Illana Fox has so far had three novels published by Orion Books: ‘The Making Of Mia,’ ‘Spotlight,’ and ‘All That Glitters.’. Her fourth will be delivered in the spring of 2014. Ilana is also a writer and has had features in several newspapers including the Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail, and the Evening Standard, and she also had her own technology column in NMA magazine. She currently writes a monthly column for ABSOLUTELY DULWICH and ABSOLUTELY SOUTH-EAST magazines.
1.What got you into writing? I’ve always been a big reader – I much prefer to read a book than to watch TV: I don’t even know why I have one as it’s never turned on! – but there was a point when I was struggling to find the sort of book I wanted to read. So I decided to write it myself…
2.What is a usual writing day like for you? There is no usual sort of day, but I generally go through what I wrote the day before, edit it a fair bit, and then move onto the next scene or chapter. Some days the words flow, and other days it’s incredibly difficult. But I’ve learned that if I’m struggling then there’s something not right with the direction the story is going.
3.Do you get writers block? If so, how do you overcome it? Honestly, I don’t know. If I sit down to write I’m mostly able to do it, but I need to be in the right frame of mind – if there’s something going wrong in my life I struggle to get into the right mindset.
4.Are you a plotter/planner when it comes to writing a story? Yes. Actually, I’m doing my rewrites on my third novel, and every single point I need to address is in a spreadsheet divided up by character / time frame / and how I’m going to resolve the issue. Novels can get fairly complicated so if you don’t plan things in advance the you’re going to get a bit lost!
5.What was the publishing process like for you,& any advice to aspiring authors? I’ve been really lucky with my career so far – I love my agents and my editor is fantastic. My advice is for authors to read a lot, write a lot, and to never give up.
6.What has been your highlight since becoming a published author? Seeing strangers reading my books is always a massive highlight, as are emails from readers – when people take the time to let you know that they loved one of your books it’s brilliant, the best feeling in the world.
7. Can you share a little of your most recent book with us? And any other books of yours, if you wish. It’s still a work in progress, so I’d rather not if you don’t mind! I never let people read my drafts until I’m 100% happy with them.
8.Apart from writing, what do you do in your spare time? Lots! I’m a consultant, I write a column for Absolutely Magazine, and I’m into rifle shooting. I’m also trying to improve my swimming and I’m at the gym about four times a week right now.
9.If you could trade places with any other person for a week, famous or not famous, living or dead, real or fictional, who would it be & why? Nobody has ever asked me this question before! I’d really like to go back in time to go and be at aged 16 again – I’d love to go and experience that feeling of having the whole world in front of you and knowing you could do anything you wanted. Of course, I still feel like that now … but I’m a bit more jaded than I was back then!
10.Do you have anything that you want to say to your readers? I am SO SORRY that it’s taking me FOREVER to finish my fourth novel! For some reason I’ve really struggled with this one, but I hope it will be worth it!