Category Archives: Author Interviews

The Long Road Home – Interview

Quote of the Day: “Every secret of a writer’s soul, every experience of his life, every quality of his mind, is written large in his works.” Virginia Woolf

Carolyn Bowen Author (31)

Today I want to share the conversation I had with Jason E. Foss, producer of ‘A Dreamer’s Blog’ and the empowered-individuals.blogspot.

Jason wanted to know about my writing process specifically relating to my mystery thriller, The Long Road Home.

I hope you’ll enjoy the light banter and the behind the scenes writing of this novel and the up-to-date news about my upcoming new mystery.

Follow ‘A Dreamer’s Blog’ for interesting in-depth coverage of the writing life from your favorite authors.

Thank you, Jason, for the opportunity to share with your readers. This interview will be remembered as one of my favorite author experiences.  Carolyn Bowen

Where to buy The Long Road Home

The Long Road Home is available at your favorite bookstores!

Download and Read FREE with Amazon Kindle Unlimited!

Thank you for following my blog and connecting on social media. I appreciate your support. Carolyn M. Bowen

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Interview with Author Paul Anthony

Interview with UK Author Paul Anthony

Interview with Author Paul Anthony, The Writing Life
Photo Credit: Pixabay

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”  – Maya Angelou, I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

Today we are chatting with Paul Anthony about his background, writing life, and latest titles. Get ready to be educated and entertained by one of the best writers of our time.         

Author Paul Anthony, Interview with Paul Anthony
Author Paul Anthony

Featured Book Title: Septimus 

Genre: Historical Fiction / Thriller

Interview Questions:

Hello, thank you for agreeing to this interview.

  • Tell us a little about yourself and your background?

Answer:  I’m a retired police officer living in the Lake District, England. It’s one of the most beautiful places in the UK to live. We are a mile from Hadrian’s Roman Wall, ten miles from the Scottish border, and about twenty miles from Lake Ullswater. My wife is a retired nurse and we have three children and six grandchildren. A former counter-terrorism detective, I specialize in crime thrillers, true crime, espionage and anthologies for various charities. I’ve been published by a vanity publisher and a commissioning traditional publisher, but I much prefer the self-publishing path. I describe myself as an independent publisher responsible for editing, book covers, marketing, and everything else that goes with the book business. I have absolutely no desire to look for a traditional publisher and often wonder why so-called ‘indie writers’ spend endless hours looking for a publisher. It’s quite possible to achieve tremendous goals without help from these big companies.

  • Discuss your newest book.

Answer: My latest novel is entitled ‘Septimus’ and it is a welcome departure from my usual foray into crime genres. Having written two detective series I decided to take a break, refresh the mind, and produce something entirely different. Septimus is about the Roman invasion of the Lake District, a man called Hallin who stands in the way of the invasion, and a subsequent incursion into Caledonia (Scotland) where the Romans never really manage to succeed. More importantly, it’s about the characters in the book and how they interact with each other in times of war and peace. Hallin is the leader of a tribe and trades his skill with the Romans in order to try and forge a peace between them. This is quite a complex thing to try and achieve given a constant background of jealousy, treachery, betrayal, and murder as individuals within their own peer groups try to overcome each other and increase their personal power base. Some years back I wrote the history of the family name and learned more about my great uncle. His name was Septimus too. He was one of the first recorded white men to cross the River Sioux complex into Indian country. He was a scout for the US Cavalry and lived in what is now called South Dakota. Readers of Septimus will soon see how my great uncle’s life story inspired ‘Septimus’ and what drove me to write the novel.

  • Do you recall how your interest in writing originated?

Answer: I suspect it all began with reading. As a youngster, I read books written by Enid Blyton. A famous UK writer, she wrote children’s adventure books featuring the ‘famous five’ and the ‘secret seven’. These stories took you into the adventurous mind of a child and, somewhere inside there, it sticks. When you come out the other end, you want to be a writer yourself because inside you think – I wonder if I could write stories too?

  • What are your current projects?

Answer: I’m currently writing the next Boyd crime thriller. Boyd is a Cumbrian detective who gets posted into the nation’s Special Crime Unit. Here, he works with elite officers on major crime, serial homicide, terrorism, espionage, and all things internationally evil. These books have proved very popular over the years and have an excellent following here in the UK. Each one is a ‘stand-alone’.

  • What books have most influenced your life?

Answer: It’s not so much the books as the authors. My favorite authors are Gerald Seymour, Jack Higgins, Clive Cussler, and Terence Strong. They are thriller writers. Comparatively, you’ll often see me deep inside a non-fiction book studying another language, a religion, a political or economic doctrine, a biography, or a sports manual.

  • What inspired you to write your first book?

Answer: I was studying for a degree and writing assignments at 4 am every Sunday morning. When I finished the degree, my wife suggested I continued and inspired me to write my first novel. She told me I had a book deep inside me waiting to get out. I followed her advice and eventually published The Fragile Peace. Since then, I’ve written over 20 novels in the various crime genres but I tend not to write at 4 am on a Sunday morning anymore.

  • Is there a message in your novel that you want readers to grasp?

Answer:  All my novels carry a message of some kind and that is not at all unusual. Crime writers generally promote good over evil and readers find themselves taking sides with the various characters that an author has written about. They are not that different from romance novels because readers find themselves drawn inside a good book supporting a character (or not) and wanting to know what happens next’. I try to entertain readers whilst also enlightening and informing wherever possible. My novel, White Eagle, for example, offers an explanation as to how terrorism can be avoided. Sound crazy and unlikely? Not if you turned the clock back to the end of various wars and incursions and rewrote the so-called peace agreements. (In some cases there are no peace agreements, hence we have continuing conflict) Terrorism, if you want to focus on that for a moment, is generally rooted in religion and sovereignty. Delivering a thought-provoking message at the same time as delivering a good read is not a bad thing to do.

  • What is the hardest thing about writing?

Answer: Constantly developing new plots that haven’t been used before whilst simultaneously writing at a pace that will keep the reader held and enthusiastic about the book they are reading.

  • What was the hardest thing about writing your latest book?

Answer: Finding the time. I’m retired and enjoying life yet I still don’t have enough hours in the day.

  • What is the easiest thing about writing?

Answer: I’ve always looked upon my writing career as a hobby. Finding quality time to do something you enjoy is quite easy. You just move the goalposts so that you can do what you do best.

  • What book are you reading now?

Answer: I’ve just finished ‘Blue’ by John Sutherland. It’s an autobiography written by a senior police officer here in the UK and it’s an excellent read.

  • What does your writing process look like?

Answer: I write when it suits me and when the plot is ready to go down on paper. Most of the time I form a plot in my head, sit and make notes, draft it out into chapters and then – when I’m ready – I sit down and put it all together properly. It can take anything from three to nine months for me to write a book that I’m more than happy with.

  • What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

Answer: Enjoy time with our family mainly – but I enjoy the gym and weightlifting, learning to speak Spanish, playing a guitar, and ballroom dancing.

  • From where do you gain your inspiration?

Answer: Usually from thinking about what I am about to write next.

  • What would you say are the main advantages and disadvantages of self-publishing against being published or the other way around?

Answer: The advantages of self-publishing are that you can be totally independent and enjoy a work-life balance of your own structure. The disadvantages of being published by a large company is that you are in effect employed by them to write to timescales set by them. Both courses of action can be immensely successful. It really depends how much you want to put into the route you take and how much freedom you want to enjoy yourself. I think the reality is that all writers are vain. It’s in their nature. Another reality is that there are very few authors who actually make a lifelong living from writing books. Of course, they exist, but there are thousands of writers who will never make it a full-time life-enduring career for a hatful of reasons. Being retired, you can perhaps see why I favor a course that delivers a good work-life balance.

  • How do you market your books?

Answer: Daily via social media, by word of mouth, guest speaking at various functions, author interviews like this one, and having a good batch of business cards that are handed to people you meet on life’s journey. Wherever I go, I usually present a card detailing my website to anyone who might be interested in reading.

 Why did you choose this route?

Answer: Historically, experience reveals what works and what doesn’t.  Basically, marketing is a numbers game. The bigger the audience you create, the bigger your readership can grow.

  • What are your views on social media for marketing?

Answer: I think the book groups on Facebook are excellent devices to present your work. Using Twitter and LinkedIn also provide an audience and lead to more connections.

Would you or do you use a PR agency?

Answer: No!

  • Do you have any advice for other authors on how to market their books?

Answer: Try to market every day on various platforms and try to diversify the style of marketing so that you are not seen to be delivering the same constant message over and over again. A book cover displayed is great but when displayed continuously day after day to the same platforms, it becomes potentially boring and doesn’t catch the eye of the reader.

  • What part of your writing time do you devote to marketing your book?

Answer: Coffee time in the morning and a half hour burst at night.

  • What do you do to get book reviews?

Answer: Nothing at all. I always hope for reviews but I don’t chase people for them. I think that is unfair. In any event, I’m very skeptical about reviews since there are far too many people willing to pay for reviews, give books away for reviews, swop for reviews, barter, and trade for reviews – almost to the point of ridicule. The world of ‘reviews’ lacks honesty on occasions.

  • What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Answer: Work hard, keep on writing, and never give your book away for free. Everything has a value however good or bad it is.

  • How can readers discover more about you and you work

Answer: Links to my website and blog site are below, as well as my Amazon page.

Author Novels: Paul Anthony Website

Paul Anthony’s Blog

Novels: Paul Anthony’s Amazon Authors Page


Septimus

Thank you, Paul, for allowing us to get to know you and have a glimpse into your writing life.  We appreciate your sharing some important points for writers of all genres and look forward to reading your novels.

This is where you can find me on book platforms and social media sites. I’ll be writing and sharing on social media. Hope to see you there, too! Carolyn Bowen

Social Media Hangouts!

These are a few of my social media hangouts! Drop by and say hello!

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Facebook

Love picture ideas? Me, too.  Pinners Follow Here!

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Blog Tour with Author Jaci Wheeler: Silent Song

Silent Song by Jaci Wheeler, Book Blog Tour, Blogging, The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Jaci Wheeler Author, Play it forward, Book Blogs, About the author, Inspiration, Author InterviewSilent Song coming to life by Jaci Wheeler

Notes from Author Jaci Wheeler

Many authors I know pull from events or people from their own lives for inspiration or storyline. I’ve never been that way personally. I’m an extremely private person by nature, so it’s very unusual for me to use any of myself in my books. That is actually my favorite thing about writing; I’m able to fully create worlds and people out of thin air. It allows you to become whoever you want for the moment. I usually create a main character that is nothing like me because it allows me to be and do all the things I’ve always wanted to.

I’ve had a very eventful life. Those who know me well always ask why I’ve never drawn from my real life for a novel since my life is pretty much a lifetime movie. The idea of writing anything close to home has always been completely horrifying to me. (Super private remember?)

I have a pretty unique situation where I lost my hearing at eighteen years old. (You can read more about it in my letter to the reader in Silent Song.) Deafness is one of those subjects that most people think they understand…but actually, don’t. There is so much more to deafness than not being able to hear. There are levels (decibels) of sound that is so intricate that it is much more than just you can hear or not.

A few years ago I read a book that had a deaf main character. The book was amazing, but there were so many things that weren’t accurate. It wasn’t glaringly obvious unless you were deaf, but it really bothered me. I had brought up the issue to a good author friend of mine and I’ll never forget what she said to me.

“The only way to fix this problem Jaci is to set it straight. That means you are going to have to write the story of a deaf person from their perspective. Show people not only your world but help them understand the deaf world. Who else will?”

I instantly shut her down. There’s no way I’m writing anything close my life. A few months went by and then I had to explain a few things about deafness to people that they just never knew. Like just because you speak English doesn’t mean deaf people can write in English without a struggle. Almost every hearing person I talked to didn’t know that American Sign Language is NOT English. It has its own structure and rules like any other language. ASL is my second language, but it’s the main one I use at home with my husband. It’s hard for my brain to switch back and forth between ASL and English. Because of this, I tend to change tenses when I write, which is very frowned upon in writing. I’m pretty sure I’ve driven every editor I’ve ever had to drink over this little fact.

After having to explain this to several people over a very short amount of time I finally came to terms with the fact that I was going to have to write a story with a deaf character.

Silent Song by Jaci Wheeler, Book Blog Tour, Blogging, The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Jaci Wheeler Author, Play it forward, Book Blogs, About the author, Inspiration, Author Interview

I decided to go home and just see if I even had a story in me. I don’t outline, ever. I just start writing. I usually write the end first, then the beginning and fill in the middle. (Yeah I’m weird.) So I went home and just started writing to see if I even had a story in me…and I couldn’t stop. I wrote through the night, and all weekend long. By the time I took a break I had almost written half of the book. This is the only book I didn’t have to re-write or revise. It was trapped deep down and apparently ready to be freed. I cried more while writing this story than I have probably ever cried in my life. But it was also the most cathartic thing I‘ve ever done.

This story isn’t my own, but the feelings are completely mine. The painful feelings, fears, and passion are all mine even though the story belongs to Barrett alone.

Silent Song by Jaci Wheeler is available on Amazon today.

Thank you, Jaci for sharing the story behind your new novel, Silent Song.

Order your copy of the Silent Song today! Happy reading! 

Thank you for following my blog and connecting on social media. If you get a chance say hello or wave, thank you! Carolyn Bowen

Social Media Hangouts!

These are a few of my social media hangouts! Drop by soon and say hello!

Goodreads

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Facebook

Love picture ideas? Me, too. Pinners Follow here!

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Hello October!

Quote for Today: “October is the month for painted leaves. Their rich glow now flashes around the world. As fruits and leaves acquire a bright tint just before they fall, so the year near its setting. October is its sunset sky.” Henry David Thoreau, Autumnal Tints

Hello October, Carolyn M. Bowen Author, The Writing Life
Autumn at Walden Pond

Henry David Thoreau lived on the northern shore of the pond for two years starting in the summer of 1845. His plot was in the woodland owned by his friend and mentor Ralph Waldo Emerson, near Concord, Massachusetts. Thoreau’s account of the experience was recorded in Walden; or, Life in the Woods, and made the pond famous. Wikipedia

I’m beginning October with thoughts of gratitude for all the good things that have happened for me and my books. I’ve probably missed some blogs or articles written about my writing life. Please, let me know, and I’ll add the features to my website. This is the listing – Media Page – Thank you!

Hello October, Carolyn Bowen AuthorYou make my day when leaving reviews and/or comments for The Long Road Home. It really helps others to learn about my books.

Autumn Reading ~ The Long Road Home – Paperback or Download FREE w/ #KindleUnlimited

FREE to a Good Home

Cross-Ties, Carolyn M. Bowen, AuthorI’m giving away five signed copies of Cross-Ties, my historical romance novel to the first 5 folks who follow my blog and leave a comment. Just say “yes” I’d like one.

Autumn (leaf season) is here and I love it. I hope you’ll get out in nature and enjoy this season’s kaleidoscope of colors. Carolyn Bowen

The Writing Life, Carolyn Bowen Author, Hello OctoberIf you like to connect with others who enjoy books, join my new Facebook group – Circle of Friends. I look forward to seeing you there.

Please check out my novels here and at your favorite bookstore! Thanks!

Say hello here…

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April Showers of Love

Quote of the Day: “We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.” Anais Nin 

April Showers of Love, The Writing LifeApril Showers of Love

In the month of April, I’ve received an abundance of blessings.

“Long Lovely Read” A 5-Star Review for “The Long Road Home” by Carolyn M. Bowen

 From Reviews to interview requests, it’s been a fun Spring and I am truly grateful.

Reviewers, Wanted: Are you a mystery-thriller lover who enjoys romance in your books? The Long Road Home may suit your taste in reading.

The Long Road Home, Carolyn M. Bowen, Author
About The Long Road Home-  Genre: Mystery, Suspense/Thriller, Crime Fiction and Romantic Suspense

The Long Road Home: A Southern twist of fate where lust, love, money, murder and revenge play key roles.

Blurb: Kate’s life was in turmoil after the death of her parents. She’d always been protected and sheltered by them. Suddenly she finds herself with a conniving fiancé living under her roof, a powerful businessman with terrorist ties from across the ocean trying to kill her and more family secrets than most American politicians. She was also unaware that a half-brother she knew nothing of was about to enter her life. Her situation was getting precarious right at the moment she was least able to cope with it.

The Long Road Home by Carolyn M. Bowen

The Long Road Home by Carolyn M. Bowen – Ask for it at your favorite bookstores! Shop Here Online!

Amazon

Barnes & Noble

Createspace

More Good News – Historical Fiction Adventure

I’m so happy about launching The Long Road Home! I’m offering Cross-Ties Novel with reduced pricing. It’s a story about love, passion, and family with some hiccups here and there. (Historical Fiction) Purchase today at Amazon: Paperback $9.99 – MatchBook $0.99 – Kindle $1.99 and Barnes and Noble -$9.99.

All Things Southern Contest

Iced Tea, Carolyn M. Bowen AuthorThis month I’m gathering recipes for making Southern dishes. I will sample the different recipes and choose one to star in my YouTube video. The winner will receive credit and a $25 gift card. I look forward to your responses.

Talk to me on social media! I post every day about my writing life or things I find interesting. Hope to see you there!

Social Media Sites – Say hello here!

Twitter
Goodreads
Google+
Facebook

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Bada Bing Bada Boom: March Writing News

Quote of the Day: March brings breezes loud and shrill, Stirs the dancing daffodil. ~Sara Coleridge 

March Wind, Carolyn M. BowenMarch winds have blown in a whirlwind of activities for my writing life and I love it. Let me introduce you to The Owl Branch and my latest interview where you’ll meet one of my kitties, Tooker.

An Interview With Author Carolyn M. Bowen

The Long Road Home, Carolyn M. Bowen, AuthorAbout The Long Road Home Genre: Mystery, Suspense/Thriller, Crime Fiction and Romantic Suspense

The Long Road Home: A Southern twist of fate where lust, love, money, murder and revenge play key roles.

Blurb: Kate’s life was in turmoil after the death of her parents. She’d always been protected and sheltered by them. Suddenly she finds herself with a conniving fiancé living under her roof, a powerful businessman with terrorist ties from across the ocean trying to kill her and more family secrets than most American politicians. She was also unaware that a half-brother she knew nothing of was about to enter her life. Her situation was getting precarious right at the moment she was least able to cope with it.

The Long Road Home by Carolyn M. Bowen

The Long Road Home by Carolyn M. Bowen – Ask for it at your favorite bookstores! Shop Here Online!

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

CreateSpace

Books, Carolyn M. BowenMystery Lovers: Book Reviewers Wanted

Do you want to know what all the talk is about? Ask for your copy of The Long Road Home to be in the know. I’ll gift you with the Kindle version for your enjoyment. Remember you can read it FREE on Kindle Unlimited. No strings attached. But if you don’t like it, remember the saying, if you don’t have something good to say, say nothing at all. <Smiles>

More Good News

I’m so happy about launching The Long Road Home! I’m offering Cross-Ties Novel with reduced pricing. It’s a story about love, passion, and family with some hiccups here and there. (Historical Fiction) Purchase today at Amazon: Paperback $9.99 – MatchBook $0.99 – Kindle $1.99 and Barnes and Noble -$9.99.

Around the House

Last month I talked about Southern foods. If you know why that’s important when talking about The Long Road Home, drop me a note. I’ll know you are reading or have read my novel.

Thank you for responding to my recipe request for making an old-fashioned Corn Pone. I tried one and it brought back childhood memories of eating cracklings’ and cornbread with fried chicken and of course iced tea.

I made some black-eyed peas in the crockpot with some beef broth substituting for the water and added some ham pieces along with a couple packets of Goya Sazón Seasoning. It was delicious and my corn pone was quite the accompaniment for this dish.

All Things Southern Contest

Iced Tea, Carolyn M. Bowen AuthorThis week I’m gathering recipes for making iced tea. I will sample the different recipes and choose one to star in my YouTube video. The winner will receive credit and a $25 gift card. I look forward to your responses.

Talk to me on social media! I post every day about my writing life or things I find interesting. Hope to see you there!

Social Media Sites – Say hello here!

Twitter
Goodreads
Google+
Facebook

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