Georgina Troy lives in Jersey, an island fifteen miles off the coast of France, and she’s a hopeless romantic. Jersey has so much scope for stories, with beautiful wind-swept beaches and intriguing inhabitants, and when Georgina realised that no one else wrote romances set there, she decided she had to provide some. Her books are published by Accent Press.
She was a finalist in this year’s Romantic Novelists’ Association Joan Hessayon Award with book 1 in her Jersey Scene Series: A Jersey Kiss. Books 2 and 3, A Jersey Affair and A Jersey Dreamboat, are both out now
1.What got you into writing / what made you sit down and actually start something? I was given a typewriter by Father Christmas/Santa Clause when I was seven. It wasn’t one of those pretty plastic pink ones, but an ugly looking thing. However, I couldn’t help wanting to play with it and wrote my first fiction soon after, which was about a page and a half of some long forgotten story, probably about a pony.
2.What is a usual writing day like for you, how is it structured? I work part time, so I get up at about 6.15am, feed my three dogs and then catch up on emails, Facebook, Twitter and blog posts, then I leave for work. When I get home in the afternoon I walk the dogs at one of the nearby beaches and then sit down to continue with the book I’m writing/editing until about 9pm.
3.Do you get writers block? If so, how do you overcome it? I think writers’ block is probably different to everyone. For some it’s not being able to think of what to write next, for others it’s displacement activity when you write yourself into a hole and can’t think where to take the story. For me it tends to be at the beginning of a book when I’ve had an idea, plot it out and begin writing. Panic sets in and I ‘know’ I’m not going to be able to produce the book I’d imagined. Then I eat chocolate and press on. So I suppose to me it’s bouts of a lacking of confidence. I just sit down and write and eventually the story pulls together and I get back into it again.
4.Are you a plotter or panster when it comes to writing a story? I used to be a panster but now I write an outline to give me some idea of where my characters and plotlines are going and then when I’m happy-ish with the plot I become a bit of a panster.
5.Are you traditionally or self-published, and what was the publishing process like for you? Any advice to aspiring authors? I originally self-published the first two books in my series, A Jersey Kiss and A Jersey Affair, but then I was taken on by Accent Press last August – a huge dream come true for me – and was contracted to write two new books for them. They relaunched the first two books and the third book, A Jersey Dreamboat, was published on 4 September this year.
My advice for authors wishing to self-publish would be to edit the book as thoroughly as possible, employing a professional editor if you can. Make sure your cover is professional looking and that you have a good online presence with a website/blog/Facebook and Twitter. I’m now on Pinterest too.
6.What has been your highlight since becoming a published author? Feeling like I’m an ‘actual writer’ rather than just dreaming about being one. Seeing my books in our local Waterstones and them reaching numbers 3 and 7 simultaneously in the Top Ten Book chart.
7.Can you share a little of your most recent book with us? And any other books of yours, if you wish. The books in my Jersey Scene series are all based in Jersey, and apart from A Jersey Kiss, which is solely based on the island, the others also feature, another place. A Jersey Affair visits Sorrento, A Jersey Dreamboat the South of France and A Jersey Bombshell Vietnam. The books are stand-alone so don’t need to be read in order, however the main protagonists for each book pop up in the later books in the series, so that readers can see what happens to them after the book has finished.
The most recent book, A Jersey Dreamboat is about two friends who run an event planning business. They’re let down by a local socialite and when they’re attend a birthday party and are invited on a cruise with eight other French people. They accept, not realising that this decision will change both their lives in ways they couldn’t imagine.
8.What audience is your book targeted for, and what genre does it come under? The books are romance and come under the chick lit genre. They’re targeted at women but I’ve been told by a few men that they’ve also enjoyed reading them, which was great to hear.
9.Apart from writing, what do you do in your spare time? I read a lot and go for long walks on the nearby beaches with my dogs, I find that very inspiring and helpful when sorting out a plot hold.
10.What tip would you give to new authors when trying to build a fan-base / get followers and market their books? (What to do and what not to do.) You need a Facebook page and Twitter account, I also have a blog that doesn’t receive many comments but does get a lot of visits each time I publish a new post. Writers are incredibly supportive people and my writer friends are always re-tweeting my tweets and sometimes sharing my Facebook status. If you want to promote your book on Facebook or Twitter then you’ll also need to include updates of other interesting things and Tweets. Supporting your writer friends by sharing their news and chatting to people will also increase your followers and help you get to know many people. It’s great fun. It can be quite difficult to get the balance right.
11.How long on average does it take you to write a book? It usually takes me a couple of months thinking about the book, naming the characters, storyline, plot twists, etc, then about 4-5 months to write it. I then send it out to three beta readers and then edit it again and then send it to my editor and that’s when the real edits begin.
Thank you very much for inviting me on to your fabulous site for this chat, Georgina.