Monday, February 9, 2015

Sharon Black's Debut Novel: Going Against Type

Sharon Black
Please join me in welcoming author Sharon Black as a guest. Her debut novel, Going Against Type, is now available! With the inspiration of an American movie classic, she has created a very fun romantic comedy. Take it away, Sharon!

Going Against Type is a romantic comedy, set against the backdrop of Dublin newspapers. It’s the story of two rival columnists, who write under pen names, and who fall in love, each not knowing that they are dating the enemy!

I worked as a journalist for national newspapers in Ireland – that’s my background. Which made it easier to set the book in newspapers. But my inspiration was an old Hollywood film, Woman of the Year, starring Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracy. 

In Woman of the Year, Hepburn plays a high brow newspaper pundit, who rubbishes sport. Tracy is a sports columnist who leaps to its defense and attacks Hepburn. In the film, they are forced to work together, and quickly fall in love.

Going Against Type, I turned the stereotypes on their head, so my heroine, Charlotte, is a sports reporter and a bit of a tomboy. My hero, Derry, is a fashion writer and gossip columnist, and he starts the war of words and wit, when he attacks Charlotte’s column Side Swipe, after she slags off footballers who get involved with promoting big brand fashion. So the fun begins!


'Sweetheart, you can't ask Derry to fly solo in a room full of couples.'
Fiona turned to smile at him.
'I'm going to invite Charlotte, my old school friend.'
'The sports writer? Yep, I can see Derry really going for her!'
'I'm not asking Derry to sail off into the sunset with her,’ Fiona said mildly. ‘She’s a smart, down-to-earth girl. And gorgeous looking!’
‘I don’t think Derry needs any help finding a girl,’ Jack said. ‘Look, don’t you get it? Derry’s ideal woman is an underwear model with the mental agility of an obtuse snail.’
Fiona couldn’t help laughing.
‘I’m not doing this just for Derry. Charlotte’s a tomboy, sure. She doesn’t suffer fools. But there’s a thin line between self-contained and lonely. Derry might rattle her cage. Shake her up a little.’

Sharon, thanks so much for joining me today and telling us a bout your new book! Great story line--I love how you've reversed the Tracy and Hepburn roles! To find out more about Sharon, visit her blog,, and author page, Sharon Black Author Page. And be sure to check out Going Against Type! 


Sharon Black said...

Good morning, Maria, and thanks a million for having me here today. I wonder, did anyone else love the screen partnership of Katharine Hepburn and Spencer Tracey as much as I did? I adored Tracey, because he seemed so laconic and laid back. And sometimes he'd come completely out of left field. And Hepburn always played such sharp, witty characters. Together, I think they sizzled.

Maria McKenzie said...

Good morning, Sharon! You are so welcome. I love Tracy and Hepburn together! They did indeed sizzle;). I believe Woman of the Year was their first film together. Their last was Guess Who's Coming to Dinner. Even in old age, they were quite the duo!

shelly said...

Opposites always make for a great story. So much good chemistry.

William Kendall said...

I do like the premise, Sharon! Maria, thanks for featuring Sharon today.

Norma Beishir said...

I loved the pairing of Tracey and Hepburn, too!

Sharon Black said...

I think you're right, Shelly. Opposites attract. I had nearly forgotten that last film they made. It was brilliant! When you think about it, so many of the more modern films down the years have drawn inspiration from those old Hollywood movies of the 30s and 40s. And others have simply been straight remakes!

Maria McKenzie said...

@Shelly: Opposites certainly are more exciting together;).

@William: You're welcome! Glad you enjoyed reading about Sharon's book:).

@Norma: No couple could ever replace them!

@Sharon: I'm always surprised by the remakes that are exactly the same. It's more fun to shake things up like you've done in Going Against Type!

Intangible Hearts said...

Oh dear, I'm a sucker for newspaper stories. Thanks for posting this one!

Sharon Black said...

I actually love newspaper stories too. As films, they always seem to be dramatised beautifully. His Girl Friday and The Front Page are just two that come to mind. Great stories!

Maria McKenzie said...

@Eve: Those stories are fun! Aren't newspapers your old stomping ground?

@Sharon: I've never seen The Front Page, but I love His Girl Friday!