Hi there everyone.
A pleasure to be here with you all again my dear friends.
Just a quick note before the fun and games start – I link to a lot of other articles in my posts. So to all WordPress Users, please check your spam folders and approve any links/pingbacks that you find from me in your Setting Menus to improve the visibility of your own posts, as well as mine, it’s a win win for us both 😉
For your Friday treat this week, I am lucky enough to be chatting once more with the feisty Portergirl AKA Lucy Brazier, who has just released another fun and thrilling installment in her ongoing series.
Here is the original interview that I did with Lucy, in case you haven’t seen it yet:-
And here is my latest interview with her, let the adventure commence and have a great weekend folks 🙂
Hi there Lucy, wonderful to have you over here again to chat about your latest book release in the Portergirl series that just came out last month – “PorterGirl: The Vanishing Lord”.
For those of us who have not read the previous books in the series, please can you enlighten us as to who Portergirl is and the concept behind your series.
PorterGirl is the very first female Deputy Head Porter at the ancient and esoteric Old College, one of the oldest and most famous colleges at an elite British university. She has to contend with centuries-old prejudice as well as murders, mysteries and the eclectic array of staff and students who make constant demands upon her time.
Can you tell us why the book is called “The Vanishing Lord”? (without spoiling the plot of course 😉)
The title refers to the disappearance of the priceless portrait of Old College’s founding father, Lord Arthur Layton. There is also another Lord who meets a sticky end, so in a sense he vanishes also.
What is the story about regarding the conflict that needs to be resolved by the characters and what are the stakes for them this time round?
The most pressing matter is of course to recover the missing painting, but this is complicated by unwanted police attention in the form of two nosey detectives who are most certainly not welcome sticking their noses into College business. Head Porter is facing mysterious financial difficulties and his personal life seems to become more convoluted by the minute. The Dean is offered an attractive proposition but is torn between his loyalties to Old College and his personal ambitions. Our plucky heroine Deputy Head Porter is trying to hold it all together whilst being stalked by a shadowy, unseen stranger whose motives are highly dubious. There is also the matter of an unexplained death, but no one seems to be too interested in that, for some reason.
How did the idea for this tale take shape? Is it a natural progression from the previous books in the series or are you taking the series down another different path entirely?
The broad idea for the plot came from an incident that occurred whilst I was Deputy Head Porter at the real Old College, but I won’t say any more than that! The general feel and style of the novel continues from the original, First Lady Of The Keys, but whereas that novel served very much as an introduction to the unusual and secretive world of Old College, this one is much more of a fast-paced romp.
Did you do any specific research for this novel that differed from your previous one in the series or the other novels that you have written?
For this novel I needed to research heraldry (the study of armorial bearings and coats of arms) which is pivotal to the plot, and also medieval English, for the purpose of writing the discovered diary of Old College’s original Porter, who put pen to paper in 1448.
Regarding research for your books, is there anything that has surprised you or completely changed your world view after learning more about it?
The themes explored in PorterGirl are unlikely to be challenging the world views of anybody! No, there was nothing quite so involving, but I found heraldry endlessly interesting and have continued to casually read up on it when I get the time. The medieval English was similarly entertaining and I have added a few choice phrases of abuse to my day-to-day vocabulary.
What were the hardest parts of this book to write? And what were the easiest?
There are not really any elements of PorterGirl that are difficult to write, it’s a very light-hearted, jolly series. Anything involving The Dean is always the best to write – he is my favourite character and his parts just sort of write themselves.
Were there any significant concepts that you had to edit out of this book that seemed like a good idea in the first draft but became too unwieldy as the story progressed?
No, this is a very straightforward book and the concepts are fairly unchallenging, quite frankly. The emphasis is on good, old-fashioned storytelling and slightly surreal humour.
Do you hide any secrets or Easter eggs in your books for dedicated readers to find?
Yes, there are lots of thinly-veiled references to my personal life, in-jokes from the blog (from where the series originated) and there are lots of breadcrumbs that will lead up to a big reveal at the end of book seven, which eagle-eyed readers should look out for.
What would you choose as your own personal mascot or spirit animal when it comes to you and your style of writing?
Probably a monkey. I was born in the Chinese year of the monkey and identify cheerfully with the little fellows.
What do you think most characterizes or defines your writing? Do you have any writing quirks or themes that constantly crop up in your stories throughout the series?
The books are written in first person present tense, which is isn’t necessarily the most popular style of writing and certainly an unusual choice for writing mysteries. Switching to third person would have made the books more conventional and given more scope for the investigation elements of the stories, but this style has characterised the blog and brings a certain intimacy to the writing. It’s not always easy to ensure the narrative doesn’t get too clunky or convoluted, but it gives the books a unique feel and has become a big part of the series so I feel it is worth the effort.
I also have a habit of using ten words where one will do and often use words and phrases slightly out of context. I am a big fan of breaking accepted literary norms and passionate defender of the sadly diminished adverb!
Finally, regarding your subsequent projects, will you be writing another sequel in your Portergirl series or do you have other plans for other books in the pipeline?
There will be a total of seven PorterGirl books, the third of which is due to be published at the end of this year, so I’ve got quite enough on my plate for now, thank you very much.
And once again, that’s a wrap! 🙂 Thank you for keeping us thoroughly entertained with your Portergirl antics
Always a delight to converse with you, my dear chap, I thank you so much!
Lucy Brazier is in her 30’s and lives in the university city of Cambridge, England. She started writing from the age of ten when her primary school teachers were at a bit of a loss as to how to contain her effervescent personality. They tasked her with writing stories for the younger children in a bid to keep it from disrupting her peers.
Lucy developed her skills throughout her teenage years, when she was inspired to read the words of Homer, Livy and Virgil. These formative years also saw her develop her other great passion of music, where she heartily threw herself into several years of misbehaving and playing bass guitar in unsuitable rock bands. Lucy developed a penchant for the unusual and the absurd, something which was exacerbated by her time serving in the Police where the many varied experiences and characters she met had a profound effect on her outlook on life.
You can connect to Lucy via the following Social Media Platforms:-
You can buy her books here:-
UK/Europe:- Buy Lucy Brazier’s books in UK/Europe
US/Rest of the World:- Buy Lucy Brazier’s books in US/Rest of the World
If you too would like to be interviewed on my blog at TooFullToWrite and you have a book or a series of books that you would like us to chat about then fill out the Contact Me form here with your details and we can arrange a future interview slot.
Still want more? Well, Portergirl is full of traditional values and British themes, with nothing being more traditional than a nice steaming, refreshing cup of tea. For more articles on the theme of ‘Tea’ (I’m so happy to include other articles relating to tea, since I myself am a tea junkie) then click on the links below:-
1. Spicy-Sweet – zblakston
2. Light Motifs II – The Tearoom
3. The Abundant Heart – Tea Time
4. Every Time is Tea Time – Simple Tips for Healthy Living
5. The monster who puts the milk in first – Sarahs Crazy Mind
6. tuckedintoacorner – tea-time
7. Tea, A cup of emotions – Colourfulcanvas
8. Tea – wordsareallihavesite
9. Moments In Life – Care for a cup of tea?
10. Tangled Webs – Faux Thai Iced Tea
11. Tea – 100 Words – Law of the Letter – Short Stories and Flash Fiction
12. Chasing Thoughts And View Points – Why The British Might Be Right About Their Tea Time
13. Announcing a Blog Giveaway August 1st! – Author Cynthia Mackey
14. Tea – Sharing God’s Story
15. Being Lydia! – Paper Tea and Five Flavour Life Savers
16. I am what I… – Au Revoir Alcohol
17. Product Junkie – Reactionary Tales
18. a cooking pot and twisted tales – Weekend Tea Party Invitation
19. The “chai” ritual – The Musing Monkey
20. Sandmanjazz – Time for Tea
21. my own little corner … by jenni – Enough … Enough Now
22. Losing My Chill – Zeckrombryan
23. Tea Factory – Sugunag’s Blog
24. A ‘Cuppa’ Solves Everything – Percolating Poetry
25. Sri Lanka- put it on your bucket list… – Mum’s the Word Blog
26. 10 Common Wedding Planning Mistakes to Avoid for a Perfect Muslim Wedding – Rishta Online Blog
27. Tea – only worth drinking from a big cup – Writing On A Rock
28. Builder’s Brew and Chai – NiaSharmaFiction
29. True Friends – Embracing Life
30. Got cake? – writemebad
31. Rinsing Tea Leaves – Debbie Gravett
32. The Keyboard With an Accent – The Pescetarian Poet
33. Bhagyashri’s Creative World – Jasmine Tea and me!
34. Tea and Old me – RONIKA POSTARIA
35. Soothe – Mga Kwento ni Shandris
36. High Tea – Stories – a part of life
37. The Syllabub Sea – Universal Elixir
38. The Shower of Blessings – It Takes A Village
39. The Shower of Blessings – Cee’s Share Your World – July 24, 2017
40. The Shower of Blessings – 100 Word Wednesday: Week 28 – Heirloom
41. Giggles & Tales – My Morning Ritual…
42. Tea – Daily Prompt – twliii
43. Spotting – Rose Glace’s Blog
44. Alice’s Tea Party – Quiver and Quill
45. A cup of tea. A group of friends. Surely happiness is brewing! – kindergartenknowledge.com
46. Lovely Little Leaves – Leigha Robbins
47. Indira’s Blog – Tea- The Daily Post
48. Tea – C.A. Nicola
49. My Future, In Tea Leaves – The Introspection Connection
50. This is Where They Cook People – hannah t.k.
51. Fall – On a mission
52. Matamata – Painted in words
53. Serene Tea – Daily Surrender to God
54. The World in a Teacup – America For Yemen
55. Fortune Telling Tea – Karuchan
56. Not My Cup of Tea – Wind Kisses
57. Prime Delivery – themumblr
58. The Wonder of Yarrow House – Tea Breaks
59. Annvita Tea Room – CHARLENE’S ADVENTURE
60. The Consulting Writer – Glee Over Fandom Tea
61. Karibu! karibu chai. – Piercing the Mundane
62. Leaves of Fortune – Writer’s block
63. LONGLEAF STORIES – If You Knew Ricky
64. Notes to Women – The Afternoon Tradition
65. Beautiful Girl – A Short Conversation
66. Heartbreak-can it be cured? – calliemm
67. Tea–Daily Prompt – Fearless
68. *Sips tea * – Tachispeaks
69. Scribbler’s Dipstick – Tea and Crackers
70. TeaCups&Pots – Thoughts Of An E’ville Woman
71. ~207 Of 365~ – ……….365 Days………..
72. Good Ole Cat-Lap – Minxin’ It Up
73. Tea – The Bag Lady
74. Tea in Jiading, China – My Crazy Graced Life
75. Zombie Flamingos – What I’ve done on 2017 Summer Holidays Part II, Day 3
76. Tales from a journey – Afternoon tea at Eaton drive – Happily Muffined
77. The intergalactic language of tea – Daily Prompt – Afterwards
78. manvsloneliness – Jerel Says, ‘It’s a nice place to visit’; Tea
79. Scottish Legend’s Blog – Friends.
80. The comfort of the warmth – One is the all.
81. recovery to wellness – The Tea Party
82. Success Inspirers World – Tea party If you are…
83. Sip from my cup of tea… – missy miller
84. A Legend to Last a Teatime – Allyn Gibson
85. Crazy Sunshine – tea
86. Cup of Tea or… Coffee? – Dream Desire Achieve
87. On tea (1 min read) – soulprobe
88. My Sweet Dandelion Tea – THE SKY’S THE LIMIT
89. Secondary school – The Loyal Brit Wit
90. Scott Andrew Bailey – Looking Forward
91. Fluffy Pool – The Nine Steps of Forgiveness
92. Looking Forward – thehouseofbailey
93. Swell Time – Sorry, you just don’t do it for me
94. Little Miss Hobbs, pt. II – December Rose
95. memory lane – Inherently Whimsical
96. Bad dad joke of the day… – Bad Dad Cartoons 101
97. Life On The Skinny Branches – Sun Tea
98. Aromathérapie audacieuse- Mr. Tea Pities The Fool! – Equilibre Plus
99. A Sip In Chinatown…. – Nomadchasingwaterfalls
100. Telling the Truth – A quick and happy update
101. Pict Ur Poison – KhaoticEuphoria
102. Moonlight Reflections – Tea Time
103. Designed to Win – Authentic Woman
104. Thoughts over a cup of tea. – A Thought Process
105. Walk with God – Brew Me Up, Scottie!
106. Lets do this together – Tea
107. Afternoon Tea- Repost – Bedoor Bluemoon
108. Just Brittany Moments – Did You Know?!
109. My Housemate’s a Mermaid – Famous Speeches Reimagined with Tea
110. Breakfast with Grandma – Bat Boy’s Revenge
111. Na’ama Yehuda – Broken Tea (“Emilia” excerpt)
112. Cookies & Moo – Iced Tea by the Lake
113. Piper’s Adventures – Fun Poem for the Hidden Meaning for Tea
114. Chai – BONSALLES ART
115. As Love Brews … – epiphanyofsumi
116. Flowers and Breezes – A Cup Of Tea
117. The Power of Tea – Crossfade
118. For All the Tea in China – A Unique Title For Me
119. Paint + Poems – Tea Time, Life Time
120. Musings of a Random Mind – Kitchen Confidential
121. Maxine knows best 🙂 – Tea
122. The ‘Tea’ story – My little storybook
123. Anti-tea – In my world
124. Festiv-e-teas – koolkosherkitchen
125. Mr. Tea Pities The Fool! – Bold Aromatherapy
126. Tea is my thing – hiddenemotions967
127. A Tea for all Times – Kathy Pardell & Barkley Road Studio
128. Mad Tea – Smell The Coffee
129. Another Remarkable Day – Comfort of Coffee and Tea
130. Olive Odyssey – Tea
131. Behind the Teacup – Rena Arun
132. Jaspa’s Journal – Mate Tea and Chocolate Submarines in Buenos Aires
133. Brewing Love* – Emotional Spaces
134. Coffee, Anxiety and Me (Daily Word Prompt is Tea) – My Loud Bipolar Whispers
135. Laughter’s Delicious Tea… – Success Strategies
136. When Camellia drowned.. – Journey
137. Sweet sweet meadow / Meadowsweet – a day in the life of a latvian mom
138. Tea & Happiness’ Top 5 Teas – Tea & Happiness
139. Miss Pelican’s Perch – Yoga and Green Tea
140. Mumbai Cutting Tea – Cooking with Sweta
141. Take Tea and See – This, That, and The Other
142. Giggles & Tales – The Daily Prompt – Tea!
143. SIPPING GOD – IDLE BRAIN
144. What!?!? An Organized Spice Cabinet? – Adventures of a Busy Mom
145. SERENDIPITY – TEA. PROPERLY.
146. BUT FIRST TEA. – Amy Eliza L.O.V.E.S
147. Tea Time – Water….simply said
148. Tea – Lass From Lancashire
149. Making it write – Tea Stains
150. Cheers – Dance of the Soulful Words
151. Charmed Chaos – Elixir
152. MY OWN PRIVATE IDAHO – Tea
153. The Ballad of Coffee – Sketches By Nitesh
154. Lived Happily Ever After – Around the World
155. Writing with Spirit – Trump’s Discrimination Against Transgendered Americans
156. Hello? Is It ‘Tea’ You’re Looking For? – Reveries of an Imagination Junkie
157. Mini Pizzas! – Our Happy Kitchen
158. Smorgasbord – The chaotic morning
159. Short Fiction: A Soothing Cup of Tea – Staci Trolio
160. Tea – Image & Word
161. Free Verse: Spinning Tales Over Tea and Cookies – Urban Poetry By Linda J. Wolff
162. Early morning tea.. – Winged words of a wanderess
163. A Life Retired – To a tea
164. After a trip to Japan – Don’t hold your breath
165. Relax– – “Coffee, Tea, or …”
166. Tea – Daily Prompt – Ladyleemanila
167. christelijk Geloof in #Tienen – Groeten uit #Tienen
168. Chai, Mint and memories ⋆ Obsolete Childhood
169. Piper’s Adventures – Sweet Tea Day
170. mylocalweb – my cup of tea
171. Tea and Me – I’m a Writer, Yes, I Am!
172. The Cat Chronicles – Daily Feline Prompt: Tea for a Feline
173. Tea Cup – hot plate kate
174. Sigh! . . . No Words. – TyroCharm
175. Charron’s Chatter – T Bones
176. DCMontreal: Blowing the Whistle on Society – A Nostalgic Look at Park Pond Cleaning
177. Iced tea? – Bad Dad Cartoons 101
178. Around the green tea – Ignorance is a blessing? – Scrubs and jeans
179. Coffee Over Tea – damswriter
180. Tea reflection – citySonnet
181. Tea Party – emotionsoflife2016
182. Pret A Manger in Newport Center Mall – The Write Might
183. Tea – Emovere
184. simplygiselle – Tea for Two
185. Eau de Cologne – Journeys of Len
186. Inner Critic – Culture Eighteen.
187. Cup Of Tea – Wings Of Poetry
188. thelonerose – PAUSE
189. Another cup of tea – Pravarthika’s log
190. Tea Enthusiast – Reactionary Tales
191. Simple yet extremely memorable stories – Bird Flight
192. Hopeless Chai Addict – stoneronarollercoaster
193. First Time Visitor – Kissxd By Me
194. Chronicles of an Anglo Swiss – It’s tea time
195. Can’t beat it with an ugly stick – CD-W, Author Flawed to Perfection
196. If It Brings You Joy – Increase Happiness by Removing this One Thing From Your Life
197. simply.cindy – More Cushions and a Poster
198. The Price of Moon Dust – The Page Turns
199. juantetcts – Daily Post
200. I Have Pretty Strong Convictions, I Guess – Tea
201. Monika Sharma – My winter love…..
202. Food Blog – 5 min snack recipe – My weird, crazy and mundane life Journal
203. Thought of the day – 26th July 2017 – My weird, crazy and mundane life Journal
204. Need – themanbehindtheglass
205. A cup of Tea – The Vagabond
206. A Strange Elixir Called Tea – Yuvi’s Buzz
207. the blowing green leaves – Writing the wrongs
208. Laundry Talk – Autism in Our Nest
209. lifelessons – a blog by Judy Dykstra-Brown – Green Tea and Me
210. My Mother’s Ice Tea: Infused with Joy – As I was saying…
211. VirtuousParagon – Iron in the Fire
212. ….on pets and prisoners….. – daily prompt: t
213. Scrambled, Not Fried – Cafe
214. the15thday – the subtle art of cuteboy appreciation
215. Tea Time with my Brother Stephen – Roaming Urban Gypsy
216. Moroccan Chicken Salad for Weight Lose –
217. sonja benskin mesher – . laid for tea.
218. Morning Tea – My Life Is My Making
219. Perturbed – Haiku Abound
220. Should a neighbour pay back simple favours with money?
221. A Perfect Infusion. (And a different perspective) – Individual expressions of a naive mind.
222. Armitage – Part 1 – Afterwards
223. Developing Explorers – Girl power: bending the gender rules
224. Girl power: bending the gender rules – Developing Explorers
225. I wrote a book. Now what? – Creative Dialogue Tags
226. A Better World View – E. Denise Billups, Writer
227. Rumours. – AestheticGraphy
228. Tea for 2:00 a.m. – Resting Bitch Personality
229. my week like Yorkshire Gold – Scattered Showers in a Clear Sky
230. One of My Favorite Things – Just Writing!
231. Ride Hard: Good Morning Dear! – Redux Of Rex
232. Imaginary Friend – Life After Fifty
233. Tea Spotting – aroused
234. The Wandering Poet – Goes great with tea ^.^
235. Have tea more often – Wells Baum
236. Hot White Snow – Experiencing Traditional Hanoi, Vietnam
237. A Diary of A Single Man: Walking On Moonlight – Harlem Cafe
238. Science Traveler – G’day Mate…Drinking tea in Argentina
239. Frank Prem – an uncertainty in silver
240. Cimmerian Sentiment – #12 Dancing Around The Truth – (Beth & Sean)
241. Bilbo Baggins’ Door, Hobbiton – By Sarah
242. Frank Prem – A Long Night to Sunrise
243. Frank Prem – pine-dirt tea and stabbing trees
244. Tea – All About Writing and more