Friday, January 14, 2011

Interview with Gemma Burgess, Author of 'A Girl Like You'

Today, I'm very pleased to welcome Gemma Burgess to my blog! Her first book, an anti-romantic comedy called The Dating Detox, was a hilarious, warm-hearted read. Gemma's just released A Girl Like You, and I can't wait to get my mitts on that one.

And a massive congratulations to her -- she's just signed a book series deal with St Martin's Press in New York! Not only that, her awesome Dating Detox trailer has now reached over 25,000 hits. You can read more on her blog.

Gemma did me the favour of reading through The Hating Game pre-publication, and she did wonders at soothing my pre-pub nerves. She's every bit as lovely and funny as you might expect from an author who writes such wonderful novels.

Right, I've done enough gushing, so I give you... Gemma!

1. Your second novel, A Girl Like You, has just been released. Was it easier or harder to write than your first?

Both. Harder, because I was worried that the nice reviews I had for The Dating Detox were a one-off, and well, the first was just a bit of fun, the second was suddenly 'real'... Easier, because, well, the more you write, the better you get at it! - same goes for plotting, dialogue, characterisation...

2. What are three things you must have to make your writing day a good one (e.g., tea, vodka…)?

Coffee, a large bottle of still water, and nice nails.

3. What’s one thing you wish you knew about the publication process before you got published?

Two things: that it's very, very slow, and that you have no control over your cover so it's not worth stressing about.

4. What’s your favourite word? Least favourite?

My favourite and least favourite words are the same; when I go through my writing, I find certain words everywhere, and curse myself for having such a limited and predictable vocabulary - soupcon, awesome, seriously, dude... Actually, I didn't use dude much in A Girl Like You, as it didn't suit the main character. But I used it a lot in The Dating Detox.

5. If you had to choose between a cocktail, ten minutes on Twitter, reading a few pages of a novel or a bite of cake, what would you choose?

You had me at 'cocktail'. Twitter is fun, but not as fun as a cocktail. I like my novels in big chunks. Ditto cakes.

About Gemma:
Gemma Burgess wrote her first book, The Dating Detox, when she and her sister discussed the difficulty of had finding a comfort read with cojones. Her second book, A Girl Like You, is inspired by her experiences of learning to navigate the bastard-infested waters of the London bar scene after a long time in a relationship. Gemma grew up all over the place and now lives in Notting Hill. Find out more at www.gemmaburgess.com or follow her on Twitter at @gkateb.

Thank you, Gemma! Have a great weekend, everyone.

51 comments:

  1. Great interview, I love the sound of Gemma's books. Have aded them to my must-reads.

    Also, really fun questions - the last one stumped me. I'd need to know the title of the novel and the flavour of the cake. . .

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  2. A Girl Like You - reminds me of a song!

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  3. It's always nice getting to know writers this way. Best wishes with A Girl Like You, and congrats on your St. Martins deal!

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  4. This is a lovely interview! Thank you, Gemma and Talli! And congratulations on the book deal!

    Talli, I am so behind on your posts - and the blogosphere in general. Why is January so insane?

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  5. I have more books to add to my list. Great interview. I hope both of you have a wonderful weekend.

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  6. What a fun interview! I'll look for Gemma's books. Thanks for introducing me to her!

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  7. I love the sound of these!!! The covers are so cute! I heart them!

    Adding them to my goodreads list!!! These are too good to pass up!

    Thanks for the post Talli! You Rock!

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  8. the bastard infected waters of London - ha ha I love that but it can be so true sometimes.
    I won an amazon gift card from Deniz Bevan so I am going to get a girl like you and a Noddy DVD for the toddler NOW!

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  9. Ah, looks good! Interesting what she says about the cover!I think that would make me mad! I'm challanging myself to read a book a week this year and to review it on my blog..started last week and really need to get off the comp and get reading if i'm gonna keep up! haha

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  10. I liked this interview! Gemma sounds fun. I'm adding her novels to my reading list!

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  11. wow, thanks for introducing us to Gemma! Her books sound like a lot of fun!

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  12. Super duper interview! I'm sorry I haven't read this book yet. I'm putting it on my TBR.
    CD

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  13. This sounds like a book that could be made into a movie. Sounds like a lotta fun & I loved the description of a comfort read w/ cojones! :)

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  14. Gemma sounds awesome and I have got to read that book! Thanks for featuring her.

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  15. Love the post. You both have such vibrant personalities the interview was fun to read.

    'you had me at cocktails' Love that girl! :)


    Good luck to you both with your books in 2011.

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  16. Excellent interview. I love - "It's very, very slow... you have no control... not worth stressing about."

    Thanks Talli - her two books will be added to goodreads right now before I forget they exist because my brain is just cluttered like that ;)

    Also - thank you for posting an excellent interview that straight to the point and not eight miles long :)

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  17. Great interview, Talli! Thanks for sharing us Gemma's books! I'm very curious and will surely get both of them. I love your questions, too! :) All the best to you both!

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  18. This was a fun interview and the books sound like fun too, as well as the author:)

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  19. Thanks, everyone! Gemma's writing is fantastic - I can't wait to read her new one!

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  20. Terrific interview, Talli! Gemma, nice to meet you. I've got your blog on follow.

    As to that question... it depends on the novel and the cake. If it's black forest, the novel loses out.

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  21. I like my novels in chunks too. Nice interview.

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  22. Soupcon? Is that like Dragoncon? A convention for soup geeks?

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  23. These books sound fantastic. I love the idea of a comfort read with cojones - sums up precisely a whole new genre! Go, Gemma!

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  24. Awesome interview! Well done all.

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  25. What fun - hello Gemma, your books sound lovely and congratulations on your book series deal. I'd go for a cocktail too as I also like my books and cakes in big chunks!

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  26. Thank you lovely Talli for this fun interview with amazing Gemma Burgess!! I hope she doesn't mind but I am adopting the phrase "cocktails and nice nails" as my writerly must haves from this day henceforth! :-)

    Take care
    x

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  27. I enjoyed this interview. It has opened up some interesting details about writers :).

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  28. Sounds like a great read! And a great interview!! Hope you have a fabulous weekend!

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  29. I really enjoyed this interview. Gemma sounds like a clever, talented writer. I'm looking forward to reading her work.

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  30. Ha! Great interview! Awesome Q&A!

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  31. You always have such great posts. How do you do it?

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  32. Terrific interview! I haven't read Gemma's work yet - but it sounds like I'll love it! Thanks for the tip :)

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  33. Fun interview. I'd choose cake everytime! And I agree that the second novel is always harder to write than the first. It's agony.

    Jai

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  34. Great interview! Gemma's books sound fantastic.

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  35. Fabulous interview! I love her answer to #5. And my TBR list just keeps growing and growing... :)

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  36. Great interview, Talli. Brilliant questions - and answers. I got stuck at cocktail too...

    I'll look out for Gemma's novels.

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  37. Thanks for that fab interview and for telling us about Gemma's new book. I look forward to reading it.

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  38. That was fun Talli-certainly not your ordinary boring run of the mill type exchange of information. Good for you!

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  39. Gotta go with the cocktail myself every time. But don't drink and Twitter. Bad things can only happen.

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  40. I loved the Dating Detox trailer! Great interview - nice nails are soooo important :)

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  41. Hi Gemma, Thanks for the read. I enjoyed. The book sounds very cool and I shall add it to my book list. Great interview and congrats on publishing.

    Jacqueline Howett Author of The Greek Seaman novel.

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  42. This was a great interview, thank you both :) These books sound great, can't wait to read!

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  43. Nice interview! You had me at cocktail too... I can't just read a few minutes of a good book.

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  44. What a great interview, Talli! Very great getting to know Gemma. I looked up her new book, it sounds awesome. I'm going to have to check it out in stores.

    ~TRA

    http://xtheredangelx.blogspot.com

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  45. Another to add to my reading list. Thanks Talli!

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  46. Short and sweet interview, and I love answer no. 3 from Gemma. Thanks, Talli, for posting this!

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  47. Wow, she's got some very exciting stuff going on! I have a terrible tendency to overuse words and I don't even notice it. I just did a FIND on the words "slip" and "slid" on my wip and I couldn't believe how many times they came up.

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  48. Hi Talli .. great interview and congratulations to you both for your publications ... interesting points about the slowness of the process and the fact you have no control over the cover ..

    Gosh all three! .. no twitter .. would interrupt my enjoyment of the others .. and I could spread the novel reading between tea and cocktail time ..

    Cheers Hilary

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  49. I loved Gemma's first book, The Dating Detox, it was a great read, lots of fun and the heroine was my kind of feisty. I'm really looking forward to reading A Girl Like You.

    Great interview ladies and congrats to Gemma on the wonderful book deal!

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Coffee and wine for all!