Today I am delighted to be involved in the blog tour for Nowhere Girls to celebrate International Womens’ Day. My post is presented with thanks to Anne Cater for inviting me to take part, and of course, to Teuta Metra for writing her post.
Friends Alba and Sara could not be more different. While Alba is forcing her way into the upper echelons of Albanian’s richest and most powerful, Sara is working more than one job as a struggling journalist. Both desperate to escape their corrupt country, they’re quickly dragged into a sordid world of politics and lies. When tragedy strikes their friend Ina, the two women must come together to save her little boy. Can they put away their troubles and secure a better future for the child? Or will their past catch up with them? NOWHERE GIRLS is a thrilling tale of love, lies and the lengths a woman will go to for freedom.
Teuta Metra tells us ten things we didn’t know about her.
Ten Things You Didn’t Know About Me
- I’m too scared to write in English.
English is my third language (after Albanian and Dutch). I was born in Albania and I now live in the Netherlands, and although I speak English to a good standard (and read books in English all the time) I’m too scared to write in it. This means my books have to be translated by professionals, and of course that comes with plenty of expense and difficulties. For the moment this is something I’ve had to deal with, although it’s really hard.
2. I’ve been writing since I was a teenager.
I began to write poetry in high school (like many of us). One day I decided to show my poems to my literature teacher – and he said that my poems were a load of crap! I was so disappointed and it’s only just occurred to me how I haven’t written poetry since. And it’s also why I began to write fiction.
My first story published in a newspaper was when Princess Diana died in 1997. I was 17 years old when I wrote a story called “Why did you leave Lady Di” I showed it only to my best friend. Her eyes welled up while reading the two pages I’d torn out of my notebook. She asked if she could show it to her mum and I agreed. She didn’t bring the story back to school the next day, and I was too shy and worried she hadn’t liked it to ask if her mum had read it. So I kept quiet. A week later, my friend came running up to me waving a newspaper in the air. She had written to the editor of the newspaper and they had published my story. It was the best surprise ever and my first step to being a journalist and storyteller.
- I’m always saying ‘I’ll never write again’ –but I always go back to it.
After I finish writing a book and I have a hard time with all the processes that follow, I tell myself and my family that I’ll never ever write again. But luckily, I forget about it as soon as I start writing a new story. While waiting for Nowhere Girls to be edited, I wrote the first draft of my fourth book. Don’t ask me when it will be published because at the moment I’m at the stage of vowing that I will never translate a book into English again. But, as I said, I’m sure I’ll forget that promise soon too.
4. I’m really good at motivating others. Honest.
Throughout my life I’ve tried to help people, even those who I’ve just met and may never see again. When my friends are down, I try to lift them up and make them laugh. Although I’m so bad at motivating myself – I’m a very negative thinker!
- I’m serious. Sometimes too serious.
I take my job seriously, even though I don’t have to sometimes. When I moved to the Netherlands I couldn’t speak a word Dutch, and that frustrated me. Of course I couldn’t speak the language, I was living in a brand new country that I’d never even visited before. I knew it would take time, but I wanted to talk Dutch perfectly since day two! It took me a while to learn, because I wouldn’t allow myself to talk out loud if I was making mistakes. I think I’m cursed with perfectionism. When I discovered this phrase, I was so relieved as now I know I have to work on it. That makes me feel better.
6. I love my family.
As I said am I very good at criticizing myself, and I’m very good at pointing out my own weaknesses, but the only thing that I can’t find fault with is my boys. They are perfect just the way they are. The only perfect creation I have ever made.
7. I drink too much coffee.
I love drinking coffee. I think this addiction started when I was working as a journalist and it never stopped. I could drink up to 6 coffees (big cups) a day. At this point I think I drink more coffee than Sara, my protagonist – and she drinks A LOT!
- ButI also love drinking wine.
At weekends there’s nothing I love more than sitting on a warm couch with a glass of fine wine and a good book by my side.
9. My favourite food is grilled prawns.
Even thinking of spicy grilled prawns and a glass of wine makes my mouth water.
10. I watch movies when I need cheering up.
When life becomes too serious, or I have too many things on my plate, I sit down and watch comedies. Nothings else, just back-to-back comedies. After having a good laugh, life seems so much better.
Nowhere Girls is available from Amazon..
You can follow the rest of the tour here: