Today is my stop on The Devil’s Poetry blog tour and I am here with Louise Cole today as she has been interviewed by me!
About the Book
Questions are dangerous but answers can be deadly.
Callie’s world will be lost to war – unless she can unlock the magic of an ancient manuscript. She and her friends will be sent to the front line. Many of them won’t come back. When a secret order tells her she can bring peace by reading from a book, it seems an easy solution – too easy. Callie soon finds herself hunted, trapped between desperate allies and diabolical enemies. The Order is every bit as ruthless as the paranormal Cadaveri.
Callie can only trust two people – her best friend and her ex-marine bodyguard. And they are on different sides. She must decide: how far will she go to stop a war?
Dare she read this book? What’s the price – and who pays it?
Commended in the Yeovil Prize 2016, this is an action-packed blend of adventure, fantasy and love story.
‘Twisty, suspenseful and occasionally heart-rending, The Devil’s Poetry is a captivating read. I raced through it.” Emma Haughton, Now You See Me
If you had to summarize The Devil’s Poetry in a tweet, how would you?
Everyone you know will be sent to war – but a cult claims you can save them by reading from an ancient book. Dare you? What’s the price?
While writing The Devil’s Poetry, did you pick up any odd habits? (i.e. drinking coffee at 2am?)
I talk to my dogs about the plot and the characters. I have three cocker spaniels and they are fairly tough critics. Their favourite stories all feature rabbits so they’re a tough crowd. When I’d get really stuck on a plot point, I’d tell them all about it while I washed the dishes or cooked. The best writing buddy among them is Millie because she will hug you when it’s all going wrong.
What was your favourite thing about writing The Devil’s Poetry?
It’s really hard to answer this without spoilers. I loved writing the scenes at the end. I love choreographing all my different characters, each with their own agenda and the stakes growing ever higher, into a tumultuous climax. There are points where I literally hold my breath as I’m writing. And I am completely immersed. I’m in those scenes as I write. My feet thud across the streets of London, riots breaking around me, fear and adrenaline chilling my skin.
What is your favourite thing about writing in general?
Oh first drafts. Just wonderful. First drafts are like falling in love. You are giddy with excitement, and completely obsessive about pouring out this story. I write first drafts very quickly – usually two or three weeks. Part of that comes from the years of journalism which make me a very fast and productive writer but it’s also that, during that time, I don’t want to do anything else. I throw my family take-away menus, I don’t read other people’s books, I don’t do my normal day job. I cut out this chunk of time entirely for me and I live a new story. It is such a rush and an unbelievable privilege.
Of course, then you have the six months of unremitting hard work, redrafting and editing, and that’s not as much fun.
If you could live in any fictional world, which would you choose and why?
Middle-earth from Lords of the Rings. I think it has everything; magic, beauty, elves. I think I’d live in the Shire. It has so much in common with my beloved North Yorkshire.
What is your favourite book ever?
Oh see, that’s a mean question. How am I supposed to narrow it down to one? I think the series – and yes, I know I’m cheating – that I’m completely fangirl about is Robin Hobb’s Farseer novels. I’ve been in love with Fitz since I first opened Assassin’s Apprentice. I love that we get to follow Fitz and the Fool through their whole lives, weaving in and out of different trilogies. A wonderful world, a great magic system, fascinating characters. And Nighteyes. Best animal character ever.
If you could give one piece of advice to an aspiring author, what would it be?
If you write, you are a writer. And all writers aspire, constantly. We want to try new things, to write better, to reach more readers, to explore new stories. That tag: ‘aspiring author’? It’s always feels to me like it’s this judgmental division between the published and the unpublished. But that’s a meaningless divide. There are novice writers, and veteran writers, there are good writers and great writers, and writers who are just starting to master their craft. But once upon a time, we were all just starting and none of us ever stops. So hold your head up, because creativity and storytelling are precious and worthwhile in and of themselves. People see publication as a means of validation and money – but they don’t see how much published writers struggle with the distinct lack of validation and money. The important bit, the bit that will never cease to be true is that by crafting your story, you have nurtured your own soul and made the world a better place. Writing is not about individual pieces of text in isolation – between us, we create a huge ocean of words. And they can change the world.
About the Author
ouise Cole has spent her life reading and writing. And very occasionally gardening. Sometimes she reads as she gardens. She can be seen walking her dogs around North Yorkshire – she’s the one with a couple of cocker spaniels and a Kindle. She read English at Oxford – read being the operative word – and hasn’t stopped reading since.
In her day-job she is an award-winning journalist, a former business magazine editor and director of a media agency. She writes about business but mainly the business of moving things around: transport, logistics, trucks, ships, and people.
Her fiction includes short stories, young adult thrillers, and other stuff which is still cooking.
Her YA and kids’ fiction is represented by Greenhouse Literary Agency and she is also published on Amazon as one of the Marisa Hayworth triumvirate.