LozzasBookCorner: Daisy, thank you for coming on the blog today, can you tell us a little about yourself to start with please?
Daisy James: Hi Laura, first of all thanks so much for having me as a guest on your blog. It’s great to be here! I write contemporary romance fiction and have been writing for years. I have several scribbled novels in shoe boxes on top of my wardrobe and one day I just said - right, it’s about time I finished one!
LBC: We're glad you did!
Have you always had a love for books? Have any Favourite books/authors? What's your earliest memory of reading?
DJ: Gosh, yes! I can remember reading way into the night when I was eight or nine under the blankets with one of my dad’s huge torches.
I loved all the girlie comics first and then moved on to devour all the Enid Blyton books I could get my hands on, before moving on to Agatha Christie - that kept me occupied for years.
Favourite books? Strangely my favourite genre is Travel memoir - for some strange reason I adore reading about people who have lunged into an adventure in another country, their trials and tribulations as they come. to terms with the language, the people, the customs and the property renovations.
I’ve just finished ‘Under TheRipening Sun’ by Patricia Atkinson - what a courageous woman to take on a dilapidated vineyard single-handedly. And I loved Sarah MacDonald’s ‘Holy Cow’ set in India.
So, The Runaway Bridesmaid is your debut novel, and sounds amazing! Can tell us what it's about?
DJ: Thanks Laura.
It’s the story of Rosie who squeezes herself into a frothy, flouncy, bubble-gum pink dress, for her spoilt little sister Freya. But minutes before the wedding she discovers her boyfriend with the bride and it’s the icing on the sequinned wedding cake. She packs her bags and flies off to Devon where she swaps her Louboutins for wellies and discovers her Aunt’s ancient recipe book - Bake Yourself Better and decides to experiment, beginning with ‘Strawberry Tarts for Broken Hearts’ moving on to ‘Fig Delights for Passion-filled Nights’.
The book includes all the recipes too.
LBC: Can't go wrong with some recipes! Where did your inspiration for the book come from then?
DJ: Ah, my inspiration?
At the start of the book Rosie lives in New York and is married to her career. My husband arranged a surprise trip to New York for a’ milestone’ birthday in October 2012. Unfortunately, whilst we were there Hurricane Sandy hit Manhattan and the surrounding areas and we were stranded for eleven days. It was a scary experience, but a germ of an idea formed in my mind which ultimately became The Runaway Bridesmaid
LBC: Sounds good, minus the hurricane!
So we know what the books about and where you got the idea, how did you become about actually writing it? What's your writing process like? Did you plot chapter by chapter?
DJ: I’m definitely a plotter. I like to have an idea before I start a book, what the main character’s path will be and where she will end up (and who with). Unfortunately, I also need to write my novel with pen and paper- which takes ages, but I seem to be more creative with the long-hand version than typing straight onto the screen. I love buying stationery - lovely notebooks to write in are piled on my desk for inspiration.
LBC: So we've another Jill Mansell in the making then ;-)
Do you have a favourite chapter /part you particularly enjoyed writing?
DJ: I’m so glad you asked this! Yes! Yes! Yes! I adore baking - cupcakes, biscuits, scones, flapjacks, rock buns, chocolate brownies, shortbread….well, I’m sure you get the idea.
There are recipes (with a twist) throughout the novel which I’ve triple-tested and my family have taste-tested - much to their delight!
LBC: Yum, yum, yum!!
Characters always fascinate me, how did you come up with yours and their names? Are you like any of them?
DJ: Rosie just came to me fully formed. I love her and her quirkiness.
But you’ve hit a button with the question on names - I really spend lots of time coming up with the names. I just don’t seem to get them right first time and even when I’m happy with the first names there’s their surnames to think of, aghhh.
One novel I wrote - well, it wasn’t until the end that I realised all the names either rhymed or started with the same first letter. I’ve even asked for Facebook Friends to submit ideas for characters to help out.
LBC: Rhyming names could be interesting!
So if you were locked in a room for 24 hours with one of the characters, who would you pick and why?!
DJ: Gosh, I think anyone who reads The Runaway Bridesmaid will pick the same as me! Charlie! He’s my idea of a fun date. He has dark tumbling curls and a quirky sense of humour. I’d love to hear what your blog readers think!
LBC: Quick fire round ;-)
Paper/hardback or Kindle? All 3 - it's the content that counts!
Sweet or savoury? Sweet - with chocolate in there... Or edible glitter... Or buttercream....
Night In or Evening Out? Evening Out - I love going to the cinema and will watch a.most anything (except horror, can't do that genre)
Summer or winter? Summer - I'm definitely a sunshine girl, my birthday is July so that may have something to do with it, plus I prefer sandals to boots!
Birthdays or Christmas? Ooh can't I have both?! I love celebrations, any excuse will do - because they usually involve cake!!
Pen/paper or computer? 100% pen/paper
LBC: Daisy, Thank you again for joining me today and answering the questions. Before you go, please tell us how can readers read your book and stay in touch with you?
DJ: Thanks so much for having me, Laura. I’d love to hear if any of your readers have tried out Rosie’s recipes - and any photos would be awesome.
Here’s my Buy Link -
Here’s my Facebook link
And twitter link