Annie Lyons has stopped by this week to celebrate the release of her fifth novel, The Choir on Hope Street. This is Annie’s first visit to the blog and I’m pleased to have her here today. In the past we have reviewed some of her books including the wonderful A Not Quite Perfect Christmas that has always been a favourite mine. I can only imagine the inspiration behind this novel, which comes from Annie being an active and very dedicated member of a choir where she gets the opportunity to sing her heart out! Thank you Annie.
What’s your book about?
It’s about two very different women – Natalie and Caroline, who come together to form a community choir when their beloved Hope Street hall is threatened with closure. It’s basically about singing, community, cake and hope!
What inspired the storyline to your novel?
My own wonderful community choir in south-east London. (Churchfields Community Choir)
How long did it take you to write your novel?
About a year from the first idea to final edits.
What did you enjoy most about writing this book?
The singing research!
What did you research the most while writing this book?
I listened to a lot of music for inspiration and tried to find the best songs for the Hope Street choir to sing – you can check them out on this Spotify playlist
What did you do before becoming a writer?
I’ve always worked in books – first as a bookseller and then in publishing.
For those who have not discovered your novel, how would you describe it to them to get them interested?
It’s about singing, cake and hope.
What’s a typical writing day like for you?
I drop my son at school, come home, make a gigantic pot of coffee and write until lunch-time. After that, I catch up on e-mails and social media and them I’m off on the school-run again!
Who’s your favourite character arc of all time, fiction/or onscreen and why?
Probably Walter White in Breaking Bad because he starts off as a pretty ordinary, everyman character and is forced to shift and adapt according to the extraordinary events he faces and creates for himself. He’s the ultimate anti-hero.
What do you think makes the best character arc?
I like it when the character does the opposite of what you expect, taking their story on a completely different path.
Are you working on anything new at the moment?
I’m working on the next Hope Street story featuring three new characters. I’m just getting to know them at the moment, which is often the best bit!
What is the theme or take home message of your book?
You can find often find hope where you least expect it.
Facebook Author Page: www.facebook.com/annielyonswriter
Interview by Anne John-Ligali