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Pamela Harju

About Pamela – 

Pamela Harju is a native Finn, living in County Sligo, Ireland.

In her own words, Pamela types fast and writes slowly. She has varied tastes as a reader, and that carries over to her own writing. She has written romance, mystery, fantasy and contemporary fiction. Her writing is character focused, and her ideas often stem from a character that Pamela then builds her story around. Many of her ideas come from her vivid dreams. 

Besides writing, Pamela’s passions in life are dogs and rock music. The latter you will regularly encounter in her writing; dogs, not yet, but stay tuned!

When Pamela is not working, writing, walking or training dogs, gone to a gig or starting said activities all over again, she likes to settle on the couch with a cup of tea and a TV box-set. 

Questions –

1. When did you realize that you wanted to be an author? 
It was always there. I don’t remember a time when I didn’t want to be an author. Even before I learned to read or write, I was making up stories, and after I learned to write, I was always scribbling something.
2. How long does it take for you to write one of your books? 
It used to take me years, but I’ve learned to make more time for my writing. These days, I’d say I can get a book out within a couple of years from the original idea. I realise that that is still slow!
3. How do you balance your work schedule when you’re busy writing? 
I have a full-time job, so I have to work my writing around that – evenings, weekends and break times. I find break times are excellent because I’m already in my working mode, and even though they’re short bursts, they still add up during the week.
4. What would you say is your interesting writing quirk? 
I don’t outline my books on paper or screen, only inside my head, and I write from start to finish. Anything else gives me writer’s block! I also create a new playlist on iTunes for each book I write that matches the mood and feel of the story – it’s still my usual blend of alternative rock music but customized for that story. 
5. How do you come up with ideas for your books? 
I have at least a dozen ideas in my head at any given moment, but I will never get to write them all. It’s usually something small that sparks an idea – a line from a song, a short flash of a scene in a film, a news headline. I also often get ideas from my dreams – I dream vividly and make sure I remember my dreams when I wake up.
6. When did you write your first book? 
I was in my teens when I wrote my first novel. It will never be published because I’m positive that it’s rubbish, but it was a great learning curve.
7. What are your hobbies when you’re not writing? 
Reading, of course, but I also watch a lot of TV. I love a good story. I have three dogs and train and compete in agility with them. I’m also a huge music fan and travel a lot to see my favourite bands.
8. What does your family and close friends think of your writing? 
My family is proud of me for pursuing my dream. I’m very lucky to have such an amazing family, and I can’t thank them enough. My friends are a mixed bag – some are curious about my writing, some are huge supporters and others just don’t care. I realise that not everyone is a big reader and even if they are, my writing might not suit their tastes.
9. What was one of the most interesting things that you learned about yourself when you published your first book? 
In a strange way, I realised I had always known I was going to publish a book, but I hadn’t felt like that prior to publishing. It was only afterwards that I realised that there had never been any question about it. I was always going to make it happen, one way or another. I’m a Finn, and us Finns are known for our sisu!
10. How many books have you written? Which one is your favorite? 
I’m currently writing my seventh novel, but my first two will remain firmly hidden away in my dad’s house. As a music fan, I always hear bands saying how their most recent album is definitely their best and I always wonder how convenient that seems – like a marketing trick. I’ve realised though that I’m the same with my books and my latest project is always my best one, and that is how it should be because we should always strive to improve. I also realise that fans don’t necessarily feel the same way about that progress.
11. What do you think makes a good story? 
Good characters make a good story. Let’s face it – there aren’t all that many different stories at the end of the day, so it’s the characters that make a story interesting. I like real characters that have an everyday feel about them, like they are people you could run into in a coffee shop or at an airport – unless it’s fantasy, of course, because running into a hobbit or a wizard in your local Starbucks would be odd, wouldn’t it?
12. Where do you like to kick back and write your books? 
I usually write at home, either at the kitchen table or the couch. It’s not awfully exciting, but it’s about comfort.

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