I’ve just checked out your website. Your bio talks about a career in music but a dream of writing. I’ve just interviewed a writer at the opposite end of his career path who has turned to writing after a life in the film industry. Do you find the creative paths of music and writing compatible – maybe even complimentary?
I find that they both integrate with each other as often when I am writing I will have music in the background. It has always been something I have enjoyed and I hope that one day I will be able to combine my two loves of writing and music into one novel, but that is a way of for the moment. I mostly found that when I was creating a piece of music for one of the BA modules I would create plot ideas in my head to fit alongside the music or when listening to certain types of music I can write certain scenes better. I have been told by a few of my friends who both know my music taste and have read my novel that they can tell when I was listening to Heavy Metal and when I was listening to Classical/Country music.
Really interesting. I’ll try letting my writer’s imagination flow next time I’m listening to music and see what happens!
Turning to your debut novel ‘In Memory’, with its chilling trailer, what led you to write horror?
In Memory started off as a horror novel but always had paranormal influences. After a while of re-writing it became a full paranormal fiction. I was always inspired to write horror/books using the paranormal by people like H.P. Lovecraft as when growing up I loved the games based of off his work, I have never yet read one of his books but is defiantly something I plan to read in the future.
I’m fascinated by the written word which can cross reality with paranormal. You begin with a tragic case of a lady Sarah Summers who loses everything, even her sanity. She has absolutely no control of her life. It is in this lost world that she faces her demons – or is it the world facing demons in which she is a key part. Suddenly the power balance has altered. Am I guessing that this is a message you are trying to put across?
The demons come to her after she is sectioned in the Marleyland Mental Institute, I think the demons are a key part in her both regaining some semblance of her old self and regaining her sanity as throughout the novel I tried to use Cornelius as at first an aggressor but then someone who becomes a friend and who genuinely cares for Sarah’s wellbeing and wants her to both survive and get over the troubles that she went through. By the end of the first novel I had hoped that readers felt like Cornelius was helping Sarah to be reborn as something else.
Maybe we all need a Cornelius too. Was your character name ‘Sarah Summers’ chosen to be cheerful and light for a reason?
I chose the name Sarah Summers because I thought that something about my main character should be happy. Sarah has been through a great deal and when I was planning both her and her overarching story-line, I felt that she should be able to have something happy to her as one of the many endings I have for the In Memory Trilogy is rather depressing for Sarah, I haven’t decided which way the final book will go yet though.
You explain that you ‘wish to put a new perspective on the written word.’ Can you explain this to your potential reader?
Most of the books that I read are marketed at YA and some of them I found hard to read as they were unnecessarily twee or crass in my opinion. I found that some of the storylines were rather basic and whilst there are a load of great YA authors put a lot of work into designing their worlds I found that most didn’t. What I want to do is to bring back the hard work and enjoyment that readers find from reading my novels, I want readers to feel invested in the world I have created and invested in the characters I have created. I would love it if one reader related to Sarah or enjoyed the interaction between Sarah and Cornelius. If just one of my readers enjoys the characters then I am happy.
I’m so glad that there is a surge in YA’s reading. It is a good sign, but you’ll have more of an idea how to reach them.
Well Joshua, before you go, can you tell your readers what to expect next. Is ‘In Memory’ part of a series?
Yes absolutely! In Memory is part of a self titled trilogy the second of which ‘Shadowborn’ is currently being edited, the trilogy is set over a period of many years recalling many events and trials that both Sarah and Cornelius have to overcome. I hope to be launching my second novel at the UK Indie Lit Fest 2016 (http://indieliteraryfest.weebly.com/) I hope to see some of my readers there.
Maybe I’ll meet you there too Joshua.
Many thanks for joining us today and I wish you every good fortune in your life as a writer and your trilogy!
Joshua Sutton’s novel ‘In Memory’ can be bought on Amazon:
Here’s the link to Joshua’s Website: