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Inverness writer Joanna Corrance follows up fantasy novella with more books – the next in October

By Margaret Chrystall

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WITH her first book out in 2021, Highland solicitor Joanna Corrance confirms there are more on their way.

Joanna Corrance whose first book will be published next year.
Joanna Corrance whose first book will be published next year.

Despite lockdown, Joanna’s short science fiction novel John’s Eyes was published as planned by science fiction and fantasy specialist Luna in Edinburgh in their novella series.

Even before Covid came along, Joanna had started working on her “post-apocalyptic crime thriller”. But when she last spoke about it, she admitted even then that it felt weird to be writing it deep into the brave new world of a pandemic lockdown.

But coming out first in October is The Gingerbread Men, Joanna’s new book for gothic literature publisher Haunt.

Joanna explained: “That happened after I took part in the XpoNorth tweet pitch project.

“You have to put a short pitch describing your book on Twitter and publishers are invited to pick up ones they find interesting.

“That was how I got in touch with Luna Press originally, I had pitched the idea for John’s Eyes as a novel, which they didn’t take, but they did tell me about their novella project.

“So I would definitely recommend the tweet pitch, though they are really hard – you only have those few characters!”

Currently on maternity leave after the birth of her son Francis, Joanna said she was determined to keep her writing going.

“I had a grand notion in the first month of maternity leave that I was going to write a new novel,” Joanna said.

But looking after a baby has its challenges – “I did manage to write a short story to keep my brain in gear, but it’s the lack of hands that makes it difficult”!

“I did think about using a voice recorder, but there is something I like about writing and drawing pictures. I don’t feel it comes out as well for me trying to do it using a laptop. So usually I write with a pen and type it up later onto my laptop. I think writing by hand gets my brain in gear!”

Despite her doubts about finding a way to write looking after her son, Joanna has got another book written, “a kind of novella”, she says, with a series of interconnected stories set in the North of Scotland.

“That was a fun one to write!” Joanna said.

The writer revealed having publishers wanting to take her work is good for her confidence.

“The more my work is picked up , the more I’m encouraged. When someone believes in you and your work, it’s the best thing ever.”

John's Eyes.
John's Eyes.

Though Joanna loves to write, she also lovers her work as a solicitor and has no plans to give it up to write full-time.

“I have had deadlines to work to before and I try and treat it like a job.”

And she likes to keep writing, just to keep it going.

“I’d rather write 2,000 words and get rid of it the next day if it’s rubbish rather than not writing anything. I am quite strict with myself to make sure I keep writing.”

Joanna is also doing her best to give her baby son the same love of books his mum has.

“They say start as soon as you can and though they won’t follow a storyline if you read to them, they hear the voice. And he definitely really enjoys that. And I’m keen when he gets a bit older to make up bedtime stories with him

“My dad used to do that and would make me the starring character in them!”

As for her own reading, Joanna is finding that more difficult.

She laughed: “I have a pile of books – they’re staring at me now!”

Find John’s Eyes (Luna Novella, £7.99) here: https://www.lunapresspublishing.com/product-page/john-s-eyes and The Gingerbread Men in October: hauntpublishing.com/news/2021/5/27/haunt-to-publish-the-gingerbread-men-by-joanna-corrance

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