Thursday, August 21, 2014

Jenny Colgan offers up some treats...plus a book giveaway

Photo courtesy of Facebook
Today, Jenny Colgan is here to tell us how she writes two characters in two different timelines. Her novel, Sweetshop of Dreams was published in the US earlier this month by Sourcebooks and they have a copy for someone in the US or Canada!

A former columnist for The Guardian, Jenny Colgan contributes regularly to national BBC radio and is the author of more than eleven bestselling novels, including her recent international bestsellers The Loveliest Chocolate Shop in Paris published in 2014 and Welcome To Rosie Hopkins' Sweetshop of Dreams, which won the 2013 Romantic Novel of the Year award from the Romantic Novelists Association. She is married with three children and lives in London and France. You can visit her at her website, Facebook, and Twitter.

How do you balance writing between two timelines in Sweetshop of Dreams? Did you find it difficult to switch between Lillian and Rosie?

Actually it wasn't my intention to switch timelines at all. It was Rosie's story really, I just included a flashback to Lilian's past to give her some context in terms of the type of woman she was.

Then, I got really caught up in her story, I loved writing it and just adored the romance. It is slipping out of living memory, the Second World War; the stakes were so much higher then. So it was fun, plus I really enjoyed Lilian's cranky voice when she's talking about contemporary candy- I like her absolute refusal to have chewing gum in her sweetshop because she thinks it's vulgar!- so I just put more in.

It also, I hope, contrasts nicely with Rosie who, although she is a lot younger, obviously is much more conventional than her great-aunt; she's a nurse, so she's always trying to be sensible and look after people. I really like their dynamic. I do think people who look after the elderly well are just about the best people on earth. It's rewarding to look after a baby; to help and be kind and sweet and patient with people at the other ends of their lives is much harder.

To get back to the book, that's the fun of writing too: you can always have a shot at trying something new, and seeing if it works or not. I remember the first time I ever wrote a flashback, about ten books ago, and sending it to a writer friend of mine, saying, 'does this work?' and her saying, 'why on earth do you think I know what I'm doing either?". Which made me feel a lot better! And that's why it's always worth giving everything a shot...

Best,
Jenny


Synopsis:
Rosie Hopkins's life is...comfortable. She has a steady nursing job, a nice apartment, and Gerard, her loyal (if a bit boring) boyfriend. And even though she might like to pursue a more rewarding career, and Gerard doesn't seem to have any plans to propose, Rosie's not complaining. Things could be worse. Right?

Life gets a bit more interesting when Rosie's mother sends her out to the country to care for her ailing great aunt Lilian, who owns an old-fashioned sweetshop. But as Rosie gets Lilian back on her feet, breathes a new life into the candy shop, and gets to know the mysterious and solitary Stephen—whose family seems to own the entire town—she starts to think that settling for what's comfortable might not be so great after all. (Courtesy of Sourcebooks.)

Buy Links:
Amazon * BAM * B&N * IndieBound * Indigo * Kobo

How to win:  Use Rafflecopter to enter the giveaway. If you have any questions, feel free to contact us.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


US/Canada only. Giveaway ends August 27th at midnight EST.

24 comments:

pascale said...

I would communicate with my grandmother who passed away years ago (another time, it seems).
I would try to get all of her recipes.

Bonnie Franks said...

If I could connect with someone from another time, it would be my mother's father, who died when she was 4 years old. He was a hard-working man and my grandmother was sixteen-in-love with him her whole life, so many years after he was gone. I would like to see him for myself.

Witchbone said...

I'd love to go back in time and meet author Angela Carter and discuss Nights at the Circus with her.

Janine said...

I would love to know some of my ancestors.

susieqlaw said...

My Grandfather

Kristy Zuverino said...

I love family history so I'd have to say one of my ancestors.

Dcimo2 said...

I would like to know my paternal grandmother, who passed away before I was born, and who I look like.

lauren m said...

one of my grandparents. if i had to pick then my grandfather who i never met because he died when my mom was 9

lauren m said...

one of my grandparents. if i had to pick then my grandfather who i never met because he died when my mom was 9

Robin Driscoll said...

I would have to say my great-grandmother who I was named after but never met.

traveler said...

I would communicate with my mother whom I miss daily. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

Bonnie K. said...

I would love to meet my mom's mother and her parents to learn more about them.

bluedawn95864 at gmail dot com

Anita Yancey said...

I would like to connect with my mother's father, because he died 8years before I was born. I would love to know what my grandfather was like. Thanks for having the giveaway.

PoCoKat said...

My grandmother who passed away young.

Melanie Backus said...

I would connect with my great grandparents.

mauback55 at gmail dot com

jodi marinich said...

i would talk to my dad once more before he passed

bn100 said...

Jane Austen

debb1955 said...

Martha Washington

cyn209 said...

I would love to meet my Aunt, my Dad's sister, whom I never met........

Melissa Seng said...

If I could go back in time, Laura Ingalls Wilder. I was the BIGGEST Little House on the Prairie fan. I'd have a bitch-session with her about Nellie Olson. ha ha

rubynreba said...

I never met my Grandpa Nels. Would love to communicate with him.

Books and Java said...

I would communicate with the younger me.

Courtney Giardina said...

I think I'd like to go back to hang out with Cleopatra.

Katherine Ivan said...

I wish I could connect with my maternal grandmother, whom I met only once when I was 2 years old (she passed when I was 4).