fear? I don’t experience a lot of self-doubt or fear when I write. I don’t find either one to be conducive to strong writing. I may experience challenges in trying to find the right approach to a particular literary issue, such as how best to express a character’s point of view, but I try to stay focused on the overall structure and themes. Even when I’m writing about something very personal, the trick is finding the story in my experience; if your raw emotion isn’t serving the story, or if it’s blinding you from getting through it, you need to take a step back.

What scares you the most? Losing my words.  There’s a 2001 film called Iris with Judy Dench, Kate Winslet and Jim Broadbent, which chronicles Iris Murdoch’s descent into Alzheimer’s. I can’t watch it all the way through in one sitting.  It’s a gorgeous film with spectacular performances all around, but as soon as she starts losing her language, I just start to bawl. It’s a totally visceral response, and it’s strange because I almost never cry at movies.

Root Bound

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Genre - Middle Grade Fantasy Adventure

Rating – G (ages 10+)

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