What inspired you to write Sorceress of Truth?
From being around 12 years old I’ve had a love for books, which evolved to fantasy. From as far as I can remember, my dream has been to see my very own book on the shelves of Waterstones and WHSmiths, etc.
Way back in 2006/7 my now husband and I went to visit Cheddar Gorge in Somerset. The huge cliff faces of the gorge cutting through the earth and the story of the Wookey Hole Witch are what sparked the beginnings of Sorceress of Truth.
How long did it take to write and publish from the first idea?
From my initial idea, I spent a year or so on a fact finding mission. I really wanted to lay down the foundations of my characters back stories and origins of the races, though there have still been a number of surprises along the way.
Up until November 2015 I’d written no more than 20,000 words. I had a lot of other things happening in my life, so writing became something that I picked up every now and again. That is until I discovered NaNoWriMo.
It gave me the boost I needed to write ‘The End’ and I finally published in November 2019.
What genre is Sorceress of Truth and can you name any similar books?
I class Sorceress of Truth as a YA urban fantasy with a hint of paranormal romance.
I’m massively inspired by Richelle Mead, Cassandra Clare, and P.C. and Kristin Cast. Collectively their works fill the majority of my bookshelves. I guess you could say that Sorceress of Truth deals with a similar discovery journey as the House of Night series. At the same time, the different races are a lot more integrated into normal society, like the Vampire Academy books.
Where is the novel set and do you have a personal connection to the location?
The novel is set in Sheffield, South Yorkshire, and the surrounding area. The small town of Springs is loosely based around somewhere I lived whilst completing my own Alevel’s, with a few artistic differences.
Why did you choose to self publish?
I would say self publishing chose me!
Initially I wanted to go with traditional publishing, although I wasn’t keen of having an agent. That massively reduced the already short list of publishing houses who would accept my submission.
I did everything right. I read the Writers’ & Artists’ Yearbook, wrote a synopsis and short bio, batched everything up as per the publishers requirements, hit send, and waited. And waited.
Eventually I had a few replies, ‘Thank you, but no thank you.’, and I found myself at a crossroads.Should I continue pursuing the golden ticket, or should I re-evaluate what I wanted out of my writing?
There were many factors when it came to my decision, one of those being reaching the top 250 out of 3112 entries in the UK Novel Writing Competition with an early, poorly edited, version.
Self publishing won.
That’s not to say it’s been the easier option. From my experience, and from stories I’ve heard, self publishing can often be a much harder and braver option. Though, in some ways, the rewards are so much sweeter.
Please share a snippet or teaser from the book?
“So, I’m going to wake up in two months time and be able to shoot bolts of lightning from my fingers? Or, is this your way of telling me I’m being shipped off to some school for magic?” I glared at Ky with my fists by my side, the nails digging into my fleshy palms. It was the only way I could think of to make me feel something, to make sure this wasn’t all some twisted dream.
“Your family seems to have eluded The Guard for many years.”
“The Guard?” That piqued my interest, and not in a good way. I still didn’t know much about them, and an uneasy feeling churned within my stomach.
“The Guard was formed hundreds of years ago. There’s a prophecy that, one day, a powerful sorceress will cast a demon, Belial, into the mouth of hell.”
Belial? Hell? Was everyone here crazy?I pushed myself from the tree and began striding back towards the house. There was no way I was going to get caught up in all of this. Next, they’re going to tell me that there are unicorns roaming the woods and mermaids living in the lake.
There are two love interests in your novel, which is most like your man?
This is really hard because all of my characters are an amalgamation of friends, family, acquaintances, even characters from books I’ve read and films I’ve seen.
My husband is a great dad, and very supportive of me and my many crazy ideas, so he definitely has a lot of Kylan in him. On the other hand, as a gamer and anime watcher, he does tend to have a soft spot for the darker and more troubled characters.
Tell me about a typical day in the life of author Jodie Groom.
To be honest, in my eyes, my day is pretty boring to anybody looking in.
I start my day with my phone alarm going off several times before I eventually crawl out of bed and wake my daughter for school. Once the school run is out the way I try and do half an hour or so of exercise in the living room followed by breakfast and coffee.
Begrudgingly I try to fit in an hour or two of housework, or related tasks, then turn to the computer to deal with email and social media posts. If I’m feeling creative I will try to write, but it’s rare.
After lunch, I’ll do more housework and jobs that have built up, before picking my daughter up from school again. Sometimes she has clubs etc so I act as taxi, and once home, we cook and eat dinner.
This normally brings me to about 7pm when my husband takes over and does the whole bedtime routine, allowing me to get on with whatever I need to be doing on the computer. Sometimes that’s writing, sometimes it’s creating video’s and trailers, and sometimes it’s updating my website.
Time seems to fly pretty quickly then. I’m at my most creative at night and, if I’m having a really good writing session, I have been known to stay up past 3am. Which is another reason why I loathe my alarm clock and the morning school run.
Some day’s I spend a lot of time up at school helping with the PTA activities, and other day’s I can be quite involved with tasks for World Indie Warriors. Every day is different and comes with its own challenges. For now, I may be a stay at home mom, but I definitely don’t see myself fitting into any of the regular stereotypes.
What project are you currently working on?
I always have many pies on the go, I can’t help it. I learned very early on that I get fed up easily so have to be able to switch to something else. It’s not just in my writing, it seems to be in most things.
I’ve recently turned my focus back to Sorceress of Flame, the second instalment of the Divine Prophecy Series. We continue Tory’s journey but this time it will be NA rather than YA. It wasn’t intentional but Tory is growing up, maturing, and so it felt fitting that he story followed the same path.
In the background I’m also writing a 3 book series, whose working title is The Don of Avery, which I can’t wait to unleash. It’s a dark mafia romance set in Leeds that definitely isn’t YA.
Where can we find out more and buy Sorceress of Truth?
Sorceress of Truth is available in print and ebook from all good book shops, such as Warterstones, Barnes & Nobel, Apple etc. Or you can purchase direct from Amazon.
I try to post regularly on my website, www.jdgroom.com , where there is information about upcoming events that I’m attending. Alternatively, Instagram is where I mostly hang out.
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