Gotta Write: First of all hello from the other side of the world. It’s wonderful that you’ve reached out to Gotta Write’s readers. Before we learn about your latest title, we’d love to learn about your life. Where in Australia do you live and have you always lived there? Tell us about your family and your writing life.
Faye: I live in North Queensland, Australia and have my whole life. The town I live in is a small sugar cane farming district with a few cattle farms. I am married with 5 school kids and 4 adult step children so my writing life is very much ‘where and when I can’.
Gotta Write: When did you start this series “Sins of the Virtuous” and what’s its general theme?
Faye: The original plan for “Sins of the Virtuous” was planned over ten years ago and it was just going to be a rural, historical romantic take on the seven deadly sins. About two years ago my husband suggested maybe adding heavenly virtues into the story lines. I’ve been working on the series ever since.
Gotta Write: Do you focus on a single time period or family?
Faye: I don’t tend to focus on a single family, though some minor characters do find their way into every story. I do focus on a single time period though. All the stories either take place or end up in Jarvisfield, Queensland in 1871.
Gotta Write: In “Apathy & Vigor,” introduce us to Tristen Brone and explain how he lost everyone he loved.
Faye: Tristen Brone came from a wealthy family and was essentially set up for life, but then one night he was caught in a fire trying to rescue his best friend. He was left scarred and alone, having lost contact with all those he’d been close with, he ends up on a downward spiral of self destruction.
Gotta Write: I can understand how that would be difficult for anyone to carry on. But then Amalie Fergus turns up on his doorstep. How important was she in his past and what is she running from (without a spoiler)?
Faye: Amalie was the love of Tristen’s life and he had planned to marry her, but when he didn’t hear from her after the fire, he assumed she blamed him for the death of her brother. When she turns up on his doorstep, he is suspicious because he knows about the mystery surrounding her last employer.
Gotta Write: How has her life seemed to crumble into a million pieces?
Faye: Her brother died in the fire that left Tristen so badly scarred. Not long after her father suddenly died, all her family’s properties were repossessed and she was left with no one and nothing.
Gotta Write: Is she being forced to do something to further damage the life of a man she once loved?
Faye: Amalie ran into a man from her past the night her employer was murdered, and he offers her protection on one condition – that she returns to Tristen to steal some property papers.
Gotta Write: Do you know how many more books you’ll write in this series? Then what’s next?
Faye: There’s going to be seven books in total. After that I plan on writing a few stand alone titles as well as release a short book containing poems and ditties I wrote in high school.
Gotta Write: What was your path toward publication like?
Faye: Bumpy lol. I was lucky that my very first script got picked up straight out of high school. But only a few months later the company went bankrupt. The next publisher I had started off great but then there was some dispute between the brother and sister who owned the company and my contract was cancelled. I was then picked up by another company that had been around for a few years and though things were great at first, there has been some disputes over payment of royalties and dodgy contracts. The publisher I’m with now is great though. Very supportive of us authors and our work and they pay on time too.
Gotta Write: How do you promote your books? What has really worked for you and what got you little attention? What tips can you offer writers today?
Faye: I’m willing to give anything a go to promote my work. I love doing blog spots as I’ve met so many wonderful people through them. I do find that social media like Facebook are already flooded with authors advertising their work so that hasn’t been very successful for me. The trick is to persevere and not give up as a writer. Sooner or later all your hard work will pay off.