Romantic Novelists' Association

Interview With Author Helen C. Kelly

15 December 2023

Welcome to the blog! What was the inspiration behind your book? What prompted you to tell this story? I am inspired by everyday life. I love visiting places and thinking that would be a great place for a getaway for example in my book New Beginnings Creswell Crags  in Worksop, was used as a place where David and Jane go to get away from it all. Which is exactly how I felt when I went to visit it. The same with the village of Greengrove that is made up of various parts of the country all made into a little chocolate box village within my imagination. I wanted to write stories about real people with real problems. I find it is important that there are real people in my books with stretch marks and chicken pox scars rather than perfection. I love writing about strong women.

How long did the book take to write? How much re-writing do you normally do? My first book took three years to right and my second book which was published in June took a year to write. My process is that I write it. Then I read it editing it as I go. Then send it off to be a friend to be read she reads it and suggests edits, I look at it again and will either agree with them or not. I then send it off to be edited by a editor and when I get that back I go through those suggestions. My husband then goes through the book. I then send it back to be re edited and then the last changes are done before it is finally finished.

When did you realise you wanted to be an author? I always wanted to be an author because I loved the idea that books could take you away from where you are and problems that you have to a different place using words and pictures,  but because I struggled with reading and writing when I was younger I didn’t think it was something that I could actually do. When I was diagnosed as being dyslexic at 29 suddenly my world opened up and I began to understand that I could read proper books and understand them and this re awakened my desire to want to be an author. It took a while before I had the confidence to actually write my first book and self publish it and I still cant believe that I am an author.

Who were your favourite childhood authors? I loved Topsy and Tim books by Jean and Gareth Adamson. I still have all my old books and if I ever see and old copies that I don’t have I buy them to complete my collection. I also loved Jill Murphy the worst which and Charles Dickens Oliver Twist.

If you could give your younger writing self any advice, what would it be? Write for yourself it doesn’t have to be perfect it is for you and keep everything because when you are older you can look back and look at the things you wrote and be proud of them as everything was an achievement.

What advice would you give to aspiring authors? Research is so important so many people think that they can write a book and they will suddenly become a best seller but they are forgetting that writing the book is only the first part of the journey you have to get the published, marketed and you have to work really hard to get word out about your book but to start off you have to research where your book will fit in, how will you start on your journey, how are you going to publish your book. All these are questions that you need to research the answers to because its not as easy as writing the book and instant fame.

Can you tell us what you are working on now? I am currently working on book three of the Greengrove series which is called Hold Me which will hopefully be out early next year. This book centres on two more of the village residents Connor and Dawn. Connor is the local policeman and has known Dawn since they were both in school. Connor has recently returned to the local police station as a police inspector after a promotion but his mum has always lived in the village so he didn’t really move away. Dawn has lived in the village all her life and has a twin sister Debbie who when she was younger had a crush on Connor. Connor and Dawn started to meet up at a local choir practice that both of them were persuaded to go but it’s not a smooth journey for both of them.

About the Author

Author Helen Kelly, brown/blonde long hair, glasses, red and white shirt withblue cardigan, leaning against colourful wallHelen is a mother of two grown up daughters living in the North Yorkshire. History and research has always been something she has loved and has three master’s degrees in History which she did later in life. She has always wanted to write but due to being diagnosed as being dyslexic later in life she always thought it was something she couldn’t do but she is proving herself wrong. Along with reading, Helen loves visiting many different places in the United Kingdom especially if they have canals or waterfalls.

A Special Place

New Beginnings