Known as the sexiest writer in the business, Victoria Fox is the author of the fabulous HOLLYWOOD SINNERS, following the lives of four celebrity couples around Hollywood, Vegas and London. Since MIRA published in April 2011, Victoria has become a bit of a celebrity herself, from appearing on The Vanessa Show in May, building a huge online presence, to her photo shoot on the red carpet…
What does it feel like being a published author? Vertigo. A nice sort of vertigo. Knowing the book is ‘out there’ for anyone to pick up is exciting but it’s also strange; it’s gone now, you’ve let it go, but still it’s a massive part of your life and a family of characters and storylines you’ve worked long and hard over. So, a bit dizzying. But every bit as wonderful as I’d hoped it would be.
Why did you decide to write in such a commercial genre? First, because I love those early bonkbusters, so full of style and swagger, and wanted to try my hand at one of my own; second, because I used to work in commercial publishing and felt I knew the market; and third, because the dream is to become a bestseller and I’d like to appeal to as many readers as possible.
Who is the author you would most compare your work to and who are your favourite authors? My writing style for Hollywood Sinners definitely draws on my biggest inspiration in the genre: Jackie Collins. Books like Lovers and Gamblers and Chances are packed with outrageous characters and wicked storylines – and they also have this great comedy element which is crucial to a truly entertaining bonkbuster. As well as Jackie, my favourite authors in the genre are Tilly Bagshawe and J J Salem. Favourites elsewhere are Rose Tremain, John Fowles and David Nicholls.
How long did it take you to write your debut? Hollywood Sinners took four months to write and two to edit.
Can you pitch your book in one line? A sexy, scandalous, full-throttle ride through the hidden lives of the rich and famous.
How long did it take you to find an agent? While working in publishing I put together a partial manuscript and sent it anonymously to the Darley Anderson Agency – they were always the big dream. I made sure my pitch was tailored to their list and tried to couch my project in commercial terms, explaining where I saw it in the market, which authors I hoped to sit alongside and so on. I was lucky: very kindly, they didn’t make me wait too long!
Were you pleased with your book jacket? Extremely pleased. Jubilant. I knew my publishers ‘got’ the book, the kind of retro vibe I was going for but also the up-to-date celebrity glamour, so I was confident they’d nail it. Even so, when the jpeg landed in my inbox it was even better than I’d hoped. It’s one of the most stylish covers I’ve seen in a long time.
Do you do a lot of self-promotion? It’s important to promote as much as possible. The market is very competitive and things like radio, TV and magazine interviews are crucial so I try to do as many of these as I can. Everything’s going online now and it’s good to be as ‘reachable’ as possible: your own website, Facebook and Twitter are great ways to make contact with readers. Hearing from readers is the best thing.
Have you always wanted to write? Yes. After university I wanted to work as an editor and immerse myself in other people’s books for a while, but the bug soon caught up with me. If you have it in you, it’ll always be there.
What tips would you give to new writers out there? Persevere. Everyone says it but that’s because it’s true. Persevere with your book, see it through to the end (no matter what state you imagine it’s in) then persevere getting it read. There are people who say they’re going to write a book and people who actually write one – decide which you are.
To buy a copy of HOLLYWOOD SINNERS, click on the cover below. Thank you Victoria!
A juicy tale of glamour, corruption and ambition. -Jo Rees – author of Platinum
A glorious, sexy story of high-octane Hollywood intrigue – I loved it. -Lulu Taylor