New Beginnings

Today is a first on my blog as I’m helping celebrate the launch of Rebecca Emin’s new book for older children ‘New Beginnings’, published by Grimoire Books today. When I began writing this time last year, I was introduced through an old friend to Twitter and, with it, a whole new world of welcoming and supportive writers. Rebecca was one of the first to offer me encouragement and it’s been a pleasure to get to know her and see her writing career blossom. So it’s great to be able to pay back a little of her kindness, by making her the subject of my first author feature.

The Writer

Rebecca lives in Oxfordshire, with her husband and three small children. She has had several flash fiction stories included in fundraising anthologies, including ‘50 Stories for Pakistan ’ and ‘Shambelurkling and Other Stories.’ She has also had a short story published in ‘Literary Mix Tapes: Nothing But Flowers,’ (Emergent Publishing 2011). Rebecca is also an author for Ether Books who publish short stories and essays to mobile devices via the Ether app. She has also recently published a collection of her short stories for adults entitled A Knowing Look and Other Stories’.
Rebecca has a website Ramblings of a Rusty Writer where you can find out more about the writer and her work including an excerpt from her latest project whilst younger children can explore her Children’s blog.

The Book

New Beginnings is a book for older children featuring Sam who becomes the target of bullying. Here’s a synopsis, my young friend Jenny (11) wrote for a school project at the start of Yr 6.

Sam Hendry is not the least bit excited about starting a new school. Things aren’t going the way she wanted them to go. A posse of people immediately come up to her and start to welcome her. But in life, there will always be friends and foes. Sam’s friends are standing up for her even though they barely know each other. Will she feel welcome or will she need to face the enemy as she doesn’t deserve to be treated the way she is? Sam needs to have confidence and she needs to trust the school. This book is timeless and is considered as one of the most natural topics to feel shy about…

I’ve read the book too and as an adult, it brought back my own memories of being bullied at school. However I found the story and tone taken in the book very positive and would recommend the book for older children especially those who are about to change school (or just have). It raises awareness of bullying and helps children feel able to discuss it, and do something about it, rather than suffer in silence. I’ve bought three advance copies as presents for children aged 10-12. All three have been extremely positive about the book. You can read other reviews of the book on Amazon and Goodreads.

The Interview

Hi Rebecca and welcome to the blog. Congratulations on the launch of ‘New Beginnings’. What does it feel like to see your book officially published?
It is incredibly exciting; from holding my own copy in my hands to seeing copies in bookshops is amazing. The best part of all though, is the feedback from readers. I will never get bored of that.
What made you decide to choose bullying as the central theme of the book?
I have been a victim of bullying as have many people I know, so I knew it would be a subject that many readers could relate to. This is why I mentioned Bullying UK in the book and have pledged to donate 10% of any profit I make to this charity.
Do you see yourself continuing to write stories for this age group or are you going to continue with Sam’s journey?
I love writing for children and at the moment I have plans to write a collection of short stories for 10-14s. However, I also feel a story brewing for younger readers which will be an adventure story. I will definitely take Sam’s story further one day too.
Did you plan the story out before you started writing and if so, did it turn out as you planned?
No, I wrote the first draft of New Beginnings in a month, and I literally sat and wrote out what came into my head each day. It took quite a bit of unravelling afterwards!
You’ve got a really busy life and writing is incredibly time-consuming. How do you find the time for writing? Do you have a regular time or place or is it as and when?
I slot writing in around everything else. Funnily enough, today is the first day that my youngest child will be at school full time. I think I will have a bit more structure to my routine now. I tend to write at my kitchen table as I like to look outside when I am thinking. I do find I write better in the mornings too.
What else have you been doing to promote the book?
I have spoken to most of the independent bookshops local to me and most of them are stocking the book. I have been interviewed by Radio Oxford, but today it’s all about celebrating the official publication date and I am doing that by launching writing competitions – one for children and one for adults –on my blogs (see above for links) and doing giveaways over on my Facebook page.
How can we get hold of the book?
New Beginnings can be ordered via any UK book shop, and is also available directly from the publisher, Grimoire Books. Signed copies are available via my blog, and it is also available from all the usual online places. A full list of suppliers can be found here
All the best with the book, Rebecca and thanks for taking the time to talk to me today.
Thank you so much for having me here on your blog. I really appreciate it.

You can folllow Rebecca on Twitter (@RebeccaEmin). If you enter the competitions, I wish you the best of luck and I hope you’ve been encouraged to buy the book for either your own children or someone else’s! Best wishes to Rebecca for the rest of her publication day.

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About Peter Domican
Marketer and change professional. Writer and photographer.

3 Responses to New Beginnings

  1. martha says:

    Lovely interview — and well done on the anti-bullying campaign, a worthwhile cause. M

  2. Rebecca Emin says:

    Thank you so much for the interview, write up and especially the words from Jenny. Really special and I am grateful to you for joining in with my Web Splash. Thanks lots x

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