Series Inspiration – Naked Collection

Naked Collection Romantic Mysteries Karen Botha

Naked Truths, Naked Lies, Naked Souls. Karen BothaNaked Truths was the first book that I wrote. I’d been upcycling furniture in my spare time and was totally fed up with it taking over my house, so that had to stop. The issue though was that I needed a new hobby. Working as a therapist means that we have a lot of spare time throughout the day between clients and so that time needs filling with something.

I was having a good old moan to hubby about my new lack of something to fill my down time and he asked me, very simply, “What have you always wanted to do?”

I shrugged my shoulders and said, “I don’t know. Write a book?”

Now, strictly speaking I wrote several books when I was in my teens, but they’ve now disappeared from the face of the earth during a loft clean that my mum did a few years earlier. My every supportive hubby looked at me and said, “Well, do it then. There’s nothing to stop you.”

To be fair, I had absolutely no excuse. So, I went upstairs at that very point and started researching how you write a book. It turns out, that for me at least, how you write a book is to sit down and the stories just pour out.

That’s what happened with this one, and all my books since. As soon as I start to plan, then it’s game over and my writing becomes rigid and quite frankly rather too flat for my liking.

The one piece of information that came through loud and clear was write what you know. So I did.

And, Lucy was born. She was a massage therapist, based in a place not too far from where I live and surprisingly enough, she looks like me too! It’s a

Karen Botha Author
Lucy and Giles (ish) You’ll read about this in Naked Truths

shame that as the series went on, Lucy developed her own character and ended up being one of my least favorite characters. It’s funny how they take on their own traits once you give them a life!

Giles also emerged. His appearance, and much of his background is based on my gorgeous hubby. I couldn’t very well write a my first book entirely because of his enthusiasm for my ability to succeed and not give him one of the leading parts now could I? He may disagree as Giles turned out to be the guy who was the most questionable throughout.

Paula is based on the snarkier side of my personality as well as being a cross of personality traits and experiences from two of my very good friends.

So, Naked Truths was written, edited a million times and published. Pretty much everything that happens in this book is wildly based on some kind of conversation I’ve had with people I’ve come into contact with or my own experiences. It’s not to say that everything is true, I learned early on how to take a creative license, but the inspiration is all there from a glimmer of a conversation which I twist to be way more sensational.

Once I’d finished Naked Truths, my time was my own again.

But, not for long. It only took a few months before Lucy and Paula had fallen upon another crime in Naked Lies. This time it was way more heinous. One of our massage therapy clients is a Psychologist for children escaping war zones and I had several harrowing interviews with her. It’s important to me to put the stories of these people into a context that readers can learn from, without preaching.

Also within Naked Souls, there’s a part where I mention a cancer specialist hospital in South America. Again, this is true, it’s where one of my friends, who was on the verge of death was treated successfully.

I was about to start a new series, I wasn’t sure what, but I felt like a change. Then Naked Truths became an Amazon best seller the day before and I took that as a sign. And so, I sat up in bed the next morning and developed a concept with my hubby for Naked Souls. An hour later, I’d written the opening 5k words.

 

Naked Souls Karen Botha Series Inspiration
This is the canal near where I was brought up. One of the bodies was under the tree to the left of the picture.

As you can tell, this first series doesn’t have a theme that I thought about before I sat down and wrote.

But, here’s the thing.

What runs through these books is a piece of me.

Naked Truths is about my life and a ton of people I come into contact with. Naked Lies follows these characters through to their next life installment and is about a horror that I hold close to my heart. And Naked Souls is based all over the UK, but in places I know well, including the canals of Yorkshire where I was brought up.

That’s the guiding force within this series and I think this is what makes it special. That and it being my first.

If you’d like to buy the Naked Collection, you can grab your copy here.

Series Inspiration – Naked Collection
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