Another Rebecca written by Tracey Scott-Townsend, publisher Wild Pressed Books, is available in ebook format from 13th September 2018.
To buy link (amazon UK): https://amzn.to/2oQ7yYZ
A gripping psychological family drama about Rebecca Grey, a sensitive girl who’s spent her childhood caring for her alcoholic mother, Bex. They lurch from one poverty-stricken situation to another until Rebecca is hospitalised with exhaustion. While there, she has an illness-triggered hallucination which entangles her deeper than ever into her mother’s psyche. As an art student, Rebecca can’t understand why she is repeatedly impelled to paint a white horse in a blue landscape. And then there is the boy with yellow hair who she glimpses from the corner of her eye.
Bex’s life was frozen by a shocking tragedy when she was nineteen. Her ‘great grief’ caused her to make a decision which nobody must ever find out about. Rebecca has been implicated in her mother’s lies since the moment of her birth, a fact that her father, Jack, has no inkling of.
As Rebecca gets to know her father’s new family, the gap between her and her mother widens. The mystery of Bex’s dark past comes into focus when an old woman she has never met contacts Rebecca, claiming to be her grandmother.
The thunder of hooves is getting closer for both Rebecca and Bex and the blond-haired boy is more and more often in Rebecca’s dreams. Can Bex continue to keep Rebecca in the dark about the circumstances of her birth, or will the final twist in her tail set Rebecca free to make a new life of her own?
Adapted from a short story written by the author when she was an art student, Another Rebecca was inspired by the painting There is no Night by Jack B. Yeats.
I am so pleased to be involved in the blogtour celebrating and promoting the re-launch of the updated and enhanced version of Another Rebecca by Tracey Scott-Townsend. Tracey Scott-Townsend has prepared an interesting post for my blog giving us an insight into the thought process behind Another Rebecca.
How There is No Night led to Another Rebecca by Tracey Scott-Townsend
In 1988 my five-and-a-half-year relationship with a boyfriend I met almost as soon as I started university had ended. I lived alone in my flat in one of the roughest areas of Hull, but it was okay because I had lived in that area before and not ended up murdered – as (don’t quote me) a larger percentage of people than in any other area of the city had – on an adjoining street. My first-floor flat had rattling windows and no heating apart from a gas fire in the front room (I can’t believe how hardy I was then; my brother couldn’t believe how icy it was when he drove me back there after a pre-Christmas visit home), but I was happy there. I had no television and hardly spoke to anyone from one day to the next, apart from when I was at art-college, and I dedicated myself to making art and writing my dissertation. Unexpectedly, at the same time, my fiction writing flowed more fluidly than ever from the tip of my pen and my fingers on the typewriter keys.
I napped during the day and stayed up late into the early hours of the morning, writing poems, short stories and a radio play. I hand-wrote the first draft of what eventually became my first novel The Last Time We Saw Marion (accepted for publication by Inspired Quill in 2013). One night I stayed up exceptionally late. I remember the moment I started writing a story – in blue ink – in the pages of a hardback exercise book. I’d been inspired by a painting my tutor had directed me to on my degree course. The painting was called There is No Night, by the Irish painter Jack B. Yeats, brother of the poet, William. Lots of swirly paint in blues, greens and lilac depicts a white horse galloping across a landscape. A smeary figure in the foreground looks like a man in a prone position, propping himself up on his elbow. I imagined him whistling to his horse. That painting was the driver behind the short story that became my novel Another Rebecca (originally published by Inspired Quill; enhanced and re-released by Wild Pressed Books, September 2018). The short story contained all the elements of the novel, just – shorter. The hallucination scene (Rebecca’s in hospital with a high fever) which has become the prologue of the new version of the book, is derived entirely from the painting. After that, elements of my own youth helped form the character of Rebecca. The alcoholism of her mother, Bex, was something I was familiar with from a family member. The locations of the book: Skegness, Lincoln, Leicestershire and Ireland are all places that had significance in my life, too. When I wrote the original story, my favourite author was Alice Hoffman. I loved her use of magical realism and I think that influenced my writing at the time and I’m really glad I wrote the story in 1989, because I’m not sure I would have been able to make it so fresh if I’d started it from scratch today.
I spent a fair amount of time feeling lonely as a young person. I left home in 1980, two or three months before my eighteenth birthday. At first I lived with my older sister, then I lodged in a room in someone else’s house. After that I moved into a small flat of my own. I was doing my A’ Levels at college and working evenings in a nightclub. But it was all the alone-time that gave route to my imagination and creativity – this was before smartphones and handheld games, and no TV for me. Music, books, drawing and writing were my passion. Loneliness had a positive result.
Fast-forward to 1989 and I’m living in my upstairs flat in Hull, alone again after the break-up of a long-term relationship. I have to lug my bicycle up and down a carpeted flight of stairs every time I go out. There’s a ‘brothel’ opposite and shouting often breaks out on the street at night. But I never feel insecure – until the day I hear banging in the locked room at the back of my flat. Dry-mouthed, I call the police on my heavy old dial-up phone, only to discover when I eventually dare to peer out of the bedroom window into the yard that it’s only my landlord. Good job because it was twenty minutes before a policeman arrived! After clearing it out, the landlord awarded the room to me at no extra rent so it was a win-win. I have such fond memories of that flat, and of 1989, when two of my novels were born.
My upper flat, looking a bit smarter these days (and probably heated, too!)
Giveaway: Tracey Scott-Townsend is offering seven copies of Another Rebecca as a giveaway during the Blog Tour. There are two paperbacks and five Kindle copies available. To enter the giveaway please click on the link below:
About the Author
Tracey is the author of four novels, The Last Time We Saw Marion, (2014) Of His Bones (stand-alone sequel to The Last Time We Saw Marion, 2017) and The Eliza Doll (2016). Another Rebecca was originally published by Inspired Quill in 2015 but has been enhanced and has a beautiful new cover for its re-release in September 2018 by Wild Pressed Books. Tracey’s novels have been described as both poetic and painterly.
Tracey is also a poet and a visual artist. All her work is inspired by the emotions of her own experiences and perceptions. She has a Fine Art MA (University of Lincoln) and a BA Hons Visual Studies (Humberside Polytechnic). She has exhibited throughout the UK (as Tracey Scott). Most importantly, she is the mother of four grown-up children, who have astonished and inspired her.