ON WRITING

“It’s very easy to quit during the first ten years of writing. Nobody cares whether you write or not, and it’s very hard to write when nobody cares one way or the other. You can’t get fired if you don’t write, and most of the time you don’t get rewarded if you do. But don’t quit.” Andre Dubus

JOIN YOLANDA RENEE ON HER BLOG TOUR!

Thursday, 8 May 2014

Australian debut author, Ella Carey, lands her Paris Time Capsule on my blog.


Hello writers and booklovers! I'm reposting this post for the Cephalopod Coffeehouse, which is book review heaven at the end of each month. There is an author interview below my review. Please feel free to skip this and just read the information about the book.

If a book has got 'Paris' in the title, I'll buy it. And my latest 'Paris' purchase is by Australian author Ella Carey with her debut novel The Paris Time Capsule (I believe she has plenty of trunk manuscripts too!) And what a debut! But first, a little about Ella. 


Like me, Ella Carey is a self confessed Francophile who can almost claim Paris as her second home. Ella spotted the story of the apartment in Paris that had been abandoned for seventy years on a blog in 2011. At that time, Ella was working with an agency in London on a novel about a mystery surrounding valuable art. But the story about a woman who left her treasure filled apartment in Paris, not to mention a valuable Boldini portrait hanging on the wall, never to return again, seemed the perfect inspiration. Why did the apartment’s owner, Madame de Florian never return to Paris? Why did she keep the apartment a secret until she died? What’s more, the story held all Ella’s passions in one perfect package. Ella has degrees in English literature and Music, and a passion for Art and History. She has learned French since she was five and has travelled to Paris at least a dozen times. Ella has had her work published in the Review of Australian Fiction and has written stories for as long as she has spoken French. Ella Carey lives with her husband, two children and two divine Italian greyhounds.

About The Paris Time Capsule

2010: New York photographer Cat Jordan has always fought against her past, but when a stranger dies in Paris, Cat finds herself the sole inheritor of an apartment in the ninth arrondissement that has been locked up for seventy years.

A stash of love letters belonging to Marthe de Florian, one of the Belle Époque’s most famous demimondaines, and the appearance of the beautiful and mysterious Isabelle de Florian’s grandson leads Cat in search of the reasons why Isabelle kept her Paris apartment a secret until her death, and why she left her entire estate to Cat.

As Cat unravels the story, she too embarks on her own journey, realizing that the secrets in the apartment may finally unlock the future…

I loved this book, so arranged for Ella to pop up on my blog today as part of her rounds to talk about her debut novel, her writing life and whatever...



Your novel is set in Paris and in various other locations in France. Have you ever visited the places where you set your novel? If not, how did you create the atmosphere?
I have visited all the locations set around France in the novel, have wandered their streets and was enchanted by their atmosphere. I won't give away where they all are here, but each of these places were memorable as they were not only beautiful but were also evocative of earlier times. They were perfect for my novel. There is even a special 'musee' in the novel that Cat can't help but visit - and that really exists too! However, I can tell you that there is one location that is fictional. The village in Provence is a figment of my imagination. But, I have spent some time in Provence, and have visited so many villages there that my own Saint Revel could easily just slip into the landscape without any of us knowing it wasn't real.
I saw on another blog that one of your favourite writers is Hemingway. As he is rather a fixation of mine, I wondered what particular aspect/s of Hemingway's writing style you admire and have you worked to incorporate it/them into your writing?
Hemingway was one of the first writers to write in a more modern style, cutting out lengthy descriptions that were characteristic of the nineteenth century novel. I adore nineteenth century novels, but I re-read Hemingway's work a couple of years ago and was inspired again by his own wonderful descriptions, especially of Spain, in 'Fiesta: The Sun Also Rises,' and of Paris in 'A Moveable Feast.' I do love the way Hemingway writes dialogue. I don't think I consciously attempt to incorporate Hemingway's skills into my own writing, but sometimes, I look at aspects of my own work and see where I have been influenced by my favourite writers, including Hemingway.
Katherine Ann Porter, in the Paris Review, talks about the event of a story being like a stone thrown in water - she says it's not the event itself that's interesting, but rather the ripples the event creates in the lives of the characters. Would this be true of your story discovery, and the way your story unfolded?
I think this is an excellent analogy. I can say that I haven't finished with this story yet - it is still rippling away in my mind and has been doing so for a long time now. I am working on the second novel out of what will be three novels inspired by this story. As for my characters - finding that this apartment contained not only abandoned treasure, but a history that rippled through several generations and families - will lead them to chasing that elusive stone around a deep lake for a while yet!
Human motivations are very complex - why do we do what we do. Did it take a lot of brainstorming to work out the motivations of the main characters in your novel - especially Cat's? Did you sympathise in any way with her motives?
I always know my characters' motives at every level, from those aspects of themselves that they don't understand right up to the way in which they interact with others and the world around them. I spend much time thinking about this during the stages of research and planning. I think in order to sympathise with one's characters, the question to ask is what you would do if you were that character? This way, I empathise with Cat.
Would you describe yourself as a prolific writer? What are you working on now?
I write every day, for at least three or four hours - I would love to write more, and I confess that I measure out a day's enjoyment by how much time I've had to write! If I'm not writing I am often off in my own world thinking about my characters. The second novel inspired by the story of the Paris Time Capsule is set in Lake Geneva and Paris in 1934, and in a village just outside Berlin in the present. I am immersed in that now.

 For more information on the Paris Time Capsule please visit Ella at www.facebook.com/paristimecapsule or www.ellacarey.com

Thank you for having me here Denise. Your questions were most interesting!
I have a question for readers here today, although please feel free to just chat if you would prefer, and as well. I'd love to hear who your favourite writers are and what you admire about their work.

We have one free kindle copy of 'The Paris Time Capsule' to give away to one commentator!


So come on commenters! Have your say and you could win a free e-book here! Love mystery? Paris? Love? History? Then you'll love this book!
Want more?

Praise for Ella Carey:

'Ella Carey creates an almost impossibly romantic atmosphere.' Rachel Edwards, Review of Australian Fiction.

'I am so looking forward to the release of The Paris Time-Capsule. Ella Carey is one of the most talented writers I have ever worked with. Roll on release day!' Melanie Milburne, USA Today best selling author.
BUY LINKS:

Amazon UK        Australia
 India      New Zealand 
US and rest of the world      Amazon US







40 comments:

  1. I won this book on another blog. Can't wait to read it!

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    1. You'll love it Stephanie.

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    2. Hi there Stephanie! So great to see you here. I hope you enjoy the book! x

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    3. Hello Denise! Thanks so much for having me here. I adore your pictures; I feel very at home amongst all of this! xx

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  2. Fave writers: Hemingway (for teaching me to trim), Fitzgerald (for evoking the elegant in description), and Frank Herbert (for endless imagination). I am also drawn to books with Paris in the title. Good luck Ella!

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    1. What a wonderful list, D.G Hudson. I agree with you regarding these writers - there is something endlessly elegant about the early twentieth century writers. Paris is always a good idea! x

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  3. Hi Denise, Hi Ella, I've just finished reading THE PARIS TIME CAPSULE and I just wanted to say how much I enjoyed the book. The writing, the story, the whole experience was spellbinding. Congratulations Ella on such a wonderful read. I hope you write many more books.

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    1. Hi Maria, thank you so much for your lovely comment. I am thrilled that you enjoyed the book. Thank you dearly. xxx

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    2. Maria...so it's not just me who's raving !

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  4. HI, Denis, Hi, Ella,

    What a fantastic interview! And Ella, the premise of you books sounds most intriguing. It certainly has many of the elements I enjoy in a story.

    First, ANYTHING about Art....

    Second, I certainly enjoy stories set in Paris.... Love locations, especially ones I've visited.

    And third... anything with an air of mystery.

    I would totally enjoy your book!

    As for writer's who have influenced me. In my college years, I was obsesses with nineteenth century literature. Dickens is my absolute favorite.

    For the twentieth. I enjoyed Hemingway and Fitzgerald. But when I started reading Fantasy I devoured all of Terry Brooks stories. Amazing fantasy writer.

    Then I discovered a simple, magical, children's book which set the world on FIRE. J.K. Rowling influenced me so greatly, that I wrote my first fantasy novel. To this day and find myself rereading the HP series...

    Thanks for featuring Ella today, Denise.

    And, Ella,

    It was wonderful to meet you!

    All the best with your novel.

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    1. Hi Michael! Thanks so much for your wonderful thoughts!
      It sounds as if you share my taste for classic literature. Isn't that interesting that you then found that you loved to read fantasy! I find anything to do with Art wonderful too. I have Van Gogh's letters lined up to read next - I will be wallowing in that, so sad, such a genius - I find his story incredibly moving. Thanks for your comment. :)

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    2. HI, Ella,

      Van Gogh's letters.... that does sound really interesting. I just recently found out he died so young. Only like 35. Surprising. Most of the post impressionists live so much longer. I definitely should check them out...

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  5. Everyday for 3 or 4 hours is sure writing a ton, awesome.

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    1. Hi Pat, thank you! It's interesting - I think if it's hard to find the time to actually sit and write, there is still much benefit in spending time in your fictional world while doing other things. I tend to spend much time with my characters while I walk my dogs ... probably look quite mad and will try to avoid falling over something! :)

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  6. Hello again to Ella! Best of luck on your debut.

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    1. "Book review heaven at the end of each month" - thank you for that!

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  7. This got me downloading a sample of the book (my book money is used up for this month) that sounds delicious.

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    1. Hello Ann! Thanks so much and I'm glad you enjoyed the sample! xx

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  8. Hi again The Armchair Squid! Thank you for your kind wishes and thank you for calling in to visit here! xx

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  9. I loved The Paris Time Capsule. It was an intriguing and a thrilling read! Congratulations on the release Ella!

    Hi Denise *waving*

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    1. Hi Nas! Yes, one of the best I've read for awhile. Looking forward to Ella's next novel.

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    2. Thank you so much Nas and Denise! Working on the second novel as I write this ... xxx

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  10. Hi Denise and hi Ella,

    What an ideal scenario. You love Paris, Ella loves Paris and you are both Australian. Such superb symmetry.

    A time capsule that may unlock the future. Now, that has to intrigue and heighten the anticipation. An excellent premise, Ella..

    What a comprehensive in-depth interview. Truly outstanding. With the personal knowledge of Paris, the research, it makes for an even more fascinating situation.

    Thank you both for this. Wishing Ella much success with this. My favourite author is Penny the Jack Russell dog and modest internet superstar! She's hoping to pawblish, sorry, publish her book, titled "My First Bark." Observations of humans during her puppy years.

    A good day and congrats again.

    Gary :)

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    1. Hi there Gary! Thank you for your kind post and for your thoughts. I hope you enjoy the novel and wishing you all the best too!

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    2. Yes, Gary, always wonderful to hear from you and Penny.

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  11. After reading about this book on a recent Goodreads giveawy, I was already intrigued with this book, but now I'm even more intrigued. If I don't win it, I'm simply gonna have to buy it. It sounds fascinating. YES! I love Paris, mystery, love, and history, so this book sounds like a perfect fit for me.

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    1. No need to include me in the drawing for the book. I just bought it!

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    2. Hi Susan. So glad you bought it. You'll love it.

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    3. Hi Susan! Lovely to meet a fellow adorer of Paris, and all good things! The original story did contain everything I loved in one perfect package too, so I was hopelessly lost. Thank you for buying the book, and I do hope you enjoy it. xxx

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  12. Sounds like a great mystery! Great how the inspiration came from real life. Fascinating!

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    1. Thanks Carol. It was an interesting way to work ... inspired by a real life story. I have really attempted to make the fictional story believable too. I cut and cut and cut in order to fashion it all in the best way that I could. xx

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  13. Congratulations to Ella!

    Love the mixture of Paris, mystery and romance!

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    1. Hello there Kelly! Thank you so much for your kind words. The original mystery was just so evocative because it was set in Paris, and I confess, I am a romantic! xx

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  14. Congrats to Ella! The book sounds fantastic. Paris seems like it would be such a magical city, so I can see why you'd want to set a book there. And I like Hemingway too because of his more modern style.

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    1. Thanks for coming by Cherie. It is indeed a magical place to set a book.

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    2. Hi Cherie, thanks for your lovely comments! I did become quite swept away when writing about Paris. I think Hemingway did forge such a new way of writing. His descriptions are just beautiful. xx

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  15. I have this on my Kindle, on the first page, and can't wait to dive into it this summer.

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    1. I know you'll love it Medeia.

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    2. Hello Medeia! Great to see you here, and I hope you enjoy 'The Paris Time Capsule' this summer! xx

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