Mastodon The Writing Desk: Special Guest interview with Roland Hui, Author of Anne Boleyn, An Illustrated Life of Henry VIII's Queen

3 March 2023

Special Guest interview with Roland Hui, Author of Anne Boleyn, An Illustrated Life of Henry VIII's Queen

Available from Amazon UK and Amazon US

Explore the incredible story of Anne Boleyn, the most famous and controversial of Henry VIII's six wives, in this exciting new account of her life told in words and pictures.

I am pleased to welcome author Roland Hui to The Writing Desk: 

Tell us about your latest book  

Thank you Tony for having me on your blog! My latest book is 'Anne Boleyn, An Illustrated Life of Henry VIII's Queen'. It covers Anne's life from her birth in 1507 (yes, I do argue for the traditional date as opposed to the now more widely accepted 1501) to her tragic downfall in May 1536. The book has over a hundred images (paintings, prints, medals, etc.), some never published before.

What is your preferred writing routine?  

I try to put in a good couple of hours per day when I can. I find working out of home helps as there are too many distractions. A good library (particularly at a good university) with well stacked history sources on its shelves is great place to do research and to write.

What advice do you have for new writers?  

You have to be passionate about your subject that you plan to devote the next couple of months (or years!) to. Also, stand out by having something new and fresh to offer your readers. And think about how you will be getting your book out there once it's done. Do you have a literary agent or a publisher? Or do you plan to self publish? Do you know fellow authors who can help you with advance reviews?

What have you found to be the best way to raise awareness of your books?  

In this day and age, social media of course. Good reviews are also helpful, along with word of mouth.

Tell us something unexpected you discovered during your research  

In many biographies of Anne Boleyn, her time in the Hapsburg Netherlands where she received her early education is often given little attention. She only spent about a year there from 1513 to 1514 so there was hardly any documentation about her activities. However, they can be reconstructed with some confidence. Anne was part of Margaret of Austria's court in Mechelen, and by reading Margaret's letters, one can often figure out where Anne specifically was and probably doing. For instance, as part of the archduchess's entourage, she would have accompanied Margaret to Brussels for the wedding of her niece Isabeau of Austria to King Christian II of Denmark and Norway in the summer of 1514. Interestingly, this couple became the parents of Christina of Denmark who was famously proposed as a fourth wife to Henry VIII.

What are you planning to write next?  

A book entitled 'The Adversities of Fortune' - a history of the Seymour family from Queen Jane down to her nephew Edward Seymour who married Lady Katherine Grey.

Roland Hui

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About the Author

Roland Hui received his degree in Art History from Concordia University in Canada. After completing his studies, he went on to work for California State Parks, The U.S. Forest Service and The National Park in interpretive media. Roland is the author of 'The Turbulent Crown: The Story of the Tudor Queens' (2017) and the co-creator of 'The Mary Queen of Scots Colouring Book' (2019). He has also been published academically in 'Parergon: Journal of the Australian and New Zealand Association for Medieval and Early Modern Studies'. He blogs about Tudor art and personalities at: and you can find Roland on Twitter @TudorFaces

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