This Week’s Feature Author Interview with
Hi Chrys Cymri, welcome to the Indie Publishing Group website. Introduce yourself to us. Tell everyone who you are, where you’re from, what do you enjoy doing, hobbies and interests.
I live in the Midlands in England, the county of Northamptonshire. I love to travel, and perhaps the most challenging trip I’ve made was spending two weeks in North Korea in August 2016. At home, I live with a small parrot, a green cheek conure called Tilly, who is nearly as destructive as a dragon when she gets going. When I was 35 years old, I gave up my job as a bank manager to go to theological college. So my full time job now is as a Christian minister. I love photography, and one of my wildlife photos came third in a national competition last year.
When did you start writing and why?
I wrote my first short story when I was seven years old, and in a way I’ve just never stopped. It’s something that has chosen me, rather me choosing it.
Which is your favorite book you have written and what gave you the idea for it?
The first Penny White novel, ‘The Temptation of Dragons’, because it just flowed out of me–and I discovered that I could write humour! The opening scene kicked it off–a female priest driving down a road and coming across a dragon who asks her for the last rites.
How did you come up with the title for your book?
I was looking for something which could fit into a series. So all of the books are ‘Penny White and’. In the first book, both she and another character find themselves tempted by a dragon, and by the magical land of Lloegyr. Hence ‘The Temptation of Dragons.’
Who helped you with the cover? Or did you design it yourself? What was your inspiration for your cover design?
I looked on line for an artist whom I could actually afford. I then set up a Pinterest account and put in images to show her what I was looking for. The idea was that Penny was reflected in a dragon’s eye. The theme has continued, with a unicorn eye for the second book, and a gryphon’s eye for the third. The covers have been nominated for awards. Here’s her website: http://bookcovercouture.com/
What are some of the themes of your story?
What is family? Friends are the family we choose for ourselves, and Penny’s family includes a cat sized gryphon and a snail shark as well as her much younger brother. Diversity is another theme. Penny looks beyond prejudices for the best in any being, whether a dragon, unicorn, or a harpy.
What’s your process when you sit down and decide to start writing a book? What is your process and do you have a system?
I carry a small notebook and pen with me at all times, as ideas come when I least expect them. I usually know the start and the ending of the book, and I make notes as I go along. But I don’t really plot that far in advance. It’s a bit more challenging now that I’ve embarked on what will be at least a seven book series. I know that various threads will continue throughout the series, and it’s deciding how to make sure the pacing is right across the series as well as the individual books within the series.
Who are some of your favorite characters and why?
Well, I really like Penny. She is a minister who tries to do her best for people, despite the cost to herself. Fans, however, seem to adore Clyde. He looks like a large garden snail, until he opens his jaws, which are lined with shark teeth. Clyde eats by tearing birds apart, but he loves beer, sings hymns, and watches children’s TV.
Who are some of your favorite authors?
Patricia McKillip. ‘The Riddle of Stars’ is my favourite trilogy. I also adored ‘The Dark is Rising’ sequence by Susan Cooper when I was a young teenager.
Have you got anything you’re working on now?
I’m working on the fourth ‘Penny White’ book, ‘The Vengeance of Snails.’ Finally, readers are going to find out who Clyde really is!
If you could have any superpowers what would they be?
I wish I could be in two places at the same time. I’d get so much done!
If you could travel to any location in the world where would you go?
Mongolia. I’ve traveled quite extensively already, but I haven’t made it there yet. I write a travel blog: http://travellinghopefully.co.uk/
Where do you hope to be in 5 years’ time?
I hope to have completed the ‘Penny White’ series and returned to an earlier set of novels which I was writing. Penny White took over!
Thanks so much for taking the time to do an author interview. Take a minute and check Chrys Cymri out on the links below. Chrys Cymri’s book, The Temptation of Dragons, is available now on Amazon.
Chrys Cymri Twitter Account
Chrys Cymri Goodreads Author Page
Chrys Cymri Facebook Page
Chrys Cymri YouTube