Book Savvy Spotlight on I. C. Camilleri
Q1. Can you tell us a little about yourself and your book 'The Blake Curse'?
I was born on the 7th of February in Malta, an island in the middle of the Mediterranean. I graduated in Medicine and Surgery in 1993 and I moved to the UK shortly afterwards. And this is where I still live and work. Medicine and writing are my passion. The Blake Curse is my first published work. It is a psychological thriller and romance set in the beautiful city of Cambridge.
Medicine can be pretty stressful at times. Your patients become your whole life and how do you stop yourself from taking your work home with you? Some might jog or swim, others might play tennis....I'm the sedentary type and so I write. I go into my own beautiful world inside my head and craft characters and scenes. And I do this as often as I can.
I just love to mould my own world, filling it with different characters and breathing life into them. There are no such things as villains and heroes; everyone possesses that inbuilt thread of human goodness. Every villain can turn into a hero. And the converse is also true.
My medical background has exposed me to various problems in our society, namely alcohol, drugs and that disregard for the sanctity of human life. I integrated these within the storyline and I have exposed their dark side. There are subtle messages neatly wrapped inside the fictional story.
Huh, wouldn't I just love to have my three fictional male characters breathing and walking through that door! There's Ben Blake, the handsome, clean-shaven, serious and talented British Intelligence agent; Jake Snell, the rugged, sporty and resourceful rogue; and the fun-loving Nick Blake, a minor character but just as powerful.
If only I could choose! Channing Tatum would be the Jake Snell (Enrique would do too had he been an actor) Josh Hartnett or someone physically similar to him would be Ben Blake. The Mediterranean goddess Emma and the exquisitely petite Sam...well, I'll let the men decide on the female characters. And any director who brought James Bond to life would probably be best suited since The Blake Curse has a lot of similar characteristics with perhaps a larger sprinkling of romance.
I wish I could say cycling or swimming or something equally active, but I guess I can't lie. I should be promoting exercise but alas, listening to music and reading are my only other interests.
Promotion is probably one of my weakest points, but I try to adjust and learn from others more experienced than me. I had no online presence prior to publication and that was the first thing I tried to build.
I would definitely pick Twitter.
Online is my preferred promoting tool.
I have both Facebook and Twitter and I have joined sites such as Goodreads. I find Twitter the best of the three, very easy to use and there is a strong and helpful community of fellow authors and book-lovers.
Oh yes, I would hate it if paper books were to go into extinction. Nothing ever beats the feel of a solid book in hand. It gives reading that wholesome feel. But that's my opinion; the younger generation might disagree.
The romantic element might make it lean towards the female market but I've had positive reviews right across the board, young and old, men and women.
Thankfully the good by far outweigh the bad as evident from the reviews on all sites. The fast-paced original storyline, the powerful characters and the moral issues raised were the highlighted positive points. And the negative has to be the turn of phrase used on a couple of occasions, English being my second language, albeit a strong second language. However this was a minor point which most agreed did not mar the story at all.
There is a sequel to The Blake Curse. It is on its second draft. And after that, who knows...but I will never stop writing, it's inbuilt and I feel compelled to scribble down the ideas that invade my thoughts.
Write for yourself. The novel will have depth and character if truly written from the heart.
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