Interview with Fiona Bagley

Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I grew up in a very small village in the south of England. There have been people living in that village since Roman times. I have always been interested in the lives of those that came before us. I don't think I really appreciated living in a place with so much history until I left. Now whenever I am in an old town I do my best to find out about the people who once lived there - I want to know their stories, walk in the same places they walked.
When did you first start writing?
I have been writing for a very long time - over 20 years. I always wanted to write a novel - I have these ideas that flit in and out of my head all the time but sitting down to let them out can be hard at times. I have written extensively for local newspapers and I really like writing 'feel good' slice of life stories. It's a lot easier to sit down and type out a 500 word piece! Writing a novel was a completely different experience - it consumed me.
What's the story behind your latest book?
Since the very first day I set foot in Savannah, I knew I had to write a novel set there. Something about that city just inspires me. I have always been interested in ghosts and the paranormal, Savannah makes it easy to believe that there are things that exist beyond our understanding. While exploring the back streets one day I came across an old mansion. I sat in the park across from the house and imagined the people that lived there. I became obsessed with the house. This house was really the reason that I wrote 'Parsons Green'. It was important to me that the story involved the people who used to live there and the people who live in the house now. I wanted there to be a strong connection from the past to the present.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
I love the way that you get to know your characters. In the beginning it is exactly the same as meeting someone in real life. You know so little about them but over time you begin to understand how their mind works, their idiosyncrasies. I love the part in the novel writing process when I realize that I know, I really know, that character and how they would react to a given situation. I develop feelings for them, they seem real to me. Some of them I like..others not so much..
What do your fans mean to you?
I am so grateful to those that have taken the time to read 'Parsons Green'. I know there are so many other choices out there. I appreciate the fact that someone would take the time to read an Indie author. In the beginning I was horrified by the thought that someone would read my novel and absolutely hate it. Over time I got over that! Every time someone tells me that they enjoyed the book or loved (or hated) a particular character I feel that the years of work were all worth it. I am very grateful to those who have read 'Parsons Green' and have provided feedback - it helps me become a better writer.
What are you working on next?
I am working on two novels at the moment, both very different. The first one is another ghost story , yes, I love ghost stories! This novel was inspired by a stretch of road that I would drive down on the way through Georgia to Florida. Every few feet there are memorials to those that have died along this very dangerous stretch of road. I wanted to write a story about these people. The other novel is a complete departure for me. It is a romance set in Oregon. Again this book was inspired by a small town, this time tucked away among the forest. I may have to insert a ghost somewhere into the story though!
Who are your favorite authors?
I barely have time to get through a magazine these days but if I had to list my favorite authors it would be Stephen King and Dean Koontz. I love the way that these two authors can build a world so terrifying yet so believable - oh to get inside their minds for a moment. I still remember being terrified to turn the page of Stephen Kings 'It' - that novel haunted me.
Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
The first story I ever wrote was a short story about an old man and his dog. I still have it. I never sent it out to anyone. Maybe one day I will - It still remains one of the favorite things I have written.
What is your writing process?
I have to have a strict schedule or I would never get anything done. Once my kids have left for school I run errands, do chores and then I sit in front of the computer from about 11am till 4pm. Sometimes if I am lucky I can fill those few hours with writing, sometimes I can barely get a page out. If I can use that time doing something related like research or crafting a pitch or query then I am equally happy.
Do you remember the first story you ever read, and the impact it had on you?
When I was a child I read a series of books by Enid Blyton. My favorite was 'The Faraway Tree' which was written in the 1940's. There is a certain charm in books written in that era. This novel was about a magic land filled with fairies and elves and other mystical, and sometimes very strange, creatures. I would get completely lost in the pages. I think this was when I realized how powerful a book could be in transporting the reader to another time and place. I still have a copy of this book which I read to my own children when they were small.
Describe your desk
UGH - my desk is a mess. It doesn't help that my very fat cat Neeps always insists on squeezing his huge body between the monitor and the keyboard. Every now and then I have to push his head down so I can see what I am writing. Right now my desk is littered in post it notes and various scraps of paper. I am NOT a tidy writer .
Published 2013-08-23.
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Books by This Author

Parsons Green
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 56,370. Language: English. Published: August 20, 2013. Categories: Fiction » Young adult or teen » Romance, Fiction » Romance » Paranormal
When Cricket McLean heads to Savannah,Georgia for the summer with her mother it comes as no real surprise to her when ghosts begin to appear. Not just any ghosts, but romantic, historical ghosts: Civil War soldiers, tortured industry titans, and unwed mothers harboring a secret sweetheart.To put old ghosts to rest Cricket must attempt to unravel a centuries old murder mystery.