Today i bring to you a interview with the talented Robert Southworth who is largely responsible for my love in books, After reading the first book in his Spartacus series i was hooked!
Rob very kindly agreed t answer a few of my questions 🙂
Q1 – How long have you been a writer and what influenced you to first put pen to paper?
In my heart I have always been a writer, like many would-be authors I spent many years
jotting down ideas or writing the first chapter of a novel I was determined to finish. However, I suppose it has been around 5 years now where I can actually call myself an author. It may sound silly but I still smile every time someone asks me what I do for a living.
Q2 – I’ve read all your books so far and you seem to find a story where many wouldn’t see any.. Which lead to a very unique story. Where do your ideas come from?
Partly through the interest in the subject matter, partly through wanting to be that little bit different. The rest is probably something close to insanity as the ideas arrived at the strangest of moments. In the middle night, changing my youngest son’s nappy…usually when a pen and paper aren’t available.
Q3 – With the new book you seemed to change your cover designs quite a few times. Some authors don’t seem to put much time into the designs. Do you think it’s important to get the cover image right?
It’s vital to me and part of the creative process. Unlike many authors, I only have a broad outline of the novel before I write it. So building the cover helps me visualise the world in which I want to immerse myself. The reason for a cover change is often because, as the story progresses so does my idea of what the novel is truly trying to say. It is also important to attract the readers but that is secondary in the process but still key to the production side of a novel.
Q4 – I’d be interested to know out of the novels you’ve wrote do you have a favourite?And if so why? I won’t lie… I love them all…
Tricky one, but for quality of work I think The Reaper’s Breath simply because I’m learning my craft and I think that this novel shows the improvement. However, two novels stand out for enjoyment in terms of writing Spartacus III because of the challenge of creating a book that was in essence one long battle scene. This was departure from my other books, where I usually try to keep action scenes to short punchy sequences. The other and probably my favourite overall is Wrath of the Furies. Virtually every character is from my imagination; it was my first attempt at a thriller and was a joy to write.
Q5 – Who have been your biggest influences/support within the writing community?
Oh lots, authors such as Lofting, Ashman, McKay, Bayliss, and Rule have all played major roles in supporting me in both the creative side and marketing. However, I have to mention Sajjad Tameez because without his support I would never have had the confidence to actually put my books out there.
Q6 – Are there any books/authors you’re looking forward to reading this year?
Ooo loads both Paula Lofting and Louise Rule should have new books out this year and I have been lucky enough to see snippets of both and they are going to be something else. On a sad note, I will miss the chance to buy Terry Pratchett’s books, a pure genius that will be missed by many.
Q7 – As well as being a writer I note you write reviews too. Is this something you enjoy?
Absolutely hate it…when it’s a book I don’t like, love it when it’s a book that I enjoy.
Q8 – How important is feedback from your readers?
It’s so important for very different reasons. Firstly, from a purely sales reason, good reviews and lots of them will spread the word and so you gain more readers. The second reason is even more important. I have yet to meet an author who isn’t plagued with self doubt. It is an affliction that seems to travel hand in hand with being an author and I am no different. To hear that someone enjoys your work fills me with joy and banishes self doubt…at least for a little time. I am lucky to have found readers who love my work and offer a great deal of support.
Q9 – Any plans for a sequel to Wrath of the Furies? .. I particularly liked that story 🙂
Yes… but not sure when. The sequel has been planned for some time, Hades Beckons centres on the kidnapping of an important Parthian official and his family, just as Emperor Hadrian is entering peace talks. I hope to begin the tale later in the year.
Q10 – Plans for the future? I’m sure we’d all like to know what idea you are working on
Interestingly it’s quite a tricky question. I have had a number of requests to turn my story telling to the early part of Spartacus’s life. I have actually outline a few idea’s and a three part series called Legend is in the preparation stage with the first book being called Born of Blood. I also want to continue the Ripper Legacies and do the follow up to the Wrath of Furies. If possible, and it is a big ‘if’ I would like to write The Reaper’s Touch, Born of Blood, and then Hades Beckons within the year. However, that would require a great shift in my work life balance, one which I cannot ensure. That said, I would definitely like to get at least two those books on the shelves before 2017.
Rob’s latest book is out now! Click here for my review of The Reaper’s Breath!
Click the image above to head to Amazon.co.uk to purchase your copy today!