Interview with Sibel Hodge
1: What is the most productive time of the day for you to write?
When I’m writing a novel, it’s all day, every day. I’m blinkered to everything else and will write solidly for twelve hours daily. Even when I’m not writing, my mind is on overdrive, thinking of scenes or conversations that my characters will have. I always keep a pad and pen by my bed because I often find some great ideas come to me just before falling asleep.
2: Do you start your projects writing with paper and pen or is it all on the computer?
I usually write out my basic plot outline on paper, then transfer it to my laptop to work on. I use my laptop for all writing work. I couldn’t imagine writing a whole novel on paper!
3: What do you draw inspiration from?
Everything and anything: a conversation I’ve had, real life events, personal experiences, my own imagination, a book I’ve read, a film I’ve seen. The list is endless.
4: Do you set yourself goals when you sit down to write such as word count?
With my debut novel I didn’t set any word counts, it just all poured out of my head naturally. With my second novel, I wanted to write a chapter a day, which worked pretty well.
5: Are you a published or a self published author?
I am independently published. Unfortunately a book could be brilliantly written, have fantastic characters and plot, have great commercial potential, and yet still not be taken up by a publisher. I think publishers are afraid to take risks on new writers; they want to stick with established authors who already have a large readership. With the existing economic crises as well, this further decreases the opportunities for new authors to break through and become published. But there is a real change in the attitude of readers, retailers, and mainstream publishers to self-published books. In fact, many self published titles are gaining a lot of publicity and sales and these authors have been signed by major publishing houses. My novels have been recognized through literary awards such as the Harry Bowling Prize 2008 and The Yeovil Literary Prize 2009
6: What drives you to choose the career of being a writer?
I think you don’t choose to be a writer, it chooses you. It’s an overwhelming desire to get your thoughts and words onto paper and share with the world. It’s only in the last few years that I’ve had the opportunity to fulfil the dream of writing that I’ve always had.
7: Do you own an ebook reading devise?
Not yet. At the moment I read ebooks on my laptop. Ebooks are becoming huge now so I will treat myself in the near future.
8: Who are some of your favorite authors and What are you reading now?
I’m a big fan of comedy – both romantic and mystery. I love Janet Evanovich, Marian Keyes, Sophie Kinsella, Harlan Coben, but I also love straight thrillers and mysteries like Michael Connelly, John Connelly, Dennis Lehane, Ian Rankin, Lee Child, Kathy Reichs, and Mo Hayder.
At the moment I’m reading The Hard Way by Lee Child.
9: What do you think of book trailers and do you have any plans to have any?
Book trailers seem to be the in thing now for marketing and raising awareness to your novels. When I’ve done some research on it, I’m sure I will add that to my “to do” list!
10: What are you working on now that you can talk about?
I have so much that I want to do and not enough time in the day. After being available in various ebook formats, I’ve just launched the paperback versions of my romantic comedy, Fourteen Days Later, and my comedy mystery, The Fashion Police. I'm planning a series of books following on from the Fashion Police that will send Amber Fox on various adventures. I'm also planning to write a sequel to Fourteen Days Later that will be set in North Cyprus. Several literary consultants and editors have suggested that I turn both novels into film scripts, and this is something I'm currently working on.
The Fashion Police and Fourteen Days Later are available in paperback and various ebook formats. Please see my website for details http://www.sibelhodge.com/