Saturday, 2 September 2017

Diana talks to Samantha Houghton

Hi Samantha. You are such an inspirational lady that as soon as I heard about your book, I knew I wanted to talk to you here on Diana Talks...
I am sure there is a question that you have always longed to be asked. Now is the chance. Ask your own question and answer it!
Why did I write my book? I wrote my book for a few reasons – other peoples stories of overcoming adversity have hugely inspired me over the years and I promised myself that I wanted to do the same for other people one day. I also wrote it for myself, I still had some embedded shame about my past and writing was a way of letting go. Also I love to write about emotions and thoughts. My book covered all three.

What is the genre you are best known for? As this is my first book, it would be mental health/self development – but I am getting known for this as my passion, writing or otherwise.

If your latest book The invisible Girl: A SecretLife   was adapted into a TV show or a film, who would you like to play the lead role? Now there’s a question…I’m going to choose Angelina Jolie as I recently read about the adversity in her life that she overcame and think she would totally understand the role.

What made you choose this genre? It chose me, as it is my own true story.

Favourite picture or work of art? There is no one’s art work specifically, I just know when I see what I love – it’s usually something a little abstract but not too extreme. I appreciate different, bold, textured and detailed all in one.

If, as a one off, (and you could guarantee publication!)  you could write anything you wanted, is there another genre you would love to work with and do you already have a budding plot line in mind? I believe I would enjoy writing a psychological thriller, and yes I have an idea of how I’d like it to go using some real life elements as inspiration.
Was becoming a writer a conscious decision or something that you drifted into (or even something so compelling that it could not be denied?) How old were you when you first started to write seriously. When I was at school, I adored creative writing and excelled in class. I would always be reading and writing out of school, short stories, poetry and letters. Then as I got older, started a family, it drifted. However during the past five years in business I have rekindled my love to write with blogging, copywriting and social media posts. Last year, after getting into public speaking, all I felt compelled to do was to share my story, this turned into writing about it. I wrote two chapters then due to the nature of my story I froze and came away from sharing it. Then earlier this year, I sat down and within sixteen days the book was written. It was incredible!

Marmite? Love it or hate it? 

Do you have any rituals and routines when writing? Your favourite cup for example or ‘that’ piece of music...??  I am most productive when I am in a quiet coffee shop, a latte at my side and the energy really works magic for me.

I promise I won’t tell them the answer to this, but when you are writing, who is more important, your family or your characters? I do like to be fully focussed, but as my writing is true life, my family are the characters!

Other than writing full time, what would be your dream job? Possibly a forensic psychologist or my other freelance work, as a mindset mentor/coach.

Coffee or tea?Red or white? Coffee definitely ( already mentioned above !) and red, unless its sparkling.

How much of your work is planned before you start? Do you have a full draft or let it find its way?  I like a rough plan to work from, what I call my skeleton that I can add the meat to and allow the writing to elaborate and flow.

If you had free choice over the font your book is printed in, what font/fonts would you choose? I choose the fonts this time, but I think it depends on the style of the book to be honest, but nothing too small as it is more accessible for people with limited vision.

Cornish clotted cream fudge or strawberry fudge? J Clotted cream

Imagine that you could get hold of any original source document. What would it be? I would be fascinated to read work that I wrote as a teenager but I destroyed most of it as it held bad memories for me.

How much research do you do and do you ever go on research trips? I did a little family research and created a time line of events to work from. I did not go on any trips.

Authors of non-fiction have to contend with real characters doing their own thing. Are there any ‘real’ characters you have been tempted to ignore because you just don’t like them or they spoil the *plot*? It was difficult to write about certain people in my book and situations, but felt they were an important part to leave out. I wanted to give a real life portrayal.

How important to you is correct historical detail in tourist orientated venues? Relatively important.

Have you ever totally hated or fallen in love with one of your characters? Totally hated yes….

What do you enjoy reading for pleasure? I read mostly non fiction as I love to learn, research and study for my work, so a lot of psychology and self development books for me. Also memoirs.

What drink would you recommend drinking whilst reading your latest book? Coffee…or something stronger perhaps as it is very nitty gritty and raw.

Last but not least... favourite author? As not reading fiction myself these days, I love memoirs but most are one offs. As a serial writer, I love Dave Pelzer’s work. Amazing writing and amazing guy.

About "A secret Life":

A very honest and heartfelt true story of a girl's struggles with her mental health from her teenage years through to mid life. Admitted to a psychiatric unit at fifteen and continuing to suffer throughout her adult life with Bulimia, Depression, Anxiety, Obsessions and Self Harm. 
Always struggling with her sense of self, searching for answers and the therapy that would make the big difference. Fiercely determined to overcome adversities in her life during her journey through motherhood, divorce, relationships and employment through to her passion for personal development to launching her first business. Sharing what helped her and the insights that developed throughout her life. An inspirational story full of hope, strength, tenacity and a huge desire to reach out to others in a dark place.

A note from Diana. This lady is very beautiful and very brave and has my utmost respect.

Please tag her her Facebook page.

© Diana Milne January 2017 © Samantha Houghton 15/8/2017

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much Diana bless your heart <3 Sam