It’s Friday Night Drinks again and, tonight, I am joined by another busy lady – author, blogger and PR for Bookouture…..Noelle Holten.
Noelle, welcome to the blog and thank you for joining me for drinks this evening. First things first, what are you drinking?
Rhubarb gin & tonic …it might be a double 😉 Though I’ve recently tried pink grapefruit & pomello gin + tonic … *bites nails* so I think I’ll change my order to that!
Sounds delicious. I think your colleague, the lovely Kim Nash, recommended the same one when she were here a couple of weeks ago. Have you two been sharing a tipple of this by any chance? If we weren’t here in my virtual bar tonight, but were meeting in real life, where would you be taking me for a night out?
I’m quite the homebody, but do like a good village pub when socialising so would probably take you to The Rose Inn, in the next village over. They have good food, a nice atmosphere and booze! We could chat books all night!
Perfect! If you could invite two famous people, one male and one female, alive or dead, along on our night out, who would we be drinking with?
Famous as in celebrity or just in my eyes? Hmmm…. I think I’d invite Martina Cole as she’s a good laugh and a font of all knowledge when it comes to books and I’ve recently met Professor David Wilson and he absolutely fascinates me – he so nice and quite funny too – we’d definitely have some interesting conversations!
So, now we’re settled, tell me what you are up to at the moment. What have you got going on? How and why did you start it and where do you want it to go?
At the moment I am nearing 70K on the third book in my series (DC Maggie Jamieson) and I expect to receive the edits for Dead Wrong in the next week or two so will be on to those as well! Book 3 is due Dec 2019 so I needed to get a draft done by at least the end of Oct, and if I continue at the rate I’m at, even with my edits, this should be doable. I’m also winding down on my blog tour commitments. I just can’t keep doing tours and writing – so I’ll still read and review books, I just can’t take part in any tours.
I understand the pressure of blog tours, sometimes you just have to step back from reading to a timetable. I’ve had to do similar in the hope I can get my book finished! What has been your proudest moment since you started writing/blogging and what has been your biggest challenge?
I feel like I have had so many proud moments and no doubt I’ll forget something but here are just a few: getting a two book deal, Dead Inside being published, amazing support from the blogger and crime community, getting a further 3 book deal before Dead Inside was published, being the supporting act via Crime in the Spotlight for Ian Rankin and Nicola Sturgeon at Bloody Scotland, appearing on my first panel at Newcastle Noir, then Bute Noir, and having a paperback launch in Glasgow. Signing MY book! Readings at Noir at the Bar. Knowing that by the end of 2020 I will have written FIVE books! There have been so many moments that I am incredibly proud of and still can’t believe. I am grateful for them all.
You’ve had such an amazing year. What is the one big thing you’d like to achieve in your chosen arena? Be as ambitious as you like, its just us talking after all!
Tough one, as I really am grateful for everything so far – I’d love for the series to take off and to continue writing about Maggie and the rest of the agencies she works with and I would also love to appear on a panel at Bloody Scotland with some of my writing idols!
What are you currently working on that you are really excited about?
I’m writing Book 3 and it’s quite dark – I haven’t come up with the title suggestion yet or a proper blurb but I am loving the direction it is going in and hope that I get it in reasonable order with the edits when I finally type THE END of this draft!
I love to travel, and I’m currently drawing up a bucket list of things I’d like to do in the future. Where is your favourite place that you’ve been and what do you have at the top of your bucket list?
I’ve not really travelled 😱 I mean I have been to various places in the US, Canada, Ireland and the UK but I would LOVE to go to an Island somewhere, total solitude, a beach, a bar, and books. I love Scotland too and hope to one day move there.
I really loved Cape Cod in the US when I visited so I’d also like to go back there and I’ve always wanted to go to Iceland.
Tell me one interesting/surprising/secret fact about yourself that people might not know about you.
Ok – I took music in high-school and played the baritone for 4 years. Not sure if that is interesting/surprising or secret 😂😂 but it is true!
Books are my big passion and central to my blog and I’m always looking for recommendations. What one book would you give me and recommend as a ‘must-read’?
I loved Craig Russell’s The Devil Aspect so would definitely recommend that, but I’ve recently read Michael J Malone’s In The Absence of Miracles, so have to sneak that one it too – both are phenomenal for very different reasons!
How do you find a killer when you’re surrounded by madness?
1935. As Europe prepares itself for a calamitous war, six homicidal lunatics – the so-called ‘Devil’s Six’ – are confined in a remote castle asylum in rural Czechoslovakia. Each patient has their own dark story to tell and Dr Viktor Kosárek, a young psychiatrist using revolutionary techniques, is tasked with unlocking their murderous secrets.
At the same time, a terrifying killer known as ‘Leather Apron’ is butchering victims across Prague. Successfully eluding capture, it would seem his depraved crimes are committed by the Devil himself.
Maybe they are… and what links him with the insane inmates of the Castle of the Eagles?
Only the Devil knows. And it is up to Viktor to find out.
I have a copy of Michael’s book on my TBR, I have read so many amazing reviews of it. I will add the Craig Russell one. So, we’ve been drinking all evening. What is your failsafe plan to avoid a hangover and your go-to cure if you do end up with one?
Ha! Well I tend to drink a glass of water with 2 ibuprofen before I sleep – I have a high tolerance for gin so usually manage to avoid a bad hangover, but can feel very tired, so if that happens – it’s a duvet day with a constant flow of coffee, a good book and a few naps!
After our fabulous night out, what would be your ideal way to spend the rest of a perfect weekend?
A perfect weekend for me would be either the time to sit and read on my couch as much as I can or to attend a book event/festival. I love seeing my friends but most live miles away so any excuse that sees us all together is great for me!
Noelle, I have had a lovely evening, thank you for joining me and I can’t wait for the next book in the Maggie Jamieson series.
Noelle’s debut novel, Dead Inside, was published earlier this year and you can buy a copy here. I reviewed Noelle’s book on its paperback publication and you can find my review by following this link.
The killer is just getting started…
When three wife beaters are themselves found beaten to death, DC Maggie Jamieson knows she is facing her toughest case yet.
The police suspect that Probation Officer Lucy Sherwood – who is connected to all three victims – is hiding a dark secret. Then a fourth domestic abuser is brutally murdered.
And he is Lucy’s husband.
Now the police are running out of time, but can Maggie really believe her friend Lucy is a cold-blooded killer?
Noelle Holten is one of the PR & Social Media Managers for Bookouture, a leading digital publisher in the UK, and was a regular reviewer on the Two Crime Writers and a Microphone podcast. She worked as a Senior Probation Officer for eighteen years, covering a variety of cases including those involving serious domestic abuse but left in 2017. She has three Hons BA’s – Philosophy, Sociology (Crime & Deviance) and Community Justice – and a Masters in Criminology. Her hobbies include reading, author-stalking and sharing the booklove via her blog, Crime Book Junkie. Dead Inside is her debut novel with One More Chapter/Harper Collins UK and the start of a new series featuring DC Maggie Jamieson.
Next week I will be joined for Friday Night Drinks by fellow blogger and all round delightful human, Eva from Novel Deelights.