Please welcome today’s guest on Peachy’s Insights, Claire Plaisted, the author the Garrett Investigation Bureau series. Welcome Claire, I am so glad you were able to join us today.
GP: Claire, tell us a little about yourself, where you are from and what you do for fun when you’re not writing or reading.
CP: I actually consider myself a Kiwi which is the nickname for a New Zealander. I have lived here for most of my life now. However, I was born in Britain (should have been Wales) where I grew up in the small and historic town of Sandbach. Today Sandbach is one of the top ten places to live in England. Anyway. I decided to be adventurous and travel to New Zealand on my own at the age of 21 where I met my future husband. Talk about a long distance relationship and obviously no internet in those days. We married and had four children, sadly losing the youngest to various congenital conditions. We live in Rotorua, which is surrounded by lakes. The town itself is in a volcano crater which is still active. It’s a bit like living in Yellowstone Park.
I love researching family history. This is something I have been doing for 15 yrs. I have made several family history books, one of those being my best seller. I like talking to people, and I’m very creative which I’m sure helps with my writing. Swimming and going for walks are a favourite thing to do. The beach is only an hour away.
GP: I’ve only recently become interested my own family history. It is quite interesting to learn of your roots.
I know that authors are avid readers as well. My resident author calls it research. Tell us some your favorite authors and books and why?
CP: C S Lewis. A A Milne, Elizabeth Goudge, The Grimm Brothers, Rudyard Kipling and many more. I adore the Narnia Series by C S Lewis, its most definitely a book for children of all ages. I still read it today. Winnie thr Pooh is well loved with his stories and songs. I have my dads book he was given to him by one of his sisters as a child. The Just So Stories is another amazing book, my favourite story was “How the elephant got its trunk.” With the Grimm brothers I read the original fairy tales, some are really scary, and certainly not portrayed as they are today. The story I settled down with at night as a child was “Valley of Song,” sadly out of print now though a wonderful fantasy story any young child would enjoy.
GP: We seem to have some common reading interests, I’ve read most of those authors in my lifetime. We read A.A. Milne and Narnia to our kids when they were growing up. Now the grand kids are enjoying those same books.
I’ve read the first two of the Garrett Investigation Bureau series, but I think readers would like to hear from the author a little about the series. How would you describe the series? How many books are in the series and are there plans for any more?
CP: I wrote book one and two and then for some reason came the prequel, which is about Malachy Garrett’s father. It is a journey into how Garrett Investigation Bureau became a business and why. The story covers high class prostitution and genetic, never mine the evil mind behind them. There are three more books after the prequel all are different. Book 3 is called Hidden Slaves this continues the investigation into slave rings. Book 4 is Secret Assassin where an evil doctor finds a way to wipe minds. The latest book is Double Crossed. You first meet Jones in book one. The novel journeys through his first six months at GIB and how he changes. The book includes paranormal elements and time travel. At present there are two more books to go. The original idea was to write a book about each of the new agents who began working at GIB. During that time the books have spread out to include the Security Staff as well.
Garrett Investigation is a family business who gets involved with various cases quite by accident. They all seem to have secrets, some which they never knew about, others so well hidden Malachy Garrett never finds them when he does his security check. Fast paced and twisted, they are set in the USA and written in British English.
GP: What other books do you have published and could you tell us a bit about them?
CP: My other books:-
Diary of a Psychotic Killer – a mixed up diary which does repeat due to her wandering mind.
Fred the Evil Incarnate – An adult fantasy which is mildly erotic
Charlie Girls First Summer Christmas – a novella based on what my youngest daughter may have been like if she’d survived.
Zoe’s Journey – A mixed children’s fantasy with the gods, trolls, dwarves etc taking over earth.
As Beth Bayley:-
His Billionaire Woman
The Engagement (Jessie)
I have a short story in “Awethology Light called Enchantments, it is a Fantasy for teenagers to enjoy. I also have 5 books to release this year and two anthologies I’m included in – fingers crossed I get them all done.
GP: Authors have different stories about how long they’ve been writing. Tell us about the defining moment when you felt you really are an author in your own right.
CP: I literally fell into writing in 2011. Bored with waiting for Family History Information for a book I was making I opened a Word doc and started writing a historical romance. I sent the first three chapters to two friends in the UK. They wanted sex scenes….oh the blushes…took at least 6 months to live that one down. One of my friends pointed me in the right direction to help improve my writing skills. Yeah it was messy, though for some reason it flowed rather well. This particular book is still a draft work. I hope to publish it this year. Well a writer was born or should I say a beginning writer. I think I first felt like an author when I held my very first printed book in my hands. It is truly an amazing moment.
GP: Typically when is your most productive writing time and where do you do most of your writing?
CP: I don’t have a most productive time. I write when my fingers tell me or when my muses scream at me. There isn’t much I can do. I don’t plot. It’s like my fingers have been taken over by someone else. I do toss ideas around with friends and I know I have two books which wouldn’t be written if it wasn’t for one of those friends.
GP: What do you find most rewarding and most frustrating about the entire process of getting a story to publication?
CP: Editing. It certainly isn’t my strong point. I have mixed English which doesn’t help. The difference in grammar in the different countries is also a downside. I tend to write in British English and Grammar. I have improved in leaps and bounds though like anyone else something can be missed.
GP: What was the best advice you ever received about writing and publishing and who gave you that advice?
CP: Best advice. Remember your novel isn’t a book until it is formatted, edited and has a great cover. Enjoy learning how things are done or find someone you can afford to do the work for you or with you.
GP: Just for fun, what is your favorite food? Do you have a memorable story that relates to that food?
CP: I don’t have a favourite food. Though I do have lots of memories with food stories at the dining table with the family where we all crack up laughing for no apparent reason or for a rather rude reason. I have a nutty and adorable family. Jokes are Us….lol Growing up my own family were just as..err Good. Especially my sister who would start giggling for no reason…and slowly, one by one we would all start laughing with her only for one of us to stop and ask “What are we laughing for,” which of course made us worse. Calming down she’d tell her story and set us all laughing again.
GP: Readers want to know more about you and your books. Would you give us links where can you and your books be found?
www.plaistedpublisinghouse.wordpress.com There is a book link with my books linking to amazon.
www.billionaireromances.wordpress.com Pen name is Beth Bayley and links to three books available on amazon.
https://kayleighbroughtonshistoricalromance.wordpress.com/ Pen name for my Historical Romance – not yet published.
All my books are on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Tolino, Inkstra, Apple Scribd. Apologies I lost all my links when my computer was wipes and I’ve not yet collected them all again.
GP: Thank you again for joining us today Claire. It has been a pleasure having you here.
CP: Thank you for having me. Its been fun to chat with you.
GP: Readers please click on the links and check out her author pages and books. Check here again this Friday for my reviews of the first two in the Garrett Investigation Bureau, Hidden Secrets and Secrets Past.