Today on 10 Questions with… we have Emily Hussey, Australian romance author of the Red Centre Series which is set in the centre of Australia. Find out what she’s currently working on, her favourite reads and the actors she’d like to see play the roles of her main characters.
What’s the best book you’ve read recently?
The best book always tends to be the last book, as that is still freshly in my mind. One that kept me enthralled however was Dark Matter, by Blake Crouch. It’s a scifi story and not what I usually read, but was definitely five stars. In the romance genre, From Paris to Forever by Savannah Blaize was a great read.
Are you working on anything new?
I have just published Trust Your Heart, which is the second book in the Red Centre Series. I have received the third book back from the editor and have yet to start working through the edits. I also published Clear As A Bell as a component story in a Christmas boxset. That was published in cooperation with five other writer friends and it is currently doing very well in the US market.
Maison Angelique is a standalone manuscript that I have just finished and am looking for a traditional publisher for that story. Hopefully, it is picked up but otherwise I will indie publish. I have several other stories in plot format, and just need to dedicate the time required to bring them to life. They are contemporary stories rather than romance.
I have just committed to another box set contribution, so I think that 2019 will be just as busy as 2018 has been.
What is your favourite childhood book?
I don’t recall a specific book, but I used to religiously listen to the Argonauts on the ABC radio. Each year I would get the year book for Christmas. I loved them. Otherwise, I was always looking for stories of kids having adventures – like Pippi Longstocking.
Do you listen to music when you write? If so, what do you listen to?
I very rarely listen to music. I tend to get engrossed in my work and realise some time later that the album has finished. I live in an apartment in the middle of CBD Melbourne, so when I write in the evenings, the television is often on as background noise, even though I am rarely paying attention to it.
When did you start writing?
I don’t remember not writing, although it has only been since 2013 that I’ve picked up the pen in earnest. Before that, I wrote short stories and poetry, some of which was published. In 1988, I wrote the first three chapters of a manuscript, and outlined the remainder of the story. I sent it off to Mills and Boon. I was rejected with a very nice letter, which said I had not focused enough on the protagonist and antagonist, and needed to reduce the role of the secondary characters. I put the story away, and pulled it out again in 2013.
That story was subsequently published as The Red Heart. I left it set in the late eighties, because otherwise I had to rewrite much of the technical detail in the book, with an impact on the story line.
What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
I’m a compulsive reader, so if I’m not writing, I’m either reading or looking for something to read. I love the weekend papers, and on Saturday mornings take myself out for breakfast to a café that has all the papers. I belong to a book club, so there is always a compulsory monthly read, but I also buy the new releases from other members of my writing guild, plus books on the craft of writing.
Do you edit as you write or wait until the first draft is finished?
I undertake mild editing as I write, picking myself up on those filler words that creep in but don’t add anything to the story. I also pick up repetition and inconsistencies. My first serious edit takes place after the last full stop. I tackle it chapter by chapter, and like to print out a hard copy and review that with my red pen. Later, I will do online edits.
Do you have a favourite writing space? If so, where is it?
I will write anywhere – I make sure to have a notebook with me at all times so that when that inspirational line of dialogue occurs to me, or when I’m in the waiting room at the doctor’s surgery, or whatever, I can write. I will sometimes write in cafés but mostly I’m seated at my desktop. I like having my working areas at the right height, having my dual screens, and having access to all files and reference material.
Having said that, a writing retreat and change of scenery can work wonders for the creativity.
Do you struggle to come up with book titles?
I agonise over book titles. They are so important from a marketing perspective, but aren’t always easy to come up with. I make long lists of prospective titles and then workshop them with myself until I narrow the list down to the one that ends up on the cover. Having said that, I knew the title of The Red Heart from the first chapter.
If your book was made into a move, who would play the hero and heroine?
Trust Your Heart is an Australian story, set in the centre of Australia. The heroine is white, but on reflection, she would easily have been a woman of aboriginal descent. In that case, there are some great aboriginal actors who could play the part. Jessica Mauboy would have the right cheeky grin. The lead male part would be taken by Chris Hemsworth.
Trust Your Heart Book 2 in the Red Centre Series
I feel like I found an extra present under the tree this holiday season – 5 star Goodreads review.
Secrecy gives rise to more problems than it hides.
With her own brand of humour and irreverence, Sarah dances through the lives of more than one man in Alice Springs.
When a wedding reception is in wind-down mode, she wraps up an evening of champagne-fuelled revelry by dancing on the table. Falling off into the arms of a new acquaintance has unintended consequences. Sarah believes that for her, relationships are a dangerous thing. When her fiancé died, wasn’t that the ultimate betrayal? Happiness is not to be trusted, and the enigmatic stranger puts that theory to the test.
Joel Pemberton has arrived in town as the new radio station manager. This fascinating man stirs the emotions, but is tight-lipped about his private life. It causes some to question what he’s concealing. Can Sarah whip him into shape, as she does a team of other men in her life?
As their attraction to each other evolves, Sarah is increasingly perturbed about his secretive behaviour. What is Joel hiding? She might not have the opportunity to find out. When Joel’s car is trapped by floodwaters, Sarah and those watching helplessly from the riverbank know he has little chance of survival.
Trust Your Heart is available at Amazon
Currently working and living in Melbourne, Dorothy Shorne has had a varied career. She built modular houses in Central Australia, opened various businesses, and was involved in the development of Sydney Airport.
A solo mother by choice before Hollywood decided it made a good story line, earlier time and resources were focused on bringing up her son. Now she can turn thoughts to other interests, writing being the foremost.
She was a marriage celebrant for 24 years, and has married couples in many different locations, ranging from private gardens, to beaches to caves or rural locations. Many of her clients remain friends to this day.
She is a published romance writer, and loves the short story format in a range of genres. She was shortlisted in the 2018 Scarlet Stiletto Award, run by Sisters in Crime.
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