A regional daily paper has published an exclusive interview with the author behind a top-selling erotic novel.
The Shropshire Star landed the scoop with EL James, the author of Fifty Shades of Grey, which has sold more than 20 million copies worldwide.
EL James, whose real name is Erika Leonard, has kept a low profile after the erotic novel became an international hit but agreed to speak exclusively to the Star after connecting online with an editorial team member.
The paper began publishing the interview over two days on Monday, with coverage and promotion across print, websites and digital newspaper editions.
Chief reporter Sue Austin carried out the interview with the author after it was arranged by sub-editor Catherine Waring.
“We got chatting on there and there was a small group of us who’ve become real-life friends.
“I’m as astonished as anybody, her included, that the book has been such a success and I’m delighted she chose to speak to the Shropshire Star for her only UK press interview.”
In the interview, the novelist talks about how she was bemused by the book’s success and frustrated by the media hype surrounding it.
Sue said: “Initially reticent about answering questions, she soon relaxed, laughing about her research into erotic role play, which she said her husband Niall had helped with.
“It was a somewhat world weary EL James who admitted that her now trans-Atlantic lifestyle was completely exhausting.
“And she wistfully talked about the time when she could lose herself in her writing, sitting at home in a pair of leggings and over-sized sweatshirt. It was obvious that at the moment those days are just a memory.”
Editor Keith Harrison added: “It’s a fascinating read and a good old-fashioned scoop. Sue and Catherine did a great job and our thanks go to EL James.”