Book Nerd Interview
Kimberley was born in London and her family moved back to Australia when she was three years old. She grew up in Queensland where she currently lives.
Kimberley has written for as long as she can remember and she is proud to write in many genres. She is an award-winning writer in children’s, historical and speculative fiction under her birth name Kim Wilkins. She adopted the pen name Kimberley Freeman for her commercial women’s fiction novels Duet and Gold Dust to honour her maternal grandmother and to try and capture the spirit of the page-turning novels she has always loved to read. Kim has an Honours degree, a Masters degree and a PhD from The University of Queensland where she is also a lecturer. She lives in Brisbane with her young family.
No, I kind of always knew that's where I wanted to be: in a story somewhere. For me the desire to read stories and make up stories were always the same thing. I wrote my first little "book" at age 5.
Why is storytelling so important for all of us?
It's how we connect and understand human experience different from our own.
Beyond your own work (of course), what is your all-time favorite book and why? And what is your favorite book outside of your genre?
There's not really an "outside" my genre, as I write across a number of genres under my own name as well as under Kimberley Freeman. I love the Walsh sisters books by Marian Keyes, and I love The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley.
What is the best piece of advice you ever received from another author?
Oh, my God there's a gigantic spider above my desk! I'm sorry that's not author advice but I just noticed the spider and it's huuuuuuuuuge. It's a huntsman, which we get here in Queensland, and it's looking at me as I type. And now I'm thinking of my friend Sean Williams who's an author and who hates spiders, so his advice would probably be "don't finish the interview", but I'm going to bravely push on.
Your new book; Ember Island, can you tell my Book Nerd community a little about it?
It's about Tilly, a young woman in the 19th century with a bad temper who winds up involved in a terrible tragedy, and has to run to the other side of the world to escape it. She takes a job as a governess on a prison island in the pacific, and finds the past isn't so easily escaped. Her young student, Nell, is watching her, writing it down, and hiding her notes around the house. More than 100 years later, another character, Nina, finds the diaries and wonders what happened.
For those who are unfamiliar with Tilly, how would you introduce her?
She's got a fiery temper, but wouldn't you if you were a woman with some spirit living in the 19th century?
What are some of your current and future projects that you can share with us?
I've just finished the next Kimberley Freeman book, Evergreen Falls, which is a mystery set in a posh hotel in the mountains in 1926. It's inspired by my grandmother's memoirs.
If you could introduce one of your characters to any character from another book, who would it be and why?
I'd love to introduce Nell to Hermione Grainger. I think they'd get along.
What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating Nina?
My characters don't tend to surprise me. I know them pretty well before I start writing so I don't get any nasty shocks. Like the kind of nasty shock you get when you look up and see a giant spider above your desk.
What’s the best advice you can give writers to help them develop their own unique voice and style?
Write heaps and heaps and heaps and heaps and heaps. Read it back. Find what you like. Try to do more of that.
Where can I readers go to find more about your books and other work?
I have an irregular blog at www.kimberleyfreeman.com. I'm on Twitter as KimberleyTweets, but the best place to find me is my Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/pages/Kimberley-Freeman/157887524286618
1890: Orphaned as a small child, Tilly Kirkland found a loving, safe home with her grandfather in Dorset. But nineteenth-century England is an unforgiving place for a young woman with limited means and as her grandfather's health fails, it seems perfect timing that she meets Jasper Dellafore. Yet her new husband is not all he seems. Alone in the Channel Islands, Tilly finds her dream of a loving marriage is turning into a nightmare.
2012: Bestselling novelist Nina Jones is struggling with writer's block and her disappointing personal life. Nothing is quite working. After a storm damages Starwater, her house on Ember Island, she decides to stay for a while and oversee the repairs: it s a perfect excuse to leave her problems behind her on the mainland. Then Nina discovers diary pages hidden in the walls of the old home. And a mystery unravels that she is determined to solve.
Though the two women are separated by years, Starwater House will alter the course of both their lives. Nina will find that secrets never stay buried and Tilly learns that what matters most is trusting your heart.
*JBN is not responsible for Lost or Damaged Books in your Nerdy Mail*a Rafflecopter giveaway