Hello there, Welcome to my Authors Let’s Chat – An Interview with… Feature. If you want to know more about the author I am featuring today, please carry on scrolling. And for more author interviews, please visit here.
We are so very lucky to have authors in this world. Books are an essential need. We find or lose ourselves within the pages. But while we are reading their books. We would also love to know the person, the genuine person behind their writing.
So without further ado, Let me introduce you to Rose McClelland and let’s get to know her together. I am honoured to have you here on Reading Through The Pain. And Thank you very much for being interviewed.
1. Please tell my readers a little about yourself?
Hello! My name is Rose and I live in Belfast. I am the author of 4 novels. I have 2 rescue cats. I love listening to audio books and, of course, writing. I also love the theatre and cinema.
2. What inspired you to become a writer/author?
I have wanted to be an author from an early age. I remember telling my mum I wanted to be a writer when I was only ten years old! I used to gobble up books as a kid and have always loved reading. I studied English and Drama at University and went on to do various creative writing courses over the years.
3. What is the best thing about being a writer/author?
Seeing your front cover design and then holding the paperback in your hands. It’s a very real tangible feeling to see all your words in print.
4. What is your writing routine like?
I get up early, have coffee, tidy my home a little and freshen up. Then I sit down to write as quickly as possible so that I don’t have time for the fear to kick in. The sooner I make myself sit down and get on with it, the better. I set a timer and put my mobile phone away so that I have no distractions and I can just focus for the allocated time. Then when my writing session is over, I can relax guilt-free for the rest of the day!
5. How much time is spent on research?
It’s very hard to quantify time spent on research. I think that as a writer, your mind is always ticking over, always observing things, always analysing. Whether that’s through other books or films or TV programmes, all the information is going in and contributing to your writing.
6. How much of the book is planned out before you write it/them?
Quite a lot! I’m definitely one of those writers who likes to plan beforehand. Some authors write by their seat of their pants, but I can’t do that. It helps me to structure beforehand, know what my end goal is and know what plot points I wish to follow.
7. What do you think is most important when writing a book? The characters, plot, setting, etc?
For me, I love a good narrative voice. If the voice is intimate, honest and compelling, I am totally sucked in. Of course the book needs to have a great hook too, so that you are drawn in and need to know what happens. And there needs to be plenty of twists and turns along the way to keep you turning the pages. It’s also important to be able to root for the main character and want them to do well. I didn’t answer that very well, did I? They are all so important to mix together a great story!
8. What is your latest book about?
My latest book “Under your Skin” is about a wife who has gone missing. We know that she is trapped in a basement, but we don’t know who has put her there or why.
9. What inspired it?
I have been working from home for several years and initially I found the transition quite difficult. I missed the social interaction with my colleagues. I began to wonder what it would be like to be trapped indoors all the time and then the character Hannah came along.
10. Why did you pick the genre or genres that you write in?
My first three novels were women’s fiction/ romance. However, I noticed that I was beginning to read more and more psychological thrillers and really enjoying them. I decided to try a change of genre, and I’m glad I did. It turns out I enjoy writing on the dark side!
11. How did you go about getting a publishing deal? Or how did you become self-published?
Initially, I submitted to lots of agents. I had many rejections, but finally an agent signed me up. Then we had the journey of trying to get a publisher. Again, there were lots of rejections, but finally Crooked Cat signed me up. I kept my ear to the ground and was always on the lookout if publishers requested submissions.
12. Would you be enthralled in making your books into a movie or TV series?
Yes, yes, and yes! It would be wonderful to see my words on a screen. I did have some short plays put on and it was fabulous to see actors performing my words on stage.
13. Any new books or plans for the future?
Yes indeed, I am currently working on book number 5, which will be another psychological thriller. My aim to have some of the characters from book 4 to continue a series.
14. What authors have been an influence on your writing?
Many, many authors. The first I would say is Marian Keyes. I remember reading her novel “Rachel’s Holiday” many years ago and wanting to write a novel with such open honestly and warmth. Since then, I have enjoyed many other authors such as Fiona Barton, Claire Allan, Sue Fortin, Katy Johnston, Clare Mackintosh and Emma Donoghue. When I read their novels, I like to look at the plot points and characterization and study what works so well.
15. What writing advice would you have given yourself when you started?
Set small goals for each day. Tick off the small goals achieved each day and know that you are doing your best!
16. What writing advice would you give to an aspiring writer or a new author to the block?
Easy does it. Just take one step at a time. If you are spending some time today on your book, then you can know that you are making progress towards your goals.
17. What has been your favourite book so far this year?
My favourite book has been “The Suspects” by Katy Johnston. I found it really gripping and devoured it in no time.
18. What is your all-time favourite book and why?
I’m going to say “The Widow” by Fiona Barton. I loved the narrative voice, and I found the plot fascinating.
19. What genre do you read?
I read a lot of psychological thrillers, but I also enjoy non-fiction books such as biographies.
20. What are you currently reading?
I am currently re-reading “The Widow” actually!
21. What is on your To be read list?
On my TBR list is: “The Curator” by John Banks, “She” by H.C. Warner, “Little Friends” by Jane Shemilt, “Our Little Cruelties” by Liz Nugent and “The Holdout” by Graham Moore.
22. Anything else you would like to add?
Thank you so much for having me!
Thank you to Rose for this remarkable interview and for your superb books.