Today I am taking part in the blog tour for Berlin Calling. I’m sharing my Q&A with the author with thanks to Rachel Gilbey at Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me on the tour and to Lilo Moore for answering my questions!
Have you always wanted to write?
Yes, I wrote stories as soon as I picked up a pencil and I always wanted to be a writer, when I was a child. I wrote novels as a hobby all through secondary school and I have an old file of young adult fantasy stories that I wrote at that time. I discovered romance as a genre when I was about sixteen and never looked back!
What were your previous jobs? Have they helped you with your writing process?
What was your inspiration for Berlin Calling?
I thought quite a few years ago that Eurovision would be a great setting for a romcom and I was part of an online chat with some readers and writers and we all thought someone should write a Eurovision romcom. A few months later, the Netflix film with Will Ferrell was announced and I thought of it as a proof of concept rather than someone beating me to my idea. So I decided to go for it and write my Eurovision book, with a one-night-stand turned into on-stage rivals story, set in Berlin, because that’s somewhere I’ve lived and it’s an amazing city.
How do you construct your characters? Do they have traits of people you know?
I struggle to use anything out of real life, as my books are supposed to be escapist and take people away from reality. I often use celebrities as the inspiration for small aspects of my characters.
What does your writing process look like? Are you a plotter or a pantser?
I am a plotter, but a fairly free-flowing plotter. I write an enormous plan in prose (often more than 4,000 words), with a few paragraphs for each character journey and then just a big flow of action after that. I often don’t plan the ending, though (beyond knowing it will end happily, as all my books do!). I plan up until the crisis moment and then reassess once I’ve written that far and see how I think it should end.
How did you research? Did you enjoy it?
I loved the research for this book! I watched the historic moments of Eurovision over the past fifty years, and Eurovision records and statistics. I saw so many funny costumes and big hair and lots of big, passionate ballads! To research the final act of the book, I had to double check how the scoring is announced and that was a bit less fun, because the Eurovision scoring is so long-winded! At least I could condense all that tension into a page or two in the book, instead of the half-hour it takes in the real contest!
Who would play the main character/s in a film version of Berlin Calling?
She’s a bit older than the character in real life, but I love Anna Kendrick and I could see her playing Rose. And Emil could be played by Robert Pattinson.
What is next for you?
Now I’ve started up this new pen name, there is always another book to write! I’m currently writing my winter release as Leonie Mack and I’m counting down to the release of a Taste of Italian Sunshine, my next book with my publisher, Boldwood Books. I’m also editing the second Lilo book, called Beerfest, which is due out in June. It’s about two best friends attending a reunion at Oktoberfest in Munich who start to question whether there could be something romantic between them.
I loved ‘You and Me on Vacation’ by Emily Henry. Among ‘classic’ books, I love Kurt Vonnegut, Slaughterhouse Five and Cat’s Cradle.
10 Things I Hate About You
Whoever is in my current writing playlist!
At the moment I watch a lot of K-dramas! There’s something about these long Korean romcoms and historical soaps that just draws me in. But it takes me months to get through a series.
Green all the way.
This question makes me nostalgic! I miss the Australian biscuits from my childhood, like Monte Carlos and Scotch Finger biscuits. And when I moved from the UK to Germany, I had a whole new set of biscuits to miss! I would love a bourbon biscuit, right now!
Berlin Calling is available from Amazon.
You can follow the rest of the blog tour here: