Around the Globe with ROBERT SHIELDS

Finally, a warm day. Spring has been a long time coming. So, on this fine Friday morning, as I’m preparing to head to the tournament, I have to make a stop and pick up this week’s featured author. Where are we going? Where else but the gym for him show me some pointers while I conduct my interview. What? Oh, I’m supposed to give him ten more reps. Ack!

1. Who are you and what makes you the most fascinating person in your city?

I am the most interesting person in my city because I am a personal trainer by day and an adventure novel author by night, my dual personality goes mostly unnoticed.

2. Without revealing a deep dark secret (unless you want to), what one thing would people be surprised to learn about you?

People might be surprised to learn that I swear by the zodiac table, especially when matching up relationships and would turn down a date if their star sign wasn’t compatible with my own.

3. What interested you to become a writer rather than something else such a movie star?

I have always been a day dreamer and a movie star has to take part in someone ELSE’S story, I’d rather write my own and be the star in my head.

4. Writers are readers. With which author(s) would you enjoy sharing dinner? Why?

I’d like to have a good meal with Dan Abnett, he writes a lot of the Warhammer stories that I love to read, would enjoy finding out more about him.

5. If I were stranded on a deserted island or suffering from a four hour layover at the airport, why would your book(s) be great company?

I’d carry ‘Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde’. I can read that story over and over; it was the first novel I ever read.

6. Share your process of writing in regards to: plot and character development, story outline, research (do you Google or visit places/people, or make it up on the spot), writing schedule, editing and number of rewrites.

I play out my stories in my head first, day dreaming them and creating realistic plots, I then write my books like a movie, selecting which scene I feel in the mood to write and doing so, I later piece all the bits together and make sure the continuity matches. I do three re-writes before proofing.

7. “I think I have a good idea for a story, but I don’t know where or how to begin. Your process may not work for me. Any advice?”

I’d say the best advice is to write your ideas down, even if it’s small. Plan a scene in your head and write it. Do this over and over. Some scenes may get deleted later, others kept. Over time you may have collected 50k words worth and then you’re halfway there!! Motivation will kick in after that and its plain sailing from there.

8. I saw an amusing T-shirt the other day which read, “Every great idea I have gets me in trouble.” what is your philosophy of life?

My philosophy on life is this: it’s only after you have lost everything are you free to do anything’. So have no boundaries and smash through obstacles like your life depended on it.

9. Please tell me you’re not going to stop writing? What’s next for you?

What’s next? I have almost finished book 2 in my series Chronicles of Astoria, there are 6 parts in the planned series so I need to knuckle down on these first. I may even do a few spin-offs from the popular characters.

10. Where can people find more information on you and your projects?

If they search ‘Chronicles of Astoria’ in Google they can find me. My website is: www.mrshields.co.u.k Facebook: www.facebook.com/chroniclesofastoria

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