Hello, welcome to part two of my author Q&A, home to all the more unusual questions I was asked via social media. Today is all about… me! We shall be doing this section rapid-fire style. Where do you peeps get your questions?
Click here for Part 1, all about the upcoming Luminous Colours of Dusk
1) What is the weirdest thing you have Googled?
Tough choice – What does a mercenary cost? How long does it take to strangle someone? How long does a severed hand stay warm? Which switchblade fits in a bra? You know, standard fare.
2) Name something you learned at school
When you’re 17 and your math teacher is 24, and he wants to hang out with you in the photocopy room, it’s not to help out with your recipe book pages.
3) What will your cemetery headstone say?
I REGRET NOTHING! (Just kidding, I don’t want a headstone – scatter me!)
4) How do you react to a bad review of one of your books?
Sulking, pyjamas, The Borgias and hot chocolate.
5) Do you make your bed?
6) Do you get road rage?
Oh God, yes. Five minutes in the car and I’m flipping someone off.
7) What is the toughest thing to write?
Um… I don’t know if anything has been tough, but I remember reading back chapter 14 of Vengeance in the Valencian Water, and thinking, ‘no one should have ideas like this’. It is outside the boundaries of normal, healthy thoughts.
8) Is there something you would refuse to write about?
I have yet to come across an issue I can’t broach, but obviously rape and murder of children will never be a subject of mine.
9) What is the strangest thing that has been said to you by a reader?
I know what flavour of ice cream you would be. (He confessed to being naked when he messaged me)
10) What is the biggest lie you have told?
Sure, I can speak Portuguese!
11) Do you have a special skill?
I have an excellent memory. It irritates the crap out of my husband.
12) Do you dream?
I dream very, very vividly, which I have been able to use in writing. Just last night, I was trapped as a victim of human trafficking in the desert.
13) Have you ever gotten into a fight?
Ahhh… verbally – yes, that happens very regularly, online and in real life. Physically, I have only ever slugged a few people, the last time was when I punched a guy in the supermarket car-park when he tried to force me into his car.
14) Do you drink or smoke?
Drinking – only in Spain. At home I am a teetotal. Smoking – gross!
15) How do you come up with book titles?
They come to me at random. All of the Canna series’ titles are from one piece in Violent Daylight – “Night wants to forget the sun, but is defeated every morning. It’s violent, the way daylight overpowers the night. But at least we get the luminous colours of dusk each evening.” If you read the books they would make more sense. As for my Spain series, I wanted to make sure Valencia was in each title, since I love the city so much.
16) What holiday location would you most like to visit?
The Alps in southern France and the Pyrenees, I have never been and want to visit all the best mountain climbs for cycling.
17) What has been the toughest criticism and best compliment given to your writing?
Someone said that the Canna series brought them back to reading again. Someone else said my characters are boring and unlikable. Each is only an opinion, sometimes compliments can sound fake, sometimes criticism sounds like trolling. It can be hard to decide on what to believe.
18) Do you get twitter trolls?
Hell yes! Mostly guys who take offence to my feminist posts (Seriously? You hate equality?) In saying that, there’s plenty of vicious/jealous/stupid women out there too. A few months ago, a friend (real life) had a problem with her husband and strippers (won’t go into details for privacy), and I tweeted that I don’t think strippers are acceptable ever, regardless of other’s opinions. Some woman tweeted that her celebrity crush doesn’t like strippers and I need to shut the fuck up. How the hell she came to that conclusion…. talk about lala land. On the upside, a few of my followers agreed with her, so hello, block function! That cleared out some tripe. There are always trolls about, and it doesn’t annoy me much. Block, block, block.
19) Which is harder to write – sex or violence?
Neither. Give me a wedding or heartfelt romantic plea and I’m stumped. I’ll take a murder or secret affair any day.
20) Do you believe in God?
21) Do you still think you’re a Spain fraud?
Not so much anymore. After I wrote Why Spain? many people denied my fraudster claim. I haven’t been writing about Spain much this year, which probably helps my fraudster feelings. I start a new Spain novel in two weeks; that might change my feelings again.
22) Have you ever done anything you are ashamed of?
I damaged a friend’s car in Buñol, outside Valencia, and lied about it.
23) Are you a good holiday companion?
Ask my husband about the time we were in Seville, it was 46 degrees and we were lost.
24) Do you have a day job as well?
Yes, though the summer is much busier than the winter. Sailing classes, swimming lessons, sports, field trips, reading, spelling, whatever my children’s school needs.
25) Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I have no idea, and I love that fact. I don’t know who I will be in 10 years.
Phew! The next post is back to my writing, all about the books I have written (besides Luminous Colours of Dusk), and what is coming next.
Click here for PART 1: ‘Luminous Colours of Dusk’ Author Q+A and look out for an upcoming free book offer coming soon!