Lynsey James was born in Fife in 1991 and has been telling people how to spell her name ever since. She's an incurable bookworm who loves nothing more than getting lost in a good story with memorable characters. She started writing when she was really young and credits her lovely Grandad- and possibly a bump on the head from a Mr Frosty machine- with her love of telling stories. She used to write her own episodes of Friends and act them out in front of her family (in fact she's sure she put Ross and Rachel together first!)
A careers adviser at school once told Lynsey writing wasn’t a “good option” and for a few years, she believed her. She tried a little bit of everything, including make-up artistry, teaching and doing admin for a chocolate fountain company. The free chocolate was brilliant. When Lynsey left my job a couple of years ago, she started writing full-time while she looked for another one. As soon as she started working on her story, Lynsey fell in love and decided to finally pursue her dream. She haven’t looked back since.
When Lynsey's not writing, eating cake or drinking tea, she's daydreaming about the day Dylan O’Brien FINALLY realises they're meant to be together. It’ll happen one day…
1.Have you always wanted to get into writing? Always! I’ve been writing since I was young, but it was only after I quit my job in April 2013 that I decided to really give it a go. I’d written and submitted a story before, but was rejected. I started writing my book, Just the Way You Are, just after I quit and I signed with Carina UK in December 2014.
2.Who are some of your favourite authors? My main favourites are Mhairi McFarlane, Graeme Simsion, Kirsty Greenwood, Lucy Robinson and Harriet Evans. I love the way they tell stories and their unforgettable characters that stay with you long after you reach the end. Natalie Butterworth from Yours Truly is probably one of my favourite characters of all time. I’ve also just started reading Dorothy Koomson and have a feeling she could become a favourite too.
3.Who inspires you? My wonderful friends and family inspire me every day (cheese alert!). My mum and my best friends Jenny and Katja are three of the funniest women I know; I can get ideas for a whole story based off things they say in conversation.
4.What are some of your favourite books? My all-time favourite books are The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion and I Remember You by Harriet Evans. I can read them over and over again and still find new things to love about them.
5. Can you tell us a little about your book? Sure! It’s a contemporary romance novel about a young journalist named Ava, who goes on a quest to find the sender of some mysterious love letters. There are delicious romantic heroes, plenty of love letters, a sprinkle of magic and a jazz singer named Ivy St Clair. It’s being released on May 8th by Carina UK.
6. What do you do when you're not writing? I enjoy spending time with my family, including my dog Dixie a.k.a my fluffy baby. I also enjoy seeing my friends, eating more cake than necessary and watching Jesse Eisenberg movies.
About the book
Publication Date:8 May 2015 Dear Ava,How do you start writing a letter to someone, six years after breaking their heart?
Ava is unlucky in love as well as in life. The new office bitch has landed the dating column Ava wanted, and she can't remember the last time she had a second date. It's a good thing she has best friends Max and Gwen to pick up the pieces.
Deep down, Ava knows the reason why one date never turns into two - she's in love with someone else. Someone she's never even met.
It all started six years ago, with a letter from a secret admirer, Mr Writer…but then they suddenly stopped and Ava was heartbroken.
Now the letters have started again and Ava knows it could mean winning back the dating column at work. This time she's determined to unmask Mr Writer...and find out once and for all if he's Mr Right or Mr Very Definitely Wrong!
Heather is the author of the Faerynn Chronicles (the first novel is currently available for purchase in paperback or ebook) and a currently running serial novel on Channillo.com. She graduated from West Chester University of PA with a degree in communications, married her high school sweetheart, and now lives in an uninsulated, ancient farmhouse that belonged to her grandparents. It's a fractured faerie tale in real life. She also has an alter ego who teaches junior high English and theatre. When she's not writing, Heather enjoys eating Cheetos (but never the puffy kind), collecting Burt's Bees lip balms, and drinking all of the hot beverages. Website - book link
Hi! I’m Jenny - a book and lifestyle blogger from London. My biggest passion is books and reading and I’d love to have my own book one day. Aside from reading and blogging, I’m a massive Disney fanatic, obsessive Chinese takeaway eater and constant dreamer. I also like films, travel and cooking.
1. What got you into blogging? I got into blogging by finding someone else’s book blog when I was Googling reviews for the book I was reading. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing - I didn’t know book blogging was a “thing” so I had a look around her blog and loved what I was reading, so I emailed the blogger and asked for her advice. So really, it’s more like who got me into blogging in this case!
2. Who are some of your favourite bloggers? Oh heavens this is too hard! There are so many incredible blogs out there. I’ll list a few here: Absolutely Lucy, Laura’s Little Book Blog, Wanderness, The Lilac Scrapbook, Becky Bed Bug, Sky’s Book Corner, Crime Worm, Beauty Books and Babble - oh god I’ll be here forever!
3. What has been some of the best books you have reviewed on your blog? Ohh I’ve been lucky enough to read some amazing books - some which Ive bought myself and others which have been review copies. The book’s I’ve bought myself and reviewed on my blog are The Book Thief, The Perks of Being a Wallflower and a whole bunch of John Green’s - which are my favourites. Some of the best review copies I’ve reviewed: Zig Zag Girl by Elly Griffiths, One Hundred Proposals by Holly Martin, The Boat by Clara Salaman and The Ice Twins by S.K Tremayne!
4. When did you start blogging? I started blogging around March/April, 2013. So it’s drawing near to my 2nd blogoversary!
5. What do you love about being a blogger? There is SO MUCH I love about being a blogger. Its one of the most rewarding hobbies I have ever had. I love having my own little space on the internet where I can completely be myself and express myself and my opinions on things. I love being able to interact with likeminded bloggers and have chats about books, films, travel and life in general. Having the priveledge to be in contact with authors and publishers is incredible and something I never thought I’d have the chance to do. The main thing I love about blogger is all the people I’ve met and friends I’ve made along the way. Nobody can say that online friends aren’t as important or don’t mean as much just because you met them online.
Laura Salters is a YA/NA suspense author (represented by Suzie Townsend of New Leaf Literary & Media Inc) from Berwick-upon-Tweed, the northernmost town in England. Her debut novel, RUN AWAY, will be published by HarperCollins (Witness Impulse) on 05/05/15. When Laura isn't writing, reading or thinking about writing or reading, she's a music lover (and terrible singer), pet cuddler, beach-goer, runner (*cough* jogger), passionate foodie, caffeine addict, tennis player, lipstick wearer, Harry Potter fangirl (yes, still), housework dodger and relentless chatterbox.
Where did the idea come from for your story? I’d been going through a two year-long phase of obsessively reading crime fiction, from courtroom dramas to fast-paced thrillers to cosy mysteries. And I kept seeing the same protagonists over and over again: the exiled detective determined to prove himself, the fiesty young cop, the former FBI agent. And I just thought, what would happen if I threw some of John Green’s characters into a Harlan Coben-style situation? What would happen if a drunken party holiday turned bad? I’ve used all the components I love to read in RUN AWAY – witty banter, exotic locations, psychological suspense. I hope the result is as exciting as I wanted it to be! Have you always wanted to be a writer? I’d be lying if I said yes! I mean, you can attach meaning to anything in retrospect. So while I’ve always loved to read and write, I don’t remember consciously thinking, “Yes, this is what I need to do with my life.” Throughout the years, I’ve wanted to be an artist, a vet, an actress, a fashion designer, a doctor, an entrepreneur...but the writing thing seemed to prevail through it all. And when I found myself studying a creative writing module during my journalism degree, that’s when the penny dropped. As cliché as it sounds, it was a lightning bolt moment. I knew I’d found my passion.
Who inspires you? So many people! Mainly kick-ass women. Malala Yousafzai, Emma Watson, Sophia Bush, Mindy Kaling, Amy Poehler, Tina Fey, Michelle Obama, JK Rowling. My mum. My best friend, Toria, and her beautiful daughter Millie. Any tips for people who want to become authors? Persevere. Even when you think your work sucks, persevere. You wouldn’t get halfway through a marathon and think, “Well, I’ve got this far, but I think I could have done it better, so I’ll go back and do the first half again.” It’s the same with writing – don’t get halfway through a project and be tempted to go back and edit the first half. Reach the end. Once you have a first draft, then you can think about editing, restructuring and polishing. Oh, and you should, you know, still go outside and stuff. Don’t let writing take over your life. Look after yourself, socialise, work out, relax. Writers burn out a lot, and it’s entirely our own fault. It’s so important to maintain balance in your life. How do you get past writers’ block? I don’t believe in writers’ block! I worked as a magazine journalist for two years, and in that industry, you just have to churn out thousands of words a day, even if you’re not feeling it. You have to let go of preciousness and self-awareness and just...write. That’s trained me well for a career in fiction writing – I tend to power through most blah days!
Who are some of your favourite authors? There’s the obvious ones, like JK Rowling and JRR Tolkien, and my childhood wouldn’t have been so imaginative and creative if it wasn’t for Enid Blyton and her fantastical worlds (and she legitimately named two kids’ characters Dick and Fanny, which will never not be hilarious). In terms of crime and mystery, I love Sophie Hannah, SJ Bolton and Gillian Flynn. And lately I’ve been on a huge YA dystopian/fantasy kick, so I’m loving Victoria Aveyard, Sara Raasch, Leigh Bardugo, Veronica Roth (all my New Leaf sisters!) and Tahereh Mafi. I’m sure if you ask me again next month, my answers will be completely different!
Drenched in blood and sitting in the sweltering interview room of a Thai police station, Kayla Finch knows that Sam, the love of her life, is dead. It doesn't matter that there's no body. All that blood can only mean one thing. It isn't the first time Kayla's had blood on her hands. After finding her brother dead by his own hand, she tried to outrun her grief by escaping to Thailand. Heart-broken, the last thing she expected was to find love on the smoggy streets of Bangkok. But everyone Kayla loves seems to wind up dead.
Returning home to England, Kayla is left with a barely-functioning family, a string of gruesome nightmares and the niggling feeling that nothing is as it seems. And as she confronts her brother's suicide, she starts to suspect that something is very wrong. Three months. Two tragedies. One connection: there's more to both cases than anyone is willing to admit. And Kayla’s determined to uncover the truth…no matter what the cost.
Carys Jones loves nothing more than to write and create stories which ignite the reader's imagination. Based in Shropshire, England, Carys lives with her husband, two guinea pigs and her adored canine companion Rollo.
When she's not writing, Carys likes to indulge her inner geek by watching science- fiction films or playing video games.
She lists John Green, Jodi Picoult and Virginia Andrews as her favorite authors and draws inspiration for her own work from anything and everything.
To Carys, there is no greater feeling then when you lose yourself in a great story and it is that feeling of ultimate escapism which she tries to bring to her books.
For more information about Carys please visit www.carys-jones.com or follow her on Twitter; @tiny_dancer85
1. What got you into writing?
Growing up I was always an avid reader. My favourite part of each day was the half hour before I’d go to sleep when I’d sit and read in bed. I used to love losing myself in stories like Ballet Shoes and Little House on the Prairie. I thought it was magical that books could transport me away from my little corner of rain soaked England into another world.
I was keen to create some of that magic for myself so I started writing short stories when I was eight which I used to charge my poor Dad ten pence to read. I loved writing as much as I loved reading and those feelings only grew as time went on. When I became a teenager I knew with complete certainty that I wanted to be a writer.
2. Who are some of your favourite authors?
I love anything by Jodi Picoult and John Green. I’m also a big fan of Virginia Andrews and have recently discovered Becca Fitzpatrick and am eager to read more of her books. I like stories bursting with emotion, stories that surprise me.
3. Tell us about your book.
Dare to Dream is a contemporary British young adult novel. I think the blurb does a great job of describing the story;
“The world was going to end. Of that, Maggie Trafford was certain.”
Fourteen-year-old Maggie Trafford leads a normal life. Well, as normal as being crammed in a three-bedroom house with four siblings and a single parent can be, anyway. But despite being somewhat ignored at home, Maggie excels, earning top grades, a best friend who would do anything for her, and stolen looks from a boy in Maths.
It’s not until the dreams start that Maggie realizes “normal” is the least of her problems. Every night, she lives the same nightmare—red lightning, shattered glass, destruction. But nightmares are just that, right? No one believes her when she says it’s an omen. At least, not until the already mysterious pillars of Stonehenge start falling.
No longer alone in her fear, Maggie and the world watch with bated breath as one after another, the historic stones tumble, like a clock counting down. But only Maggie knows what it means: when the last stone falls, destruction will reign. And when the world ends, there’s only one option left—survive.
Horrifying and raw, Dare to Dream is equal parts tragedy and hope, detailing the aftermath of apocalyptic catastrophe, the quest for survival, and the importance of belief.
4. Have you always wanted to be an author?
Absolutely. Finding the right career is like trying on loads of different shoes. Being an author is the only career choice which has ever fit me perfectly. If I wasn’t writing I honestly don’t know what I’d be doing as there’s nothing else which brings me as much happiness.
5. Were the characters in your book based on anyone you know?
No, I don’t tend to base the characters in my books on anyone as I feel there is too much danger in it. I’d hate someone to think a character was based on them and then that character does something awful or dies and the person reads too much in to that. So if anyone reads my books and thinks a character is based on them I can promise that it’s merely a coincidence.