I’m delighted to welcome the lovely Della Galton to my blog today.
Writer, editor, creative writing tutor, dog-lover, she’s the agony aunt in Writers Forum magazine and a self-confessed workaholic (I hope I haven’t missed anything off…).
Della’s now involved in an exciting new venture: a series of novellas called ‘The Reading Group’ which launches on 1st December (and the first one’s free to download!).
They sound like perfect ‘curling-up-in front-of the-fire’ reading to me and I think the covers are lovely. You could almost EAT them!
So now it’s over to Della to tell you a little more and to answer my (very nosy) questions…
What’s It All About?
The Reading Group is a series of novellas about five women, who live in the seaside village of Little Sanderton and come together every month to share their love of reading. No topic is off-limits: books, family, love and loss . . . and don’t forget the glass of red!
There are five novellas. January, February, March, April, Summer Holiday. They are published by Quercus which is part of the Hachette Group and are 99p apiece.
Anne-Marie has always considered herself a bit of a matchmaker – never mind that she’s only got one real success under her belt. And this year she’s determined to up her game: Little Sanderton’s singles could certainly benefit from her expertise!
But while Anne Marie thinks she knows what’s best for everyone else, her own life couldn’t be less of a fairytale romance. Between looking after her cranky father and running her own business, she doesn’t have time for a relationship. Her friends in the Reading Group know better though: after all, love can be found in the most unexpected of places . . .
This January the Reading Group is tackling Jane Austen’s Emma . . . which has some uncanny parallels with Anne-Marie’s life, but who’s got time for fiction when romance is in the air….
How did the idea for The Reading Group novellas come about? I think I read somewhere that you were approached/commissioned to write them?
I was approached, you are correct. It wasn’t the first time I’ve been approached by agents to write things. Just before anyone gets too envious! Usually I write a sample, get very excited, then get turned down. But this time I wrote a sample and the agent said those incredibly exciting words, ‘They love it. Write the rest. Contract’s on it’s way.’ OMG doesn’t cover it.
Have you ever been in a reading or book group yourself and if so, did you draw on your experiences of that? Or did you research reading groups? Or did you just make the whole thing up?!
I have never been in a Reading Group, no. Although I’ve been in plenty of writing groups. But I do have a group of amazing female friends. It was kind of based on them.
Who’s your favourite character in the novellas?
I’ve been waiting for someone to ask me this and it keeps changing. It started off with Anne Marie who’s the MC in January. Then it changed to Kate who’s the MC in February. Then It was definitely Jojo who is the MC in March. But I’ve just written April and guess what? I’ve fallen in love with Serena, who is the MC in that! Sorry, that’s not much help is it.
Any plans for more Reading Group novellas after these initial 5? Or is it a case of ‘watch this space’?
There’s a summer holiday one – and it’s possible there might be others. Definitely watch this space.
You’ve changed your name to Della Parker for these books. I’m curious – can I ask the thinking behind that please? (don’t tell me it was a typo!)
Actually, it’s nearly as unexciting as being a typo. I was asked to change so that these novellas would be a ‘debut’. you know, one of those overnight successes that come after 30 years!
The short story that launches the Reading Group is called December. And it’s FREE. Please download it here.
Thank you so much for having me 🙂
It was a pleasure, Della! And good luck with The Reading Group. I’m sure it’s going to be a great success!