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Today I am part of The Lost Child Blog Tour with a q & a with Ann Troup
Hello Ann– Thank you for taking part in this interview. Would you like to start by introducing yourself to my readers..?
Hi, and thank you for having me here today. I’m Ann Troup and I am the author of The Lost Child, my debut novel which came out on 19th May this year. I live in Devon, right next to the sea and spend my time making things up, writing them down and creating books. When I’m not doing that I am usually chasing about with my dog on the beach, or making other things – I am also an artist and like to dabble with all sorts of different media.
The Lost Child can you tell us a bit about it?
The Lost Child is essentially the story of the mysterious disappearance of Mandy Miller and how it affected her family and the community where she went missing. The story is set in the fictional village of Hallow’s End, a curious, secretive place that seems to be stuck in time along with most of its residents. Mandy’s sister Brodie and her new found friend Elaine stumble across the secrets and lies that have masked Mandy’s fate and unravel the mystery, but with consequences they couldn’t have anticipated. It would seem that some secrets are best left buried…
How did you go about doing the research for the The Lost Child?
I didn’t need to do much formal research for the book, living in Devon made setting the scene fairly straightforward and the backstory of the characters came from long years of people watching. I did do some historical research into the setting of Hallow’s Court and did find that there are still houses like this in many areas of the country. The only problem with researching is that it becomes so fascinating that it’s easy to forget why you are doing it. There were a few days when the book became very neglected in favour of some serious Google self indulgence. One thing that I would like on tap is my own police officer, so that I can check the accuracy of police procedure, that would be handy especially if said officer would be willing to do the hoovering and make the coffee while I write! Fortunately I have many knowledgeable friends who are willing to help, even if they do draw the line at doing my housework.
Who are your favorite Authors? And what genre of books do you enjoy reading?
It’s much easier for me to list the genres I rarely read than to describe the ones that I do. I rarely read high fantasy, too much world building and who begat who – my poor brain wont retain it! I also rarely read romance now, mainly because I gorged on it when I was younger, found my own romance, played the ‘reader, I married him’ card and get to live it out every day – which is nice
(anyone who follows me on twitter wont believe a word of that!)
Long time favourite authors are Kate Atkinson, Anne Tyler, Alice Walker, John Steinbeck…the list goes on. My current favourites are Lee Child (love a bit of Reacher), Ben Aaronovitch, Charlie Stross, Phil Rickman…I could crash your site if I go on. Suffice it to say, I read a lot and always appreciate good writing and fresh voices.
What is the best thing about being a writer?
For me it is the freedom to construct something exactly the way I want it to be. I can right wrongs, manipulate environments, cast characters and see what they get up to and generally escape into my imagination any time I want to. It’s like being a kid again, which is never a bad thing as long as I remember to be an adult sometimes.
Favourite writing place?
I usually write in my little office, which is fondly known as the Empty Nest. It was my youngest child’s bedroom until she moved away. Now it is full of creative paraphernalia and junk and is my favourite room in the house. It’s very light and sunny and is the one room that is all mine and that I don’t have to tidy if I don’t want to. I dread the day someone wants me to post a picture of it, I would probably get a visit from one of those ‘Hoarders: buried Alive’ programmes!
I see you also have a blog – have you got any blog tips you would like to share?
I do have a blog, and it is my nemesis. I can write a book no problem at all, but blog posts? Gah, I really struggle! I tend to just post about the silly things that happen to me, or my bizarre thought processes about things. I like to pretend that no one will ever read it and that it’s fine to tell the world that I really am mostly daft and live in my own little world. My only tip would be; don’t ask my advice on blogging unless you want the world to think that you are a slightly inept, cardigan-wearing buffoon.
And finally – have you started writing your next book? Any clues as to what it maybe about?
I have started my next book. It has a similar flavor and tone to The Lost Child, but entirely different setting and characters. It will also be a mite darker as it revolves around a series of gruesome murders and a man who was wrongfully hanged. I am also writing a series, but I will keep that under wraps for now.
Thanks so much for having me, it’s been a lot of fun answering your questions.
Mandy Miller disappeared from Hallow’s End when she was just 3 years old. She was never found.
Thirty years on, Elaine Ellis is carrying her mother’s ashes back to Hallow’s End to scatter them in the place that she once called home. Elaine has never been there, but it’s the only place Jean talked about while she was growing up – so it seems as good a place as any.
As Elaine settles into her holiday cottage in the peaceful Devonshire village, she gets to know the locals; family she never knew she had, eccentric and old-fashioned gentry, and new friends where she would least expect them. But she is intrigued by the tale of the missing girl that the village still carries at its heart, and which somehow continues to overshadow them all. Little does she know how much more involved in the mystery she will become…
Ann Troup tells tales and can always make something out of nothing (which means she writes books and can create unique things from stuff other people might not glance twice at). She was once awarded 11 out of 10 for a piece of poetry at school – she now holds that teacher entirely responsible for her inclination to write.
Her writing space is known as ‘the empty nest’, having formerly been her daughters bedroom. She shares this space with ten tons of junk and an elderly Westie, named Rooney, who is her constant companion whether she likes it or not. He likes to contribute to the creative process by going to sleep on top of her paperwork and running away with crucial post-it notes, which have inadvertently become stuck to his fur. She is thinking of renaming him Gremlin.
She lives by the sea in Devon with her husband and said dog. Two children have been known to remember the place that they call home, but mainly when they are in need of a decent roast dinner, it’s Christmas or when only Mum will do. She also has extremely decent stepchildren.