Sunday 26 July 2015

A Conversation with Linda Huber

Linda Huber lives in Arbon, Switzerland where she works as a language teacher in the beautiful and inspirational setting of Arbon Castle, overlooking Lake Constance. Born and raised in Glasgow, Scotland, Linda left for Switzerland, aged 22, with the view to working and travelling for a year but remained there to raise her two children. 

Linda originally trained as a physiotherapist and worked in this field for many years before moving into teaching. Close contact with neurological patients and handicapped children has given her an insight into the different coping mechanisms people have when faced with difficult and stressful situations and this has helped her in her writing.

Linda has had the writing bug since she was very young and has seen over fifty of her short stories and articles published. She loves to read suspense and thrillers and writes in this genre.

Although Linda has been writing throughout her life she considered it a hobby until the publication of her first novel, The Paradise Trees, in September 2013. Just a year later, in August 2014, The Cold Cold Sea, was published and now, July 2015, her third novel, The Attic Room, has just been released.

The Attic Room: When Nina is bequeathed a substantial estate from a man she has never heard of her life is thrown into turmoil as she unpicks the threads of her past and that of her mysterious benefactor. Having travelled from her house on Arran to see the house she has inherited, Nina becomes embroiled in blackmail and lies as she uncovers dark family secrets. It is a novel full of suspense and intrigue and we wish Linda every success with it. A trailer of the novel can be viewed.

Tell us of your journey as a writer

I started as a seven-year-old, doing my Writer’s Badge in the Brownies and discovering that this was something I REALLY enjoyed. That was it; I haven’t stopped for longer than a few weeks ever since. As a youngster I wrote stories about children and these became novels for children. By the time I had my own boys I was also writing short stories for magazines, and when that was moderately successful I began my first adult novel, the book which became The Cold Cold Sea. I sent it to a few agents over the years but never really thought it would be published. But to my astonishment, in 2012 Legend Press picked up my second novel The Paradise Trees (thus turning it into my first published one) and I was a published writer!

How do you see your role as a writer and what do you like most about it?
I love writing – creating my paper people, shaping their world, their hopes and fears, their story. It’s the best feeling in the world when you write something and it works. I’m not sure I have a role as a writer because I write very selfishly, for myself first of all. And in a way it’s like having children – I love my book ‘babies’ and I’m gratified when others like them too, but I would still feel the same about them if no one else ever read them.

Have you ever created a character who you dislike but find yourself empathising with?
No. I’ve created a character who does awful things – the Stranger in The Paradise Trees – but although I see what made him the way he is, that isn’t truly empathy because I don’t understand how anyone could make such bad choices. Many people have similar childhoods without becoming Strangers. In The Cold Cold Sea I can empathise with Phillip, who does a truly terrible thing, but he’s such a nice guy, I just want to hug him!

If you could be transported instantly, anywhere in the world, where would you most like to spend your time writing?
Ooh, if instant transport was available I’d go to a different place every week and soak up inspiration. I’d start in Scotland, on one of the islands, then I’d go to Cornwall and Greece and to Hawaii and California and New York. It sounds amazing. Wish it was possible!

What is the one book you wish you had written?
A High Wind in Jamaica (by Richard Hughes).

What advice do you have for would be novelists?
When you’ve written your novel, you’re a novelist, and your job now is to make it the best novel it can become. For this you need outside help. (If I’m allowed to make recommendations here I’ll mention The Writers’ Workshop. I still work with the editor I met there in 2011.) Then you can choose if you want to look for an agent, a small indie publisher, or self publish. There’s never been as much choice as we have today.

What are you currently working on? What can we look forward to reading?
I’ve just self-published The Attic Room and hope to have another out this year or early next. Then I have a further completed and edited novel and at the moment I’m swithering about what to do with this one. My work-in-progress has a working title of The Death of Grandma Vee. It’s based on a lengthy subplot we edited out of The Attic Room because it was really a novel in itself. It’s fascinating using it now with different characters - the plot is developing in quite a different way.

You can follow Linda on Twitter:@LindaHuber19

1 comment:

Linda Huber said...

Thank you so much for inviting me on your blog!