Here at Olympia we love hearing from our authors, getting an insight into their lives in writing and asking them what their advice would be to future authors. This week we had the pleasure of interviewing Kim Rowell about her book.
1. How old were you when you first wrote something substantial?
I loved writing when I was at junior school, I remember composing a piece about gnomes for the local gnome reserve when I was around 5 or 6 years old, and an Arts Centre in the town where I grew up put it in their newsletter – I couldn’t have been prouder! I also remember a time when we were asked to do a creative writing piece in Year 5, so I would have been 7 or 8 years old, and the teacher laughed at me when I handed her my story – I’d written it on a new typewriter that my mum had saved very hard to buy for me, and there was reams and reams of it – so much so that the teacher ended up reading it to the rest of the class at storytime for the rest of the week; I was a little bit mortified and a little bit chuffed at the same time.
2. Did you ever have aspirations to become a writer?
I was quite strong at English Language and Literature, particularly at college, but I don’t think I ever really considered venturing down the avenue of solely being a writer, it was more something that I liked to explore and indulge in in my spare time – I found it a brilliant form of escapism.
3. What is the best piece of advice you’ve received?
You’ve got to start somewhere! This applies to all kinds of creativity in my opinion, my Art teacher at school used to respond to children moaning that they “couldn’t do it” by coming over and just simply making a mark on the page. Get going, some days your creative juices will be stronger than others, but you can always edit and revise – make your mark.
4. What advice would you give to an aspiring writer?
When you’ve started a project try and maintain a level of discipline to complete it and allow it to completely come to fruition. It’s easy to get distracted, get out of a habit and let things fall by the wayside – anything worth doing is never going to be easy, try your very best to remain dedicated and focused, and I’ve no doubt that you’ll thank yourself for it later.
5. What did you find easiest and hardest about writing?
Evolving and solidifying the concept and idea into something tangible was definitely the hardest part – knowing where to start essentially! But once I got going all the ideas seemed to naturally fall into place in my mind.
I’m not entirely sure that there is an ‘easy’ part, but it’s lovely and enormously satisfying to review the finished product and that’s a definite motivating factor.
6. Was it faster to write your book or to have it published?
Townie Spider is a short rhyming tale, so it was much quicker to write than to have it published. I’ve finished a few more Townie stories since however, so the process is ongoing.
7. What was your favourite part of your book to write?
I themed the story around introducing issues of friendship, kindness and mental health to children about to start school; and it was a lot of fun coming up with simple day-to-day animal actions that can assist in framing these ideas.
8. Do you have any plans to publish more work?
I’d love to, I do have a few more Townie ideas written, as well as having started work on an advisory piece for career women.
9. If you could review Olympia Publishers in just a few words, what would they be?
I’m grateful to Olympia for supporting and guiding me through a process that I had very little prior knowledge of. It’s been an enlightening, exciting and rewarding process unleashing Townie Spider to the world.