Elle has been a member of the NWS since 2011. She lives in Scotland with her husband and twin sons, who are her best reason to get up in the morning. She loves scones, Coronation Street, all songs by Sara Bareilles and will happily admit to having little or no sense of direction.
Hi Elle, welcome to the Write Romantics Blog and thanks so much for taking the time to be an interviewee.
Hello! It’s lovely to meet fellow members of the NWS and read about your writing experiences so far. I’m very excited to be an interviewee on The Write Romantics blog!
We know that, like us, you are a member of the NWS but we wondered if you could tell us a bit about how you came to join, how long you have been a member, the genre you write in and what inspired you to start writing?
Sure! OK, well, I was about eight when I first decided I wanted to write a book (I see from Alex’s page that she was eight too. Maybe it’s a watershed age!) I wrote chapter headings very much based on a book by Elsie J. Oxenham that my mum had given me, but that was as far as I went.
I’ve always had the feeling that I wanted to write, but I never really believed it was something I could do, nor did I know how to approach it. I thought there was something magical writers had that I didn’t and it wasn’t until I enrolled on a Writers Bureau course when my twins were about to start pre-school that it dawned on me – writing might also be about learning, hard work and practice, just like everything else. The course appealed to me because it covered many forms of non-fiction too, as well as novels, short stories, writing for radio and writing for the stage. I didn’t know what I wanted to (or could) write and the assignments gave me a chance to try a bit of everything. That’s when I knew for sure that this time it was something I was going to pursue further.
I heard about the NWS through twitter and joined in 2011. I write contemporary romance/women’s fiction – I think there might be some different views on the boundary between the two? Applying to join the NWS was one of the best writing moves I’ve ever made.
The Write Romantics see the road to publication, by whatever route, as a journey. Please can you tell us a bit about your journey so far, your self-publishing experiences and what is next for you?
My journey so far has involved trying different things to work out exactly what I want to write. It’s been a lot of fun because I’ve found something that I enjoy and really want to do for the rest of my life, so I’m very lucky.
At the moment I’m working on the first draft of my third book. I’m only about a quarter of the way in – fortunately it’s not the book I’m sending to the NWS this year, because I don’t think it will be in any fit state by August!
Have you got any advice for other aspiring writers?
Hmm…I’m not sure I should be giving out advice, but the main advice I have read or heard from others that has resonated with me is:
● Just get started, even when you don’t feel like it
● Stop second guessing yourself
● Write the story you want to write, otherwise it will show
● Try to learn as much as you can, all the time
There’s so much wonderful information available for writers and I’ve found the following books to be useful:
Plot & Structure – James Scott Bell
From Language to Creative writing: An introduction – Philip Seargeant and Bill Greenwell
Write to be published – Nicola Morgan
And, of course, On Writing – Stephen King
What are your dreams and aspirations as a writer, in terms of your short-term and long-term career?|
At the moment I’m looking for an agent – that’s my main goal. I’m submitting my second book and writing my third as my priorities (Book one is “resting” just now 😉 ), but I also write short stories and keep mulling over the idea of self-publishing a small collection to get the experience. That’s very much a secondary/long term goal though.
Whatever the outcome of any of that, I’m just going to keep writing.
What has been the single biggest benefit of joining the NWS, do you think?
Getting a comprehensive, professional critique at such a reasonable price, I reckon, although it has also been wonderful to make connections with others on the scheme. I haven’t met anyone in person yet, but I’ve found so much support online, mainly through twitter and blogs.
Is there anything else you’d like to share with us or any other advice you can offer?
The world will not implode if you stop panicking and press “send”
I could do with taking this advice myself.
Thanks again for taking the time to share your story so far with us. The Write Romantics wish you every success for the future and we will be keeping a look out on the best seller lists for you!
Thank you so much for having me! Let’s keep in touch! You can find me in all the usual places on my blog, http://elleturnerwriter.wordpress.com Twitter https://twitter.com/elleturner__ (that’s two underscores) and Facebook http://www.facebook.com/elle.turner.1023 if you would like to chat.
Very, very best wishes to the Write Romantics and all the NWSers.