Friday, February 4, 2022

Friday Paula Martin is Visiting and Talking About Who She Was Before #BWLAuthor #MFRWAuthor #Teacher #Mystery #history


1. What were you before you became an author? Did this influence your choices as a writer?

I was a high school history teacher for many years, and my earliest novels (published in the 1960s/70s) did have teachers as the main characters. However, in the 12 novels that have been published since 2011, only one female character has been a school teacher. The other ‘heroines’ have included a cruise ship tour guide, a journalist, a ballet dancer, a cook, a photographer, a Victorian seamstress – and five actors. Maybe the latter reflects my lifelong interest in musical theatre, even though I can’t act, sing or dance! The male characters have been equally varied, ranging from an archaeologist to a veterinary surgeon, which required quite a lot of research.

As for history, some of my contemporary novels did feature aspects of history, especially those set in Ireland e.g. the potato famine, the 1920s civil war, and the forced adoption of unmarried mothers’ babies in the 1950s/60s. My latest novel is my first wholly historical novel, but is a result of my research into my family history, rather than the history I used to teach.


2. Are you genre specific or general? I don’t mean major genres but subdivisions or romance, mystery or paranormal.

My early books were contemporary romances, concentrating on the relationship between the two main characters and whatever problems I chose to throw at them. It was when I wrote a novel set in Egypt (present-day) that I first introduced a sub-plot of mystery/intrigue. Since then most of my novels have included an element of intrigue which has affected the main characters in various ways.


3. What is your latest release?

Despite being a history teacher for many years, I always said I wouldn’t write a historical novel, mainly because I was all too aware of the amount of research needed to ensure any novel was historically accurate. However, my latest release is a historical novel, set in the mid-19th century, which involved research into homes, fashions, food, etc. in that era. ‘A Family’s Secrets’ was published by Books We Love in February, and is based (loosely) on my g-g-grandparents. It is set in Liverpool and the Isle of Man, as my g-g-grandfather was a captain with the Isle of Man Steam Packet Company.


4. What are you working on now?

I’m working on the second book of my ‘Follow Your Heart’ series. The main character is Lizzie, the daughter of Betsy and John, the two main characters in ‘A Family’s Secrets.’ It is set in the 1870s, and features Lizzie’s fight on behalf of people whose homes are threatened with demolition, as well as her dilemma about which of the two men in her life she can trust.


5. Do your reading choices influence your choice of a writing career?

I have very eclectic reading choices. Over the years, I think I have read most genres apart from horror and sci-fi, which don’t interest me. Nowadays, I do read some ‘romance’ novels, but also historical, (mainly late medieval), First and Second World War novels, and family sagas. However, I don’t think I’m influenced by what I read, as my ideas for stories tend to come from somewhere in my mind.


6. Where can we find you?

Amazon author page:





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