Good Morning Friends. Today I have turned the blog over to popular Lesfic author, Linda Bates. She is here discussing interesting things from her life. Come on and bring your friends and join us. You are going to love this woman. I have included the link to my review for It Drew Pale. Be sure to check it out. Now let’s introduce Linda Bates!
Click hyperlink for It Drew Pale review.
Hi! I’m Linda Bates, and I live and work in the north of the UK. It’s a very beautiful, and sought-after destination for outdoor enthusiasts, and was once voted the best place in England to bring your little ones. It offers some breath-taking mountains with, in my opinion, the best lakes in the world in its hidden valley’s. I guess that is why it is called the Lake District. I love to walk the fells in the summer. My days of traversing Scafell Pike, and the sister hills, in winter are past, but I still enjoy a good wander in the wildernesses around where I live.
I’m originally from Yorkshire, but I travelled the world a little, and lived at one point in a part of war-torn Africa, dodging mortars and automatic machine gun bullets. I know what it is like growing up in the middle of political conflict, and how easy it is for someone in the western world to form opinions based on biased reporting. It’s much like in the old American West, where some of my historical books have their foundation.
I have a third Western in the making, already having ‘American Dream’ and It Drew Pale out in print. It Drew Pale was already written, or half written, when I decided to self-publish. It has all the olde worlde charm of a good western, with gritty, female characters who can live in a world without men doing it for them. Something I noticed in my halcyon days of youth in all the John Ford Westerns was the predominant male adventurer, always getting the girl. This is what spurred me on – to coin a phrase – to writing about women finally being ramrod and turning the tables on male dominance. I love that woman gets woman, and so I wrote books I wanted to see on the market. In my younger days, there was little lesbian literature. Now there’s a lot more. I did not publish my books then. I waited a bit longer. Imagine a world without ePub? LOL.
I was studying some book designs for It Drew Pale, and came up with the hat on a boot. It was cutesy and tongue-in-cheek, so I placed it inside a light blue background, and came up with a typical western theme, but with an amusing twist. I like to think my westerns, although seriously considered, are mostly for amusement, and full of gentle persuasion. I let it loose, born out of American Dream. Jack is a character full of charm, romantic notions, but a hard edge of pure grit most girls are aware they have, yet are loathe at times to explore.
When I am not working on books, I am writing for the local newspaper, or editing works people send to me. I had a book signing recently at our local library which was a fun and learning experience for me. It was lovely to talk about my books and to express to others the reasons why I write the way I do. I’m what is commonly termed ‘a driven writer’. I was passively unaware of the title, of course, as one thinks of oneself as an individual, but if the cap fits, as they say…
If I am not doing all those other things, I am keeping house and home together, and I live with my partner and two cats. I wrote about my rescue kitties, too, but I chose to go paper copy with my affectionately termed ‘kitty book’ “Two Tuxedos and Five Peas on a Plate”. It is only available through me, or the British Library, who now own five copies of the original script, officially! I may release this, too, in eBook format, but not yet. I want to keep it to myself for a while longer – writers will understand that bit!
I laugh at New Year Resolution time! It’s a difficult one. Once you have made a resolution, you are duty bound to stick to it, or feel a failure if you don’t. I don’t commit that easily any more. I realise the trait of human frailty. It’s a burden on your already stretched resources to act a certain way, probably driven by fashion or tradition, I would say. If you are going to promise something, be careful what you promise – remember John’s head on a platter, because a certain king promised to deliver before he realised what was at stake? It’s okay to make resolutions if you have a personal goal that is achievable, but making promises you can’t keep is wearisome; and almost always leads you down the same old road of broken and shattered dreams; the non-American kind.
I broke with tradition a few Christmases ago. This was mainly due to dietary constraints, and the need to have something a little lighter after all that gorging on turkey! I like to have Eton Mess as an alternative. It is decadent, full of whipped, fresh Devon cream, yet it is lighter than the trad-Xmas pudding. All the stodge, larger portions, are all synonymous to the season, but I realised that although I was making a Christmas Pudding, I was not eating it. And this is how it went…
…I was away, visiting friends and family, staying in a beautiful mansion, now converted into a chain hotel I like, when I spotted the dish on the menu. It’s a relatively old concept in the South of England, hence its name originates from one of the most prestigious learning establishments in the world, Eton. I decided to recreate the decadence for Christmas. Like I said, it is made with fresh, Devon cream, crushed meringue, and strawberries. I like to make a jus of fresh berries for garnish, too, and a little finely grated chocolate on top. It is delicious, and I urge anyone who has had to eat Christmas Pudding after eating a full roast dinner, to partake of Eton Mess, instead. It’s lighter, but still has that British snobbery, and little naughtiness about it.
Lynn, you asked me about my favourite place in Yorkshire. There are many lovely places within the Shire. The people are great, friendly, and the accent has a low cadence that does not grate on your nerves. For many reasons, the west coast around Robin Hood’s Bay is a delightfully British sea village idyll; given the location is a little more remote, and the atmosphere has an artsy feel: An ideal place to paint, draw, sculpt, write or do anything your creative brain challenges you to do.
But, in contrast, I also enjoy Whitby on a day visit, because of its busy sea port charm, and the many fish and chip shops dotted around the inlet. People can visit the Abbey, made more famous by those Dracula books, and of course some of the credit for inspiring me to write Everlusting Love! But I adore all of Yorkshire. In fact, I am due a visit there later in the Spring. There’s a massive Literature Festival in York spanning over three weeks that is a must for authors of every genre. York is home to York Minster, of course, a place where I go to worship, being CofE, but it also houses some of the finest art and historical artefacts within its veritable, revered fortifications that the world has ever seen. The City suffered floods in 2015, that devastated much of the foundations of York, and the surviving ancient buildings. Now, gladly, all is recovered, and the Jarvik Centre, of archaeological importance because of its complete Viking encampment, will again open its doors to the public for the first time since renovations began soon after the water level receded. That is down in greatest part to the determination, stamina, fundraising acumen and community spirit of the Yorkshire people.
And talking of determination and stamina, I move with a little spring in my step to my favourite sport of all time. You already know me to be an avid American Football fan, don’t you? I don my Green Bay Packer garb every time I can. Usually when there is a game showing on Brit TV! It’s cheesy, I know, but I have loved the sport, and the team, since it was shown on C4 back in the 80’s. I went over to Arizona some time back, visiting friends, and making great new ones. One of those new pals, a great lady, who was once a model, and retired – though you wouldn’t know it from the active life she still leads – gave me some much-needed time out, switched her TV on in the middle of a party, sat me down with some popcorn and cola, to watch the Arizona Cardinals play live! I was in seventh heaven!
Lynn, it was the best holiday I had had up to that point, and I still keep in touch with many there as a result of the many parties I was invited to, and the fun times I had swimming or playing pickle ball with some very spritely 70 year olds who certainly gave me a run for my money! I’d give anything to return to America, and maybe some day I will.
You asked me if I found a four-leaf clover whether I would wish on it? The answer is – NO! I would give the wish to my best friend, who needs it more than I do.
My last LGBTQ lesfic book I read? That would be telling! I love them all, because I happen to think that lesfic as a genre is grossly misrepresented, or barely noticed by literary giants the world over. It is important to get our own stories out there the whole time we are alive, because we all have a voice. Some people see writing as a competition. It is. But not the competition that is destructive and beating a drum against the next LGBTQ wannabee. It is about submitting alternative viewpoints that matter. Like in the days of Hitler, and the burning of ‘other’ literature that did not support a particular regime, it’s about recognition of literature well written. And we all need, as a people, to be together in promoting our work as a body of inclusivity.
I don’t listen to music when I am writing. I have complete, or relatively complete silence when I write. I have a rough timeline in which I scribble down anything and everything, and I take that timeline seriously. Anyone who interrupts my creative time can come under serious fire! I’m affable, friendly, approachable, but not when I have deadline. Then, I am focused and exclusively so.
Lynn, I could ask you what is the best part you enjoy when interviewing authors, because I find your job fascinating. You find authors of this life, and meet several intelligent, imaginative and creative people all the time. I don’t have the privilege to meet with my artist friends, since my work keeps me glued mostly to my screen. But what I do enjoy is writing itself, and I guess that is the given. Writing is what I do – it is intrinsic to my well-being. The least favourite thing about being an author out of the many hats one has to don to be an author in the 21st Century is promotion. I’m not ideally suited to plugging my wares. I was terrible at selling myself! I had to grit my teeth and bite the bullet, and I pulled that hat well down over my ears to perform a necessary duty I was ill-equipped to deal with. I have learned to cope with the media over the years, and I took all the tutorials I could to keep up with today’s technology. I keep on learning, and that is something everyone can relate to. If you stop learning, start ignoring the technological advancements, within a year you could find yourself dead in the water. You must need to paddle with the right gear, or drown! It’s survival, but it is fun when you are at the top of your game – I have yet to reach my very own Utopia, but thankfully, with God’s help and your support, I can!
You must excuse me, Lynn and Co, but I must love you and leave you now, since I have twelve children’s books to introduce, and a great story about a woman called Carol who’s finding life a little bit difficult on the edge of rationale! Hope you can join me on Facebook or Twitter, and can find some great giveaways when you sign up for my free newsletters. It was great meeting with you again, Lynn. Have a great year with your partner; and my cats say a big HI to your kitties, too.
Thank you, Linda, for stopping by to chat. Before you go be sure to check out Linda’s links:
Until next time,
Like me/Friend me on Facebook:
Follow me on Twitter:
Follow me on Instagram:
Follow me on Google Plus:
Follow me on LinkedIn:
Follow me on Tumblr:
Sign up for my blog:
Photos subject to copyright.
Printed with Permission.