Author: Clare Griffin
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
1. Tell us a little about Tumble…
Tumble is a young adult contemporary novel that follows Emma on her last year of high school. Emma has always known what she wants to do with her life, become a professional dancer like her mum, and she’s of the opinion that nothing will get in her way. Of course, that’s not the case! Her long time crush Daniel finally notices her, she starts teaching dance to gymnasts and circus students where she meets Riley, an arrogant (but very cute!) guy who is always in the right place at the right time and then one bad decision changes hers, and those around her lives forever. The book is about friendships, stereotypes, finding out who you are, first love and what comes after that fork in the road.
2. What do you think is the most important part in creating characters?
Personality and ensuring that the reader likes your main character. I haven’t finished books because I’ve disliked the main character and didn’t care what happened to them, so it’s very important to give characters good and bad traits, but get that balance of making them likeable.
3. Do you have any advice for aspiring authors?
READ, READ, READ. And write as much as you can. Read what you like and write what you want to read. Don’t try and write the latest fad but rather write what you would want to read because chances are other people want to read it too. Reading is so important as well and I find I write better if I’m constantly reading. If I’m reading a book I can’t put down it inspires me to write something hopefully just as good!
Also if possible join a writers group or your local institution like Writers Victoria. From my experience fellow readers and writers have been invaluable to my book. From critiquing it to courses, the feedback has been fantastic. It’s scary putting your work out there but well worth it. Also, be active on social media. I’ve found out a lot of industry contacts and competitions (not to mention great people!) through Twitter and Instagram.
4. What books/authors have influenced your writing?
So many! I love writers from Jane Austen and Oscar Wilde to JK Rowling, Melina Marchetta, Gabrielle Tozer, Sarah Ayoub, Sophie Davis, Jessica Shirvington, Kate Morton and Hannah Kent. I’m very excited about Hannah’s next book as Burial Rites was so beautifully written.
5. Do you ever experience writers block?
Yes! I’m always fascinated by writers who say they don’t get writers block. I’ll either stop and go for a walk or do something else and my brain must keep working on it because randomly it will come to me or I move on to another scene, and go back to that part I’m stuck on. I have a 5 month old baby now though so I may not have the luxury of doing that on my next book.
6. What is your favourite theme to write about?
Good question! Going from what I’ve written so far I’d say discovering what happens when you don’t get what you want or what you think you need and trying to figure out what to do next. That question of “what the hell do I do now?”
7. What do you like to do when you aren’t writing?
Read, watch movies, spend time with my family and our greyhound and catch up with friends. And eat. I love food. Not very good at making it but very good at eating it.
8. Do you have any book recommendations for the readers of Words Read & Written?
There are so many great books out at the moment, especially for YA. I’ve just finished Carolyn Gilpin’s book Facing Up which I could not put down and Sarah Ayoub’s latest The Yearbook Committee was great as well. Not YA, was Sally Hepworth’s The Secrets of Midwives which was great but I’m glad I didn’t read it while I was pregnant! If you haven’t read Liane Moriarty’s Big Little Lies yet you must! I could not put that book down and it kept me guessing. And Me Before You by JoJo Moyes, it is one of my all time favourite books. It will make you cry though, you’ve been warned.