Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Interview and Giveaway with novelist Clare Revell!!!

Today we welcome prolific author Clare Revell to The Diamond Mine!! Her latest book is Down To Sleep, a romantic suspense novel, and book # 1 in the Say a Prayer series.

Saying a prayer may just be the last thing you ever do.

DC Zander Ellery isn't sure which he dislikes the most: New partners, rookie female officers, or cases he can't solve. Right now he has all three.
DC Isabel York is fresh out of uniform and out of the proverbial frying pan into the fire as her personal and professional lives clash with her first case—ten stolen works of art.
When a postcard arrives addressed to Isabel with a cryptic message on it, it's just the beginning. The mystery deepens as the first of the stolen paintings is found alongside a dead body—bound and gagged and left posed in prayer at the place depicted in the postcard.
Are nine more murders coming? Can Zander and Isabel find the missing paintings and solve the murder before another victim falls?

This sounds like a great read, Clare!  

Readers, please remember to leave a comment in order to be entered in the giveaway for a free copy of this book! 

And now for the interview!

What made you become a writer? 

I’ve always written. Dad found my school books from when I was five and they are full of rewrites of Little Red Riding Hood, usually with my own take on the story. Then at ten it was Dr Who stories. Then at twelve, Blake’s Seven stories—what I now know is called fanfic. At fourteen I wrote a book as part of English class. (That has since been published as the 3 book Signal Me series—with a LOT of additions.) I also wrote a lot of Stargate SG1 fic – some of which could well still be out on the internet somewhere under a pen name. I started adding my own characters to those shows and then it turned into just my own characters.

You were definitely made to be a writer!
What genre or genres are your books?

Usually romantic suspense… heavy on the suspense bit as I love crime fiction. And romance, so I tend to shove the two together.

That's a great mixture!
Can you tell us a bit about your latest book?

Down To Sleep is the first in the Prayer Slayer series. The continuation of the story is also available in Soul To Keep, Before I Wake and Soul To Take.
One serial killer, two police officers and ten broken commandments. Trouble stalks the dark streets of Headley Cross in a way it never has before. Streets where no one is safe and no one knows who they can trust.

Detective Constable Zander Ellery and his new, fresh out of uniform partner, Isabel York are all that stand between the killer and his victims.

How did you get the idea for the story?

This lies solely at the feet of my editor, Lisa McCaskill. She emailed me randomly, as she does. The email was along the lines of…
I was driving and a childhood prayer ran through my head. I thought of you. So here are Down To Sleep, Soul To Keep, Before I Wake, Soul To Take. Do with it what you will. So I sat and thought for half an hour, emailed her back with a basic premise and that was it.

Wow! That was quick!
Do you have a favorite character from your books, and if so, why is this your favorite?

Hmmm, that’s a bit like asking me who my fave child is out of my 3 kids… To be honest, they all are. I have one in the planning stages where something major happens and in capital 

We do get very attached to our characters, don't we?
Once you begin a story, do you write it in bursts of inspiration, or do you work steadily off an outline?

Well, the short answer is yes. I have an outline, and the characters mess it up all the time. They change their names (glares at the entire cast of the series I’m currently writing) or they decide to go off on their own and do something stupid which changes the course of the whole thing. Some books take longer to write than others. The one I’m currently doing was started back in 2009 and been ignored ever since. It may well get ignored a little longer.

I love your description on the often capricious nature of characters!
What was the most unusual inspiration you’ve ever had that resulted in a book? 

The random email from Lisa became the Say A Prayer series. A Facebook conversation became Turned.  My sisters school homework project became After The Fire (yes I kept the idea written down that long lol). A TV show where everyone’s bleeps went off during a funeral became Quinn’s Choice. And then there’s fairy stories which became Down in Yon Forest and Once Upon A Christmas.

I see that you are a prolific author! How many books have you written so far, and about how many books do you usually write in a year’s time?

I have 63 books written so far. Three of those aren’t published yet. I have about ten either planned or part written. It takes me roughly 6-8 weeks to write a book, depending on the length and how fast the plot comes. Virtually Yours at Christmas took ten days to write.

I handwrite everything first in basic note form, essentially the story in miniature, but is about three times the length of the synopsis, because I detail each chapter which is draft one.  For example, J and R go the park. Dog runs off. R finds a box containing another message. J and R go home to open box properly with O and K.

Draft two is handwriting the entire book where chapters get changed; characters do stupid stuff necessitating another 5 chapters to fix that bit before going back to the plan. Because, for example, the box contains not just a message but a teleport and they all get kidnapped by aliens and the dog sets fire to the house. But they have to be home for an important meeting on Friday. So I need 5 chapters to kill the aliens, somehow send them all home so they can be there Friday for tea with the Queen… no idea where she came from, but this is what happens.

Draft three is typing it up, where it always changes slightly again. Words get added and the story fleshed out a little and so on. It then gets edited by me and a crit partner.  The most I’ve ever written in a year is twelve – the Flowers Can Be Fatal series.

Let me get my jaw off the floor... 63 books! All I can say is WOW!!
What’s your favorite thing about being a writer?

Working from home. Picking my own hours. A two minute commute. Casting my own books with whoever I want. Downside – the pay is rubbish. The biscuit tin is next to the kettle. My desk is in the lounge, along with the TV and everyone else who happens to be home that day. My desk thus becomes home to all kinds of junk. (No, kids, my Christmas shelf on the desk does NOT count as junk. It’s revenge for you not allowing me the tree up all year long.)

Oh yes. I agree completely with your favorite things.
What are you working on now?

Several things. I’m working on a sci-fi series, the on and off one from 2009. It was three books, it’s now turned into four. Book one is complete, book two is a third done, books three and four are in pre-basic note form.
There’s one I started a while back and got shoved to the back burner.
And I have another idea or two for Zander and Isabel, which I’m kind of plotting.          

Well, may you continue to be so prolific. That gives us all more of your novels to enjoy. Thanks for the interview, Clare!

Here is a short bio and after that, social links for Clare. And don't forget to leave a comment for your chance to win a free copy!

Clare is a British author. She lives in a small town just outside Reading, England with her husband, whom she married in 1992, their three children, and unfriendly mini-panther, aka Tilly the black cat. Clare is half English and half Welsh, which makes watching rugby interesting at times as it doesn’t matter who wins.
Writing from an early childhood and encouraged by her teachers, she graduated from rewriting fairy stories through fan fiction to using her own original characters and enjoys writing an eclectic mix of romance, crime fiction and children's stories. When she's not writing, she can be found reading, crocheting or doing the many piles of laundry the occupants of her house manage to make.
Her books are based in the UK, with a couple of exceptions, thus, although the spelling may be American in some of them, the books contain British language and terminology and the more recent ones are written in UK English.
The first draft of every novel is hand written.
She has been a Christian for more than half her life. She goes to Carey Baptist where she is one of four registrars.
She can be found at:
She also has a newsletter. You can sign up for it HERE. Your email never gets passed on, and you won’t be inundated with mail either. It’s four maybe five times a year.


Kay Garrett said...

Thank you for the interview with Clare Revell. It introduced me to a new to me author who I'm hoping to get to know very soon with the opportunity to read "Down To Sleep". Sounds like a marvelous book and one I would greatly enjoy reading.

Loved the comment she made about having a Christmas shelf on her desk. I, too, love Christmas and Christmas stories are a way to keep the spirit of Christmas alive in our hearts all year long.

Thank you for the fabulous opportunity to win a copy of "Down To Sleep" which is most definitely now on my TBR list. Shared and hoping to be the very fortunate one selected.

Be safe, stay healthy and have a little adventure - even if through the pages of a good book.
2clowns at arkansas dot net

Paula Shreckhise said...

These books sound fantastic This author is very prolific. Thanks for the chance to win this book.

Clare Revell said...

Thank you so much for having me here.

Pamela S Thibodeaux said...

GREAT interview Ladies!

Wow, Clare it is amazing how you and Lisa work together for you to create such wonderful books.

Good luck and God's blessings!

LoRee Peery said...

I devoured this series. You know I'm an avid fan, Clare. Good to see you here.

Caryl Kane said...

Enjoy meeting Claire. "Down to Sleep" sounds like a page-turner.

Caryl Kane said...

Forgot email. psalm103and138atgmaildotcom