Today I’m really happy to have the lovely Julia Crouch on the blog reviewing her 2012.
2012 has been a fab year for you. Do you have a favourite memory professionally?
Loads! It’s been a packed year. The Goldsboro Books launch of ‘Every Vow You Break’, my second novel, was a high point, because, while a first novel might be a fluke, a second is proof of staying power, commitment and hard work (I think!). And at Bristol Crimefest and Harrogate Crime Writing Festival I discovered that I rather liked being on panels. And my writer-on-a-train gig was excellent! (http://juliacrouch.co.uk/blog/writer-on-a-train)
And how about a favourite moment from 2012 generally?
I was cynical about the Olympics to the point of renting our house and spending the month in Greece (which was pretty good, by the way).
But while we were away, we found ourselves trying to keep up with what was happening at home, and there was this growing sense that, despite the blue, blue blue sea and sky, we were missing out on something rather special.
When we got back, I took my two sons to a morning at the Paralympics and I was astounded at the goodwill on show, the triumph of the human spirit, and the way that the whole of London seemed to be smiling at strangers.
In a year that – Barack Obama’s re-election apart – seems to have been pretty grim on many fronts, the Olympics and what they did for us has to stand out as a high-point.
Favourite book in 2012?
That’s really hard to answer – I have read so many great books, and I have an appalling memory. I have just put down the US proof of ‘The Boy Who Could See Demons’ by Carolyn Jess-Cooke and I enjoyed that greatly – it’s a beautifully written, richly-layered delve into guilt and psychosis as well as a page-turning story with an innovative voice. Although I also finally got round to reading ‘The Hunger Games’, and I really didn’t do anything else for the three days it took to whizz through the trilogy.
Favourite film of 2012?
I *loved* ‘Moonrise Kingdom’. I am a great Wes Anderson fan, and this was his best yet – music, visuals, story, light, deadpan performances – all pretty much perfect, with just the right touch of whimsy.
Favourite song of the year?
My favourite listening is Nick Cave, PJ Harvey, Bach and Phillip Glass. But I have this song ‘Black Heart’ by this girl group Stooshe in my head all the time – the one that goes ‘Daddy I’ve fallen for a monster’ (I think we’ve all had that in our head at some point this year! Vic). It’s great – just the right amount of soul diva operatics and hysterics, and it sounds a bit like old Motown with 21st century lyrics.
Any downsides for you in 2012?
All the weather. All the rain and hurricanes all over the world and how this is pattern is settling in and how we are paying for our greed and carelessness with our world. Oh, and also, the fact that ‘X Factor’ still pulls such a big audience.
Are you making resolutions for 2013?
I am going to see one live theatre/dance event every week for the entire year (Sounds fab, my kind of resolution! Vic). My husband is often away (he’s an actor and playwright) so, as mother of three, I have got used to staying in most nights. But now my youngest is 13, I have an ideal, if occasionally unwilling, theatre companion (or alternatively someone who can look after himself for a couple of hours while I go with someone else). Also, I am going to spend less time social networking and more time writing.
What are you hoping for from 2013?
Apart from world peace and a collective commitment to saving the planet?
A great reception for my third novel, ‘Tarnished’, out in March 2013…
‘Strangness on a Train’ is available for download here: http://amzn.to/UDFwev