1) Tell us a little bit about yourself. How did you get into writing?
My professional life has always been focussed on numbers – I studied mathematics and followed this with a career as an actuary. I am still very happy living in the world of numbers, but I find writing is the perfect escape into something completely different – the world of words! I’ve always written stories since I was young, and haven’t stopped.
2) What inspired you to write your book?
I read a lot of fantasy fiction, a genre I really enjoy for its imagination, escapism and creativity. I also enjoy fast-paced page-turners with frequent twists and turns, such as thrillers or murder mysteries, that I can’t stop reading because I need to know what happens on the next page. My inspiration was to combine these two things I love into one – a fantasy page-turner.
3) What theme or message do you hope readers will take away from your book?
I think that fantasy can give us a new perspective on our everyday lives, by highlighting or exaggerating some aspect of what it is to be human. I was interested in the idea of shapeshifting and invisibility, and what that means for our identity – if I could change my appearance, or disappear completely, whenever I wanted, then what would it really mean to be “me”? As I wrote the book these themes of identity emerged from the story, and I hope the reader will find these as interesting as I did.
4) What drew you into this particular genre?
There is something unique about fantasy fiction. It asks what the world could be like if something, or everything, was different, and then lets us live in that new world. The Sorcerer Within is a fantasy novel set in our world and so blends the everyday with the fantastic, which is a sub-genre of fantasy that I’ve always been intrigued by.
5) If you could sit down with any character in your book, what would you ask them and why?
There is a character in my book who I won’t name as they turn out to be the killer behind the murder at the start of the book. This person has a skewed view on reality, to say the least. I wouldn’t like to spend time with them, but at the same time I would be morbidly fascinated to hear what they thought about what they had done – do they realise how utterly inhuman they are?
6) What social media site has been the most helpful in developing your readership?
Facebook – great for reaching a wide range of people.
7) What advice would you give to aspiring or just starting authors out there?
Don’t give up – I found the most difficult part of writing a book was to keep going, even when it seemed “the end” was so far away.
8) What does the future hold in store for you? Any new books/projects on the horizon?
I have a project on the go to write a traditional-style fantasy novel aimed at older children – I love the idea of writing an escapist fantasy tale that my own children will enjoy reading.
About the Author
I’ve always loved escaping into books. When I get inside a character’s head and look through their eyes and think their thoughts, I forget everything else. Getting inside the head of a character I created is the biggest escape of all.
I often put down a book and find an idea wandering in my head for a book that I want to write myself. The idea I couldn’t resist combining two things I’ve always loved – a fantasy novel, and a page-turning mystery.
Turning an idea into a book was a lot of work but also a lot of escaping, and I enjoyed writing every word. There’s something addictive about reading your own thoughts back after you’ve forgotten exactly what you wrote. It’s like re-discovering a memory. The words kept coming and the story kept living and here we are. The Sorcerer Within is finished.
My ambition now is for as many people to read it as possible. I’d love for you to be one of those people, and if you do, thank you. Let me know what you think