Sunday, 25 June 2017

Fab Firsts - Q&A with Kate Fitzroy

Fab Firsts is my new regular Sunday feature, that is going to be highlighting books that are firsts. When interviewing authors, it will be about their first book, as well as other firsts in their lives. When reviewing books for this feature, there will be a mix of debuts, first books in a series, the first time I read an author, and possibly other firsts depending on what I can think of!

If you are an author wanting to take part in Fab Firsts then please do email on gilbster at gmail dot com and I'll whizz the questions over to you.

I hope you enjoy this look at a variety of hopefully fabulous firsts, while making some sort of dent in my review and paperback TBRs which are my current main focus!

Today I'd like to welcome to Rachel's Random Reads, Kate Fitzroy.

1) Can you tell us a bit about your first book?

My first book was never published… understandably as the main protagonist fell down a rabbit hole and I was only eight at the time 

2) What was your original inspiration to become a writer, and to write your debut?

I think it’s a natural progression to move from loving to read to becoming a writer. My original inspiration was a monthly competition in a long-lost magazine called the Elizabethan. I won prize money twice and it was a most welcome addition to my spasmodic pocket money.

3) How long did it take you to write your first book?

I wrote Perfume of Provence in five months but then I lived in a remote corner of the Loire Valley and have a most understanding husband.

4) If you could do anything differently in retrospect, what would you change about your debut, or how you went about writing it?

I am smugly content with my debut. Carina published my first two books and I enjoyed working with them, although I never liked their covers. I jumped from that platform into Indie publishing with KDP and Create Space. I enjoy the autonomy… and higher royalties.

5) Was your first book self or traditionally published, and how did you go about making that decision?

I am sure everyone has their own method of working to their best potential. I like to write from 6 am until 8 am nearly every day and it is a habit or maybe an addiction. I then have my day free for family and friends and, if I have time, I edit and prettify the text in the afternoons. 

6) Do you have any tips for other first time authors?

I always, always have a notebook or use my mobile to capture any ideas that fly into my head at odd moments… or a snatch of a conversation… sometimes waking from a dream, I write in the dark on my bedside notepad!

Tell us about your first…

7) Book you bought

The first book I bought for myself, rather than those bought for me, was ‘Lorna Doone’. I spent my aforementioned prize money on a delicious turquoise leather-bound edition. It was the first in a special classic collection and I was determined to buy them all. The next was a jolly red leather edition of Father Brown’s Stories and then… I must have given up… or the series floundered… but I do still have them both and love them dearly.

8) Memory

Looking up at a pattern of apple leaves and branches outlined against a shimmering blue sky. I am told my pram used to be parked under a large apple tree so maybe I could have been a second Newton if only I had been mathematically minded. As it is, I love blue skies so much that I went to live on the Cote d’Azur when I was twenty-one

9) Person you fell in love with

I am not sure if it was love or infatuation but he was an assistant golf pro who looked like James Dean and rode a motor bike. Naturally, my parents forbade me to go anywhere with him off the golf course. So, I jumped on the back of his bike one evening and went to Southend-on-Sea. He turned out to be surprisingly gentlemanly and treated me to an ice cream and returned me home. It was some time before I realised he had only been after my high handicap for mixed foursome competitions!  

10)  Holiday you went on

My unusual parents decided to board a boat in Newcastle (I think) and cross the North Sea to Norway for a skiing holiday. It was an extraordinary trip and I learnt to go up mountains with reindeer skins strapped to my very long narrow skis and cross over vast frozen lakes. I don’t remember much downhill skiing, except once when I had lost my right ski in a ravine and was rescued by Olaf who put me on his shoulders and ski-ed back down to the village, ducking low beneath snow-laden branches in a pine forest.  I was seven. 

Thank you so much Kate for answering my questions. What a fabulous sounding first holiday, and love the story about your first love!

Author Bio

Kate Fitzroy has two lives. One in a flinty Victorian cottage in Newmarket, where she awakes to the clatter of horses' hooves as strings of racehorses pass early each morning. Kate's other life is played out in a Napoleonic manor set in a sleepy village amongst the vineyards of the Loire valley. 

Her life has not always been so blissful. Widowed at the age of twenty-one, already with two children to love and protect, she fought her way up as hard a path as any of her heroines. Now happily married and surrounded by a large, loving family, Kate enjoys every moment of every day... CARPE DIEM... TEMPUS FUGIT.... or should that be CARPE MOMENTUM?

Kate on Twitter
Kate on Amazon

1 comment:

  1. Wow... opening this email was a Monday morning surprise! I must have completed this questionnaire some while ago, so I was interested to read my replies. All so true... sweet rather than bitter. My early sunny years came to grief when I was 21 and widowed with two children. But... all is nearly well again now. Thank you, Rachel for making me reflect about my own life this Monday morning.


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