Characters should always have something to hide, says Kate Forster.

Close Up started with a character and a secret. Once I had that, and I created the family of other characters, I was off and writing.

Picture Credit: David Gormon

A character should always have something to hide, this is where the drama come from; trying to hide the secret, running from it, and then the eventual reveal of the mystery, and it’s effect on everyone in the book.

In writing Close Up, I create three very different women at different stages in their life, not as much in age, but in their careers and their personal life.

One them, Maggie, is facing ageing in an industry where ageing isn’t applauded, instead it is seen as a weakness. The other, Zoe, is on the verge of everything she has ever wanted professionally, except she battles sexism and difficult choices at every turn, and finally Dylan, straight from New York to LA, where she is looking for her birth mother and hiding her desire from her adoptive parents.

Each of the women has their own battles but I wanted to keep them real and relevant. Friendship struggles, growing up, falling in love, divorce, and illnesses are just some of the themes in the book.

It is only when they face their own truths do they begin to overcome them.

For Maggie it’s falling in love for the first time, for Dylan it’s using her professional power for the good of her project, not just her personal gain, and for Dylan it’s accepting that while she might never find her mother, she might find something else as beautiful instead.

Part of the Close Up is the back-story of how it is possible to escape abject poverty and how having one person who believes in you is sometimes all you need to be able to move forward to something better.

I loved writing it, and I hope you love reading it.

Close Up

Close Up follows the lives of three women with the same goal; each is searching for the actress who will score the role of a lifetime. Zoe Greene manages the careers of Hollywood’s biggest and brightest and she’ll do anything to help them – and herself – get ahead. Actress Maggie Hall has been America’s sweetheart for nearly twenty years. She’s about to learn that there are two things in life you just can’t fight against: growing older and falling in love. Young, beautiful and defiant Dylan Mercer has run away from New York to try her luck in Hollywood. Unlike most hopefuls, she’s not looking for fame and fortune, Dylan is on a quest to find her birth mother.

But in Hollywood ambition and desire can bring out the worst in people. In a town built on illusions, believing you can escape your past might just be the biggest illusion of all.


Kate Forster is a writer of books, television and film, author of The Perfect Location and Seduction as well as numerous YA books. Kate trained at the prestigious WAAPA and worked as an actor and jazz singer for many years as well as hosting a weekly gossip show on Melbourne Radio. She went on to run her own marketing and advertising agency before turning to her passion of writing, which she now does full time.

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