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I can’t bear the thought of you writing more books that won’t be published – have you considered publishing them yourself as ebooks?
The two Countess books which were only available in the UK are about to go online as ebooks for kindle. By then end of the year there may be a few more books, including unpublished ones. Meanwhile, all you Countess fans, watch out for THE AMBITIOUS STEPMOTHER and FORTUNE’S SLAVE which will be available on on Amazon, both UK and US, and you can even get it on the German site if you want to pay in Euros!
have you made an audio version of “Fortunes Slave”? I have the three previous novels as audio books and enjoy them so much. It is wonderful to hear them read by you with all the nuances and character as you must have imagined them when you wrote them! Having read previous comments on this page I would like to add my plea for more books!
No. At the moment there are only the three audio versions available: Unnatural Fire, The Rival Queens and The Ambitious Stepmother.
I’m still living in hope regarding writing further books. The current situation means that publishers want more obvious and less quirky things, but as people get more and more depressed I’m hoping someone will again want to have a laugh (joined up with a great deal of jolly interesting historical veracity)
As a new student to drama, my tutor gave me his copy of ‘Bluff your way in Theatre’, which I enjoy greatly; it’s both educational and a damn good laugh. Was it as much fun to write?
I had a ball writing it. And for once it gave me a chance to encapsulate nearly everything I had studied at university or learned through pracatical work in the theatre into a few pages. I wish I’d had it myself when a student – it would have saved me many late nights. Glad it was useful to you.
more of a beg than a question: pleeeez bring back The Countess & Alpiew I miss reading about their shannanagings! Or better still…lets see them on TV- oo how fabuleux ! Thank you
No one would love to do this more than me, but sadly the publisher decided to stop the series and instead pursue celebrity books…
Keep spreading the word and you never know, another publisher may decide to resurrect the series and let me continue. I do have the next four books all planned out and was hanging about, ready to go, when they suddenly cancelled.
As for TV, a production company is working hard on this at the moment. It’s a pity the project got going as the recession bit, but we are hopeful that it won’t be too long before, one way or another, the Countess is back .
How come you were born in a gypsy caravan?
Because my mother was there at the time – Boom! Boom! In fact my parents had moved down from Liverpool in search of work, but finding somewhere to live was another matter. I have my mother’s diary for that year in which she is in great distress that unless they can find a house her child will be born in a field. However it did give me a marvellous riposte to all the teachers who said ‘Were you born in a field?’ It also has quite a mystical quality, in that the caravan was in the orchard of ancient Amesbury Abbey where Queen Guinevere died, and only a few hundred metres from Stonehenge and Woodhenge.
Madam, it is with great pleasure that I have read of the ventures and misfortunes of the Countess Ashby de la Zouche and her former maid, Alpiew. I do hope that you will not give up on them despite what has been called the Conan Doyle Problem – or what to do when you are weary of your creations and the public are not. Yours Lord Girish Sethna
I’m afraid it wasn’t the Arthur Conan Doyle problem so much as unfortunate trends in British publishing. Put simply, my publishers didn’t like the books so discontinued me. Rumblings are afoot to get them re-issued in the USA at least, but thanks to the recession everything takes longer than time itself. I look forward to the day, your Grace, when I can bring you the Countess in further adventures.
The Countess adventures are such fun I was wondering how much of it is historically accurate?
Before I turned to writing them I used to write books about the people and theatre of the time, and my finals dissertation was also on the year 1700. My background is therefore well established. But on top of that I am almost obsessive in my desire to get things right. When the Countess visits Drury Lane in February you will find the play which she sees did actually play that night. Whenever possible I even try, by consulting diaries etcetera, to get the weather right. You can see other instances of surprising historical accuracy on my History of the Countess series page. You see historical truth is so much more interesting than the clichéd way people like to think was the past.
Which do you prefer – acting or writing?
That’s like saying which do you prefer – baked beans or chocolate? BOTH of course. Though on a first night I probably wish I was at home writing a book, and when I am wrestling with a deadline I probably yearn to be strutting my stuff on stage.
I saw you in London recently at a pub quiz. Do you go often?
I am mad about quizzes. I regularly go to pub quizzes wherever I find them. I even write the odd quiz. You can try some of mine, along with my games
Who is your favourite musician?
You might as well ask me to count the grains of sand on the US coastline. I adore music. It would be easier to tell you what I don’t like – Mozart, the hits of Abba and Rap.
Have you ever done any other jobs than acting and writing?
Not really. I teach and lecture quite a bit, when asked, and have given talks everywhere from Stanford University to the late lamented QEII. As far as other jobs go I did try. I have to confess that I spent half a day as a secretary. I was sacked just after lunch. I have also been a fortune teller.
I’m sure you have been asked this every day but please tell me? Have the BBC or others cottoned on to what a great series your wonderful novels would make. They should stop wasting our time with all this medical and cops tripe. Give us the Countess, Alpiew and Godfrey. A television feast…. Melanie
The books have been under offer by some TV company or other since before they were first published. Currently we are working very hard, in a finance-torn industry. We have a script, some brilliant directors and some great actors on board. I feel certain it won’t be long before the terrible trio make it to the small screen.
Have you thought of writing a Countess Ashby de la Zouche musical? The West End, Broadway, hmmmm. I think it would be a great vehicle for your zest, your sense of humour, and your skill. Susan
What a fabulous idea! I think also it would be great on the stage … Any composers please apply.