Author Interview: Rebecca Emin

A little about Rebecca:

I live near Oxford with my husband and three young children. I always said that I would write a novel one day but it was only when I was approaching my 40th birthday that I realised I should stop saying it, and get on with writing! I started writing regularly in 2009 and have since developed a love for short stories and flash fiction as well as novel length writing.

Your book New Beginnings released on January 23rd.  Can you tell us a little about it?

New Beginnings is about a girl called Sam who starts at her secondary school and becomes a victim of bullying. During the book it shows how she deals with this, and also develops her own self confidence and makes friends with people both at school and elsewhere. Sam is interested in the performing arts so there is also another side to her story as she develops this too.

Where did you get the idea for New Beginnings?

I know a lot of people who have been bullied (including myself) so I felt it would be a subject that many people could relate to, and I knew I would be able to write from Sam’s point of view as I had experience of how it felt to be singled out like she is.

In your novel New Beginnings, Sam has to learn to face the bully's and overcome and summon up her courage to perform onstage. In todays society pressure from bullies and peoples comments hold people back from fulfilling things a person wants to do. Do you think your book will send a positive message that you can overcome this and gain the courage to do what you want no matter the negatives from others?

I like to hope so. As I mentioned, I was bullied myself and even now I would not have the confidence to do some of the things that Sam does in the book, however I have finally got on with developing my writing and the feedback from others has built up my confidence a lot. Sometimes it takes a long time, but I think having other things to focus on is an incredibly useful thing.

How does it feel to be releasing New Beginnings?
It’s a very exciting day for me, despite the fact that I have had my author copies for quite a while now. I still think this date is significant, which is the reason I set up the online launch party, as I didn’t want it to go past without being noticed. It is very special when a publisher says they would like to publish your writing, so this book will always mean a lot to me.

New Beginnings is YA however would you place it in any other category?

This is a really interesting question, as I have had readers from age 8 up to people in their 70s who have said they have enjoyed the book, which is such an honour. I think there are threads in the plot that will appeal to people of all ages.

Why should we read New Beginnings?

I would like to think that people who are being bullied would find this book helpful. I mention Bullying UK in the book – and I am also donating 10% of any profit I make to this charity. Their contact information is in the back of the book, so if one person uses this to get help I will be happy.

I also hope that other readers will think about what could be going on around them, and maybe be aware of situations that otherwise may go unnoticed.
Most of all though, I hope people will read the book, enjoy it and have that ‘feel good’ feeling once they have finished reading it.

Are you currently working on any more projects?

My second novel is complete and I am currently hoping to find a publisher for that. It’s called ‘When Dreams Come True’ and it is aimed at the 10-14 age group. I have a collection of short stories for adults which was published in November 2011, which is called ‘A Knowing Look and Other Stories.’ For the first part of 2012 at least, I am concentrating on writing short stories.

Thanks to Rebecca for the interview. I will be reading New Beginnings in Febuary and will post a review later in Febuary.

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