Thank you for joining me on my blog couch, Fiona!
So, tell us about yourself.
I am an Indie fantasy author with a passion for writing a style of fantasy that not everyone has heard of. My books have a lot of the usual epic fantasy elements; magic & turmoil, but I tend to categories them as more Theological fantasies.
Who are you and what do you like to do when you’re not a writer?
I am a part time writer, full time business owner, wife & mum; although my boys are both adults now, so life is getting a little less crazy. I live in beautiful Noosa Australia and when I am not writing, you will find me kitesurfing or stand up paddle boarding on one of the local beaches.
A busy life! What inspires you to write?
I started writing when I found myself with a little spare time. The spare time didn’t last long, but the passion to write hasn’t waned. I am inspired to write by many things, but the most internal pressure comes from a longing to explore social, cultural, political and religious thinking. These elements affect our tolerance levels and it is my hope that my fantasy writing can highlight the driving force behind these elements of our lives.
Tell us about your journey as a writer.
I started writing a little over 10 years ago. It took me six years to finish that first book but once I got that published, there was no stopping me. Every year since I have released a new book, completing that first series last year with a prequel novella.
Now I have moved on to a new series (The Eternal Realm) with the first book The Jericho Prophecy. I am currently working on drafting a mini series of novellas, so I can release smaller stories more often in the coming year.
How do you keep the creative juices flowing?
I have a really hectic work schedule during a lot of the year. This is one of the reasons I only get one full length novel out each year and why a mini series is on the horizon. To keep the creativity going I read, make notes, market and draft quite a lot, but I don’t write until I have the necessary time to finish in a 4-6 week window.
Staying creative while I am in this writing mode isn’t hard. By this point I have done the research, plotted the story and I am really in the zone.
Give us the elevator pitch for your book.
The Goddess Asherah is tasked with the impossible; To Ensure both sides win the battle for Jericho!
Do you have a favourite character in your story?
I always love my lead female characters (Rahab & Asherah in this novel), but in this book I found Iki, one of the Princes of Jericho really grew on me. He is the comic relief and he and I got into a real groove in this story.
Who is most like you?
I don’t know that any one character is most like me. I guess most of the lead females have elements of me in them, but I also believe each one is quite different from me in many ways.
Who would you like to see play your characters in a movie?
You know I always find this type of question difficult. Although I see the scenes to my book unfold as I write, I always visualise the characters as I envisioned them, not with a particular actor in mind. I am also terrible at remembering actor’s names. I can tell you the movie but not the name 😊 I would be interested to hear what my readers think. I might have to ask them.
Do you have a favourite time of day and place to write?
I usually write in the evenings, after the evening meal. I write with my laptop, sitting on the lounge, next to my husband as he reads or watches TV. I love having background noise, it actually helps me leave the real world for my fantasy world.
Occasionally I get a day off work or a weekend without much on and I zone out for the entire day, writing prolifically in the coolest place which is usually my front or back deck at home.
Do you have a routine?
I release a new book every May. To do this my routine is to draft during the working year and once February hits, I take 4-6 weeks to buckle down and finalise my first draft. If I can write more, I do; usually a novella. Other than the over all annual routine, I don’t fixate on word counts or writing habits. I still work fulltime and when the day comes that I choose be a full time writer, well that’s when the routines will kick in.
What do you do to market your book?
I am constantly learning more about the marketing process, but I have a number of strategies that seem to work quite well. I currently give away the first in my original series free. Destiny of Kings gets some great reviews and gives readers a chance to sample my writing style before buying more books.
I write articles for other authors in similar genres and I do my best to seek out opportunities to work with like-minded authors, like yourself. Being an Indie author means we don’t have any big publishing houses doing the leg work for us. This is great in many ways; we get to choose who and how we align ourselves in the industry and I like that freedom and responsibility.
Who are your three top author crushes?
Wow, I have never thought about it really. I’m more of a writer than a reader, which is weird I know. I most enjoy reading David Gemmell and the Heroic Fantasy genre is still feeling his loss. There is yet to be another who writes as he did. There are a few authors whose career I envy just a little, but there are no real ‘crushes’.
Who would you most like to meet?
In my line of work, I sometimes get to meet famous people, including Sir Richard Branson. I have never really been obsessed with famous people; I’m the girl who could bump right into a leading actor and know his face, but struggle to recall his name.
That said, I would like to meet Obama, I think Mother Teresa would have been awesome to talk to and a conversation with Bob Geldof would be really interesting.
I like your choices! What are your future plans for writing?
I will be working on another novel for The Eternal Realm series, but for now I am focused on releasing the first book, The Jericho Prophecy and drafting a mini series of novellas that feature the Shiloah Priestesses from the later part of my first series. I hope to have the first novella ready before my work season gets busy again. Fingers crossed.
What words of wisdom would you share with aspiring authors?
I believe the first question any author needs to ask themselves is why? Why are they writing? For money, for fame, for posterity, for themselves. Once you have the true, real and honest answer to this question, you have the foundation to work from.
Thanks for chatting with me, Fiona! All the best with your new release!
Please check out Fiona’s links, Dear Readers.
Amazon Link: https://amzn.to/2JpHso0