Thursday, 19 September 2013

Elaine Jeremiah - The Inheritance

Today I have Elaine Jeremiah on the blog talking about her debut novel, The Inheritance. So without further delay, I welcome her to the blog.

The Inheritance
Follow Elaine on Twitter @ElaineJeremiah
"When Emma uses blackmail to force her father into giving her the inheritance owing to her early, it sets in motion a chain of events that will change the lives of her and her elder sister Kate forever. Although Emma and Kate have grown up on their father’s farm together, they each want two very different things. Emma is fed up with her boring, suffocating lifestyle and longs to break free. Kate by contrast is happy living and working for her father on the farm and can’t understand her sister’s urgency to leave.

With her inheritance, Emma is soon off to London with her wealthy friend Natalie. She begins to live a life of luxury whilst her sister Kate is left hard at work on the farm. But things are not all they seem. Before long Emma is finding that London life is not all roses, whilst Kate is forced to re-evaluate what it is she wants from life. And even though Kate and her father are living in the middle of nowhere, she discovers that a past relationship may pose a present danger to her. "


Hi Elaine, welcome to the blog!
What inspired you to start writing?

I can’t really say there’s one specific thing that inspired me to start writing.  I think it was a combination of things.  I’ve always loved reading as well as writing and I guess that reading and enjoying books did in part inspire me and make me want to be an author.  Also creative writing projects when I was at primary school and in the early years of secondary school made me realize that I enjoyed writing, that I was good at it and that it was something I wanted to carry on with.

Do you have a specific writing style and has it changed over the years?

I used to write mostly in the first person but now it’s mainly in the third person.  That’s not been a deliberate choice; it’s just how my writing has developed.  I tend to just start writing and go with what feels right.  But really I’m happy with either.  I also write in the past tense, although I have dabbled with the present tense.  I think I feel more comfortable with writing in the past tense, though I do like the immediacy of writing in the present tense.

How did you come up with the title of your latest novel?

The title for this novel was pretty easy to come up with.  The main thrust of the novel is what happens when one of the main characters, Emma the younger sister, blackmails her father into giving her the portion of the inheritance that is owed to her and her elder sister Kate when they’re twenty five.  So calling the novel ‘The Inheritance’ seemed to fit well with the narrative of the story.

Are events and experiences in your work ever based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

Yes, definitely.  Not this novel so much but other stories I’ve worked on are very much based on events in my own life.  As a teenager I suffered a serious break down which inspired me to write a story that I haven’t finished and haven’t touched for years.  It’s very autobiographical.  And my current work in progress has elements to it that were inspired by my unhappiness at school.

How long did it take you to write your current novel?

I started planning it at the end of 2011 and then it took me pretty much all of last year (2012) to write.


When do your best ideas come to you?

Anytime really, though mostly when I’m not too tired.  I’m always meaning to keep a little notebook to hand so that if good ideas come to me I can write them down, otherwise I can forget.  Haven’t quite got round to doing that yet so writing the answers for this interview is a good reminder for me!

If you could be one of your characters - Who would you be? And why?

I think although personality-wise I’m more like Kate, I’d love to be more like Emma.  This is because she knows how to stick up for herself, which is something I struggle with.  She’s feisty and confident.  She’s also – at least for much of the novel – selfish and self centred and I wouldn’t like to be too much like that.
 
What is one of your guilty pleasures to enjoy?

I love watching a good old chick flick in the evening, especially in the winter when it’s freezing cold outside.  I huddle under a blanket with the fire on and my dog to keep me company.

What are at least five things you have on your bucket list and have you done any of them?

·        Go to America – I’ve been to New York but I really want to go to California, in particular San Francisco because it looks amazing.

·        Pass my driving test – I did pass nearly five years ago, so I’m not sure that counts.  But it did take me over eleven years (with lots of breaks I might add), was on my wish list of things I wanted to achieve for many years and I’m always amazed that I’ve done it.

·        I’d love to have copies of a novel I’ve written on sale in Waterstone’s and WHSmith.  Not sure I’ll get there, but self publishing ‘The Inheritance’ is a step along the way.

·        Make some money from writing – even if it isn’t much some would be nice and a real achievement.

·        Go to Venice and take a trip on a gondola.

  
Finally, tell us five random things about yourself.

·        I grew up in Hampshire not far from Winchester where Jane Austen is buried.  My dad used to take me and my siblings to buy books as a special treat from a bookshop which was literally a few doors down from the house where Jane Austen died.

·        I’m a Jane Austen fanatic.  I’ve got copies of all her novels and unfinished work, I’ve read spin-off books as well as loads of biographies and I’ve watched all the film & TV adaptations, most of which I own on DVD.  In fact I have different adaptations of the same Austen novels on DVD.

·        My favourite chocolate is Cadbury’s Dairy Milk.  Not very exciting I know but I just love it.  So smooth and creamy.  Mmm.

·        When I was about eleven I decided I really wanted to be an actress.  I’d picture myself winning the best actress Oscar.  Sadly it didn’t happen. L

·        I met my husband at a castle.  We were members of a re-enactment society which re-enacted Norman battles and Norman living covering the period in history from 1066 to 1215.  It was a lot of fun but very tiring and we’ve given it up now.
 
 

Check out The Inheritance at:

Amazon UK >
Amazon US >
Elaine's blog>