Scarberryfields: Can you tell us a little about your nationality/ancestry?
Robert: First Rebecca, thank you very much for doing this interview, I really do appreciate it.
I'm a dual citizen of Britain and Canada. I was born in Oxford, England and raised in London. I lived in Spain and Sweden for a while but settled in Canada and made my way slowly westward to Vancouver.
Scarberryfields: When you finished your debut novel, did you miss the characters?
Robert: I knew that I would write a sequel and that the characters would come along with me on the ride, but there is one character who dies in Junkie and whom I really, really miss. While writing the sequel, Oboe, several times I wanted to bring him back to life. Unfortunately, it's difficult to work the undead into a crime fiction, mystery novel.
Scarberryfields: While writing, if you need help with punctuation, grammar, etc., where do you turn?
Robert: I went to a school where a huge emphasis was placed on correct grammar, so I trust my own judgment. I follow George Orwell's six rules of writing, especially the last one "Break any of these rules sooner than saying anything outright barbarous." I frequently make a conscious decision to break the rules of grammar where it will add strength or impact to the writing. Although the Oxford Dictionary says that it is now OK to split an infinitive, it's one rule I never break. My characters however are real people and break the rules all the time.
I use a great independent editor, Lisa Rector-Maass, to help me with the big things and my wife and four of my friends were very helpful in proofreading.
Scarberryfields: With the number of hours spent writing, do family members support you or complain about the time spent away from them?
Robert: I have a very supportive family. My wife is amazing. I absolutely could not have done it without her support and encouragement.
Scarberryfields: Does writing benefit you in any way and if so, how?
Robert: It's not made me rich yet but hopefully that's a matter of time. :-)) It certainly makes me happy because it has become my passion.
Scarberryfields: When you’re writing, do you shut-off all social networks?
Robert: I go to the Vancouver Public Library to write, it is peaceful, quiet and provides a perfect environment for a writer. When I am writing, everything is shut off.
Scarberryfields: Did you use any family members as Beta readers for your debut novel?
Robert: My wife read draft 2 and helped with proofreading the final draft.
Scarberryfields: Do you read ebooks? If you do, and write reviews, do you have any special process you use to write a review?
Robert: I only read ebooks now. I like writing reviews because it helps encourage and support my fellow indie authors but I don't consider myself a 'professional' reviewer so I don't have a formal process. I just focus on what I liked about each book.
Scarberryfields: What is the last book called that you completed and published?
Robert: My debut novel, Junkie. I just sent the sequel Oboe to my editor, so I expect that it will be available in August.
As an aside, in the five years before I penned the first words of Junkie, I started several other novels and completed one which just wasn't good enough. Those five years were my 'apprenticeship'.
Scarberryfields: Where can readers go to find your books?
Robert: Junkie is available on Amazon in Kindle and paperback formats.