Today I’m thrilled to have Fiona Cummins author of Rattle and The Collector pop by the book review café and share a guest post about her working day with me. Interestingly enough both books by the author have featured on my top reads. If you haven’t read them yet I would highly recommend them both, especially if you love a darker crime thriller with a very intriguing serial killer.
A day with author Fiona Cummins
My typical writing day starts as soon as I drop my two children at school.
On the walk home, I begin to think about what I’m going to write next, and how I can move my story forward.
I’m lucky enough to have a study so I often write there.
The gorgeous paperweight on my desk was a gift from my university friend Emma to celebrate the publication of Rattle. The pen on the notepad was a present from Jason, my husband.
I keep copies of my novels on my desk to remind me that it is possible to finish a book, which is a great motivator when the writing is not going well.
I tend to scribble notes about my characters on scraps of paper, and have a file where I keep details of my research.
I also spend a lot of time looking out of the window from my desk. I find it inspiring to watch the sky change, and to watch the boats as they move up the silvery strip of the estuary.
Sometimes, I need a change of scene so I write at the kitchen table or in armchair in the sitting room, blanket over my knees and a mug of tea.
And if all else fails, I head to my favourite cafe Barlow and Fields, which has the best baristas, and there’s always someone to chat to. I like the noise and buzz while I’m writing.
I usually write (and poke about on Twitter) until lunchtime when I’ll take our puppy Binks for a walk. This helps to clear my head.
Then I potter around until it’s time to collect the children, but I’m also thinking about the story. Some of my best ideas come to me when I’m chopping vegetables or folding laundry.
Much later, after dinner, I’ll sit down at my desk, switch on my lamp and get back to work, perhaps with a large Jack Daniels and some music.
Depending on my progress, I’ll either go to bed despairing or quietly pleased.
My thanks to Fiona Cummins for taking time out of her busy schedule and also for the photographs from her personal collection.
About the author
Fiona Cummins is an award-winning former Daily Mirror showbusiness journalist and a graduate of the Faber Academy Writing A Novel course.
Rattle, her debut novel, has been translated into several languages and received widespread critical acclaim from authors including Val McDermid, Lee Child and Martina Cole. Marcel Berlins wrote in The Times: ‘Amid the outpouring of crime novels, Rattle is up there with the best of them.’
Fiona was selected for McDermid’s prestigious New Blood panel at the 2017 Theakston Old Peculier Crime Writing Festival, where her novel was nominated for a Dead Good Reader Award for Most Exceptional Debut.
Rattle is now being adapted into a six-part TV series by the producers of Golden Globe-nominated Miss Sloane.
Her second novel, The Collector, was published in February 2018.
When Fiona is not writing, she can be found on Twitter, eating biscuits or walking her dog. She lives in Essex with her family.