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 Al Burke, and I’m 46.
Fiona: Where are you from?
I live in Vancouver, Canada, but I’m from Dublin, Ireland. Moved here about eight years ago.
Fiona: A little about your self (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
I have a wife and two awesome kids who keep me feeling young (and dumb). I work in my local library and like to read, watch movies/TV and listen to music. I go for occasional hikes too. Basically I do very little. Oh yeah, I also write. I have a degree in Philosophy.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
I’m currently working on some short stories based on folk horror, and also a trilogy based on Irish mythology. I have some others in the pipeline. I just need to focus and finish them one at a time.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I wrote about American college football (and some NFL) for about five years or so before I got burned out and decided to take a break. That’s when I decided to try a novel, which I had been planning for a couple of years previously.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
When I was started writing about football. I used to write when I was kid, and I did some other projects over the years, so I guess I was always was a writer.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
I’d been thinking about it for some time, and finally took the plunge. Wandering the stacks of a library can have a strange effect on you too.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
Funnily, the title was the first thing I came up with. I have another book I’m working on that I already have the title for.
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 I have a particular style, but humour is definitely a factor (at least I like to think so). There’s also some smatterings of some philosophy in there too. I think the biggest challenge in almost every genre is staying fresh, creating your own voice/style.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
It’s fantasy, and I haven’t really based the characters on anyone I know. My folk horror is far more close to home. Some are stories I heard from my great uncle as a kid, and have some personal experiences thrown in for good measure.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
Only in my mind.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
RL Weeks, who as as an author of some repute.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
I don’t preach. but I like to drop some earworms to get people thinking.
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 could give you a list as long as my arm. I like authors who make their characters real – flawed just like the rest of us.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
My local library (aka work).
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Not yet. Maybe never. I’m just having some fun right now. If it takes off, so be it, but I’m not quitting my job any time soon.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
The first edit.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
It’s a marathon, not a sprint. And it’s damn hard work, but rewarding.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
Chris Hemsworth. Zach MacGowan for lead #2.
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Sit your butt down and write. You’ll have good days and bad days, but stick it out.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
Thanks for reading. Hopefully have something new sooner rather than later.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
The Art of War anthology. It’s outstanding.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
Nope. I have read a ridiculous amount of books.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
Laugh? Everything, especially my kids. Never been much of a cryer, except when peeling onions. Maybe I have onion empathy.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
Somebody who owes me money. It’s a long list.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
Nothing too exciting outside of reading and watching stuff or playing with my kids. I’m at a stage in life where I’m comfortable with that.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
Sci-fi or dark thrillers. Currently watching Black Mirror (literally, as I type this).
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
I always say steak for food, but I love a good burger. I could also eat chili every day. Favourite colours – Black? Blue? Don’t care a whole lot. Music – I have eclectic tastes depending on what I’m doing. When writing I like to listen to classical instrumental, particularly Beethoven.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
Read. Watch TV more than usual.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone? S
top standing look at a rock and get on with your lives.
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
You can find my sporadic posts at http://www.alwroteabook.com/