Interview with Bobby Twidale – Author of Deja Vu.
Today I welcome Bobby Twidale onto my blog with an interview I conducted in-line with her book – De-Ja Vu, which I reviewed in 2021. This review, inwhich I rated the book the full 5 stars for how it handled its themes and the drive of the story, can also be found at the end of the Q&A.
De-Ja Vu is published with Cherry Publishing and is a romance, with some serious and dark undercurrents in its topical themes. Firstly, thanks to Cherry Publishing and Bobby Twidale for this opportunity for myself and on-behalf of all my readers of my blog.
Now, onto the interview, which has insightful and very interesting and full answers to all 8 questions, covering her book’s themes, her inspiration and an insight into her career in education and more…
- The title Déjà Vu is an intriguing one, what was the inspiration for this?
I used to be a French teacher – the inspiration for a lot of what appears in this story. I wanted something that sounded catchy and hinted at the French theme whilst also giving a glimpse into one of the main themes of the narrative – History repeating itself. Past relationships influence current ones, you feel the effect of decisions long after they are made, bad leopards don’t change their spots. We’ve all asked ourselves the question: “Why does this always happen to me?” Maybe we need to look for the common denominator and change ourselves – that is what Connie and Matt have to do to move forward and leave the past behind.
- Perhaps you would like to tell readers a bit about your book and your inspiration for your characters to be school teachers?
Writers are often advised to write about what they know. I was a teacher for almost 30 years. When you’ve spent that long in schools, you come across personality traits that stay in your mind. Whilst none of my characters are based on real people, they are certainly a melting pot of the thousands of individuals I encountered in those years. I did have to be super careful in my choice of names though – I didn’t want anyone to think I was describing them!
- Déjà Vu deals with the darker side of people’s personalities in such a relevant way to now, when this is in the spotlight, was the timing deliberate and did you have to do any research?
I wrote Déjà Vu around 10 years ago so I guess I was ahead of an unhappy curve in that one. Or maybe these behaviours have always been around, but we are just more empowered to talk about them honestly now.
- Relationships are complex and they certainly are in the story you tell, what do you think the fascination is in readers getting to know the twists and turns within them is?
People are complex and life is complex, but we aren’t alone. When relationships get complicated, it can feel like you’re the only one to have experienced what you’re going through. Reading about others’ journeys (real or fictional) and their ultimate survival – I do like a happy ending – can be affirming and reassuring.
- There is part about a teacher trying to improve standards and getting the boys engaged in their education, what made you interested in this aspect of the education system?
This is what drove me as an education professional. You can’t avoid noticing the inequalities of opportunity when you work in a school – financial, attitudinal, geographical, cultural, health or ability-based. But almost every teacher will tell you of their experience with a class they mistakenly believed to be of much higher academic ability, a group they taught as a bunch of highflyers that produced amazing exam results they would normally never have expected to achieve. I often felt like the young people I taught lived up (or down) to the expectations I had of them.
- What or who inspired you to write and what made you want to write contemporary romance?
From a very young age, I was inspired to read books by my parents. We lived in the middle of a field and I’m very old, so the internet was still a glint in the eye of Tim Berners-Lee. There wasn’t much to do other than play in the fields, woodland and brooks of my parents’ farm and read. I wrote my first ‘book’ aged around 8 years old – sent it off to a publisher and everything. It wasn’t published, obviously, but I got a very nice letter encouraging me to keep writing. I write contemporary romance because it’s fun and a lovely dose of escapism. Let’s be honest, there’s a lot we’d all like to escape at the moment!
- What are you reading just now?
I wish I had time to read!
- Do you have another book you are writing, if so, can you give any details to whet people’s appetite?
I’ve just completed a master’s in journalism so I’m currently focussing on non-fiction writing, but you can find my other book, Going Off Piste, on Wattpad.