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.
Hi Fiona. My name is Gareth Stevens and I write under the name GJ Stevens.
Fiona: Where are you from?
I live in the South East of England, just outside London.
Fiona: A little about your self (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
I studied Electrical and Electronic Engineering and I’m married with three children aged 10 to 14. I work full time and so have to juggle my spare moments between writing, promoting and family life.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
My first novel to be published, In The End, an apocalyptic thriller, releases on 30th November.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I stared writing around ten years ago and I couldn’t tell you why. As an engineer I’ve always been very technical, but I’ve had this artistic side two. One day I just started writing and I haven’t stopped since. That day changed my life so completely.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
It took a little while but after I finished the draft of my first book. I thought to myself, I’ve written a book, so I am a writer. It’s only now that I’m publishing a novel that I consider myself an author.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
Again I don’t know. I just started writing what felt good to write, then kept on writing.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
My current Novel, In The End, is meant to be a realistic depiction of how someone, probably not me, but someone just as normal, would react to the world crumbing around them. Some of the characters are loosely based on people I know, or certainly started out that way, but soon took on lives of their own.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
No. It all just flows from my head.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
My very good friend James Norbury is an amazing artist and he loves the genre. He developed the cover for me after reading the novel. He also painted an acrylic painting of the cover background, which is amazing and hangs in my living room. He also did all my promotional adverts and teaser trailer too. He’s a marvel at anything artistic.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
I guess it asks the reader what would they do in the same situation, would they make the same choices or be able to make the same choices?
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?
Favourite writer would have to be Stephan King but I’ve recently started reading space opera sci-fi novels after a twenty year break. I’m really enjoying Gareth L. Powell and Adrian Tchaikovsky.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
It would have to be my friend Sarah. She loves the genre and is one of the reasons I wrote the book. In The End is co-dedicated to her for her influence and enthusiasm. She calls herself my Annie Wilkes.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
Extremely unlikely. I’d love it to be my career, but unfortunately writers don’t make a lot of money unless they’re extremely lucky or very popular. I doubt I will achieve enough success to give up my day job. However I am very lucky I still enjoy my 9 to 5 most of the time.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
No. I believe in not having regrets. If I wanted to change anything then I should have already changed it.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
I learnt a lot during the writing of all my books. Writing my first 6 books, none of which I will publish, was my training ground.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
Ryan Reynolds. He doesn’t bare any relation to my protagonist, I just would like to get the chance to meet him. 😀
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Write. Write for yourself and write for fun. If people like what you wrote then that’s great. If they don’t then at least you enjoyed yourself.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
Please leave a review. It’s the biggest part you can play in my writing, even bigger than buying the book in the first place. Reviews help sell books and they motivate the authors to write well.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
Children of Time by Adrian Tchaikovsky
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
No, I’m afraid not.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
I’m a pretty emotional person but I try my best to hide it. I last cried when my wife read the dedication in my novel, which was yesterday. She was crying when she read it. I hadn’t let her read it until nearer the release day. I laugh very easily. I like to think I enjoy life and it’s always easy to see the funny side in most things.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
Other than Ryan Reynolds? I would say….Stephen King, but there are many other inspirational people I would love to meet. Stephen inspires me with his novels and his general attitude.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
Too many, most of which have fallen by the wayside when I stared to write.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
I can’t imagine that world. I would be very annoying. I get twitchy and irritable if I don’t get my fix!
Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?
With my family and my friends. Simple.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
I’m being cremated and I don’t want a permanent memorial. They’re not sustainable in the modern world. I just want to be remembered for being me, by those people who want to remember me.
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
I blog a lot about the publishing industry and around the subject of preparing for the end of the world.