Author Q&A: Elle Field

Today on Becca's Books, I'm delighted to be welcoming the wonderful Elle Field to the blog for an author Q&A.


 First of all, could you introduce yourself to readers? Tell us a little bit about you and the books that you write.
Hi, Becca! Thanks for having me. I'm Elle, I'm thirty-one years old, and I'm the author of the Arielle Lockley romcom series and Geli Voyante's Hot or Not. I live in central London with my boyfriend and cat. I'm a bit of a foodie, and I love reading and exploring new places.

In which genre/genres do you write?
I write chick lit/romcom books. It seems that a lot people really dont like the connotations of chick
lit, but I think this rule should be applied: You should never judge a book by its genre!

Tell us about your most recent book, and where can we find it?
B-Side is my most recent book, and can be bought on Amazon in Kindle and paperback formats: http://www.amazon.co.uk/B-Side-Arielle-Lockley-Book-2-5-ebook/dp/B01E8YYFFY

B-Side is a spin-off book in the Arielle Lockley series, and it tells the events of Lost from the perspective of Etta. Etta has an amazing voice and a real passion for jazz, but she hasnt made her musical dream come true... yet. 
When Etta gets the chance to record a demo with a top producer, this coincides with her godmother's health rapidly deteriorating, and she tries to blot out her sadness by turning to drugs... B-Side is definitely grittier than the previous two books in the series and, don't worry, Arielle is in the book, too!

Are there any particular themes which you try to incorporate within your books?
My books are more than just boy meets girl, they fall in love after a bit of drama and live happily ever after. I like to tackle real-life issues as well, and I've explored drug addiction, the hardship of a loved one having Alzheimer's, career struggles, STIs and finding out who you are as a person.

How do you hope to make readers feel while reading your books?
Happy because they are reading a good book, but I also hope they have an entertaining read and that they enjoy the rollercoaster.

If you had to choose three words to describe your most recent book, what would they be?
Gritty. Passionate. Addictive.

When it comes to creating your characters, are they completely fictional or do you gather ideas from the people you know in real life?
I don't intentionally base my characters on people I know, but there might be a trait here and there that I've accidentally borrowed. A few people have remarked on similarities I share with some of my characters... I think it's inevitable that a few of your own experiences/quirks might, accidentally, make their way into your characters/books!

How do you choose the settings of your books?
I choose settings I know well - favourite places, for example, or where my family live - and also settings that I'd love to visit. I'm always careful not to base a book completely in London because books can often be very London-centric. When I lived in Leeds, I hated reading about London all the time! (It's one of the reasons why The Chocolate Run by Dorothy Koomson is one of my favourite books.)

Have you visited any of the areas which you’ve written about?
I live in London, so that's an easy one to explore when it comes to book research, and I know the New Forest area well, which is featured in the Arielle Lockley series - I have family who live there. But, despite half of Geli Voyante's Hot or Not being set in Durban, I've never visited South Africa. With Google you don't necessarily have to go on research trips; if I do have time though, I like to experience an area first-hand before I use it as a setting.

Who are some of your favourite authors?
I love Bill Bryson, Dorothy Koomson, Paige Toon and Meg Cabot - to name a few!

Do you like to plan strategically, or do you let the characters lead the way?
A bit of both! I tend to write a one-line description of the next five or so chapters I'm working on, but then the characters always take over and I have to revise my plan.

If you could sit down and have lunch with any author, who would you choose and why?
I'd have lunch with Sarah J. Maas so I can get the scoop on the next Throne of Glass book!

Is there a particular part of the writing process which you enjoy more than others?
Editing! Most of the time writing the first draft is so arduous for me (though not always; I wrote the first draft for Geli Voyante's Hot or Not in a ridiculous 20 days), so I much prefer tinkering with my manuscript in the editing process to get it to where it needs to be. I often find writing the first draft to be very painful.

When it comes to the cover of a book, how important do you feel they are?
We're told to never judge a book by a cover, but people still do. I think a cover needs to be eye-catching or quirky to get someone's initial attention if they are randomly browsing - after that, the blurb and reviews are what are important.

How do you keep track of your writing progress? Do you use daily word goals? Do you aim to get a set number of chapters written?
In an ideal world I'd love to write a specific amount of words each day, but it never seems to work out if I set a daily goal. I usually start off slow, writing a chapter or two a day; when the end is in sight, my progress increases dramatically and I start writing a lot more.

Tell us the top three books you’ve read so far in 2016.
The Queen's Poisoner by Jeff Wheeler, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith and An Astronaut's Guide to Life on Earth by Chris Hadfield. Because I've been writing pretty much non-stop all year, I've not had chance to read many books in my genre. (I don't like reading my genre when I'm writing it.)

When did your love of writing first begin to blossom?
Like most authors, it seems, I've scribbled down stories, ever since I was a child. Writing books is what I always wanted to do.

How did you celebrate your most recent publication day?
By toasting the book with a glass - OK, three glasses - of champagne!

What are your thoughts on the book-blogging community?
I love the book blogging community so much. Each time I get ready to release a new book I, rather sillily, get scared that no one will want to reveal the cover or review the book, but book bloggers are the most lovely and supportive people out there. They are the best, and they are so important to the publishing world. Book bloggers are who we all seem to turn to when we want a new book to read.

Which, if any, other genre would you like to try and write in?
I'm actually dabbling with a Young Adult dystopian novel at the moment, and I've also written the first few chapters of a crime thriller set in 1920s New York... With these, and all my chicklit ideas, I need to be cloned to get all these books out there!

What has been your biggest accomplishment so far in your writing career?
I made it to #1 on Amazon.com with Kept it was amazing to be a #1 best seller, even if it was just for a few days!

Are you working on anything at the moment? If so, tell us a little bit about it.
Im currently editing the final book in the Arielle Lockley series, Found, which will be out in August. It can be pre-ordered here: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Found-Arielle-Lockley-Book-3-ebook/dp/B01FG38NKE

What was the best piece of advice you ever received?
Make the most of every opportunity you get. You might not get another.

What do you class as a successful writing day?
A day when I've actually managed to write some words! I am trying to be better, but I still procrastinate dreadfully at times.

Writing in an apartment in New York City or writing in a cottage in the English countryside? 
Ooh, a cottage in the English countryside. New York City would be far too distracting!

Writing with a cup of tea or writing with a cup of coffee? 
Tea, please! A milky breakfast tea or a lemon and ginger tea works for me.

Writing with a sandwich or writing with a cupcake? 
Cupcake, always! I hate sandwiches, unless they are of the fish finger or bacon variety.

Writing with music or writing in silence? 
Silence, though I like to listen to music when I take a break from writing.

Writing outside in the sunshine or writing inside as the snow falls? 
Inside as the snow falls - the sunshine is too distracting (and I can never see my screen outside anyway).

And lastly, if someone told you that they wanted to be a writer, what would you tell them?
Never give up. It might take you ten months to publish your novel, or it might take  you ten years... if you give up though, you will never see your book published.

Author Bio
Elle Field writes romantic comedies, and is the author of the Arielle Lockley series and Geli Voyante's Hot or Not. She grew up in Yorkshire, then moved to Scotland to study International Relations and Social Anthropology at the University of St Andrews. Elle now lives in London with her boyfriend and their cat. She's a massive fan of sunshine, giraffes, The Killers, Audrey Hepburn movies, playing Scrabble and tea. Oh, and reading, of course!

You can find Elle Field on Facebook | Twitter | ellefield.co.uk
You can buy Elle's books here.







1 comment :

  1. Thank you so much for having me on your blog today! xx

    ReplyDelete