Today I have the adorable Kirsty Ferry on my blog with a little Q&A. Her novel The Girl In The Painting was launched on the 7th of March along with The Girl In The Photograph. Thanks for Choc Lit Books for inviting me to take part.
About The Book
Out in Paperback
The Girl in the Painting
What if you thought you knew a secret that could change history?
Whilst standing engrossed in her favourite Pre-Raphaelite painting – Millais’s Ophelia – Cori catches the eye of Tate gallery worker, Simon, who is immediately struck by her resemblance to the red-haired beauty in the famous artwork.
The attraction is mutual, but Cori has other things on her mind. She has recently acquired the diary of Daisy, a Victorian woman with a shocking secret. As Cori reads, it soon becomes apparent that Daisy will stop at nothing to be heard, even outside of the pages of her diary …
Will Simon stick around when life becomes increasingly spooky for Cori, as she moves ever closer to uncovering the truth about Daisy’s connection to the girl in her favourite painting?
You can buy your copy here ~ Amazon UK
Out in eBook
The Girl in the Photograph
What if the past was trying to teach you a lesson?
Staying alone in the shadow of an abandoned manor house in Yorkshire would be madness to some, but art enthusiast Lissy de Luca can’t wait. Lissy has her reasons for seeking isolation, and she wants to study the Staithes Group – an artists’ commune active at the turn of the twentieth century.
Lissy is fascinated by the imposing Sea Scarr Hall – but the deeper she delves, the stranger things get. A lonely figure patrols the cove at night, whilst a hidden painting leads to a chilling realisation. And then there’s the photograph of the girl; so beautiful she could be a mermaid … and so familiar.
As Lissy further immerses herself, she comes to an eerie conclusion: The occupants of Sea Scarr Hall are long gone, but they have a message for her – and they’re going to make sure she gets it.
You can buy your copy here Amazon UK
My Q&A with Kirsty Ferry
Kirsty is from the North East of England and won the English Heritage/Belsay Hall National Creative Writing competition in 2009 with the ghostly tale Enchantment. She has also written North East based novels, short stories and articles for magazines such as Weekly News, Peoples Friend, Ghost Voices and It’s Fate.
Her timeslip novel, Some Veil Did Fall, a paranormal romance set in Whitby, was published by Choc Lit in Autumn 2014. This was followed by another Choc Lit timeslip, The Girl in the Painting in February 2016 and The Girl in the Photograph in March 2017. The experience of signing Some Veil Did Fall in a quirky bookshop in the midst of Goth Weekend in Whitby, dressed as a recently undead person was one of the highlights of her writing career so far!
Kirsty’s day-job involves sharing a Georgian building with an eclectic collection of ghosts – which can sometimes prove rather interesting.
Describe yourself using three words?
Likes chocolate excessively
What inspired you to write your first novel?
My first novel was The Memory of Snow, which is a timeslip set on Hadrian’s Wall. I was inspired by a place called Brocolitia, on the Wall itself. There is a Mithraic Temple there and a collapsed, grassed over fort, and a deep, boggy puddle which is the remains of Coventina’s Well – a sacred well the Romans used to worship at. It’s such a lovely, strange, peaceful place I couldn’t help but want to write about it!
What time of day do you like to write?
I’m best off writing in an afternoon – I’m possibly more productive on an afternoon if I keep myself stoked with coffee and biscuits!
What is your favourite book and why?
Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë. It’s an incredible book with so many different layers to it that I find something new every time I read it. I love the Gothic-ness of it all, and the unearthly passion between Cathy and Heathcliff. Can’t beat a Byronic hero! I wish I could write a Byronic hero so well.
How did you pick the title of your book?
The Girl in the Photograph is the third book in a series, and the title links in really well to the second book, The Girl in the Painting. The first book is called Some Veil Did Fall, which is a line from a Dante Gabriel Rossetti poem; but when I ‘christened’ that book I didn’t really know it would be a trilogy (although I hoped it would be!) or Veil might have had a different title too! The Girl in the Photograph is perfect for this one, as the timeslip, the mystery and the romance is all tied up with photography – be it a beautiful Edwardian woman captured in a photograph, or my lovely photographer heroes trying to win their very own heroines – one lives in the contemporary world, and one is Edwardian!
Are the characters in your book based on real people?
No, but they seem very real to me! (Although I must say Stefano, the contemporary photographer, looks, in my head, very much like Aidan Turner…) Having lived and breathed the characters through three novels, they have come alive and I would very much like to meet them if they did exist in real life.
What’s your favourite word?
I don’t know if I have a favourite word, but I was told last year I use ‘basically’ and ‘actually’ a lot in my speech and in my writing. It’s made me a lot more conscious of what I write, and now the first thing I do is a ‘search’ on the final draft and strip the words away. Actually
If you were a colour what would it be?
My friends would probably say pink. I do have a lot of pink stuff – but I think it comes of being the only female in the house. I never used to be so pink-orientated. I was always more red or green. I think the pink thing is my little rebellion. My son, for example, is less likely to try and write in one of my notebooks if it’s pink…
Do you plan your story beforehand or go with the flow?
Plan – what on earth is planning??! No – I start with a concept and see what happens. Sometimes I have a beginning and an end, but they don’t always stick. It’s an exciting way of writing and it works for me, but lots of authors will tell you they need a rigid plan. I would feel too constricted that way, especially if something suddenly started happening that I realised was better than my ‘plan’ and I had to abandon it.
Ooh it varies, to be honest. Obviously, I love Emily Brontë, but her back catalogue is somewhat limited! I do love Susanna Kearsley, Mary Stewart, Victoria Holt, Kate Morton, Barbara Erskine and Philippa Gregory though. I’ve just read a Mary Balogh book that someone recommended and I thought it was great, so I might explore her a little more as well.
If you could give any literary villain a happy ending who would you chose?
Difficult. I find that when I write I sometimes really like the villains as they are such interesting people to explore. I would have liked Heathcliff and Cathy to get together properly – I felt sorry for him when he overheard her conversation with Nelly Dean and ran away – but they kind of do get together, in the end, I suppose. I also felt a bit sorry for Dracula as he loved Mina in his own way and it’s got to tug on your heartstrings a little bit. I’ve read quite a few fictionalised versions of Thomas Seymour as well, who was Jane Seymour’s brother. He isn’t strictly a literary villain, but I do think he shouldn’t really have had his head chopped off! I feel the same way about Robert Dudley, Queen Elizabeth I’s lover as well. I wish they could have got together properly. He’s always portrayed as awful and I think history is a little unfair to him!
Are you working on a new project?
I’ve been busy with edits for a new novella with Choc Lit, so that’s a priority at the minute, and I started a sequel to that novella but haven’t got very far with it. I’ve got a situation and some characters but they aren’t behaving too well for me and the heroine is simply annoying me, which is no good. I need to put it to one side and let it germinate. No point in forcing it, otherwise I’ll end up hating the whole story and I think readers will be able to tell if that happens.
Your Twitter – @kirsty_ferry
Facebook Author Page – Kirsty Ferry Author https://www.facebook.com/kirsty.ferry.author/
Your Author Website – http://www.rosethornpress.co.uk
WIN A COPY
You can win a copy of The Girl In The Painting.
My thanks to Kirsty Ferry and Choc Lit Books. So lovely to have you here today.