Kathy Gates is a well traveled author who wrote the clean reads book “Juliet’s Journey”. Click the title to see my 5 star review of the book.
Q: Your book “Juliet’s Journey” is placed in northern Italy. You describe the scenes with a fondness I can only guess comes from someone who has fallen in love with the place. Have you been there?
A: I was lucky enough to spend two weeks in the beautiful village of Baiardo in 2007. Yes, it is a real place! I also spent time in San Remo, even went to the ‘Notte Bianca San Remo’ – an important event in Juliet’s Journey. I’d love to go back and revisit both places, in fact I hope to do that next year.
Q: In the book a big time real estate fella comes in and wants to turn the school into some nonsense vacation home. How do you personally feel about landmarks such as these being overtaken by wealthy home development companies?
A: I’m not against all progress but development should be done in consultation with a community. Developers are about making money; they often end up killing what makes a place attractive and even driving out the locals in the process.
Q: Where do you find the most inspiration for your writing?
A: Most of my stories so far have been inspired by my travels. In 2007-2008 I took a ‘mid-life’ gap year and went to Europe. That was brilliant, I had travelled before that but had never had time to really wander and explore.
Q: What advice would you give to a new writer?
A: Get your story out on to the page! Write it as you feel it and then go back and edit, refine and redraft. When you have a first draft show it to at least three readers who will give you an honest opinion. Their feedback will mean another draft before you hand it over to an editor who will help you shape and polish your manuscript. The final step is proofreading – preferably by a new set of eyes.
Just for fun :
Q: If you were stranded on a deserted island, what 3 things (other than basic survival items) would you want to have? (It’s perfectly acceptable if you choose a volleyball named Wilson)
A: My e-reader—with a solar-powered battery—loaded up with my favourite books so that I could re-read them all (I have a lot of ‘favourites’), my hula hoop and a hat with a wide brim.
Q: What would you say is the weirdest phobia you have?
A: Whenever I travel I become obsessed with the thought that I might miss my train, plane, ferry or bus. It’s never actually happened and I don’t imagine it would be the end of the world if it did. Plus I know that the feeling is irrational but I can’t shake it until I’m safely sitting in my seat and ready to go.
Q: What was something you did/wore/loved that was totally cool when you were a teen, but you now wish you could erase from history?
A: I had a piece of clothing that is hard to describe – think it was called a ‘jump suit’ – it was white and cut off at the knees. It probably looked like a nurse’s uniform at the top with long shorts attached.
Q: If the Zombie Apocalypse happened, how do you think you would fare?
A: I’d arm myself with a cricket bat (as per Shaun of the Dead) and hope for the best.
Q: If you could pick any place to live in the world, where would you live? (time travel is acceptable )
A: Hobart for six months and travelling for the other six months.
Summary from Goodreads:
Juliet Carlsen is grieving the loss of her mother. Six weeks after the funeral she is about to arrive in a tiny village in northern Italy. The village, Baiardo, is home to an art school where she is to spend a month as a volunteer. Her best friend had convinced her that a change of scene would do her good but, as she nears her destination, she is not so sure: was it really necessary to travel so far out of her comfort zone?
Baiardo turns out to be her haven. The warm welcome and serene beauty work their healing magic. The attentions of a handsome local named Luca don’t hurt either. Then someone from Juliet’s past shows up and turns everything on its head.
This book is available for purchase through Amazon. Click the title “Juliet’s Journey”.
I definitely recommend this book.