I am delighted to welcome the author Linda Swift to Jaffareadstoo
Hi and welome, Linda. Tell us a little about yourself and what got you started as an author?
My father and his mother Edna were both teachers and avid readers so I can't remember a time when books were not part of my life. Grandmother Edna also wrote poetry and short stories and a few were published. I believe I inherited "writing genes" and encouragement to develop them. I began writing poems at ten and wrote my first romance novel at sixteen. I still have that handwritten (with pencil on notebook paper) story today.
How do you plan your writing, are you a plotter, or a see where it goes kind of writer?
I am a writer who takes a general story idea, then adds a setting and creates characters for it. I give serious attention to naming them as I think this is very important. I make a few sketchy notes as I get to know these people and when they start talking to each other, they tell me the story. My job is to record it. If I listen to them, they do the rest and I'm often surprised at the outcome .
What do you consider to be your strongest points as a writer?
My strongest point as a writer is my "lunatic persistence." I consider failure as a challenge and work even harder to reach my goal. As you would expect from my earlier answer, I write character driven stories. I strive to relate to readers on a level that touches their hearts whether it be a novel, short story, or poem.
Why do you write? What keeps you motivated during creative slumps?
I write because I am incomplete without expressing myself with words. I have a need to communicate my thoughts in a tangible way. I am never without something to write. I have partial books in hard copy that I will probably never have the time to finish. I also have stories and characters in my head that are waiting to be written. And what gets written, is usually the thing that gnaws at my mind the most persistently.
What has been one of your most rewarding experiences as an author?
Without doubt the adaptation in 2015 of my Civil War novel, This Time Forever, into an independent film titled Clarissa's War has been my most rewarding experience as an author. The film is under contract with Dreamscape Media and the DVD will be available on Amazon very soon.
Out of all the books you've written, do you have a favourite?
My favorite of all my books is This Time Forever, but not because of the film. I am a Southerner and the Civil War has always held a special place in my heart. After reading and watching Gone With the Wind and later, the television drama North and South, I was inspired to write my own version of the war, and so I did. It has been gratifying to have it compared with those stories by some reviewers.
If someone is brand new to your work, which book do you think they should start with?
It would be difficult to suggest which of my books someone should read first. I write several genres...historical and contemporary novels, speculative fiction, poetry, and now I've added a non-fiction book about living in Kingston-upon-Hull in 1999-2000. The choice would depend on a reader's taste. I think a history buff in England might enjoy Maid of the Midlands, which includes Mary Queen of Scots and its sequel, Mistress of Huntleigh Hall written in the time of Guy Fawkes and the Gunpowder Plot. I have three poetry books available and A Potpourri of Poems has been praised very highly. And for the reader who enjoys Alfred Hitchcock suspense, I have five stories available as ebooks and the collection titled Take Five in print or ebook.
How can readers find out more about you?
I'm on my FB page every day and would love to meet new readers there. You can find out about all of my books at Books by Linda Swift Amazon page. I also have a website which I an updating this month.
Visit Linda on her website
Thank you so much for inviting me to be your guest today, Jo. I appreciate the opportunity to introduce myself and my books to your readers and I look forward to hearing from them.
Linda, it's been a real pleasure to have your company today.
Come back and see us again soon.