About Emma Rose Millar:
I'm a single mother and an author of historical fiction, living in the UK. I also work part time as a sign language interpreter.
My first novel, Five Guns Blazing, based on the true story of pirates Anne Bonny and Mary Read, won the Chaucer Award For Historical Fiction, (Legend Category) in 2014. My novel, The Women Friends: Selina, inspired by Gustav Klimt's sensuous masterpiece, was shortlisted for the Goethe Award for Late Historical Fiction, in 2016. I am currently editing my third novel, Delirium, the story of a bogus spirit medium, set in Victorian London.
In my spare time, I run a support group for families living with autism, and enjoy yoga, live music and making pretty things.
What inspires you to write?
I love gathering interesting historical snippets; characters or situations that make me want to find out more. Sometimes it might be a painting, a photograph, or even an old postcard, which makes me think, "Yes! I could write a story about that!" My novella, The Women Friends: Selina, was inspired by Gustav Klimt's beautiful painting of the same name.
My grandfather was also a constant source of inspiration to me. He was orphaned at age three and spent the rest of his childhood in a poor law school. My novel, Five Guns Blazing, is about a young girl, placed in an institution for her own safety and moral correction, who is later transported to the colonies with her convict mother.
Tell us about your writing process.
It involves a lot of late nights and a huge amount of coffee! I can't even start writing until my 7 year old goes to bed, so most of my writing is done late at night or very early in the morning. I start with an idea of the main characters and a rough story outline, usually just bullet points, and work from there. I see my manuscript as a loom, into which I will weave meany different threads of the story.
For Fiction Writers: Do you listen (or talk to) to your characters?
I don't really talk to them, but while I'm writing, my characters are real to me. I can hear them, see them, read every facial expression. I get to know each of them as I would a close friend, all their flaws and eccentricities. In any given situation, I know how each one will behave. Sometimes they still surprise me though.
What advice would you give other writers?
I'd say always to plot your story from beginning to end. You can still deviate from your plan if you come up with an amazing idea half way through. I used to just get an idea and run with it, but then somehow I could never finish the novel. Now I know how my stories end, I can keep going and never lose my way. Oh, and you editor is your best friend. Embrace constructive criticism; it will make the finished product so much better!
How did you decide how to publish your books?
I didn't want to self-publish. I think I needed the affirmation of somebody believing in my work, other than my mother and best friend! Good publishers support you through editing, cover choice and marketing. I consider myself very fortunate that Crooked Cat Books were willing to take on my writing.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
That's a difficult one. I think there will be less paperbacks and less bookshops, unfortunately. I say 'unfortunately' because I love browsing in bookshops, particularly the smaller, independent ones, I love the feel of a physical book, and my heaving bookshelves in my living room. These days, marketing is the key, and the market is flooded. There are loads of great books out there getting swamped.
What do you use?: Co-writer, Professional Editor, Professional Cover Designer, Beta Readers
What genres do you write?: Historical Fiction
What formats are your books in?: Both eBook and Print
All information in this post is presented “as is” supplied by the author. We don’t edit to allow you the reader to hear the author in their own voice.