A Symphony of Heart Strings
By T.E. Hodden
Interview with T.E. Hodden:
Crystal: Today I have the pleasure of hosting T.E. Hodden. Welcome! I am excited to have you here today. Would you share a little bit about yourself with us today?
T.E. Hodden: Hi. My name is Tom, and I am a writer from Kent in the UK. Well, really I'm a control room operator in a specialised niche of the transport industry, but I have been self publishing for a few years now, and have a few romance stories published with Roane in their anthologies. A lot of my work is short, sweet, slightly blokey romances, intended for a quick read on a commute, or in a lunch break, but I have dabbled in a few different genres (some more satisfyingly than others).
Crystal: What are you currently working on?
T.E. Hodden: Well, my fantasy romance, A Symphony Of Heartstrings is being released by Roane right about now. It is the story of the man who is pulling strings behind every love story, nudging people towards their best chance of finding their One True. I'm also busy writing something for my Threadbare Hearts line of self published stories, but that is in the early stages and may go nowhere.
Crystal: Where did you come up with the idea for either your current release or your current WIP?
T.E. Hodden: Symphony of Heartstrings came from my fascination with the rules and customs certain types of love story follow. I wanted to play with the cliches, and the way stories work. That is rather grand for the story that followed. In essence I wanted somebody to glimpse of what was behind the curtain, and slip from our world to something with a little more magic. It also came from a desire to play with the myth and magic that has always been associated with London. Some of the folklore is strange, beautiful, and utterly at odds to the view of London a lot of people have.
Crystal: Do you have a favorite snack that like to munch on while writing? If so would you mind sharing what it is with us?
T.E. Hodden: Jelly babies, or other squishy, gooey, penny mix sweets.
Crystal: Do you have a favorite scene you would like to share with us?
Time for a practical demonstration.
I step into a sandwich shop. It is busy with the lunch hour rush. Jimmy is sat at one of the tables, staring into his book, and trying not to think. He is a heavy guy, big and round with jowls and a frown. His connection to the Loom is worn thin,and a lot of his strings play sour, dull, notes. He is nearly forty, but has never been kissed, and never known that warm fuzzy glow in his chest.
What has known is shame, self doubt, and fear. When he felt the warning signs he thought as he was always taught to think, that they were unnatural and made him less of a man.
There is a girl at his office who likes him. She is friendly and flirty. He responds politely, but is so convinced of his self image that he thinks she is quietly mocking him. He sees no malice in her, but he thinks there is gentle teasing at his expense.
Kelly is in the queue. He is waiting on a chicken and avocado baguette to go with his bottle of soda. He is thirty nine, tall, burly and jolly. He has a kind laugh and gets on with everybody in the office. He recognises Jimmy. They bump into each other in the office kitchen, making coffees. They talk about cricket and football waiting on the kettle.
Jimmy nods for Kelly to join him. They joke about the latest email from head office. The "Fair culture flowchart" is a policy that spends three thousands words telling them, in essence, not to be dicks.
Neither men see me standing by their table. I pluck the string that binds them. It plays a sweet note, made heavy by Jimmy's doubts. I knock his drink into his lap. Jimmy squawks in surprise and Kelly drops to his knows, mopping it Jimmy's lap with his napkins. Jimmy panics at the touch.
"Hey. Let me." Jimmy laughs a little. "If you don't mind where you put your hands you will do something you will regret."
I stoop down to Kelly's ear. I whisper: "Will you?"
Kelly gives a dirty laugh. "I wouldn't regret it. would you?"
For a moment they hold each other's eyes. Kelly slowly, and deliberately draws a a finger across Jimmy's thigh. He draws a smile from Jimmy's lips. They both relax and laugh, but Kelly keeps the mischief in his smile. He moves his chair closer.
Jimmy neither regrets nor resists letting Kelly's hand find his leg under the table. The pair giggle like schoolgirls, as they talk in whispers. They are soon agreeing to meet for a meal as friends. Just to see if they get along...
I am confident they will get along fine. When the excitement and passion cools, their connection will become something else. Something stronger than steel with a sound like violins.
I step away unnoticed. I have other places to be.
Crystal: When you are not busy writing wonderful stories to keep us lucky readers entertained, what do you like to do? Do you have a hobby?
T.E. Hodden: Writing is my hobby. But I also love to cook, play board games, role playing games, and to doodle art. A lot of my self published works have my own art or photographs as the cover.
Crystal: Do you have a favorite background noise you like to having going while you write (TV, Music, kids playing)?
T.E. Hodden: I will write with the TV or music. I'm not a massive music fan. Song lyrics tend to distract me. When I want to switch off, drive, or cook, I have podcasts or radio dramas for company. When I write, I want something to tune out the world, to help me tune into whatever world I am playing with.
Crystal: Thanks for visiting. It has been a pleasure having you visit today. Can you think of anything else you would like to share with us today?
T.E. Hodden: The rest of Roane's Novella Niblet range are worth a look. I'll be honest: Mine is probably the weakest link in the series. Check out the others. I very much doubt you would be dissapointed.
Today Bob is assigned to help Jenny find love. But there is something more than bad luck working against the quirky librarian. Bob might have to save her life, before he can help her find love.
And he can't do that from the shadows....