Today I welcome Anne Goodwin to my blog. We have published Ann in Bridge House anthologies and have been in touch with her for sometime. Make sure you get a copy of her fabulous book released on 23 November and do join her online launch party (details below) . I'll be there!
About my new book, its focus and inspiration
At the time of writing, I’ve published two novels and around eighty short stories, the latter in various anthologies (including a couple from Bridge House), and in online and print magazines. I’m now about to publish my first short story collection with micro-press Inspired Quill. As with my debut novel, Sugar and Snails, the unifying theme is identity, and particularly the process of developing, losing and reclaiming one’s identity encapsulated in the title Becoming Someone.
Many writers are curious about identity. How do we become who we are and how that does that change across time and circumstance? How do we manage the gap between who we are and who we would like to be or who others feel we ought to be? How much control do we have over our identity and is it bestowed on us by others or something that arises from within? The way I’ve explored – and occasionally answered – these questions in my fiction is informed by my own identities, including my professional background as a clinical psychologist.
Like a satisfying story, the journey to selfhood often entails working through conflict. Sometimes, it’s only through opposition that we begin to discover what really matters to us. I also believe identity develops in the context of a relationship, even if only with oneself. Furthermore, we have multiple roles and identities, and the tensions between them can cause real-life difficulties – or a satisfying fictional narrative arc. Then there’s the conflict that ensues when someone close to us changes how they present themselves, forcing us to change too. Although none of the forty-two stories were written with a theme in mind, I could probably spin a tale to suggest I’d been working towards this collection since my first short-fiction publication over ten years ago.
Nevertheless, I found it challenging, in assembling the collection, to ensure the individual stories were sufficiently different, while the whole would be more than the sum of its parts. In an attempt to illustrate the process of becoming someone, we’ve arranged the stories in order of the central character’s increasing confidence with who they are. In the first section, a struggling teenage mother is followed by a man who identifies more with birds than people. At the end, a jaded wife finding a new impetus precedes a widow marking her husband’s passing in style. In between, there’s a Holocaust survivor, an amputee high on morphine, a sex tourist, an adoptee with a secret, an overworked doctor and a girl who can’t smile – although they probably wouldn’t choose to introduce themselves that way.
How can we get a copy?
Becoming Someone is published in paperback and e-book formats on 23rd November, 2018, by Inspired Quill. Generally, my books are most easily accessed through online retailers, through my publisher’s website or at author events:
Amazon author page viewauthor.at/AnneGoodwin
Author page at Inspired Quill publishers http://www.inspired-quill.com/authors/anne-goodwin/
Also, anyone subscribing to my author newsletter before 19th November, has the chance of winning a signed copy. https://annegoodwin.weebly.com/sign-up-for-my-newsletter.html
Do you have any events planned?
For the first time, I’m hosting a Facebook launch party on publication day, 23rd November, 2018 (and found your post on how to go about it extremely useful, Gill).
My book is dedicated to a couple of online friends who have been especially supportive of my writing and I’m excited that they will be able to celebrate with me from Australia and the USA. I’m also using this event to support Book Aid: the more people participate, the more I’ll donate to this charity getting books into the hands of disadvantaged readers around the world.
I’m also having a live launch along with a few other local writers at Nottingham Writers’ Studio on 9th December.