– ‘The Magic of Wor(l)ds’ blog is a hobby, reviews and other bookish stuff on this site are done for free. –
Today I’m on the ‘The Bistro by Watersmeet Bridget’ blogtour, organised by Rachel’s Random Resources.
To promote this book I have a Q&As post, but b
About the Author :
Julie Stock writes contemporary feel-good romance from around the world: novels, novellas and short stories. She published her debut novel, From Here to Nashville, in February 2015 and her second novel, The Vineyard in Alsace in March 2017. Over You (Sam’s Story) and Finding You (Jenna’s Story), her follow-up novellas to From Here to Nashville were published in 2018, making the From Here to You series complete. She has also published a boxed set of the From Here to You trilogy of books. Julie’s next novel, The Bistro by Watersmeet Bridge, will be out in summer 2019. If you’d like to sign up to her newsletter list, you can do so here. As a thank you, you’ll be able to download Before You, the prequel story to the From Here to You series, for free.
You can connect with Julie via her website, on Twitter, via her Facebook Author, and on Instagram. Julie is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and The Society of Authors.
When she is not writing, she works in communications. She is married and lives with her family in Bedfordshire in the UK.
When Olivia goes to manage Finn’s failing bistro, will they end up sharing a table for two, or will it be a recipe for disaster?
Olivia Fuller longs to manage one of the restaurants in her father’s chain and to break free to live the independent life she’s wanted for so long. When her father finally puts his trust in her and sends her to a failing restaurant in Devon, she’s confident she can prove herself capable of doing the job.
Finn Anderson is about to lose his beloved seaside bistro, unless the bank can find a buyer to dig him out. When George Fuller offers Finn a deal, he has no choice but to accept if he wants any chance of getting his bistro back one day. And then the new manager arrives…
Even after meeting the prickly chef and discovering his complete lack of business skills,
Olivia is confident she can turn the struggling business round. But as Olivia and Finn start working together, a mutual attraction develops between them, and soon, nothing is going according to Olivia’s plan.
When there’s a real chance that the bistro might be sold off, Olivia and Finn determine to fight for it, united by their hard work and their growing feelings for each other.
But can they save the bistro and be together, or does destiny have a different path in mind?
A feel-good contemporary romance set in a bistro beside the sea in Devon.
First of all thank you very much for taking the time to answer my questions, I really appreciate it. Here we go! 🙂
Can you, for those who don’t know you already, tell something about yourself and how you became an author?
Thank you so much, Stefanie, for inviting me on to your blog. I’m a contemporary romance author of novels, novellas and short stories. I started writing about 6 years ago when I was in my late forties. I’d often thought about writing a novel but had never been able to come up with an idea that I would be able to sustain over 80/90,000 words. Then one day, an idea came and I sat down and started writing what became my debut novel, From Here to Nashville, and I haven’t looked back since!
Which books did/do you love to read as a child/now as a grown-up?
As a child, I loved reading from a very early age and we would go to the library every week to get a pile of books to read. It was my favourite time of the week! I used to love reading Enid Blyton, first the Magic Faraway Tree books, then the Naughtiest Girl in the School and Malory Towers. I loved them all. Later on, I loved the Anne of Green Gables stories and The Secret Garden.
As a grown up, I love to read romance of all kinds, from contemporary through to historical. I especially like really sad stories though! I love JoJo Moyes’ ‘Me Before You’ and ‘The Time Traveler’s Wife’ by Audrey Niffenegger. I’ve always loved Romeo and Juliet too 🙂 I love a real tearjerker. I find it quite cathartic.
I also love Robert Harris novels and I enjoy a really good thriller.
Is there a writer whose brain you would love to pick for advice? Who would that be and why?
I’ve recently discovered Rosanna Ley’s books and I find them so beautifully written. Rosanna also teaches creative writing but she lives a long way from me so I’ll probably never be able to attend one of her courses. If I could pick her brain for advice about writing craft and how she manages to weave setting into her writing, that would be wonderful.
If you could, which fictional character (from your own book(s) or someone else’s) would you like to invite for tea and why?
I read The Lady of Hay by Barbara Erskine not long ago, which was an absolutely fascinating story set both in modern day and in medieval England. So I’d invite the main character – Jo Clifford/the Lady of Hay who goes between the two periods – because I’d love to know more about what it was like to live in medieval times, but also to be regressed in the way that she was.
Do you have some rituals or habits whilst writing?
Not really. I write on a Mac using Scrivener with my notes next to me on my desk. If I’m struggling to keep going, and not get distracted, I’ll set a timer making myself write for 30 minutes and then take a break, before doing the same thing all over again. I just keep going until I reach my word count for the session. I do usually like to drink a cup of tea while writing.
Where do you come up with your idea(s)? Do people in your life need to be worried? 😉
It’s usually a setting that gives me an idea for writing, but not always. I’m inspired by things I read, TV programmes – fiction and non-fiction, my own life experiences. The list is endless now that I’ve finally started writing.
I do use things from normal life in my writing but I would never write someone I know into a book exactly as they are. I take aspects of lots of people and merge them into a character that way. So no-one needs to be too worried…
Are you a plotter or do you go with the flow, as a pantser?
I started out as a pantser but only because I’d had no experience, really. Then even as I was writing my first book, I knew that I should have done more planning. With each successive book, I have plotted it out more, but I keep things flexible so I can make changes if I want to.
Can you give novice writers some tips (do’s/don’ts)?
One piece of advice I would give is to make time for your writing. Lots of us think that we have no time to write, but with even a small mindset change, we can make time. So for example, when I was writing my first book and finding it hard to find time to write, I started writing in my lunch hour at work. In just half an hour a day, I started writing 300 words and that turned into 10,000 words within the month. That’s a book within 8 or 9 months.
As an indie author, I would advise new writers not to be constrained into thinking that the traditional publishing route is the only path to publication. Self-publishing is a viable option for everyone now and it can be mastered by most people with a little effort.
What are your future plans as an author?
As well as my new novel, The Bistro by Watersmeet Bridge, I have a short story collection coming out this summer (it may even be out by the time your readers read this post!) Then I will be starting work on a new novel in the autumn. I’m not sure whether it will be the second book in a series or a brand new book, but I will be writing.
Last, but not least : Can you give my readers one teaser from your book, which is featured here on my blog, please?
This teaser is from the end of chapter 2 when Olivia has just arrived at the restaurant, and she is trying to find out what went wrong before. Finn is on the defensive but Olivia is determined to get her way.
‘To put it simply, Mr Anderson, I want to know if you can cook, otherwise we’re lost before we’ve even started. I’d like you to make me your signature dish, please.’
‘My signature dish? What the hell do you mean by that?’
‘Surely you’re not telling me you don’t know what a signature dish is? I don’t think you can call yourself a chef if you don’t know that term.’ Her lips twitched as she teased him.
‘I know full well what a signature dish is, and you know that’s not what I meant.’
Olivia raised her eyebrows but said nothing.
Finn went on. ‘I want to know why you’re asking me to cook it. I don’t need your approval, you know.’
‘Not to put too fine a point on it, Mr Anderson, the only way I can find out if you can cook is if you make me something to eat. Then I’ll know whether the reason the restaurant failed is because you can’t cook, or whether it’s down to something else.’
Isn’t that a great reason to pick up this book and to find out more?!
Thanks once again for this lovely interview, Julie Stock.
Win Signed copy of The Bistro by Watersmeet Bridget and goodies (UK Only)
The prize will contain
• Signed paperback,
• Notebook with front cover on
• Postcard magnet with front cover on
• Bookmark with front cover on
• Bag of Devon fudge
*Terms and Conditions – UK entries welcome. Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.
The Magic of Wor(l)ds
P.S. Are you an author (or publisher) who also wants a FREE interview like this? You can always contact me via e-mail!