Today I am delighted to be part of the Blog Tour for Redemption Road by Lisa Ballantyne. Redemption Road was a compelling read (see my review) and I highly recommend it. Below I have a Q&A with Lisa Ballantyne and I hope you enjoy the answers.
Don’t forget to visit other blog stops along the tour for other great content. Enjoy guys 😉
Can you in five words describe your book to those who haven’t read it?
A father and daughter fable.
What is your writing process?
I always start with character – just imagine my main characters and who they are. I believe that characters give heart and soul to books (and films for that matter) and truly understanding a person or character helps me to understand what motivates them to act… and that is the basis of plot.
Was there anything in this book that took you by surprise?
The scene where the teenage George and his loan shark father visit a debtor on a building site was an interesting one to write. It was one of the rare occasions when a character takes over and I as the writer watched the scene I was writing unfold. I knew George intimately, and I knew that he couldn’t do what his father was demanding of him. The outcome of the scene was George’s only choice and so he made it for me.
Do you have any advice for inspiring writers?
I don’t ever feel in a position to give advice, but I know things that have helped me! My motto is always, ‘once it’s finished, it exists’. I try not to get disheartened as I write, but press on… once a manuscript is complete you can assess it, but you can’t edit what you have not written. My other advice would be ‘write if you have to, and if you don’t…don’t’. Writing is agonising, obsessive, draining and gives you curvature of the spine. Only embark on it if you are driven to it so much that you cannot avoid it.
Do you have a favourite moment in the book? Can you share it with us?
I like the blossoming relationship between Moll and George. In my writing, I always return to relationships between parents and children because it is such fertile ground. Families in general are a wonderful resource for novelists, but children in particular are interesting because their personalities are still developing. I was also interested in the child, Moll, teaching her newfound father something – as all children are important teachers of adults. It was then that I hit on the idea of George being illiterate because of the institutional violence that he had experienced at school. Moll’s patient teaching not only liberates George but also repairs some of the damage that was done in his past.
Can you tell us about what you are working on currently?
I am writing a new novel. I don’t like to speak about work in progress.
And finally is there a question that y0u have always wanted to be asked? What is it? And what would your answer be?
I don’t want to be asked any questions. Most writers prefer the role of observer to observed, and I am one of those. Writing is an act of questioning and finding answers and I suppose that is where I feel most comfortable….
Finally can I say a big thank you to Lisa for answering my questions and I hope you all enjoyed! What did you think of my Q&A with Lisa Ballantyne?