Interview: Natasha Carthew opens up about Only The Ocean and more


Natasha Carthew’s ‘Only The Ocean’ is a story of survival and courage in the midst of darkness. If you’re a fan of Patrick Ness and Sarah Crossan, you need to stick this on your Christmas lists right now.

We sat down with Natasha to learn more about the techniques she uses for writing and more.

How would you sum up Only the Ocean in five words to entice someone to read it who may not know what it’s about?

Powerful. Brave. Beautiful. Love Story.

The cover for ‘Only the Ocean’ is absolutely gorgeous, did you have any say in the process of the cover art coming about?

No, but luckily Bloomsbury are one of the best publishers at finding the essence of a story and translating it into a stunning cover. I love that the heart at the centre of the cover represents both Kel’s heart defect and the love story between the two girls.

Kel is an incredibly strong character with a lot of courage, was she inspired by anyone in your own life?

Kel’s character was inspired by all the young women who have had to endure pain and suffering growing up and who have overcome adversity with courage and determination to heal, grow and flourish.

What inspired you to write a book set in a water-logged world?

I wanted to write a huge swash-buckling adventure set on the high seas as background to a beautiful love story between two very different girls.

Can you describe what a typical day of writing looks like for you?

I write outside either in my cabin that I built from scrap wood or wandering the fields and woods that surround my home. There are so many reasons to write wild, the first reason being freedom. I’m drawn to writing outside because of the independence it gives me; there are no distractions, no other voices but mine and I can escape to whichever world I want. Writing outside also helps me to clear my head and become focused. I’ve written all my books outside.

Have you ever experienced writers’ block and if so, how did you overcome it?

I don’t believe in writers’ block. My advice is if you’re struggling with your writing get outside and walk/think/work any difficulties you may have in the open air away from your desk. Without paper, computers and notebooks you will find that the best ideas and solutions will stay with you when you get home, box-fresh ready to write down.

Image Source: Giphy

You’ve written both poetry and YA books, how does the writing experience differ between the two?

It’s all connected. I’m told my prose is quite poetic and I think subconsciously the rhythm of poetry is always there. I also write Literary Fiction for adults and I’m currently writing a performance poem, which is great fun.

Natasha’s ‘Only The Ocean’ is available to buy in the UK and US now.

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