I was thrilled yesterday when my Facebook friend and author, Shirley Goldencalmly walked into my writing group - The Writers at Lovedean. It was great to meet her in person. I have read and admired Shirley's work but it was very different to hear her read aloud.Shirley GoldenI’ve had around seventy short stories accepted for publication in various places, in print and online, including, 'Dream Catcher' and 'The Yellow Room'. My work has appeared in anthologies, some of which are listed below. Further stories are posted on '1,000WORDS' and 'The View From Here' or can be downloaded to mobile devices from 'Ether Books'. I was delighted to win the Exeter Writers Short Story Competition, 2013.What the Dickens? Magazine Collection - eBook anthology, 2013Blood Ink: Crime Unleashed - Chapter One Promotions, 2012Fear: A Modern Day Anthology of Horror and Terror: Vol 1 - Crooked Cat, 2012Voices of Angels: An Anthology - Bridge House Publishing, 2011Ways of Falling - Earlyworks Press, 2011Can you share the premise of your latest project?I'm currently working on a fantasy novel, which starts when a professor discovers a way of adapting cells to be more resilient to diseases, but in the process, creates vampire-like side effects. It will delve more deeply into vampires and their mythology as the novel progresses but I only have a vague notion of where I'm heading with it at the moment. Also, I always have short stories and flash-fictions on the go. A recent short story I wrote deals with the fears of fatherhood but it is only in its initial drafts.In particular, what led you to write?Ah, voices in my head! Since childhood, I always had a dialogue of sorts running through my mind, creating scenarios and characters.
Is there a key person or group that has inspired you in the process of writing?One person who has been important in terms of helping me to shape my work is a writing tutor. She is a poet and playwright and taught me the value of using economical language.
How do you envision your work will impact your readers?I guess different stories will have different impacts. In general, I hope I'm able to move people, or create tension and fear if that's the aim; ultimately, I hope to entertain in some way.
As you embarked on writing your book, what was the overall message you wanted to convey to your audience?I'm not sure I have an overall message. It's more about taking a character on their journey and seeing how they respond to different scenarios or if they change.
What process did you go through to build the narrative of your book?It often starts with a single idea and then the characters begin to emerge. I'll jot down a rough outline in terms of the story, but I'll begin writing without a definite plan. If the story flows, things happen that I don't necessarily anticipate, which is a great feeling.In every author’s experience, there is often a pivotal event that results in the creative process. Can you describe the pivotal event that led you to write your book ?I don't know about a pivotal event as such because, as I said, the urge to write has always been there. I suppose having more time ultimately led me to complete a novel; before this, I regarded it as a hobby.Are there any tips you can share on what parents can do to foster the love of reading and books?Perhaps rather obvious ones, but to be led by the child's interests in terms of story selection, and I think reading to them from a young age can instil a love of stories.Describe the role books played in your own life.My sanctuary! Where I go to get away from the day-to-day, which is probably why my preferred genres are fantasy/surreal, sci-fi and historical fiction.Website: www.shirleygolden.netAmazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Shirley-Golden/e/B006DXIKX2/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_2Twitter: https://twitter.com/shirl1001