Thank you for joining me on the blog tour for Strategy by Anita Waller. Today I have a guest post from Anita where she shares a day in her life. First of all let's take a look at the description for the book...
How much can one family take?
Jenny Carbrook murdered three people to make it look as though there was a serial killer at work in Lincoln, when the only person she wanted to kill was Ray Carbrook, her father-in-law, who had raped her the week before her marriage to Mark, Ray’s son.
Jenny wrote letters detailing her crimes in order to protect everyone she loved, but was forced to go into hiding before retrieving the evidence against her. Not only did she leave the letters behind but also her young daughter, Grace.
Now Jenny has a plan, a strategy, to get the letters back. But it’s not only the letters that Jenny has in her sights…
A day in the life of Anita Waller
It’s 7.45 am, I’ve already had by bacon sandwich and a cup of tea, the sun is shining, and the computer in the corner of the kitchen is on and ready to go. I sit and stare out of the kitchen window for a few minutes, as you do, and then type in my password. It’s wrong. I type it in again and it works.
I have lots to do today. It is within one month now of the launch date for my new book, Strategy, and some input from me is required… you mean I don’t only get to write books? I amend and adjust my bio, stick a picture of this aging 71-year-old author on the end of it, and save it. Then I do a document containing links to me and to my published books. Easy. I check the email to see what comes next, and it’s a press release.
That one was fun. It’s almost as if I’m writing about someone else, as it has to be written in the third person, quite disconcerting at times. By this time the sun has disappeared and I need a second cup of tea. The air in Yorkshire demands it.
While enjoying the cup of tea I check my emails, and I have a lovely one from a lady who organised a book talk I did at Sheffield Central Library back in February. This was my first ‘booktalk’ and I was so scared, but ended up loving it.
Sheffield has a Libraries week every October, and she wonders if I would like to talk again, at Highfield Library, Hillsborough Library and Stocksbridge Library – all in week commencing 9 October! I send off a quick ‘yes of course’, feeling like a real author.
So, all the time I am getting this work ready for the launch, my mind is pulling together the plotline that started to run through my mind just as I closed down the kindle last night. My new work in progress is a psychological thriller that is currently called A Legal Issue, although that could change. I haven’t touched it for around four weeks, as I have been to Crete, but my twitching fingers and my evil brain are forcing me back into writing mode. A little sample…
It comes at too high a price, having a baby, she decided. How do you hide the tears from fellow travellers as you remember his little face, now turned to his brand-new, first day child-minder, happily smiling with no intentions of missing you at all?
She was missing him, this unplanned child. It hadn’t seemed so bad when she had taken him to meet Sadie, to see if they bonded; she was simply doing a bit of forward planning.
She still had three months of maternity leave left; she was simply making tentative enquiries. Those enquiries had morphed into an afternoon every week while baby Jacob learned to know the woman who would be his child-minder.
And then reality hit and she was to return to work.
Banton and Hardwick, solicitors in the city centre, valued her. She wished they didn’t. She didn’t want to leave him with Sadie, she wanted to be there when he took his first step, got his first tooth, (which, at nine months and with no sign of a small white nub in his gums, was beginning to feel unlikely), spoke his first word; hence the tears as the tram took her ever further into the heart of Sheffield on that cold January morning.
A couple of people spoke to her and asked if she was okay; she just dabbed away the tears with a screwed-up piece of tissue and said she was fine.
She exited the tram outside the Cathedral and crossed Fargate to nip into Boots for more tissues. She thought she might need them.
She headed down through Paradise Square and came to the imposing steps leading up to her place of work.
Liz felt wobbly. She had last walked down those steps only two weeks away from giving birth, with Gareth waiting in the car, hazards flashing as he was parked illegally. She had had armfuls of gifts. The practice employed many people, and although the two partners to whom she was attached, had bought her the pram, every other member of staff had bought her an individual gift.
She took a deep breath and pushed thoughts of the last nine months to the back of her mind. She pulled back her shoulders and climbed the steps.
No tears, Liz, she warned herself. Be professional. Jake is in good hands, you don’t need to worry.
She didn’t know the receptionist, and the receptionist didn’t know her. Good start, Liz, she thought.
She introduced herself and Lucy welcomed her with a smile.
‘It’s good to meet you, Mrs. Chambers. Mr. Banton said you would be returning this week. This is your new ID tag,’ and she handed over Liz’s tag, complete with the new picture she had emailed to HR the week before.
So, I’m going to close down this piece of work. I will be starting work on the novel now, 11.37am, and apart from doing a sandwich for lunch will be at the computer for the rest of the day. I’d like to think I will finish around 5 pm but that could be a joke. It depends on what’s on television tonight! And whether my ideas are flowing or trickling.
And tonight we get a new addition to the family, a beautiful, fluffy, grey and white kitten. That could very easily stop the whole writing thing today!
Anita Waller was born in Sheffield, South Yorkshire in 1946. She married Dave in 1967 and they have three adult children, Matthew, Siân and Kirsty along with seven grandchildren ranging in age from Brad at 23 down to baby Isaac at 2 ½ years.
She began writing when she was around 8 years of age, writing 'compositions' at junior school that became books with chapters.
In 1995 she sent Beautiful to a publisher and as they reached the contract stage the publisher went into liquidation. It was all to do with Eric Cantona and leaping over the barrier - don't ask!
As a result, the book was consigned to the attic in dejected disgust but in 2013 it was dragged out again for an enforced complete re-type. The original was written on an Amstrad 8256 and the only thing that remained was one hard copy.
Anita is not a typist and it was painfully reworked over two years, submitted to Bloodhound Books who, within three days of reading it, offered her a contract. 31 August 2015 saw its release into the wide world.
Following the outstanding success of Beautiful, she began a sequel on 27 December 2015, finishing it on 19 March 2016. The new novel, Angel, was launched on 7 May 2016.
34 Days followed, with its launch in October 2016. This was a huge success, particularly in the United States. While this, her third book in the psychological thriller genre, was flying out in all directions, she began work on her fourth book.
Winterscroft was a change in genre. It is a supernatural tale, set in Castleton, Derbyshire, and its release date was February 2017.
While she was writing Winterscroft, it became very clear from reading reviews that a sequel to 34 days was needed, and she began work on that. Bloodhound Books will be launching her latest work, Strategy, on .
So where next? Her current work in progress is going by the working title A Legal Issue, and once again is a psychological thriller.
In her life away from the computer in the corner of her kitchen, she is a Sheffield Wednesday supporter with blue blood in her veins! The club were particularly helpful during the writing of 34 Days, as a couple of matches feature in the novel, along with Ross Wallace. Information was needed and they provided it.
Her genre is murder - necessary murder.
Facebook page: @anitawaller2015