It’s TV, but not as I knew it

Reporting the old fashioned way – I was so very young!

I started my writing career as a TV journalist at Channel 7 in Brisbane, Australia in 19… umm. Let’s not go there. Let’s just say I was a teenager and leave it at that. My first TV interview involved a big camera and a large hand-held microphone. There were lights and sometimes a person whose job it was just to check the sound. For those interviews, I was behind the microphone asking questions.

A few days ago, for my most recent interview, I was in front of the camera answering questions. As for the way it was done, it was so far from those early TV jobs that it was like being in another world.

We were in the offices of my publisher, Harper Collins in London talking about The Heights. I wrote this book (or rather half of it) with my friend and fellow writer Alison May. We set up for the interview with – a phone and a lap top. The phone was attached to a tiny tripod that sat on a coffee table. Our ‘studio crew’ of two manned the laptops to live stream the interview on the Harper Collins Facebook Page and feed back questions from the live audience.

I remember my first live broadcast back in my TV days – it involved half a day of setting up, a large truck with a satellite dish on the roof. There was at least one technician with me and my camera crew, and many more back at the TV station. How things have changed.

With editor Clio Cornish, Alison May and my new red hair just before the interview started.

I loved doing this Facebook live. We talked about how to write together, about books and the Bronte sisters. There was some discussion of actors who might play our characters, and pizza got several mentions. The star of the show was undoubtedly the point of view spreadsheet that guided the writing of The Heights.

The famous POV spreadsheet.

The Interview still available to view here. Pop over if you have a second. Alison and I are still answering questions left in the comments.

Regular readers know I am a bit of a geek – and I just love how much technology has changed over the years. It makes it so much easier to talk with readers and other writers and you gotta love that.

We laughed a lot during the interview – another thing that was new to the serious journalist in me.

 

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Cause for celebration

There’s been some very good news for the Take Five Authors team – Janet and Sue are both shortlisted for the Romantic Novel of the year awards, presented by the Romantic Novelists’ association here in the UK.

Both are very pleased to finally be able to talk about it here…

Janet says:

I’m not ashamed to say I got more than a little misty when I got the email saying that Wedding Bells By The Creek was shortlisted for the RoNA Rose Award. Keeping it under my hat all this time has been really tough. I wanted to shout it from the rooftops. Last year, my novel Little Girl Lost won the Epic Romantic Novel of the Year award and to have this novella that follows it also shortlisted (in a different category) is just more than I could ever have hoped for.

There are some of my favourite authors on this year’s shortlists, and luckily Sue and I are in different categories. Please keep your fingers crossed for both of us please. But whoever takes home the award, I already feel like a winner.

Here is the full shortlist for the RoNA ROSE Award

RONA Rose for shorter romantic novels

  • The Convenient Felstone Marriage, Jenni Fletcher, Harlequin Mills & Boon Historical
  • Wedding Bells by the Creek, Janet Gover, independently published
  • Their Double Baby Gift, Louisa Heaton, Harlequin Mills & Boon Medical
  • Christmas at the Little Village School, Jane Lovering, Choc Lit
  • The Mysterious Italian Houseguest, Scarlet Wilson, Harlequin Mills & Boon

And Sue says:

I can’t tell you how pleased and proud I am to see Just for the Holidays shortlisted in the Contemporary category of the Romantic Novel of the Year Awards. I’ve known since November, under strict embargo, and I’ve wanted to explode with joy ever since. Now I’ve seen the formidable competition on the shortlist I’m thrilled to be included … but I’m also feeling realistic about my chances of winning and going through to the overall prize of £5000.

The award ceremony will take place on the 5th of March in London at the Gladstone Library so I have the perfect excuse for a new dress to go with the frivolous boots and handbag I bought late last year to celebrate becoming a Sunday Times best-selling author. You can see a theme developing here, can’t you? Good news equals pretty clothes or accessories! This is only the second time one of my books has been shortlisted for a ‘RoNA’, so I’m making the most of it.

Here is the full Contemporary shortlist:

  • Together, Julie Cohen, Orion
  • The Picture House by the Sea, Holly Hepburn, Simon & Schuster
  • The Keeper of Lost Things, Ruth Hogan, Two Roads, John Murray Press
  • The Dangers of Family Secrets, Debby Holt, Accent Press
  • The Queen of Wishful Thinking, Milly Johnson, Simon & Schuster
  • Just For The Holidays, Sue Moorcroft, Avon Books
  • My Summer of Magic Moments, Caroline Roberts, HarperImpulse
  • Coming Home to Cuckoo Cottage, Heidi-Jo Swain, Simon & Schuster

You can read more about the RoNA Awards on the Romantic Novelists’ Association website.