Today I’m delighted to welcome CJ Carver back to my blog for my stop on the Tell Me A Lie blog tour today! I have a great guest post to share with you guys but I’ll give you the all important bookish info first!
About the book:
A family in England is massacred, the father left holding the shotgun.
PC Lucy Davies is convinced he’s innocent
A sleeper agent in Moscow requests an urgent meeting with Dan Forrester, referencing their shared past.
His amnesia means he has no idea who he can trust.
An aging oligarch in Siberia gathers his henchmen to discuss an English accountant.
It’s Dan’s wife.
Click HERE to get your copy!
About the author:
CJ Carver is a half-English, half-kiwi, author living just outside Bath. She lived in Australia for ten years before taking up long-distance rally driving – she has driven London to Saigon, London to Cape Town, and completed 14,500 miles on the Inca Trail.
Since then she has written nine novels which have been published in the UK, USA and translated throughout Europe. CJ’s first novel Blood Junction, won the CWA Debut Dagger Award.
CJ is a co-founder and one of the first judges for the Women’s World Car of The Year Award.
CJ loves hearing from her fans. Drop her a line at email@example.com
And now I’ll hand you over to CJ Carver…
How to Take a Slice of Life and Weave it into your Story Structure
I have a friend who’s bipolar. A close friend. One of the best.
She suffers extreme mood swings. Some days she can’t get out of bed, others she’s in the grip of hypomania. She has psychotic episodes. She’s been close to suicide numerous times. Her GP has sectioned her to hospital on several occasions, for her own safety.
She kept her condition secret from everyone, including me, for years. She was terrified we’d think of her differently. That she’d lose her job as well as her friends.
One day, I was allowed to know the truth. I stayed with her for a week on “suicide watch” rather than have her sent to psychiatric hospital (which she hated). When she’s not in the grip of one of her “moods” she’s brilliant and fun, generous and endlessly kind, and I love her to bits.
This slice of life is, when you know it, glaringly obvious when you read Spare Me the Truth. My character, PC Lucy Davies is terrified she’s bipolar, and will do anything to prevent anyone finding out. Her fear is woven through the story and drives Lucy to make decisions she wouldn’t normally.
Writers take inspiration from other people as well as the society they live inside and I’m no exception. We’re parasites of sorts, and even when I went to say goodbye to my dad, who’d died twelve hours earlier, although I was devastated the writer in me couldn’t help looking at the colour of his skin and thinking, how weird, it’s sort of green and it’s got a really strange sheen too, like wax.
When I was travelling in Alaska, I met Shirley Liss, one of the first women to undertake the Yukon Quest 1,000-mile Sled Dog Race. She introduced me to her pack of huskies and showed me a slice of her Alaskan life that became the inspiration for Beneath the Snow.
Shirley knew how to fix an engine, fish for trout, shoot rabbits, skin a moose, build a fire in a snowstorm, deal with a grizzly bear. She was a female Bear Grylls and the stories she told me are woven into my novel along with the ski-plane ride I took north of the Arctic Circle, with three Inuit people and their huskies. That particular experience opens the book nicely.
As writers’ we have to dig deep to produce a work that pulls at a reader’s emotions. We have to put ourselves into our character’s shoes and really feel what they’re feeling. I call on a multitude of life experiences in my writing and get weaving. Not only is it fun, but it makes the story more authentic to the reader.
©CJ Carver 2017
Huge thanks to Emily at Bonnier Zaffre and to CJ Carver for having me on the blog tour!
Make sure to keep up with the tour: