I am a huge fan of Holly Webb, so I was absolutely delighted to be asked to take part in the blog tour for A Tiger Tale. Thankfully, the lovely ladies at Scholastic, let me interview Holly, to find out all her writing secrets.
1) A Tiger’s Tale is about to be published, can you tell us a little bit about it to whet our appetites?
Kate’s grandfather has died, and she is missing him terribly. He took her to school, chatted to her, cooked her cheese on toast. And he loved tigers just like she does. He gave her Amos, her toy tiger, and Kate is almost sure that Amos is more than just a toy.
2) Where did the idea for the book come from?
I’d noticed how many children at my sons’ school were being taken home by grandparents, and I wanted to write about the grandparent and grandchild bond. I also had much-loved toys in my head as a theme. Then one of my lovely readers sent me a photo of her handsome tigerish cat…
3) Being an experienced writer, do you find the process gets easier with each book you write?
Sometimes, but not usually. This book was very difficult to write, as it was so sad. I didn’t want it to be a miserable book, but at the same time, Kate is devastated. It was hard to balance that.
4) Do you try and aim for a daily word target when writing?
Yeeees. Somewhere between 1500 to 3000 words. But I often don’t get there! And I do a lot of reading which counts as work as well. So I tell myself.
5) Do you edit as you go along or do you wait until the first draft is finished?
A bit of both. I usually start off by reading what I wrote the day before.
6) When is your ideal time to write? Morning, afternoon or evening?
I don’t have an ideal time. I don’t think I’m a lark or an owl, more a sort of sloth. I still write well in the evenings, though, as when I worked full-time as an editor, evenings were my writing time.
7) Which authors inspired you whilst growing up?
CS Lewis, I loved the Narnia books. Also Betsy Byars, Michelle Magorian, and I adored A Little Princess and The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett.
8) What are you working on right now?
Lots of things! A book about a mouse that looks like a chocolate truffle. A series with some very greedy guinea pigs, and a book set during the Second World War that’s a sort of sequel to The Secret Garden.
9) What advice would you give unpublished authors?
Don’t stop writing, read and read, and never throw away any ideas.
Kate loves her toy tiger, Amos.
He was a present from Granddad, and holding him close makes Granddad seem less far away.
But she doesn’t expect Amos to turn into a real tiger! A big, comforting, friendly tiger who looks a bit like Granddad, and sounds like him too.
Holly was born and grew up in south-east London, but spent a lot of time on the Suffolk coast. As a child, she had two dogs, a cat, and at one point, nine gerbils (an accident). At about ten, Holly fell in love with stories from Ancient Greek myths, which led to studying Latin and Greek, and eventually to reading Classics at university. She worked for five years as a children's fiction editor, before deciding that writing was more fun, and easier to do from a sofa. Now living in Reading with her husband, three sons and one cat, Holly runs a Girl Guide group.
If you want to follow the blog tour for Holly Webb, then check out the dates and blogs below.