A couple of months ago, I was asked to interview Southampton based author, Eunice P. England, as part of the local magazine On the Scene Magazine. This was for her debut novel Kedge Skropett and, in the hope she might capture new readers, I thought I should post it on Book Snail Reviews!
Fortune, woe, hope, murder and revenge: these are the foundations for Eunice P. England’s debut novel, Kedge Skroppett, released on 16th December 2015 by Austin Macauley. Set in the early eighteenth century, Kedge Skropett is born into a prison, where, after being separated from his twin sister, he is sent to live with a beggar man, where his life follows an exciting mix of fortune and revenge.
This novel is written in poetic verse; something which peaked my interest, and I was keen to find out more from Eunice herself.
This poetic story is an interesting concept – what made this idea come about?
When I’ve read poetry in the past, and loved it, I have often wished for it to go on and on. I find it frustrating that something as gorgeous as a verse can be stopped so suddenly. There is a poem called ‘The Rhyme of the Ancient Mariner’ by Samuel TaylorColeridge. It is one of the longest poems I have ever read, about a sailor who has returned from a long sea voyage, and is split into several parts. I suppose in a way this helped me along with my idea, though it had been in the pipeline for awhile.
How long did you take to write it?
Overall, it took about three years. When I write I tend to work on several pieces at once; an adjustment here, an adjustment there; I like to have variety.
Kedge – Where is the name from?
An aunt of mine used to use the name “Tedge” all the time as a nickname for someone or other. I am not entirely sure as to why she used it, or whom she was referring to, but I thought it sounded brilliant. All I did was remove the ‘T’ and play around with several different letters and spellings before I decided that “Kedge” suited perfectly. I wanted something completely original, but that still had that Victorian-esque authenticity about it. After I had the name down, the character sort of, made himself and I found myself thinking faster than I could write!
Why do you write?
I’ve always been creative; I love knitting, sewing and crochet, but my real passion lies in fictional writing. I can put it down and pick it up; weeks, months or even years later and simply carry on – I suppose, in a way it is a bit like knitting. I don’t have to do it, but I love it. I also have a keen interest in painting and drawing, although I never considered myself to be an artist. I illustrated Kedge Skroppet. Admittedly it was out of necessity as I couldn’t find anyone to illustrate for me, but I have an incredibly supportive daughter who just said to me one day: “Mum. You can draw.” And so I did.
Who inspires you?
Who inspires me? I can’t say anybody really inspires me. I find inspiration all around me: from the dust mites in the carpet, to the stars in the galaxy. I often look at the sky and see a blank canvas that I could just fill with endless streams of words. If there is too much clutter around me, or too many sounds filling my head, I just look at the sky. That’s my inspiration.
Any advice for budding writers?
Write about what you absolutely love. You have to be passionate about what you are writing about. Write about something that would be beneficial to the world. I find it best to sit on what I have been writing for a while, to let it mature in my mind, before going back to it. Ask yourself: Is this really what I want the world to see? Don’t publish something you will regret later.