Thursday, 29 May 2014

Focus Friday (2): An interview with Gareth P. Jones

Focus Friday:Is a MEME started by myself aka Seraphina and with it I get to put a certain author, book, film, song, magazine or any lovely thing cross my  path in order to share it with all of you guys...

Hello everyone and welcome to a new episode of Focus Friday. This Friday I have a lovely guest over my blog; the wonderful  Gareth P. Jones who is really wonderful that he didn't hate me for forgetting to welcome him -during our one hour live interview- I was so terrified because this literally was my first live -sort of- interview. Please, forgive me Gareth. Now let's read the whole thing >>>

1.Okay here we go. When did you decide to become an author, have you always planned this for yourself?

I've always liked telling stories & I wrote my first book after university but I'm not sure I would go as far as to call it a plan.

2.Then you might stop writing one day or might not professionally?

I think I'll always write. It's the thing I like doing most & the thing I'm probably best at. I'm better at fiction than fact.

3.I think once a writer, always a writer?

Once a writer, always a writer, but who knows what I'll be writing 20 years from now. I like the idea of writing in different forms.

4.That came out of my curiosity. Now to the question I have always been longing to; Why you choose to write a dark themed/horror books?

I think there's a naturally light-touch to my writing so dark subjects act as a good anchor to that innate levity.
My Mum says my books are too dark for kids. I think they're too dark for pensioners.

5.Then you see light in the darkest place, this is Goth and it's for children and adults?

Yes. A good example of this is that Shakespeare's funniest moments are most often found in his tragedies than his comedies.

6.Do you have many adult readers or most of them are children?

You end up with adult readers because of all the parents/teachers/librarians/bloggers/other authors with an interest in children's books.

7.Then what was the best thing a fan have ever said to you?

A girl came to see me at an event at the London Museum to tell me that she hadn't liked reading until she read my book & now she was hooked.

8.That's so lovely, I believe that you were speechless.

It was lovely. It's also nice to read reviews where the reviewer completely gets what I was trying to do with a book.

9.I always get excited when I see the cover of The Society of Thirteen, what was your reaction when you saw it?
I think it's spot on. It was a new illustrator for me, and he has now done the artwork for the re-jacketed Constable & Toop.

10.Do you like the new Constable & Toop cover, it looks more creepy fun to me?

I like both covers, but I'm not the best to ask about these things. I'm very much in other people's hands about what makes a good cover.

11.Fair enough. Now, back to "The Society of Thirteen" what inspired you to write orphans story?
I wanted to write about magic but I wanted to make it feel real for me. The link between superstition, folklore & magic was my way in...

I'm not sure where Tom & Esther came from, except I wrote a Constable & Toop short story with two similar orphans (Helly & Joe)...

Sounds so Charles Dickens with a modern touch or better say revamped Victorian London.

As the book developed I began to see how the idea of powerful magic could mean so much more to a powerless underclass.

It's hard to think about that period without thinking about Dickens, but I also researched Houdini & Sir Arthur Conan Doyle for the book.

Houdini & Doyle had this ongoing public conversation about the possibilities of mysticism, which kind of bled into the book too.

13.I think all of the Victorian authors and magicians had this ongoing passion for the supernatural.

True, but Houdini who knew a thing or two about tricks, became the voice of reason on the subject, opposing Doyle's passionate belief in it.

14.Speaking of the Supernatural, have you seen a real ghost or been to a haunted house?
I am a fervent non-believer in ghosts. In fact such a dedicated cynic am I that one would have to punch me in the face for me to believe.

I did go on a ghost tour of London with Sprout (who have bought the TV rights to C&T) though and that was very interesting.

15.I don't believe in ghosts either even if I had lived in a house each and every one believes it to be haunted.

Yes, people can be very adamant. There's a lovely review of C&T from a believer who said I had very fairly represented the dead.

(My line) For me, the dead should stay dead unless they appeared in dreams then that's a real message from the other side.

16.Now, the immortal question, what is your advice for aspiring authors who aims to write a good horror dark or better say a Gothic story?

As with all writing, it's vital to make it ring true. Your readers won't believe in the world you've created unless you do.

17.You make me speechless. That advice must be an immortal quote itself.

I have no idea, but the sentences flowed best when accompanied by Dizzy Gillespie. I'm writing pirate books now so it's all sea shanties.

18.Do you listen to music while writing?

I do & the soundtrack varies depending on the book. The one I've just finished (which is about time travel) liked to be written to bebop.

19.The writing soundtrack depends on the book so can we know a song or two from The Society of Thirteen?

Generally, that was anything classical and dark. The other thing I do is write the accompanying song while I'm working on the book.

I find that helps ensure that I know how the book should 'sound'. After all, writing songs or books is all about creating atmosphere.

20. Then it will end up sounding something like Beethoven? I would love to listen to symphony of The Society of Thirteen.

It's not quite a symphony The Society of Thirteen Trailer  .

This made the final minutes of the interview because he had to get Romanian currencies for his school visit next week. I am so sure those children will enjoy his visit.

I am so sorry it been so long interview. Just who is your favorite author and favorite book?

It's fine. I've enjoyed it. I'd say Douglas Adams' Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy was a book which had a big influence on me.

I said that "I would love to thank him for his time answering my too long questions. Also that I was so scared and shaking to start this interview; I would love to welcome him to my blog for future interviews."
 I know this made none scenes but he was so nice and answered me:  

Thanks for a lovely interview. Good luck with the blog and thank you for supporting my books. Gareth...

About Gareth:
1.According to his twitter "Author of books mostly read by children on subjects such as Ninja Meerkats, Victorian Magic, Ghosts, Death and so on. Ukulele player & occasional TV producer."

2. He wrote too many novels for children among them:

Ninja Meerkats series.
The Dragon Detective Agency series.
The Considine Curse.
Constable & Toop.
The Thornthwaite Inheritance.
The Society of Thirteen.
Space Crime Conspiracy.

The Dragon Detective Agency: The Case of the Missing Cats was shortlisted for theWaterstone’s Book Prize.
The Thornthwaite Inheritance was shortlisted foreleven local book awards and won seven of them.
The Considine Curse was voted Blue Peter Book of the Year 2012. 

Twitter     Website       Email     Goodreads

Share with the world:


  1. Nice interview, I've been meaning to do one of these but am way way to nervous! But maybe someday. I like the sound of these books, two twins trying to kill each other, ha ha how many siblings haven't wanted to do that.

    1. Thanks so much. You should try interviewing an author; it's so much fun when it's live because you will end up forgetting all the questions.

      I am sure you will love his books deeply; I myself have been trying to kill my sisters since ages lol.


Designed by Beautifully Chaotic