“If you’ve written the book – or even if you’re just thinking about writing the book – it’s never too early to think about who your readers are going to be. I look forward to sharing my publishing journey with you.”
Emma Fraser is a writer of Historical Fiction published by Sphere (an imprint of UK publisher Little, Brown). Her first full length novel, When the Dawn Breaks, was published in 2013 and her second, We Shall Remember, came out in paperback in October 2014. Her third book, as yet untitled, is due to be published by Little, Brown in January 2017 with a fourth in 2018. She was shortlisted twice for RNA’s Epic Novel of the year.
Known for her page turning stories and distinctive blend of history, medicine and romance, Emma has set her stories in locations as diverse as Scotland, Poland and Serbia. She is especially talented at helping The Art of Writing attendees with plot development.
Emma was born in Scotland but brought up in South Africa. After she left school she returned to the birthplace of her parents, in the remote Western Islands of Scotland. She left there to train as a nurse before going on to university to study English literature. After the birth of her first child, she and her doctor husband travelled the world working in rural Africa, Australia and Northern Canada. Emma worked in the health sector until she started writing full time, using much of her first-hand medical experience in her novels. She also blatantly picks her husband’s brain to ensure the medical detail is correct and up to date. If he can’t help, he usually manages to find a colleague who can.
She still loves to travel (particularly to Italy!) and grabs any opportunity to see new countries, and always visits the places she uses in her books to ensure the detail is right . To relax, she enjoys playing tennis, yoga, walking and, of course, reading.
You can follow Emma Fraser on Facebook. Or Twitter @EmmaFraserbooks
Interview with Emma Fraser
On Writing and Reading…
What do you love most about being a writer?
I love telling stories, making the people and situations in my head come alive on paper.
What do you like least about being a writer?
It can be hard work. Your brain is always buzzing and it can be difficult to switch off!
Do you have a favourite locale or setting for your novels? What is it and why is it your favourite?
I like to set my books in places that I have lived or worked and have a strong pull on my emotions. Both my historical novels were partly set in Scotland and the Scottish islands. As an islander myself the islands have a particular hold on my heart.
What are your five all-time favourite books (with authors)?
Pride & Prejudice- Jane Austen- in fact everything by her. Bleak House- Charles Dickens. Heart of Darkness- Joseph Conrad.
What advice would you give a would-be writer trying to kick-start a career?
Don’t try and copy someone else’s style. Find your own voice and once you have – trust it. Write without stopping to edit – I believe the creative part of the brain is different to the part you use for editing. Too much self editing in the beginning can bring you to a crashing halt.
But when you have finished your first draft, be prepared to edit, edit and edit some more.
Oh and if you can, join a writer’s group. Great for boosting your confidence when starting out.