1. Welcome Ali and Ros to the RWA Author Spotlight! Can you give us an overview of what your novel, SISTER PACT is about?
Two very different sisters, estranged for seven years, forced to play nice on a Survivor-esque reality TV show to inherit an obscene amount of money from their grandmother’s will. There’s jungle. There’s humiliating challenges. There’s a ferret called Des.
And a little bit of romance along the way.
Sister Pact is IN HER SHOES meets DEAD FAMOUS. It will appeal to all women who love to laugh and cry in the same book, and who realise that only those who know you well can hurt you like you never imagined. And to everyone who likes a really happy ending.
2. This story is about sisters, and is written by sisters… how did you go about the process of writing a story together and deciding who does what?
Once we’d decided on the premise and that we would each write one POV character, the process was relatively easy thanks to the magic of email. Ros wrote a chapter. Ali wrote a chapter. And on and on.
Having that new chapter ping into your inbox was always exciting!
3. Can you give us a sneak peek from your book, maybe a brief excerpt from a favourite scene, or the first sentence?
To give everyone a taste of the two sisters I’ve included the opening paragraph for both.
Joni Tripton reached for the locket that hung reliably at her neck and crossed herself. Then she sent up a swift and silent prayer to any deities generous enough to ignore the sacrilegious streak that had seen her kicked out of Sister Mary Magdalene’s School for Gifted Teenagers over a decade ago. And almost every institution she’d been dragged, cajoled or stumbled into by accident ever since.
Frances Sutcliffe was cutting the heads off twelve perfectly formed long-stemmed roses when the knocking started again. She ignored it, preferring to pretend she was castrating Edward with every satisfying snip.
Her husband had always had enough balls for several men.
4. What do you love most about being an author?
Ali – those days when the magic is happening and the words are flowing faster than you can get them down. And being able to legitimately claim pyjamas as work clothes.
Ros – like Ali, when you get in The Zone and realise three hours have passed without you even noticing. And getting that book in the mail, seeing your name on the cover and feeling like every childhood fantasy just came true.
5. How important do you think it is for authors to be actively engaged in self promotion?
I think these days self-promotion is a necessary evil. And if I just had another hour in my day it would make if a hell of a lot easier!
6. Who are some of your favourite authors?
Ali – Jenny Crusie, SEP, Janet Evanovich, Rachel Gibson. Two of my fav category authors are Kelly Hunter and Sarah Mayberry – I want to be them when I grow up!
Ros – Nora Roberts (for characters you lose yourself in), Charlaine Harris (for pure indulgent escapism and making me break my rule about vampire books/films), Kate Morton (for delicious phrases, spine-tingly plots and having the good sense to live in Brisbane).
7. Complete this sentence: When I’m not writing, I’m…
Ali – thinking I should be writing.
(a) Experiencing generalised guilt about something I’m sure I should be doing but forgot OR
(b) Running around yelling “get your shoes on!” or “why didn’t you say you needed a tree costume last night?” while applying mascara and looking for a lost library book OR
(c) Holding a paper bag to my face and taking really deep breaths.
8. What advice would you give to aspiring authors out there?
Ali – Never. Give. Up. Learn your craft. Grow. Hone. Develop your voice. Don’t listen to the naysayers.
Ros – Realise there really isn’t some magical something that published authors have that you don’t.
9. What’s next for you both? Do you plan on writing more stories together in future?
Ali – We’ve just completed the second Frances and Joni story where Frances is kidnapped by a cult and Joni comes to the rescue. I’m working on my next Medical and RIVA and I’m also working on a romance for Entangled which is scheduled for an August release.
Ros – Maternity leave from my day job – baby number four. And working on some revisions on a single title manuscript that I’ve had some great feedback on from our publisher.
To WIN a signed copy of SISTER PACT (Worldwide Giveaway!!), comment below and answer one of the following questions:
1. Which two authors would you like to see write a book together?
2. If you could co-author a book with any author in the world, who would you choose?
*Winner will be announced on Monday 28th May, and will have one week to respond to the email notification or another winner will be chosen. Good luck!
~ Ali and Ros are sisters who are as close as they are different. Ali married the first boy she ever loved. Ros tried to remember the name of hers the other day and gave up and had a chocolate bar instead. Ali thinks everything will work out. Ros thinks everything will get found out. But for all their differences, they are fiercely close and desperately proud of each other. Nothing feels real until it has been spoken aloud to the other. They both love to talk, laugh and write preferably over a bottle of bubbly and something coated in chocolate. They live in Brisbane.