The Barn of Buried Dreams
by Chrissie Bradshaw
Erin and Heather Douglas are struggling. Their mother’s death has left a void in their family and everyday life has side-lined their dreams.
Erin has buried herself away in the family home and left her stage career. By hiding away, she is evading the pain of returning to London and the acting world where her ex-fiancé is enjoying success and a new relationship. When she meets charismatic Texan Jackson McGee, she wrestles with her feelings for him. Should she trust another man?
Heather is juggling babies, work, a rocky marriage and running on wine. An overheard conversation makes her ask, would Mark cheat on her?
Can the sisters help one another to face their fears, dust off and revive those dreams and find joy in life?
Q & A with Chrissie Bradshaw:
How did you come up with the idea for this book?
My novels are stand alone yet they are linked because they are set around one or two families in a Northumbrian village called Dunleith. This is a village near the border to Scotland where ‘reivers’ from either side were bandits and it was a bit like the wild west so characters are hardy. Some of the characters of book one come into book two. They can be read in either order.
The whole idea for ‘The Barn of Buried Dreams’ arose because Heather Douglas was a ‘best friend’ to Cleo Moon in ‘A Jarful of Moondreams’ and, because she is quite a strong character, she wanted her own story. I gave her equal billing with her sister Erin in ‘The Barn of Buried Dreams’ because Heather is a bit like Marmite and Erin is just lovely and, as sisters, their stories intertwine.
(Marmite is a salty yeast spread that we eat in the UK and you either love it or detest it)
What was your favorite thing about each character?
Heather first appears in a small role in my first novel. She is a fiesty drama queen who demanded a story of her own. Remember the Marmite comparison? You love her or you want to shake her.I really put her through the mill in ‘The Barn of Buried Dreams’ and she came through. My favorite thing about her is that her heart is in the right place.
Heather’s sister, Erin has had a wonderful life and then been hit hard by the loss of her mother and a break up with her fiancé. I love her thoughtfulness and her strength of character that shines through in the end.
Jackson McGee my Texan hero is my favorite kind of man. Good-natured, good-looking, strong yet vulnerable. Have you seen Scott Eastwood, Clint Eastwood’s son? He’d be perfect in the role of Jackson.
Do you have a playlist you listen to when writing?
I do! I played Fleetwood Mac’s version of ‘How do you hang on to a dream?’ a lot. One of the characters is in musical theatre so I played, ‘Les Mis’ quite a bit. Lastly, I played music from ‘Nashville’ because I love it and my Texan Jackson McGee loves it too. I’d have Deacon Claybourne (Charles Estes) playing Jackson’s dad. What a father-in-law.
Any favorite foods/drinks you like while writing?
Black tea with a biscuit (cookie) or two.
When did you know you wanted to be a writer?
I’ve always liked reading and writing my own stories came from that. I knew I’d write novels one day. In my late twenties and thirties, I juggled my career with being a single parent and my dreams of writing novels, finding my ideal man or travelling had to be put on hold. My energy was used up with the school run, a challenging job and after school activities. Luckily, I loved my job and loved my daughter so I was tired but happy and fulfilled. Those childhood years are precious and we can’t grab them back even though we sometimes think the summer holidays are neverending! My three dreams were buried away but eventually they all saw daylight. My younger self would be amazed to know that I’d be a happily remarried, well- travelled author, one day.
What made me knuckle down to writing a novel was a bloody great storm in my G cup. That kick started it all! I was fit and healthy so I surprised when I found out I had an aggressive breast cancer but I didn’t ever think ‘why me?’ Why not when it happens to 1 in 8 of us women? I felt numb as I prepared for the treatments and prepared for the worst scenario. Would my time be far shorter than I’d ever imagined?
Secretly( I didn’t want to upset my family) I set about writing a bucket list. I’m good at writing lists but not so great at carrying them out! This was the most important list I’d written. I thought about writing and the pleasure it gave me so that went on the list. I thought I would quite like to do a lot of things but nothing compared to writing. My real regret was not ever getting down to writing those novels in my head so my bucket list was short. Write a novel!
As soon as my ‘chemo fog’ lifted, I got to work on an idea I had been playing around with for far too long. At that point, I didn’t care if my novel was published or not as long as I finished it. That was my promise to myself.
What are some are your favorite reads?
My favourite reads include ‘Me Before You’ and anything by JoJo Moyes.
‘Rachel’s Holiday ‘ and every book by the brilliant Marian Keyes.
Jane Fallon, Jane Green and Lisa Jewell are also writers I love. I devour their novels as soon as they are released.
A giveaway. A read, a cuppa and a treat.
Win a Paperback copy of ‘The Barn of Buried Dreams’, limited edition mug featuring both of Chrissie Bradshaw’s novels and a box of fresh macarons delivered from ‘Urban Cakehouse’. (Open to UK Only)
*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome. Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.