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Adventures in Writing » Interviews » Interview with Faith Mortimer

Interview with Faith Mortimer

I recently had the pleasure of making the acquaintance of Faith Mortimer, author of “The Assassins’ Village“, and she agreed to stop by for an interview. She has also agreed to provide a book sample, and I will post that online within the next week or so.

Faith was born in Manchester and was educated in Singapore, Malaya and Hampshire, England. She qualified as a Registered nurse and after some years changed careers to oversee a number of travel and sport related companies.

She is happily married to Chris and together they have four children. Once the children began to attend University, Faith decided to join them in reading for a Science degree. Faith obtained her Honours Science degree with The Open University in 2005 and says that the dedication and stamina needed to sit for a degree gave her the confidence to finish writing her first novel. She achieved this and January 2009 saw the publication of “The Crossing”. This novel is based on a true incident and Faith thoroughly enjoyed the six months or so research that went into the book and the later 18 months writing and editing.

“The Crossing” is available in paperback and Kindle format on Amazon. In 2011 Faith finished writing her second novel; a murder mystery set in the Troodos mountains of Cyprus where Faith spends the majority of her time.

Now on to the interview:

How long have you been writing?
I’ve always been interested in writing and at an early age subjected my younger sisters to listening to stories that I’d written. A career, husband and family got in the way of serious writing, until the children left to attend Uni. I decided the time was right to take my own degree. The literature course was full but Science had a vacancy! I began studying and adored it. Once I’d completed my degree with a good pass I realise that I now had the patience, dedication, stamina and new-found confidence to finish that book!

How many books, and in which genre, have you written?
“The Crossing” is my first published novel. I have now completed my second, “The Assassins’ Village”, which I published late April this year. I write in more than one genre. My first book “The Crossing” is an action/adventure/romance with a WW2 connection. My second book “The Assassins’ Village” is a murder mystery (voted best book in November 2010 on Harper Collins/Authonomy site), and my current one that I’ve just started will be a drama/thriller set in Malaya during the 1950’s and 1960’s.

What inspired you to become a writer?
I was inspired to write the first book one evening during a dinner party. A good friend was telling us about his recently passed away father and his heroic exploits during World War Two. His tale involved being a prisoner of war in Germany and Poland and of his many escapes from the prison-camps. Sixty years later he had a telephone call from the US and the caller had in their hands a bible that had belonged to him during the war and he now wanted to return it to the family. The story was fascinating and I felt shivers run down my spine as I knew I had found the story that I simply had to write. My second book “The Assassins’ Village” was taken from a small village in Cyprus where I now live. The colourful characters in my book represent some of the characters from that village – but fictitious of course!

What do you most enjoy about writing?
I love the research and then plotting the initial story-line. As I draw my characters I begin to really get involved and the story takes over part of my life. I enjoy being as one with the tale.

What issues or challenges do you struggle with the most?
I struggle with grammar and often go along with well-wishers who disagree with some of which I’ve written. For example, these days people try to lay down rules on how to write. I see and agree that there must be basic guidelines but, reading many books written by well-known authors time and time again I come across these so-called ‘rules’ that they have broken. Perhaps, once you’re famous and established then you can call the tune!

When do you find it best to write?
My writing process does differ. Ideally, I like to write first thing in the morning. I aim for at least 1000 words. I write for as long as I can and then leave off writing for that day on a good note, with an unfinished part. That way, the next time I pick up the MS I can immediately pick up and carry on. I do not read what I’ve written that day until a day later. My first draft is hand-written and then I put it all on my laptop. This, I count as my first (of many) edits.

What advice would you give a new writer?
For aspiring authors, I will say – just do it! It doesn’t matter if what you write is not good. If you feel a need to get your thoughts/story down on paper then go ahead. Improvement will come with time and practice. Not everyone is a best seller but the need to write can be overwhelming.

Tell us three random things about yourself.
Three random things about myself:
1) I spent part of my childhood in Singapore and Malaya (now Malaysia)
2) I am a qualified Yacht Master
3) I adore the stage and spend time taking part in musicals and straight plays. This year we’re performing Romeo and Juliet in the open-air amphitheatre in Limassol.

Who is your favorite author?
I don’t have just one writing influence as I read such a diverse spread of type of literature.

© 2011, Steven R. Drennon. All rights reserved.

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