Day 2 of Questions and Answers

Sorry for the delay to this post but I could not get this to publish at all yesterday and had issues with my blog. It seems to be fine now and will post the last part this evening .

What is the time span of book 8? Start to end? Weeks,months?

Book 8 is just a matter of weeks. After the first 4 month initial separation period the story line between Alexi and Camilla is just a few weeks of her being back in the club before the book 8 cliffhanger. Book 7 was over a year, so add the year, the four months and the few weeks and you have over a year and a half of the time that Sophie and Arrick are together in book 5-6 and some of their time in Paris. The two stories run along the same period. In book 8 conclusion, Sophie and Arrick have only spent a few months in Paris and are around engagement moments.

I thought your next book was going to be a light comedy romance but it looks you are going to do a YA witch series? Is this true?

I started a witch book almost two years ago as a challenge set upon me by the lovely Shirin from Opinionated cupcakes. I have never read nor written YA fantasy and she wanted to help me break out of my comfort zone with a simple weekly task. We both took the challenge. The outcome was ‘The Cruden Tale’ on Wattpad, where you can still currently find it in it’s unfinished state. I made the decision after fans and my team really enjoyed the rough read along, to finish it and release as a part 1 of a YA series. Because it requires the least amount of work than a new book will, I have it scheduled it in after Alexi’s view, before I start my Romantic Comedy standalone.

Why are the Carrero’s in New York and not Chicago or Italy as the main residence? I don’t think of NY as mafia crime ?

I am a bit of a mafia movie fiend. I spend my life watching things like Goodfella’s and based the Carrero’s on the infamous ‘five families of New York’ that ran the city. The Italian american connection is well documented and even the Carrero’s being from Sicilian descent fits with true history for the state. I do indulge in movies like ‘The Godfather’ and other gangster related films, so it was just a natural decision to go with what I knew happened in real world history and just changed it to suit my world.

Would you have written them earlier if you knew the success you’d have?

I think I wrote them when I was supposed to. I don’t think my brain or attention span would have allowed them to come any sooner. I was at a time in my life where my kids no longer needed as much time and attention and I could work from home while they are at school.

Will the Carrero series ever end? 

I do not have any plans at this current time to make an end or conclusion trilogy. I am willing to just see where they take me and work on other projects between trio’s.

How did you get to writing about a big Italian family originally? Is it something that interests you? Or just that Italian stallion phrase? Lol

Obviously the stallion hahaha.
I have Italian family and friends in my huge dysfunctional gene pool. I had an aunt Sylvana …I know, shock. She was a lovely warm and exuberant soul who just loved children and I always loved her food.
I have always loved Italy and Italian people and find them passionate and blunt, which is something I love about them. One of my closest friends is an Italian New Yorker and she detail reads the books to fact check for me when in rough draft. I just think my childhood influences and adult friends gave me such a warm affectionate view of Italian people that I wanted them as my gold hearted hero’s. One of my favourite movies of all time is set in Italy ‘Only You’ featuring Robert Downy Jr and gave me a desire to travel Italy one day.

Can you give any hints as to what book 10 will be based around 😉

Book 10 is going to be a bit of a curve ball. A new character finds out she is in fact a Carrero and will come back to the main family to find her roots and get to know her relations. I don’t want to give much away, other than we are back in the fold of the original families in the Hampton’s for a lot of the first in this trio. She’s new, you have not met her and I think her story will be completely different to any of the previous books.

Does Sophie have Asperger? She’s so talented but quite unsure of social prompts.

Yes she does. All the traits and signs are in the three books but I never want to label my characters with anything. I want people to just accept her as her and those who do have similar issues relate to her. I have had so many people reach out and ask me this question because they really did connect and identify themselves in her. She has social awareness issues, naivety concerning people’s intentions, a general young girl personality with special interests in things other do not see as age appropriate. She is also naturally gifted. Very smart but lacks a lot of basic common sense and danger awareness. She misses social cues, has aggressive melt downs and finds it hard to process her wealth of emotions or show any affection or tenderness to people. She doesn’t like touching but she has always thought it was to do with her past. She can be cuddly and sweet and affectionate when she trusts and loves which is pretty normal among ASD, even without abuse. I mean there are so many clues in the books which support this, that are very subtle so the average person won’t pick up on it unless they know a lot about autism.

How do you keep focused on the books when you release so many in such a short time frame?

I sometimes need a full month break after a book and do no writing whatsoever to let my brain rest and my mojo settle. Lately due to family issues, my writing ‘norm’ is all out of whack and instead of intensely focusing on a book in a month to get it out and done, I have had to work in slow spurts and take my time. I think I prefer it this way as I feel less emotionally drained and exhausted. I don’t choose to focus really , it comes naturally when I make myself sit and work. I get urges and I just do, when the urge is not there I know I need time out.

Will we see more of Giovanni in upcoming books? Or learn about his past?

My team and I have thrown around ideas on short novellas for character back stories. People like Giovanni and Leila and I am still pondering this idea. If I do release back story books they will be short reads and might name a series ‘Carrero Connections’ or something similar. I am often asked things about minor characters and think it would clear up a lot of that if each had their own back story short. I have no plans to start on them soon though, LOL

Do you keep an up to date family tree? So you can keep track of names

There is a family tree on my website but I need to actually work it out properly and make myself a wall copy. Sometimes I confuse myself so it would be an advantage.

Come back for the 3rd round of questions later today, or submit your own here before 6pm UK time.

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