We believe everybody is going to need a copy of 'The Visiting Book' on their shelves this year! We loved being able to check in with Becky - in this Q&A she talks about how this book came to fruition with her influences from Yorkshire and North Lincolnshire, along with her talents as an Illustrator and where she draws inspiration from (and the requests for a book 2)!
"I was inspired by the desire to get out and about more and to see more in my local area, I asked my followers on Instagram for ideas and suggestions."
Have you always wanted to be a writer?
RD: I haven’t always wanted to be a writer but my goal was to illustrate a book, I didn’t realise it would be my own though!
What are the tools of the trade?
RD: Bristol board and Micron Pens!
Where do you find your inspiration?
RD: I was inspired by the desire to get out and about more and to see more in my local area, I asked my followers on Instagram for ideas and suggestions.
Tell us about your first published book and what was the journey like?
RD: I chose to self publish as I didn’t want to be influenced by funders or backers for this project in particular. I wanted to celebrate areas of beauty as well as places of interest. To do this, I used Kickstarter to raise the funds, this was a reassuring step in the journey that assured me that other people also wanted to see this book released. Using Partnership Publishing meant the scary bits were taken out of my hands and I could just concentrate on the content.
Where can readers purchase your books?
· Homestead Store – Paragon Arcade, Hull
· The Artisan Coffee and Art – Newland Avenue, Hull
· The Rabbit Hole – Brigg, North Lincolnshire
· The Ropewalk – Barton upon Humber, North Lincolnshire
· Waters Edge Visitors Centre – Barton upon Humber, North Lincolnshire
· Online retailers
Are there any secrets from the book (that aren’t in the blurb), you can share with your readers?
RD: I am still to visit some of the places in the book! I got distracted making the book, the recommendation came from my trusted social media followers.
What do you hope your readers take away from this book?
RD: I hope this becomes an heirloom piece for individuals and families, a place to record memories and moments. It is also a great conversation starter. The aim of this book is to feel like you have taken someone’s sketch book and you are adding to it.
Your book is based in Yorkshire and North East Lincolnshire. Why did you choose that as the setting for your book?
RD: It's where I live – I made this book primarily for me, so my house was the pin in the map and I drew a circle with a maximum 2 hour travel radius to get in the book it had to be in the circle!
Tell us about the process for coming up with the cover.
RD: I love to create intricate artwork and an all over pattern I am often inspired by William Morris. There were a number of versions until we arrived at the right one – its started as black and white and then the colour got brighter. We wanted something that would stand out on a book shelf!
What books or authors have most influenced your own writing?
RD: I am more influenced by illustrators particularly the work of Quentin Blake, Watkins, Aubrey Beardsley and Joyce Lancaster Brisley. I love black and white pen and ink work the best.
What book is currently on your bedside table?
RD: 'The Thursday Murder Club' by Richard Osmond
Do you listen to audiobooks? If so, are there any you’d recommend?
RD: Yes! I consume most books as a blend between audio and reading I particularly enjoyed 'My Sister the Serial Killer' as an audiobook!
What do you like about audiobooks?
RD: You can take them anywhere! I listen to them when I am doing house work and the supermarket shop!
What is the best part of your day?
RD: Evenings I am most creative at night!
If you could choose three people to invite for a dinner party, who would they be and why?
RD: Johnny Depp because I have loved him since I was 16, Liza Tarbuck because I think if we met we would be great friends and Elton John so I could sing Crocodile Rock with him.
What do you like to do when you are not writing?
RD: I am learning to play the Clarinet so when I am not creating I am playing.
Do you have any new series planned?
RD: I have already started on a list for a book 2 and people have asked for one that covers the North East and North West!
Visit the website! https://www.thevisitingbook.co.uk/