Saturday 14 April 2018

Guest Author Connie Shipley of Italy

There is a saying, “Tuscany, like a fine wine, has been some time in the making…

One of the special things about Tuscany is that our guest calls the region home. Meet Connie Shipley and enjoy her 4Q Interview.



Hi, and thanks for having me on your blog. Now what can I say about myself? I was born in Belgium, although my parents were British. Well actually dad was, but mom was Belgian and became British through marriage. I spent my childhood there and visited the UK at least once a year. Our house was full of books, history, military stuff, as my dad had been in the military and had fought during WW2. He passed the love of books onto me and he used to make up funny stories, so I guess I got the fantasy side from him.  I studied foreign languages, physiotherapy, and osteopathy. Soon after my studies, I traveled to the Middle East for work.  I was fortunate to have met interesting people and I had the privilege of attending embassy socials, as well as observing military training which was quite exciting.  I’ve done quite a bit of traveling for work and for pleasure, so most countries and locations I write about, I have visited in the past.

Today I’m married and living in Tuscany, with my Italian husband and three dogs. I’m an avid researcher, always out on the look for new ideas. I don’t quite remember why I started writing, but it was two years ago, with my first novel MoonHuntress. I created a series, so now there are three completed books. I love complex characters and the psychology that surrounds them. I always try to show the reader how my characters really are, what they think, how they live, feel, their emotions. I also love fashion, so there’s the feminine side to my books as well. I hope you enjoy the series.


4Q: You have a successful series named “MoonHuntress,” which is also the name of the first novel in the series. How did this series come about? What inspired the stories?

CS: It started out as a completely different story about a Sisterhood, but there were far too many characters, so I began to remove them. Then, after talking to some military friends and doing some research, I began to write the first draft of MoonHuntress. Now, as I said before I’ve lived and worked in the Middle East, so many characters are based on real people but of course the entire story is invented. I never really know what’s going to happen with the characters, so I just write as I go. And when I arrived at the end of the first book, I thought, why not continue, and write a series. So, I went back to the story-board, talked to military friends with their specific knowledge on tactics, weapons, strategy, and went from there. There’s also a lot of research in my books, which I love doing.  If you like action, adventure, and a dash of romance, this is the series!


4Q: In the second book of this series, SoulCatcher, your heroine is Bina Knopfler. Tell us about her.

CS: Bina Knopfler is already introduced and the main character in the first book of the series. She’s the protagonist. She’s a Mossad agent. She’s beautiful, clever, and very strong minded and determined (a bit like me, yes). But she also has her weak side, she isn’t perfect, and she makes mistakes. Life hasn’t been easy on her, and she pretty much has been a loner. But through the story, she needs to face the truth, and it’s a hard truth.
Then of course there’s romance, but you’ll have to read the books, I’m not giving out any spoilers, ha!




4Q: Pleased share a childhood anecdote or favorite memory.

CS: My favorite memory is my childhood at the beach. I think I had the best childhood ever. We used to live in a beach town. So, every summer was great fun going to the beach with my cousins. Playing in the sand, digging holes, swimming in the sea. My cousin and I used to have two bathing suits, one dry one, and one to go swimming, we used to change them every ten minutes, making our mums go crazy. It was fun.


4Q: There are three books in the series with the third called The Golden Key and all sound intriguing. Two have also been translated into Italian. What’s next for Connie Shipley?

CS: Well I’m working together with my American editor on an upcoming book, a paranormal thriller.  I’m very excited about this project. It’s completely different, very intriguing and hope the readers will love it as we explore a wing of the esoteric world. Plus, in the meantime I’m working with my Italian editor on the translation of the Golden Key. It’s a lot of work and it’s keeping me quite busy.

Once I’m finished with the thriller, I’m going to work on the final book of the MoonHuntress series. So watch out!!

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