Friday, April 22, 2011

BEST FORGOTTEN - Paula Vince - Free Book

This is a new author to me. Welcome, Paula. Tell us how much of yourself you write into your characters.

I think I write in the parts of me that I prefer to keep hidden from the world – the occasionally cynical, frustrated and grouchy parts that would make eyebrows raise if I were to speak them straight out. When they come from some of my occasionally cynical, frustrated and grouchy characters instead of me, I get smiles instead. It feels far safer.

What is the quirkiest thing you have ever done?

I have a quirky habit of pretending to be right there with the characters when I’m reading fiction, seeing the whole story pass before me like a movie I’m watching. Then when I’ve finished the book I still daydream about the characters, inventing more scenes which the author never added. I was always embarrassed by my pointless habit but it is lots of fun.

When did you first discover that you were a writer?

When I was very small and my Primary School teacher would tell us to write a story my heart would leap with joy. Later, when I was 15 years old, an English teacher told me that I have a fascinating way with words. That was when I decided that I wanted to be a fiction writer more than anything else. Making people smile, laugh and cry has to be the best career choice in the world, I thought.

Tell us the range of the kinds of books you enjoy reading.

They must have an element of romance in them without being from the pure romance genre. I love books in which depth of character development and a fast-moving plot are evenly balanced. I have come across stories in which one of these elements is emphasized at the expense of the other and that makes me disappointed.

Although contemporary fiction is my chosen genre, I enjoy reading historical as well. Something with a dash of mystery or suspense makes me really happy.

How do you keep your sanity in our run, run, run world?

I homeschool my three children which makes our lifestyle more relaxed and takes away that hectic school-schedule rush. We live in a beautiful, restful part of the world and I love walking, country drives and soaks in the bathtub.

How do you choose your characters’ names?

I love to use names which I wanted to call my children but couldn’t get my husband to agree on. Now that my family is complete, whenever I come across a beautiful name, I think, I’ll use it in one of my novels. Friends sometimes jump to wrong conclusions when they see books of baby names out on my table.

What is the accomplishment that you are most proud of?

I’m proud of writing seven novels with very little encouragement, in a genre my country never even published until recently. Christian fiction is still at a pioneering stage in Australia.

If you were an animal, which one would you be, and why?

My daughter adores panda bears. All of South Australia is mad about them at the moment, as a pair was recently shipped from China to our Adelaide Zoo. They are exotic and cute at the same time; never hurry and look as if they are thinking about some droll joke. Yes, I’ll choose the panda.

What is your favorite food?

Crispy, honey chicken and rice followed a slice of light, melt-in-the-mouth cheesecake. I’m mixing up my countries of origin but never mind.

It sounds yummy to me right now. What is the problem with writing that was your greatest roadblock, and how did you overcome it?

It was actually getting past the first few pages without crossing out sentences, getting discouraged and quitting. It was a great moment when I learned that the creative and judgmental sides of our brains were never meant to work simultaneously. It is quite right to let our creative sides be messy and profuse before the editor in us takes over.

Actually, I have to edit as I go. Tell us about the featured book.

Best Forgotten is my brand new fiction title. I’ve tried to weave together elements of mystery, suspense and redemption in a way I’ve never done before.

A young accident victim wakes up in hospital and can’t remember who he is. He finds that not only does he have nothing in common with his family but he develops an aversion to the person he used to be. He just can’t understand or relate to the way he used to behave or the choices he made. The more he learns about himself, the more puzzled and upset he feels.

He finds out that his best friend has disappeared without a trace on the night of his own accident. The more he tries to investigate, the more likely it appears that he was involved in something really shady. And he’s afraid that something bad is after him. So he’s torn between wanting to find out and being terrified that he’ll have to face horrible consequences when he does.

I’ve been fascinated by the relationship between our thinking patterns and what we make of our lives. How much is a person’s personality shaped by their sum of experiences? To what extent do the thoughts we choose make us into the people we are? Do the small, apparently random choices we make during our daily lives have the impact to come back when least expected and influence the rest of our lives?

When readers find out the mystery, hopefully they’ll say, “Oh wow, I never saw that one coming!”

Please give us the first page of the book.

His eyes blurred with tears, Reverend Barney Wills drove along the steep winding road. The rugged cliff loomed dark ahead and a tatter of cloud obscured the pale moon. His bedside vigil had gone on much longer than expected. It was after midnight.

He was thinking of Maud’s last words and planning how he would break the news of her death to his parishioners when a figure shot out of the scrub and barreled onto the road in front of him. Barney had a transient image of a wraith-like form in dark clothes with wild dark hair flying everywhere. The apparition wheeled around to face the headlights. Its pallid face was petrified. As he slammed his foot on the brake, the thought flashed through Barney’s mind that this might be the Grim Reaper.

When he thought it over later, he was ashamed of his jumble of impressions born of superstition and horror stories. Barney thought he’d left those hang-ups behind in his youth. Perhaps in this case they were wishful thinking. Bowling down a vampire or zombie was preferable to the unthinkable concept of seriously hurting a human being. But his front bumper-bar hurtled the figure off its feet, lifted it high onto his bonnet and pitched it onto the road. Tyres screeching, Barney jerked his steering-wheel as the car careered into the roadside scrub.

His hands shook violently; he took three attempts to open his door. His quivering knees were almost too weak to take him to the prostrate figure. He sank to the ground, staring at the white, unconscious face. A trail of blood gleamed on the pale chin. The teeth had bitten deep into the flesh of the lower lip.

Oh God, what have I done?

Wow! I can't wait to read it. How can readers find you on the Internet?

My website is
My blog is
My books are also available from and I have a Face Book fan page.

Thank you, Paula, for spending this time with us.
Readers, here's a link to the book. By using it when you order, you help support this blog.

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 6 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Feedblitz, Facebook, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link.


Michelle said...

Can't wait to read it! I love Paula's others.
Thanks for the inspirational interview

Anonymous said...

I loved this novel. Paula's characters are always inriguing, and the story takes you on a few twists. Thanks Paula.

nadine said...

great to see another Australian author, the story line sounds so interesting can't wait to read it
south Australia

Paula Vince said...

Thanks Amanda, Michelle and Nadine.
I'm always so happy to hear from people who have enjoyed my writing, and from fellow Aussies.
Love Paula

Lyn said...

I've read three of Paula's books and have another two on my shelf waiting. I'm definitely getting this one too. Way to go Paula, keep writing my friend.

Mary Hawkins said...

Lena, great to see an Aussie friend of mine here on your blog! This book challenged me. What would it be like to have forgotten all my past sin? While Satan would keep wanting to throw it up in my face, I am so thankful God through Christ does forget our sin as it is paid for by Him on the cross. A great reminder this Good Friday. And please don't enter me in the draw - have the book and enjoyed reading it!

Hans Voortman said...

My wife read Paula's latest book in one sitting it was so gripping! Must read it myself! JRV

Cindy W. said...

Best Forgotten sounds like a book I would truly enjoy. Please include me in your drawing. Thank you for the opportunity.

Smiles & Blessings,
Cindy W. from Indiana


samantha said...

absolutely love Paulas books the characters and plots are so intriguing , Im so amazed at the way scenes that seem there is no hope find a way of shining through very inspiring and inspirational they show that anything is impossible!

samantha said...

absolutely love Paula's books the characters and plots are so intriguing , I love at the way the story at times seems there is no hope and then they find a way of shining through in a very inspiring and inspirational way they show that anything is possible! Adelaide south Australia

cynthia said...

Wow this sounds very intriguing. I can't wait to read this story and find out what happens to the main character.

San Francisco bay area

Linda said...

Very interesting the connection between our thoughts and actions. Sounds like a powerful book. Please enter me.

desertrose5173 at gmail dot com

misskallie2000 said...

I have not read any of your books Paula but would love to begin my reading journey with your books by reading this one.
Thanks for stopping by to chat and share with us.

Thanks for this opportunity to enter giveaway Lena.

misskallie2000 at yahoo dot com

Claire Koenig said...

Has Ms. Vince read "The Eyre Affair" by Jasper Fforde? It's almost Sci-Fi with tourists time traveling to watch "Jane Eyre" live. Since she enjoys imagining herself in books, she might enjoy that one.

I would love to read this one and discover a new author. Please enter my name!

Claire Koenig
San Francisco Bay Area

Wendy said...

Sounds like a really interesting book. I hadn't heard of this author before.
Buffalo, MN

Robyn said...

What an interesting interview. Thanks for sharing about yourself with us.

coolestmommy2000 at gmail dot com

Anonymous said...

I would love to win a copy of this book. Allie from KY

Sandy Jay said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Linda Kish said...

This sounds like a great book!


lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Sandy Jay said...

I'd love to read this book. Thanks for the giveaway. I'm from MI

forwhlz at gmail dot com

Paula Vince said...

Good morning, everyone,
It's Saturday morning here in Adelaide, Australia and I just woke up :)
Hans, Samantha, Lynne and Mary, I'm so grateful for your positive feedback and kind words.

Claire, I haven't read anything by Jasper Fforde yet but somebody else highly recommended his books for the same reason so now I'm more curious. I'll have to begin with "The Eyre Affair."

Cindy, Linda, Wendy, Miss Kallie, Robyn, Allie and Sandy Jay, thanks for dropping by. I'm looking forward to posting one to the winner of the draw and wish I could post one to everybody :)

Lena's lovely blog is quite new to me but I'll be visiting more often.

Wendy Sargeant said...

Great to see your lovely blog, Lena. We met years ago on shoutlife and I am proud to have a signed copy of your book.
I hope you found Paula on our aussiewriters blog:-)
Great news, Paula:-)

windycindy said...

Many thanks for introducing this author that is new to me, also!
I enjoy a good suspense and psychological book...
Many thanks, Cindi

Susan said...

"Best Forgotten" will be unforgotten if I win it!!! Thanks for the opportunity! Things are fine in North Carolina!

Susan said...

sounds like another good book from Paula. Cant wait to read it!

Carol said...

Great interview, Paula. It's good to keep learning more about fellow Aussie authors. I loved Best Forgotten. Keep up the good work.

Pam K. said...

From the excerpt, "Best Forgotten" seems to be a book that would be hard to put down! I'd love to win.


Paula Vince said...

It's lovely to hear from Carol and Wendy. In Australia our number of Christian fiction writers has grown but we're still at the stage where we've mostly all heard of/read each other.

Cindy, Susan and Pam, thank you for your interest too. I always like to tell people that although "Best Forgotten" is the title, we pray it will be well remembered :D

Linda said...

We love Paula's books in our home! And now that 2 of my daughters have finished reading 'Best Forgotten', I'm hoping I can read it myself! My daughters have commented that this may just be their new favourite novel, which says a lot, considering how much they love the 'Quenarden' series and 'Picking up the Pieces'. Thankyou, Paula!

Anonymous said...

Paula would have to be one of Australia's finest Christian Fiction authors. Her new novel, 'Best Forgotten', I think, is close to one of her best yet, though her others are all great reads. If you haven't read her yet, you must...

Meredith Resce
Australian Author

Narelle Nettelbeck said...

I love all of Paula's books but would have to say that Best Forgotten is my favourite.
I recommend readers get hold of a copy - you'll read it in one sitting as you won't want to put it down!!

Ausjenny said...

I just finished a design of gold yesterday morning (around 1am couldn't put it down). I love the look of this book also. Cool interview.
im also a south aussie.

Paula Vince said...

Linda, Meredith, Narelle and Jenny,
I'm really thrilled with your kind recommendations. Thanks so much for your feedback.
Many blessings,

Janet said...

I have enjoyed all of Paula's books so far, so am sure I would love "Best Forgotten" especially after reading the synopsis of it here. I love to READ fiction, but am no good at writing it (think I'll stick to magazine articles), so really admire those who do!

Paula, when you wrote about how you came to write, it sounded just like my own life journey!

Nicole Watson said...

Best Forgotten was one of those books that kept me in suspense until the very end. I loved reading it! I also love your choice of favourite meal Paula! :)

Looking forward to your next book !

:) Nicole

Judy said...

I loved the interview with Paula. With 3 children to home school she sounds like a busy Mom.

Her book "Best Forgotten" sounds like a really good book. I would love to read it.

Judy from Indiana

Countrysunset said...

Sounds like a really good book. Would love to read it.

Thanks for the chance at the giveaway.

countrysunset40 (at) aol dot com

Have a great Easter weekend from here in the Ohio valley!!

amber said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
kylady717 said...

OMG ! This sounds like a wonderful book...what a mind you must have to come up with this one.....looking forward to reading this one...would love to win.

Mona G./Ohio

amber said...

please enter me!!

afren07[at]gmail[dot]com in TN

Lorna Faith said...

Love the 1st page have a real story telling ability...I fell like I'm there:) Glad there are more christian fiction authors rising up...especially from 'down under!' That's awesome:)
I would love to be entered for a chance to win your book!

Lorna from Alberta

lornafaith at gmail dot com

Brenda said...

The book sounds like a fabulous read. Thanks for the first page!
Brenda from Michigan.

dancealert at aol dot com

Anonymous said...

Sounds like a great husband is a minister and I would love to win this book.

Angela C./Ohio

rbooth43 said...

Best Forgotten sounds like an amazing read with twists and turns that a reader might not expect. This had to be on my TBR list.

Dan said...

Sounds like a really great book! Please enter me :)
Dana - Jackson, MS

Anonymous said...

Please enter my name in the contest to win this book, I would be ever so grateful. Thanks

Shirley T./Illinois

Paula Vince said...

Hello ladies,
Thanks so much for all your responses. I've had a lot of fun answering these questions and I'm going to love sending a copy off :D
I find homeschooling and writing are a good combination to keep me busy without needing to leave home.
I hope many of you will decide to get this novel for a taste of fiction from Down Under.
Thanks and many blessings,

Dale Harcombe said...

After having read Paula's Picking up the Pieces, I'd love to read Best Forgotten. Her chracters stay with you.
another Aussie writer,Dale from NSW.

Abigail said...

Enter me in contest.
Abigail Richmond
Blanch, N.C.

Tristan Badger said...

It may be an unfair preconception, but often when I think of Christian fiction as a genre, the word which springs to mind is "cringeworthy". Apologies to all you authors out there working hard to rectify this situation - I'm sure you know all too well what I mean.

I just finished reading "Best Forgotten", and I'd started out intending to read it with a proofreader's eye to supply Paula with feedback, but quickly got ensnared by the gripping storytelling. After that, it was a bit of a pageturner, and I love the pace of the book: there's always something else just about to be revealed. The characters are real and lifelike, and, most vitally, I was [i]interested[/i] in them.

The Christian elements to the story didn't feel like they were shoehorned in to tick a "genre" box, and the novel was entertaining as a story while reminding us of the constant, sometimes deviously interventionist love of the Father.

Thanks for the great read, Paula. I'd be enormously proud to have written a story so entertaining, and with such readable style. I'm keen for your next one now!

Cathy said...

I have read all of Paula's books and enjoyed them but Best Forgotten would be my favourite by far. I was in from the very first page and loved the concept that God uses all things for good and to draw us to Himself. Keep writing Paula I am looking forward to the next book!
Cathy SA

Jo said...

This really sounds like quite a interesting book and different from what I have read. I really would love to read this book. Thanks for the great interview.

Jo from Southern Arizona

peachykath said...

I feel like I relate to the auther Paula when she says she places herself in the story while she's reading it. I find myself leaving the real world for a time while I read stories and really get into them. Please enter me in the drawing for this book.


Katherine from Northern California

karenk said...

would enjoy reading this novel...thanks for the chance :)

karenk...from PA
kmkuka at yahoo dot com

Jordan said...

Wow, Best Forgotten looks awesome! Great cover!

Jordan from SC

Bakersdozen said...

I loved the interview. I also appreciate the comments from those who have read Paula's work. The book sounds great. I live in S. California.

Paula Vince said...

I was so happy with the feedback. I'm looking forward to posting a book away.

Jill Yarlett said...

Loved Paula's book "Picking up the pieces" and others. Cant wait to get this new one "Best Forgotten" Good mothers day present for me! anyone listening!