Sunday 3 June 2018

Fellow Chapeltown author Mandy Huggins launches a new book

Today I interview Mandy on the release of her  new book Separated form the Sea 

Northern Short Story Festival in Leeds on June 2nd

Tell me about your book and your inspiration

Separated From the Sea is my debut full length short story collection, and the first single author collection to be signed by Retreat West Books. Some of the stories have been written especially for the collection, and many others have won writing competitions or been published elsewhere in the last five years or so.

I love the short story form, the challenge of crafting a complete story in a few pages, and striving to make every word count. Capturing entire worlds, creating plots and characters, evoking a gamut of emotions in only a couple of thousand words, fully aware that you have to pull the reader in from the very first sentence. And you know you’ve got it right when people tell you that they were moved to tears by those words, or that they couldn’t stop laughing, or that they want to know ‘what happened to her next.’

Some of the stories from my flash collection, Brightly Coloured Horses, have developed into longer stories which appear in Separated From the Sea - because I had to find out what happened next as well!

Separated From the Sea:
Crossing oceans from Japan to New York and from England to Havana, these stories are filled with a sense of yearning, of loss, of not quite belonging, of not being sure that things are what you thought they were. They are stories imbued with pathos and irony, humour and hope.

Evie meets a past love but he's not the person she thinks he is; a visit to the most romantic city in the world reveals the truth about an affair; Satseko discovers an attentive neighbour is much more than that; Eleanor’s journey on the London Underground doesn't take her where she thought it would.

'This is a writer who knows her craft. Never a word out place, poignant, sometimes sad, sometimes startling, these stories fit worlds into small spaces. A long awaited debut.'
Angela Readman – author of Don’t Try This At Home

'If you want the perfect witness to a crime, Amanda Huggins is your woman. She notices everything about the people, places and the things around her. And she gets all this down in lovely little stories that spin around in the reader's head, dizzying us with her powerful images of loss, regret and yearning.'
David Gaffney – author of All The Places I’ve Ever Lived

'Amanda’s work is well crafted, subtle, and shows a deft hand. She delves into the secret wishes and desires of each character, giving us insights into how and why people act the way they do.' 
A M Howcroft – author of Nobody Will Ever Love You

'From the first to the last, the reader rejoices and grieves, empathises and identifies with a range of human emotions depicted with great skill and flair. The writing is flawless and carefully shaded, the layers of meaning unfolding elegantly.'                                                                                                                                                                 Joanna Campbell – author of When Planet Slip Their Tracks

What's Next? Do you have any events planned?

A couple of months ago I started work on a poetry collection. A number of the poems are about growing up in a seaside town in the seventies, but others explore themes of grief and loss, and of yearning for a different life, closer to nature.
I have a busy time ahead promoting both of my collections, and I'm hoping to organise readings with another local author. I'm also the judge of this year's I Must Be Off Travel Writing Competition, so later this summer I'll be reading the shortlisted entries, which I'm looking forward to!
The official Blog Tour for Separated From the Sea carries on throughout the first week in June.

How can we get a copy of the book?

Separated From the Sea
Published by Retreat West Books
2nd June 2018

Ebook                ISBN: 978-1-9997472-7-5
Paperback         ISBN: 978-1-9997472-6-8
The collection is currently in stock on Amazon:


Book Depository:

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