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Friday, 13 May 2016

Author Q&A with Ann Troup

What if everything you knew was a lie…

This house has a past that won’t stay hidden, and it is time for the dead to speak.
Returning to Number 17, Coronation Square, Edie is shocked to find the place she remembers from childhood reeks of mould and decay. After her aunt Dolly’s death Edie must clear out the home on a street known for five vicious murders many years ago, but under the dirt and grime of years of neglect lurk dangerous truths.
For in this dark house there is misery, sin and dark secrets that can no longer stay hidden. The truth must come out.
Finding herself dragged back into the horrific murders of the past, Edie must find out what really happened all those years ago. But as Edie uncovers the history of the family she had all but forgotten, she begins to wonder if sometimes it isn’t best to leave them buried.
From the bestselling author of The Lost Child don’t miss The Silent Girls
An unforgettable and addictive story, perfect for fans of Lesley Thomson, Diane Chamberlain and Tracy Buchanan.

Title:        The Silent Girls
Author:    Ann Troup
Published By: Carina
Date:        Feb 18th 2016
Link:        UK: Amazon 

Author Q&A with Ann Troup

Hi Ann and welcome to Sincerely Book Angels blog.
Thank you so much for having me, I always enjoy a visit to your blog especially as it’s been nearly a year since we ‘met’ over my first book, The Lost Child. I’ve been busy since and my second novel, The Silent Girls was published in February. Hard to believe I’ve produced three books in just over a year! (Just finished writing Book 3, title to be revealed soon…) 

What was the inspiration behind this novel?
The Silent Girls sprang from a ‘what if?’ idea as most of my books do. The story centres around a house, lived in by a lonely, strange woman who was a carer for her brother and mother. When she dies a niece is tasked with the job of clearing the house of its effects and disposing of them. There’s nothing to inherit, there are debts and the house is squalid and neglected. Of course deep dark secrets are revealed as the story unfolds. When I was growing up there was a similar family who lived locally, I was always very nosy about their set up – why would a young woman never leave home and choose to care for her odd brother and abrasive mother? So the story stemmed from that - my nosiness and overactive imagination! I’m fairly sure that the story I’ve written is not the real story of that family but who knows..? 

Did you always want to be a writer?
I’m not sure always wanted to be would be an accurate description, I always have written and harboured vague thoughts of being published for years. I wrote my first play when I was nine and my first novel at fifteen – both were dreadful, but they amused me at the time. It took me a long time to pluck up the courage to put my writing out into the world, but there’s little point in not sharing things with others, so the world is now stuck with me, and my writing! 

What other jobs have you had?
How long have you got? Ha ha. I’m not exactly young so have had quite a few incarnations – I’ve been a waitress, a barmaid, a qualified nurse, an artist, owned my own businesses, been a cleaner, worked as a seamstress, I even had a job making sausages for a short time and one putting washing liquid into laundry balls (remember those?) I’m a bit mercurial and like a challenge. I’ve also worked for the RAF, Women’s Aid, Charities and been a baker. As you can imagine my CV is longer than my novels! 

How did it feel when your first novel was published?
A bit surreal if I’m honest, even with two books out it still hasn’t quite sunk in properly. I still struggle when I meet people and they ask about, or have read the books – I have a tendency to blush a lot, choke up and change the subject. I’m not a limelight lover, I just write stories and now I get paid for it, which is pretty damned cool. 

Have you ever had writer's block? If so how did you overcome it?
Funny you should ask that…I’m currently juggling ideas for Book 4, I wouldn’t call it writers block as such, just too many ideas milling around and no one story shouting to be told. I may have writer’s exhaustion – is that a thing? I do have a habit of writing myself into corners sometimes, as in throwing so many rocks at my characters that it takes some time to work out how I’m going to extract them from tricky situations. On those occasions walking the dog, sitting on the beach near my house and letting the breeze blow away the cobwebs helps. 

What motivates you to keep writing?
Honest answer? Readers. It’s not the money. I’m not famous or rich and probably never will be. It’s the kindness of people who read the books and either leave a review or contact me and say how much they enjoyed the story. Writing is hard work, and when you publish a book you are putting your head above a parapet with the concern that you might be shot down at any minute. So, it’s definitely appreciative readers who keep me going. 

Do your characters moods ever affect your mood and vice versa?
I don’t think so, or not that I’ve noticed. By the time they reach the page my characters are pretty well formed with their own moods and motivations. I always write in third person POV, so that allows me to write about them from a safe distance I think. My family would say I’m moody enough so maybe it’s a good thing. 

What three pieces of advice would you give to an aspiring writer?
It’s a lonely business, so don’t let it take over.

Don’t read too much writing advice, grab the basics, get a handle on the language and develop your own voice and style. There’s no such thing as an original story, it’s just the way you tell ‘em.

Being published isn’t remotely as glamorous as you might think, it can stressful, demanding and sometimes demoralizing (those bad reviews…) be prepared and remember why you started doing it in the first place.         

Which authors inspire you?
All of them! Sounds daft I know, and a year ago I might have listed my favourite authors for you. Anyone who publishes a book, puts the time and effort into it and puts it out into the world is an inspiration. It takes hard work, a good many knocks and a lot of gumption to get a book out there. So, all authors inspire me even though I may never have read their books. 

What are you reading at the moment?
I’m having a bit of light relief and reading A Year of Being Single by Fiona Collins. Very refreshing, very funny, thought provoking and a nice break from serial killers, dead bodies and dark secrets, though I suspect they will creep back in soon.  

What is your next book about?
Book 3 (I wish I could tell you the title!) is about the things people will do for the love of themselves and what they do to other people in the process. It’s a down and dirty story of greed, shame and manipulation. But it does have a rather lovely ending, even if I say so myself. 

And now think about the books you've read and just give the first one that comes into your head for our quickfire 'Which book round.'

Which book has made you: Laugh out loud? A Year Of Being Single.

Cry your heart out? A Man Called Ove.

Want to read it again? A God in Ruins.

Think more? Between You and Me.

Wish it would be made into a film? Mine! Haha.

Shocked? Born Survivors.

Scared? Beloved. 

Thank you so much for joining us on our blog today and good luck with the book.
To read our review of The Lost Child by Ann please click here.

Book Angels x

About the Author

Ann lives in Devon in a small house just a pebble's throw from the beach. She shares her home with her husband and a small white dog, both occasionally allow her to be inattentive to them so that she can write. Her many skills include an unparalleled ability to consume coffee, and the gift of being able to kill houseplants by merely admiring them. In addition to that she is a great proponent of the Miss Havisham method of housekeeping, which includes regarding cobwebs and dust as nature's ornaments. Her first novel The Lost Child was published by Carina UK/Harper Collins on 19/5/2015 her second, The Silent Girls, was published in February 2016.

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