Today, I have Michelle Vernal who is going to discuss where and how she finds her inspiration when writing. Her latest book The Travellers Daughter, which is available on ebook just now or comes out in paperback in June. Right now the ebook is only 99p, so if you are looking for an Easter Read, why not order it from Amazon UK.Do check out both her post and her book, while giving her a warm welcome.
‘Finding My Insperation’ by Michelle Wernal
I hold my hand up to being a magpie of the highest order when it comes to all things vintage. My passion for the preloved is an inherited thing. I get it from my mum who calls the Salvation Army shop, the Sally Boutique and is forever coming home with her little treasures. Some are useful, some are pretty and some she decides to pass on to me. It’s been proven you know, that shopping releases mood-lifting endorphins. The act of purchasing keeps your brain nimble and boosts your immune system. Don’t ask me how any of this works but the good news is I’m right on track for not getting so much as a sniffle this winter. I mean, how much more powerful must all these brain empowering goodies be when you’re not only shopping but getting a bargain in the process!
My treasures are conversation starters. I like to imagine the secret lives they’ve watched unfold from their dusty pews before they became surplus to requirement and wound up waiting for a new home on a thrift shop shelf. That is of course where I come in riding up not on a white charger but in a pale blue Toyota to rescue them. I’m fortunate too that when I bring these little collectibles to their new home, my husband can see the value in them. Or so I like to think, knowing hubby it’s more likely he’s enamored with the pittance paid! Either way, he never complains at the bits and pieces that once made up someone else’s home, now making up ours.
It’s one of these interesting recycled gems that inspired The Traveller’s Daughter. The black and white print called Lovers at Avignon caught my eye one morning at the Sally Boutique. It’s now hung on the wall behind our bed, and each time I looked at it, it posed the question as to who the couple is sharing a kiss in it. They’re dressed in 1950’s fashion, both with bicycles, the hazy ramparts enclosing the ancient city of Avignon behind them. Google or Gurdle as my mum, the treasure hunter, calls it didn’t unearth much when I searched the print’s title. To my eyes, the couple’s story seemed unfinished. I mean what happened when they broke away from each other? I’ll never know for sure, but then I don’t deal in facts.
It was when I spotted a book at our local library called Tinkers no More by renowned photographer Alen MacWeeney that the characters of Rosa and Michael began to form in my mind. The book was a collection of black and white photographs Alen captured during his involvement with the Irish Traveller’s from the mid-sixties until the early seventies – a period of change in their culture. I contacted Alen, and he very kindly got back to me putting me in touch with a delightful man called Mervyn Ennis. Mervyn shared his childhood memoirs of the Irish Traveller’s camping on the outskirts of the village where he grew up with me. It was those tales that helped bring Rosa and Michael’s story to life. So you see I did find treasure at the Sally Boutique the day I bought my black and white print because along with a library book and a helpful Irish chap, the enigmatic couple frozen in time on my bedroom wall helped inspire my book, The Traveller’s Daughter.
THE TRAVELLER’S DAUGHTER
Release Date: 24th March 2017 (ebook) / 01st June 2017 (Paperback
Published by: Harper Impulse
Genre: Historical Romance
ROSA’S PAST IS HER PANDORA’S BOX AND THE LID IS ABOUT TO BE LIFTED …
‘If you lie down with dogs you’ll rise with fleas’ – Irish Proverb
Rosa Sorenson’s conversation was often peppered with what she liked to think were wise sayings from her homeland. It was these conversational clangers that gave her daughter Kitty the only clue as to a childhood her mother refused to speak of. When she passes away suddenly, Kitty is resigned to never knowing the girl her mother once was. Then out of the blue she receives an invitation that will take her on a journey into the past Rosa never shared with her.
Renowned photographer, Christian Beauvau has been commissioned to recreate the iconic print, Midsummer Lovers the shot that made him famous fifty years ago. It’s the first Kitty has heard of the photograph and she’s amazed to learn it features her mother as a young woman alongside a man called Michael in the Provencal town of Uzes, France. Together with Michael’s nephew she has been invited to pose for the anniversary shot. Leaving her fledgling London cupcake business in the hands of her flatmate and to the consternation of her ex-Damien who has decided he wants her back and doesn’t deserve a second chance, she accepts. In doing so not only can she put some much needed space between her and Damien but she might just be able to heal the wounds of the past and find love in the process.
Michelle Vernal is an author with Harper Impulse UK who loves a happy ending. She lives near the Southern Alps in New Zealand with her family and three black cats. One of whom was invited to live with them, two of whom were not but decided to move in anyway. Her novel The Traveller’s Daughter was shortlisted for an award with Love Stories UK before being picked up by Harper Collins UK.
It was released in ebook format on 24 March 2017 and will be released in paperback throughout all major UK books store on 1 June 2017. It is being distributed in New Zealand bookstores from the 1st of October 2017. Her latest novel The Matchmaker is due for release later in 2017.
To date, Michelle has published four novels all of which are written with her trademark humour and warmth..