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 Derek Borne, and I’m nearing 30 years young. (I don’t like to use the ‘o’ word.)
Fiona: Where are you from?
I’m from a little town in Ontario, Canada, called Paris (No, we don’t have an Eiffel Tower, just a cheese commercial).
Fiona: A little about your self (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
When I finished highschool, I worked in construction with my father for a few years. We’ve recently retired from the trade and now sell high quality olive oil and aged balsamic.
My wife and I have been married for 5 and a half years now, and we have a moody bearded dragon who is almost always looking at me like I’m an idiot. (Joke’s on her, though, she has no depth perception.)
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
I’m currently past the halfway point of rewriting my sequel in my series, and I’m hoping to have it out before the end of the year.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
At the age of 14, I wrote the first draft of “The Ultimate Agent”. Mostly, I wanted to prove to myself that I could do it, and I just loved having fun with it.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
It wasn’t until I started writing my first book, which is “The Ultimate Agent” or UA as I like to call it. At that point, I really did my research into how to write true characters and story, and make it all work. But I’m very much a mix of a plotter and apantser when it comes to writing.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
A friend and myself were chatting on MSN (remember the good ol’ days?) one night, and we started throwing ideas around like, “What if a superhero was a spy? Or vice versa?” So I opened Microsoft Word, and let the words flow out of me in a way I’d never experienced before, and I loved every moment of it!
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
There’s always been debates on who is the BEST superhero, or the BEST spy. I figured that once you put the two genres together, you kind of get this “ultimate” hybrid. Therefore, “The Ultimate Agent” was born.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
I would describe my style as descriptive, but to the point. First person can sometimes be very descriptive, but when I read it sometimes I feel like it needs to move along. My novel is more of an omnipresent view, so you can be in every character’s head and see most of what’s going on.
One of the main challenges is writing the action scenes. Choreography can be difficult, but I love it at the same time because you get to put the reader right in the thick of things.
Also, the spy/detective stuff can be a bit of a headache. But once everything is in place, it always pays off in the end.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
There are elements taken from real life, for instance the two main characters of Devon and Brett are definitely inspired by myself and one of my really good friends. As well, I’ve been able to use surnames of my fellow authors and other friends in the book world for characters. Because when you write about a secret agency, you need to flesh it out, right?
And some of the romance is based off when my wife and I were dating, but I won’t get too personal.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
I love travelling, but it isn’t always necessary. I’ve been to Florida and Italy, which are locations for action scenes in my book. But I’ve never been to Australia or New York, which required a lot of research, even down to the street names.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
The cover for UA was created by a fellow author, M. A. Phipps with her company We Got You COVERed https://www.wegotyoucoveredbookdesign.com/
I definitely recommend her, she’s patient and pays attention to detail.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Each character in UA goes on a different journey, which has resulted in me receiving messages from readers telling me which one they connected to more. And sometimes it’s a character that I didn’t expect. But most importantly, there’s a line where it says, “If you have the ability to help someone, you do it. No matter the sacrifice.”
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?
Sarah Noffke, M. A. Phipps, and Frost Kay are three authors who I really enjoy reading these days. Their ability to create multi-dimensional characters is amazing.
My all-time favourite author has to be Michael Crichton. His ability to take science and thriller and mix them together always fascinates me. From “Jurassic Park” to “Prey” (which needs to be made into a movie) is just… yeah. I hope to channel my inner Crichton in my UA sequel… but I won’t say why, because… SPOILERS!
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
Other than my phenomenal wife, there is one person who has been there for me during the beginning, middle, and end of publishing my first novel. This person has done so much for me, and there is nothing I’ll be able to do to thank her for all she’s done. I’ve even come to call her my Auntie, and if she’s reading this, she knows who she is.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
That’s an interesting question. The elusive creature which I like to refer to as “time” loves to play with me. So we may see the UA series end just as a trilogy… unless the fans clamour for more.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
There’s a point where you just need to walk away. Sure, there’s some things that could probably be tweaked, but there’s so much I love about the story and the characters already that I’ll leave it as is.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
Editing. When I was younger, I did everything myself. It wasn’t until I decided to publish to Amazon, that when it came to that point, I contacted an editor that I’d been referred to… and she took me to school. Though it was different, scary, and sometimes frustrating, I knew it would make me a better writer in the end.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
If he was willing to do the big, intense action scenes, Chris Pine would be my pick for Devon Bertrand. But there are technically two leads. The scientist spy Brett Gallagher needs to be played by Tom Hiddleston. I think together, those two would have great chemistry as bro’s, plus Tom needs more roles as a hero.
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Be brave, make connections, and don’t be afraid to ask for help.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
My goal with my book is to inspire people. Therefore, pass it on. Be someone’s hero.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
I’m currently reading Rebel’s Blade by Frost Kay. Once I’m finished, I’ll be moving on to Shadow Fall by Audrey Grey.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
Don’t ask me how, but Robinson Crusoe was the first big book I read. For my age at the time, it was so different and sometimes boring, but I was determined to finish it.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
Just being silly makes me laugh, because life’s too short to be serious. But I’m always a sucker for a rom-com, or movies that give you a good cry. Side-note, I even cried at the end of Peter Jackson’s King Kong… I felt bad for the big lug.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
My real grandmother. She passed away from breast cancer when my mom was a teen. Looking at pictures of her, we have the same nose. I’d love to be able to meet her and compare… oh, and give her a massive hug of course!
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
Singing. I’m pretty much doing it all the time, especially Phantom of the Opera.
Check out my youtube channel https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCqjY2uEbpKTTWGQkZpknTDg
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
Anything Marvel. I prefer the humour rather than dark brooding characters that you can’t connect with.
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
Pizza! Definitely pizza. I enjoy a wide array of foods, and I’ll always try anything once. Colour = orange. Might sound weird, but you asked. As for music, I like a bit of everything except hard rock, metal and rap.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
Will there be pizza? Whatever it is I’ll be doing, I can assure you there will most likely be a slice of pizza in my hand.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
“Pizza”… no, sorry, after the food question I got hungry.
I’d want it to say, “He never figured out how they got the caramel in a caramilk bar…”
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
Yes! Please visit www.derekborne.weebly.com for more!