Interview Author Kerry Greenwood

Filed in Interview , Kerry Greenwood Posted on August 9, 2010 @ 10:00 am 7 comments
We are very happy to have author Kerry Greenwood here today. She write a mystery series about her extraordinary heroine Phryne Fischer and the next addition to this series will be out this October.  Please give her a warm welcome.

The Lit Lover: Can you please tell us a bit about yourself?
Kerry: I was born in Footscray in Australia in winter so long ago that word processors were called typewriters. I was the story teller of my family and have been telling stories ever since. I started writing novels for fun, to beguile the boredom of studying law at Melbourne University. There I met the love of my life, David Greagg, a wandering mathematician and wizard. He stayed and I kept writing novels through a carrer which included a lot of strange jobs and finally employment by the Legal Aid Commission. I work as an advocate in magistrates’ Courts. And I spend a lot of time staring blankly out the window. My story is that when I am doing that I am actually working and I’m sticking to it.
Somehow I forgot to have children but I do have cats. Three, at present.
The Lit Lover:  Crime seems to play a large role in your life in one way or another. You have acted as a criminal solicitor and written fiction and non-fiction books on the subject. What is it that draws you to crime?
Kerry: Originally it was because I was trying to rescue people from trouble, and crime is trouble. I think it’s transgressive. I am fascinated with the ways that people react to envirnments and problems. This can occasionally be simple ‘I hit him because he looked at me funny’ or sometimes remarkably complex ‘I hit him because I suddenly remembered…’ Endlessly interesting.
The Lit Lover: I have read all over the place that you have performed all sorts of work; singer, factory worker, solicitor. Do you think that this variety in your professional life has influenced your writing?
Kerry: Of course. Being a folkie was wonderful ( they gave me money and supplied me with cider just for singing – that was better than cleaning houses) and taught me about audiences and performance. Being a factory worker taught me how much I did not want to be a factory worker, a valuable lesson in itself. Everything is grist for a writer’s mill. Nothing is wasted…
The Lit Lover: I recently read one of the books in Phryne Fisher series and really loved it. When you wrote Cocaine Blues, did you know that it was going to be a series, and such a long and successful one at that?
Kerry: I thought I was going to write two of them, as I had a two book contract. The success of it all is a constant surprise to me.
The Lit Lover: I absolutely loved Li Chung and his very sexy relationship with Phryne. Where did the character Lin Chung come from? Was he inspired by anyone in particular?
Kerry: Now that would be telling…
The Lit Lover: Who do you identify more with, Phryne Fisher or Corinne Chapman?
Kerry: Corrina. She looks like me. Phryne is a hero. Corinna is a hard working intelligent ordinary human.
The Lit Lover: What is the hardest part of writing a series rather than a stand alone novel?
Kerry: Letting the character grow and change. Otherwise it is too boring for the writer (and the reader, come to think of it). Every time I think about a new novel I have to canvas, am I sick of this character? So far, I’m not. In fact I’m delighted when Phryne drops in to tell me another story.
The Lit Lover: Describe a typical day of writing? Are you a planner or pantser?
Kerry: Pantser. I just write what I want to say and then I stop, thus avoiding writer’s block and getting the furniture polished (though this is stretching the definition. David once found me washing the outside of the windows in the rain and accused ‘You’re stuck, aren’t you?” and he was right…). If I don’t feel like writing, I don’t. Plenty of other things to do. Brush the cats. Find the bandaids after brushing the cats. Dust the umbrella spokes. You know.
The Lit Lover: What motivates you to write? Has it changed over time?
Kerry: I would like to say, a deep philosophical urge to express myself, but mostly its a desire to tell the story before it gives me ulcers and, of course, money.
The Lit Lover: What are you reading at the moment and what would you say is the best book you have read this year?
Kerry: Imprimatur, by Monaldi and Sorti. A dense and fascinating novel about some people trapped in an inn by the black death. Can’t put it down.
The best book of the year so far is Much Obliged Jeeves by P G Wodehouse. The man was a master of timing and wit.
The Lit Lover: I have read somewhere that you own around 7000 books! Where do you find the space to keep them all?
Kerry: Everywhere, really, except the bathroom. I build a very BIG bookcase when I’m roused.
The Lit Lover: What are three reasons why people should read your books?
Kerry: wit, style, really good sex.
The Lit Lover: Thanks so much for taking the time to answer our questions.

About Susi

Susi is a geeky vegetarian from Gemany. She just finished university and now works as a civil engineer in steel construction. Besides her reading addiction she also knits like a maniac while listening to audiobooks. Susi also blogs at the Secret HEA Society.

Share This Post

Subscribe and stay up-to-date

Via E-Mail:

Follow us via RSS, twitter and facebook:


Join the Discussion
  • Darcia Helle August 9, 2010 at 10:06 am

    Great interview! I thought I had a book addiction but 7,000 books? I would have to move out, just to make room for them all! The Phryne Fischer series must go on my to-read list!

  • ColleenFL August 9, 2010 at 3:07 pm

    Wonderful interview! I love the Phryne Fisher series and the Corinna Chapman series. They're both great!

  • Becky (Page Turners) August 10, 2010 at 1:33 am

    Me too! I think it was you Colleen that suggested this author to me? I am so pleased. I have already purchased some of the Phryne Fisher series to give to friends for presents. I will have to make sure that I read some of the Corinna Chapman series as well.

    Darcia – I hope that they do go on your must read list. It is a bit like an Australian version of the No 1 Ladies Detective Agency. Lots of fun!

    ~ The Lit Lover

  • ColleenFL August 10, 2010 at 1:33 pm

    @Becky – Yep, that was me! I'm glad you're enjoying the books. I just picked up a copy of Forbidden Fruit, the latest Corinna Chapman book, today.

  • Marg August 10, 2010 at 9:59 pm

    I love the Phryne Fisher series, but haven't tried any of this authors other books yet. One day!

  • Becky (Page Turners) August 10, 2010 at 10:54 pm

    I haven't read any of the Corinna Chapman books eith Marg, but I definitely intend to 🙂

    Colleen – I am very jealous!

  • Andrea I August 16, 2010 at 5:16 pm

    I thought I was bad with all the books I own. I couldn't fit 7000 in my house.
    This is a new to me author and I'll have to check out her books.

Previous Post
Next Post
Luvo designed by Internet Marketing In conjunction with Template Wordpress , R4 DS , Best SUV.