As we gear up for the exciting launch of Book 1 Part 1 of The Embers of Enchantment series we take the opportunity to really get to know the author in this interview
What attracted you to start writing your first book?
This is a very easy question for me, as I actually remember the exact moment that this story ignited in my imagination. I was sat on Mumbles Hill enjoying the sunshine near the Hill’s trig point. And as I sat looking at it and the wind was blowing through my hair I fell into a daydream, (as is a very common occurrence with me) and imagined how great the mumbles hill would be to teach a dragon to fly. I can’t remember how long I sat there for, but I could just start to see the world that is The Embers of Enchantment appear before my very eyes. I stood and looked down at mumbles, Oystermouth Castle, the bay and Swansea city in the distance.
I’ve daydreamed many times before, but this particular daydream just never seemed to end. I didn’t have my phone or pen and paper on me, so I remember setting off home as I just knew I had to start writing it down.
I couldn’t think of anything else for days. Everywhere I looked the world around me just didn’t seem to be the same. Characters just fell into place and it felt so natural to tell the story.
The story is still growing within my mind everyday. Now this world, these characters and the challenges they have ahead of them, they actually feel like family and I’m on that journey with them. A journey I welcome everyone to embark on with me.
I just love imagination! It’s such a beautiful and wonderful gift every single person is blessed with.
Who do you think will enjoy The Embers of Enchantment?
The Embers of Enchantment although is aimed at children 8 and above, it’s really a story and adventure for all ages. After all, we’re all children at heart, and when it comes to imagination, there is no age restrictions.
Due to the dark and somewhat scary times that lies ahead, I wouldn’t recommend the adventure for children below Y5 unless read by an adult first. Believe me, even I’ve had nightmare’s! But even nightmares are just another form of your own scary adventures created by your own amazing imaginations.
Why did you choose Mumbles, Swansea as the setting for the series?
As I’ve mentioned above, I didn’t really ‘choose’ to set it in Mumbles. It actually choose me. And… Who’s to say that Mumbles is where the series stays? I mean, it might, but I’ll just leave you with that to ponder on!
Which character in the book do you think you’re most like?
That I’m most like? Gosh! Well, I think every one of them is some how a part of me and my personality. But if I really do have to be specific, I would say Dylan. He’s a boy that shows the world you really don’t need riches, or come from a humble background to achieve the most amazing things. And he has the most amazing friend in the world too. I can’t imagine anyone who, after reading part one, wouldn’t want a Dragon as their best friend!
I don’t know about ‘most’ like. But Dylan is certainly the biggest part of me, that I feel the closest too.
What do you look for in a book?
Most importantly – transportation. The ability to take me to that world and have me not want to be anywhere else until I know the whole story. Also to not just be an observer, to really feel apart of the adventure. Everything that happens in The Embers of Enchantment affects all of us.
It’s also important to be relatable. We all need to feel connected to the characters, and even though my book isn’t even set in the same era of time, it doesn’t matter, my job is to give my readers their own personal time machine. The best book’s are the ones that take you the furthest away from the crazy world of reality.
If you had to pick one author you love to read most who would it be and why?
I would have to say Enid Blyton. She transported me away for most of my childhood. I couldn’t get enough of reading her adventures. She expanded my creative mind and gave me memories that I will remember forever. Even now I’m a ‘grown-up’ I could happily pick up the Faraway Tree adventures and in just a few pages, I’m back to her world and reluctant to return. She inspired me, and my dream is to inspire others.
How would you describe your writing style?
I like to really set the scene in my books, but also allow for my readers to use their own imaginations as much as possible. I especially love hearing readers own versions of what certain characters actually look like.
To answer the question, if I had to describe my writing in three words, I personally would use, picturesque , articulate and imaginative.
When will Part 2 be released? Has it already been written?
Part 2, 3 and 4 have been written! And part 2 is set for release around November 2016.
Have you written all the books in the series yet? Where are you up to?
I know where the story is going next. Book 1 has been written and I honestly can not WAIT to begin book 2. It’s been nagging at my imagination continuously. I also feel as if my character’s need to know what’s going to happen next too, as if they are waiting anxiously for the next part of their adventure. Only I know the reason why they’re anxious though, but I can tell you, if it was you, you would be too. This will make sense after you’ve read part 4.
How involved are you in the artwork process? Do you think it’s important for the author to have their input in this?
It has taken three months to get the artwork just right. There has been a lot of work involved getting all the art work just how I imagined, but my illustrator (David Platt) is such an amazing and talented man. I am honestly so lucky to have found him.
I personally do think it’s very important. It has been for me at least. As I’ve mentioned, the characters now feel like family, and I wanted them to look as they’re meant too.