When successful business-owner Kate Shaw realises she is pregnant, after a fling with a previous lover, she has life-changing decisions to make. She needs to be in control of her life. Pregnancy in her fifties was never part of the plan. It becomes her secret.
The risks of having a baby at her age are clear but she struggles with the idea of an abortion. No-one understands her increasingly erratic behaviour as the preoccupation takes over her life.
Her marriage is precarious; the relationship with her former lover uncertain.
Is this the way to madness?
1.Did or do you like to read comic books/grapic novels? Which ones?
I don’t read comic books now – I’m not a Manga fan – but loved them as a child. In particular, I devoured the Beano and Dandy – my mother disapproved of them which made them even more attractive. I’m not sure why they were considered bad for me – she did allow me to read the ‘Girl’ comic (which was pretty staid). So I always enjoyed rainy days at junior school when we were kept inside at break time. There was a huge pile of Beanos and Dandys we could help ourselves to!
- Whom did you inherit your love for books/reading from?
My parents were not great readers but I went to a good school where we learned to love reading and literature. I remember an inspirational English teacher saying to us, ‘Read anything and everything. Good taste will come later’. So I think I have her to thank for my love of books.
- When you need a murder victim or someone you can diagnose with a serious disease or someone who is involved in a fatal accident do you sometimes picture someone nasty you have met in real life and think ‘got you’ LOL?
I love this question! Sadly, I can’t delight you with some grisly tale. But I’ll bear it in mind for the future!
- How do you come up with the names for your characters?
This is hard to answer as I don’t really know. I don’t always have a name immediately but something that fits usually comes into my head as I write. I always avoid names that are similar to each other and can be confused. If I have an eccentric character, I try to find an unusual, apt name. For example, the wacky academic in my first novel is called Minerva Jack.
- Do write other things beside books (and shoppinglists 😉 )?
Yes, I write quite a range of material. I’ve had a number of non-fiction articles published, many in our local county magazine Berkshire Life (sadly, it’s just closed – a pandemic victim). Travel writing and creative non-fiction are also types of writing I enjoy. I write short stories and particularly enjoy Flash Fiction. I was recently short-listed in a Cranked Anvil Flash Fiction competition. I write (very) occasional poetry and have had several limericks published in Little Ms (the online arm of Mslexia). I have a blog: www.linimeant.wordpress.com which showcases a range of my writing.
- If your movie or series would be made from your books, would you be happy with the ‘based on’ version or would you rather like they showed it exactly the way you created it?
I think I would go with the ‘based on’ version. I haven’t written either of my novels for a movie or series and I’m sure they would need adapting for either of these media. I would, of course, like to be involved but I would be open to changes – and improvements.
- Who would you like/have liked to interview?
Wow! Where to start? Rather than going for an ‘obvious’ candidate, I think I’ll chose Ian Hislop. Although he is a writer, he’s better known as a journalist, TV panellist and editor of Private Eye. I love his humour and his disregard for convention. He’s amusing and I think I would enjoy his company and his interesting views. I doubt I would find out anything in an interview that isn’t already known, but it would be fun.
- Do you have certain people you contact while doing research to pick their brains? What are they specialized in?
For this, my second book, ‘A Prescription for Madness’, I dealt with the subject of Down’s Syndrome. I had to be sure I had all my facts correct both regarding the risks of Down’s Syndrome occurring and the range of severity of the disease. I consulted my son who is a consultant neonatologist so knows a lot about the newborn and the risks of pregnancy. He was enormously helpful in the early stages and read the final draft of the book to check I’d not got anything wrong.
For the technical info on drugs in my first book, ‘A Taste of His Own Medicine’, (and for the second book, too, for that matter,) I was fortunate to have my own knowledge and suitable books and resources as I was a pharmacist.
- Is there someone you sometimes discuss a dilemma with?
This is normally my husband (unless a purely technical matter). He is amazingly patient and a kindly (but accurate) critic.
- What is more important to you : a rating in stars with no comments or a reviewer who explains what the comments they give are based on (without spoilers of course)
I would always go for a reviewer who explains why they have given a particular rating – whether it is good or not. This type of review is helpful and I can learn from it. A star rating without comments is not always believed – whatever it is. Reviews are for the author but also for potential readers so they need to understand what a rating is based on.
Thanks so much for interviewing me – it’s much appreciated.
Thank you, Linda Fawke and Rachel’s Random Resources
About the author
Linda Fawke is an arts person who studied science but always wanted to write. Now retired, she indulges this passion, writing fiction and non-fiction, even occasional poetry, preferably late at night. She has now written two novels, ‘A Taste of his own Medicine’ and its sequel, ‘A Prescription for Madness’ using her background in pharmacy as the setting of both. These are easy books to read, suitable for Book Club discussions. ‘ A Prescription for Madness’ is more serious than the first book, dealing with such issues as pregnancy in later life and Down’s Syndrome.
She has been a winner of the Daily Telegraph ‘Just Back’ travel-writing competition and has published in various magazines including ‘Mslexia’, ‘Litro’ online, ‘Scribble’, ‘The Oldie’, ‘Berkshire Life’ and ‘Living France’. She was a finalist in the ‘Hysteria’ short story competition.
Linda blogs at http://www.linimeant.wordpress.com where her ‘Random Writings’ include a range of topics from travel to ‘Things that pop into my head’.
Facebook: Linda Fawke