This week on Ask the Author I'm bringing you Jenny Thomson, author of the Crime Files series. When I first stumbled upon her novel Hell to Pay I immediately knew I had to interview her, and luckily, she agreed.
Here is her book and her As:
Hell to Pay by Jenny Thomson
Published: April 28th 2015 by Limitless Publishing LLC
Pages: 144 Pages (Paperback)
Series: Yes, #1 in the Crime Files Series
Nancy Kerr refuses to be a victim - even when she walks in on her parents killers and is raped and left for dead.
Fourteen months later, she wakes up in a psychiatric hospital with no knowledge of how she got there.
Slowly her memory starts to return.
Released from the institution, she has just one thing on her mind.
Two men brought hell to her family home.
Now they re in for some hell of their own. (goodreads.com)
Interview with Jenny Thompson
1 – Describe Hell to Pay with a haiku.
She wakes up in hospital
Slowly, her memory returns
Now she wants revenge
2 – In a genre like mystery/thriller, how hard is it to stand out? And in what way do you think does Hell to Pay stand out and offer something that should make people want to read it even more?
There are so many good books out there that it is hard to stand out. Where I think Hell to Pay is different is that it has a strong female character we don't often see in mystery thrillers. Too often women are cardboard cut out victims. In Hell to Pay, Nancy is angry and I think that anger is in a lot of women. The only difference is Nancy acts on it. I call my fiction Die Hard for Girls as it features tough women. Books 2 and 3 in the Crime Files series, Throwaways and Don't Come For Me, featuring Nancy are also out.
3 – What was the most challenging about writing Hell to Pay and which scene was the most fun to write?
The most challenging thing was when Nancy had to get information out of one of the men who attacked her as and killed her parents. I kept on asking myself - is this too much?
My favourite scene to write was one of the final ones in the book where a character you least suspect kills someone. I honestly didn't see it coming, but it was as if this character took over. Afterwards, I thought "Wow, I never saw that coming."
4 – What do you like most and least about your main character, Nancy?
I like that Nancy is a fighter. She doesn't let anyone walk over her and I understand her desire to get revenge. In all of my books so far, I've had strong women characters.
The only thing I don't like is she can be reckless and put herself in danger, but that’s a very Scottish thing.
5 - How long did it take you from first idea until publishing deal?
Hell to Pay was published before in 2013 by a very bad publisher. I published it myself and it did well, then I decided to try Limitless Publishing because of their fantastic covers.
6 - How nervous were you when the first reviews started to roll in?
Very nervous. As a writer, you put work out there not knowing if it's any good. So far, I've had a good response.
7 – What do you think about the cover? Is it anything like you imagined it being?
The cover is fantastic. The woman on the cover is exactly how I expected my main character Nancy Kerr to look, right down to her red hair and defiant attitude.
8 – TV Shows: The Walking Dead or Game of Thrones?
The Walking Dead. I'm obsessed with zombies and wrote a zombie novel set in Scotland called The Restless Dead. It’s unusual in that it’s told from a woman, Emma's perspective. Most zombie books are told from a man's.
9 – What advice could you give aspiring authors?
Keep on writing and never give up. Write as much as you can, as many different types of writing that you can. I started off as a journalist, but was always writing stories.
They also tell you to write what you know. Unless its nonfiction where you need to be an expert, I'd say write the book you want to write. I always write the kind of books I'd read myself.
Also, subscribe to a writing magazine that lists markets and publishers who want material. Keep an eye out for competitions.
Always have a notebook, phone or tablet to write ideas down on. Don't be the madwoman like me who goes out to dinner and scribbles on napkins!
10 – If you were forced to participate in The Hunger Games, as female from District 12, what would be your strategy? Fight or flight?
Definitely fight. As a zombie fan, I know how to use different weapons to survive.
Jenny Thomson is an award winning crime writer and features writer who has been widely published in the UK and abroad. She’s a staunch advocate of girl power and that’s why she came up with the idea for the Crime Files series featuring tough Nancy Kerr.
She lives on a beautiful Scottish island with her rescue dog and her partner and is the author of seven other books, all with traditional publishers (including some as Jennifer Thomson).
When she’s not writing about kick ass woman, she’s planning how to survive a zombie apocalypse and writing on napkins because she’s run out of paper.