Lynda Renham has been writing for as long as she can remember and had her first work published in a magazine at age nine and has continued writing in various forms since. She has had several poems published as well as articles in numerous magazines and newspapers. Recently she has taken part in radio discussions on the BBC. She has studied literature and creative writing and has a blog on her web page: www.renham.co.uk Lynda lives with her second husband and cat in Oxfordshire, England. She is Associate Editor for the online magazine The Scavenger and contributor to many others. When not writing Lynda can usually be found wasting her time on Facebook.
Time to chat with Lynda!
What is your latest book?
I have two new books out at present. A Romantic Comedy which is the normal genre I write and also a romantic series. The comedy is titled Perfect Weddings and the romance series are titled A Village Romance and A Summer Romance.
Is your recent book part of a series?
A Village Romance and A Summer Romance are part of a series named ‘Little Perran.’
Do you write under a pen name? If so, can you tell us why?
I write The Little Perran romance series under the name Amy Perfect. I did this to differentiate the series from my usual romantic comedy books. They are more romantic in style to the comedy novels.
How did you choose the genre you write in? Or did it choose you?
I chose to write romantic comedy after my contemporary romance novels didn’t sell.
I had a severe migraine and watched The Holiday movie to take my mind off things. I then wondered if it were possible to write a feel good novel. I wrote Croissants and Jam, which sold very well and I’ve never looked back. I rather think the genre chose me.
How often do your characters surprise you by doing or saying something totally unexpected?
Oh often. It’s what I like most about writing. The character Birdie in A Village Romance and A Summer Romance, took me totally by surprise though. I really wasn’t expecting what happened to her. You’ll have to read the book to find out what, of course.
What part of writing a novel do you enjoy the most? The least?
Truthfully I enjoy the ending and the promotion. I truly find writing very hard. It seems to flow but it really is agony and I’m sure many writers would say that. I’m also a terrible procrastinator so when the end comes I’m ecstatic that I even got that far. How I have written eleven novels in just four years never ceases to amaze me. I’m that much of a procrastinator.
After working for a very long time on a novel, many authors get to a point where they lose their objectivity and feel unable to judge their own work. Has this ever happened to you? If so, what have you done about it?
Yes, this has happened to me. I re-read the novels so many times when I’m writing that I reach that point where I am convinced the whole thing is rubbish. My husband is my fiercest critic and is the first to read and edit my work. He keeps me grounded and tells me when it is good. I trust his judgement and allow it to over- ride my own.
What have you done to market your novel and what did you find the most effective? The least effective?
I used to do a lot of marketing. I would promote the books on social media. Contact online book reviewers and so on. I spent more time promoting than I did writing. Then these past weeks I have been ill and could not do anything really except lay around and feel sorry for myself. The book sold loads without me doing anything which made me wonder if promotion actually does anything. I think you maybe need to do it when you start out but after that I think it doesn’t make much difference. After all tweets disappear so fast and there are only so many people who see your posts on Facebook. I think the best thing a writer can do is write good books.
Having our work out there to be judged by strangers is often daunting for writers. Do you have any tips on handling a negative review?
Accept it for what it is, simply someone’s opinion which is to be expected if you put yourself out there. Having said that some reviews are unacceptable and I have experienced some horrid reviews but these have been written by an online stalker and have been removed by Amazon. So, if an author feels a review is truly objectionable then one should contact Amazon. Otherwise I think it best to overlook the bad review and simply plod on and remember the good reviews.
Do you ever suffer from writer’s block? If so, how do you get around it?
Oh yes, too much. I feel like I have permanent writers block. I would like to give advice on getting round it but the truth is I have no easy answers. I tend to continue writing no matter what. I like to think that somewhere in the rubbish there is a little bit of gold and that I can work with that.
Where do you live now? If you had to move to another city/state/country, where might that be?
I live in a small village in the Cotwolds in Oxfordshire, England. Everyone knows everyone and we spend a lot of time going to village activities. I love it. At Christmas we have lots of party invitations. I love being part of a village and write about village life in my Little Perran series.
What’s your favorite comfort food? Least favorite food?
Chocolate is my comfort food. I adore it. I hate cabbage. Always have.
What might we be surprised to know about you?
I used to have a terrible stutter.
What makes you angry?
What music soothes your soul?
Classical music and Adele
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