Even if you’ve never read any of her books, it’s extremely likely that you’ve heard of or seen people talking about them. E.J. Noyes is, after all, a best-selling and award-winning author, of twelve books including Ask, Tell, Pas de Deux and most recently Schuss. On top of that, she’s a brilliant human being with a great sense of humour, and I’ve been lucky enough to get her involved with Sapphic Fiction February! Enjoy this interview - happy Wednesday!
Introduce yourself! Tell us a little bit about you - who are you, and what do you do?
I'm an Australian, currently living on the South Island of New Zealand. I'm a dedicated procrastinator and in my free time I write novels for Bella Books and do a little proofreading etc. on the side.
What made you want to sit down and write your first book?
I was bored. For real. I had an office job that was very cyclic with busy-quiet periods and I just had an idea for a book and decided to see what would happen. That idea turned into my debut, Ask, Tell.
How do you develop your plots and characters?
I don't make a conscious effort to develop anything. My plots and characters evolve as I write the book. Pantsers unite! It works well for me, but it does mean I have a lot of wastage because I write the plots I want to fit my idea, and then upon researching plot points and tightening up the timelines, I often realise it just doesn't work and I have to rewrite a lot.
Which of your characters do you relate to the most, and why?
Probably Sabine Fleischer. But I'm nowhere near as smart as she is. I think as my debut MC, I put the most of myself into her, but there's bits of me in all my leading ladies. Like me, Sabine is a little neurotic, a little wacky, a little obsessed with talking to herself. She's overly aware of how she fits into other people's spaces, compassionate and empathetic, and swears a lot.
Has your own writing ever made you cry?
Constantly. Oh, do you mean because it's so emotionally hard-hitting, not because it's frustrating and I feel like a hack? Yeah, I guess.
Does anyone you know in real life read your books?
My wife reads the earliest drafts possible. And a couple of pals for sure.
Imagine your book, or one of your books, was made into a film. Who would play the lead roles?
Oh geez. I have to pass on this question. I'm terrible with assigning real-life faces to my characters.
When you’re not writing, what do you do to relax?
I get called misogynistic things, and scream at people while playing Call of Duty. Very relaxing... Hiking, indoor bouldering (but I suck because it's so scary), skiing as much as I can during the season.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given with regards to being an author?
You can't please every reader.
How about in general life?
Don't worry about what other people think about you, because in all likelihood they're so busy worrying about their own issues that they don't care about you. But it sounded a lot better when my sister said that years ago.
What is a motto you live by?
Find Yourself a Motto, E. J.
How can people connect with you?
Finally a light-hearted one. If you were a sandwich, what sandwich would you be?
Vegemite and butter on fresh white bread.
If you enjoyed this interview, then make sure you’re following my social media accounts (@kblakemanwriter on Twitter and @katherineblakemanwriter on Instagram) to get all the latest updates! And if you want to support my own Sapphic Fiction journey while you’re here, my new novel The Summer We’ve Had is available now!