AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Elizabeth Buchan

daughtersbuchan.jpgElizabeth Buchan's new novel Daughters was published earlier this monthand we couldn't wait to interview her about the new novel, which is one of our Mother's Day picks. You can also read an excerpt of Daughters over at Elizabeth's website.

Please describe your latest book in 15 words or fewer.

What can happen on the run-up to a family wedding? Lara and her three daughters find out.

What inspired you to write Daughters?

Jane Austen's Mrs Bennett knew exactly what she wanted for her daughters - marriage. Today we don't think in those terms, yet I could not help feeling that mothers still  sneakily yearn to see their children settled - one way or another. It was the perfect subject for a novel especially as Jasmine, Eve and Maudie have very strong views about their lives and their futures and don't necessary want their mother, Lara,  to interfere.

Where do you do most of your writing?
I have a tiny room at the top of the house - where the baby used to sleep - which I have colonized. Unfortunately, the cats have decided to join me and we are constant negotiation for the space. Apparently, they consider they are novelists too. I look down into a city back garden which is a perfect sanctuary for manic squirrels, foolhardly frogs and the urban - and worldly - fox. Humans don't seem to get much of a look in.

What is your favourite book?
What an agonizing question. Jane Eyre? Persuasion? I think I will plump for Ian McEwan's Atonement.

Which part of Daughters was the most enjoyable to write?

I am totally useless at sewing, so I adored researching how wedding dresses are made - all those wonderful materials, the fittings, the mystery and excitement of the bridal figure ... the final product when, for a little while, some sort of magic transforms the bride on the day.
What are you currently reading?

I have twenty books on the bedside table all begging to be picked up. Since I am deep in research for the Second World War for the next novel, they have been neglected. When I do get round to them, I think I will have to toss a coin between William Boyd's Waiting for Sunrise and Jojo Moyes's Me Before You.

Who is your favourite heroine?
You would be hard pressed to match Jane Eyre - so tough and brave and impassioned. A real role model.

Do you have any tips for readers who are looking to become published authors?

Do it
Do it
Do it

I have learnt that no amount of dreaming and talking can produce a novel. What does  do it are the long hours at the computer - tough but there is no way round it.

I should add: please have belief in yourself. If writing a book is something you long to do then you can and we published authors will cheer you on because we were in that position once.

Are you working on anything else at the moment and if so, can you tell us?

Its title arrived in my head in the middle of the night - One Life is Not Enough. It is set in Denmark during the war and it's about a family who find themselves on opposing sides and one of them trains in England to be an SOE agent. As a teenager I read Carve Her Name with Pride and I want to rework many of its heroic elements.  I plan to have a big love story and plenty of action.

Thanks, Elizabeth!

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Elizabeth Buchan - Comments

  • Patricia Eimer

    I love any book with a good mother daughter dynamic in it and this one sounds cute. And your WWII novel sounds interesting as well. 

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