A superhero who really wore tortoise shell glasses and worked as a journalist? Read on and find out more…
If you were to write the ‘origin’s episode’ of your writing what would be the most important scenes? What did your early efforts look like? Are they still around to be used as bribes and blackmail material?
The origin goes back to Grade 3 of primary school when my teacher used to put coloured pictures on the board and ask us to write a ‘composition’ about the picture. I found I was in a comfort zone, in my element. I received praise in those early days and it was encouraging and I just kept writing. No, there are no pieces around now, but I still have the first fully-fledged trilogy I wrote, about 20 years ago. It will never be published as it’s in the deepest darkest oubliette ever, but it is the piece one has to write to start the journey…
All super heroes have their mild-mannered secret identity, what is yours? I promise we won’t tell.
I am someone who likes wearing tortoiseshell glasses and was once a journalist. True story!
Who are your partners in crime? What are their superpowers?
My cover designer – she has the power to read my mind. Such empathy is beyond super power. My editor – he is brutal but has the power to emphasise an authorial voice. My formatter – her power to capture a story for digital media is awesome. And my publisher – he understands the real me. That’s a super power in its own right!
Where do you get your superpowers from?
My mother asked the same thing a long time ago. But my father just used to smile knowingly.
Where is your secret lair and what does it look like?
It’s a little beach cottage and is the closest thing to pocket handkerchief Paradise one can find.
What kind of training do you do to keep your superpowers in world saving form? How do you insure they are used only for good?
I eat masses of chocolate and drink a dry white wine every evening. It works.
Granted, you probably don’t get to wear your superhero costume a lot, but if you did, what would it look like?
Black lycra to cope with the kilos of chocolate eating…
(Seriously I wear jeans. A lot.)
What is your kryptonite? What are the biggest challenges faced with in your writing?
Time and self-discipline are my answers to the former. Time and self-discipline are my answers to the latter.
Who was the supervillain who threatened to stop your latest project and how did you vanquish it?
My mother had an accident and was in hospital for 6 weeks with a further 6 weeks of physical therapy. Whilst it wasn’t vanquished, we coped. Writing was actually my escape.
What important lessons have you learned along the way?
The writing way? That one must have no expectations, take one day at a time and believe that all will be well. It’s actually a lesson for life.
What have been the best/most memorable experiences along the way?
* Making new and wonderful friends across the globe.
* Winning medals and awards.
* Being asked to write for two anthologies to raise money for cancer research.
* My novels rank consistently in various categories of Amazon’s Top 100.
If you did this again what would you do differently and what would you not change?
Nothing really. This is the ride of my life. My cape is streaming behind me as I fly!
What is the best (writing or otherwise) advice you have ever gotten and why.
Read and read more. Observe everything around you. Write and keep writing. Never say never!
Tell us about you new book and why we need to drop everything and get it now.
It is the final book in the three part series The Gisborne Saga, and rounds off the series with a breathtaking ending. The previous books have ranked consistently in the Top 100 at Amazon.co.uk since publication in biographical fiction and medieval historical romance – so seriously, RUN DON’T WALK people, and buy all three!
What’s in store for you in the future? Do you have any other big projects on the horizon?
I am hoping my publisher, Darlington Press, will release my whole backlist in 2015 as paperbacks. I hope to see an intriguing boxed set published for e-book. I hope to see my books as part of a major historical fair in the UK this year. And I hope to begin work on a new historical fiction about a silk merchant in Constantinople in the last years of the twelfth century and the early years of the thirteenth century.
But more than anything, I hope for a contented readership. Cheers everyone, and thank you, Maria Grace, for interviewing me!
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