We welcome today Glenda Young, Glenda what was the inspiration behind your book? Can you tell us a little about it?
Murder at the Seaview Hotel is a fun, cosy crime set in a B&B in the seaside town of Scarborough on the Yorkshire coast. It stars a troupe of 12 Elvis impersonators, called Twelvis. When one of them ends up murdered with his blue suede shoes stolen, Helen Dexter, landlady of the Seaview Hotel is on the case to solve the crime.
I was inspired to write this book as I adore Scarborough, it’s my happy place, and I’ve always wanted to set a novel there. Reviewers say that the sense of place in the novel is so strong, that people who haven’t visited Scarborough before now want to go… this makes me very happy! Headline loved the book and offered me a three-book deal. This means Murder at the Seaview Hotel will be the first in a series of three cosy crimes set in Scarborough with the fabulous Helen Dexter solving crimes while running her B&B.
And here is a very short teaser video on YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZNhrl3CgyYc&feature=emb_logo&ab_channel=GlendaYoung
What is your writing day like?
I write at least for four days a week. I get up early, write for two to three hours and always try to do 2,000 words. I’m very lucky that I live by the sea so once my work for the day is done, I walk on the beach or go for a bike ride to clear my head.
What kind of research did you do before beginning the book?
Murder at the Seaview Hotel was written last year in lockdown when there was nowhere to go and nothing to do but stay home and write. This meant I couldn’t visit Scarborough to do my research. I had to rely on websites and tourist information sent to me from the town. It was wonderful though, and really stretched my imagination. I know the place so well, I really love it, that it was great to escape mentally if not physically to my happy place during the months I was writing the book.
I also bought books on Elvis Presley from eBay to get me in the right mood for writing about 12 Elvis impersonators. Every morning before writing, I listened to an Elvis song on YouTube to set the tone for each chapter. I also interviewed an Elvis impersonator, which was great fun and he was very helpful.
I’ve created playlists to listen to when you read the book as each chapter was inspired by Elvis songs. There are 45 Elvis songs on the playlist, to correspond with each chapter in the book. Here is the playlist on Spotify And here is the playlist on YouTube
What was your journey to publication?
I’ve always loved writing, ever since I was a child. As a very mature student in my late 30s I studied journalism at Sunderland University and went on to write TV tie-in books for ITV about the soap opera Coronation Street. I’m a huge fan of the show and it was an honour to write these books but I was aware I was retelling other people’s stories. I hadn’t created fantastic women like Ena Sharples and Elsie Tanner, they had sprung from someone else’s creative mind. I longed to create my own wonderful female heroines and about seven years ago, I decided to start writing short fiction. I was published in many womens’ magazines and won short story competitions too.
Then in 2016 The People’s Friend magazine asked me to write their first weekly soap opera, it’s called Riverside. It’s an absolute joy to write, my writing highlight of the week as it’s fresh, funny and I adore it.
From Riverside, I was signed up by a literary agent and began writing my debut novel Belle of the Back Streets, a gritty saga set in 1919 in the northeast village I grew up in. Three publishers were fighting for the rights to publish it, I couldn’t believe it! I chose Headline and have been writing best-selling sagas, and now cosy crimes, with Headline for a few years.
Who were your favourite childhood authors?
Agatha Christie, Enid Blyton and I adored the Nancy Drew series of books by Carolyn Keen.
What advice would you give to aspiring authors?
Never give up. Never. I am living, breathing, proof of that. If I can do it, you can too. Believe in yourself, if you know you’ve got it in you to be a writer, keep on writing. Honestly, I can’t say it enough. NEVER GIVE UP.
Can you tell us what you are working on now?
Ooh, I’d love to, thank you for asking! I’ve just finished writing the second cosy crime set in Scarborough. It’s called Curtain Call at the Seaview Hotel and once again stars the wonderful sleuth and B&B landlady Helen Dexter. This time, a theatrical group stay at the Seaview Hotel but the leading lady gets murdered and Helen has to solve the crime. I now plan to take a month away from writing and have a breather before starting to research my next historical saga set in 1919.
Glenda Young writes gritty sagas set in a northeast mining village in 1919 and cosy crimes set in modern-day Scarborough. She is published by Headline. She has also written TV tie-in books for ITV’s Coronation Street and is an award-winning short story writer. She was one of six finalists in the coveted Clement & Le Frenais comedy award in 2019. Glenda also has a unique claim to fame, she’s the writer of Riverside, a weekly soap opera published in The People’s Friend magazine since 2016.
Glenda’s website is http://glendayoungbooks.com
Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/flaming_nora
Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/GlendaYoungAuthor
About the interviewer.
Catherine Lawless lives in Hertfordshire with her husband, daughter and their three border terriers. She writes novels, journals and children’s books. Catherine’s career started out as a singer/songwriter in a rock band. She toured extensively throughout Europe and the UK before settling down and following her childhood dream of writing books.