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?
Daniel Hibbert and I’m 53.
Fiona: Where are you from?
I live in Bedfordshire in England
Fiona: A little about your self (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
I was born in Luton, Bedfordshire, qualified as an accountant without going to University. I still live in Bedfordshire with Penny and our two children (who are now 13 are 16 so they are no longer really children).
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
I have just completed my second book about the way businesses make decisions. I hoping it will be published next year.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I left my full time job in 2016. I felt I had something to say about how companies should pay their employees and I started to try to write a book about it.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
When Thunder Cloud was finished and I asked friends who know a lot about the subject to have a look at it. It was only when they said that it was good that I started to consider myself a writer.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
I had completed a 30-year career in advising businesses on how to reward their employees. It was only when I stopped that I began to understand that gettingthe psychology of reward right was just as important as getting the numbers right. Very few people in business understand this and this why I wrote a book about it.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
The Thunder Cloudis a metaphor forthe way people respond to what they are paid. Thunderclouds build suddenly, can disappear just as quickly and it is impossible to predict how they are going to behave. I played around with a few ideas for the title and this seemed perfect to me.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
My approach to writing is to always convey as much as I can in as few words as possible. I try to keep the language as simple as it can possibly be without over-simplifying what I want to say.
I don’t know if this gives me a particular style, but I certainly hope it does.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
All of it. It’s a non-fiction book based on my experience over a 20 yearsof advising companies on how to pay their people.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
I find that I work very productively on the trains. Somehow the feeling of movement makes my brain work better.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
My publisher BookVenture designed the cover.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Everything in life is more complicated (and interesting) than we think it is. Companiespretend that reward is simpler and easier than it really is because that’s the best way to cope it.When the do not think about the impact that money can have on human behaviour pay decisions can go seriously wrong.
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 read books about history, science, politics and biographies. I very rarely find time to read fiction – there are too many interesting things to read about in the real world. I don’t have a favourite writer. I admire Michael Lewis and Malcolm Gladwellbecause of their abilityto take things that are true and turn them into great stories.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
There really isn’t one. Apart from my family I did not tell anyone about the book until it was ready be published.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Yes. Writing is a second career for me because I’ve already had one.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
No – at the moment I’m very pleased with it. But there might be things I’d want to change if you ask me again in a few years’ time.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
I learned that I enjoyed writing. When I’m writing the time passes really quickly. It is hard work but I love the process of trying to make every sentence as clear as possible. There are times when I have a good new idea for the book and I find this really exciting.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
A film would be fun but my book would never be suitable material for a film!
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Don’t ever write about something that doesn’t interest you. Too many non-fiction books feel like they were only written because the authors got a commission, and it comes through in the writing.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
Look out for my new book about the psychology of business decision making. Business decisions are supposed to be rational, based on research and evidence. The reality is that they are not like this at all. Most business decisionsare guided by human behaviour and business plans are used to post-rationalise decisions that have already been made.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
I have been reading Do No Harm – Stories of Life, Death and Brain Surgery written by Henry Marsh. It’s an astonishing insight into the triumphs and tragedies of a life as a neurosurgeon and brilliantly written.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
No but I remember reading PG Wodehouse when I was very young. I still liked to think there might really be people who live in places like Blandings Castle and I might grow up to live in that idyllic world.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
That’s a tough one – my children can make me laugh and cry!They certainly made us laugh a lot when they were younger.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
I would like to meet Danial Kaheneman. He has done more than anyone to change my understanding of the world and his insights into human behaviour have been the basis for much of my writing.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
I like walking, play tennis and reading. Writing is my main hobby, though.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
I watch TV shows with my family. I usually watch what they want to watch and enjoy it with them. That’s the whole point of TV shows.
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
I don’t have a favourite food or colour. I usually listed to classical music when I’m working. At the moment I am addicted to Mahler. I play all nine Mahler Symphonies back-to-back and never get bored with them.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
That could only happen if I was very ill so I’d rather not imagine what it would be like.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?