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Interview with Annette Gisby

Can you please share with us a little about yourself
I grew up in a small town in Northern Ireland and moved to London with my family when I was seventeen. It was a lot different to small town life. My family moved back, but I’d already met and fallen in love with my soon-to-be husband, John, so I stayed in London. We lived in London for quite a while after we were married, but recently we moved to the outskirts of Basingstoke in Hamsphire. It has the best of both worlds, we don’t have to travel too far for shops, cinema or theatre and the countryside is only minutes away as well. Our house is overflowing with books (mostly read by me) and music (mostly listened to by John). We have enough books and CDs to open a small shop.

 Have you always wanted to be an author?

I’ve always wanted to tell stories. When I was a little girl, I made up stories in my head an used my dolls to act them out. As I got older, I started writing them down so that I would always have something to read later. In the small town I grew up in, there were no bookshops and a small library. It didn’t take me long to go through the library’s selection!

Who are some of your favorite writers? Who do you feel has influenced your writing?

As a teenager I read a lot of Stephen King’s books. I wouldn’t say his stories had a big influence on me, as I don’t write a lot of horror, but his author’s notes and his non-fiction book, ‘On Writing’ did. Reading that book was like reading about myself. At the moment some of my favourite writers are Carol Berg and Lynn Flewelling for fantasy, S. J. Bolton, Phil Rickman and Sarah Rayne for thrillers, some of which have a supernatural bent as well. I also like Elizabeth Chadwick for her medieval historical.

How did you get into writing in this specific genre?  Have you ever thought about writing in a different genre?

I knew I wanted The Chosen to be either fantasy or with a fairy-tale element, but it becoming a male/male romance happened a bit my accident. I wanted to write a fairy tale for adults. I had the prince, Severin, and I thought he needed a princess to rescue. I could picture Severin quite clearly, but I couldn’t get a feel for the princess at all. Instead, I kept being haunted by a handsome slave called Havyn. That’s who Severin wanted to rescue, not a princess. Once I’d finally figured out that Severin was gay, the story flowed much better.

I have written other genres, I never think of a book’s genre as I’m writing it. I let the characters tell their stories and worry about what genre it might be later. Genres don’t define my writing, the characters do. I’ve written mysteries, suspense, erotica, romance, science-fiction, paranormal and everything in between.

What are some of your writing rituals?

I use a kitchen timer that I set for an hour or two at a time and during that time I do nothing but write. No checking emails, no browsing the web. If I really need to research something, I just leave a note in the text and carry on writing. Then I can go back and fill in the bit that I needed to research. It’s amazing how much you get done without any distractions.

Can you please tell us about your latest book(s)?

The Chosen is a male/male fantasy romance. Here is the blurb:

Love or duty – which would you choose?

Prince Severin has been brought up to put duty before all else. Now, his duty is to marry and produce an heir. He has his choice of princesses. Unfortunately, his passion is for princes.

Havyn has been a slave all his life. When his powers are discovered, he finds himself purchased and freed by a Prince and apprenticed to the royal wizard, Ildar. His duty is to stay chaste to keep his powers strong. Unfortunately, his passion is for Severin.

With kingdoms at war, the throne hanging in the balance, and magic in the air, can the two men find happiness together, or is duty more important than love?

How did you come with the idea for this story?

I already answered that one above :) Instead, here is a small extract from the book:

“What is going on in here?” demanded Ildar from the doorway. “Severin? What are you doing with my apprentice?”

“Iri and I were just sorting out Havyn’s new wardrobe,” said Severin, waving to Havyn that he could get dressed again. Havyn quickly pulled on the tunic and leggings Ildar had given him on his first night at the palace. A fierce blush heated his cheeks.

“Havyn is my apprentice!” snapped Ildar. “He is my responsibility. Furs and velvets? Silks? A wizard has no need for all of that. I will ensure Havyn gets all the clothing he needs, not you.”

Havyn wondered how the wizard could talk back so forcefully to a prince without worrying about execution. Maybe wizards had no fear of death.

“He’s my responsibility,” protested Severin, his hands on his hips as he stared the wizard down. “I bought him. He’s mine!”

Can you share with us your current work(s) in progress?

Far too many! I get lots of ideas at once and take ages to settle down to one. At the moment there is a murder mystery set at a boarding school (also an m/m romance), a romantic suspense (m/f) that is under consideration at a new publisher since the rights have reverted back to me, and a couple of more m/m romances that are on the back-burner. I have an m/m erotica story, Of Pets and Pleasures, out in an anthology with Excessica Publishing which is also available as a stand-alone short story

What would you be if you were not an author?

Probably a librarian or running a bookshop. It would have to be something to do with books.

What is in your To Read Pile that you are dying to start or upcoming release you can’t wait for?

I am eagerly awaiting Casket of Souls by Lynn Flewelling, the final part of the Nightrunner series. It’ll be a pity to see it end, but once I have the whole set I can re-read them all again.

Is there anything else you would like to add?

My author page is here:

http://annettegisby.blogspot.co.uk/

I have a blog with reviews and interviews here:

http://booksandtales.blogspot.co.uk/

and a goodreads page here:

http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/252221.Annette_Gisby

6 Responses to Interview with Annette Gisby

  1. Janet Elaine Smith June 29, 2012 at 5:22 am #

    Interesting tidbits I didn’t know about Annette. Yes, books do tend to get in our blood.

  2. Annette Gisby June 29, 2012 at 5:31 am #

    Thanks for the interview :)

    • Kelly June 29, 2012 at 8:02 am #

      Thank you for being on the blog. :)

  3. Maryanne Raphael June 29, 2012 at 9:22 am #

    Really enjoyed the interview.
    The Chosen sounds like a really good read. Good Luck with your writing Maryanne Raphael

  4. Maria D. June 29, 2012 at 2:46 pm #

    Good interview! I like the idea of setting a kitchen timer and not allowing yourself to be distracted..it’s great advice – I don’t write but I do some editing and that is a great way to keep from getting distracted – Thanks:)

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