The Writing Life of: Misha Herwin
This week I am thrilled to be interviewing author Misha Herwin. Misha will be sharing with us detail of her writing life, telling us all about her latest book ‘Bridge of Lies‘, which was released on 10th May 2019 and answering a few fun questions too. This post contains affiliate links.
Misha Herwin lives in Staffordshire, in a house with a dragon in the garden. She grew up in Bristol and has always been fascinated by the Clifton Suspension Bridge, which is where this story started.
When she is not writing the next Letty adventure, Misha enjoys reading, spending time with her family and baking raspberry muffins.
1) As a child did you have a dream job in mind?
As a child I wanted to be either a ballerina, or a trapeze artist, but since I didn’t have any talent in either direction, I suspect this was the pre-cursor of my true vocation which was to be a writer.
2) Who was your favourite childhood author (s)?
My favourite author was Violet Needham. I would immerse myself in her world of imaginary European Royalty. Her female characters, both young and old, were strong and drove the action and I was in love with her mysterious boy hero−the Storm Petrel.
3) Was there a particular point in your life that you realised you wanted to be a writer?
I’m not sure there ever was a point in my life where I realised I wanted to be a writer. Writing and telling stories was something I did from a very early age. I used to tell my younger sister stories at bedtime and our games were based on imaginary characters that I had made up.
4) What is your average writing day like? Do you have any special routines, word count, etc?
My average writing day goes something like this: yoga stretches, shower, breakfast, then morning pages− three pages of free writing. After this I check emails and social media and then get down to the WIP. I take regular breaks, otherwise my neck seizes up, and I find that I can’t concentrate for hours on end, so cups of coffee/tea, walks, or bits of gardening are essential.
5) How many books have you written? Any unpublished work?
So far, I’ve written and published: three novels for adults, one YA novel and five books for children. There are also plays, a couple of which have been published, while others have been performed here, and in Jamaica, by professional and amateur groups.
On my hard drive I have at least three books for adults and five for kids, two of these are WIP. I like to alternate the novels with the kids’ books and aim for one of each a year.
6) Are you a plotter or a pantser?
As for the way I work, I’m definitely a planner.
Concerning your latest book:
Adventures of Letty Parker Book Two
Publisher – Penkhull Press
Pages – 276
Release Date – 10th May 2019
ISBN 13 – 978-1916437326
Format – ebook, paperback
Letty Parker & Associates Detective Agency is open for business. So when, Isambard Kingdom Brunel’s famous suspension bridge is blown up Letty is keen to investigate but getting hired is not as easy as she thought, especially when the Dark Ones have their own plans for her.
Then there is Ma Pountney and her witches, plus The Bear and his gang of villains, each determined to stand in Letty’s way. Nothing is going right and one by one Letty’s friends desert her.
Even in a city, crowded with folk arriving for the Balloon Festival, Letty finds herself alone – and in the greatest of danger.
7) How did you go about researching the content for your book?
My latest book is “Bridge of Lies”. It’s the second book in the series “The Adventures of Letty Parker”. Researching the story was an on-going process. Having lived in Bristol, when I was growing up, helped, so did the fact that the Bristol in my book is an alternative one, but I did have to check facts about Victorian England and also about some of the characters who were real people.
8) How long did it take to go from ideas stage to writing the last word?
“Bridge of Lies” probably took two years from ideas stage to writing the last word.
9) How did you come up with the title of your book?
The title of the book refers to Brunel’s famous suspension bridge over Clifton Gorge. I also wanted it to follow on from “City of Secrets” which is the first of the Letty Parker adventures.
10) Can you give us an insight into your characters?
Letty is an independent minded twelve year old who used to make her living selling pies to the street children. In “Bridge of Lies” she has set up her own detective agency. She has a keen sense of fairness and loyalty to her friends, which will be sorely tested when things get out of hand.
11) What process did you go through to get your book published?
The Letty Parker books are published by Penkhull Press a small Indie publisher which is run as a co-operative.
12) What’s next for you writing wise?
My next project is to finish “Island of Fear,” the third book in the series.
1) If you could have any super power for the day which would you choose?
My superpower would be to fly so I could drop in on my family, all of whom live too far away.
2) Do you have any pets?
We’re a pet free house at the moment. We did have a rather grumpy cat called Seren, who like all our cats just turned up one day, but so far no cat has arrived to take her place.
3) If you decided to write an autobiography of your life, what would you call it?
My autobiography would be called “You can’t stop me now”, because now I’ve started you’re not going to stop me until every story has been told.
4) Your book has been made into a feature film and you’ve been offered a cameo role, which part would you choose, or what would you be doing?
If “Bridge of Lies” was made into a film, I’d want to be part of the writing team rather than on screen, unless I could be an extra in the crowd at the Balloon Festival.
5) Where is your favourite holiday destination?
It’s difficult to choose my favourite holiday destination. I love the Far East, but then there is Cyprus and Malta…there’s something about that soft Mediterranean light that really gets to me.
6) A baseball cap wearing, talking duck casually wanders into your room, what is the first thing he says to you?
I live in Stoke-on-Trent, so it’s got to be “Ay up duck.”
I would like to say a big thank you to Misha Herwin for sharing with us details of her writing life and for a wonderful interview.