Interview with Author Lynn Kirkland from New Zealand

Updated: Mar 24

Tell me a bit about yourself…. Brief history-I trained as a primary school teacher and loved the years I spent in the classroom. I studied to be a herbalist and created the herb farm 30 years ago. I wrote many articles on herbs for newspapers and magazines. I wrote a memoir 6years ago and will soon have the sequel ready to publish. I have two children and two grandchildren. And have now written 8 children’s herb books, illustrated by my son Craig.

What genre/s do you write in? Memoir and children’s books.

How long have you been writing? Always loved the written word, particularly using a pen, as I believe it connects with the heart more than typing (so slow at typing!)

Do you have any published books or articles? Tell me a bit about these and what publishing route you took. Wrote for the Weekend Gardener and the Manawatu Standard. Self-published my memoir “My Italian Destiny” and my 8 Herb World Books.

Did you use an editor? If so who? No

Did you use a book formatter and cover designer? Yes, I had the books formatted but used my own photo for the cover and the children’s books have our own designs on the cover.

Did you self-publish or get traditionally published? How did this go for you? Yes, I self-published and was happy with the experience.

How do you market your work and promote your brand?(Include links) Still working on learning about promotion.

What social media and writing platforms would you recommend? Facebook and Instagram although I am no expert and would love help in these areas.

Do you use an agent? No.

Do you use paid advertising? If so what? No.

Do you have a blog or website? Websites.

What inspires you most to write? Sharing my passion for herbs through the children’s books. My connection with Italy is incredible and I love sharing this amazing story.

What do you do to help with writers block? Get away from home-rent a place at a beach for a few days has worked well.

How do you plan your writing and start? With the children’s books, I work out the three main lessons. I want children to learn about a herb and weave the story around that. With the memoirs, I try to do a timeline and find all the relevant notes and photos from the different times and write chronologically.

Is writing your full time job? If not what else do you do? Not at all. I am the R&D person at the herb farm and I am involved with my grandchildren, this year we are homeschooling them (6 and 9 years}

What are you working on at the moment? My second memoir= is”Our Italian Legacy” Then I will start on some new herb books.

What is your target audience? For the memoirs-anyone who loves travel, war stories, connections to Italy.

How long does it take you to write a book? First Memoir was years in writing and my second one has taken a year from first putting pen to paper but 6 years from the first one.

When did you first discover you enjoyed writing? As a child, I loved writing stories.

What is your writing schedule look like? No set schedule-it has to fit in with my full and busy life.

What does your family think about you writing? Very proud of what I have done.

What do you do when you are not writing? Gardening, creating new skincare products, looking after grandkids.

Where do you get information and ideas for your writing? True story for the memoirs. Children’s books from my 30 years of working with herbs.

What do you think makes a good story? One that engages the reader from the first page-a lapel grabber so you want to carry on and see what happens.

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