Saturday, 14 January 2012

Blog Tour: India Dark Giveaway + Interview with the Author

Welcome to the India Dark book blog tour, stop number 6! For those of you unaware of this tour, below is the schedale of all the stops you have missed and that are to come...

India Dark, written by Kirsty Murray, is set in 1910 about a theatre company that is travelling around the world. I loved it (review here), and here is a synopsis below for more information...

After reading this book, the answers below written by Kirsty Murray are really interesting and I hope you find them interesting too...

How did you come up with the idea of India Dark?
I’ve always been interested in working kids, especially kids who have worked in the performing arts. Child performers have featured in several of my earlier novels so in many ways the idea for India Dark novel grew out of years of researching the lives of young artists. In 2001 I read an essay by a theatre historian called ‘Children Half-Price’ that outlined the last disastrous tour of a famous Australian theatre troupe. It was the trigger for starting on the long journey of researching and then writing India Dark.

For someone who isn't sure about reading India Dark, how would you describe it?
India Dark is essentially about truth and lies and how we interpret what happens to us. I suppose part of what makes it compelling is that is based on a true story. In July 1909, twenty-nine Australian children climbed aboard a steamer at Port Melbourne and set off on a two-year world tour. The children were singers, dancers and young comedians aged 7-17 years. Their parents had signed away their custody to the manager of the theatre troupe. On a hot Madras night eight months later, the tour ended in chaos and scandal when twenty-four of the children walked out on their manager refusing to travel further.

What is your favourite part about writing?
I love getting inside my characters’ skins. You only have one life that you can live inside your own body but when you write, you get to experience endless other ways of being in the world.

What is your least favourite part about writing?
Sitting. I hate having to sit for hours on end. I cope with it by getting right inside the story and forgetting about my body but at the end of a long day of writing my neck and shoulders are really sore.

If you could meet any character out of your own books, who would it be and why?
I feel as though I have met all the characters from my own books. Sometimes I dream about them and when I’m writing about a group of characters it’s as though those characters are my constant companions.
I guess if I had to pick only one to spend a bit more time with it would be Bridie O’Connor from one of my earlier novels, Bridie’s Fire (Allen & Unwin, 2003). But it’s a funny thing about characters you create – they often have doppelgangers in the real world.
A few years ago a photographer who was designing the cover of one of my novels - Walking Home with Marie-Claire (Allen & Unwin 2002) - phoned me and said he had seen my fictional character Marie-Claire walking along the beach near his house. He approached her mother and asked if it was okay to take her photo and then he sent me some photos of her. He hadn’t met her before that day on the beach and I had never seen anyone quite like her except in my imagination and yet she really was identical to the character I’d described in my novel. It was spooky. She wound up being one of the cover models on the book.

When you are not writing, what do you like to do?
Read. I know that’s totally predictable but its true. I became a writer because I’m passionate about reading. I’m also a very social animal and love to travel and spend time with my family and friends.

Have you got any tips for aspiring writers?
Read and read and read and when you’re sick of reading, watch a movie, and then go for a walk and then read some more. Read every day and read outside your comfort zone. Read different genres. Read books that make you feel uncomfortable. Read history, philosophy, science and poetry as well as fiction. Discover your nearest library and your state or national library and spend time there browsing and daydreaming. And write.

Are you planning/writing anything new?
I’m working on a new YA historical novel set in 1919. It’s about four sisters and what happened to them when WWI ended. Their only brother died on the Western Front and the youngest sister, Tiney Flynn, is determined that the family will travel to France to visit his grave. I’m hoping to have it finished in time for it to be published in early 2014.

Thank you, Kirsty! Now you get a chance to read this amazing novel by entering the giveaway below! Yay - free stuff!

  • UK residents only
  • Deadline is 27th January 2012 at 8pm.
  • You do not have to be a follower, but if you do become then it would be very appreciated. :)
  • The winner is picked at random so there is a fair chance for everyone.
  • Fill in the Rafflecopter form below!

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. This looks like a fantastic book! And I really enjoyed reading the interview - great questions and great answers!

  2. Great interview! This book looks really good! :D

  3. Fab interview! And i love your blog

    Jessica from Booked Up!
    :) xxx

  4. Cliona - It is a brilliant book, I think you would really enjoy it! :)

    Rachel - Great answers, wern't they? Hope you enjoy it when you get your hands on it!

    Jessica - Aw, thank you! Love your blog too :)


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