Hello, hello! On this fine November day, I have the pleasure to share an interview with author Alison Knight.
Thank you, Alison, for visiting with me again! You have been busy since the last time. Two more books out for a total of three books published by Darkstroke Books. Yay! Do you have a favorite (character) (and, if so, which one)?
My favourite human character is Jack in Mine. He is based on my beloved Dad. Writing Jack brought back so many lovely memories of my father, making me laugh and cry as I wrote.
My favourite non-human character has got to be Bear – a big black dog, as seen on the cover of my latest book, The Hidden. He’s a gentle giant, a protector who brings two damaged, vulnerable people together. Who can resist him? I mean, just look at his picture on my cover!
Bear is definitely a handsome fellow! I love that you were able to use him on your cover!
What is your favorite activity to do in the summer? Winter?
I’m a simple creature so my favourite activities are the same all year round. If I’m not writing or reading, I can usually be found swimming! I swim most days and clock up a minimum of 7kms (just under 4.5 miles) per week. I’m not the world’s fastest swimmer, but I’ve graduated from the slow lane to the medium lane at my local pool and I’m pleased with that. Not bad for an old bird in her sixties!
Good for you!
What led you to start writing novels?
I read a book when I was a teenager – The Green Bronze Mirror by Lynne Ellison – that was written by a teenager. I decided that if she could do it, so could I. It took me decades to realise my dream, but that’s when the ambition took hold.
I have read books by younger authors, and have been amazed at the talent. It can be a struggle to arrange words into a pleasing sentence, but to complete an entire book takes incredible time and devotion. It's never too early or too late to start doing instead of dreaming. I'm happy to see you finish your third book!
Cats or dogs?
It has to be dogs – don’t forget about Bear! We had a Jack Russell Terrier called Daisy for over fifteen years and our son has a gorgeous Golden Labrador called Milo who comes to stay with us occasionally. Milo arrives next week for a long weekend break and I’m looking forward to enjoying cuddles and walks.
Oh, I love doggy visitors. I have family that brings their two Weimaraners up when they visit, and my Weim, Bodey, absolutely loves them.
Where do you draw inspiration? Real-life? Daydreams?
I am definitely inspired by real-life – my first Darkstroke novel, Mine, is based closely on my own life and family in the 1960s. That book and my early career as a lawyer then inspired my next story, The Legacy. The Hidden was inspired by The Legacy, because I’d written a secondary character in there who was horrible – spoilt, selfish, unsympathetic and a complete bitch. I decided I wanted to work out why she was like that and explore how she could be redeemed. So, as well as being inspired by real-life, my own stories inspire me to take an aspect or character from one story and write about that in another story.
My next book is the first in a contemporary series about a group of friends who grew up in the care system. They all decide to take an Ancestry DNA test and I’m writing about what they discover about themselves when their test results arrive. This was inspired by real-life after I took the test myself and discovered three first cousins I didn’t know existed (sshhh! Don’t tell anyone, but one of my uncles was a very naughty boy in the 1960s).
Your secret is totally safe with me. ;)
Do you write in the same genre that you read?
Yes and no. I read a lot of romance and several of my stories have a romantic element even if they don’t always have happy endings. I also love time travel stories and have written a couple of those (not currently in print). I enjoy reading stories with a sexy edge, but I’m useless at writing that sort of story so I leave it to other writers. That might be because my 93-year-old father-in-law reads my books, so when I try to write a sexy scene, I can’t forget that he’ll be reading it at some point and I just can’t do it!
There is that aspect, I suppose.
As always, I enjoyed visiting with you, Alison! Best of luck to you in life and with your writing!
Shine on! 🌞
Secrets, nightmares, and a big black dog…
Faye has found sanctuary in a simple cabin in the wilds of the Crazy Mountains in Montana with a dog called Bear. She’s a long way from her old life in England. But she knows that one day her peaceful life could be invaded by her enemies, and she keeps her guard up at all times.
Jeff returns home from Vietnam, a wounded, damaged hero, just weeks after his father’s sudden death. He finds hostile, secretive Faye living in his cabin and refusing to leave. The reading of his father’s will adds another layer of mystery to this woman’s presence.
The tension between them grows as Jeff tries to overcome his nightmares and expose Faye’s scars and secrets. The more he learns about her, the more enigmatic she seems.
When her enemies come calling, she needs Jeff to protect her. Can they learn to trust each other? And will Faye ever be safe?
More about Alison Knight
Alison Knight has been a legal executive, a registered childminder, a professional fund-raiser and a teacher. She has travelled the world – from spending a year as an exchange student in the US in the 1970s and trekking the Great Wall of China to celebrate her fortieth year and lots of other interesting places in between.
In her mid-forties, Alison went to university part-time and gained a first-class degree in Creative Writing at Bath Spa University and an MA in the same subject from Oxford Brookes University, both while still working full-time. Her first book was published a year after she completed her master’s degree.
Alison currently has a trio of novels published by Darkstroke. The first, Mine, is a domestic drama set in 1960s London and based on real events in her family. She is the only person who can tell this particular story. Exploring themes of class, ambition and sexual politics, Mine shows how ordinary people can make choices that lead them into extraordinary situations.
The Legacy, a drama set in London in 1969, was inspired by a scene in Mine, and explores how an unexpected legacy can be both a blessing and a curse. The Legacy looks at themes of greed and expectations, and the lengths people will go to when they are desperate.
Her third Darkstroke book, The Hidden, is a romantic suspense that picks up the story of one of the characters in The Legacy. Set in Montana in 1973, two wounded, damaged people are forced together, each guarding their secrets. Can they learn to trust each other? And will their nightmares ever end?
Alison teaches creative and life-writing, runs workshops and retreats with Imagine Creative Writing Workshops(www.imaginecreativewriting.co.uk) as well as working as a freelance editor. She is a member of the Society of Authors and the Romantic Novelists’ Association.
She lives in Somerset, UK, within sight of Glastonbury Tor.
Want to see what Alison is up to? Check out her social media links below.
@Alison_Knight59 on Twitter