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Q&A with Ellie Holmes, author of White Lies.

1    What genre do you write in and what have you written?

I write commercial women’s fiction, books with heart and soul and a dash of danger.  My first book was The Flower Seller which was released in June 2016 and White Lies, my current book, was released this June. 

They are both set in the fictional Essex market town of Abbeyleigh.  Both these books are available in ebook and paperback through Amazon. I have also written two novellas based in Cornwall, one called The Spanish Galleon (available in large print only at the moment through libraries) and The Tregelian Hoard which is available in ebook and paperback through Amazon.

2     What inspired your book White Lies?

I am fascinated by deception in all its forms and I wanted to write a story where someone is faced with a moral dilemma (I chose the car crash) and makes a snap decision as to which path to take.  Then, once they are on it, they have to carry on down that path.  

I also wanted to explore the idea of one lie leading to another and another so that a character becomes imprisoned by their own lies and somehow has to find their way back to themselves.

I think everyone will at some stage in their lives have told a white lie but even the simplest lie can have unexpected consequences.  Hopefully readers will put themselves in the shoes of the characters and think 'What would I have done?'

3    What other themes does the book explore?

I also wanted to explore the idea of how our parents imprint themselves on our lives both in good ways and bad.  All of the main characters are shaped by their parents' failings/lives - Neil because his own father failed in his profession driving Neil to succeed in his place, Sam being scarred because of her father's infidelity and David because he lost his parents at a young age and never came to terms with the grief.  This also gave me the opportunity to explore the idea that sometimes the biggest lies we tell are often the lies we tell ourselves.  In White Lies the characters only become true to themselves once they face up to their parents' influences and move beyond those influences to become their own people.

      Do you plan your books out in advance?

I always know where a book starts and where it finishes – everything else is a voyage of discovery.  I am sometimes surprised by the twists and turns of a book as I write it but I always follow my instinct and let the characters tell me their story.

What are you working on next?
Right now I am working on a darker, crime led book but still exploring the different faces of deception – whether it be the people doing the deceiving or those on the receiving end of being deceived.

      What advice would you give to other writers?

Believe in yourself and keep going.  Work hard at your writing, keep learning and developing and put yourself out there, engage with other writers through social media and join a local writing group if you can.

      Did you always want to be a writer?

Yes, ever since I was a child I have always felt compelled to write.  It is something I simply have to do and even if I had no audience I would still write.

         Who are your favourite authors?

I love Daphne Du Maurier and Sidney Sheldon.  They both tell gripping stories in wonderful settings with strong and believable characters.

          What message would you like readers to take from White Lies?

The message I’d like them to take from the book is simple.  Next time you are about to tell a lie, whether it be a white lie or something several shades darker, think twice.  Would honesty be a better choice?

      Tell us something about you as a person?

I am thrilled to be celebrating ten years cancer free this summer.


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