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Before she was a writer, my guest this week was a musician. Proficient on piano, guitar and French horn, her most cherished instrument was her own; she yearned to be an opera singer. That didn’t work out, but she says she still feels ruled by the visceral power of music. Her stories come from musical phrases and metaphors that don’t explain themselves. Sometimes she writes by candlelight. She is award-winning urban fantasy author Leah Bobet, and she’s on the Red Blog with her Undercover Soundtrack.
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The most haunting pieces on The Undercover Soundtrack delve far deeper than inspiration. My guest this week shares a very personal story. Her debut novel, about a teenage piano prodigy, didn’t come from a captured track in headphones. It was her own brother learning Rachmaninoff piano concertos in the room above hers. The character struggles with bipolar disorder, as she has in her own life. A later novel tackles an incestuous and doomed love between brother and sister, a harsh and frightening story that she says took a severe toll on her own mental health. Her fiction has won multiple awards and her brother is finishing his studies at the Royal Academy of Music. She is Tabitha Suzuma and she’s on the Red Blog with her Undercover Soundtrack.
GIVEAWAY: Tabitha has signed print editions on offer for the three most interesting comments. If you enjoy her post, let her know!
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My guest this week was so young when Faber bought her first fantasy novel that her father had to sign the contract. She’s more than built on that early promise by scooping the Carnegie Medal and the Guardian prize and is so prolific that in her credits she only lists her best-known works. Her imagination has ranged everywhere, from a fantasy czarist Russia to the far future – and thrilling, evocative music has been intrinsic to all of them. She is children’s author Susan Price, and she’s on the Red Blog with a truly rich Undercover Soundtrack.
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- Avoid this plotting pitfall when writing drafts at speed May 22, 2016
- Avoid dumb plotting errors – post at Alliance of Independent Authors May 15, 2016
- ‘When I feel like a storm is raging’ – The Undercover Soundtrack, Stephanie Carroll May 12, 2016
- How to become a ghost-writer – post at Jane Friedman May 9, 2016
- One for them, one for me: ghost-writers and their soul projects May 8, 2016
- All aboard the ghost(writing) train… and get an early bird deal for my course May 7, 2016
- ‘The journey is more important than the destination’ – The Undercover Soundtrack, Toni Davidson May 5, 2016