Category: Interview

Blog Tour: An Artisan Lovestyle: A Conversation with Kiltie Jackson

Today I am one of the stops on the blog tour for An Artisan Lovestyle by Kiltie Jackson. I interviewed her and there is also an awesome international giveaway for an Amazon gift-card!  If you win then you should buy a copy of An Artisan Lovestyle! This is one I personally hope to read soon.

Book Description:

Are you ‘living’ your life or just living your life?

Elsa Clairmont was widowed barely five years after marrying her childhood sweetheart. She has struggled to come to terms with the loss and, six years later, has almost ceased to live herself. She does just enough to get by.

Danny Delaney is the ultimate ‘Mr Nice Guy’. He’s kind, caring and sweet. A talented artist in his teens, his abusive mother ruined his career in art and he turned his back on his exceptional gift. Now, he does just enough to get by.

On New Year’s Eve, both Danny and Elsa die in unrelated accidents.

Thanks to some poker playing shenanigans, Elsa’s husband Harry, and Danny’s old Art teacher, William, manage to orchestrate a deal with Death that allows Danny and Elsa to live for one more year on the condition they both agree
to complete three tasks.

They have until the last chime of Big Ben on the 31st December to fulfil their quests.

If they succeed, they stay in the world of the living.

If they should fail however…

‘An Artisan Lovestyle’ is a story of personal growth and self-discovery as two people find themselves forced to make overdue changes in their lives, changes in other people’s lives, and all with the added challenge of
finding true love before their time runs out.

Will they do it?
Can they do it?

After all, it’s a matter of Life or Death…

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK


JRR (Jessica’s Reading Room): Did you always want to become an author?

It wasn’t something I had ever given conscious thought to and it was only when I was at a career low-point that I realised this was something I wanted to do. As soon as I made the decision to put some serious effort into the part-time dabbling I had been doing up to that point, I knew with a deep certainty that I had finally made a good call on my future.

JRR: And now you have two completed books for us to read!  Who was the most influential author you read when you were growing up?  Did his/her writings influence you to want to become an author?

I mostly read Enid Blyton as a child and then moved into Catherine Cookson and Jackie Collins (I know – you couldn’t get two authors more far apart in writing styles!) when I got into my teens. I wouldn’t say that any of them inspired me to pick up a pen and write. I think I can blame my own over active imagination for that.

JRR:  Who is your favorite author as an adult? Who inspires you?

I have several favourite authors – Susanna Gregory, Erica James & Karen Swan come immediately to mind. I would like to think my writing style is similar to Erica James as her books are multi-layered with the storyline wrapping itself around a number of different characters. This adds a depth to the story which I like and I have found the same trait coming through in my own work.

JRR:  What inspires you to write? 

Probably escapism! I have a day job which I stopped enjoying a long time ago but bills need to be paid. My writing is my release from the frustration of that. When I write, I feel I have achieved something, that I’m finally doing something I truly enjoy. As soon as I sit down at my writing desk, I feel all the stress of the day just ebb away. Some people de-stress by going to the gym, I do it with writing.

JRR: I understand about bills needed to be paid!  What does your writing process consist of? Do you research or just ‘go with the flow’, Handwrite or type,  do you have music playing or silence?

I mostly go with the flow and research as I go along. When I sit down to begin a new novel, I will have the bones of an idea. I always know how it begins, what happens in the middle and how it will end. For these bits, I will research in advance if it is required. All the stuff in-between, which joins the story up, I will research when the ideas come to me. I ALWAYS type because my handwriting is abysmal, my fingers are rubbish at spelling and it is so much easier for making changes when it comes to editing. Finally, I work in silence. I tried having music on but found it mostly distracting. To compensate, I do have a cat – Princess Moo Moo – who often jumps up on the desk and purrs down my ear. She is doing exactly that as I am typing this. 🙂

JRR: I have two fur-babies as well: They are Sage and Curry. And they love to invade my personal space! What made you choose the Women’s Fiction genre?

I didn’t make a conscious choice to write Women’s Fiction – I just write my stories and then pop them into the categories where I think they fit best.

JRR: Where did you get the idea for An Artisan Lovestyle? Did you base Elsa and Danny off anyone you know? If this were to happen to you, do you think you would be able to complete your tasks?

The idea came from a dream. When I woke up, I realised the concept seemed quite unusual, so I quickly scribbled it down. I was working on my first novel at the time – A Rock ‘n’ Roll Lovestyle – so let this one germinate at the back of my mind. By the time I was ready to write it, most of the storyline had been worked out. Elsa first appeared in my debut novel as Sukie McClaren’s best friend. She was the obvious choice for An Artisan Lovestyle as I wanted to write a series. Danny is a completely new character and neither of them are based on anyone I know. They are my own creations in every way.

If I had to perform these tasks myself, I think I would struggle with the falling in love bit – I didn’t get married until I was over forty so that tells you that falling in love was not something I did easily.

JRR: This is a reason to read BOTH of your novels!!!  I also got married older, not quite  your age: I met my husband at 30 and married at almost 33.

 If you could have dinner with three people(living or dead) who would they be and why?

Stephen Fry because the man is just a god! I love everything he does and would love the opportunity to be in his presence.Dr. Brian Cox because he opens up the universe in the most interesting way and he would work well alongside Stephen Fry.Susan Calman because she is hilariously funny and loves cats so wouldn’t object if she found a cat hair or two in her soup!

JRR:  Which book have you always meant to get around to reading, but still not read?

Too many to mention!

Les Miserables by Victor Hugo and most Charles Dickens spring to mind.

JRR: I know this feeling: Too many books and not enough time! What’s the best advice you have ever received?

Never Wait For a Date! If you arrive at the designated meeting place and he’s not already there waiting for you, then you leave. For, if you were important to him, he would make a point of arriving early. Now you know why I was over forty before I got married!

JRR: Ha! Good advice. Is there anything else you would like to share?

I took my driving test three times. My nerves crippled me on my first 2 attempts. Several years later, I was stopped for speeding. The policeman very kindly told me that whilst I was in the wrong for going so fast, the quality of my driving was absolutely excellent and could not, in any way, be faulted. Apart from the speed of course…!

The reason for sharing this is because it has a moral which is never give up! You may not succeed the first time, or even the second time, but these failures simply help to make you better and, one day, you will become excellent!

JRR: ROTF! That is great!  Thank you for your time with this interview Kiltie!


About the Author:

Kiltie grew up in Glasgow in Scotland; This is a very unique city with a very unique way of looking at life.

When she was old enough to do so, she moved to London and then, after several years of obtaining interesting experiences -which are finding their way into her writing – she moved up to the Midlands.

Kiltie currently lives in Staffordshire with five cats and one grumpy husband. Her little home is known as Moggy Towers, even though despite having plenty of moggies, there are no towers! The cats kindly allow her and Mr Mogs to share their house on the
condition they keep paying the mortgage!

She loves reading, watching movies, and visiting old castles. She really dislikes going to the gym!

Her biggest desire is that one day she can give up the day job and write her stories for a living.

Kiltie’s debut novel, ‘A Rock ‘n’ Roll Lovestyle‘, was released in September 2017 and won a “Chill With A Book – Reader Award” in December 2017.

She first began writing her debut novel eleven years before it was released but shelved it as she didn’t think it was very good.

In November 2016 when, having read more on a best-selling author who had begun her own career as a self-published author, she was inspired to revisit the unfinished manuscript and finally finish what she had started.

Since beginning to write again, the ideas have not stopped flowing. ‘An Artisan Lovestyle’ is the second book in the Lovestyle Series.

Work is due to begin on book three (not yet titled but also part of the Lovestyle Series) in the Summer of 2018.

She currently has a further ten plots and ideas stored in her file (it’s costing a fortune in USB drives as each story has its own memory stick!) and the ideas still keep on coming.

Kiltie now lives her life around the following three quotes:
“I love having weird dreams, they’re great fodder for book plots!”
“Why wait for your ship to come in when you can swim out to meet it?”
“Old enough to know better, young enough not to care!”

Contact Kiltie:
Website
Facebook
Twitter – https://twitter.com/KiltieJackson


**INTERNATIONAL GIVEAWAY**

 Win a £40/$40 Amazon giftcard! This is such a generous giveaway.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box above.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

Blog Tour: Absolute Darkness

Today I am interviewing Tina O’Hailey on the blog tour for Absolute Darkness. In addition to my interview, there are lots of things in store for this tour (including a giveaway)!

Book Description:

A thrill ride through time that will make you hold your breath.

Sitting by the campfire, Brandy admitted a secret to her friends. She swore she saw a ghost when exiting a cave earlier that day. Was she seeing things? Did they believe her? The next day, breaking a cardinal rule, she snuck back to the cave alone. No one knew where she was. What if she fell or was trapped? There would be no rescue.

For ten thousand years Alexander had kept the time streams of this universe safe from an eternal destructive force that continually threatened to tamper and destroy all. Locked in an unremitting battle, the two foes become sidetracked by an unexpected visitor. An entangled journey begins with chilling twists and turns until becoming locked into an inescapable death deep within a submerged cave.

Who will come out of the watery depths alive?

Purchase Link:
Amazon


JRR (Jessica’s Reading Room): Tell us a little about yourself.

I have avoided this question – it is actually the hardest one to answer! Everything I write reads like a baseball card of stats. Here goes. I’m closer to 50 now but still feel like I’m in my 30s some days and like a little kid the other days, yet, I feel like I’ve lived five separate lifetimes worth of experiences. Maybe six. I have the divine luck of being a professor and having worked in a creative industry since my early 20s. Most of my life I’ve had amazing opportunities to travel the globe for my job and meet intriguing people. It has kept me ever curious. Mom of two great young adults (both artists), married to a fella’ that has put up with me for 28 years (also an artist). Together we form a fantastic creative force that usually results in a stream of sarcastic memes throughout the day via group text. If I was to sum me up in a plaque (which sits on my desk): “You can never have too much fun.”

My best weekend involves:
1) caving—which I don’t do as often as I would like but am working to change that.
2) riding motorcycles with my husband—I have a BMW r1200c, it is my favorite, and I think, an ugly bike. It fits me like a glove and I’ve had it for years. My husband has a Kawasaki Connie (Concours), which was mine but the day after I bought it I dropped it twice in a row because my legs are too short, got mad and said, “This is yours now.” He’s six foot. It fits him just fine. I am still shocked when I see pictures and finally realize I’m the shorter person standing there. I’m six foot in my head. (And gorgeous.)
3) watching a movie with a good a glass of whiskey (neat) or a glass of red wine and a good maduro cigar.
4) learning something new. Generally something nerdy involving computers.

JRR:  Did you always want to become an author?

I can’t remember a time that I wasn’t a writer. Imagine an eight year old banging at a typewriter with some self-imposed word quota and deadline. Seriously. I constantly wrote and then hated what I wrote. Tore it up. Wrote more. I would buy Writer’s Markets and pour over them like girls my age mooning over teenage magazines. Oddly, I never considered getting an English degree. My other love was playing piano and that is what I wanted to study. So, of course, my degrees are in animation and computer programming. I’ve been writing text books for a number of years. The novels have always been a secret I wouldn’t let see the light of day. This one, Absolute Darkness, is the first one to escape.

JRR: And we are glad it escaped!  Who was the most influential author you read when you were growing up? Did his/her writings influence you to want to become an author?

I can’t single one writer out. It is more my love of books and reading that has propelled me. The very first book I remember reading was Erma Bombeck’s “If Life is a Bowl of Cherries, What am I Doing in the Pits?” I was seven and obviously had access to my mother’s bookshelf. She was an avid reader. We lived in the country and I had no idea what a library was. So, I read at the library of Mom. That’s not really true. There was a small library at the wee school I attended – I tried to read there. I got in trouble for reading Peggy Anderson’s book “Nurse” because it was “too mature” for me. When I told mom, she handed me her copy of the book and told me to take that to school and read it. She was a bit of a rebel, that Mom. So truly, from then on I read from her bookshelf. What I read was not age appropriate. When I tried to read YA—I could not.

Somewhere in there, around age eight, I started writing. I had to, just as surely as one must eat. I remember my father giving me a Royal typewriter and I loved it. I would write plays. When babysitting my nieces and nephews, I would dress them up and put on fantastic imaginary plays with them, doing all of the speaking parts for them. They were 18 months old – they couldn’t speak yet. When I was a teen, of course, Stephen King was my mother’s favorite and therefore in my possession. “Thinner” was the first book of his that I read. It made an impact on me. Then my father bought an electric typewriter for me.

Ah, but then came the turning point. “Wuthering Heights”. Eighth grade English, I think. I had read the book ahead of the class because I had read everything at home and in the library – why not get ahead on the upcoming required reading? We had an assignment to write what Pip was thinking as he runs from the graveyard. Up until that point, I had only written research papers for school. All my other writing had stayed at home in my box of banned stories never to see the light of day. This was my first creative writing moment that I would share and I had such fun with it. Mr. Yothers, the mild-mannered English teacher, penned in red ink onto the paper, “You should think about becoming a writer!” and he read the paper in front of the class. It was such a wonderful moment for a shy, insecure, withdrawn, adolescent to be seen. That one moment of affirmation started an obsession. I then purchased a word processor with a printer from my savings and started to write more.

JRR: Who is your favorite author as an adult? Who inspires you?

I’ve continued to read everything in front of me for years never really paying attention to the name of the author, the series or anything. That’s weird, right? I’d grab anything or pick anything on Audible and read it. A book a day sometimes. Then I would go on hiatus and not read a thing. Nothing sung to me until I read Koontz’s snappy dialogue in—well, heck—I don’t remember the name of the book. Seems like it had a killer clown in it. And time was a big factor. I don’t recognize the cover when I look it up on Amazon. But the dialogue made me pay attention. I started to notice sentence structure and his phrasing. A tempo.

Then, Cormac McCarthy made me weep. I wanted to give up. Who could write like that? I’ve read Blood Meridian half a dozen times, Suttree a few half dozen more. I couldn’t read anything else after finding McCarthy for a while—nothing compares.

Hugh Howie captivated me with his books recently. I try to read from new authors now and leave them reviews. I understand how much that means. You sit there and look at the printed book that took so long to birth and wonder, “What did the reader think?”

JRR: The Dean Koontz book is Life Expectancy:  I listened to the audiobook of that one a few years ago. That was my first Koontz novel!!  Now, what inspires you to write?

A need. If I don’t have a story or character or chapter to chew on in the back of my head during the day I get very frustrated.

JRR: What does your writing process consist of? Do you research or just ‘go with the flow’, Handwrite vs type, music or no music?

I do a lot of research, and love that part. Then I outline the main points and what the characters are going to do. However, new characters just show up sometimes and they are the most fun – because I’m not sure what they will do.

I type very fast, no one would want to see my handwriting. Though I’ve employed various methods to help keep timelines straight: sketching them out on the back of a roll of wrapping paper. That way I could roll it up and take it with me. That’s mostly the key – I don’t have a set process. I can sit down and write anywhere. Anytime. Got a free moment? Let’s take a look at those pages and twiddle with this scene. So, I carry a backpack with my battered laptop with me at all times. I use Dropbox so that there is a backup not local to the machine so I have little risk of losing work should the machine see damage.

My favorite place to write is on long, international plane rides or on my back porch over looking the valley; both places that I am so very fortunate to be able to frequent upon occasion.

JRR:  What made you choose to write this type of novel? Did you use your background in caving to help you write Absolute Darkness?

Brandy and Susan are characters I created for a murder mystery. They were hot on the case solving a serial killer who left his clues in very unusual places. I was deep into the first rewrite when I moved to Tennessee and found caving. In the murder mystery, “Running in Place”, I came up with various ways to kill the serial killer: death by alligator (a tip of the hat to my Florida upbringing), death by flaming guano in a cave (I had just found caving and found that guano, bat poo, was combustible), or death by drowning (a true fear of mine).

I paused the rewrites on that book and asked the question, “What if these ladies were cavers?”

So, I imagined the cave they would crawl in. Sitting in that cave was a character I had never met before. Alexander. He could see all of time. He was on the brink of madness. When Brandy and Susan crawled into his cave in the first three pages of the book—Alexander fell in love with Brandy. I, in turn, was completely intrigued by him. However, I did not want to write a love interest story. I stopped writing.

Now, having been at the typewriter since the age of eight—I knew that the writing muse would not be denied. She is demanding and I would find my mind slipping back to imagine how Alexander came to be. I wanted to explore his world more.

But I did not want to write a romance.

Stalled, I turned to research, since I do not read romance. (I had avoided those books on my mother’s bookshelf.) I started reading all kinds of books that my friends recommended including “The Outlander” and a romance/vampire series that a neighbor loaned to me—all of which caused me to sincerely blush. It was a struggle and I picked a tone for the romance portions that I felt were heartfelt and true but not too steamy. Once I figured out that portion I returned to writing the book and scavenged scenes from “Running in Place” for this new book “Absolute Darkness”.

My love of caving permeated throughout the book and I hoped to capture the world for the casual reader.

JRR: What is your favorite cave you have been to? Where would you recommend someone to visit if they are interested in caving/spelunking? I did a small bit of caving/ spelunking when I was in girl scouts many years ago. It was so much fun! There is something just fascinating about it.

Ah. There’s a cave that is special to me but I can’t name it as it is a privately owned cave and a closed one. It’s special because I mapped it and know every single rock it holds, except for the two places I did not crawl through and my buddy Mark can’t sleep at night because there is probably more cave to be found down that narrow crack which takes on water.

There are a lot of great places that are accessible including commercial caves too where there are installed lights and guides to help explain the surroundings. That’s actually what got me into caving. I found a public assessable cave listed in a hiking guide and took the family on a walkabout to find this cave. I stood in the gaping maw of an opening and peered into the darkness. Bats hung from the ceiling. A small stream flowed out of the wide opening. And—I had no clue what I was looking at. What was safe? Where did it go? I was hooked and had to learn more. I looked up a grotto via http://caves.org, read books, introduced myself to the grotto, and those wonderful people kindly introduced me to this new world. It is dangerous, even tourist caves. You have to go in educated and have a guide.

JRR: Did you base Brandy and Alexander off anyone you know?

Not really. Some small aspects from friends are attributed to these characters. The perfect shoes that Susan wears are from a good librarian friend of mine. The beer muse is based very much on a fellow from my grotto and with his permission I used his name. Mark, my caving buddy, in my head played the part of Mark in the book and with his permission I used his name for the character. I didn’t create that character to resemble Mark though – or I would have added in a love for McGriddles. Alexander. He’s a mystery to me. He just appeared as if sliding into my time from somewhere else.

JRR: If you could have dinner with three people(living or dead) who would they be and why?

My parents and my younger self (she needs a talking to).

JRR: Which book have you always meant to get around to reading, but still not read?

I’d like to read Blood Meridian again in print and savour the punctuation or lack there of. There are some classics I haven’t read that I’d like to also study.

JRR: What’s the best advice you have ever received?

It wasn’t advice so much as it was encouragement to be creative.

My parents, my husband and many of my friends are the most supportive people ever. Or maybe they just indulge me. Growing up if I had a passion I was encouraged to follow it. I have continued to work at places that support passions and creativity. The people who stay with me as close friends are crazy passionate about their nerdy thing and I love that in people.

My advice to anyone – do the thing you want to do and be prepared to suck at it. That’s part of the process. Embrace it and keep going. You will get better. Some days you will suck again. Pick yourself up and keep going. Other days you will excel. Love the journey.

JRR: Is there anything else you would like to share?

Thank you so much for the opportunity! I hope everyone enjoys the book. Follow me at http://coffeediem.wordpress.com for when the next book comes out! Gosh, I need to get writing…..

JRR: Thank you for your time with this interview!


The #FORLINEARS puzzle: Please check out the virtual blog tour here and you might find some embedded fun in the imagery.
In fact, I dare you. Can you find the hidden puzzles that lead to an autographed book give away? First one to figure it out wins an autographed book.


About the Author:

Tina O’Hailey (author of animation text books “Rig it Right” and “Hybrid Animation”, professor in animation, visual effects and game programming, caver and occasional mapper of grim, wet, twisty caves—if she owes a friend a favor or loses a bet—whose passion is to be secluded on a mountain and to write whilst surrounded by small, furry dogs and hot coffee) was struck by lightning as a baby.

Absolute Darkness: Virtual Blog Tour: June 28 – July 4: https://www.rachelsrandomresources.com/absolute-darkness

Contact Tina:
Website
Twitter @tohailey
Absolute Darkness Facebook

 

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Blog Tour: Cuttin’ Heads: A Conversation with D.A. Watson

Today I am one of the stops on the blog tour for Cuttin’ Heads by D.A. Watson! I interviewed him and there is also a giveaway for a signed copy!

Book Description:

Aldo Evans is a desperate man. Fired from his job and deeply in debt, he struggles to balance a broken family life with his passion for music.

Luce Figura is a troubled woman. A rhythmic perfectionist, she is haunted by childhood trauma and scorned by her religiously devout mother.

Ross McArthur is a wiseass. Orphaned as an infant and raised by the state, his interests include game shows, home-grown weed, occasional violence and the bass guitar.

They are Public Alibi. A rock n’ roll band going nowhere fast.

When the sharp-suited, smooth talking producer Gappa Bale offers them a once in a lifetime chance to make their dreams come true, they are caught up in a maelstrom of fame, obsession, music and murder.

Soon, Aldo, Luce and Ross must ask themselves: is it really better to burn out than to fade away?


Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK


JRR (Jessica’s Reading Room): Tell us a little about yourself.

Howdy. My name’s Dave, I’m 41, I live in the Inverclyde area in West Central Scotland, and I’ve been doing this writing thing seriously for around six years. When not scribbling, I’m probably reading, attempting maverick DIY and gardening projects, playing Minecraft with my seven year old son or teaching the guitar.

JRR: Did you always want to become an author?

Nope. I toyed with the idea for about ten years while writing the first draft of my first novel, In the Devil’s Name, but it was more a fantasy than an actual ambition. Starting that first novel in 2002 was more like a part time experiment to see if I could write a book, and I would dip into it every now and again, just doing a little bit at a time, sometimes going months or even years between writing sessions. It wasn’t until I posted a few chapters online and people reacted well to it that I started to think I might actually have written something other folks would want to read. That was when I gave what I had, which was only about half of a first draft, to Louise Welsh, who was then the Writer in Residence at the University of Glasgow where I was doing a music and digital media degree with the plan of becoming a teacher. When Louise told me she thought I had something there, and encouraged me to finish the novel, that’s when I really started getting serious, so much so I self-published the first edition of In the Devil’s Name, and surprised and delighted by the good reviews it received, wrote my second novel The Wolves of Langabhat. When I managed to land a literary agent and publisher on the back of that book, weighed against my rather mediocre marks at uni, it became clear what I was better at. So I abandoned the plans to go into education and did my masters degree in Creative Writing instead.

JRR:  And look where you are now!  Who was the most influential author you read when you were growing up? Did his/her writings influence you to want to become an author?

Well I remember reading Killer Crabs by Guy N Smith when I was about thirteen and thinking it was a work of unparalleled literary genius. That, and The Howling III by Gary Brandner were the first books that got me into horror. For my sixteenth birthday, I got a Dean Koontz omnibus which included Lightning, The Bad Place and Midnight. After that, obsessed, I spent the next few years going through the Koontz back catalogue, and also got really into writers like Richard Laymon, Stephen King, Stephen Laws, James Herbert, Mark Morris, Graham Masterton and Joe Donnelly, who I was delighted to find lived on the other side of the river Clyde from me, and based his novels in the area. When I was in my twenties, I found an old copy of Guy N Smith’s Cannibals in a charity shop, and while it was entertaining enough, set in Scotland and gloriously disgusting, compared to some of the other authors I’d discovered since my thirteen year old self thought Killer Crabs was the best book ever published, I thought the writing wasn’t that great, and was arrogant enough to think I could do better, so Cannibals is the book that first gave the idea to try it myself. Stephen King’s On Writing was also a huge kick in the arse in terms of motivation to pick up a pen.

 JRR:  Who is your favorite author as an adult? Who inspires you?

If I had to pick one favourite, it has to be the totally unoriginal choice of Stephen King. Seriously, give me the new King book, a good milkshake and a well made cheeseburger and I literally couldn’t be more content. In terms of inspiration, a couple of my go-to guys at the moment are Adam Nevill, Joe R Lansdale, Robert McCammon, Glen Duncan and Justin Cronin. Guys that can pen stories that consume you, that play with your emotions, and can make you pause every once in a while, just to savour how good and tight the prose is. Those are the kinds of writers I aspire to.

JRR: I enjoy King as well!  I plan on listening to his newest on audio soon.  What inspires you to write?

Most of the things I write are based on real life experiences, but with a “what if” scenario thrown in. This goes for things I’ve experienced personally, and from existing folklore, myths and legends which is where I get a lot of my ideas.

JRR:  What does your writing process consist of?  (Do you research or just ‘go with the flow’, Handwrite vs typing, music or no music?)

Once I have a basic idea, I’ll do a bit of background research into the subject matter if I need to, just to get a feel for it, then I’ll just dive in and see where the idea goes. I’ll do more research as the story demands it. If I’m stuck, I’ll go back and do some editing, and I do find turning to my notebook and sketching out handwritten ideas helps to give my brain a jump start. I know a lot of writers like to have loud music on to block out everything else, but I’ve tried this method and for me it becomes a distraction. Maybe that’s because other than writing, music is my other big love, and I tend to analyse it, sing along and play air instruments when I’ve got tunes on.

JRR: What made you choose Horror to write? Do you have a favorite Horror novel/author/movie?

I’ve just always been drawn to that side of storytelling, probably because I was exposed to so much of it as a kid. I grew up in the eighties with a grandfather who loved telling ghost stories, and two older brothers who were really into horror movies, so I saw and heard all sorts of messed up things at a very early age. A couple of memorable films that I saw by the time I was seven would be The Exorcist, Nightmare on Elm Street, Hellraiser, The Howling, and the one that’s still my favourite movie of all time, An American Werewolf in London. Yeah, I was traumatised, had nightmares, etc etc, but it all worked out okay in the end…

JRR:  I also grew up in the 80s. I have never seen the Nightmare movies.(I know: shocker!) My husband is planning on getting me to watch it soon. I never saw The Exorcist until college

Where did you get the idea for Cuttin’ Heads? Did you base the main characters off anyone you know?

Cutttin’ Heads is basically my homage to all my favourite music. It’s based on a mix of my own experiences of being in a band, and takes a lot of inspiration from the myths and legends of rock n roll. And yeah, a lot of people who I’ve been in bands with over the years may find a very slightly altered version of themselves in the story.

JRR: If you could have dinner with three people (living or dead) who would they be and why?

Jimi Hendrix, Mitch Mitchell and Noel Redding, the original lineup of The Jimi Hendrix Experience, so I could hear some awesome road stories, then kick back to my own private gig.

JRR:  Great list!  Which book have you always meant to get around to reading, but still not read?

Well last year I bought the complete collection of Tarzan novels by Edgar Rice Burroughs for 99p in the Kindle store. I’m about halfway through those, and plan to finish the entire collection someday.

JRR:  What’s the best advice you have ever received?

I didn’t receive it personally, but I always liked the Jack London quote, “You can’t wait for inspiration. You have to go after it with a club.”

JRR: Great quote!  Thank you for your time with this interview!


About the Author:

Prizewinning author D.A. Watson spent several years working in bars, restaurants and call centres before going back to university with the half-arsed plan of becoming a music teacher. Halfway through his degree at the University of Glasgow, he discovered he was actually better at writing, and unleashed his debut novel, In the Devil’s Name, on an unsuspecting public in the summer of 2012. Plans of a career in education left firmly in the dust, he later gained his masters degree in Creative Writing from the University of Stirling.

He has since published two more novels, The Wolves of Langabhat and Cuttin’ Heads, a handful of non-fiction pieces, several short stories including Durty Diana, which was nominated for a Pushcart Prize in 2016, and the Burns parody Tam O’ Shatner, which in 2017 came runner up in the Dunedin Robert Burns Poetry Competition, and was a competition winner at the Falkirk Storytelling Festival.

He lives with his family in Western Scotland.

“The Christoper Brookmyre of horror. Readers will be very very afraid.”  – Louise Welsh, bestselling author of the Plague Times trilogy

Contact D.A.:
Twitter  @davewatsonbooks
Goodreads
Facebook


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