Sunday 6 December 2015

The Z Files: Emma Gray (EJ Greenway) ~ Cancer

Astrology ~ a bit of fun, a load of rubbish, or something to take seriously?

I invited around 70 writers/bloggers to write a piece about how typical they are of their sign, and how its traits affect their writing life ~ if at all...

Has your favourite writer been featured yet?  Links to all previous posts at the end of this one :)

Today I welcome a politically thrilling crab!  In other words, Cancer political thriller writer Emma Gray, who writes as E J Greenway.  She's written two parts of a political trilogy, Party Games and Power Play ~ and if anyone knows what she's writing about, Emma does; she's worked at Westminster for twelve years.  Go on, just take a look at her Amazon author page bio HERE; see, she's not making it all up :)

Tell us about your Cancerian self, Emma ~

Please note ~ Emma doesn't have a carapace, so has chosen 
to hide behind sunglasses instead...!!

"I have to admit this, but since Terry asked me to be part of the Z Files, I’ve been putting it off. I think it’s a great idea, and I sooo wanted to do it, it’s just I’m TERRIBLE at talking about myself as, like Cancerians tend to be, I’m rather crap at self-analysis. We can become insular, sure, and I’d like to think of myself as insightful and intuitive about others, but when it comes to seeing myself objectively, I think I’ll probably air on the (expected) negative… 

I did a bit of research before putting type to screen, and one particular website describe Cancerians as ‘over-imaginative and prone to fantasy…they may themselves possess some literary…talent’, so really I can’t object to that! Although the same site says Cancerians can be shorter than average height with brown hair and ‘they sometimes walk clumsily’! We’re not actual crabs, y’know!"

"Anyway, I don’t think I’ve got any psychic ability, which is an apparent trait, perhaps more of an ability to predict the behaviour of others once I’ve got to know them. This really helps in my writing, as my books are so character-driven, and I’m extremely loyal to my characters - I’m probably far more emotionally attached to them than I should be! I’m quite a dreamer sometimes, although I’m quite a practical person and I’m thorough in my day job so I don’t let dreaming get in the way (most of the time)! I’d much rather pour out emotion into my writing than in my own life, so I’m not one of those heart-on-sleeve types, and it is true that I’m rather cautious and dependable…God, I sound dull!"

"I also have quite a good memory, meaning I can remember small details about my storylines and characters, which can make the process a bit easier at times. But then, of course, I’ll have a sudden inferiority attack and walk away from my writing for sometimes months, oozing with pessimism. But like all good Cancerians, I’ll be loyal to the cause and determined to see it through, so I’ll get back on the writing horse, keep calm and carry on!"

I asked Emma to tell us a bit about Book Three, currently in progress...

"I'm really excited about book three in my trilogy, End Game, as I've had a lot of political inspiration over the past few months! It picks up six months after Power Play, and the Opposition benches are living in fear of their tyrannical yet ultimately insecure leader Colin Scott. End Game follows the lead characters from my previous two books, but one in particular has a difficult decision to make about the path he must take if Scott is to be overthrown."

I have huge respect for writers like Emma who manage to run a demanding career and a family, and still find time to write - and do posts like this for me!  You can follow Emma on Twitter and read more about her on her blog.

Now...  which famous writer crabs shall I choose?

Ultimate thriller man, with a government conspiracy or two himself ~ Dan Brown....

...and historical fiction maestro Hilary Mantel ~ because Wolf Hall and her other works are all about politics, are they not?  A politician more devious than Thomas Cromwell would be hard to find ~ okay, he lost his head, but he should have known Anne of Cleves was never going to work!)

Next up: a horse loving Sagittarius!

Previous Posts:
Leo and Aries: Terry Tyler and Julia Proofreader 
LeoRose Edmunds, Anne Goodwin, Alex Johnson,
AriesJoanne Phillips, Trisha Ashley, Cynthia Harrison
GeminiHaydn Lee, Norah Colvin, Jerome Dumont, John Privilege,  
Shelley Wilson,
Aquarius and Capricorn: Nicky Black
AquariusCathy Ryan, Lynda Renham,
CapricornGeorgia Rose, Wendy Janes, Annie Lyons, Steffany R
SagittariusAdrienne Vaughan, Rachel Amphlett, Wendy J Lennox, 
  Katrina Mountfort
Cancer:June Kearns, Sarah Boucher, Katie Oliver, Mark Barry
VirgoLouise Marley, Elizabeth Ducie, Barb Taub,
PiscesLizzie Lamb, Julie Haiselden, Maria Savva, Sacha Black,
ScorpioGen Gannon, Stacey Garrity, Gemma Lawrence, Robert Leigh, Catherine Hokin, Jenny Twist,
TaurusValerie-Anne Baglietto, Val Poore,
LibraTom Hocknell, Jen Ammoscato Joanne B



  1. Wow! Emma is in the right place to find material for political thrillers, but you're right Terry! How does she find the time to write! Still, it sounds as if some of her Cancerian characteristics are giving her a helping hand. I think I might try this trilogy. It sounds good! Nice to meet you here, Emma!

  2. Hi Vallypee, lovely to meet you too! Finding time to write is quite challenging, but being quite the typical Cancerian in lots of ways I'm loyal to my cause, so even if I have a break I know I'll come back to it. And thanks for saying you'll give my books a go, although it's not quite the trilogy yet, I'm (slowly) working on it! :)

  3. Oh gosh, Val, of course it's you! Silly me!

  4. Love this post and you've done a great analysis Emma. It's lovely to read so much more about you and you don't sound dull at all (although that is coming from a cautious Goat ;-) so what so I know!)

    1. Thanks Georgia, I think this zodiac self-analysis is a great idea of Terry's, I've actually discovered more about myself too in the process of research for the post. It's been really interesting, especially to see other people's posts too.

    2. Oh I did too Emma! Not knowing much about this before I did some research then found myself nodding along going 'That is so me.' Interesting stuff!!

    3. I'm so glad you've got more out of it than just another promo opp, ladies! I think I might do a post when they're all finished, picking out the most hilariously apt sentences for each sign.... reading Jan Ruth's again just now gave me the idea!!