Sunday, 23 February 2020

Sunday Brunch with Jaffareadstoo ~ Paula Martin

On this quiet Sunday morning why don't you put the kettle on, make your favourite breakfast, and settle down for Sunday Brunch with Jaffareadstoo

I'm delighted to welcome writer, Paula Martin

☼Good morning, Paula! Happy Sunday!

What favourite food are you bringing to Sunday brunch? 

As six of my novels are set in Ireland, how about some Irish ‘boxty’? It’s like a pancake but with grated potato added to the mixture –very tasty! 

Would you like a pot of English Breakfast tea, a strong Americano, or a glass of Bucks Fizz? 

I’d rather have a Latte, please! 

Which of your literary heroes are joining us today? 

How about Mr. Darcy and Jean Valjean? As long as they look like Colin Firth and Hugh Jackman, of course! 

What’s the title of the book nearest to you? 

‘The Emotional Thesaurus’ – a very useful resource for romance writers. 

What’s the oldest book on your book shelf? 

‘A History of Preston’ by Anthony Hewitson – a first edition, published in 1883. I was born and brought up in Preston in Lancashire, and this book was my ‘bible’ when I was studying local history. It was only a few years ago, when I was researching my family history, that I discovered Anthony Hewitson was actually married to my father’s aunt! 

Which book do you really want to read but haven’t had time for …yet! 

Any of the 100+ books on my Kindle which I still haven’t managed to read! I will admit, though, after seeing Les Miserables ten times on stage plus the film and anniversary concerts, I do keep promising myself I will read Victor Hugo’s book. 

Do you have a guilty reading pleasure, and if so will you tell us about it? 

I never feel guilty about reading anything! I honestly think an author can learn something from every book they read, even if it’s how not to do something. 

If the house was on fire which book would you rescue? 

The four (hardback) novels which I wrote in the late 1960s/early 1970s, as they are now out of print and irreplaceable. 

Do you have a reading/writing playlist on Spotify, or a favourite CD to listen to when reading/writing? And if so will you share with us a favourite song or piece of music that makes you feel happy? 

I don’t usually listen to any music when I’m reading or writing as I find it too distracting. However, if I’m writing about a seisun (informal music session) in an Irish pub, I may listen to some Irish songs, to get me in the mood! 

Do you have a favourite place to settle down to read/write? 

My main writing place is my PC in the corner of my study but I always have a notebook with me in case some inspiration strikes when I’m not at home. As for reading, the answer is – anywhere! I always have my Kindle with me. 

Give us four essential items that a writer absolutely needs? 

1) A notebook and pen. I don’t write my novels longhand, but always have a notebook on my desk to jot down reminders about my characters and things to check. 

2) PC/internet – it’s so much easier to research the factual information you need for your novels than it used to be in pre-internet days. 

3) Thesaurus – for the times when the exact word you need is eluding you. 

4) Not sure this is actually an ‘item’ but my 4th essential is a critique partner and/or beta reader – someone who will be honest and point out your errors, omissions or what doesn’t work for them. 

What can you tell us about your latest novel, or your current work in progress? 

My last six novels are all set in Connemara in the west of Ireland. They are stand-alone novels with new heroes and heroines in each, but are linked by their location at ‘Mist Na Mara’, a Victorian house which was converted into an Arts Centre. 

My current work in progress is a completely new departure for me, as I usually write contemporary novels. However, I’m now working on a story set in Victorian times which is actually based (very loosely) on my great-great-grandfather who was a captain with the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company for about twenty years. 

Paula Martin lives near Manchester in North West England and has two daughters and two grandsons.

She had some early publishing success with four romance novels and several short stories, but then had a break from writing while she brought up a young family and also pursued her career as a history teacher for twenty-five years.

She returned to writing fiction after retiring from teaching, and is thrilled to have found publishing success again with her contemporary romances.

Apart from writing, she enjoys visiting new places and has travelled extensively in Britain and Ireland, mainland Europe, the Middle East, USA and Canada. Her other interests include musical theatre and tracing her family history.

Twitter @PaulaRomances

Follow on Twitter  @Jaffareadstoo #SundayBrunchwithJaffareadstoo


  1. Great interview with some interesting facts about yourself! I was intrigued by the fact that you discovered a family attachment to Anthony Hewitson. I've actually tried a boxty in the restaurant on Temple Bar - Quite something!

    1. I had boxty in Temple Bar too - wonder if it was the same restaurant? Thanks for visiting!


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