What an intriguing, honest title for a book! It’s been good getting to know fellow Crooked Cat, Carol Anne Hunter today. I, too, started writing my books from short stories; I wonder how many of us authors have done the same?
I love the crinkly effect of your website, Carol Anne – and your gay humour. Tell us what fuelled your desire to take up writing?
I’ve always written daft poems and stories, some of which ended up in the office magazine, and once wrote a comedy poem for a fund-raising event which I read out on stage in front of over 2,000 people at the Glasgow City Chambers. It would have been much scarier had I not been wearing a cat costume and mask, which I hid behind! After early retirement I was bored and looking for a new way to fill my time so I went back to my writing.
Project Me – your first novel – promises to be a rip-roaring success and I’m looking forward to the read. What made you choose comedy?
I write in two genres – comedy and psychological thriller-type stories where someone ends up dead, killed by someone they know. It’s not the act of murder that I enjoy, it’s the mind games that lead up to it. I do worry that I enjoy writing these far too much!
How much of the book draws on your own experiences?
Quite a bit. Like all authors, real life inspires ideas so several smaller scenes were taken from real life and blown out of all proportion.
How long did it take you to write your book – was it long drawn-out agony, or did the words flow onto the paper?
A bit of both! For fun I wrote six short stories based on minor events in my life and again, exaggerated them for comic effect. Then I realized I could meld them together into a bigger story and the book evolved from there. Four of the stories were cut during the edits but don’t ask which two were left because I’m not telling! Some parts flowed onto the page, other parts were hard work but it all came together in the end.
How did you find Crooked Cat?
My fellow Crooked Cat Emma Mooney and I were already part of a writing group who posted information on Facebook about competitions or calls for submissions. She posted a Crooked Cat call and I went for it.
What are your writing aims for the future?
I’m writing a sequel to Project Me, working title The Pia Protocol, but it’s slow going due to my other commitments. After that I’d like to write a crime novel, albeit with a psychological edge.
You seem to have done many things in your life – like to tell us about your most rewarding experience?
Having my step-daughter and her family in my life is amazing. Her dad and I split up when she was at school and it was difficult to maintain the contact so it dwindled over the years but we reconnected four years ago and she now lives nearby. Her and her partner are the best support – ever.
If there were no barriers, what would you like to do / be / have in the future?
It’s a pipe dream but I would love someone to turn Project Me into a movie. I already know who I want to play the lead roles!
Like to tell us about a favourite interest – apart from writing?
I know it makes me sound like a hippie but I’ve had lots of hobbies over the years, ie dressmaking, cake decorating, glass painting, all of which have been abandoned for my writing. I still do a bit of Tarot reading, but only for fun, and I love to cook.
If you were given the opportunity to travel – where would you go and why?
There are so many places, it’s difficult to choose one. Paris would be high on the list, as would South America.
Project Me on Amazon: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/reader/B00NE2VBAE/ref=sib_dp_kd#reader-link
Carole Anne’s website: http://www.carolannehunter.co.uk/