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My next lovely guest is
Marie Anne Cope
Book Title: Bonds
Genre: Dark Fantasy
Marie Anne Cope is the author of Bonds, Broken Bonds and Tales From A Scarygirl and Creator of the blog Scary Ramblings
I’ve lived in North Wales for the past decade, having moved from the city with my job, and I have fallen completely in love with it. The scenery, the places and the people have been a soothing balm to my hectic city life.
Writing is who I am and I am often asked where I get my ideas from. Whilst I have a vast stock of stories hidden in the deep dark recesses of my mind, I always advise budding writers to keep their eyes open and pay attention. After all, the inspiration for Bonds came from something cold and dark lurking at the back of a country church!
Bonds is the first of four novels, centred on the unusual relationship between Becca Martin and Antony Cardover. I continue the gripping story in Broken Bonds and the third instalment – Bonds: Re-Bound – is being created by the voices in my head.
My current project is something a little bit different, although still supernatural. With The Misfits, I am changing genres to that of children as I introduce four friends – Achoo, Mina, Boo and Zoe – who are finding it difficult to live up to what is expected of them as, respectively, a werewolf, a vampire, a ghost and a zombie.
Bonds reached the quarter-final of the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award 2012.
In October 2013, Tales From a Scarygirl, a collection my short horror stories, hit the shelves and included the individually published Three Silver Bullets and Sheer Hell.
Short synopsis of book:
Set in both the 17th century and the modern day, Bonds is a dark fantasy novel which tells the story of Becca Martin’s struggle to accept her birthright as a witch and Antony Cardover’s battle to break his vampire curse. The two are linked together by Isabella Cardover, Antony’s adulterous wife and Becca’s ancestor. To break his curse, Antony must destroy Becca. To save herself, Becca must use her gift of the Craft. Only one of them can survive…
Towards the end of the 17th century, Antony Cardover has slaughtered most of the village of Breccan, seeking vengeance for his wife Isabella’s betrayal. Anna Martindale, Isabella’s mother and a practising witch, is the only one who can stop him. Antony can only be stopped by breaking the curse, but the curse can only be broken by Antony destroying Isabella and all her descendants. In an attempt to break the curse, Antony realises the truth too late, just as Anna’s spells condemn him to a stone sarcophagus buried in consecrated ground for eternity.
In the present, Becca Martin starts her first day at the new Ramply Homes site of St Martin’s Church, in the grounds of which Antony resides. Soon Becca is haunted by visions and nightmares that leave her wounded and afraid. The desecration of the church has weakened the spells and people start to die as Antony breaks free.
To find answers, Becca visits her estranged mother, where she discovers the truth about her ancestry and is forced to face up to whom and what she is. Only a small wooden box and her gift of the Craft hold the key to her survival.
Why do you write?
I often get asked this and it puzzles me as, for me, it should be ‘why wouldn’t I write?’ I write because I have a burning desire to tell my tales, to share with the world the stories that my mind creates. To be lost in my fantasy world is the place I most enjoy being and a place I want to share with others. It’s as simple as that.
I understand that Marie. Imagination is a wonderful gift we as writers can access every day!
What made you choose that genre?
I’m not sure which came first – my dark imagination or my introduction to horror movies at an early age. I used to love watching Dr Phibes and Hammer Horror with my dad and fell in love with vampires when I watched Frank Langella play Dracula. I find the supernatural intriguing, romantic, mysterious and deadly, and this leads the voices in my head to weave wonderful tales designed to send shivers down the spine of my readers. I love to hear that my stories have created fear, but more importantly, like the girl in the horror movie who always walks into a dark basement, I love to hear that, despite this fear, they continue on their journey.
Girl power! We feel the fear and do it anyway – not always for he best!!
If you could be anything else – what would you be?
That’s easy. I would build up my business as a yoga teacher and teach full time. People are always amazed when they meet me, and learn I also teach yoga, that I write horror and dark fantasy. Apparently, I don’t look the ‘type’. I like that. I also don’t believe there is a ‘type’.
Not sure what ‘type’ I fit into? I used to do morris dancing with big sticks and blackened face with bells all over me! People couldn’t believe I had the discipline to write every day!!
If you could go back in time to when you first began writing, what advice would you give yourself?
I would tell myself to believe in myself and not allow others to make me believe I shouldn’t be writing the sort of things I like to write.
Only once did I choose to write down a story, as a child. It was the tale of a severed arm being found washed up on the shore. It was dramatised by graphic drawings and heavily influenced by a certain movie I wasn’t supposed to have watched.
I was rapped on the knuckles and told never to write anything like that again. I never did. Not a word. Not for over fifteen years.
Why did I start again? Which of the voices in my head can claim credit for restoring my storytelling? I cannot say, for fear the others may fall silent. Suffice it to say the stories came thick and fast, once the dam had burst.
By the way, the teacher who told me never to write ‘such horrid things again’ is now one of my biggest fans!
There will always be people who put you down, people who’ve been there and done that, people who can do it better than you. Or, so they say.
It’s human nature (for most of us) to believe the criticism, to believe we’re not good enough or not talented enough. As Julia Roberts says in Pretty Woman ‘the bad stuff is easier to believe.’
But, there are more people who believe in you and these are the voices to let in. More importantly, listen to your inner voice, your inner strength – your gut. It will tell you whether you have what it takes.
Always remember, it’s not how many times you fall that matters, but how many times you pick yourself up and try again. This is the key to success.
Love this – agree completely – though it is hard sometimes to keep believing
What advice would you give other authors?
Don’t ever let anyone tell you that you can’t/shouldn’t do something. If you have a dream, follow it. For me, if you don’t have a dream or a goal in life, you have nothing.
Dreams have brought so much change, so much difference to the world we live in and many of them we now take for granted. Innovation always starts with that nugget of a dream. The telephone was once a dream of Alexander Graham Bell and nowadays we would be lost without it!
If it’s your dream, if it’s what you’re good at, if it’s what you love, if it’s where your heart lies – go for it! Never look back and say ‘what if’. Always look back and say ‘I gave it my best shot’.
Don’t allow others to put/drag you down. They are only projecting their own failings and broken dreams onto you. Become resilient, become thick skinned. Cry on the inside if you need to, but the face you present to the world always smiles. There will be those who criticize, but don’t let this derail you. Focus on the positives and on the voices that sing your praises. Most of all, as I said earlier, believe in yourself.
Author and Creator of Scarygirl
E Mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can also access my blog, facebook page and twitter via my websitewww.marieannecope.co.uk