... Cornelia Amiri
1. Tell me about your book Vampire Highland Fling and where you got your inspiration for it?
It’s a paranormal/erotica/romance, a quickie form Ellora’s Cave and the second in the Dancing Vampire series, Dance of the Vampires is the first. Murdina, a dark vampiric fey, hunts the Scottish Highlands for a man, but not for blood. Murdina wants love. She spots Cameron playing the bagpipes as he’s coming from a wedding. When a strong wind lifts his kilt, she takes a good look and decides he’s the one. Wrapped in each other’s arms they discover true love, but their time together is limited before Murdina’s fey sisters cross the portal to steal her away and probably kill him. I was inspired by Celitic lore of the Scottish baobhan sith, also known as the dancing vampires.
2. Where do you gain your inspiration/ideas from in general?
I am often influenced by Celtic myth, legend and history.
3. When did you first become interested in writing?
I loved writing from age six on but I didn’t have the confidence. The Celtic Warrior Queen Boudicca made me start writing professionally. I love history and in reading a book about the dark ages I came across Boudicca. I was so impressed by her, I started jotting down notes, but they were fiction, about how I envisioned it to have happened. Before I knew it, I had written a novel. I thought, gosh I can really do this. So after accidentally writing that novel, I wrote one on purpose, The Fox Prince, which turned out to be my first published book.
4. What was the first thing you wrote?
I When I was six, I had a little stand, like a lemonade stand, but instead of lemonade I sold books I made. Pieces of paper with some simple six year old writing and pictures I drew, stapled together.
5. How do your family feel about you being a writer/author?
My family is my son, as I’m a single mother. He is now 31 and has always been very supportive of my writing. He understands it’s my dream and he has told me many times how proud he is of me. I am very proud of him. I also have an eight year old granddaughter, who is proud that I am a writer as well. She wants me to write something in her age range.
6.What advice would you give to someone still trying to become an author?
Find your unique author voice and go with it, always. Never give up, following a dream is always hard work, but it's the only way to truly live.
7.Is there anything that annoys you connected to writing or being a writer?
At book signings I sometime run into people who believe reading is only for children or that spending time reading is a bad or unpopular or that most people have no time for reading. Those beliefs annoy me especially when people pass them on to their children. Reading is incredible fun and it broadens your mind and your life experiences and no one should be discouraged from this wonderful pass time. When you enjoy a book, it doesn’t take long to read it at all.
8.Have you ever based a character on a friend or family member?
Yes, in my young adult novel, The Prince of Powys, I drew on a zany, bubbly, and sweet co-worker. When she came into a room, it was as if sunshine came with her. I used her personality for my heroine, Branda. For the same book, The Prince of Powys, I drew on an old boy friend as inspiration for the hero, Blaise. But I took his name from my son's history teacher, Mr. Blaise, who was Welsh. In A Fine Cauldron of Fish I drew the heroine, Margaid’s personality from a good friend of mine. And the heroine, Ceridwen, in To Love A London Ghost was inspired by a trainer at a customer service job I had. She was bright and bubbly and loved food, she’d get so excited about all the pot lucks we had. I’ve never eaten better in any training class. We had pot lucks every other day. In to Love A London Ghost, my heroine can’t eat as she’s a ghost, so she talks about food all the time and floats around the dining table smelling all the delicious Victorian fare, especially the yummy deserts.
9.If you could hang out with one of your characters, what would you do together?
Since my characters are mostly Celts from the dark ages or ancient times, I would like to dance around a Samhain bonfire with them. That has always seemed like a lot of fun to me.
10. Have you ever had a dream that to you would make a great book or short story?
In a day dream I had, a missing head was placed back on the neck of a statue which then came to life. I thought now there’s the beginning of a story and the steampunk/ romance novel I wrote under the pen name Maeve Alpin, As Timeless As Stone was born.
11.What was your favourite book as a child?
I loved the Little Bear books and Charlotte’s Web was the first book that made me cry.
12.What was the last movie you went to see?
Safety Not Guaranteed which I loved. And before that I saw Seeking A Friend for the End of the World. They are both marvellous and I loved them. They both follow the type of Sci-Fi I like the most. Take a plain, average person and place them in extraordinary circumstances and see what happens. Concentrate on the characters, flesh them out so they are a s real as can be, add a little humour and a touch of romance, then kick in with the mind blowing Sci-fi aspect right at the end.
13.If you were stranded on a desert island, what five things would you have with you?
I need a lot of books to read
Pens and paper, someway to write
My cat, I would miss him so much otherwise, and also he could kill snakes and strange bugs.
A tent with misquote netting, a comfortable cot, and bedding
My son and granddaughter to make me laugh and keep me from getting lonely
Murdina, a dark vampiric fey, hunts the Scottish Highlands for a man, but not for blood. Murdina wants love. She spots Cameron playing the bagpipes as he’s coming from a wedding. When a strong wind lifts his kilt, she takes a good look and decides he’s the one. When Cameron meets a beautiful, mysterious woman who dances the Highland Fling for him, his blood boils for her. Soon Murdina and Cameron are doing more than dancing. Wrapped in each other’s arms they discover true love, but their time together is limited before Murdina’s fey sisters cross the portal to steal her away and probably kill him. Is their love strong enough to overcome the threat her sisters pose to Murdina’s heart and to Cameron’s life?
Cornelia Amiri is the author of 16 books both novels and novellas. She writes Celtic/ Paranormal/ Romances under the name Cornelia Amiri and Steampunk/Romances under the name Maeve Alpin in a wide range of heat levels form young adult to erotica romance. Please visit her websites at http://CelticRomanceQueen.com and http://MaeveAlpin.com