Tuesday, July 15, 2014

5W's of Julie Ryan

This is the second book in the Greek Island Mystery series.  Although each book is intended to be read as a standalone, some of the characters from the first book, ‘Jennas’s Journey’, do make an appearance.
Kat has never understood why she was sent at the age of seven from Greece to live in England with her Aunt Tigi. When she receives an email from her grandmother, the first contact in over twenty years, informing her of her mother’s death, she knows this could be her last chance to find out the truth. Little by little she finds out the shocking facts as her grandmother opens her heart.  It seems everyone has a secret to tell, not only her grandmother, as Manoli, her school friend, also harbours a guilty secret. Then there’s a twenty year old mystery to solve as well as a murder and what happened to the missing Church treasure?

Julie was born and brought up in a mining village near Barnsley in South Yorkshire. She graduated with a BA (hons) in French Language and Literature from Hull University. Since then she has lived and worked as a Teacher of English as a Foreign Language in France, Greece, Poland and Thailand. She now lives in rural Gloucestershire with her husband, son and a dippy cat with half a tail.  She is so passionate about books that her collection is now threatening to outgrow her house, much to her husband’s annoyance!

WHAT?  What do you enjoy doing other than writing in your spare time?
Obviously writing takes up a large part of my time and when I’m not writing I’m usually thinking about ideas for writing. You get my drift? However, for something completely different, I’m a member of our local amateur dramatic society where I enjoy treading the boards. Each year we produce a pantomime and in the last one I played Sleeping Beauty’s mother. I also go into my son’s school one afternoon a week to listen to the children read. I get a real feeling of satisfaction knowing that I’m helping to develop a love of something that is very close to my heart.

WHEN?  When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
I suppose I was about seven or eight when I realized that I enjoyed writing stories. To be honest, though, I never thought that I would write a novel or that people outside my family would enjoy reading it. There was a long gap when life and work just seemed to get in the way so I’m very grateful that I have the opportunity to write at this stage in my life. The desire to write has always been there, I think, I just suppressed it for a long time and now I’m making up for the wasted years. It still seems a little odd though to refer to myself as a writer – I love it but it takes some getting used to.

WHERE?  Where do you write?
Mostly at the table in the dining room, which has a view over the garden. I’m not particular about where I write though and if the muse calls then I have been known to write anywhere and on anything; hence the large number of bits of paper and torn envelopes scattered around the house. I did try to get organized and I bought a lovely Scandinavian style desk but at the moment it’s still in the box until we get the room that I like to call the study decorated. The renovations have been ongoing for almost ten years now but that’s another story.

WHY?  Why do you write?
That’s a good question. I suppose I write because I enjoy it but now I’ve got the bug and I just can’t imagine not writing. The fact that there are readers who actually enjoy what I write is the icing on the cake. I’d probably still write even if nobody ever read it though!

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