Here is my interview with Samantha Swain

Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.

 

Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?

My name is Samantha Swain.  My age, well, I stopped telling that when I was 25.  I will admit that I’m in my 40’s.

Fiona: Where are you from?

I’m originally from a suburb of Chicago, Illinois.  Currently residing outside of Atlanta, Georgia.

 Fiona: A little about your self (ie,  your education, family life, etc.)

.I am a writer of true crime.  While working in a Criminal Investigation Division I have found my niche of using my desire to be a writer to write what people are natural spectators of such as what is watched on television.

 Fiona: Tell us your latest news.

My latest news is that I am working on my 4th book; developing a board game name #TRUE CRIME; developing a wine; and composing a 2019 calendar that promotes reading and writing.

Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?

I began writing professionally about 2 years ago.  Honestly, I didn’t consider writing professionally until my 1st book was published.  It was at that point did my passion for writing become solidified.

Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?

After much consideration, I first considered myself a writer once I got the go-ahead from a publishing company.

Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?

As a writer of true crime, I’m inspired from everyday life.  Whether it be from the unfortunate circumstances of victims or the plots of alleged suspects.

Fiona: How did you come up with the title?

I currently have 3 published books.  The titles are centeredaround the cases/stories.

Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?

I wouldn’t know how to categorize my writing style, but the challenges present themselves because they are true (non-fiction).  At that point, I get to decide how deep I want it to be.  I have to keep my readers in mind.

Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

Each of my books are realistic.  For an added example, my 2nd book, “Three-Eighths ID”, is based on a culture whereby what they do according to a tradition is actually against the law.

Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?

 I do not have to travel.

Fiona: Who designed the covers?

For each of my books, I’ve used covers from the Amazon site, but as a way to branch out I think I will use a cover creator outside of the site.

 Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

In my books there are no hidden messages that readers should have to grasp.  If nothing else each book will prompt readers to think.

Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?  Who is your favorite writer, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?

Right now there are no new authors that peak my interest.  My favorite writers are definitely old school – Agatha Kristy, Sherlock Holmes, etc.

Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.

 Based on preference, I have kept knowing that I was a writer to a select few family members and in my work environment.

Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?

I for sure see writing as a career.  Other than being a parent, writing is something that gets me excited!

Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?

The only thing that I would change regarding my latest book is covering its detail.  A customer provided that tidbit of information.  That let me know that I need to be sure to write as if I didn’t know anything about the law.  Strictly from a readers point of view.

 Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?

Other than me playing the lead my 1st choice would be Nicole Ari Parker.  Honestly, I would leave a decision like that up to movie production staff.

Fiona: Any advice for other writers?

I wholeheartedly would advise new writers to latch onto experienced writers.  Emulate them.

Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?

Keep reading!  Spread your wings when it comes to genres.

Fiona: What book are you reading now?

Only books that I’m reading right now are manuscripts.  I have 7 on stand-by.

Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?

Charlotte’s Web” was the 1st book that I read.  That brings back such great memories.

Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?

It doesn’t take a comedian to make me laugh.  It could simple be a person with a good sense of humor that would make me laugh.

It’s hard to narrow down what makes me cry.

Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?

I would love to have met Maya Angelou.  Not only did she endure a hardship that caused her to not speak for a portion of her life, but she grew to be a great figure in the literary world.

Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?

 Nothing out of the ordinary; shopping, getting together with friends.

Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?

My favoritetv show was Castle, but that has since ended.  Re-runs still show.  I also like the CSI series.

Fiona: Favorite foods, colors,  music?

Mexican food is my absolute favorite food.  My favoritecolor is brown, or any earth-tone color.  As with music, I like all kinds, but I’m really into Neo-Soul.

Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?

If I couldn’t write anymore I would probably sit and stare at the wall.  I find it hard to imagine not being able to write; stuck with a secular job.

Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?

I would spend my time writing and conversing with my daughter.

Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?

What would be put on my headstone should be left up to a loved one.

Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?

Amazon Authors page USA  https://www.amazon.com/Samantha-Swain/e/B01LWZ191X/ref=sr_tc_2_0?qid=1544523536&sr=1-2-ent

UK  https://www.amazon.co.uk/Samantha-Swain/e/B01LWZ191X/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

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Here is my interview with Anna Blakely

Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.

 

Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?

Anna: Hello! My name is Anna Blakely. I’m forty-three years old (though most days, I act more like I’m twelve!). I am so excited and thankful for this opportunity to share a little about myself and my writing!

Fiona: Where are you from?

Anna: I live in rural, northwest Missouri, USA.

Fiona: A little about yourself (ie,  your education, family life, etc.).

Anna: I have been married to an amazing man (Whom I often refer to as my oldest child!) for a little over eighteen years. We have four wonderful children and several rescue animals, including a donkey and a partially blind horse.

I have a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice, as well as a bachelor’s degree in elementary education. Most people would probably think this an odd combination, but you would be surprised at how closely they are related these days! LOL

I currently spend my days teaching, and my evenings and weekends writing…you know, between playing taxi driver, chef, maid, and whatever else my family needs me to be.

My dream is to be successful enough with my writing that I can stay home and do that full-time.

Fiona: Tell us your latest news.

Anna: I am SUPER excited to tell you about my new romantic suspense series, “R.I.S.C.”, which debuts in January 2019! Here is a little bit about the series:

R.I.S.C. (Rescue, Intel, Security, and Capture) is an elite, private security company owned by former Delta Force Operator, Jake McQueen.

With Jake as their leader, R.I.S.C.’s Alpha Team takes on a multitude of jobs while specializing in high-risk situations. Some of their jobs are government sanctioned, but they also take on jobs for private clients when the need arises.

Working closely with Homeland Security, the five tough-as-nails men and one badass woman who make up Alpha Team will stop at nothing to protect the ones they love. Each member of R.I.S.C. is former military, including two SEALS.

“Taking a Risk, Part One” is the first book in the series, and brings you the first half of Jake and Olivia’s story. From the very first page, readers will be taken on an emotional—and sometimes terrifying—journey as Jake and Olivia struggle to survive while escaping members of a major drug cartel in a Venezuelan jungle.

Book 2 in the series is “Taking a Risk, Part Two.” Like Part One, this is also a full-length novel, and is filled with nail-biting suspense as Jake and Olivia strive to finally find their HEA.

Jake and Olivia’s storyis the only one in the series that will have two parts. (There was just too much going on with these two to fit it all into one! LOL).  As the series continues, each member of Alpha Team will get their own story, as well their HEA.

Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?

Anna: I have loved romantic suspense stories since I was a little girl. I remember my favourite books,TV shows, and movies were always the ones with lots of action and a hero saving the damsel in distress. Back then, I’d be reading a story or watching a show, and if I didn’t like the way it all played out, I would re-write the scenes in my mindto go the way I wanted it to.

It wasn’t until about five years ago, however, that I decided to try to write a story of my own. As to the why…that’s really hard to put into words (which probably sounds ironic, given that writing is what I do now! LOL).

One day I got this idea for a storyline and these two characters—Jake and Olivia—popped into my head. I started writing down a conversation between the two. Before I knew it, I had several pages filled front to back. I decided I was going to do my best to tell their story, even if it never went any further than my notebook.

Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?

Anna: The first time I felt as though I was an actual writer was when I saw “Taking a Risk” (Parts One and Two) listed on the major platforms for presale. I’ve been an avid reader for years. Seeing MY books listed with all the others was a very special moment.

Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?

Anna: This is actually harder to answer than it probably should be. I have no clue where the idea came from…there was no specific incident or personal experience that inspired this story…it just sort of came to meout of the blue. It’s how every storyline I’ve come up with for this series has happened. I’ll often get an idea for a scene while doing something totally normal, like taking my dog outside or putting away laundry.

It’s funny, though…After I got the idea for this first book, it was like a flood gate of new characters and storylines opened up, and it hasn’t stopped. I guess you could say I’ve felt “compelled” to write since then.

Fiona: How did you come up with the title?

Anna: I wanted Jake’s business to have a name that reflected everything he and his team did to help those unable to help themselves, so I came up with “R.I.S.C.”  As soon as that idea was born, I knew each book in the series needed to have the word “Risk” in its title. I already know the storylines for each of the books in this series, so I’ve come up with a “Risk” title that fits each story’s hero and heroine. Of course, readers will have to wait until closer to each book’s release date to find out its title. I mean, come on…a girl’s gotta have SOME secrets, right?

Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?

Anna: I’m not sure if there’s a specific label I would use to describe my writing. I want my readers not only to envision all parts of my stories, (the scenery, characters and their actions/emotions, etc.). I also want them to FEEL while they are reading, and not just see the words on the pages.

One of the best compliments I’ve gotten was when one of my beta readers and my content editor both told me they’d cried while reading Taking a Risk, Part One (each crying at different scenes). To know my words reached them on such an emotional level…it was like, “Wow! I did that!”

Another moment that made me think I could really pull this writing thing off, was when I got a text from a beta reader that read, “Holy S***! I did NOT see that coming!”

For me, especially as a brand new author, comments like those make all of my hard work worth it.

Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

Anna: While my stories are all fiction, I have strived to make as much of the book as realistic as I possibly could. I worked hard to put myself in my character’s shoes, and dug deep to think about how the different characters would feel, act, and react in each situation. I do have a friend who is former Special Forces, and I was lucky enough to have him advise me on a couple of scenes, as far as technicalities were concerned. That was really cool. Other than that, the book is a creation from my very own, twisted imagination.

Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?

Anna: I did not travel for Jake and Olivia’s story, however I did refer to a world map several times. I would love to have the opportunity to travel in the future to help with making my writing as realistic as possibleI just need to sell a few more books first in order to pay for it! LOL

Fiona: Who designed the covers?

Anna: The AMAZING Lori Jackson designed the covers for both Taking a Risk, Part One and Taking a Risk, Part Two. She did a spectacular job making the covers EXACTLY as I had imagined them to be. I plan to use her for the entire series!

Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Anna: I feel as though there are several messages one could take from reading this two-part story, but I’d have to say the main one is…True love is always a risk worth taking!

Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?  Who is your favourite writer, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?

Anna: I get SO excited when a new author grabs my attention. Unfortunately, I haven’t had time to read much of anything these past couple of months between working my full-time job, being wife and mother, and writing. (Who knew it took THIS much work to turn a pencil and paper story into a published novel?)

As far as my favourites, there are simply too many to narrow them all down to just one. I really enjoy reading Caitlyn O’Leary, Elle Boon, Cynthia Eden, and CristinHarber (her Titan Series is one of my all-time favs!)…and many, many others. These authors each bring something unique to the table, but I also know when I pick up one of their books, I’m going to get the type of suspenseful love story I’ve always craved.

Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.

Anna: Ah, man…do I have to pick just one? Here’s the thing…I have been blessed beyond words to have not one, but TWO very successful authors as mentors throughout this entire process. It’s a long story and I won’t bore you with all the details, but the short of it is, through a social mediafan group (I was the fan LOL), I was able to connect with USA Today Best Selling Authors, Caitlyn O’Leary and Elle Boon. Both women have been invaluable mentors and friends. Through their help and encouragement, they made me realize my dream to become a published author was an actual possibility.

Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?

Anna: Absolutely! I can spend thirteen hours a day writing, editing, etc. and, while I might be tired by the end of the day, I still love every, single minute of it! To be able to do this as a career would be a dream come true!

Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?

Anna: Nope! I mentioned earlier that this story has been running through my mind for years, and I am proud of the way I’ve written it. (Unless there are typos I’ve missed…I’d definitely change those LOL).

Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?

Anna: I learned a TON. Some of what I learned came from the research I did for my book’s primary location. I also learned how a Spec Ops guy can get loose after having his hands tied securely behind his back…I mean, you never know when that little titbit could come in handy, right?

Most importantly, I learned a lot about myself as a writer. I learned what areas I needed to work on and things to look out for when writing my next book, as well as where my creative strengths lie.

Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?

Anna: Ooh!Great question!I’m going to have to go with Hawaii Five-0’s Alex O’Laughlin…Specifically, the way he looked in the show’s seventh season. The character he plays on the show—Steve McGarrett—was a former SEAL. He’s a total badass, but also has a heart of gold…not to mention a smokin’ hot body!

That’s how I picture Taking A Risk’s Jake…he has a confidence that’s just this side of arrogant, but deep down, all he wants to do is help people who can’t help themselves and protect the people he loves. Oh, and did I mention he’ssexy as hell? LOL

Fiona: Any advice for other writers?

Anna: As my husband has told me from day one, you will never know unless you try! If you have a passion for writing, then GO FOR IT! Do not let anyone tell you it’s impossible. I’m proof that it’s not!

Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?

Anna:Thank you for “Taking a Risk”on a new author like me! (See what I did there? Wink wink).But seriously, from the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU!

Fiona: What book are you reading now?

Anna:I’m in between books right now, but am anxiously awaiting Caitlyn O’Leary’s new release, “Her Captivated Hero,” which goes live on December 31st!

Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?

Anna: Actually, I do! I learned to read with the Flintstones book ,”How Pebbles Got Her Name.” I have a very vivid memory of lying on my belly on my parents’ bedroom floor while reading that book to my mom.

Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?

Anna: My family makes me laugh…EVERY. SINGLE DAY. We truly have the best little corner of the world, as far as our relationship with each other. My husband and I joke and banter back and forth constantly (all in good fun), and our kids have the BEST sense of humor ever! Our youngest son is probably the biggest jokester in the family, and there is seriously not a day that goes by that he does not make me laugh.

As for the crying, I’d have to say family, as well. The thought of something happening to any of them is a guaranteed way to bring on the tears.

Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?

Anna: I would love to meet my great grandmother and grandfather on my mom’s side. They both passed well before I was born, but I would have loved to have had the chance to know them.They met on the boat as they travelled from Czechoslovakia to America to start a new life. What better romance story to hear than one like that?

Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?

Anna: My favourite “Me-time” hobby is reading. I also make cakes for people as a side-job/hobby, and have been known to belt out some karaoke on occasion. However, my absolute favourite thing to do is spend time laughing and hanging with my incredible family.

Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?

Anna: My taste in shows/films has not changed since I was a little girl. I still like action, as well as psychological thrillers. Right now my “can’t miss” shows include SEAL Team, Chicago PD, and Hawaii 5-0. I also like all of the NCIS shows, as well as the other Chicago shows (Med and Fire), MacGyver (I was a huge fan of the original, and now my son loves the new version, so I watch it with him every Friday), and Criminal Minds.

 Fiona: Favorite foods, colors,  music?

Anna: I love just about anything pasta, and for sweets, I’m a sucker for Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. I’m a total carb junkie, but I’m TRYING to limit those as much as I can…it’s a daily struggle LOL. Oh, and I believe that coffee is the true source of life!

My favourite color is navy blue, and I love all kinds of music. I will listen to anything from country, to rock, to pop and hip-hop and rap. It all just depends on my mood.

Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?

Anna: Hmm…that’s a hard question.I guess if I could no longer write, I’d probably have a much cleaner house and less dirty laundry…Maybe.

 Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?

Anna: With my husband and children. At the end of the day, there’s nowhere else I’d rather be!

 Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?

Anna: “Here lies Anna Blakely, the wife of the luckiest man in the world.”

Okay, fine..here’s a serious one:

Loving Wife, Mother, and Mimi: Creator of dreams and believer in love.”

 Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?

 Anna: As of now, I do not have a blog. I’m hoping to have one in the future, once I get this new career of mine up and running a little more steadily. I have the domain, annablakely.com, however my website designer is just getting started on putting it all together this week.(I had NO idea how much went into writing, publishing, and advertising a novel!)

I encourage anyone wanting the latest news on my books and upcoming events, to friend me on Facebook (Anna Blakely, Author https://www.facebook.com/annablakely.author.7  ) and follow me on Instagram(annablakely) and Twitter (https://twitter.com/ablakelyauthor ). They can also join my FB group, Blakely’s Bunch  https://www.facebook.com/groups/354218335396441/   for updates, ARC opportunities, and contests.

Buy Links:

TAKING A RISK, PART ONE:

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2r48zxD

B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/taking-a-risk-…/1129936950…
iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1444797409
KOBO: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/taking-a-risk-5g

TAKING A RISK, PART TWO:

Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/TAKING-RISK-PART-R-I-S-C-Book-ebook/dp/B07KX295NN/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1544503229&sr=8-1&keywords=taking+a+risk+part+two

B&N: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/taking-a-risk-part-two-anna-blakely/1129945688?ean=2940161957790

iBooks: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1444752024

KOBO: (Coming soon!)

Here is my interview with Nathan Lowell

Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.

 

Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?

Nathan Lowell, 66

Fiona: Where are you from?

I grew up in southern Maine but I’ve lived as far west (and north) as Kodiak, AK. These days I live out on the high plains northeast of Denver, CO

Fiona: A little about your self (ie,  your education, family life, etc.).

Wife, two kids, three cats, three degrees. The wife tagged me a long time ago, but the kids, cats, and degrees are all relatively recent.

Fiona: Tell us your latest news.

I wrote my 16th novel for NaNoWriMo. I started at zero and ended the draft with 106k words on the 21st. I spent the last 10 days cleaning up the draft and putting it out to a flock of betas while I started working up a new project.

Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?

It was probably the story I crayoned onto my bedroom wall when I was four. I remember it had colorful characters … one was red, one was green. The editors rejected it with a bucket of soapy water and a sponge.

Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?

I’ve always been a writer. The consideration waxed and waned. Every decade or so I’d try to write something serious but life and the industry got in the way.

Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?

My first actual book was my doctoral dissertation in 2003. My academic advisor applied a lot of inspiration. Maybe that’s really more motivation than inspiration.

My first novel was a confluence of influences. In 2004 I discovered podcasting. In 2005 I discovered podcast fiction at Podiobooks.com (now Scribl). My day job was developing content for distant delivery to graduate students around the country. I wanted to see if podcasting would allow me to deliver high bandwidth content to people who lived in rural areas where dial-up was the only meaningful access. In 2007, I sat down to write a novel that I could podcast.

I’ve been a science fiction fan since the day they let me into the elementary school library and I could pick out the books with little rocketship and atom stickers on the spines. So, I knew I wanted to write a sf novel. I also knew I wanted to write “something different” – something that hadn’t been done much, if at all. So, I started with “what if?”

What if we sent freighters instead of frigates? What if it was UPS and not the Navy?
What if the main character wasn’t rich or powerful or in control? What if it was just a guy trying to make a living on an interstellar freighter?
What if the most violence was a fist fight?

Could I write that kind of story and find an audience for space opera where I didn’t blow something up every 15 pages and save the universe twice by the end of the story?

So, on January 12, 2007, I sat down and wrote the first line — “Call me Ishmael.”

Yup. I stole it from Melville.

Nine novels later … Ishmael Horatio Wang is still going strong. I’ve had two spin-offs in the same universe and a fantasy series that grew out of a NaNoWriMo challenge in 2009.

 Fiona: How did you come up with the title?

The first book was Quarter Share. That’s the lowest pay grade for hands and since the main character was just starting out, that seemed like a good title.

Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?

I try to write stories about people and what it means to be a person. In SF, where so much of it is about the science or the aliens or the technology, it’s sometimes a challenge to keep stories grounded in “What would a real person feel like in this situation?”

Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

I graduated from high school during the Viet Nam War. In order to avoid being drafted, I enlisted in the US Coast Guard. I spent five years and served part of that time aboard ship. That shipboard experience lets me paint a picture of what it’s like for the crew who keep the ship running while the officers are busy with “why are we doing this again?”

Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?

Only in my mind.

Fiona: Who designed the covers?

Most of my SF covers are from Dan Sawyer at Artistic Whispers. South Coast is by Steve Cousins, a UK artist.

My fantasy covers for the Tanyth Fairport series are all by Kip Ayers.

Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Not as such. With 16 novels (and 17 on the word processor) I’ve found that the stories spin out faster if I have a theme, but every book has a different theme.

Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?  Who is your favorite writer, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?

I’m really fond of Glynn Stewart, L J Cohen, Audrey Faye, Sydney Swanson … It’s a long list. What I like is that they all write stories from the heart – even when they’re cutting that heart out of somebody else. (j/k)

Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.

All the fans of my podcast. I delivered eight novels in audio. They pestered me until I promised to publish the books so they could read them for themselves.

And then they complained, because when they read them, they still heard my voice.

Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?

It’s my day job now and I hope I never have to retire. I see it less as a career as a way of life.

Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?

No. It’s as good as I can make it now. My goal is to take what I learned and apply it in the next one.

In the beginning it was easy to see – and give words to – what I learned so I could actually focus on applying what I learned. Character growth, POV, settings, dialog. Once I had ten titles out it was a lot harder to identify what “better” meant. Now? I only go by “does this story feel right?” and “Okay, so, this next one needs more … cowbell or something.”

Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?

Not so much learned as re-learned. I learned to trust my process. I learned to trust the characters. I learned that having a lot of tools in your tool box doesn’t obligate you to use them all when the simple one is often just as effective.

Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?

Depends on the series.
Ishmael Wang – I wanted Rupert Grint when both of them were younger.
Tanyth Fairport – Helen Mirren.

Fiona: Any advice for other writers?

Write the story you want to read but can’t find. Remember that writing is neither a sprint nor a marathon. There’s no tape to break or winner’s trophy. There is only the one finish line we all face.

I may not be able to leave much, but I’m going to leave as many stories as I can when I go.

Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?

A line I got from Alton Brown: “Your patience will be rewarded.”

Fiona: What book are you reading now?

A sample of Margaret McGaffey Fisk’s Shafter. It’s showing a lot of promise early in and I’ll probably buy it when I get to the link at the end.

Note: I only read self published works with the exception of a few non-fiction, reference titles. … it’s complicated.

 Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?

No. It was likely one of the Little Golden Books. I started reading when I was three.

Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?

It’s hard to predict. It’s almost impossible not to laugh along with a baby. This morning I laughed at a massive flock of Canada Geese wheeling in the sky over my head.

Cry? My father’s funeral. I’m trying to think of other things, things more recent, and I’m coming up – pardon the expression – dry.

Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?


It’s tough. I’ve met a lot of people already – many of them names that I grew up with. Meeting them is nice but unsatisfying. I got introduced to John Scalzi at the Nebulas last spring and met Lee Modesitt at WorldCon. There’s not much you can get from a meeting like that. A “Hi, so nice to meet you” while trying to refrain from an “OMG, you’re ..” moment.

There are a lot of people I’d like to share a meal with, have a drink with. Alan M. Steele because I recorded one of his stories and it won a Hugo. Ray Bradbury because … Ray Bradbury! Zora Neale Hurston because there’s a woman who knows how to tell a story about people … plus Voodoo. Pretty much anybody really because everybody has a story to tell. Some of them aren’t names you’d know or people you might pick out of a crowd. You only need to listen.

If I could take one person on a cross-country road trip, it might be Leonard Cohen or maybe Bill Murray and we’d talk about what it means to be adult males in the current toxic soup of masculinity. Or Joni Mitchell and we’d listen to Tuareg folk rock all the way from Los Angeles to Baltimore.

I don’t know. It’s a tough question.

Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?

Video games. I played Eve Online for a long time and got some of my characters from there. These days I’m playing Skyrim. I’m on sabbatical from multiplayer games.

I like cooking and reading. I read a lot and I justify the time by saying “Shut up. It’s part of my job.” (Before I became a full time novelist, I used to just say “Shut up.” I wasn’t as nice a person then.)

 Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?

I don’t watch much. It’s too easy to lose my writing time and it’s too easy to spot the beats.

 Fiona: Favorite foods, colors,  music?

I’m a sucker for a good burrito, navy blue or forest green, almost anything that has a good beat and a melody.

 Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?

Die.
Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?

I’d go to the ocean and stare at the sea. 

 Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?

He was fun while he lasted.
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?


http://nathanlowell.com

I only post once a month to the blog because the one thing a reader wants is the next book. That three times a week thing never did any thing for me when I did it back in the early days and once a month is about as long as I can go before somebody asks “When’s the next book coming out?”

There’s a fan group on Facebook where I’m a member and we have fun. Mostly it’s fans talking with fans and I stop by almost every day to play with the crew.  ( https://www.facebook.com/groups/GoldenAgeoftheSolarClipper/ )

I do have a (somewhat) daily podcast where I talk about whatever I’m thinking about on my morning walk. (http://nathanlowell.com/tommw)

Reminds me, I need to post this morning’s talk – episode Day 1741.

https://www.amazon.com/Nathan-Lowell/e/B003D54RY4

 

Here is my interview with Sandra J. Jackson

Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.

 

Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?

Hello, my name is Sandra J. Jackson, and I turned 50 earlier this year.

Fiona: Where are you from?

I was born in Montreal, Quebec Canada and lived on the South Shore until I was 16 when I moved to the Ottawa area. I now live in a rural community in the 1000 islands region in Eastern Ontario.

Fiona: A little about your self (ie,  your education, family life, etc.).

I grew up with two older brothers and a younger sister. When I was 16 my parents, sister and I (brothers had moved out by then) moved to Ottawa. I studied Graphic Design in college but did little work in the field as computer graphics suddenly became the way-to-go shortly after I earned my diploma. I married my husband a year after college graduation and we have raised two children. I now work as a finance assistant and write in my spare time.

Fiona: Tell us your latest news.

I wish my latest news was something exciting. Had this been August I would tell you I just won my first book award. But that is old news, and so I guess the latest news I have with regards to writing is that I have begun edits on the third book of The Escape Series trilogy. The second book is with a creative editor, and I expect both books to be released next year.

Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?

I started writing in 2005, and it began with a poem I’d written about my niece who had passed away. I gave it to her parents and they asked me to readit at her funeral (not an easy task). About a month later I had an idea for a story and the ideas kept coming. Eventually, I had eight different stories started and all in various stages of completion from a few paragraphs to several chapters. At some point I decided that I needed to pick one and finish it. I ended up with a ninth idea and that became my first completed novel.

Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?

I didn’t consider myself a writer, at least publicly, until my first book was published.

Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?

I’ve always been fascinated with people who believe they have lived another life and with the belief of soulmates. These two notions inspired me to write Promised Soul.

Fiona: How did you come up with the title?

My titles are derived from the last lines of the book. Promised Soul came from the concept of a soul being promised to another in eternal love.

Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?

I’m not sure if this is a specific writing style but I do like to include elements in my stories that make my readers feel like they are a part of the story. I also like to make my readers think and wonder ‘what if.’

So far I haven’t found anything challenging with regards to the genres I write or my style.

Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

There are always elements in my books that are real based either on my personal experiences or someone else’s. As a writer though my stories are fictional I have to draw from fact to make the characters believable.

Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?

While I have travelled to some of the places I have mentioned in my writing there are other places I have not. However, I do extensive research using tools like Google Street View and enlisting the help of people who live in the places I am writing about.

If I have travelled to the location the writing about it occurs afterward. If I am writing about a place I have never been to before the research occurs usually during the process.

Fiona: Who designed the covers?

Both of my books were previously published by another publisher. With my first publisher a graphic artist working with the publisher designed the cover of my first book, and I designed the cover of the second. A designer with my current publisher designed the covers of both the second editions of my books.

Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

I suppose if there are messages in my novels it is to not give up hope.

Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?  Who is your favorite writer, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?

I have read a lot of works in the last few years by a number of new authors. Some have been great, and I will, and have, continued reading works from them, others not so much. One of my favourite authors is Diana Gabaldon. I enjoy the stories she writes and the research she does to ensure that her fictional stories have a realistic side to them.

Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.

I’m not sure if there was anyone outside my family I spoke to about writing, certainly not one entity. However, I can say that since I have become published, some of my biggest supporters have come from members of my community as well as many other authors.

Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?

It would be great, a dream, if it could be a career, but at the moment it is not, perhaps someday.

Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?

No, I don’t think so.

Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?

Yes, that writing a trilogy is difficult and requires a lot of note taking.

Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?

That’s a good question and one I have thought about. I’m not really sure but she would have to pass for 27 years old with honey blond hair and green eyes, Kirsten Prout, Amanda Seyfried, or Jennifer Lawrence (with coloured contacts) types.

Fiona: Any advice for other writers?

My advice to authors starting out would be to build your author platform before you become published. Start a blog, a website, and grow interest in your talent. Though I did not do these things myself (I had no idea) I did start posting chapters of my book on Wattpad where I received a lot of great feedback before I approached a publisher.

Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?

Thank you! Your support and interest in my books is very much appreciated as well as your reviews.

Fiona: What book are you reading now?

Right now I am reading The Long Gray Goodbye by Bobby Underwood

Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?

Probably the first chapter books I read would have been the Nancy Drew series. I absolutely loved those books and read many of them. Then I think I moved on to books written by Judy Blume.

 Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?

I tend to laugh at funny things that have actually happened to people. Candid camera shows, prank shows make me laugh. One of the funniest television shows I’ve watched was Mrs. Brown’s Boys.

I’m a sap and can cry at the slightest thing I find touching. There are even songs that make me teary eyed.

Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?

I suppose there are a few celebrities I would like to meet such as Benedict Cumberbatch, or several cast members from the Outlander series. I would of course love to meet Diana Gabaldon or J.K. Rowling.

Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?

Aside from reading, I enjoy painting though it has been a while since I have painted anything. I also make bookmarks, a new endeavour of mine. I enjoy photography, kayaking, and hiking.

Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?

My film and TV tastes, much like my reading and writing, are very eclectic. I like anything from adventure to comedy, romance to thriller, science fiction to fantasy.

Fiona: Favorite foods, colors,  music?

I like a lot of different foods but pasta dishes would have to be my favourite. Red is my favourite colour and as for music it varies. I like some pop, rock, country and classical.

Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?

I would probably just pick up with painting again and do more photography. I’m creative and have tried a lot of different crafts so I am sure I would find another interest.

Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?

With my family, my husband and children are my world.

Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?

I always strived to be a better person and if I failed, I kept trying.

Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?

My website is www.sandrajjackson.com

I have a Facebook page where you can sign up for my quarterly newsletter www.facebook.com/sandrajjackson.author.

I also have a blog on WordPresshttps://sandrajjackson.wordpress.com/

Some more of my links:

Email: sjjacksonauthor@gmail.com

Twitter: https://twitter.com/sjjacksonauthor

Amazon: http://author.to/SandraJJackson

https://www.amazon.com/Sandra-J.-Jackson

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Sandra-J.-Jackson/e/B00UZJO5DY/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1

Book Links:

 

http://mybook.to/PromisedSoulSJ

 

http://mybook.to/PlayingRain

Thank you, Fiona, for this interview opportunity.

Here is my interview with Andrew Bell

Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.

 

Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?

My name is Andrew Bell and I’m 44 years young.

Fiona: Where are you from?

Hartlepool

Fiona: A little about your self (ie,  your education, family life, etc.).

I grew up in a rather large foster home that, at the time, comprises four brothers and two sisters. We all keep in touch although, being busy, it’s quite difficult sometimes.

After studying advanced English and ancient Greek and Roman Mythology I started reading Homer and Virgil. And my love of fiction was born.

Fiona: Tell us your latest news.

Having been published in over forty of J Ellington Ashton Publishers’ Horror Anthologies, they offered me the opportunity to join their editing team for England.

Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?

In 1991 I started writing whilst studying at college. I found it cathartic.

Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?

When I’d wake up in the early hours and scribble ideas in a notebook, afraid I would lose them if I didn’t. I was just 16 years old.

Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?

Sitting in the library, studying, I was surrounded by immortals. So, I penned a book. Macabre as my genre I knew that writers live forever. Or Escape Artists, as I like to call them.

 Fiona: How did you come up with the title?

Unguarded Instinct is named after an old song from a heavy metal group called Slayer. It seemed to fit with the concept of a father’s love for his children and what sacrifices he would make to avenge them.

Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?

As regards to style I deeply admire Truman Capote’s In Cold Blood. It’s a mode I try to recreate. The story is quite pedestrian as we get accustomed to characters etc, then suddenly we are accosted by one page of information that totally changes our course, before dragging us back to the pedestrian chapters once more. It’s the little surprises in life that draws our attention.

Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

I wouldn’t say it was realistic, and as for personal experience, fatherhood is quite a common theme in my stories. I fathered three children, all stillborn. So, it’s a very important subject to me.

Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?

Not at all. It’s all in my own head.

Fiona: Who designed the covers?

I illustrated Unguarded Instinct, but the others were left to an artist.

Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Despite self-doubt never underestimate your inner strength. Ignore the negative side to your nature, those little feeble whispers. Make a stand; You don’t know how strong you are until you must be.

Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?  Who is your favorite writer, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?

I work with some very talented writers and they’re great friends, but as favourites I would have to say Clive Barker, Stephen King, and Shaun Hutson. I find their worlds engaging.

Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.

Denise Sparrowhawk, local librarian. She supports budding authors.

Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?

It’s not a job because the brain can never switch off. When it does, and I regard it as such, then I’ll stop.

Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?

Take it more seriously.

Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?

There is an undercurrent of loss and the strength needed to pick yourself back up. It’s not easy.

 Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?

Ryan Reynalds

Fiona: Any advice for other writers?

NEVER EVER listen to the toxic people that want you to fail in the pursuit of attaining what makes you happy. Writing is cathartic as well as fun; it consumes, covers wounds so you can heal. Plus…writers never die, they live in libraries.

Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?

A lot of writers don’t write. They talk the talk. Please don’t be one of them.

 Fiona: What book are you reading now?

Dracul by Dacre Stoker.

 Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?

Deadly Friend…but the author’s name escapes me.

 Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?

Stand-up comedy

 Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?

Clive Barker. He inspired me to not care what others think about the imagination. You are your limit.

 Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?

Heavy metal music festivals, cinema, gym

 Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?

I try to watch as little as possible. God’s Eye sucks the life out of you.

 Fiona: Favorite foods, colors,  music?

Chicken, fish, salads, pasta…I like blue and black, and I enjoy extreme music.

 Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?

Read. Get involved in the writing process in some way. Maybe teaching.

 Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?

With family.

 Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?

I didn’t do a bad job!

 Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?

Not at present as I have works in progress. But, as they say, watch this space.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Andrew-Bell/e/B007PXXYK8/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1

Here is my interview with Eichin Chang-Lim

Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.

 

Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name.

My name is Eichin Chang-Lim. This is how you say my name, pointing your right index finger to your eye, and then to your chin. Eye-Chin. That’s it!

Fiona: Where are you from?

I am from Taiwan. I came to this country to pursue my graduate studies with a student visa years ago.

Fiona: A little about yourself (e.g.,  your education, family life, etc.).

After I received my master’s degree in microbiology, I further advanced my education and obtained my doctorate degree in optometry. I’ve been an optometrist for decades and loved being in the eye care profession. I have a husband, two children, and one dog. (We used to have two poodle mixes, Shorty and Gabby; Shorty just passed recently right after his 19th birthday. I cried for a few nights.)

Fiona: Tell us your latest news.

My 4th book, The LoveLock, was released a few months ago. Oh, three out of four books of mine received the 2018 Readers’ Favorite Book Awards. I am humbled and grateful.

Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?

It’s an interesting journey, I would say.

I wanted to be a writer when I was in elementary school. I even submitted several short stories and essays to youth magazines, and they were accepted and published. Of course, they were written in Chinese back home. In junior high, I submitted some more articles and stories; they were ruthlessly rejected. My confidence shattered; I started to doubt my writing ability. At the same time, I found interests in other areas of study. So the idea of being a writer faded, and I gradually evolved my studies in science and healthcare.

After years as an optometrist, I realized that every person is a unique individual and every soul is precious. I know this sounds clichéd. However, that’s my conviction. I really appreciate that my patients allow me to look into their eyes, “the windows to the soul.” (Again, a cliché!) I believe that there are stories in every single person. Listening to my patients fuels the inspiration for my stories.

The urge to tell stories prompted me to become an author eight years ago. My novels are a collection of stories I have heard and about people I have met. Of course, I inject them with personal experience and research for certain plots to make the story real.

Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?

 Romance and inspirational are my niche genera. I write in an easy-to-read style, and the main characters are everyday people to whom the readers can relate one way or another. There are scenes that readers can even resonate with.

Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel before or during the process?

I do not specifically travel for the scenes in the stories. However, I do incorporate some of my travelling experiences into the setup. I would say that research online and talk to people in particular areas, and personal encounters in real life are the primary basis of my stories.

Fiona: Who designed the covers?

The Book Khaleesi designed all of my books. I am pleased with their work.

Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

My genres are romance and inspiration.

This is my motto: Life can flip in the blink of an eye. Nevertheless, love and passion find a way to make it right.

In the journey of our lives, we may find ourselves travelling through dark, stormy nights. We may slip or fall a few times while attempting to steady our steps on the muddy road. It’s OK to cry when it feels like the gloomy blackness lasts forever. Do not despair, my friends. There is purpose in every person’s precious life. Even though it’s hard to see it in the midst of turmoil, there is hope and love around us.  Have faith!

Fiona:  Who is your favorite writer, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?

I read across various genres, and my favorite authors shift from time to time. If I had to pick one right at this very moment, I would say Kazuo Ishiguro. Many of his books depict the irony of humanity; within a deep sense of melancholy, he infuses a good dose of inspiration.

Recently, I have found many talented indie authors who have produced great work, and I am fond of a few of them.  I find the authors’ forward-moving spirits to share their inner souls and profound thoughts admirable. Telling stories via words takes courage and determination.

Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?

The reviews on THE LOVELOCK are very controversial. This book is grittier and more involving than my other three books. Readers either love it or hate it. This book revolves around depression and mental illness. Even though it is in the romance and inspirational genre, there are many dark moments that will be difficult for readers to accept or digest. Also, some people find it to be confusing and question my view on sexuality. The main character, Violet, becomes close friends with the strip club bouncer, who is gay. I feel obligated to explain that particular plot detail to my readers.

First of all, I am a Christian and straight. I have no particular political or religious agenda. This inclusion is just an honest reflection of my real life. I have a few good friends and co-workers who have different stands and preferences in terms of sexuality. It has never occurred to me that these differences could cause any conflicts in my friendships or work relationships with them. Wouldn’t it be nice if all of society could tear down all the unnecessary walls and build genuine friendships amongst one and other?

So, regarding your question about whether or not I would change anything about THE LOVELOCK, I would say NO as of this moment.

Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?

Yes, I have a further understanding of depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms. (Personally, I had a couple mild episodes of depression in the past.) I read much about PTSD before initiating this book project. I also consulted with my cousin, who is a clinical psychiatrist, about PTSD. Mental illness is a silent yet devastating condition. It hurts immensely, yet the wound is invisible. The pain is real; however, it’s indescribable verbally most of the time.

Besides the mental illness, I also have a deeper understanding of a stripper’s life. I became much less judgmental of that profession. No one stripper’s story is identical; however, every soul is precious, regardless.

Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?

Since THE LOVELOCK has a similar storyline as the Silver Linings Playbook, it’s logical to assume that Jennifer Lawrence is an ideal lead to play the role of Violet Swanson.

Fiona: What book are you reading now?

Currently, I am reading A Daughter of the Samurai by Etsu Inagaki Sugimoto. The author tells the story of cultural contrast between East and West in the late 19th and early 20th century. The writing prose is poetic and insightful.

Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?

I enjoy a simple workout. However, I do all of my workouts at home because of the time restraint. I follow the dance aerobics DVD for one hour and weight-lifting (15 lbs) five days a week.

Recently, I received an AA degree in graphic design from Full Sail University. I pursued it because making beautiful images fascinates me.

Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?

I enjoy watching light-hearted, clean comedies.

Fiona: Favorite  music?

I listen to all the genera of music. However, I listen to classical music and opera when I am alone, late in the night, or doing creative activities, like writing or designing. The ones from classical and romantic eras particularly intrigue me.

Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?

I would be a photographer and doing graphic design with photo-composition for fun.

Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events, and special offers?

My website is www.EichinChangLim.com

Connect with Me: Twitter | Facebook  | Amazon | Google+ | Goodreads

Thank you for having me. It has been a pleasure.

 

Here is my interview with Lucy Winton

Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.

Thank you! It’s nice to be here.

 

Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?

You can call me Lucy Winton. It’s not my actual name, but it’s the name my books are going to be published under. I’m in my late twenties.

Fiona: Where are you from?

I live in a seaside town, and it’s absolutely beautiful.

Fiona: A little about yourself (ie, your education, family life, etc.).

My family’s always been a big part of my life.I’ve got two degrees. I’ve always loved being by the sea, but I also love the countryside. My favourite seasons are spring and autumn.

Fiona: Tell us your latest news.

I discovered a Scottish folk band on YouTube. It’s called Skipinnish, and they’re amazing.

Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?

I first began writing when I was five. Someone gave me a little notepad with lines and a space for pictures as well, and that was how it started.

Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?

I think it was when my writing became serious as opposed to a hobby.

Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?

What if wolves weren’t extinct in Scotland?

Fiona: How did you come up with the title?

It was originally titled ‘Pink Rose’, but I changed it to ‘Wild Rose’ because it seemed to suit Milly, the main character, more.

Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?

Writing teenagers realistically can be very challenging! There have been times when I’ve tried to follow someone else’s style, but it didn’t work. I had to write as myself, not as anyone else.

Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

I have tried to keep a few things realistic in the book. In fact, I worried things were a bit too realistic in some cases! One character was inspired by a real person, but he’s been dead for a long time. Let’s just say she took being separated from the love of her life a lot better than he did.

Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?

No. I just used Google images and Pinterest!

Fiona: Who designed the covers?

I did – with a little help from the technological genius in the family (a.k.a. my mother).

Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Not an intentional one.

Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?  Who is your favorite writer, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?

Oh, you can’t ask me who my favourite writer is! That’s not fair!

Recently, I discovered KM Weiland and Alydia Rackham. KM Weiland has written several books, and her ‘Structuring Your Novel’ workbook has been a major source of help in my own writing. Alydia Rackham is a self-published author, and her fairy-tale retellings are imaginative and amazing.

Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.

God. Couldn’t have done any of this without Him.

Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?

Yes. Whether or not it’s going to be my career remains to be seen.

Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?

Maybe the names of some of the characters.

Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?

I learned my writing works best when there’s an outline.

Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?

That’s a good question! It would have to be someone with blonde hair and an air of innocence about them. The kind of girl artists would paint surrounded by flowers.

Fiona: Any advice for other writers?

Go with the style that works best for you. If you’re a pantser, that’s fine. If you’re an outliner, that’s great too. When you find out which one you are, stick with it.

Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?

I really hope you enjoy the series!

Fiona: What book are you reading now?

The Land of Good Dreams, by T.S. Thompson.

Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?

I wish I could! It was probably a Thomas the Tank Engine book, or a Meg and Mog, or a children’s Bible, or a Beatrix Potter.

Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?

A lot of things make me cry. The Grey Havens scene from Lord of the Rings, a beautiful piece of music. As for what makes me laugh…I don’t know about anything specific. A lot of things make me laugh.

Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?

I’ve spoken to my writing coaches online, but I’ve never met them face to face. I think that would be interesting.

Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?

Apart from writing? Reading!

Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?

That’s a tough one. I don’t watch as much TV as I used to, but I enjoy The Great British Bake Off, Hunted and Doctor Who.

Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?

I like all shades of purple and blue, and I’m gaining a new appreciation for pink! I like all kinds of music, but my favourite types are folk and country. They’ve been a huge inspiration for the series!

Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?

I honestly can’t imagine that.

Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?

Talking to my family and telling them that I love them. I would also donate a lot of money to charity. I would spend a lot of time praying and preparing myself for what comes next.

Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?

I don’t know. I hope when the time comes, it’s something nice.

Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?

Absolutely. You can find me at https://www.lucywinton-therosesseries.com/

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Lucy-Winton/e/B07L5W6L75/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

https://www.amazon.com/Lucy-Winton/e/B07L5W6L75/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

Here is my interview with John Gregory Hancock

Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.

 

Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?

== I write under my real full name, John Gregory Hancock. I just turned an impossibly old age… at least to my way of thinking. Could I really be 60? Nah, can’t be. I must be dreaming. Not a good dream anyways.

Fiona: Where are you from?

== Missouri but I live in Southwest Ohio now.

Fiona: A little about your self (ie,  your education, family life, etc.).

== I am a graphic designer that has won many design awards and worked for many of the largest newspapers in the country. I have a wonderful wife of 30 years and son in college. I was once written into a video game and I’ve accidentally met some famous people.

Fiona: Tell us your latest news.

== I’ve just released a new short story ebook called Sharing Dunwoodies. It is about a smile made a person, Bill Fastensmith, who through the intersection of his life and those of his friends and some amazing things called Dunwoodies, his life is changed or at least enhanced. I would go more into but it’s a short story for Pete’s sake so there is very little you CAN say without spoiling.

Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?

== I’ve been writing ever since a young boy but I never put it all together and published until 5 years ago. Why do I write? Because there are stories inside of me that I really want to share. I also enjoy the act of writing and reworking stories. It comes from laying in bed, with a flashlight under the covers reading my favorite science fiction tales from people like Asimov and Sturgeon and Bester.

Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?

== When I self published my first book, an anthology called A Plague of Dreams in 2013.

Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?

== Dreams. I often dream in complete plots and remember the details  when I wake up. My mind puts the threads together into a story. Sometimes only a snippet or a feeling survives but I craft it lovingly into the tale where it fits. A Plague of Dreams was a book I put together because I wanted to see if I COULD self publish. It was an experiment, a mechanical challenge. I collected some of my existing drafts of short stories and wrote some new ones.

Fiona: How did you come up with the title?

== The title of the book, A Plague of Dreams, is kind of summed up by the introduction:

These stories, these lies, these Dreamwood Tales, are dipped in the heady ink of my fevered dreams.

They travel unique and varied paths to arrive at your shuttered door. I entreat you to undo the latch and let them in to lie upon your hearth.

They will not bite.

Except for the ones that do.

Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?

== I just let the characters tell me what they want to say. If there is anything about my style, it would be that instead of taking 27 words to say something I hone it down until it takes only 9. I don’t pad. I just carefully craft only the words I need. I also really like my characters, as people (when they are people), so they come out layered, with plausible motivations. As far as challenging, I love challenges. As an example, one short story in Splintered Dreams, The Interpreter, was a challenge I made myself to see if I could write a story that was all dialogue and make it work. I’m proud of how it turned out.
I’m always finding ways to write that are fresh to me, or stories that interest me. Because if I find it interesting, hopefully the readers will.

Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

== Let’s answer this for Sharing Dunwoodies. I think a lot of my characters are some aspect of me, but in Dunwoodies, I WISH Bill Fastensmith was an aspect of me because I admire him. He’s a smile made a person, and he does the right thing because he’s inherently good. Since I wrote it, I ask myself, “What would Fastensmith do?” and try to do the right thing.

But in general, I think the fun of writing is putting yourself into shoes that are not exactly like your own.

Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?

== I travel in my head, and my heart. If I have to research a particular thing, I can do that online. I’d love to travel but I cannot afford it and don’t have the time. But that’s where imagination comes in.

Fiona: Who designed the covers?

== Me. I am a graphic designer in my 9 to 5. So I design all my covers, and most of my books have interior illustrations that fit the character of the tale. My book The Mortuary Arts has over 25 interior illustrations. I also format and upload my books, so I’m a one stop factory. That way I can’t blame anyone but myself, lol.

Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

== A lot of my books have a message. ROOF has a message, but its a kind of specific one that is revealed as you read it. Dying at the Reflecting Pool has a very specific political message — its a near future dystopia where US health care has all but disappeared except for the incredibly rich.
But generally, if there was a common message to many of my stories its that humans are valuable. Even my horror tales gain their energy from worthwhile and interesting characters.

Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?  Who is your favorite writer, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?

== I really hate this question, because I’m such a fan of reading and writers. I loathe narrowing it down. So as long as you understand that I’m only offering examples, instead of awarding blue ribbons, I’ll answer. As far as famous writers, I greatly admire Kurt Vonnegut, Neil Gaiman, George RR Martin, and Stephen King. What I admire about their writing is how easy it is to immerse myself into their worlds. The words they use disappear, become ephemeral and the story just comes through.

I also happen to be friends with many independent authors, and if I mention only a few, it leaves other worthy authors out. Since I just mentioned one handful of them in another interview, I’ll pick a different group: Carol Davis, Susan Kay Quinn, P.K. Tyler, Ted Cross, and Will Swardstrom. What I’m struck by, in fact gobsmacked, is how extremely talented my writer friends are. I read their stuff and occasionally sit back and think that I’m both inspired and intimidated by their talents. And that’s a good place to be, as a writer, believe it or not.

Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.

== This will be very odd, but two people were instrumental in allowing me to write my first book. One was the very established author Zoe Sharp who spent time reading it and offering suggestions. The other was the actress Kristen Johnston(of Third Rock from the Sun). The way I knew both of these amazing women was through twitter, and my hobby I had at one time of drawing celebrities. You can see those drawings at artsprocket.com. Kristen even helped design the first edition cover and they both gave great reviews of the book. Kind of crazy, I know.

Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?

== I would love that. But I think until I’m retired from my day job I’m not going to have the time to write all the fantastic stories I have in me. So, until then I’ll just write as much as I can and keep trying to find my audience. I’m blessed that nearly everyone who does get a chance to read my stuff generally enjoys the work I’ve put into them.

Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?

== No. Every story has its own life, and deserves to be what it intended itself to be. Sharing Dunwoodies is a life affirming story and I think it will be encouraging to anyone who reads it.

Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?

== People are valuable. And witty, and kind and generous.And so very much worthwhile.

Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?

== Tom Hanks, I think. Yeah, he’d be the best Bill Fastensmith I could ever dream of.

Fiona: Any advice for other writers?

== Do your own thing, use your own voice, tell your own tales. Listen to advice but don’t let others rule you.

 Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?

== Let’s have this adventure together. I have so many great stories to tell you. If you would be so generous as to let me share them with you, I promise to do my best to tell the stories they way they demand to be told. My characters deserve that.

Fiona: What book are you reading now?

== I just got done reading The Immortality Game by Ted Cross. It was very intriguing and a world that I wanted to live near if not in. lol.

Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?

== hmmm… Fun with Dick and Jane?that’s the reader they gave us as kids. But I bet that’s not what you want at all. Ok, the first book I read that really had an impact on me as a young child was 20,000 Leagues under the Sea by Jules Verne. I loved the steampunk nature of the science fiction… of course, “steampunk” wasn’t even a term then. I read it probably when I was 8 or 9, back in the mid 1960’s.

Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?

== I love a good pun, and they make you both laugh and cry. ha.

Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?

== Clive Barker. His work is fantastic. Imajica is one of the best books ever written.

Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?

== Do video games count? Because I don’t do much else.

Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?

== Travellers is an excellent show on Netflix. I loved Stargate Universe, Westworld on HBO, as well as Game of Thrones. Mr. Robot, The Marvel Universe (all movies), It’s about Time (movie), and I could go on and on.

Fiona: Favorite foods, colors,  music?

== I recently had to make drastic changes to my diet. I can no longer eat carbs, like breads or pastas. Luckily I can still eat cashews. I love cashews. I could eat them forever. Before I had to change my diet, cheesecake was my weakness. Colors? Blue is my favorite but being an artist, a full palette is the key to happiness. Musical taste is subjective but I’m eclectic in my choices in music; Jazz, Classical, Rock, Blues, etc.

Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?

== I’d still dream. I’d still live. I’d still love.

Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?

== I’ve actually had to contemplate this, as a cancer survivor. At more than one point in my life, my survival was not guaranteed. It simplifies things, it reduces things to the most essential. I would spend time with those I love. Nothing else matters.

Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?

== He tried to be kind, he tried to let others know they matter. To the extent that he succeeded, he was a success.

Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?

== http://johngregoryhancock.com/  is my author website but I desperately need to update it. Readers will have better luck going to my Amazon Author page.

https://www.amazon.com/John-Gregory-Hancock/e/B00B8ECQMW

Here is my interview with T.N. Lowe

Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.

 

Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?

Everyone knows me by my pen name T.N. Lowe, but my first name is Tonya. As of November, I am 35 years old.

Fiona: Where are you from?

My dad was active duty military,so I don’t have a “home” per se.  I was born in the Netherlands, grew up in Missouri, lived in Italy, Wyoming, and Colorado.Currently, I live in Texas.

Fiona: A little about your self(ie,  your education, family life, etc.).

I live in Bedford, Texas with my husband and two dogs, Angel and Patches. I have an Associate’s degree in Medical Assisting and X-Ray Technology and a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology.

Fiona: Tell us your latest news.

I’m proud to announce the second of the Secret and Lies series.I will release ‘Secret Revenge’on January 7th.

Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?

I started writing in elementary school. The school I went to hosted a writing contest for all grades. While I never won,the writing bug bit meand I loved it.

Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?

I still have a difficult time thinking of myself as a writer, but it sank in that I am a writer when I published my second book. It is the one I am the proudest of,and it’s my favoriteso far.

Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?

I was inspired to write my first book because I wasn’t happy in my job and was considering going back to school for a Master degree. One night I was talking to my husband,and he Googled what to do with a degree in psychology, and writing was one options.

I remembered how much joy I got out of writing as a kid and thought why not? I talked to my mom,and her exact words were, “You read enough, why not?” So I wrote Saving Ginny and fell in love with writing again.

Fiona: How did you come up with the title?

Titles are something I struggle with.. I typically have a title picked out before I start writing the story. As I write, I change the title about ten times before I find the perfect title that will draw readers in and hintwhat the book is about.

Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?

I don’t have a specific writing style. Typically when I write, I start with an outline,butin the story’s middle, I get a brilliant idea and change the whole story.

The challenge of writing suspense/thrillers is leaving clues for the reader to guess who the killer/murder or badguy is without giving too much away.

Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?

My books are one hundred percent fiction. I base some of the towns, stores, and restaurantson places I’ve been. The charactersreflect people I’ve seen while shopping or at the gym.

Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?

No, I don’t have to travel. I draw from past travels or if it is an area I’m not familiar with I’m able to use the internet or friends to get more information.

Fiona: Who designed the covers?

My covers are designed by Pro_ebookcovers. I found the company on Fiverr and love the way she can turn my ideas into beautiful book covers.

Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

I don’t intentionally write a message into my novels. Iwould likemy readers to look twice because people are not always who they are on the outside.

Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?  Who is your favoritewriter, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?

Every time I go looking for a new book to read on Amazon I find an author that is new to me.  The latest one is Sariah Wilson and The Royals of Monterraseries.

I don’t have a favoriteauthor -there are too many good ones to pick just one. Some of myfavoritesare: James Patterson, Nora Roberts, J.S. Scott,and Kennedy Fox to name a few.

Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.

When I started writing for publication, my family and friends were my only supports. Even today they are still my largest support group.

Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?

I look at my writing as a hobby rather than a career. A career makes it feelI have to sell books to make a living rather than something I love.

Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?

If I had to do it all over again, I would add more interactions between the two main characters and the people in the town. Iwould also add more misdirection.

Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?

While writing Secret Revenge, I learned so much. I based the bookin Bar Harbor, Maine. A state I’ve never stepped foot in so I took to the internet to learn as much as I could about the state and city. I hope the residents of Maine and Bar Harbor will forgive me if I didn’t do their state/city justice. Then there was tedious research about corporations vs. companies and the presidential candidate process.

Fiona: If your book was madeinto a film, who would you like to play the lead?

If A Secret To Kill For was made into a movie, I would like to see Emma Stone play Erin and Theo James as Landon.

Fiona: Any advice for other writers?

My best advice for other writers is to write for yourself and to have fun with your writing. Doing something you love should never feel like work.

Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?

I want to thank every one of my readers. Thank you for believing in me. Thank you for loving my characters as much as I do.

Fiona: What book are you reading now?

I am currently rereading J.S. Scott’s The Billionaire’s Obsession Series: Mine for Tonight, Mine Forever and Mine Completely. I’m almost embarrassed to say I’ve read it about a hundred times, the characters and their love story gets me every time.

Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?

I don’t remember the first book I read,but I’m sure it was a Dr.Seuss.My parentsused to read his books to me and my brother every night when we were little.

Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?

I’m probably one of the easiest people to make laugh. A cheesyjoke, goofyface, or a witty come back will always make me laugh.

I don’t cry often, but a story of self-sacrifice, finding true love, or homecoming will make me misty-eyed.

Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?

I would love to meet Wilhelm and Jacob Grimm. Like most people I grew up watching Disney movies and fell in love with Sleeping Beauty, Cinderella, andRapunzel. When I was older, I read the original stories by The Brothers Grimm and loved the stories even more. I would like to meet the creators of my favorite stories.

Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?

When I’m not working or writing I enjoy reading, spending time with my family, travel, cook or bake, and play with my dogs.

Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?

I enjoy watching action/adventure, comedies, mysteries,and romantic comedies. Right now my must-watch TV shows are Lethal Weapon, NCIS,and The Big Bang Theory.   My must watch every time they are on TV are The Mummy (1999), Leap Year, Hunger Games and Harry Potter.

Fiona: Favorite foods, colors,  music?

My favoritefood used to be pizza, but six years ago I was diagnosed with gluten intolerance so now my favoritefood is gluten-freeshortbread cookies. My favoritecoloris a deep almost navy blue. My favoritemusic is anything with a beat,though I listen to more country and alternative rock than other genres.

Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?

My day job is in public health. If I stop writing I would still work in public health or the health care field.

Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?

 If I only had 24 hours, I would want to spend my time with my family.

Fiona: What do you want to be writtenon your head stone?

She came, she saw, she lived.

Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?

Website: https://www.tnlowe1.com/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/tn.lowe

Twitter: https://twitter.com/tn_lowe

Amazon Authors page  https://www.amazon.com/T.N.-Lowe/e/B079WLQJDL/ref=dp_byline_cont_ebooks_1

Secrets can ruin lives, break bonds, and destroy families.
Some secrets are so important they are worth killing for.
Erin had everything she ever wanted, her dream job as a FBI agent like her father and grandfather, assisting the lead agent in a head line catching serial murder case, and a boyfriend who loves her.
Until she lost everything. The boyfriend, the journalist who she thought loves her, lied on a story causing Erin to lose everything she worked for.
After rebuilding her life in a quaint mountain town in Colorado, Erin learns her family has a dark secret she was never supposed to learn.
The Messenger?
The serial murderer she was hunting.

https://www.amazon.com/Secret-Kill-Lies-Book-ebook/dp/B07DVGFQJY/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1543783548&sr=8-2-fkmr0&keywords=Secret+Remorse+T.N.+Lowe

Secret Remorse: Coming January 7, 2019

 

How well do you know the people in your life? Is everyone as they appear or do they live secret lives?

Lena Miller is about to find out no one in her life is as they appear. Lena was returning to life as she knew it after grieving the loss of her mother. She has a great job at a local resort that she loves most of the time and friends who love and treat her like family. That all changes when the resort is sold and a familiar stranger enters her life; changing everything she ever thought she knew about herself, her family, and her friends.

https://www.amazon.com/Secret-Revenge-Lies-Book-Two-ebook/dp/B07KSG5S6W/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1543783531&sr=8-1-fkmr0&keywords=Secret+Remorse+T.N.+Lowe

 

Here is my interview with Sian MacArthur

Hello and welcome to my blog, Author Interviews. My name is Fiona Mcvie.

 

Let’s get you introduced to everyone, shall we? Tell us your name. What is your age?

Hi Fiona! My name is Sian MacArthur, and I’m 40 years old.

Fiona: Where are you from?

Originally I’m from London, but I relocated to the Kent coast in the UK with my children about 5 years ago.

Fiona: A little about your self (ie,  your education, family life, etc.).

Well, I’m mother to two teenage boys, so it’s fair to say that they keep me busy most of the time! I work part-time as an admin assistant, which I love as it gives me plenty of time to focus on my writing, and I dabble in copy-writing every now and again when the opportunity presents itself! I studied English and American literature for my degree, and followed this up with a Masters in Popular fiction – which I thoroughly enjoyed!

Fiona: Tell us your latest news.

I am currently working on an article on modern Gothic that is intended for inclusion in an online Gothic encyclopedia. My article will explore the ways in which Mo Hayder’s Tokyo uses traditional Gothic motif and convention and to what effect. When complete the encyclopedia should become a wonderful resource for students and Gothic enthusiasts to reference in their own studies.

Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?

I have always loved to write – and have done so since I was a small child. I mostly write non-fiction (academic reference texts specifically) and this was in many ways a logical extension to my on academic study. I really am very lucky, I get to write about the books that I love!

Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?

Probably when I held the first copy of Crime and the Gothic in my hands! Seeing it in the flesh for the first time made it all very real. All of a sudden this word document that I’d been working on for a few years became a very real thing – it was a very proud moment.

Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?

It was the tutor that I’d worked with during my studies for my Masters Degree that first encouraged me to try and publish. I had originally wanted to begin a PhD (something I still very much want to do!) but it just wasn’t the right time for me as I had two very small children and couldn’t see a way to make it work. My tutor suggested that instead I write a book – and that’s just what I did.

Fiona: How did you come up with the title?

It took a while to be honest! I wanted something that sounded interesting but also really spoke as to what the book would be about. Academic reference titles need to be very clear and concise – and I think I managed to do that.

Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?

There is a definite writing style for academic reference – it needs to be fairly formal, clear and coherent. It also needs to be very structured and reasonably concise. It also has to remain true to the title – there is often little room for deviating from the subject matter. That said there is plenty of room for opinion , argument and agreement within the framework.

Usually a great deal of research is required, and this is my favourite part of the process.

Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?

That depends on the nature of the research I need to do to be honest.  For my second book Gothic Science Fiction I visited any Science Fiction event that I could get to, speaking to fiction writers and Science Fiction enthusiasts to gather thoughts and opinions that would be relevant.

When I have finished the article I am working on at the moment I plan to begin working on the proposal for my third book which will study crime fiction published during the Cold War years. The English Heritage have recently opened up a Cold War bunker just outside of York, and I’m desperate to go and have a look round! All in the name of research, obviously…..

Fiona: Who designed the covers?

I chose the images and my publishers chose the fonts and then did all the formatting. I had a huge bank of images to choose from and it was nice to get the opportunity to put my stamp on the front cover.

Fiona: Are there any new authors that have grasped your interest?  Who is your favorite writer, and what is it about their work that really strikes you?

Oh I have so many authors whose work I love I couldn’t possibly choose a favourite! I love Stephen King, I remember being terrified by his work when I was a child and even today I am blown away by the man’s imagination and his brilliant ability to write so well that event the craziest idea becomes believable.

I also really like Mo Hayder’s writing, Patricia Cornwell and Kathy Reichs. I love crime fiction, and I read as much of it as I possibly can.

Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.

Again, my tutor, Clive Bloom. He was and still is someone who inspires me very much.

Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?

I would love one day for it to be my career yes! I think that is something a lot of people are working towards. Never say never!

Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?

More research, always. You can never have too much knowledge when it comes to academic writing I think – it truly broadens the horizons and definitely allows for greater perspective.

Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?

Oh so much! Science Fiction was a genre that I actually knew very little about, and it was great fun to really get involved with it – looking at its development and growth over very many years. I particularly enjoy carrying out the research that helps me to understand the social and cultural contexts in which a novel is set.

Fiona: Any advice for other writers?

To stay focused and realise that a novel or a text such as mine can be started – and with sufficient discipline it can be finished too!

Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?

Mostly a great, big thank you! I hope you enjoyed them and that within them you found something to aid your studies or develop your interests.

Fiona: What book are you reading now?

I have just finished reading Justin Cronin’s The Passage. I last read it as part of my wider reading for Gothic Science Fiction and I wanted to read it again for pleasure rather than study, and I enjoyed it very much.

Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?

No! I wish I did. I remember loving Nancy Drew as a child, anything by Enid Blyton and the series of Worst Witch stories. I was an avid reader and an avid user of my local public library. I remember my Dad taking me to the library on at least a weekly basis just change my books.

Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?

My children! They both have a great sense of humour and they are truly very funny sometimes! Equally they drive me to distraction a lot of the time…sometimes I swear I am only one wet towel on a bedroom floor away from a complete meltdown……

Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?

I played this game at a dinner party recently – only we were allowed to choose five people – so I’m going to have to narrow it down somewhat! One person…….Anne Boleyn or David Bowie. I can’t decide. I’m sorry! Anne Boleyn just to ask what was true and what was just hearsay, and Bowie, well because he’s Bowie!!!

Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?

I love vintage clothing and I have a bit of an obsession with rummaging through antique shops and flea markets.

Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?

I don’t watch a great deal of television to be honest, but I do love my films. Anything with Dirk Bogarde is a winner, anything Hitchcock and I also am totally into German expressionist film at the moment – Conrad Veidt is just wonderful and I particularly like The Man Who Laughs.

Fiona: Favorite foods, colors,  music?

I love Thai food – the colours, the spices and the aromas are simply wonderful. My favourite colour is yellow – someone once told me that yellow is the colour of hope. I don’t know if it’s true or not, but I always associate yellow with optimism and positivity. I like all kinds of music really, apart from Jazz. Can’t seem to get my head around that at all.

Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?

Marry a writer. Then I could write. By proxy.

Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?

24 hours! That is no time at all. I guess I should say by finding something that I’ve always wanted to do – being carefree and unapologetic, but knowing me I’d clean the bathroom and get a wash on so the kids had clean pants for the next week or so!

Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?

Now this I have covered! My eldest is under strict instructions to have it say ‘Here is Mum. She was pretty epic. She loved pineapples. And us.’

Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?

Yes I do! You can find my website at www.sianmacarthur.com where you can email me if you have any questions about my work or my research. I also have my Twitter account, @SianMacarthur – please do get in touch!!

Amazon page. https://www.amazon.co.uk/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=sian+macarthur