Desolation Point is a Goldie finalist in the Romantic Suspense/Intrigue/Adventure category. We asked her the 6 questions you posed on Facebook – and here are her replies.
1) Who/What is your favorite book/author? Why?
I have a couple of favourites, so bear with me. I adore Jacqueline Carey’s debut novel, Kushiel’s Dart, for its epic scope and world building, but mostly for Phèdre, an unlikely heroine (she’s a classically educated courtesan/spy, god-touched to enjoy pain) who always starts out by irritating the socks off me right before I fall in love with her again. At 900+ pages, it’s my regular holiday reread; it’ll keep me going for two weeks, and I’m guaranteed to enjoy it. I must have a thing for daring female spies, because Code Name Verity is my other pick – a WWII young-adult novel with a twisting, unreliable narrative that made me bawl my eyes out. I’ve persuaded so many people to read it that Elizabeth Wein must owe me some royalties by now!
2) What has been your most surprising or interesting inspiration for a book?
The inspiration for Desolation Point came from me heading up a Swiss mountain path on my own and getting into a right flap when the clouds closed in and a thunderstorm hit the next valley over. All I did was turn around and run back the way I’d come, but for someone who’s not very brave (or good with heights) it was frightening enough to shape the novel. Sticking with the hiking theme, the crime at the centre of my forthcoming novel No Good Reason stems from something I often end up thinking about when we’re walking on the moors in the middle of nowhere: what if there’s a psycho around the next corner? Or, what would we do if we found a body?
Maybe I need to find myself another hobby…
3) Writing is emotional and can be isolating. From where do you get your support?
I’m lucky in that my wife is also my beta reader, so my support, brainstorming, and arse-kicking all come from her. She has the patience of Job, and I honestly couldn’t do any of this without her.
4) What does it mean to you to see your work in print and then up for an award?
Three books down the line, it’s still quite surreal to receive my author copies and see characters that I created and a story that I plotted all set out in a proper book that people are going to spend money on. I hope that thrill never goes away, because it makes all the months of hard work and occasional moments of self-doubt worthwhile. The Goldie nomination is the cherry on the top, and I’m chuffed to bits that Desolation Point has made it onto the shortlist.
5) What is next on your personal bucket list to accomplish (literary or otherwise)?
I don’t know about a bucket list, but this writing lark is certainly giving me a list of places to visit. I’d love to hike up Desolation Peak in the North Cascades – preferably without running into any escaped criminals – and go to Maine to try out their lobster rolls. As dreams go, I think those two are achievable, if the missus can drag me back onto a long-haul flight.
6) What are you working on now and what’s next up for publication?
Next up is the Dark Peak series, a police procedural/medical/thriller/splash of romance series (!) set over here in the Derbyshire Peak District. The first book, No Good Reason – due out in spring 2015 – centres around the investigation of a kidnapping and, strangely for me, features absolutely no adverse weather conditions. I’m currently about 12,000 words into its sequel, and I’m having a lot of fun mucking everything up for its lead characters. I’ve never written a series before, and it’s lovely to have the freedom of thinking and planning two or three books down the line.
Huge thanks to Cari for taking part. You can read a full biography and see all her books on her Cari Hunter author page.