Huge congratulations on winning your Chill Award! You must be so happy that your work has been recognised in this way. Now, before we carry on, would you please introduce yourself to my readers, just in case they don’t know you already …
Thank you very much, Emma. I spent my childhood on the Isle of Wight where my mother ran a guest house during the summer months. After leaving school, where I gained a reputation for producing irreverent cartoons of the teachers, I studied modern languages then spent several years in France before holding teaching and research posts at the Open University, the University of Sussex and Nairobi University in Kenya where my family and I spent three exciting years.
On our return to England I became interested in teaching adults, and eventually became a Principal Research Officer at the National Institute of Adult and Continuing Education in Leicester.
I have published a number of books on education under my full name ,Veronica McGivney, and am now happy to concentrate on writing fiction (under the name V K McGivney). I have published three novels and have been short-listed for several short story awards.
I have three grown-up children and live in a leafy area of Brighton
So, your book has been awarded with a Chill with a Book Readers’ Award, what inspired you to write this story?
Inheritors of the New Kingdom was inspired partly by a local event (a friend of mine was woken in the night by very bright lights and witnessed from her window a UFO similar to the one I describe in Chapter 1); partly by a long-term interest in space and other planets; partly by a number of general existential concerns I have such as climate change and religious extremism
What does the award mean to you?
Like other independent authors, I often feel I’m sending novels off into an immense black void! To receive this kind of recognition is a great boost and encourages me to carry on.
What other titles have you published? Tell us a little about them …
My debut novel, Aftermath of a Murder (which also won a Chill Award) is a psychological thriller about the impact on a family of a mysterious murder. After Howard Armstrong is gunned down in the street by an unknown assailant, the police uncover facts about his life that his widow, Karen, was completely unaware of. Although each revelation hits her like a seismic shock, she is determined to prevent her children from learning the terrible truth about their father.
My third novel – A Reluctant Hero – is a comedy thriller that follows the fortunes of an unhappy middle-aged man after the loss of his job and break-up of his marriage. Harry Saunders is resigned to a bleak future until a sudden and unpremeditated act of courage propels him into a succession of sometimes dangerous but ultimately life-changing situations.
Are you working on a new book? Tell me about that …
The Day You Left is another psychological thriller. I am into the fifth chapter.
When not writing, what can you be found doing?
Painting (in oils, acrylic, watercolour); playing tennis and gardening (when a painful back condition allows), and reading of course.
Which three authors have most influenced your journey to becoming an author?
Gosh, that’s a hard one. I read voraciously and love a number of different genres. My favourites are Robert Harris (I particularly like his novels about the Romans and the one he wrote about the Dreyfus case in France); I love Hilary Mantel’s Tudor novels and wish she would bring out the third of the trilogy. So I’ve obviously been influenced by historical novels written as thrillers. And Khaled Hosseini. His third novel, And the Mountains Echoed had me in tears both of emotion and admiration
Why did you choose the genre you write in?
For me it’s more like genres (pl). I don’t choose, they choose me! When I start a book I’m never quite sure how it’s going to turn out.
Which other genre would you chose if you had to change?
Quick fire questions …
Twitter or Facebook?
Tea or coffee?
Marmite – yes or no?
Early riser or sleep in?
Pj’s or ‘normal’ clothes when writing?
Planner or pantster?
Book or kindle?
Book (but like both)
Pineapple on pizza – yes or no?
And finally … What is your favourite book of all time?
Probably Pride and Prejudice which I was introduced to by a teacher when I was eleven. I was absolutely knocked out by it then, and still continue to be
Thank you for joining me today and many congratulations again on your Chill with A Book Award!
An exciting new thriller.
After witnessing an extraordinary object in the sky, research student Richard Jarman learns that the greenbelt around London has been partially devastated by fire. Convinced that what he saw was responsible, he confides his suspicions to Fiona, a beautiful single mother and to an elderly nun who witnessed the same phenomenon.
As the trail of destruction spreads across the globe, Richard becomes obsessed with finding the cause. The nun disappears in mysterious circumstances and he embarks on a dangerous mission to find her. He falls into the brutal clutches of a shadowy cult whose terrifying leader, Abraham R, seems to have a connection with the spate of disasters occurring around the world.
When the planet is threatened by an even greater peril, Richard and Fiona consult a famous medium, Morgana Delph and believe they have found an explanation for what is happening. But is it the right one?
About the author …
Veronica McGivney spent her childhood on the Isle of Wight After leaving school, she studied modern languages and spent several years teaching in France before taking up teaching and research posts at the Open University, the University of Sussex and Nairobi University in Kenya where she and her family spent three exciting years. On her return to England she became involved in teaching adults, and eventually became a principal research officer at the National Institute of Adult and Continuing Education. After publishing a number of books on education, Veronica now concentrates on writing fiction – novels and short stories. Aftermath of a Murder is her first published novel and she has been short-listed for several short story awards.