Monday, January 8, 2018

Interview With Cornelia Amiri #OpenBook Blog Hop



This week we're interviewing someone we admire. I chose Cornelia Amiri, a fellow writer who has been extremely helpful to me.

First, for my readers who haven't had a chance to meet you yet, can you tell us a little bit about yourself? 

Drawing on my love of a happy ending I’ve written over 30 published romance books under my name, Cornelia Amiri, and my pen name of Maeve Alpin. My muse, Severus the Cat, and I, live amid the hustle and bustle of humid Houston, Texas, as does my wonderful son and granddaughter. When not writing, I love to read, watch movies, and attend local steampunk events and comic cons. I'm currently working on the next book in my Druidry and the Beast series

You've written everything from steampunk to stories based on legends to historical romance and more. What's your favorite genre and why?

I would say it’s fantasy romance. I also love history. My favorite time period is the Celtic Iron Age. It’s an era few people have accurate knowledge of, so I have to make a world previously unreal to the reader, real to them, just like fantasy and sci-fi authors do. In the tradition of Marion Zimmer Bradley, I use fantasy to bring the readers into the belief system of the characters. I want to make the druid teachings of the time come alive to the readers. So, in my books, people can shapeshift, there are selkies, Celtic gods who shape shift into all types of animals, vampiric Celtic fey looking for love, and magic swords, magic cauldrons…lots of magic in general.  I also take fantasy into the Victorian age with my steampunk stories.

What was the first book you wrote and was it published?
This is a long story, it all began with the Celtic Warrior Queen Boudica, she made me start writing. I love history, and in reading a book about the dark ages, I came across Boudica. I was so inspired, I started jotting down notes, but they were fiction (it-must-have-happened-like-this type). 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. I’ve revised it slightly and retitled it to The Celtic Fox.

What's the hardest thing about being an author?

I think making time or I like to say buying time is the hardest. Right now, my day job is freelance writing, but even though I work for myself and have a lot of control over my time, I still fall way behind in my writing my books. It is often hard to do my freelance assignments per day and still have time and energy for writing my own books. Writing a certain number of words a day is one way to do it, but unfortunately that’s easier said then done.

What are you working on now?

I’m currently working on The Bear and the Druidess, the third book in my Druidry and the Beast series.

Do you have a favorite author? Who is it and why?

Morgan Llewellyn and Marion Zimmer Bradley are my strongest inspirations. Marion Zimmer Bradley wrote fantasies, Morgan Llewellyn writes historicals, and I write romances, but like them, I use historical knowledge and realistic fantasy that pulls from the druid belief system. Some of my other favorite authors are: Cecelia Holland, Ray Bradbury, Harlan Ellison, J. R. R. Tolkien, J.K. Rowling, Don Coldsmith, Rosemary Edghill, Teresa Mederios, Anya Seton, and Judith Merkle Riley.

I see we share some favorites! Out of all the books you've written, which is your favorite? (I'm rather fond of your AI series) And who is your favorite character?

Druids in the Mist, because it includes the Druid Center at Anglesey and Boudica, they and the historical events that occurred with them had a deep effect on me and for many years I wanted to write about them and share their story with others. I’m fond of my AI series too, mainly because it is comedy romance so it the comedy part of it always puts a smile on my face when I think of my wacky AI characters and also it was my first sci-fi book and I loved being able to get into sci-fi romance as when I was a teenager, before I discovered the romance genre, sci-fi was my favorite genre. If I have to pick a favorite character, it would be Tryffin because he was my first character. I was working as a file clerk and having an allergic reaction to dust. I closed my eyes to get a grip, and in my head, I saw the face of this man with reddish brown eyes and thick auburn hair, he reminded me of a red fox. Suddenly, the plot I had been kicking around had a hero and a title, The Fox Prince. He'll always be special because I didn't find Tryffin, he found me. I learned a lot about writing male characters from Tryffin. And Tryffin's a nice, stand-up guy. Cute too.

So many male characters these days aren't stand up guys, it's nice to find one who is.  Last question- if you could change one thing in your career, what would it be? 

I wish I had started writing books when I was younger. I didn’t have the confidence for a while and that is what I regret the most. I should have put all doubts aside when I was younger. I would have been able to write so many more books.

I wish I had started earlier, too. Now here's your chance to promote one of your books (or series!) For my readers who haven't read any of your books, which one should they go out and get today? 



I’ll go with my comedy sci-fi romance series since it will make the reader laugh. The series is called Love AI Style and the books are Code of Love, Code of Misconduct, and Code Name Love. I also have a box set with all three books in one called Love AI Style.


Here's the link for anyone who wants to go buy the collection. https://www.amazon.com/Love-AI-Style-Box-Set-ebook/dp/B07758TH5D.
You can follow Cornelia on Facebook at
https://www.facebook.com/cornelia.amiri.1


Thanks for taking the time to talk to me, Cornelia. One of these days, we're going to need to catch each other in real life.

Now, let's go find out who the other authors interviewed!


January 8, 2018 – Interview someone you follow or admire.

Rules:
1. Link your blog to this hop.
2. Notify your following that you are participating in this blog hop.
3. Promise to visit/leave a comment on all participants' blogs.
4. Tweet/or share each person's blog post. Use #OpenBook when tweeting.
5. Put a banner on your blog that you are participating.

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