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?
Hi, everyone. It’s lovely to meet you. My name’s Christie Adams, and I’m as old as my tongue and a little bit older than my teeth! The first landing on the moon took place in my lifetime—I remember seeing it on TV at school, which will probably tell you I’m 50-something.
Fiona: Where are you from?
I live in north-west England, in a seaside resort called Southport, and I’ve lived here all my life.
Fiona: A little about yourself (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
Oh, let’s see. I attended the local girls’ grammar school, where you went if you passed an exam called the 11-plus. There was a separate grammar school for boys, as well. I’m not married, and I don’t have any children—not surprisingly, I don’t have any grandchildren, either. As well as writing in about every spare moment I have, I also have a full-time day job, which I can’t talk about!
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
This the first time I’ve gone public in detail about my next book. The title is Charity’s Heart, and it’s the first in a new spin-off/crossover series called Spectrum Security Inc. The publication date is 12 March 2019.
It’s a spin-off from my Club Aegis series, but the really exciting news is that it’s a crossover with Susan Stoker’s Special Forces: Operation Alpha world.
My Club Aegis series is set in the UK, and features characters who are former members of the British armed forces. The stories are romances with elements of suspense, spiced up with more than a little BDSM, hence the connection with the club.
However, another aspect of the books is the connection the characters have with Spectrum Security. In the new series, Spectrum Security is expanding to the US. Stories in this series will share some characteristics of the Club Aegis books—former members of the British military in stories with elements of suspense—but the setting will be the US, and here won’t be any elements of BDSM.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
Good question! I’ve started writing three times in my life. The first time was in my teens, in the 1970s, when I used to write what’s now called fan fiction for my favourite TV shows. Even then, my stories tended to be romances. As for the why, it was just for my own enjoyment.
Life got in the way, as it does, and I started again in the late 1980s, when I discovered romances published by Mills & Boon. I decided to try writing again, with a view to submitting to M&B. My efforts were—unsurprisingly—rejected, but I did have a little success with a couple of short story competitions in the early/mid-1990s. The first was second place in a short story competition in a computer magazine, and the second was when I won a competition to write an erotic short story for a women’s magazine. In the light of that success, I submitted another story to the women’s magazine, which they published on commercial terms.
The third time started in 2012, when I rediscovered my writing mojo after a break of probably around 16-18 years. A few months after starting again, I decided I’d like to work for myself at some point, so it had better be something I enjoy doing, and I enjoyed writing.
This was around the time when Fifty Shades Of Grey was hitting the headlines, and given my success with the erotic short story competition, I thought I’d have a go at writing a rather more steamy romance. This time around, I was luckier with my submissions—the first publisher rejected that story, but the second one accepted it.
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
You know, even now, I’m still not sure I do consider myself a writer (and if my editor reads that, she’ll yell at me—again!) I used to read avidly as a child, and authors were these mystical creatures who didn’t inhabit the same world that I did, and who I could never hope to meet.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
If we’re talking about my third and ongoing writing life, then that would be a desire to be self-employed, coupled with seeing if I could write something good enough to be published. And having rediscovered writing, I just wanted to see if I could write a full-length novel.
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
For me, titles are like blurbs—incredibly difficult to create. My first book with the publisher originally had the title it now has (that publisher closed and I got my rights back, so I now publish independently), but for the publisher, I changed the title to something I could adapt for books in a series. The title now is The Velvet Ribbon (Club Aegis #1).The main male character uses a velvet ribbon as a temporary collar for the main female character.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
I probably do have a specific style, but I’m not sure I can describe what it is. One thing comes to mind, though—sometimes my sentences can be a little too long. I tend to write from the point of view of both main characters, and I might also use the POV of a supporting character occasionally. I prefer to write in third person past tense, although I did write the prologue of the sixth book in my series in first person present tense, because I couldn’t write it any other way.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
That varies from book to book. Annoying people may have a villain named after them, although I do something with the name to protect the guilty! A few years ago, I attended a writers’ con in New York, and had a bit of a disaster with my suitcases before I even left the house. I used part of that disaster in a short novel called Ask Me. I suspect there are elements of my personality in my female characters—or elements I would like to have!
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
Not really—with the day job, I don’t really have the opportunity to go off on research trips, so I tend to use the internet a lot.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
My cover designer is a wonderful artist based in the US, by the name of Syneca Featherstone.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Not that I’m aware of—all I want is for readers to be entertained for a while.
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?
Oh, this is so difficult to answer! There are loads of authors whose work I love, so I can’t possibly highlight one. They write marvellous books with engaging characters and wonderful plots, and they just draw you into that world.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
My editor—not only did she give me my big break when she contracted my first books with the now-defunct publisher, but she’s supported me ever since, especially when the doubts creep in. I also have some wonderfully supportive friends.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
It is a career, and one I would love to have full-time. Only time will tell if that aspiration becomes reality.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
Another good question. I’m probably still a little too close to my latest book to give you a good answer. Ask me again six months from now, and I’d probably find plenty I’d want to change.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
Most of my previous books have had elements of BDSM to them, but the latest one doesn’t. It’s still a steamy romance, but it’s been a refreshing change.
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
The model on the cover! When I started writing the book, the cover hadn’t been created, but since I like to have the cover available while I’m writing, I asked my lovely, talented cover artist to create one of her works of art. When I saw the cover to Charity’s Heart, I changed the main male character’s appearance to fit the cover. He’s perfect!
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Don’t give up on your dreams. Write the best you can. Read a lot, and learn from what you read. You never know when success might be around the corner.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
That I am so grateful for their support, and every time they choose to buy one of my books, I send them a silent
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
Reviving Bianca by Becca Jameson.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
Possibly not the first book I read, but I do remember having a children’s version of Black Beauty by Anna Sewell when I was quite young. I also used to read a lot of books by a British children’s author called Enid Blyton, and a favourite one of hers was The Magic Faraway Tree.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
I have a weird sense of humour. I’m a Brit, so sarcasm is pretty much in our DNA. I used to be much worse when I was younger. As for crying? Sentimental things get to me, and I have to admit, I still miss my dogs, Henry and Oliver. They were miniature long-haired dachshunds. Oliver passed away in 2011, Henry the year after, and after all this time, I can still end up having a little cry when I think about them.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
The Dalai Lama. Based on interviews I’ve seen with him, I think he’d be a calming, peaceful influence. I also think he’d be fascinating to talk to, and I got the impression that he has quite a sense of humour.
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
Well, since I have the day job at the moment, I have to say that writing is my hobby as well.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
Now that’s difficult. I like James Bond films, romantic comedies, the old Sherlock Holmes film with Basil Rathbone playing Holmes—but I also enjoy Sherlock with Benedict Cumberbatch. I’m currently watching reruns of a science fiction series from the early 1970s, and one of the recurring characters is played by Benedict Cumberbatch’s mother. Yes, I am that old.
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
I like Italian and Chinese food, although my favourite local restaurant has such a lot of different dishes, it’s difficult to say what their style is. My favourite colours are purple, green and yellow. I touched on music earlier, but I like lots of different types of music. I have a USB drive in my car, and on that I have classical music, Mongolian folk rock, pop, mainstream rock—all sorts of different types.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
A writer is supposed to have imagination, but that’s the one thing I can’t imagine!
Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?
Around dogs. I love dogs, and I miss mine so much. The last one passed away in 2012, and not a day goes by that I don’t think about the dogs I’ve had over the years.
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
Nothing. I’m not planning on needing a head stone. Not a wish for immortality for myself, but an intention to have my ashes scattered where those of my family have been scattered. My legacy, such as it is, will be the books I’ve written and published. As a British publisher, I have an obligation that has existed in English law since 1662, to deliver a copy of everything I publish to the British Library, and five other major libraries. I think that’s a pretty good way of leaving something behind.
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
Readers can find out more on my website, which is at https://christieadamsauthor.com/
Amazon Authors page UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Christie-Adams/e/B00VCGEIZO/ref=dp_byline_cont_book_1
Fiona, there’s just one more thing left to do, and that’s to thank you very much for giving me the opportunity to take part in this interview.