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To start with the following are a few questions which relate to your latest book ‘Ecstasy’ published by Ransom Publishing as part of the Cutting Edge series:
I think we get a better understanding of Carrie as the book progresses and her process of self discovery allows us to be empathetic with her when she finally confesses her part in the night’s events.
The empathy which develops between Mrs Truong and Carrie is the twine which binds their different life experiences together. The ‘ah ha’ moments each have as they share their stories of Mai-Ling’s life allow them both to reflect on their unconscious and conscious role in the tragedy as a whole. Carrie’s party girl attitude of ‘all care no responsibility’ contrasts with that of Mrs Truong but inevitably both women play a significant role in Mai-Ling’s life threatening circumstance.
I think Carrie, being so young, believes she is ‘bullet proof’. Her father’s power and money have always been her safety net. This, coupled with some naivety has given her the bravado that she is infallible. Mrs Truong’s life, in contrast, has had no ‘safety net’ and so her life experiences have centred around her survival and the survival of her family. It is clear that money has given Carrie more opportunities in life and softened her landing on many occasions but as she realises her father’s money cannot change the events of this one night we see her attitude starting to change.
Ecstasy is not a story about drugs or drug taking per say. It is a story about the emotional fallout of those left behind to cope with the end result a friend’s decision to experiment with drugs.
Absolutely, I think the issues addressed are those of belonging albeit in the story this theme is wrapped up as cultural belonging therefore I believe the relevance of this is far reaching.
Ecstasy is my second book, the first book, Raindance was published in 2006 so I guess I’m relatively new as a writer.
As a mother I am concerned about the issues teenagers face with the pressures of fitting in with their piers and experimenting with new experiences. I wanted to write a book which reflected the emotional journey of those of us ‘on the outside looking in’. I believe stories are a traditional means of relating experiences and they allow us to walk in another’s shoes.
Yes, I have wanted to write since my early twenties but for one reason or another I put it on the back burner until I was in my early forties. Despite the fact that I appear to be a ‘serial career changer’ my desire to write has been a constant.
With the break down of my second marriage I suddenly found myself as a single working mum with two very small children. Holding down a full time job meant I had no time to spend on anything which meant extra hours away from the home. I turned to writing as my ‘time for me’ after the kids went to sleep and it seemed like the ideal opportunity to launch myself into the one thing I had never found time for before. I think the old adage ‘if you want something done ask a busy person’ was the case here.
My research is often done by observing people and how they cope with or react to the situations they find themselves in. Extrapolating these experiences and emotions into my characters help build the human side of my stories and around this I research the factual details I need using books, the internet and so on.
Disengage the brain and allow yourself to ‘catch’ your story without over thinking it. The brain is a computer which can only run the programs which have been installed by the past. To create something imaginative you need to use your senses and your imagination.