Tuesday, 7 March 2017

My Interview with Author Antoinette Turner

When did you first realize you wanted to become a Writer/author?

I'll give you the really long version, please feel free to cut.  I had been an avid reader from a very early age thanks to my mum, and had a bizarrely good grasp of the English language.  I wasn’t a go getter at school, so I'm not exaggerating when I say it was bizarre.  I had complications after I had my first child, which meant I had to take medication that made me very tired and so my reading went by the wayside for quite a few years.  In 2012 my children were just starting grade six and seven –the kids were older and a little more self-sufficient by then - when my sister posted me some book series I'd never heard of and begged, pleaded, groveled with me to read them.  The name of the series was The Twilight Saga.  I read them through in a marathon reading session and then again three times in a row.  
That point in my life not only started up my love of reading again, but it jogged something inside of me too, because I literally woke up one morning and told my husband I was going to write a book.  He, of course, didn't really believe me, though he didn't not believe me either – if that makes sense - and so I sat down and wrote a 190,000 word book within a few months – which is still in my draw.  I went on to write Sweet Magic, Trusting Thyme, Alpha's Flame (Council of Wolves series) and coming soon Ice Cold Mate (Council of Wolves series).  

Where do you get your ideas for your book?

An idea for a book generally pops into my head.  It begins something like, ooh there some woman eating a cookie at her kitchen table.  Why's she eating a cookie when it's breakfast time?  She must love cookies.  Why's she alone at that table? Or, look at those two best friends, they've had such a hard time getting together.  How'd that friendship start?  What if she was a wolf shifter and he was a human?  I wonder at what point they fell in love?  I wonder if they had a friendship like my husband and I at school? (No I'm not a wolf shifter).  What's keeping them apart?  And it just keeps going from that one point of questions until the story unfolds.  Sometimes in totally different directions than what you expect.

What kind of things do you enjoy when not writing?

Reading, reading, reading, romance, romance, romance and Supernatural – of course.  I love cooking and entertaining.  I love being with my family and friends.  I love to shop with my, now, teenage daughter and my husband – note, my some hates shopping and will only come under duress.  I love my herb garden and walking around Mt Tamborine at the Gold Coast.  I really love my kid's enthusiasm of Oz Comicon, Anime and especially Manga – you can't help but love some of the characters and they are slowly pulling my husband and I into their world.  I especially love to tell mum jokes that make my son cringe.

How many books have you written? Which is your favorite?

I wrote an as yet unpolished book I've called Awareness – it's the start of a series about immortal twins.  I had also started writing the second book in that series when I stopped and started Sweet Magic.  I was going back to my Immortals series when Alpha's Flame (Council of Wolves) hit.  I had to write Alpha's Flame as soon as it popped into my head – subsequently it was finished within three months of starting it and remains my absolute favorite out of all my books.  Trusting Thyme came next and is probably my second favorite book.  Ice Cold Mate (Council of Wolves) is finished and at the editors of Solstice Publishing right now and I'm currently writing the final in the Council of Wolves series, I've tentatively named it Tempest's Heart.  So all up I have two books published with another two due out soon.  Alpha's Flame and Sweet Magic (formally Cookies & Cream) are re-released books as my first publisher closed down a year after I was first published.  

Do you have any suggestions to help others who have a passion for writing?

I tell everyone who will listen to me – start with a sentence.  That's it.  Start with one sentence – it could be an everyday mundane chore or a wild and chaotic spike.  Then ask questions.  Who, what, when, where, why.  You might keep that sentence as is, you may change it immediately, but you've started and that is the BIGGEST hurdle – you can learn how to world build and layer as you go.  You don't have to know it all.  

What do you think makes a great story?

So many things make up a good story.  Probably the quickest answer is the characters.  Sometimes I love a series so much I want to live next door to these people.  Or the fantastic oh-so-gorgeous neighbor with the oh-so-drool worthy abs or whoever your reading about that makes all your fantasies that much better.  I also love a book so well written it sucks me into its world so deeply I almost cry just because I know I'm near the end. *sigh*  I really do love books like that.  

Which Writer/Authors inspire you?

The list is long – I'm a bit of a talker – so I'll try to condense.  Nalini Singh is my top of the list Author-Goddess.  Nora Roberts you can't pass up, she is an amazing writer.  Patricia Briggs, Shelley Laurenston, Faith Hunter, Chloe Neill, JR Ward, Laurell K Hamilton,  so many more romance - contemporary, fantasy and paranormal writers.  I could go on.  Previous to my romance addiction I was an avid reader of Wilbur Smith and Eric Van Lustbader.  

What are you working on at the moment?(optional)

My third book in the Council of Wolves series – I'm still deciding on Tempest's Heart or Tempest's Storm for the name.  I also pick up and re-write my immortals every now and again.  

What genre are your books?
Trusting Thyme is a contemporary romance.  Sweet Magic is a fantasy.  The Council of Wolves series are paranormal fantasy.

What drew you to the genre you write?

I absolutely love a HEA, so for me it's a must when I pick up a book, therefore it's important I have that in the books I write.  I love to get them from Point A to Point B to Point C and watch them jump and mis-step and just plain act crazy until they figure their sh*t out.  

Which Actor/Actress would you like to see portraying the lead character from your most recent book?(any book you like)

I haven't really thought about it.  Ryan Reynold in any one of my books is the perfect fit – because he's fabulous and adaptable in any role and his acting is fantastic, so you've got to have Blake Lively since, you know, I don't want to split up a married couple.  Always with the HEA!

Do you write full-time or part-time?

I write part-time.  I have a full time job, a husband, two kids and other various relatives living with me every now and again – plus all the animals who feel they have the right to take over my house, so writing time is precious and sometimes very hard to come by.  My love of cooking and feeding people doesn’t help either.

What is the hardest thing about writing?

Time.  Definitely time.  I've found writing a series is more difficult than writing a standalone, but my characters – both male and female are strong in my books, so I love them all.

Any tips on how to get through the dreaded Writer’s block?

Keep writing – even if you think it's crap.  Write something else – a really short story.  A stupid/funny/sad/esoteric poem.  A series of limericks.  Get your creative juices flowing with something – hopefully the rest will follow.  I wrote a poem about a funeral the other day.  I woke up at one in the morning and wrote it on my iPhone – don't ask me why.  It's probably not even a real poem, but I wrote it and it keeps that love alive.

Do you read much, and if so who are your favorite Authors or genres?

All of the above mentioned authors.  Probably paranormal fantasy is tips the scales.  I probably shouldn't admit to how much I read – it's embarrassing and my husband might read this fantastic blog by Book-E-Holic and realize how many books I buy a week (when I should be writing – shhhh).

Is there anything else you would like to add that I haven’t included?

Really, you haven't had enough of me?  No, there's nothing else really, other than thank you for the time you've taken with me today and if you're reading this, thank you as well.

How can Readers discovery more about you and your work?(please provide proper links)

Email:  antoinetteturner@bigpond.com
Twitter:  twitter.com/A_Turner_Author
Facebook:  www.facebook.com/AntoinetteTurnerBooks
Thank you very much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to take part in this interview 😊

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