What’s so great about your crap book? (Don’t want the boring
details, a couple of lines is suffice!)
Khamsin, The Devil Wind
of the Nile (Book 1 – Legends of the Winged Scarab), plays out in 3080 BC (yes,
that’s slightly before almost everything). Hence, nobody can call me out on the
facts – if they do, they must be really ancient
or very learned—in which case they wouldn’t read fiction anyway!
A girl who thinks like me! When can we hang out?
What do you really think about erotica? Is it the low of the lows for writers?
Not necessarily. It
sells, doesn’t it. Very frustrating to those of us who cower alone in our
garret to hammer out “enduring literature,” starving while we do it.
If you didn’t have your book professionally edited: What made you think you’re so perfect that you didn’t need to pay a professional?
Because I seem to be one
of the few people left in America who observes the difference between “to lay”
(an egg), and “to lie” (in bed). Everyone is always “laying” about; even
mattress sales people.
Yawn, so basically you’re the same as all the rest of the authors on Amazon and you’re the Next Best Thing. I don’t think so. Come on, tell me why should I spend time reading YOUR book over more well-received authors?
Because I just slipped
you a free copy – and because you might learn something. Oh, and because you’ll
give me a rave, I mean honest, review!
Is there an author who inspires (perspires) you? Do you think you write better than them? Is your aim to out-sell them?
James Clavell and James
Mitchener are two of my favorites– they may be regarded as old-fashioned these
days; but then…(you are not rudely going to ask my age now!)
However, somebody just
said that Book 3 (Cataclysm) is “like Dirk Pitt novel, only better.”
Are you old? I mean really, really old like 40 something? (as my son would’ve said!)
In the writing world, have you ever regretted anything i.e written your own review (or written a bad review on a competitor’s novel), argued on-line, copied someone else’s idea?
Wow, any one of that would be lower than writing Erotica.
What qualifications do you have for writing in your genre?
A darn good European
education, and an even greater patience to Google facts and the imagination to weave
them into fiction. Why don’t you check
it out for yourself.
Are you saying I don’t use Google for fact-finding? I’m the OO in Google, Missus!
Many authors use their qualifications to show off their so-called talents i.e. crime writers are often coppers (police, for the non-Brits present) and the book becomes boringly technical. How have you managed to keep your knowledge low key? Or haven’t you bothered?
Even in “good Historical
Fiction,” the action has to outweigh the setting no matter how exotic (a love
triangle, some palace intrigue and the occasional murder always tend to liven
If I were to read your book would I have to scroll through lots of acknowledgements saying how wonderful your book is before I got to the meat of a story?
No. But I do start each
of my “Legends of the Winged Scarab” with a short evocative (and generally unjustly
maligned) Prologue to set the stage. If you can’t hear the winds (Khamsin and
Sirocco) howl about your ears, and taste the sand between your teeth at that
point, I failed you.
What part of the world do you come from?
Born and educated in
Austria, studied languages in London, Paris and Moscow before winding up in the
southern US (that took care of my former beautiful British accent).
What do you think of your government?
The same as I think of
any government. I’d rather not expound on this here. After all, I do purport to
be a lady.
If your book is set outside England would I understand your jargon? I mean, fanny means lady front parts NOT backside, car hood is a car bonnet–everyone knows that, right? Are British Englishisms/Americanisms/Australianisms etc important in your book? It’s all about identity, isn’t it?
“… fanny means lady
You’re kidding! I didn’t
know that. But then, it took me a year to guess what OMG might mean; I surely
hope I guessed correctly because I have used it a couple of times.
OMG – oh my God? Original Mafia Gangsta?
Why that shitty title?
Are you talking about MY
The Devil Wind of the Nile? The one who was just short-listed for the
2014 Indie Historical Fiction Award of the Historical Novel Society to be doled
out in London in September? I am crushed. Just wait ‘til I turn the Curse of
the Mummy on you and suffocate you with a mouthful of desert sand.
Did you run out of ideas?
You mean, as far as a
title is concerned? Not for the first two ‘windy” books; for Book 3, however, I
had to blow up a Supervolcano. Now, I am out of ideas.
If you were me (you know, perfect) and knew nothing about a person and you were told to interview them, what’s the one question you would ask? (answer it).
“I am working on it.”
How long did it take you to complete your book (from idea to publication)?
There you go again,
trying to figure out how old I might be. Let me just say, when I started, my
computer didn’t have a hard drive but I used large floppies for the program itself
as well as the documents (yes, those big black things now on display at the
When I began I had an Olivetti typewriter! The floppies came later for me. I still have them, in fact. Can’t bear to throw them away.
If it took under a year to write: It didn’t take you long to write so does that mean it is poorly researched, edited and written on a whim?
Try 20 years of writing,
querying, gathering dust in a drawer. Happy now?
Wow, you’re OLD!
If it took over a year to write: Does that mean this book is boringly long and laborious to read?
It was! But I slashed 100,000 words
(gosh, the money I could have made turning those lost words into …something).
Do you have any bad habits, or stupid rituals you HAVE to do in order to write?
I am not sure if it’s a
stupid ritual or even a bad one. But daily turning on the computer usually
precedes furious keyboard-pounding.
Authors are usually labelled as ‘dreamers’ and ‘loners’. Have you been labelled as such? And what implications do you think that has on a writer?
Call it what you will,
but extroverts who “talk, talk, talk” usually don’t have time (nor the patience
or intellect) to write it all down.
Love that answer!
What do you think of social media (pick one answer):
1. Somewhere to advertise my book.
2. Somewhere to interact with other writers.
3. Somewhere to find information.
4. All of the above.
Number four in small
doses. On the whole, it’s a bloody time-suck with everyone mostly crowing about
Does ‘being a writer’ make you feel like an outsider with normal, everyday people such as your family and friends?
Not unless they
are “laying on the couch,” ignoring the past participle. “Oh, my,” some might
gush, “I should have went there. Then I could have did this…” That’s
when I become the ear-holding outsider. On the whole though, my friends see me
as exasperatingly normal.
Describe your perfect death (in case I have to kill you)?
Ah, now your reveal your
true colors!Please, I’d like not to
be found naked; or on top or under something (or someone) scandalous.
Just give me a glass of
wine, dribble the content of a few pills into it, and wait (you can sing or hum
if you want). Luckily, you won’t have to look for my teeth because I still have
all of mine. Just run a brush through my hair and pull my lips into a smile as
I slip deeper into oblivion. You can do that much for me, can’t you? After all
I did for you, telling you those secrets.
“Don’t touch that wine!
Didn’t I just tell you about the pills! Some people never listen.” Oh my, too
late. Sorry kiddo, I guess it wasn’t my time after all.
Give me the a) first, b) middle and c) end line in your trilogy.
Book 1 (Khamsin,
the Devil Wind of The Nile)
“Rih al Khamsin!” It was an eerie howl, rather than a cry. It
multiplied and it traveled fast.
b) Maceheads thudded against
human anvils to mingle with the last wails of the
mortally wounded, the blasphemies of the defeated.
the end is but a new beginning for the eternal Ba.”
Book 2 (Sirocco,
Storm over Land and Sea)
“Trexa! Sorokos!” Barely, the fishermen pull their boats onto
shore when the wind arrives all in a rush, malevolent and laden with Libyan
“Mayday! Mayday! Can anyone hear me?”
At last, the tortured planet exhales. Tomorrow has become today.
Book 3 (After
At first, it feels as if the world needed to relieve itself of an
“Fuck the Germans.” Lorenzo glanced at Naunet. “Pardon me, my
dear, I didn’t mean to offend you.
Not until then shall we both find eternal peace.
If this is all too exasperatingly
long and literary, and boring, you can always grab a free copy of Edward, Con Extraordinaire. But a
word of caution: That scoundrel has wormed his way into Book 2 and 3 somehow
(where he is no longer quite so charming). Oh, he also has a cameo appearance
as a bad memory in “Shadow Love.” Really, I must do something about that guy!
Whaa-at? Time already? Yawns. Oh, you’re still waffling, er, talking. I meant talking.
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