I am delighted that FAITH MORTIMER is joining me on my blog today. Faith's latest book - A Brutal Trade - is published by Topsails Charter today (12 June 2015).
So Faith, what inspired you to write a book in the first place?
Firstly, may I thank you for inviting me onto your blog today? I feel honoured and I appreciate being asked. I’ve always played around with words. From a young age I wrote stories and little plays, which I forced my younger sisters to listen to. I started a couple of novels in my teens and twenties – but the time wasn’t right. Finally, when the kids were at Uni, my business was almost running itself, and I’d completed a science degree, I realised that the time was right to pen that first novel!
Where do your ideas come from?
Anywhere and everywhere. I can watch a play/film or read a book and my mind goes off at a tangent. I unashamedly eavesdrop on interesting conversations and a few choice words or subject will spark an idea and I have to get it written down.
Have your personal experiences influenced your writing? And if so, how?
Oh lots! I am a registered qualified nurse, so this comes in handy for medical experience and understanding human psyche. I’ve always enjoyed sports: running, skiing, walking and I’m a qualified Yacht Master – I’ve incorporated ideas and examples of experiences into lots of my books. After a change in direction from nursing, I’ve run various businesses and this has helped when choosing a ‘job’ for characters. Sitting for a degree later in life gave me confidence in getting to grips with starting my first novel.
Easy to read, partly descriptive so readers visualise the scenes.
Do you have any strange writing habits?
Not that I can think of.
You write books that fit into a range of genres, from psychological thrillers and crime/mystery novels to romantic fiction. Is it easy to switch between them?
So far, yes! I get really involved in the thrillers and crime/mystery novels; partaking in lots of interesting research. Keeping track of clues/time/feasibility of a plot can be hard and has my head frequently in a spin. After a few novels like this I find writing romance completely different. No less research is conducted, but because the books are very different it acts as a buffer - almost like a holiday, and I do enjoy it. My romance are not chick-lit though – more edgy women’s literature with a romantic interest.
Do you plot out the whole book before you start or just start writing and see where it leads you?
I usually have a basic idea and outline before I begin writing. As I get further into the main part of the story, small sub-plots begin to develop. Often these can enrich the story but I only allow them to continue if I feel they add to the overall plot. They’re not padding, but flesh out characters and their lives which are important to the main theme.
What do you consider to be the hardest part of your writing?
Writing the first chapter. I repeatedly write the first few pages and then at some later stage go back and rewrite the whole scene. I think it’s because my characters come properly to life further into the book and getting started they’re still shadowy figures. Once I’ve finished I go through the script a dozen times, adding and deleting sentences which add nothing to a good plot.
Do you read? If so, who are your favourite authors?
Yes, of course! That question is difficult though as I change my favourite authors yearly. I love good female crime writers, P D James for one, M M Kaye for adventure, James Michener for history. Ooops I think they’re all deceased! Seriously I enjoy contemporary authors too, but there are too many to mention and I don’t want to upset anyone by leaving them off the list. We’re so lucky as we’re spoilt for choice these days!
If you were writing a book about your life, what would be the title?
This is a tricky one as there are lots of titles I could use, but something along the lines of: 'No Such Word as Can't.' I always remember my grandmother who was a 'no-nonsense' sort of lady, chiding me when I was small if I moaned that I couldn't do something. I think life is what you make of it. There's no point saying you can't do something if you haven't bothered to get up and try. This applies to everything you meet head on - grasp life with both hands, use it well and hopefully you'll find a way to meet at least part of your dreams.
What advice do you have for aspiring writers?
Never give up. No matter if you believe the last 2000 words you wrote are rubbish – leave them for 24 hours and then go back and read through. A few changes can make a world of difference. Also, I believe authors today hold their destiny in their own hands. It is you who decides whether you want to go it alone as an independent author or pursue a publisher. Stick to your dreams and ideals, work hard and if you’re determined then you can make a living from writing. Finally, don’t be afraid to ask for help. There are hundreds of lovely authors who are willing to give you a few pointers – remember they’ve been there before.
And lastly, why should people read A Brutal Trade?
Because it’s a darn good read(!) Seriously the theme of my latest novel is close to my heart. Human trafficking is rife and found in almost every country worldwide. 10 Countries account for 76% of the total 30 million estimates. Human trafficking is one of the fastest growing crimes in the world and is the world’s second largest criminal enterprise, after drugs. (2013 Global Slavery Index). This I find appalling in today’s so called modern world. My new book, A Brutal Trade, covers the basics of trafficking and the illegal sale of human body parts. The subject matter is grim, but I’ve done my best not to dwell too much on the graphic side of things. I’ve built a story round the topic – one with an ending which readers will enjoy and agree with. I plan to donate 20% of the royalties from the sale of this book to two leading anti-trafficking charities.
About Faith Mortimer
Faith is a British author dividing her time between Hampshire (UK) and Cyprus. Since 2005, she has been fortunate enough to turn her hobby of writing into a career. During childhood, Faith dreamt of writing novels that readers would love, and she spent many hours writing short stories that she subsequently read to her younger sisters (probably under pressure!). She was born in Manchester, England, and educated in Singapore, Malaya and Hampshire, England.
Find Faith Mortimer on her official Facebook page and follow Faith on Twitter - @FaithMortimer
A Brutal Trade
Published by Topsails Charter (12 June 2015)
Even on a small island, the darkest secrets can't stay buried forever…
It began like any normal day in Cyprus… except it wasn't… the body of a woman brutally murdered and discovered in a shallow grave changes all that.
It is only days later when amateur sleuth, Diana Rivers, and old flame, Chief Superintendent Adam Lovell, discover a second female victim… only this time the discovery is even more chilling and shocks the island inhabitants.
Joining forces with local policeman, Sergeant Yiannis Loukiades, the three embark on a journey that takes them on the fringes of humanity. Disturbing secrets are unearthed. They are on the hunt for killers who will stop at nothing in their hunt for one vital woman.
As the bodies mount up, the detectives ask themselves one question. What is the reason for the women's deaths and their horrific mutilations?
With the investigation quickly gathering momentum, Diana finds herself exposed to great danger… in the sighs of a lethal individual who'll put a stop to her meddling. Each move could be deadly… vicious in its outcome… can the team bring a halt to this brutal trade?
Click here to find A Brutal Trade on Amazon UK.
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