Here comes the carpet, making a wobbly landing and here’s Beck Robertson, another of my Crooked Cat pals.
Waves madly and stumbles off the carpet looking a bit dazed and windswept. Hi, sorry I know I’m a bit late but I took the opportunity to see the local sights for free. Saves on transport costs you know? That carpet’s a bit unreliable, though. Twice I almost got stuck suspended over the wrong cottage. I only realised it wasn’t yours when I looked at the sign, Gin and Bread Cottage. Honest, I wasn’t tempted to hop off at all I swear. I’ve eaten quite enough bread over the Christmas holidays.
First off – what would you like to drink?
Can I have some ruby port? I usually drink wine but I’m still in the festive mood. And I think port’s a bit stronger than wine which is good for the spirit isn’t it? I do like a nice stiff drink on social occasions. Just as long as it’s not that cheap Tesco value stuff as it can be a bit vinegary on the teeth. I don’t want to be talking with most of the skin removed from my lips for the rest of our chat, that would never do.
Perish the thought – we have some great port from the local shop. Have to admit I’ve had a nip or two over the festives!
I’d love some smelly strong cheese to go with the port if you’ve got any, maybe a nice Stilton? But since this is Bingerbread cottage I think it would be rude not to ask to binge on your gingerbread as well, as I’m sure it’s quite lovely.
Here’s the cheeseboard, all kinds of local cheese and some Roquefort which is even smellier than Stilton! Now, let’s start with your books – do you write under just one name or several? How many genres do you cover? How much have you had published including anthologies etc?
I write under my real name, Beck Robertson for paranormal romantic suspense, and mystery/ crime thrillers, and also under a variation of my name, Bec R. Robertson for my YA urban fantasy series, The FallenTrilogy.
That’s about three main genres I think, and my faves to write in, though I have dabbled in others. I’ve completed four novels and had two published. Blood Hunger, a paranormal romantic suspense, was published by Totally Bound, and One By One, a psychological crime thriller, will be released by Crooked Cat Books in March 2017.
I’m currently indie publishing Fallen Heart, the first book in my YA trilogy, and have the second book The Descent all written with plans to release that myself in Spring 2017. But if the right publisher came along I wouldn’t say no! I’m not above a bit of blatant pleading with publishers. Subtlety was never my strong point.
As for other work, I’ve also had a regency romance novella published by Xcite, and have indie pubbed a prequel novella for the YA series, the book’s called Before The Fall. Oh and I’ve had a short horror story of mine featured on The Midnight Circle podcast, narrated by an actor. That was quite fun.
How long have you been writing professionally? I imagine that, like all of us, you wrote all your life before “turning pro”.
I’ve been writing fiction seriously since 2013 but before that I trained as a journalist and worked as a copywriter, an occupation which I still work in to pay the bills today. I actually really enjoy my copywriting work, I enjoy anything that involves me getting paid to write. I think I’m just grateful I get to do something I genuinely love for money really.
For years before I actually sat down to write my first novel I dreamed about it and wish I hadn’t procrastinated so much about it now. But I console myself with the fact that in the four years since I started writing fiction, I’ve averaged out at about a novel a year, plus four novellas, and a pile of short stories that are currently sitting on my hard drive. So I’ve been fairly productive, though could definitely do with a kick up the bum sometimes.
Journalism AND a really productive author! Wow, I’m impressed. What was your first published work? Short story, magazine article, poem?
My first published work was an article in the Hammersmith and Fulham news covering a local non-profit radio station. I was working as a trainee on work experience at the paper at that time and was over the moon that I had a byline. I bought about 8 copies of the newspaper and kept looking longingly at my name in print.
(woodpecker laugh) I still do that! What are your ambitions / hopes for your writing career?
My ultimate dream is to pay my bills solely by writing fiction and also for more people to read (and hopefully enjoy) my work. And I think it would be totally amazing to have things happen like people dressing up as characters from my urban fantasy novels, that would be something I would fantasise about late at night definitely. That sounds a bit strange actually doesn’t it? Maybe you shouldn’t publish this?
Hrmm, moving on, regarding my work, I want to focus on just one or two genres for now, and plan to write another crime thriller in 2017, followed by the start of a fantasy series aimed at adults. Fantasy and crime are two of my favourite genres to read, so it’s only natural I love writing about them too.
Now on to you, the author. Where do you live and with whom? Describe a perfect day at home for me. (Where else have you lived?)
Currently I live on a houseboat with my wonderful partner of over a decade, Steven. I lived in London for years but now I live near the Hebrides. We do plan to relocate to London again sometime in the next five years. It’s beautiful where I am now but I miss London, I know it’s a bit filthy and smelly but it’s almost like it’s part of my DNA.
When I was growing up I lived in a small town in Essex. The place was quite conservative at the time, so I was definitely the weird kid there with my left wing politics and penchant for dressing like a goth. I think it’s got a bit better now, as I left when I was about 25 which was over a decade ago.
Ye gods! I lived aboard a boat for six years and I’m still a Goth at 60! High five, sister!
A perfect day for me would be getting up and browsing the news and having a chat about what’s going on in the world with my partner over a steaming mug of coffee. Then, a fry up, followed by a productive morning writing, and then I think dinner in a nice restaurant followed by a film, or maybe a trip to the ballet.
People wouldn’t necessarily expect this from me as I look a bit punk but I’m a secret ballet fan. It probably comes from training as a dancer when I was really young, it stays with you. So do the memories of the dance teacher screaming at you to clench your buttocks tighter I suppose. Going to the movies might be nice too because there’s something about the atmosphere in a cinema that’s so exciting to me. I’m not a huge fan of clubs though I used to enjoy them. I’m probably showing my age (37) now!
Do you have a “day job”?
Yes, to pay the bills, I’m a copywriter. Basically I create the copy in all those really annoying pamphlets, flyers, sales letters, and emails that spam your inbox or get shoved through your front door. Sorry about that, It actually is still quite creative, in its own way. There’s a certain art to copywriting, so I would never dismiss it. Plus of course, it can be fairly lucrative, which can be remarkably persuasive.
Outside of writing and any other work, what is your main passion (greatest pleasures?)
Food. And reading. I read absolutely everything, even the back of cornflakes packets, and am always endlessly researching new subjects I’m fascinated by. Reading is my ultimate pleasure but I am also partial to the odd glass of wine or three. If I had to choose between reading, alcohol , or a really good roast dinner, reading would win every time, though I admit I might be thinking about the roast a bit while I was doing it.
Tell me two or three interesting facts about you that I haven’t asked.
I’m transsexual so I’m kind of a Mr Ben figure in that I went into the closet as one thing and came out as another. I don’t know if anyone reading this remembers Mr Ben on tv but I loved the way he went into that wardrobe and came out as a different character. That’s probably quite a strange way to describe being transsexual I know but then I am quite strange.
Hahhaha – and I’m gender queer so we have something else in common!
Another fact about me that I suppose could be quite interesting is that I have a total obsession with Tudor, and to a lesser degree, medieval history. In particular the Tudor period though, I consume everything Tudor, from books to bad to shows.
It’s actually an incredibly rich period in history though I think my obsession has now gone to new extremes as I’m coercing my partner to accompany me to a Tudor recreation in full costume this summer. It’s going to be quite funny to see people’s reaction to a pierced transsexual rocking aTudor minstrel’s outfit I think.
Finally and most importantly – Bio and links please.
I’m a 37-year-old mystery suspense and fantasy author, moonlighting as a professional copywriter so I can afford my own port and cheese. Sometimes I fantasise about living in Tudor times but then I remember they had no internet and didn’t take regular baths and quickly change my mind.
I’ve written a fantasy series aimed at young adults that‘s full of angels, demons, and magicky type things, called The Fallen Trilogy. You can get the first book in the series free by signing up to my mailing list here: http://beckrobertson.weebly.com because I’m nice like that.
My latest novel One By One is published by Crooked Cat and will be released on March 23rd. If you like twisty crime thrillers written by transexuals with multiple facial piercings you might enjoy it. Stalk me on
Due to hassles, Beck has changed her social media settings. She will be in touch soon
Thanks so much for being here today, here, have some more port and we can finish the cheese while we continue a bit of chatting.