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Jo Linsdell Is Interviewed By WWAAM

Posted on February 25, 2013 at 11:15 AM

Where Writers And Authors Meet Interviews:
Jo Linsdell!

Jo Linsdell was our Featured Spotlight author last week and vistors were encouraged to ask Jo some of their own questions! Here is a link to that Spotlight! Feel free to ask more questions, and we might just be able to get Jo back for a follow up interview!



1. Tell us something interesting about yourself that is not in your Amazon author's profile... (Edward Frank)

     I used to be a model and actress. Nothing major but it was good fun. Most of the modelling I did was for hair stylists and for make up and it was interesting seeing how other people would transform me. As for the acting I did mainly theatre. I guess I've always been the creative sort.

2. Your author's profile says, "She has had various jobs including working in hostels, being a tour guide and teaching English as a foreign language. She now works full-time as a freelance writer." So basically you telling us that you became a writer because you couldn't hold a job? (I'm just teasing you) but seriously tell us what prompted you to write your first book? (Edward Frank)

     I had more jobs than just those listed here too. I was a waitress, a credit controller, a shop assistant... I even worked very briefly as a hairdresser. I actually did a lot of these jobs all at the same time though. I'd be a tour guide in the morning, teacher in the afternoon and cover reception at a hostel in the evening. I was basically just filling in until I found what I really wanted to do. I've always been a bit of a free spirit.

     I wrote my first book Italian for Tourists because so many people asked me to write it. That simply really. When I was working in the hostel I'd get told by someone at least once a day that I should write a phrasebook for tourists. I didn't think much of it at the time. Then in 2005 I saw an ad that an English language newspaper in Florence was looking for articles and at the time I was writing research articles for the Neurology department of a hospital here in Rome. I figured I'd give it a go and write about something that actually interested me for a change. They printed it in the next issue. This was the turning point for me and made me realise I could write about stuff I liked. As I was still getting requests for a phrasebook I decided that would be a good place to start.

3. You have two young sons. Are they the impetus for your two children's books - "Fairy" May and "Out and About at the Zoo"? (Edward Frank)

     Out and About at the Zoo is based on the first time I took my son to the zoo. I wrote it after he asked me why I hadn't written a book for him yet. I figured he made a good point.

      Fairy May came about because my niece saw I had dedicated Out and About at the Zoo to my two sons and she asked if I'd write a book for her too. It had to have fairies in it. The inspiration for the tooth fairy theme was caused by the fact that my youngest was teething. My eldest had also had friends from school losing their first teeth and so teeth was a hot topic in our house.

      My kids are definitely a constant font of inspiration for me and have given me plenty of other ideas to work on for future releases.

4. What was the hardest thing about writing your most recent book "Fairy May"?(Edward Frank)

     Giving it the right message whilst making the rhyming text fit and at the same time telling a story that would appeal to young kids. When writing in rhyme it's not enough that the text is rhyming. It can't sound forced. You can't just insert a word because it rhymes. It has to fit the story too.

      The first draft of Fairy May had a different feel to it. It was rhyming and basically the same story but the message that came across wasn't quite what I was after. I rewrote most of the second half to make the emphasis more about not giving up and achieving her goals as opposed to just passing the test.

5. What have you learned about the writing process through working on these books?(Edward Frank)

      That writing for children is lots of fun and very rewarding but far from easy.

6. What's Next For You As A Storyteller? What stories are you working on at the moment or are still bouncing around in your head? (Edward Frank)

     I'm currently working on two non-fiction books The Writers and Authors Guide to Social Media and Virtual Book Tours. I also have another two children's picture books in the works; The Bedtime Book and the first book in The Adventures of Nappo and Lollo series.

7. From what I've read, you are the "Queen of Social Media." What is it like to be Queen? (Fred Charles)

      I'm very flattered by that title but I'm far from Royalty. I am a social media junky though. My favourite platforms are Facebook, Twitter and Google+. I'm going to be developing my presence on YouTube this year too. With so many sites available it's hard to not give into temptation and sign up for them all. I'd rather have a strong presence on a few though than spread myself too thin. The best thing about social media is that it's SOCIAL. It's just not possible to be constant and interact with that many people, in that many different ways and places, all at the same time. Quality is better than quantity.

8. Do you have any tips for using social media from you point of view as an author? (Fred Charles)

      Loads ;) I think maybe the biggest bit of advice I can give though is to find a platform that fits you best and build on that. You don't need to be on all the platforms around and not all platforms will be suited to you or your audience. Research which sites your target demographic is using and look at how you like to communicate most. YouTube is fantastic and 2013 has been dubbed "the year of video" but not every author will feel comfortable in front of a camera or have skills that allow them to frequently produce quality content.

9. In my first book, Marge gets reunited with her Italian lover, so my question is do you think Italian men are great lovers? I know its kind of a personal question, but I noticed that it says you married your husband in Italy who is Italian. (RuthieLovesJesusDerby)

      From my personal experience I'd definitely say yes... from what I've sampled I have no complaints ;)

10. Your book Fairy May is about a tooth fairy. What gave you the idea to write about the tooth fairy? Do you still believe in the tooth fairy? (Ruthie)

     My niece wanted me to write a book for her and, on her request, it needed to have fairies in it. As my youngest had been teething the tooth fairy came straight to mind.

     I wish I still believed in the Tooth Fairy and all the other characters like her. When you can still see magic like that the world is a better place. I hope my kids don't grow up too quickly so I get to indulge in the Tooth Fairy, Father Christmas and all those other wonderful characters for a while longer.

11. How much do you read yourself? Are you an avid reader? What is your favourite genre? (Sophia:

      I'm an avid reader and enjoy various genres. I love a good chick lit but also crime and suspense. I also read a lot of non-fiction particularly about writing and marketing related topics. One of my latest hobbies is learning html code so I've been reading quite a few books on that recently too. With two small kids the genre I read most though is picture books ;)

12. Have you ever encountered writers' block? If so, what is your strategy to overcome it? (Sophia:

      Writers' block isn't something I've ever had to deal with. I'm always working on multiple projects and so if I'm not in the mood for writing one I work on the other. I guess I'm helped by the fact that I write multiple genres.



     From the Admin:  Thank you for sharing your answers and your multiple talents with us Jo

You can find Jo Linsdell's Book's on Amazon Here:

Categories: Writers Interviews

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Reply Jo Linsdell
12:03 PM on February 25, 2013 
Thanks for putting this interview together Virginia and to everyone for the wonderful questions.
Reply Edward Forrest Frank
7:59 PM on February 25, 2013 
Excellent answers!
Reply Jo Linsdell
3:10 PM on February 26, 2013 
Thanks ;)
Edward Forrest Frank says...
Excellent answers!
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