My guest on the Quirky Genre this week is Peter Perrin who tells us how he found himself writing romances about people ‘not in the first flush of youth’.
Until just under five years ago all I had ever written was a few poems and some short stories for my children. Unlike most fiction authors I hadn’t always want to write, let alone be an author. Nor did I read avidly, let alone read romance. Indeed, until I started to write Grace’s Turmoil I had never even read a single novel in my chosen genre, Romance.
So, what started me down this path you might ask? Well, what started me writing a novel was when my then fourteen-year-old granddaughter self-published two novels on Amazon. I was very impressed and thought ‘If she isn’t too young to write a novel maybe I’m not too old.’ I was sixty-nine at the time.
What genre to write in was the first quandry I faced. Then I was inspired. I wanted to write something that would show older people in a positive light, so what better genre than romance. I wanted to depict characters as being capable of falling in love and having emotional and physical relationships. The last thing I wanted was to show them with one foot in the grave, waiting for the grim reaper to claim them.
I initially tried setting the novel in a Care Home but was soon advised this was impracticable, due to problems of security and restrictions on the movement of elderly residents. So, I looked around at alternatives and came up with the idea of setting the book in a retirement village. And that’s how,The Grange Retirement Village came into existence.
I didn’t want to go the traditional publishing route as I felt I was too old to spend years trying to get an agent and then a publisher, especially as an unknown author. Although there are many great books that have been self-published I didn’t want to go that route. I wanted to know that my work was of an acceptable professional standard.
So, that left me having to find an independent publisher who would take me on. Through a fellow writer in a Yahoo group I found Devine Destinies and sent them a sample to see if it was the sort of work they published. They quickly said it was right for them but needed a lot of work including reducing the length of each chapter. So I set to work and submitted the full manuscript almost a year later. To my surprise and delight they gave me a contract and the book began its journey through their editing and proofing process. Ten months later the book had been revamped, edited, proofed, rewritten and was ready for publication, with a brilliant cover.
Devine Destinies only produce e-books but once the book was with third-parties as well it became available from Amazon in paperback form. The thrill of holding a copy in my hand was only beaten by being asked for the first time to sign a copy for a fan.
Peter Perrin writes sweet, seasoned romances involving larger-than-life mature characters who will make you rethink your views on older people in a positive way. His characters are mature in age but not necessarily in their behaviour. They may not be in the first flush of youth but that doesn’t stop some of them acting like hormonal teenagers.
Peter was born in Romford, in the county of Essex, near London, England. For nearly twenty years he has lived with his wife of almost forty years in a quiet suburb of Swindon, in the county of Wiltshire, in England. He is a father and grandfather. Now retired Peter’s interests are Writing, Carp Fishing, and (despite being in his early seventies) PlayStation games.
His favourite quote is “Youth passes, but with luck, immaturity can last a lifetime.”
Grace’s Turmoil is available here
For more about Peter see his blog https://peterperrin.blog/