1. Why do you write?
Because it's a bit of a buzz to be able to create characters, worlds and decide what their fate is. I suppose it is like playing God, but then again so is playing The Sims computer games!
2. How many books have you written?
So far, I've written two short stories/novelettes, and two short anthologies. I'm supposed to be in the middle of writing my first full-length novel, but that darn internet distracts me too much!
3. What inspired you to write you (latest) book?
Well, the novel is part of a series about time-travelling assassins. What inspired me to write the series was lying in bed at night, in the dark, and wondering what would happen if someone came into my room and chopped my head off.... but my head carried on 'living', as it were. Odd, I know!
4. What is your favourite genre to read?
I suppose it's magical realism/urban fantasy - magic meets mundane life, but I also love reading crime stories, particularly ones penned by Stuart MacBride and Mark Billingham, though I couldn't write a crime novel myself!
5. Is your writing style at all influenced by your favourite writers?
I'm not quite sure, to be honest. One of my favourite authors is Sir Terry Pratchett, creator of the Discworld series, and I think back in the earlier days of my writing, I probably did try and copy his style but I do think that after a while you tend to develop your own writing style. Saying that, however, I'm not sure if I could describe my own writing style. Perhaps that's best left up to the readers of my books.
6. What is your favourite book that you've written?
Without a doubt, The Shoemaker's Son, part of the time-travelling assassins series. It has all the ingredients I love in a book: historical setting, time travel, mouthy women, flawed characters, a dash of humour, etc.
7. What is your opinion of the art of writing?
Well, I think everyone has their own way of writing. There are 'rules', but they're not set in stone and are made to be broken. What doesn't work for one person can work well for another.
8. What advice would you give someone who is just beginning their own novel?
Get it written, first and foremost. Don't panic about spelling, grammar, etc. Get the story down first, then you can start sculpting it afterwards. And enjoy it!
9. Do you have any funny/interesting stories about how you've come up with plots or characters?
Well, apart from the 'chopping my head off' scenario I mentioned above, I came up with a story about a man who finds himself on a ladder in a seemingly never-ending dark tunnel, after listening to a BBC Radio 4 programme about the history of the game Snakes & Ladders. Not a particularly funny or interesting answer, but hey it may come up in a trivia quiz sometime in the future. ;-)
10. Coke or Pepsi?
Probably Coke, though the 'fat' coke, not 'diet' or that awful 'Coke Zero' (or whatever it's called) stuff. In fact, I'm weaning myself off Coca Cola at the moment. It's one of my very few vices.