Welcome to the Chissick Chat Blog!
Following the Easter break, I’m chatting with Amelia Chambers, an author living in Ireland who loves mystery stories, Shakespeare, and Hardy, but hates platform shoes!
Amelia, welcome to my blog. Please, can you introduce yourself and tell us a little about yourself and your books?
“If reading be the food of love, read on.” My name is Amelia Chambers and I’m proud to be an independent author. I write short stories, romantic mysteries (or mystery romances) and guides to Shakespeare.
What, or who inspires you?
From my opening “quote” you’ve probably realised it’s Shakespeare. Sometimes I look to him to find a quote to get me through the day, but I am always inspired by anyone who takes a chance, a leap of faith. Even those who fail should be congratulated for making an effort.
Do you enjoy reading the same genre as the one you write in?
I grew up reading Agatha Christie and still love a good mystery, but have discovered not all mysteries involve murder. More sinister behaviour is the mistreatment of human life, not necessarily the eradication of it.
Has any of your research taken you to an unusual place?
I enjoy doing research as I inevitably learn something new. Recently I drove to the northern most part of Ireland, Malin Head, to explore the Wild Atlantic Way and came across Grianan of Aileach, a stone fort, built in the 8th century. It was spectacular and will feature as a setting in the future.
What are you working on at the moment?
I don’t like working on one project at a time, so I’m working on a follow up to Reprehensible entitled Opprobrious and guides to Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice and Romeo and Juliet. I enjoy furthering the relationships I have created in Reprehensible and The Merchant of Venice, although written over 400 years ago, is as relevant now as it was then. That fascinates me.
What are your future writing plans?
My mind is abuzz with an idea for a third novel featuring Cassie Foxwood, but it is likely to be her last. I have a great idea for the It Out series of books and I want to continue with the guides to Shakespeare, including an exploration of Coriolanus, Much Ado About Nothing, All’s Well That End’s Well and The Tempest.
Is there anything you don’t like about writing/being an author?
My blood boils when people say to me, “I could write a book”. It takes all my will power not to kick them from here to Timbuktu and back again.
Quick Fire Questions …
Tea or coffee? I drink an awful lot of herbal tea to keep hydrated. But when the brain needs a kick and the body needs a hefty shove, it has to be good coffee. A double shot latte or cappuccino, preferably served with a side of praline or chocolate cake.
Sweet snack or savoury snack? Of all the questions I’m asked this is the one I vacillate over the most. Sometimes it’s chocolate, other times it’s crisps. I haven’t yet got to grips with salted chocolate, but it may well be just a matter of time!
Real book or ebook? Couldn’t care less as long as it’s well written. Recently read Around the World in 80 Days on my ebook and loved it. Yet, a Stephen Leather novel in paperback was as enjoyable.
Cinema or DVD? DVD, DVD, DVD. As soon as I earn a million I will convert my study into a private cinema. The cinematic experience has been ruined by people chomping their way through mountains of food, the persistent interruption of electronic gadgets and worse again, the incessant chatter of idiots asking inane questions concerning the love life of the stars, the plot, the impossibility of the action, intermixed with their own mundane existence. There’s nothing better than curling up with a good movie WITHOUT INTERRUPTION!
Cat or dog? Cat. I’m saying no more. It’s a touchy subject.
Weepie or action movie? Action movie, but I’ve wept through too many movies regardless of genre.
And to Finish, What is your favourite …
Food? Calamari. Would eat it every day given the chance. Back in the day, I remember Jacques Cousteau’s crew were literally at sea for nine days and were found to be surprisingly healthy after a diet of squid and fish. It’s quite incongruous that my favourite and least favourite foods come from the sea: calamari and anchovies.
Drink? Wine. I’m not a connoisseur but I love wine. Red, white or rosé.
Movie? I’m a huge fan of Ridley Scott, have been for years. Blade Runner is one of my favourites, but then I’m a great admirer of Philip K Dick. Scott did the sci-fi writer proud with his vision of a dystopian Earth.
Book? The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. One of the best feminist stories ever written, followed closely by Wuthering Heights. Not that I’m a Bronte aficionado, but the two works are well ahead of their time. If you haven’t read them, do so, or catch up via one of the better dramatizations.
Colour? Red in every shade imaginable, including black!
Saying/Proverb? He who dares, wins. Fortune favours the bold. I’d rather regret doing something than NOT doing something. I reckon you get the picture.
Song? I gave up on music in the 1980s, thus am a fan of Madonna, Queen, Meat Loaf and The Police. Like A Virgin, Every Step You Take, Paradise By the Dashboard Light, It’s A Kind of Magic and I Want to Break Free are classics which spring to mind, but there are countless more. I resurrected The Thompson Twins’ Hold Me Now and The Animals’ The House of the Rising Sun in a ghost story I wrote recently, set over the Christmas period.
Pudding/dessert? Anything with chocolate. Chocolate fudge cake, Death By Chocolate, Chocolate Cheesecake, but I have to agree with Marco Pierre White, who said the only real dessert is Lemon Tart or Tarte au Citron.
Thanks for chatting. Just as a side note, Ridley Scott was born in the town I now live in. Our new local library even has a small exhibition dedicated to his work. Good luck with your third outing with Cassie Foxwood.
Elaine R. Chissick ~ Wife, mother, and step-mother with a passion for writing. I have three books out on Kindle at the moment and two in paperback. One is a true story and the other two are fiction novels. I am currently working on a few new projects. I’m also one of the authors who contributed to the charity book, “Look 4 Books Medley of Short Stories”
I have an eclectic taste in music, I like to cook, and I think that my cat has the most fabulous green eyes I have ever seen.
For more information, check out my website: elainechissick.wix.com/chissickchat