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 Sean Kerr and I turn 50 in October! Ewww…but it’s just a number lol!
Fiona: Where are you from?
I am from Swansea originally, but I moved to Cardiff 30 years ago to be with my husband.
Fiona: A little about your self (ie, your education, family life, etc.).
I used to have an Interior Design Business but had tio let it go a couple of years ago when I became seriously ill. Because of my health, I work from home, and I love it! I make jewellery and have an online Etsy shop, KERRCARDS, and I am a content writer for an American firm writing articles for online magazines and blogs. And, I am an author.
Fiona: Tell us your latest news.
I am just venturing into the world of Audio books for the first time, and I am so excited about it. My first release will be ‘The Man Inside Me’ which should be live by the end of September. I then hope to move on to my first ever book series, Dead Camp.
Fiona: When and why did you begin writing?
I have written stories since I was a child. I am a mad Doctor Who fan (Tom Baker is my Doctor) and I used to make up my own stories. Then I saw Alien for the first time and it changed my life. I became a horror and sci-fi addict. I also love old British sci-fi such as Quatermass, and I am a huge conspiracy nut, so all of this combines into one mad brain full of plot bunnies.
My first book was published five years ago. It took me two years to write that first Dead Campo book, but when it was published, I realised that writing was something I needed to make a priority, despite dabbling for most of my life. I now have more than 10 books out there, and a lot more to come!
Fiona: When did you first consider yourself a writer?
I guess that has to be when Extasy books published my first novel, Dead Camp. That was validation for me. That was when I could say for certain I was a writer. It was the most thrilling experience of my life, and I haven’t looked back since.
Fiona: What inspired you to write your first book?
When I was 8, I read Dracula for the first time. I have read that book so many times over the years. Then I read a book called The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova, and it changed everything for me. It’s a huge historical tour de force concerning Vlad Tepesh/Dracula, and it changed the way I viewed my writing forever. It opened up this whole world of history, and I have been fascinated with it ever since.
Dead Camp came about from my desire to create my own Vampire mythology. I wanted to explain why some vampires could walk by day, some couldn’t. Why were some gorgeous, and others ugly? You know how it goes. I had the idea that I somehow wanted to unify the mythology under a different style.
I then saw a World War 2 film called Deliverance. Suddenly, I found myself wondering what would happen if Vampires were in the mix. So the idea of Vampires and Nazis stemmed from there. Once I started the research, I realised that I could completely subvert History, and this vast conspiracy story came together.
My first book series, Dead Camp spans centuries. From the beginning of time, to the Crucifixion, Victorian London and World War 2. It’s a huge, complex interweaving story where every character is connected. The planning for it was immense. But its amazing where a film and a bonkers brain can lead you!
Fiona: How did you come up with the title?
Much of the first two books take place in a concentration camp, and the two main characters are dead. Also, one of the main characters is outrageously camp…he’s a ghost…so Dead Camp came around as a play on words. It was one of the very first things that came to me and stuck throughout all the years of writing the series.
Fiona: Do you have a specific writing style? Is there anything about your style or genre that you find particularly challenging?
I use a lot of history in my books, and they tend to be complex and twisty! I love to take known concepts, classics, and established events and twist them to my own evil needs. So, there is always a huge amount of research to do before I start to write. And because I’m known as a very descriptive writer, I really like to research the areas where my books take place. I try to transport my readers to each location, so detail and authenticity is really important to me.
While the research is daunting and a little intimidating, I love it. The challenging part is to ensure that every plot point and character arc ties together perfectly, and in unexpected ways. I tend to write complex stories, so I have to plan everything from the outset. But the most challenging aspect for me is the start itself.
When I write a book, I need to find my way into the story from the outset. The tone, flavour, colour of the book and the character of the book needs to make itself present as soon as I start to write. I have to find a way into the manuscript that is slightly off kilter and odd lol! I like to start a book where my readers think ‘WTF?’ I have had many false starts. I have been known to scrap entire chapters and start again. But for me, I have to have that voice and character of the manuscript right for me when I start, or I just don’t seem to be able to get into the book.
Fiona: How much of the book is realistic and are experiences based on someone you know, or events in your own life?
Oh heck no. While the historical events are real, and most of the locations, the vast majority of my characters remain complete fiction. Perhaps some of the angst my characters go through represents some of my life. I guess authors tend to draw on past experiences and emotions when they write, and I am no exception.
Fiona: To craft your works, do you have to travel? Before or during the process?
Oh, I wish. I would love to go to some of the places I have written about. I have been to Rome and Vatican City, and that was a stunning experience which found itself in the pages of my Dead Camp books.
Fiona: Who designed the covers?
My Dead Camp covers were designed by my publisher, Extasy Books. All my self-published works have been designed and created by me.
Fiona: Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?
Tolerance. Love. Respect. Understanding. Acceptance. While there may not be anything original in these concepts, they still ring vitally true.
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?
Elizabeth Kostova who wrote The Historian is an absolute inspiration to me because she changed the way I write. She showed me that history can be as much of a character in a book as the Vampire or Monster. Bram Stoker still remains my hero. The way he wrote Dracula was revolutionary, and it is something I try very hard to emulate in my own works.
Ian Cadena is a writer of Urban Fantasy as well as some very naughty MM books, and I love his use of words and his outright cheekiness in his books. He is a very talented Author.
Viva Gold writes tremendous love stories, and her use of the English Language just captivates me. Her books are very naughty, but always with a strong message and powerful, emotional storylines.
Fiona: Outside of family members, name one entity that supported your commitment to become a published author.
My best friend Krys Randall. He is the one person responsible for me completing Dead Camp. He is a big fan of those books, and without him encouraging me and pushing me, I would have given up before the books were published. I have a lot to be grateful to him for. He gave me the courage and the confidence to try.
Fiona: Do you see writing as a career?
It is my career, and one I am profoundly grateful to have. It is an honour and a privilege to be an author. Every time someone buys one of my books, it is a huge privilege. With so much material out there, they choose to read one of mine, and that is a very humbling and extraordinary experience.
Fiona: If you had to do it all over again, would you change anything in your latest book?
No. I think that would take away the integrity and the spontaneity of my books. Yes, they are flawed, but if I went back and changed them, they would not be the books I intended. Once the book is published, its out there, and you just have to let it fly on its own accord and hope it will find a loving audience.
Fiona: Did you learn anything during the writing of your recent book?
Not to travel on a train. If you read ‘Alive’, you will see why!
Fiona: If your book was made into a film, who would you like to play the lead?
If Dead Camo was made into a film, then Zac Efron as Eli, Hugh Jackman as Gideon, and James McAvoy as Malachi. When I was writing those books, they always remained my constant inspiration for the characters.
Fiona: Any advice for other writers?
Never give up. Keep trying. Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do it. But also, treat others as you wish to be treated. We are all human together, so lets always be kind and considerate to each other.
Fiona: Anything specific you want to tell your readers?
I would like to thank my readers for all their amazing support, their kindness, and their friendship. My life changed 18 months ago, and it was my readers who got me through the most difficult time in my life. I would not be an author without my readers. They make me an author, and I thank them with all my heart.
Fiona: What book are you reading now?
The Nexus 2 Samhain by Ian Cadena.
Fiona: Do you remember the first book you read?
Target books, their Doctor Who series when I was about six.
Fiona: What makes you laugh/cry?
Farting jokes. Makes me laugh every single time. I’m shallow, what can I say?
ET makes me howl like a baby.
Fiona: Is there one person, past or present, you would love to meet? Why?
I would love to meet Bram Stoker. I would love to talk to him about his research and experiences when writing Dracula. Just to delve into the mind of that genius would be a dream come true!
Fiona: Do you have any hobbies?
I’m a trained artist, so I love to paint and draw. I love films, and I have a HUGE sci-fi collection. Cinema is also a big love of mine. I also make hand made cards and Jewellery.
Fiona: What TV shows/films do you enjoy watching?
All the Alien Films. Doctor Who. Star Trek….actually, the list is vast but you get the idea lol!
Fiona: Favorite foods, colors, music?
Steak!! Chocolate!! Blue! Black! Anything by Judy Garland, Barbara Streisand, and as many Musicals as I can cram into my collection.
Fiona: Imagine a future where you no longer write. What would you do?
I would be painting. That is one of my great loves, though I haven’t done so for a long time because the writing takes up every moment of my spare time.
Fiona: You only have 24 hours to live how would you spend that time?
Now that would be x rated! Needless to say, my husband and I would not leave the bedroom!
Fiona: What do you want written on your head stone?
He wrote good books!
Fiona: Do you have a blog or website readers can visit for updates, events and special offers?
Amazon Authors page USA https://www.amazon.com/Sean-Kerr/e/B01A5CEPV2?ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_3&qid=1567115780&sr=1-3
If you are in the UK Sean Kerr will be at The ShiMMer MM UK Author Event on the
22 .2 20 in Birmingham for more info go to the FB Page shimmer Attendees Group