Spotlight on Author Paula R.C. Readman
Fellow author, Paula R.C. Readman and I first met at a Bridge House Publishing Author event a few years ago and since then, we’ve both had stories published on the CafeLit site and in many of the anthologies released by publisher, Gill James, of Bridge House Publishing. Paula has joined me again to help celebrate the release of my latest book, ‘The Macaroon Chronicles‘ which is now available on Amazon and to tell us about her latest book, ‘Stone Angels’, published by Darkstroke Books which has hit the top of several bestseller lists since its launch.
I put some questions to Paula…
Dawn – What is your latest book release, Paula? Please tell us a little about it.
Paula – In August this year after taking six years to write, edit, and submit I finally found a publisher who would publish my first crime novel, Stone Angels. It was a huge learning curve for me. I’m now busy editing the first novel I ever wrote. When I first completed Seeking the Dark, I submitted it to an American publisher who gave me some guidance on how to improve it, but I wasn’t familiar with editing terms. I had mapped out the whole story I wanted to tell, but I hadn’t the skills I needed to tell it as I wanted to.
After spending eight months, working with an editor on Stone Angels and writing drabbles for Black Hare Press, my writing and editing skills were much improved. Seeking the Dark is a vampire novel with a twist and a publisher has shown an interest in it once I finished the edits. I also have plans for a follow on novel to the Funeral Birds, so I’ve plenty to get on with for future books.
Dawn – How did you first become interested in writing?
Paula – I’m dyslectic and was diagnosed when I was in my junior school. This wasn’t followed up in my senior school, and for that reason I found school to be frustrating. I could do the schoolwork, but couldn’t get it down on paper. I’ve always loved books. My father was a great reader and used to share his sci-fi novels with me. At sixteen, I used to carry a small dictionary with me so anytime I was reading while travelling to work on the bus I could look up words I didn’t understand. I loved reading, and would memorise patterns of words I couldn’t pronounce. I still have a problem with spelling but I use an electronic dictionary on my computer as it pronounces the words for me. It wasn’t until I was in my thirties that I decided to see if I could become a writer. When computers become more affordable I decided to teach myself from books, how to write to be published.
Dawn – Do you prefer to write in any particular genre and if so, which?
Paula – My writing style is dark, but not quite horror. I love the Victorian gothic ghost and horror short stories. They are scary and dark without being gory. So you could say I model my writing style on Gothic horror, if it needs to be categorized.
Dawn – If you write in several different genres are there any that you avoid and if so, why?
Paula – I don’t do romance. I write psychological crime, Gothic horror or dark fantasy, but romance. Not for me, just not a romantic person.
Dawn – Of all the stories you’ve written, which is your favourite and why?
Paula – That’s a little unfair, Dawn. That’s a bit of a Daddy or Chips question! At a push I have two to short stories I love, but as all of the stories in my single collection, Days Pass Like A Shadow are all my favourite ones, I’ll select Chimes at Midnight and Rat Trap as two of my best favourites. Yes, Dawn, I know the question was one, but how do you choose? Rat Trap was my first crime story and the start of my writing career that brought me to meet Gill, Debz and the rest of the Bridge House family. Chimes at Midnight wrote itself and was the easiest story I’ve ever written.
Dawn – Well, Paula, I think your answer is quite reasonable and you’ll see my answer to this question on your blog – I didn’t choose only one story either!
Dawn – Is there a specific word count to which you usually work either intentionally or unintentionally?
Paula – Not at all, I write until I have to stop writing to sort out my husband’s dinner. Some days it might be a few hundred, some days it’s a thousand, it really depends on what I’m writing. Now I’m editing so I might be rewriting a sentence or a paragraph.
Dawn – My mind has been on ‘The Macaroon Chronicles’ for some time now, so please, Paula, forgive the following food questions!
Dawn – Does food feature greatly in your current release or work in progress?
Paula – If feeding on blood is classed as food then yes, if not, then not at all.
Dawn – Do you like macaroons? If so do you prefer coconut or almond?
Paula – I haven’t had them for years, so I will go for almonds.
Dawn – In ‘The Macaroon Chronicles’, on the Isle of Macaroon, there are Meringue Mountains with chocolate waterfalls, cheese mines and a custard river. Imagine you were to visit the Isle of Macaroon, which one of those sites would you visit first? And why?
Paula – If the Cheese Mines are suitable for vegetarians then that would be the place for me. Do I have to bring my own cheese biscuits? I love cheese it’s the reason I can’t become a vegan.
Dawn – I’m reliably informed biscuits are available at all cheese mines on the Isle of Macaroon, which are also suitable for vegetarians, Paula, and if you make it to the island, there’ll be a special welcome waiting for you!
Thanks to Paula for being my guest today and if you want to buy her book or indeed, find out more about her, here are some details:
Paula R.C. Readman Author of Stone Angels,
The Funeral Birds
Days Pass Like a Shadow https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B0897SV5RH
Twitter: Paula R C Readman@Darkfantasy13