Q&A with Beth Merwood

Today I’m taking part in the blog tour for The Ultimate Village Game. I’m sharing my Q&A with the author with thanks to Rachel Gilbey at Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me on the blog tour and to Beth Merwood for answering my questions!

Have you always wanted to write?

I think so. I made tiny books as a child: wrote them, illustrated them and sewed in a seam!

What were your previous jobs? Have they helped you with your writing process?

I’ve worked in theatre and tv, and I suppose they have helped in some ways, but in the main, I see writing as a completely separate part of my life. 

What was your inspiration for The Ultimate Village Game?

The Ultimate Village Game was inspired by life and people. I like to observe the quirks people have and imagine all that’s going on in the background, the things they may never talk about.

How do you construct your characters? Do they have traits of people you know?

I don’t base characters on individuals. A character may be built from a glimpse of a stranger or a fragment of an overheard conversation. Once they come into being the characters grow into themselves. I do like to take time imagining how they would behave, what they would say and do and so on. I believe the more characteristics you give them, the more each begins to take on his or her own persona. Then again, they could still take you by surprise and do something completely unexpected!

What does your writing process look like? Are you a plotter or a pantser?

I have a rough idea of what is going to happen, but the story develops as I write. The characters definitely have their own ideas too, and can take off on their own detours along the way.

How did you research? Did you enjoy it?

With The Ultimate Village Game, research was likely to involve taking myself out and absorbing the lives of other people, in the park or at a cafe for example. A peep into a person’s life, a reaction, a greeting, I wanted to observe the nuances of everyday goings on. 

There were also times when I consulted reference books or reverted to trawling the internet to discover inspiring locations. 

I don’t mind the research side of writing, and it has to be done, but I enjoy writing much more. 

Who are your favourite writers? Are you influenced by them?

I like to read a diverse range of authors. Choosing favourites is difficult, but one of my favourites would be Donna Tartt. I don’t know if I’m influenced by her.  

If you could invite three people, living or dead, to dinner, who would they be and why?

I’d like to learn more about some of the established writers that I admire, so I am inviting three very different but phenomenal living and breathing women writers: Donna Tartt, Nancy Atherton and Taylor Jenkins Reid.

Who would you least like to be stuck in a lift with and why?

I could choose from a range of politicians here. I would probably say something I’d later regret!  

Who would play the main character/s in a film version of The Ultimate Village Game

In the film of The Ultimate Village Game, Lucy would be played by Jodie Comer. I can’t wait to see it! 

What do you like to do in your spare time?

Walk with my dog.

What is next for you?

I’m writing a mystery with a touch of paranormal.

Favourites:

Book? The Secret History by Donna Tartt

Film? The Birds, Alfred Hitchcock

Band/Singer? Right now, I’m going to pick George Ezra.

TV show? I like Scandinavian detective dramas and anything cozy. 

Colour?  Currently, all sorts of blues.

Place? Countryside, preferably with sea.

Biscuit?  A dark chocolate digestive, please.

***

The Ultimate Village Game is available from Amazon.

You can follow the rest of the blog tour here:

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