Some of my most creative thoughts happen when on a dog walk, as do my best conversations with my dog-walking buddy. So I thought I’d invite some of my author friends along to join me and my Ruby and see if I can find out a little more about them and the book they’ve just released.
Ruby and I are delighted to have Anita Dawes, one half of the duo who have written this book, join us today.
Anita Dawes has been writing unusual fiction for the last 22 years. Her favourite novel, ‘Bad Moon’ has been circulated to all the best mainstream publishers over the years and their comments were inspiring to say the least. Averil Ashfield at Transworld said it was a powerful story… and Andy Mckillop at Arrow said that her imagination had a thoroughly nasty streak…
She tends to alternate between ‘horror’ and the ‘supernatural’, although all of her novels are based on different kinds of family units. It has been said that her writing is not for the fainthearted!
However, I think what she is releasing now is something a bit different from her more usual horror or supernatural…
Hi Anita, I hope you’re ready for a hike across the fields of sunny Cambridgeshire?
Hi Georgia, I have never been to Cambridgeshire before, the weather is glorious, so really looking forward to our walk.
Well now you’ve got my undivided attention, Anita, this is your chance to tell me all about Lazy Days and convince your readers to buy it and move it up their to-be-read list?
It means so much to our family to have Lazy Days immortalised in print. 40 years ago we decided that even though we couldn’t afford it, we wanted to have a family holiday, dogs and all! We thought of all the different things we could do, but something was drawing us to water and some kind of craft big enough for us all.
The River Thames was close to us in South London, but all the Locks we would encounter didn’t really appeal. We had to think of the safety factor too.
Someone suggested the Norfolk Broads, and although it was miles away, the idea took hold and the decision was made. We didn’t have much money back then and had to save up for months to be able to afford it, but we were so glad we did. We had no idea what to expect, or what would happen when we got there.
The Blurb, written by Jaye:
This novella is the true story of our family’s first proper holiday back in the Seventies. Looking back, I wonder what made us think it was a good idea, but despite all the things that could have gone wrong, we had a fantastic time. I was the Skipper most of the time, and for some reason decided to record our adventures in a small notebook. We were young and without husbands, Anita was a widow, and I was glad to be rid of mine (and that is another story.) Money was precious and scarce back then, but all the saving and sacrifice turned out to be worth every single memory we all cherish.
This notebook has been treasured and kept safe, despite numerous house moves and family disasters, as a symbol of our courage and determination. Renting a boat on the Norfolk Broads could so easily have been one of the stupidest things we had ever done, but even after 40 years, we have such good memories of that time.
Over the years, we often thought of making it into a proper book, but along with everything else in our often-complicated family life, it was something we never got around to. Until just recently, when we were looking for some old photographs, found the now fragile notebook and knew it was time.
It wasn’t as easy as we imagined it would be either, for our logbook writing skills leave a lot to be desired, but there was just enough information entered on those pages to get us started.
I believe you write with a partner, your sister. How does that work and do you suffer any sibling rivalry?
You ask if there is any sibling rivalry between us, but there always is between sisters, isn’t there? Rather a sweet description of what happens in our house, for when we are brainstorming one of our books, the air can be pretty volatile and several different shades of blue! But despite our infamous rows, we have produced some amazing work between us.
I know you’re an indie author Anita, but we all need help at various stages of writing and I’d like to know more about the team you have behind you. Who helps you pull your books together until they’re ready to be published?
It is just the two of us on our team, and we each have different skills so most of the time it works well. We do use beta readers whenever possible, but Jaye is a wonder. What she doesn’t know, she will research like crazy until she can master whatever it is. Her computer has been known to holler ‘uncle’ when she has a bee in her bonnet!
(I was amazed to see from your bio on Amazon that Jaye is typist, editor, proof reader and publisher rolled into one – an excellent person to have in your corner! Ed)
If you could choose to be any character out of any book you’ve written, who would you choose? And why?
It would have to be Maggie from The Scarlet Ribbon because time travel and the supernatural fascinate me. Think of all the things we could learn if we could travel back in time.
Jaye actually is one of her characters. Kate, from Nine Lives, is almost totally autobiographical. Kate is an artist though, something Jaye has always wanted to be.
A few quick fire ones.
India or Iceland?
Neither country appeals, as I don’t like extremes of temperature, but I would visit India if it wasn’t so flipping hot!
Sunsets or sunrises?
I love both with equal measure. Nature is the only force on this planet without fault.
Which superpower would you like to have? And Why?
If I could choose a superpower, it would be invisibility. Think of all the places you could go if no one could see you! Think of all the stories just waiting to be discovered.
What piece of advice would you like to give your 16-year-old self – if you were given the opportunity to use a time machine!?
I remember what I was like at 16, all the things I needed and never had. I could have handled it better if someone had explained everything to me. Instead, I spent far too much time being angry, something I know didn’t help much.
I believe that perfect days are unplanned, BUT if you were to plan your perfect day what would it look like?
My perfect day would be the day I read a great book, wish I hadn’t, so I could read it again…
(Ah, yes, I recognise that desire to finish a book so you know what happens, while at the same time never wanting it to end, Ed)
Thanks for joining me Anita and I wish you every success for the sales of Lazy Days, which readers can find here…
You can find Anita and Jaye here:
Anita’s Author Page/Amazon Link : https://Author.to/AnitaLink
Jaye’s Author Page/Amazon Link: https://Author.to/JayeLink
This is a terrifically busy launch as there are events happening on Facebook too!
Here is the link if you want to find out more about their Book Tour Quiz:
And, there are many more blog posts to follow on this Grand Tour!