Somewhere to review books I'm reading without giving away any spoilers!
Now for something different….
The author of ‘The Forgotten Children’ is Isabella Muir and she kindly agreed to answer my questions about her writing. Read on to find out what she said, to discover more about ‘The Forgotten Children’, the author’s biography and the opportunity for anyone in the UK to enter the giveaway to try to win a signed copy of the book!
Welcome, Isabella Muir, to my blog and thank you so much for answering my questions!
Where did you get the inspiration for the book?
When I was studying for my MA in Professional Writing I came across a book entitled, Empty Cradles. It is a book I would recommend everyone to read. It is the factual account by Nottinghamshire social worker, Margaret Humphreys, who uncovered the travesty that was the British policy of transporting children to British colonies. The book contains heartbreaking stories of families torn apart, many who were lied to and many more who suffered terrible abuse. Having read Empty Cradles I wanted to write a novel to help raise awareness of the plight of all those families who were affected.
What is your writing process?
I’m not a planner, but with each book I write I try to plan a little more. The first three novels I wrote before The Forgotten Children form a series (the Sussex Crime Mysteries). So it was vital that I was familiar with the characters and the ongoing timelines. I learned to keep a tight rein on character traits and timelines by using Scrivener, which is a wonderful resource for writers.
But when I worked on The Forgotten Children the story was already clear in my mind, as were the characters, so it was just the timelines that I needed to keep a check on.
Do you write using pen and paper or on a computer?
I write my first draft using pen (or pencil) and a notebook. I find it much easier to tap into my creative mind when I’m not sat at my computer! But then I type the text into Scrivener, doing a bit of a first edit as I go.
Who is your favourite character out of your stories and why? If you were a character in your story, which would you like to be?
Walter is probably my favourite character from The Forgotten Children and the character I would most like to be. He has had to cope with many difficulties in his life but has found a way to cope. He has learned to let go of anger, knowing how destructive it can be, choosing to immerse himself in nature, working on farms and living in a campervan. He is generous of spirit, thoughtful and compassionate. Emily’s dog, Ralph, immediately senses a kindred spirit and takes to Walter as soon as they meet and dogs are great judges of people.
So, yes, I’d like to be Walter – or at least a female version of him!
How and why did you choose the names for your main characters?
I don’t know how I choose the names of my characters. They just seem to come to me once I start thinking of their personality. Once I start writing about them they feel real, like old friends. When I wrote the Sussex Crime Mysteries I searched the internet for images of each of my main characters so that I could have a visual picture of them in my mind as I wrote about them. But I didn’t do that with The Forgotten Children, although I still have a very vivid image of each one of them and could easily point them out in a crowd!
Find out more about the whole range of titles from Isabella Muir:
Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/IsabellaMuirAuthor/
Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Isabella-Muir/e/B074F18ZSY/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1
A woman’s search to find her son uncovers the shocking truth about one of Britain’s darkest periods
Struggling with the demons of her past, Emily is a children’s author with a dark secret, and a guilt that threatens to consume her. For twenty ye
ars she has lived in Brighton, England, trying to forget the day they took her baby from her, just hours after he was born. But now, in the summer of 1987, she decides to begin the search for her son.
Emily takes refuge in a small town on the Isle of Anglesey to plan the search, where she meets Walter, a gentle stranger, who helps her with his words of wisdom and kindness. But it is when she decides to return home to Hastings, that she really has to face her demons.
Estranged from her parents when she was just sixteen, Emily is shocked by what her mother has to tell her about events that occurred before Emily was even born.
Beside her, throughout her search, is Emily’s beautiful Irish friend, Geraldine, recovering from her own sad experiences. Together they uncover a truth that shocks them all.
The Forgotten Children draws the reader into lives affected by narrow-minded beliefs and blinkered thinking at the highest level. Children who weren’t allowed to be born, children who were abandoned, and children who were taken, forced to lead a life thousands of miles away from everyone and everything they knew – leaving scars that may never heal.
At its heart, The Forgotten Children is a story of survival, but the journey that Emily has to take is painful. Even more so because she knows it was allowed to happen by individuals, religions and governments, who should have known better.
Isabella Muir has been surrounded by books her whole life and – after working for twenty years as a technical editor and having successfully completed her MA in Professional Writing – she was inspired to focus on fiction writing.
As well as her newest title, The Forgotten Children, Isabella is the author of the Sussex Crime Mystery series. These Agatha Christie style stories are set in the sixties and seventies and feature a young librarian and amateur sleuth, Janie Juke, who has a passion for Agatha Christie. All that Janie has learned from her hero, Hercule Poirot, she is able to put into action as she sets off to solve a series of crimes and mysteries.
Aside from books, Isabella has a love of all things caravan-like. She has spent many winters caravanning in Europe and now, together with her husband, she runs a small caravan site in Sussex. They are ably assisted by their much-loved Scottie, Hamish.
Social Media Links –
Win a signed copy of The Forgotten Children (UK Only)
*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome. Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.
Many thanks to Rachel’s Random Resources for providing content for this post and organising the tour it is part of.