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 Ronald Craig and I’m 42 years of age.
Fiona: Where are you from?
I am from Fishburn, which a small coal miners village in the land of the prince of Bishops, Uk. I now live in Redcar, which is a sea side town about 30 minutes from Fishburn.
Fiona: A little about your self (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
I have worked within family businesses since 13 years of age. In my adult career, I choose to work within the mental health sector, working with individuals with specific needs. Which was an amazing time of my life, meeting people from all walks of life. I did however have to educate myself to better understand and help people. I studied, PTSD-diploma, health and social care level III, Equality and diversity level II, inequality in woman’s services level I, DBT and an abundance ofin house training. This empowered me to try and understand people with individual needs.
I have two amazing daughters Sophina is now 4 years of age going on 14 & Scarlett nearly 2 years of age going on 20. AKA… Nina & Lettie the witches. They are my muses and ever ending fun and fears of the world. I’m also a stay at home dad, very hard at times.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
Mainly sad news, my sister (Sharon). Who is one of the strongest people I will ever meet. Passed away on 3rd of jan 2019. I only mention this because I’m so amazed by her will and strength, she was one of them people you only get to meet once in your life. And I can only hope I can be that person for my daughters.
On a more upbeat note. I have two books published of The Little Witch series and one different story that me and my daughters have come up with. It astounds me at such a young age the imagination and insight they have helped me to write more stories than I have time to write.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
When my daughter Sophina was born. It was one of them nights, she had her last bottle for the evening. It was cold out, snow, ice and strong winds that found gaps in the cold house we lived. I sat and watched Sophina sleeping in her Moses basket. I began to wonder what the world will be like for her and how I could express, interject or project my thoughts on this world to her.Like I said it was a cold night my partner was out working in the cold helping empower people in the community (medically, physically and mentally supportive). The Little Witch was born, I’ve not stopped writing since.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I write for my daughters I’d love to believe I’m creating something individual for them. Books, audiobooks and hopefully a cartoon. As claimed to be a writer! I think I’d leave that down to my daughters to say when they are older.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
My daughters are my main inspiration. Everyday, something new happens in their lives. Whether it’s understanding emotions or life experiences, although they has such abundant information going through their little heads the games they play help me create characters.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
Sophina was at that stage of her life where her eyes changed shades daily and her hair was starting to curl. I had the thought that she must have magic changing her look everyday. So we wondered who she was going to take after me with dark brown eyes and dark hair or her Mam with green/blue eyes and fair hair. So the title The Little Witch came to my mind.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
I like to keep the words to a minimum as possible. I tend to babble or go around the long way to say what I’m wanting to say. ‘Words matter’ and a times I find it difficult to understand the experience I’m wanting to share. It does take time sometimes, but it does seem to work it self out. Eg… I have charters through my stories called The Under-Bed Trolls. I didn’t know what they were or whether they are to be friend or foe. All I knew is they are Scottish and have clans that make up these little magic creatures. The song ‘Jammin’ called by Bob Marley came on the radio and it came to me. A world underground a world of culture and karaoke loving trolls. The large amount of information about the characters is so funny and interesting it is difficult to put them all individually on paper.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
A lot of the experiences in the story are through my life experiences. I have a complex family with many ‘secrets if you like’. Such as family I’ve never seen or knew about, another side to my family I’ve never known. There’s also the Thomas family named in kind after my late father-in-law John Thomas. Who is a hug charter in him self. The boy living next to Nina And her family The Whosley’s. One morning he stands outside looking up the street for someone.
A sample from my unedited third book, below.
Nina sat next to mother at the table.
‘What is John Thomas doing outside he looks odd stood there?’. Asking mother.
‘He’s waiting for his older brother, before the potion wore off, from the Key Lime Pies. Mr Thomas told me his son was coming to call and see them. He has been saying this for years but never calls. He promised John-Thomas he would take him to town for the day and that he missed him. Mr Thomas warned John-Thomas about putting hope in his older brother but he’s young and hopes for the best’.
‘That’s awful’ Nina voiced.
Mother nodded in agreement, as the family listened on.
‘He’s not a bad person but I guess when he calls he’s under the influence of good ideals, and good ideals makes you say or want do things that you can not do or keep sometimes. Like father when he sets about fixing something’.
The family laughed as father looked up, saying ‘Hey’ with a playful tone.
This is from my childhood waiting for my brother to come home for a weekend. Without a father he was my nearest person I could relate to with different experiences. But once he was home he would go out drinking and see his friends. Being a sad experience especially when he would come home from drinking and say you can come over to mine for a night we will get a video and a takeaway which was the most exciting thought I could think of. But by the morning it would have changed, he would be working or say he couldn’t remember saying it and it never did happen. This is almost the same as John Thomas but there is a story all of its own there.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
I’ve not travelled much, this is something I would like to do in the future. I have two girls to inspire and show them the world of wonder and arts and let them learn new experiences I will never know.I have many things to learn myself as I learn new life experiences.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
I designed and illustrated my books myself, albeit basic but colourful. I’ve left charters from the illustration from the books for future professionals.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Yes! The charters are the story, a young girls story is told by someone who gave everything for his family. She ‘Nina’ too will experience the worse that magic is. Also a story to show all people but especially my girls and individuals can achieve something they may not know now but will learn internally and emotionally. Things are not always what they seem and Nina & Scarlett will find out in life like we all have to.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
My family aren’t that all supportive, in fact they only read my stories when I buy them for they. My old headmaster Mr Handley is one of the of the most amazing people and teachers I could ever hope to meet and know. His inspiring Sarah Stuart was the first author I
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
I don’t think anyone writing would not want to have a career in writing. It’s not something I would be interested if it was in say, tabloid. It’s something more to me it’s after all for my daughter’s, which I’d say was more personal. I will continue to write for my girls and hopefully inspire them to follow on with writing.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Without a large budget I would say it would be the same process that I’ve ended in now. Small steps on a tight budget. I’d say though this is not something I could do on my own, PA’s and other outlets and management teams will have vast amounts of experience. And I also think you need to be told what to do at times.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
Yes. I’ve learnt so much about having a family and understanding what my family is and what it means to look after someone so precious. All I can do is put my experiences into what I’m trying to achieve with my writing.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
I want a cartoon with all the emotions and funny characters I can put into a cartoon so much more and that would be amazing. I’ve got my first book as an audiobook and I wanted the producer to be my main man. A face to put to the words, I’m not an out spoken person so with the talents he has that would have be great. But this is not to be, as he’s decided to peruse his career away from audiobooks. We still talk at times. He’s what I’d call my Mr Handley (headmaster, who inspired all he teaches).
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Yes. Document your thoughts and ideas constantly it’s a great way to hold on to ideas. And be carful of social media no one does anything for nothing. I’ve heard so many tales of people being ripped off.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
I find its better to gain friends rather than people who want from you. I’m here to make friends and there are so many individuals out there I’ve learned to understand them differently. And I think words matter rather than the number of words.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
Me and my Donna are reading a lot of school books and stores for our girls. Mainly my partner, who out speaks me leaps and bounds. My main books are from Sarah Stuart, LeiveSnellings and books my daughters love such as The tiger comes to tea, Where’sBear and another hundred books. We also lost to audiobooks such as The Gingerbread Man, Tiger comes to tea and our audiobook The Little Witch and the Lost Boy.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
It was a book told to me by Mr Handley. James and the giant peach, it was an amazing story and my imagination was amazed by the concept. This was probably the first book I’ve read or any other from Roald Dahl.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
I’m not much of a crying type. But I do like a good comical movie and it maybe a bit sad but we both like Ben and Holly one of our kids favourite cartoons. There is a grown up element and we find ourselves laughing along. Our favourite stand up comedian is Micheal Macintyre.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
My sister again. And maybe my father who ran off before I was born. But mainly I think I’d like to witness times in history rather than meet an individual.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
Golf and football once in a while. We enjoy camping and spending days out on family adventures.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
Recently I’ve watched Ray Donovan, Breaking Bad and Game of Thrones. Bohemian Rhapsody. And resent films from horrors to comedy movies.
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
Pizza and spiced foods. My partner make rice dishes and dinners. My favourite colour is deep red I also like bright colours. I have a mixed taste of music, not keen on heavy rock but I’m like most people I tend to like most music.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
Everything I do in the future is for my family. I would work hard and give my girls the best future I could.
Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?
I would do all the things I want to show my girls. Travel to places I want to see with my family. I have so much to do and show my girls, 24 hours would not cover it. There are to many special moments I want to have and show my family.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
Read my books. Help make money for my girls.
Maybe, ‘My sweetest thoughts of my girls fill me with sadness thoughts’Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
Amazon.com: Ronald Craig: Books, Biography, Blog, Audiobooks,