Tell us about yourself and how many books you have written.
I grew up in Scotland, live in South Korea, and have two published young adult fantasy books. They are the first two in The Aronia Series, and I am working on the third and final book now. The series follows Abigail Crumble, a young bookworm who made the mistake of wishing on the stars without realising they are cursed.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
The Faelti is the follow up to The Watcher of the Night Sky. The title pronunciation is “FAIL-TEE”, and is so named because of a race of creatures in my universe. It is translated in the language of the fae to mean, the corrupted ones. Many things affected the plot. I can say Asia has had a large part to play in that as well as Scotland.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
I’m not sure I can call my habits unusual. I can’t write in cafes or busy places because I get too distracted by the people and noise. I need to be in my home office, locked away from the world. I always have a notebook with me when I am out, in case I get some sudden inspiration, and I am an avid user of Google Notes.
What authors, or books have influenced you?
R. L. Stine probably is the reason I started reading so much when I was young. I was obsessed with S. E. Hinton’s The Outsiders as a teenager. I went through a thriller phase, and Mario Puzo phase before getting into fantasy. Neil Gaiman, J. K. Rowling, The Princess Bride by William Goldman, and Terry Pratchett are probably the greatest contributors.
What are you working on now?
The third installment of The Aronia Series. It’s called Aaravale but that’s all I’m telling you.
What is your best method or website when it comes to promoting your books?
I can list the ones that are not effective… but I will be nice 😀 I’d say Freebooksy is a great one for posting promotions. I stay active on social networks. Twitter and Goodreads are great for contacting bloggers and authors. Book bub is the best but it’s difficult to get featured on.
Do you have any advice for new authors?
Don’t rush to get your book out there. Get feedback from beta readers, get it edited, get the cover made professionally (if publishing indie-style). Don’t lose heart if you keep getting rejected by agents or publishers. That’s just the way it is.
What is the best advice you have ever heard?
Stephen King has some good advice on writing. I’d recommend listening to what he has to say.
What are you reading now?
The Golem and the Jinni by Helene Wecker. She is talented! It’s been a long time since I found a book that caught me. I was getting so tired of reading the same thing, noticing the same formula in new books. This book has helped me get out of my reader’s slump.
What’s next for you as a writer?
When I went to Japan last year, I got this sudden idea while touring Osaka castle. I want to work on that.
If you were going to be stranded on a desert island and allowed to take 3 or 4 books with you what books would you bring?
This question is so silly. Why would I be allowed to take books? That suggests I know I am going to be stranded. Therefore I would take some kind of survival book, The Bible, some kind of Scouts guidebook, and an empty notebook (pen attached).