Leigh Holland’s Interview with Laura Pritchard

Leigh Holland’s Interview with Laura Pritchard

I’m delighted today to be able to host Laura Pritchard, author of “Monarchy”, on my author spotlight! Thanks for being here, Laura!

Thanks so much for having me Leigh!

Leigh: Tell us a little about yourself.

My name is Laura Pritchard and I am from a small town in the South Wales Valleys in the United Kingdom. I am a teacher by day and an author by night! I currently teach music to children who have been expelled from school. I have written for as long as I can remember! I have distinct memories of filling notebooks with stories from a very young age.

Leigh: “Monarchy” seems to me to be similar in some ways to other YA Dystopian fiction, such as “The Hunger Games”. How much have other Dystopian writers influenced your work? What are your favorite novels in this genre?

I have always read young adult fiction as I found myself unable to move on from that genre. My favorite authors like John Marsden and JK Rowling are still firm additions to my bookshelves. Reading so much YA meant that my novels naturally fell into that genre and dystopia is one of my favorite YA adult settings. I think that my favorite modern dystopia is The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins as it has all of the elements of a classic dystopia and her world building skills are first class. I came up with the initial story for my novel about 2 years ago and have put all of my time and effort into perfecting it since then. Being a mum to 2 young children and a secondary school Music teacher alongside means I have become a professional life juggler and I try to fit as much writing time as I can!

Leigh: What draws you to the Dystopian genre?

One of the first dystopian novels I ever read was The Handmaids Tale by Margaret Attwood. I was assigned this book for the reading section of my English Literature A Level and read it so many times during that time but always managed to find something different after each read. It is what introduced me to the idea of dystopia and how worlds can be controlled in so many ways and also taught me about the theme of rebellion. It is definitely something that has featured as a huge inspiration for Monarchy, my first novel.

Leigh: Which actors would you like to see playing the major characters in “Monarchy” if there were a movie made of it?

What an amazing question! I can imagine Constance being played by a soft, willowy actress but with a firm mind. Someone like Emma Watson or Amanda Seyfried. For Calloway, someone quite self-assured who would be able to throw some power into the role. If we are talking ideal world then it would have to Ryan Gosling!

Leigh: What are some of your favorite films and tv shows?

I love to watch (and read!) gritty crime dramas. My partner and I have recently finished watching Designated Survivor starring Keifer Sutherland. Similarly, I’m have just finished the second book in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo trilogy by Steig Larrson. I love complex crime plots that keep you guessing until the very end. Similarly, I hope that my books take on that characteristic. I love cliff hangers and have ended Monarchy on a huge cliff hanger. I want the audience to be thinking about what happens after the novel has ended.

Leigh: What’s your favorite motivational quote?

Tying into my earlier answers, it has to be “Nolite te bastardes carborundorum” which is taken from The Handmaids Tale. It has resurfaced recently due to the novel being made into a TV drama in the US. It is definitely a motto for my life and for writing in particular. Stay positive no matter what. This is such a tough industry to break into and you will be knocked down time and time again. The main thing is to have belief in what you are doing and to keep going as there will be so many points when everything seems worthless. Have passion in what you write and use that passion to drive you onward with your ideas.

Leigh: Why did you choose the Indie route over traditional publishing? What advantages did you find in this publishing route?

I self-published simply for the fact that I wanted people to have access to my novel. I have so much love for it and wanted to be able to share that with people. To me, having my work read is much more important than having my work sold and having reviews showing people sharing that love for my writing makes me feel like I have succeeded.

Leigh: If you could meet one famous person from history, who would it be and why?

Again, another good question! I’d love to meet Anne Frank. I recently holidayed in Budapest and spent a lot of time visiting WW2 sites. In particular, something that struck me was the Jewish graveyard which was the burial place of so many young children who were killed in the Holocaust. The fact that Anne Frank wrote about her experiences during such an awful time is heroic and I find her novel fascinating.

Leigh: What are your hobbies?

In my spare time, I run a children’s choir and an adult’s choir. I love singing and arranging music so it’s one of my favorite things to do. We sing in the local community in churches, schools and private venues. We’ve also ventured into weddings this year! I also read as much as I can. Books are an evening pastime for me and I prefer a good book than sitting down to watch TV!

Leigh: How can readers discover more about you and your work?

My novel is available on Amazon and Smashwords. I am in the process of building my social media platform so keep an eye out for my Facebook and Twitter pages soon!

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Monarchy-Trilogy-Book-1-ebook/dp/B071NH99VQ/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1497862077&sr=8-1&keywords=laura+pritchard

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/723257

Goodreads: Laura Pritchard on Goodreads

Thank you very much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to take part in this interview, Laura!

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Monarchy by Laura Pritchard

A Dystopian Nightmare

Monarchy by Laura Pritchard, 233 pages, April 26th 2017, Genre: Dystopian. Warning: May Contain Spoilers.

Review by Leigh Holland.

Monarchy is a futuristic dystopian novel reminiscent of “The Hunger Games”. What will a person do to survive? Will they betray their morals? How far will they go? How will the bitter trials one must endure for survival in a threatening world change those who go through them?

In humanity’s past, we became divided into the extremely wealthy and the horrifyingly impoverished. With wealth unequally distributed, the poor turned to crime to survive. Disease, famine, and misery ruled mankind, with the exception of a wealthy few. A revolution changed the social order, as it always seems to in such circumstances. A new, perfected social order was established under the elusive “Monarchy”; a world where nobody goes hungry or lacks for basic needs such as clothing, shelter, medicine, or food. The cost of this perfection is the loss of privacy and a controlled society in which young adults are taken, trained, and assigned roles in the society. Most of those taken from the various sectors are thrilled to be part of the society and to serve. However, some are not- such as Constance, the heroine, and a few of the other recent recruits she’s training alongside. Constance manages to create loyalty among her group for each other rather than the Monarchy. This is forbidden. The only loyalty can be to the Monarchy. The trainers torture them through a series of brutal tests, culminating with one that breaks their loyalty to one another. Finally, they are ready for their assignments. Constance is assigned as a tower guard, a prestigious position for a new recruit. However, Constance learns about the horrible events happening around the various sectors and her doubts about the efficacy and goodwill of the Monarchy continue to grow. She wonders if she will ever see home and her father again.

Written in the first person, the reader identifies easily with Constance and her love of home and family, her uncertainty about the future. The plot was straightforward, the book well-written, and the main character well-developed. This book leaves off on a cliffhanger and is part of an upcoming trilogy of works. I enjoyed reading Monarchy. I’d recommend this book to readers who like dystopian novels similar to The Hunger Games.

This book is available at Amazon at Monarchy.