Friday 17 March 2017
Interview with Hemmie Martin
I'm am joined today by the ever lovely, Hemmie Martin. A fellow indie author and crime writer, who's also going to be one of the attending authors at #TheDarkerSideOfFiction2017. Here's a bio about Hemmie.
Hemmie Martin spent most of her professional life as a Community Nurse for people with learning disabilities, a Family Planning Nurse, and a Forensic Mental Health Nurse working with young offenders. She spent six years living in the south of France. She now writes full time. Hemmie created the DI Wednesday series, featuring DI Eva Wednesday and DS Jacob Lennox, set in and around Cambridge, with fictional villages. There are four books in the series so far.
Hemmie has also written a psychological thriller, Attic of the Mind, and two contemporary women's fiction, The Divine Pumpkin and Garlic & Gauloises. Mental health often features in her novels due to her background of forensic mental health nursing. Hemmie is a member of The Crime Writer's Association.
And onto the interview!
1) What kind of books do you read for pleasure?
I looked around at the book cases and shelves dotted around the house and decided that I needed to condense my choices, otherwise the entire interview would be taken up by this one question! The three books on top of my enormous tbr pile sitting next to my chair are The Day That Never Comes by Caimh McDonnell, The Museum of You by Carys Bray, and A Suitable Lie by Michael J Malone. Authors I have already and continue to enjoy are Anita Brookner, Elly Griffiths, Ann Tyler, Maggie O’Farrell, and Amanda Jennings. Staples have always been Agatha Christie, Ian Rankin, and PD James. I love contemporary women’s fiction and crime novels.
2) Do you have a playlist when you write, or do you prefer silence?
Silence is always wonderful especially when plotting a novel, and writing mind maps spanning the character’s traits and interactions. However, as silence can be a rare commodity in this house, I like to listen to music without lyrics, as I find them distracting. My laptop is loaded with Chopin’s piano concertos, Irish folk music, and Sounds of the Sea. All of these add a soothing backdrop to creativity. When I’m editing I listen to a range of artists, including, Hozier, Green Day, Adele, The Black Keys, and Alice Cooper. My mood and what I’m writing dictate what I’m going to listen to, unless I’m lucky enough to have an empty house!
3) Do you have any hobbies?
I attend weekly yoga classes, and go to the gym and swimming twice a week. As much of my time is spent sitting at home, I want to exercise my body which in turn stimulates my creativity, especially yoga as it calms my mind so I can push through whatever difficulty has cropped up in the writing arena.
4) What is your favourite scene to write?
When I’m writing crime, I love writing aggressive scenes, whether it be a fight or a verbal outburst. I am not a physically aggressive person in real life, so I love experiencing it through writing. When I’m writing a contemporary novel, I love writing scenes where a character has an emotional melt-down, where negative feelings gnaw at their soul. Angst and despair are a joy to write, for me.
5) Why did you chose the genres you write?
My background is in learning disabilities and forensic mental health nursing, so I have a deep interest in these topics. All of my novels, even the crime ones, feature mental health issues in some form or another, and I’ve just finished another novel featuring a boy with Down’s syndrome. I also enjoy researching mental health issues, as things are always changing in this arena, and I don’t know everything about it, so the research is fascinating, but sometimes distracting too!
6) Do you prefer to type or hand write?
I have tried both ways, but currently I’m preferring to hand write first, so I can sit by a lake with my hubs as he fishes, and then when I type it up it’s like doing a first round of editing at the same time.
7) Would you ever branch out into other genres?
I once said that I would never write crime or write a series, but then DI Eva Wednesday came along, and I ended up writing four books with her, so far. Having said this, I have quite a dark mind so I don’t think I could write a straight romance novel, but never say never!
You can follow Hemmie on Facebook, Amazon, or Twitter.
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