‘I first had the idea of becoming a writer about ten years ago. I’ve always loved reading and have a vivid imagination. I tried at the time to write a book, but the genre I chose was crime based and despite my knowledge of law enforcement, gained from a short-lived career in the Police force, the story never flowed. My writing dream then took a back burner, while I concentrated on a new career in the air as Cabin Crew.’
Where do you get your information or ideas for your books?
‘Although I live in the U.K, I love America and travel there a lot with work and on holidays. I wanted to incorporate both countries into my books and have characters of both nationalities.
I’ve read so many books from different authors and also watch a lot of TV shows. These collectively give me ideas for my own books and I build on them from there. I got the idea for ‘The Crowded Souls Trilogy’ whilst watching an episode of Sleepy Hollow.’
What was one of the most surprising things you learned while creating your book/s?
‘I was surprised by how much thought and work need to go into launching a book. Not the actual writing, I always knew that involved time and effort. But the self-marketing that goes along with it. The networking on social media and building a fan base that is the basic foundation for a successful first-time novelist.
I previously had the idea, I’m sure others share, that I could write a book and it would get published, thrown on a shelf at Waterstones and I’d be on the best-seller list soon after. I now know, as my publisher often tells me, that I’m creating a business and true of all new businesses, publicity is key.’
What inspired you to write your first book?
‘Looking on Amazon, I saw so many Authors selling their books. In this day and age, it’s easier than ever to become published, though often, self-published. This inspired me to begin writing because so many others have gone before me. I’m also a firm believer in fate, so when I was lucky enough to meet my publisher only days later from making the decision to get on with it, this definitely gave me the push and the confidence I needed to continue with my book.’
What was the hardest part of writing your book?
‘Much as I can write a sentence and make it sound funny or clever, my English and more accurately, my grammar are not that great. I’m still honing my craft, but seeking professional advice ensures you put out the best book you can. That does not stop me from learning every day and I’m not embarrassed to say that I often have to Google the answers!’
Did you learn anything from writing your book and, if so, what was it?
‘I’ve learned a lot about the actual processes involved in publishing a book, which is a very long drawn out process, but also extremely interesting. I’m looking forward to seeing the final result when I have that first printed shiny new book in my hand.’
Also, I now know that a pentagram means different things depending on what way up it’s facing!
Do you have any advice for other writers?
Pick a genre that you read and are comfortable writing in. Get creative writing books and learn your craft and most definitely start building a following on social media as soon as you can.
Most of all keep writing and striving to improve. If you want something enough and you make it your goal, you will get there.
Give us an insight into your main character. What does he/she do that is so special?
‘Leila is a sarcastic British seventeen-year-old living in America. She’s experienced loss and has been coming to terms with that for five years. She’s smart and feisty with many layers that are revealed throughout the trilogy.’
Which actor/actress would you like to see playing the lead character/s from your most recent book?
Leila – Bailee Madison
Luca – Nick Robinson
Alexandra – Mae Whitman
If this book is part of a series, tell us a little about it?
‘The books follow Leila Albergo, who develops supernatural powers early on in the first novel. From then on she has an internal struggle between good and evil. Will she use her powers selfishly to gain revenge, or be the bigger person? It’s a rollercoaster of emotions for her from start to finish.’
What is your favourite book and why?
Besides my own? 🙂
‘Virals’ by Kathy and Brendan Reichs.
I have always loved Kathy Reichs novels, but often get caught up in the technical, complicated scientific aspect of her Temperance Brennan books. The Viral series are aimed at a younger audience, so it’s easier to enjoy her style of writing and the stories are more fun and light-hearted.
Who is your favorite author and what is it that really strikes you about their work?
Though she has written several books, she always comes up with new and clever storylines. She has become so successful that her Temperance Brennan series has been turned into a popular US TV show ‘Bones’. She’s an inspiration to aspiring authors and to have just an ounce of her success would be a dream come true for me.’
TO PREVIEW JEMMA BECKHAM’S DEBUT NOVEL ‘The Tormented Witch’ from the CROWDED SOULS TRILOGY AND PRE-ORDER CLICK HERE