Everyone’s got a book in them so the saying goes and for Annalise Hulse, her book is already in circulation, thanks to the power of web publishing. We struck up an email correspondence with the author of Gifted last month…
How did you start writing?
I started writing when I was 7 or 8 when my mum tried to encourage me to do something constructive in the school holidays. I’d write stories about discovering I was actually a princess or finding magic slippers. Then I went through a big black eyeliner and tie dye leggings phase in my teens and wrote lots of cringe-worthy stuff about how life generally sucks when you’re fifteen and nobody understands you. It’s only been in the last eighteen months that I’ve really come back to it seriously. I needed a project I felt strongly about to get me back into it and when I came up with the idea for the Evangeline Devine series, it was my husband that suggested I stop talking about it and actually do it.
Tell us about the storyline of Gifted…
Gifted is the first of part of The Evangeline Devine Series. It’s a supernatural quadrilogy based in Jersey which centers around 17 year old Evangeline Devine – Evie – the youngest of six sisters, who nearly dies in a drowning accident. When she recovers she discovers that she has suddenly developed a sixth sense – the ability to communicate with the spirits of the dead. She initially tries to ignore it, but then discovers she has a murder to solve. What happens in Gifted is only the beginning of a much bigger story – it all gets quite epic by the end of the series!
Where do you get inspiration from?
A song lyric, something you see on TV or hear people talking about that takes root in your head and grows into something – anything really. But for this particular series, I knew I wanted to write something in the supernatural genre because that’s what I like reading myself. And what better place to set a paranormal novel than Jersey, which is steeped with legends of witchcraft and spookiness?
Who are your favourite authors?
I read A LOT. I like to read a lot of different authors, especially ones that I haven’t read before, because I think that reading other people’s writing teaches you a lot about your own. But my all time favourite has to be Stephen King. I also really love The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini. They are beautifully written and really moving – the sort of books that you can’t stop thinking about even after you’ve finished them.
If you could be a character in a book who would you be?
Matilda Wormwood in Roald Dahl’s Matilda – just because she was a reader and a dreamer who triumphed over her oppressors and had a lot of fun doing it. I really warm to strong female characters who have the courage to stand by their convictions in the face of adversity no matter what the cost.
Where is your favourite place to write?
I only ever write in the one place really and that’s my couch, usually with the dog on one side and my son on the other. If it gets too raucous, I go and sit on the back doorstep with my laptop
What’s the secret of being a successful writer?
I don’t think I am one yet! One day, hopefully.
Gifted is currently available on Amazon for Kindle devices, and you can read the first five chapters at www.annahulsebooks.com.