Ella longs for a child of her own, but a gruesome find during an adoption process deepens the cracks in her marriage. A family visit starts off a horrifying chain of events, and Ella can only hope she won’t lose the person she loves most of all. Amanda is expecting her second child when her husband vanishes. She is tortured by thoughts of violence and loss, but nothing prepares her for the shocking conclusion to the police investigation. And in the middle of it all, a little girl is looking for a home of her own with a ‘forever’ mummy and daddy…
I remember exactly when I started to write. It was for my Brownie Writers’ badge when I was seven, and I loved it so much I’ve never stopped. Inspiration for my books and stories comes from daily life – there’s a story in almost every situation, if not a book!
The idea for Chosen Child came to me eighteen months ago at my niece’s wedding in Scotland. I was chatting to a relative who works in child welfare, and I’m not sure how we got onto the subject of adoption, but we did. So there I was, glass in hand, hearing all about adoption activity days and the potential problems facing adoptive parents – and an entire plot crashed into my head.
My books are psychological thrillers, a genre that fascinates me. Every day we see people – strangers – going about their business, but we don’t see behind their ‘on the train face’ or their ‘walking along the street face’. Some of them could be going through hell, for all we know. Even with people know, we often have no idea what’s happening in their lives and what emotions drive them.
So many stories, just waiting to be written… In my books, I like to get right inside my character’s heads, show what they’re thinking and feeling. In psychological thrillers there’s usually something not-quite-right going on, and as my books all have at least two point of view characters, the reader knows more than the individual characters do, which is a good way to increase tension.
Working the plot out is actually the easy bit. This happens, then that, and so… Finding the characters is trickier, discovering what makes them tick and why they act the way they do. It’s challenging – and great fun! In Chosen Child, we have Ella, who is longing with all her heart to be a mother, but adoption is the only way, and her husband Rick, who is okay about adopting – but it should be a nice little white and healthy baby boy.
Then there’s Amanda, mother of a toddler and expecting her second baby. The way these three react to the problems they face at the beginning of the book changes their lives, and the lives of those close to them. Not least of all the child Ella and Rick are planning to adopt.
Research is another big part of my writing process. I always set my books in an area I know, but memories alone aren’t enough; I need information about things like – if you call 999 in St Ives, where does the ambulance come from and how long would it take? Is there a train link from Newquay to Penzance? The world wide web is a huge help here. And of course there’s police procedure – but the above-mentioned niece has solved this problem very nicely for me by marrying a policeman!
The ending of a book needs thought too – I like it to be positive but also realistic after what’s happened in the story. The reader should be left feeling the characters might be out there somewhere, living their lives… and who knows what’ll happen next!
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About the Author
The Paradise Trees, The Cold Cold Sea, The Attic Room and Chosen Child are available in eBook and paperback. Find out more at Linda's website http://lindahuber.net/ and follow her on Facebook and Twitter @LindaHuber19