Interview with Ashley Brize

What makes you cry?
Video montages, anything bad happening to an animal of any kind, animals enthusiastically greeting their companions (human or otherwise) after a long absence, standing ovations.
What are you working on next?
I'm currently finishing up final touches for Play Dirty (Dirty Series, Book 3). I'm also working on revisions for a full-length novel and brainstorming for my next.
Describe your desk
My desk is multi-purpose. We live in a small cottage, and my laptop is in the sitting room so shares a space with our entertainment center (TV and Xbox). It's usually a mess of whatever else I can fit on there: half-finished knitting projects, needles, jars of coins, seed packets, a few water bottles, and more often than not, a cat in varying states of consciousnesses.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in the Pacific Northwest, in the sort of place that makes you feel guilty if you're inside writing while the sun is shining. I spent twenty years there, and the people that surrounded me in my child- and early adult-hood have left an indelible mark on how I view the world (and write my books). Every person I've met has influenced, in some small way, how I know people, and how I create my characters - even if no one I write is based on a real person (of course).

However, Britain is now my home and my culture, so my work, more often than not, is set here.
When did you first start writing?
As soon as I could handle a pen. When I figured out that a person could write stories and pull together these amazing imaginary worlds, I wanted to create my own.

Sadly, my handwriting has improved little since then.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I hate to say it, but I love revising. To look at a section that's been nagging me, if only in the back of my mind, then replace it entirely, only to find that the revision is perfect? That is its own special kind of bliss.

But there's nothing as brilliant as someone telling you they love your work.
Who are your favorite authors?
I have an eclectic mix of favorites, many leftover from my childhood. Gail Carson Levine, Charlotte Bronte, Jasper Fforde, Dodie Smith, and, of course, J.K. Rowling are all high up on my list.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
I garden, volunteer walking dogs for a local shelter, and spend many hours staring at a computer screen for my other work. I also knit professionally, but by the time I'm done with the workday, I usually just went to head outside and get my hands dirty.
How do you approach cover design?
I tend to gravitate toward the ridiculous and somewhat abstract (carrot erotica, anyone?). Sometimes I think I need people (like my husband, perhaps) to rein me in, but I like a cover that reflects the tongue-in-cheek nature of the humor in my books. Sometimes I just like something pretty, like the Saffron Crocus on the cover of Talk Dirty.
What do you read for pleasure?
I like the classics, and books that have a literary feel but are also lighthearted. I hate sad endings.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
I have a Kindle that's getting on a bit now, but it still serves me well. I was an early adopter in the UK - it's amazing to think about how only two years ago, I had people stopping me on the train and asking what on earth I had in my hand!
What do your fans mean to you?
As I'm just starting out - everything! If you are a fan of me, rest assured that I'm just as big of a fan of you - I think you have excellent taste.
Published 2014-03-17.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.