Today I’m very pleased to welcome Tamsyn Murray, author of My So-Called Afterlife!
Hi and thanks for taking the time to answer some questions. Firstly, tell us about Tamsyn Murray!
Where to start? I’m a London based writer with my head in the clouds most of the time. I have one daughter, one husband, a cat, a dog and four rabbits. When I’m not working (supporting schools with IT) or writing, I’m generally found messing about on stage with a local amdram company. Oh, and I can lick my own elbow.
Your book, My So-Called Afterlife, has just been published, can you tell us more about it and the inspiration behind it.
Lucy is a kick-ass fifteen year old ghost stuck haunting the public toilets on Carnaby Street. The book covers the often funny story of how she comes to terms with being dead and finds out that the afterlife isn’t so bad after all.
The story grew from the first line of the book. I was really lucky because Lucy popped into my head fully formed and demanded I tell her tale. The first draft was done in around six weeks but it took longer to polish it into the finished book.
I thought the idea of trapping Lucy’s ghost in the men’s toilets was brilliant! How on earth did you come up with that?
I started wondering what would happen if the building a ghost haunted got knocked down and something grim built on top – like a men’s toilet. Seconds later, I had the first line and the rest soon followed.
Are any of the characters based on real people?
No, although my daughter was inspirational for the teen characters and I once met a grumpy tattooist who gave me the idea for Micky Snake!
If My So-Called Afterlife was going to hit the big screen, which actors/actress’s do you see playing Lucy, Jeremy, Hep and Ryan?
Great question! I don’t know who would play Lucy, I think maybe an unknown young actress would be good for her and probably the same for Hep? But Jeremy is easy – I’d love David Tennant to play him! And I think the Ryan in my head is a dead ringer for Lloyd Daniels, from the 2008 X Factor series, although I wrote the book before I saw Lloyd. And he’s got a lovely singing voice, too, which is a bonus 🙂
You have another book coming out soon for younger readers, can you tell us a bit more about that?
It’s called Stunt Bunny: Showbiz Sensation and is the first in a series published by Simon and Schuster. It concerns the adventures of a feisty young rabbit called Harriet Houdini and although it’s totally different to My So-Called Afterlife, the two books are inextricably linked. The idea for Stunt Bunny arrived in my head the night I was due to finish My So-Called Afterlife, when one of my rabbits escaped and I spent hours trying to tempt her back into her hutch. So as soon as I finished one story, I started on another.
And My So-Called Haunting?
My So-Called Haunting is the follow up to My So-Called Afterlife and has some of the same characters and places. The main character is Skye Thackery, a fourteen year old psychic struggling to settle into a new school and life with her aunt. Soon she’s up to her eyeballs in problems, from fighting her attraction to the gorgeously mysterious Nico Albescu to helping troubled ghost Dontay Ambrose. Throw in the meddling ghost of a sixteenth century witch and Skye almost has more than she can handle. My So-Called Haunting is out in September 2010.
Can you tell us about your route to being a published author and any advice for aspiring writers?
I was very lucky – I found an agent who loved my work very quickly and she paired me with the right publishers so my route to publication has been super-fast That doesn’t mean it was rejection free, though; I had plenty of ‘No thanks,’ before I signed my first contract. My advice would be to hang in there and listen to any constructive criticism you get. All it takes is one ‘Yes,’ from the right person and all the rejections melt away 🙂
Finally, what next for Tamsyn Murray?
Harriet Houdini’s adventures continue because there’s another Stunt Bunny book due out in the autumn and I’ve just started work on the next Afterlife book. I love the start of a new project, where you’re gathering together plot lines and getting to know your characters. I think there are some very exciting times ahead for mine!
Thanks Tamsyn…loving the idea of David Tenant as Jeremy! My So-Called Afterlife is out now, with Stunt Bunny due for release in May and My So-Called Haunting out in September this year. You can visit Tamsyn’s website here
Your Chance To Win!
I have one signed copy of My So-Called Afterlife by Tamsyn Murray to giveaway (thanks Tamsyn) You can read my review here
To enter, all you need to do is leave a comment here. You don’t need to be a follower and this contest is International!
Entries close at midnight on Sunday 14th March and the winner will be chosen using Random.org. I will announce the winner on Monday 15th on Twitter, here and by email (if you don’t want to leave it here, you can message me with your email at Rhiana-Reads@live.com Remember to include your name!). You will have 48 hours to send me your postal details before another winner is drawn.
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