Today I am proud to bring to you a fab Q&A with debut author of Seed (published 16th April 2015), Lisa Heathfield!
I have to admit I was over the moon when Electric Monkey contacted me and asked me if I would like to be part of the blog tour for this book! My fingers could not type fast enough to reply “Yes please”! I LOVED this book so much! Most of you may actually already know this from my constant ramblings and saying “read it immediately!” tweets on twitter!
It’s been a few weeks since I read Seed and the feelings I had whilst reading the book and after finishing the book are still with me now! The sign of a fab book don’t you think?
You can read my spoiler free review of Seed here
I was lucky enough to meet Lisa back in February at the Electric Monkey Blogger Day (you can find out what we got up to here ) and since then we have kept in regular contact and managed to have a catch up at the UKYABA in March. I can honestly say Lisa is so so lovely and it feels like I have known her longer than I have. I feel so privileged to have met her and get to know her.
So join me talking to Lisa all about Pearl, Papa S and the world of Seed, more about Lisa and an infamous trip to Tesco!
A huge thank you to Electric Monkey for having me (especially Maggie for putting up with my fan girl emails!) and another huge thank you to Lisa for answering all my probing questions!
Hi Lisa. Welcome to Tales Of Yesterday. Thank you so much for featuring on my blog…I am unbelievably excited and over the moon to have you here!
*Does an excited wiggle*
Firstly, thank you for writing such a stunning and beautifully written book with Seed…..it took my breath away and broke my heart…a precious gem of a book!
*Holds Seed next to my heart and goes misty eyed*
I have been recommending this book non stop since I read it and it is going to be in my top ten on books I’ve read in 2015 at the end of the year!
Can you tell us a little about Seed?
Seed is a small, idyllic community. They live in beautiful surroundings, grow all the crops they need to survive and are happy to be cut-off from the Outside. They do not follow a religion – instead they worship Nature and obey the rules of their revered leader, Papa S. On the surface, it could be described as a utopia, yet not far beneath there’s a darkness which threatens to destroy them all.
You can find my spoiler free review here
( Warning I may confess my love of this book quite a lot during this review! 🙂 )
What inspired you to write the story of Pearl and the community of Seed?
I’m not sure where it came from! I was writing another book, when Pearl appeared to me and asked that I write her story instead. With her, came Seed. I had no idea where the story was going to lead – I just held my pen and as I wrote, it was as though I was reading it for the first time.
Do you see yourself in any of the characters in Seed or have you used any of your own experiences in the story?
I don’t see myself in any particular character, although I can definitely see myself being tempted by the good parts of a world like Seed. Although I live in a city, I do also love the more simple life. And I worry about what modern living is doing to our planet – I don’t think it would hurt if we all paid a bit more attention to Nature.
The scenery and location of Seed reads so beautifully…was this based on a particular place?
The location of Seed really is beautiful. I loved spending so much time there (before the darkness, of course). As with Pearl, it came to me ‘fully formed’. So, although it’s not based on a particular place, it was always completely vivid to me.
How do you think you would react if you were cut off from the outside world, living in a world or community where you are dependant upon Mother Nature?
Part of me thinks that I would love it. The modern world does fry my brain slightly, so it’s definitely appealing to think about a place without computers and mobile phones! And I love the idea of a strong community, especially a self-sufficient one. However, I think in reality I would find it too claustrophobic. I would need to have a bit of space. And if I ended up in a community with someone like Papa S, or Kindred John, that would be pretty horrific.
As a reader I hated Papa S with a passion…did you find writing his character hard?
He’s hideous, but I didn’t find writing his character difficult. I think it’s because I genuinely believe that I don’t really do the writing – I just hold the pen and my writing spirit does the rest. I always knew that he was horrible, but it’s only reading back now that I realise quite how creepy he is.
Without spoilers I loved the story you told at the Electric Monkey Blogger Day about when you were in Tesco and an idea for Seed came to you….can you tell us about that?
Well, I didn’t plot Seed, but I think that it was often rumbling round in my subconscious. One day, I’d just come out of the supermarket and was wheeling the trolley to my car, when, like a bolt of lightning, I suddenly realised what was going to happen to one of the characters. I was so shocked – I’d love to see a recording of my reaction! I stopped short and I’m pretty sure I yelled something out.
I would have loved to have seen your reaction too! Especially when you have since told me which part of the book this was about!
*scours CCTV to find Lisa’s reaction*
I would love to Seed on the big screen! If you could cast your characters in a big Hollywood film adaptation who would you choose?
It would be amazing, wouldn’t it! I’m going to cheat a bit with some of my answers, because on the blog ‘Forever young Adults’, Jennie chose three characters almost perfectly.
Papa S was Jason Isaacs, Ellis was Douglas Booth and Pearl was Ella Purnell. For me, Pearl is slightly more like Emily Kinney. Mika Boorem would make a brilliant Kate and Marion Cotillard could play Elizabeth. The hardest one for me to cast is Jack – I think Nolan Gerard Funk comes the closest (plus, he has a great name…)
Nolan Gerard Funk
*Nods approvingly at all of these choices!*
Being a debut author can you tell us a little about yourself?
Well, I live in Brighton with my husband and three sons. I used to teach English in a secondary school, spending the last couple of years when I was there specialising in teaching hearing-impaired children. I grew up in a large family and was always reading and writing. From a young age, I dreamt of being an author, but up until recently no one had ever read my writing. Never in a million years did I think I’d be good enough. So the fact that I’m being published feels extra unbelievable to me.
Do you have any strange writing habits?
I have to use bic biros – I don’t seem to write so well with other biros! Blue, or black, depending on the book I’m writing. I choose the notebook carefully – it has to ‘feel’ right. And if I think I need to get to know the characters better, I take them out of the house with me. I know it sounds weird, but it’s not unusual for them to help me out with the shopping…
Recently I asked some lovely UKYA authors their thoughts about does music influence their book or their characters. Did music have any influence in Seed?
I like to write without music – I love silence! And I didn’t find myself connecting any music to Seed, as the community is so detached from any form of ‘popular culture’. However, there is music within it and I love the way that Ellis’ piano playing unlocks something in Pearl.
These are some of my favourite scenes from Seed!
Thank you so much Lisa for taking the time to answer these questions and feature on Tales Of Yesterday. It really is an honour and I can’t wait to read more books by Lisa Heathfield in the very near future!
Also another huge thank you to Electric Monkey for having me on the tour and providing me with a copy of Seed !
I urge everyone to read this stunning debut!
On another note Lisa is a huge fan of Jennifer Niven, author of All The Bright Places and with the help of Electric Monkey who listened to my idea and got me a copy of the book quite quickly I managed to give a copy of Seed to Jennifer Niven at a recent event in Birmingham and get a picture for Lisa!
To say Lisa was over the moon is an understatement!
I also bought Lisa a copy of All The Bright Places and got it signed for her! One happy author!
Thanks to Maggie and Emily at Electric Monkey who helped me organise this and make Lisa’s day!
You can find out more about Seed which is released on 16th April 2015 or buy a copy here
Or why not follow Lisa on Twitter – @LisaHeathfield
For a cover reveal of Lisa’s second novel Paper Butterflies see here
Follow the rest of this awesome blog tour for Seed!
Have you read Seed? What did you think? Has my review or this Q&A convinced you to go and grab a copy? Isn’t the cover so pretty! I would love to hear from you! Why not leave a comment by using the reply button at the top of this post or tweet me on twitter using @chelleytoy !
Happy hiding from Papa S….he really is THAT creepy!