Welcome to Clubhouse Chat page. Those of you who are not a member won’t be aware that the location of the Clubhouse is shrouded in mystery. The only way to visit it is via membership or an invite to the tearoom. Every few days, I’ll be sharing a conversation with all sort of writers and authors at different levels of their writing careers. Over tea and cakes, or maybe a glass of something stronger, I shall be chatting with my guest about their work in progress, or latest book release.
Today I’m chatting to Claire. Welcome to the tearoom.
Thank you Paula for inviting me for a cup of tea – I enjoy a good cuppa.
Let’s start by asking you when you first began your writing journey what drew you to your chosen genre?
I was looking through magazines in W H Smith when I came across articles on subjects that I enjoy i.e. bread making, ceramics, hand spinning and gardening. After a lot of thought I decided that I may be able to write an article about hand spinning as I felt I knew enough about the subject, having taught it at workshops which I held in Exeter. After writing the articles for a few months for national magazines I was lucky enough to get an advance to write Hand Spinning and Natural Dyeing. This lead to me writing two novels based in London.
What writing elements do you think is your strongest points, and what would you like to do better?
I love writing about life in London especially during the 60s and 70s when I lived there. I find it easy to get the story to flow. My dream is to write a crime book but I wouldn’t know where to start.
Tell us a little about latest writing project. Is it a new idea, or one you have been mulling over for some time?
I’ve been mulling this story over for some time and at last I have started writing about a young lady that lives in a bedsitter in Covent Garden, before living here she was living on the streets in London.
Were any of your characters inspired by real people?
I don’t base any of my books on real people. I always carry a note book in my handbag then if someone says something to me that amuses me I jot it down and may use it in a story.
What did you learn when writing your book? In writing it, how much research did you do?
I did quite a bit of research for both my books. I was forever looking up roads in the A-Z or on google maps.
Is there anything about you your readers might be surprised to find out?
Not many people will know that I went to an army school in Singapore for two years.
Did you uncover things about yourself while writing your books, whether that be a long forgotten memory, a positive experience etc.
While writing my first novel –If Only I’d Listened I remembered how I used to tell stories to my school friends and found it amusing when they believed what I said.
How long on average does it take you to write a book?
When I wrote the hand spinning book I signed a contract saying I had to finish it in 9 months. I settled down at 9am most mornings and kept writing until lunch time when I went for a short walk around the block. In the afternoons I spent my time checking what I had written that morning.
Thank you so much for chatting with me in the tearoom. Brutus will bring the car round when you’re ready to leave, Claire.
Here’s a link to Claire’s Amazon Author’s Page
If you want to find out more about Clubhouse Member’s Books don’t forget to check out the Clubhouse Bookshops too.