Tuesday, 3 April 2018

Johana Gustawsson's Writing Toolkit

WRITING TOOLKIT gives you an idea of an author's writing process through the tools they use. The tools can be anything (real or virtual) that they think is essential for their writing - serious, fun or even a fetish (that they're willing to own up to)! 

I am delighted to welcome 





Keeper is being published in paperback on 28 April 2018 by Orenda Books. 

What would I do without my earplugs! As my twin babies are at home during my writing hours (be reassured: I don’t abandon them in their cot, they are either with their nanny or their granny), I need to be able to cut the umbilical cord and earplugs are the only thing that works! If not, I would be rushing out of my office at every giggle, laugh or cry! Ok, let’s not mention the cries…

As I used to spend a lot of time warming my morning coffee or my afternoon teas (I’m addicted to very sugary builder’s tea!), I bought a thermos. It’s permanently hanging out on my desk!

Phone-free zone
This is key for the writing to go well: my phone needs to be far away from me! If not, I keep on checking it: messages sent by family and friends, social media feeds, emails… I have to keep the distractions away! I only connect in the morning before work and in the evening. My family knows that in case of emergency, they call the landline!

My motivation kit
When my mind wanders, I have two helpers to put it back on track: I have a few books of, and about, Agatha Christie on one side of my desk and, on the other side, I have a picture of my wonderful grandmother, who passed away last year. Whenever I daydream, make up lists for household duties, or start falling asleep after a rough night with the babies, the Queen of Crime or my dear granny suddenly stares at me and I’m back at work straight away!

My red notebook
I am old fashioned: when taking notes, making corrections or having an idea, I write it down in my notebook. It was a gift from my husband when I signed my first book contract 'in solo' back in 2014. I keep the lovely cover and just change the notebooks: one per novel! On number 3 now...

My office
I can’t write in cafés, libraries or trains… I really need to be in my office! To do research or edits, it’s different - I generally work outside and I actually get inspired a lot by listening to private conversations!


About Johana Gustawsson
Born in 1978 in Marseille and with a degree in Political science, Johana Gustawsson has worked as a journalist for the French press and television. She married a Swede and now lives in London. She was the co-author of a bestseller, On se retrouvera, published by Fayard Noir in France, whose television adaptation drew over seven million viewers in June 2015. Block 46, her first thriller, has now been sold to fourteen countries and is published in the UK by Orenda Books. Johana is working on the third book in the Roy & Castells series.

Find Johana Gustawsson on her website, FB page and on Twitter - @JoGustawsson

About Keeper

Published by Orenda Books (Ebook - out now; Paperback - 28 April 2018)

Publisher's description
Whitechapel, 1888: London is bowed under Jack the Ripper’s reign of terror. 
London, 2015: actress Julianne Bell is abducted in a case similar to the terrible Tower Hamlets murders of some ten years earlier, and harking back to the Ripper killings of a century before. 
Falkenberg, Sweden, 2015: a woman’s body is found mutilated in a forest, her wounds identical to those of the Tower Hamlets victims. With the man arrested for the Tower Hamlets crimes already locked up, do the new killings mean he has a dangerous accomplice, or is a copy-cat serial killer on the loose? 
Profiler Emily Roy and true-crime writer Alexis Castells again find themselves drawn into an intriguing case, with personal links that turn their world upside down. 

Read a snippet of my review: 'Johana Gustawsson certainly isn't afraid to tackle shocking issues and leave her readers reeling... I couldn't stop reading, totally engrossed from the first page, as the book took me on a twisty rollercoaster ride.'

Read the rest of my review here.

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