Today, I’m welcoming Melissa Hudson for an author interview.
She is the author of Lessons in the Dark and Bloodless.
What/who inspired you to become a writer??
I began writing when I was on maternity leave - I had always wanted to write but until Hannah was born I’d always worked full-time and never seemed to find the opportunity. When several magazines accepted the stories I had written I gained the confidence to begin work on a book.
Do you have a favorite genre of book that you like to read/write? If so, why??
I love to read all sorts of books but my favourite genre is crime fiction as I love intrigue and a fast pace.
What helping aids do you use to focus when you write? Music?? Nature???
When I’m stuck for words I usually go for a walk in the local woods - I find this an enormous help and usually so many ideas come to me that I can’t wait to get back and note them all down before I forget them all.
What character(s) of your book(s) do you relate to the most??
I think I relate to Narelle the most. She is a foster carer and after the initial panic when a new placement arrives, she begins to relax and her love for the children takes over everything else.
What words of wisdom would you like to share with aspiring writers like myself? Never take no for an answer!
How do you visualize your stories?? In pictures?? Conversations? Dreams?
Some of the stories I have written have arisen from dreams though mostly I visualise them, particularly in the bath!
What are your writing goals for the next 5 years??
I’d like to write a sequel to both Lessons in the Dark and Bloodless. I have the story arcs plotted for both. Now all I have to do is find the time!
How long did it take you to write ?? What/who inspired these books??
It took 1 year to write Lessons in the Dark. I was inspired to write it following the end of a long-term placement. I looked after two siblings for two years. They were tiny when they arrived and I grew to love them dearly. When they left me I was heartbroken. I wanted to find a positive way of dealing with all the emotion and also wanted to create something to show them, when they’re older, how special they were (and are) to me.
Lessons in the Dark is based on the time I spent with them and the relationship I built with their birth mother.
If you could have dinner with someone dead or alive, famous or not famous, who would it be and why??
There are so many! It would be so difficult to choose. Jesus - I’d have so many questions to ask him. Madeleine McCann - I have just finished reading the book by her mother and it left me feeling extremely sad for all of them. Guy Fawkes - to find out what really happened.
What made you decide to jump on the E-book trade?? And how do you feel about it??
I have had several non-fiction books published traditionally but after lots of interest and encouragement from several agents, couldn’t make that final hurdle of gaining a deal with a traditional publisher for my novels.
I’m pleased I went for the E-books, although it’s all new to me and I’m still learning how to market myself.
If you found yourself on a deserted island, what 10 things would you take and why?
As long as I had my children and my toothbrush I wouldn’t worry about anything else. I love their company and they keep me buoyed up so that’s all I would need.
How do you write your books?? Are you by the seat of your pants writer or do you plot out your books in advance??
I plot everything in advance, a condensed version. I then split into chapter and jot down basic notes for each with locations etc. I prefer to work with a notepad and pen for the early stages, I find thoughts come to me easier this way.
And last by not least, if you could time travel what period of the history of future would you go to??
I think I would go back to the fifties or sixties, to a time when you could leave your front door open and children played in the street.