Updated: Jul 25
With the world in turmoil recently and the changes in everything we do, it has brought about a new kind of reality. Similar and yet so very different from the version we lived before viruses were a serious concern, and handshaking was replaced with an elbow tap.
It got me thinking about alternative realities. Is this world just a version of reality? And if so, what happened in the other worlds, do they still shake hands? Or did they suffer a worse fate?
So this month I am chatting with two very different genres. One loves to write fallible fictional characters, full of mistakes and flaws. The other writes about real-life ideas on how to make your life better in the face of difficulties. Like two sides of the universal coin, I was keen to see what ideas they brought to our reality table. And here is what they told me...
This month's authors:
Lisa is an Australian author who loves to create flawed characters and examine the possibilities of personality in her writing. So I was keen to delve into her mind and find out what makes her tick.
What is the hardest part about writing women’s literature?
I mostly write contemporary fiction with a psychological spin, so the challenge is to reflect the modern-day issues faced by women and the avenues they can explore to overcome them. I also feel that because there are so many clichés and overused storylines it’s hard to come up with ones that are fresh and relevant. That’s a challenge for writers of any genre.
I personally like heavily flawed but relatable characters who make lots of mistakes, so another challenge for me is to make those characters believable without being over-the-top.
Who is your favorite author in your genre, and why?
I love Gillian Flynn and Paula Hawkins because of the way they create the flawed yet utterly realistic protagonists who you can’t decide if you love or hate. Dark Places is an absolute favorite. Gillian really gets the reader inside Libby’s head, revealing snippets of what happened to her family, and giving us a raw, dislikeable character to start with. I love the fact that she uses first-person point-of-view to allow us to perceive the world as Libby does, something I aspire to achieve.
How do you get the balance of work-life and writing right?
That’s a good question. I’m not sure I’ve nailed it yet! I guess I write when I can, or when the scenes in my head demand to be written. I’m attending a workshop on juggling the writers' life, so I’ll let you know after that!
You have beautiful covers, did you design them yourself?
I had no input for the books produced by Serenity Press, but for ‘The Sunrise Girl’ I already had a concept cover, so the publisher used and enhanced it. My latest cover for ‘The Wash’ has been redesigned by the publisher, and I love it.
Lisa loves to catch up with her readers via her range of social media accounts at:
I hope you can take a moment to offer support for her by checking it out, and I extend my thanks for being interviewed!
Steve is a master of the mindful and a businessman of acumen. So I was keen to catch up with him and learn about his latest book about changing your mindset.
What inspired you to create your debut book, and how did you begin?
What inspired me to write my debut book was to further build upon all the books on mindset, goals, spirituality I’ve read to date as I noticed a gap – a gap I’ve personally learned to better fill in my everyday life and I wanted to share this.
I knew the importance of positivity, being determined, focused, and believing in yourself, and yet, these weren’t always enough to live the life you’ve always wanted. To me, this was the gap.
So, I wanted to address these points, that you shouldn’t mask negative situations/emotions with positivity, that not to be so highly focused/determined you ignored very obvious experiences that resulted and were a signpost for your further development.
So, this caused me to self-reflect more and understand my contribution to all events and if I really do want to materialize the life I’ve always imagined, then is there also a part of me that is limiting this happening?
So, I began by wanting to write and explain new concepts in the easiest way possible, to want the reader to be interested in these new viewpoints while still not ignoring the important topics to be addressed. I’m describing a new way of thinking and living that people, I believe, understand – it’s just very easy to form habitual patterns and the challenge is allowing new ideas to peak through.
Essentially this new viewpoint has to be experienced for yourself – it’s like describing a room to a person that is out of their focus, say behind them. It has to be experienced to be believed and enjoyed. But it first starts with the reader understanding there is a room behind them to being with and the exploring can begin. So, taking the time to read the book at a pace suitable to each reader and to allow new concepts to take on personal meaning would gain the most benefit.
What has been the most difficult part of the process for you so far, and how did you overcome it?
For me, this was addressing new concepts that are pivotal in helping live the life you’ve always wanted – for if they were overlooked, the gap that I experienced in the books I’ve read would still be there. The incorporating of these concepts has better helped me personally and I understood the importance of discussing them – and so explaining them in a way to make them meaningful to people is the part I also enjoyed the most. For if they were already understood, there would be no need in writing the book and everyone would be living a wonderful life as close to their ideal as possible.
I overcame this by using everyday words rather than using vocabulary that can lead itself to more scientific, religious, or spiritual terms that bring their own charged meaning that can be hard to move past. As well as excluding those who aren’t familiar with such vocabulary. I wanted to bring people and concepts together so using everyday words as much as possible was my writing style.
How does your previous education help or hinder your ability to write, and why?
My education really helped me, I studied Art and played musical instruments (the piano) as I knew at a young age how important creativity is, both in enjoying life but also in creating your life. If you can’t imagine how can you create it?
My maths, science, economics background helped as I looked at this world also with my artistic eyes, always studying those topics that would increase my life experience. Especially studying introductory quantum theory at university, this taught me that electrons don’t spin around a nucleus but form a probability haze. The very elements that make up our bodies are a probability – I found this fascinating. Statistics introduced me to the greater world of probabilities, and I could explore probably actions in my life, the type of life I would live if I choose one path over another, that I can merge probable paths not taken with the current one I’m on. For me, the freedom of choice is true power, as you open yourself up to paths you want to explore and live.
Economics and finance taught me survival of the fittest is an outdated concept applied from people’s view of nature – you don’t have to step on other people to get ahead. Even the sports I played, I was able to apply my creative side to my style of play.
Having such broad interests allowed me to view and experience the world around me free of current beliefs and helped in the writing of my book, as I could look at the traditional topics but from a different angle.
If you had a chance to speak with any author (living or not) who would it be and why?
While not strictly an author, Leonardo da Vinci. I like the way he was able to express his inner world via his drawing, paintings, and ideas for inventions and I’ve recently learned he never ended up creating any. We are all expressing our inner world of thoughts and ideas physically whether we are talking, writing, drawing and I admire how he mixed art and science.
Art means you relate to a concept while science means you describe a concept. I believe it’s impossible to separate yourself from what you are observing/describing as the very act of observing an object, event, situation changes it (there’s a scientific word for that I’m sure). So, relating to a concept, I believe would be closer to better understanding the concept and from that viewpoint, new inventions can occur.
Steve likes to stay in touch with his readers via:
I hope you can take a moment to offer support for him by checking out his book, and I extend my thanks for being interviewed!
I wish to thank you for taking the time to read and engage with me! Happy reading everyone! VK Tritschler