Thursday 25 February 2021

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Soulla Christodoulou - Author

A Cup of Conversation with James Hampson

Hello and welcome to A Cup of Conversation where I am joined by author James Hampson who has released his first book One Last Time after starting on it seven years ago. He also has a wonderful connection with Liverpool FC Military Veterans team which is run by the LFC Foundation, the clubs official charity, which he shares with us in this A Cup of Conversation interview and shares his to-do list with us! So let’s have a chat with him now.

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1. When did you start writing creatively?

Around seven years ago, I started a draft for One Last Time; I changed a lot of the story and introduced a new main character around 2017 as James Shaw wasn’t even in the original draft or even that character. I wrote song lyrics when I was younger along with short stories, but nothing on the scale of a full novel. I am currently writing my second in the James Shaw series and plan to do 12 in total, all standalone books so they can be read in any order.

2. what did you enjoy reading as a child?

The likes of Goosebumps by R.L. Stine and of course Harry Potter when that came out, I enjoyed the Charles Dickens Classics too.

3. Describe your book One Last Time in six words.

Fast, action packed, thrilling, romance and sun.

4. Your book One Last Time takes the reader to Seville in Spain. How did this location for your book come about?

It is one of my favourite places, and formed part of my early twenties. It is the ideal setting as it has small narrow streets, great architecture, lots of green spaces and it is hot. It is a romantic city, which fits into the romance part of the story.

5. Have any of your own experiences been woven into your novel One Last Time?

My knowledge of the city that is all I can think of. Probably more subconsciously.  But I am unable to think of anything that I can divulge.

6. Can you share an extract from the book and tell us why you chose this particular part of the story.

“Nineteen miles away along the banks of the Shatt-Al-Arab River, Royal Air Force Intelligence Officer Flight Lieutenant James Shaw squeezed the trigger of his Sig Sauer P226 9mm into the side of Saudi Born Terrorist Ali Bin Rashid’s Head, spraying blood and brain matter into the air like a red and pink mist. Shaw grabbed the manila envelope he had given Rashid moments earlier out of his now limp hand and tucked it inside his Osprey Body armour along with the envelope Bin Rashid had given him in the earlier exchange; he kicked the body down the bank into the smooth flowing river, holstered his weapon and climbed back into his Land Rover.
Ibrahim Kasim witnessed this from across the river and pulled his Mobile phone out of his pocket to make a call.”

This is from the first chapter; I chose this as I think that it gets the reader hooked straight away, well hopefully anyway.

7. You have been invited to be a part of the Remembrance Guard of Honour at Anfield recently. How did that come about?

I served in the Royal Air Force during the Iraq and Afghanistan campaigns and now play football for Liverpool FC Military Veterans team which is run by the LFC Foundation, the clubs official charity. We were invited as guests of the club for Remembrance Sunday to honour those who have lost their lives in service.

It was a great honour and to be on the pitch was fantastic I took a few photos of the occasion and it is a moment I will forever treasure. Liverpool beat Manchester City 3-1 too which was the icing on top of the cake for a great day.

8. What has been most challenging in writing your story and why?

Writer’s block, sometimes I would just look at the page and not know what to write. I would shut the computer down and go and hit some golf balls come back and be fresh and ready to go again.

9. Which three aspects of the writing journey have you improved on since you first began your writing career?

Learning how to edit and proofread

Character development

Writing slow parts fast and fast parts slow.

10. What advice would you give a new writer? 

Write what you want, and from the heart. Get those words down it doesn’t matter what they are, it can always be polished up when you have finished. Enjoy it, there is no better satisfaction than typing the words The End.

       11. Are you a planner or a pantser?

A bit of both, I make plans in my notebook but more often than not the characters take it on their own and they develop the story in their own way, which I enjoy

12. What three things are on your current to-do list?

Finish my second book

Publish a small children’s book before Christmas

Keep improving my fitness.

 

Thank you for joining us James and I wish you all the best as you work on your children’s book! Exciting times! It’s been wonderful learning more about you as a writer. Readers, if you would like to link up with James you can do so on his links listed below.

Until next week, Happy Reading, Happy Writing, Happy You.

Big hug, Soulla xxx

Links:

Twitter: @Jameshampson7

Instagram: @jayhamps28

Amazon link to books: https://www.amazon.com/One-Last-Time-James-Hampson-ebook/dp/B07W3W1K4P/ref=sr_1_1?crid=10Z93WXP1E4TV&keywords=one last time james hampson&qid=1574164172&sprefix=one last time james,aps,216&sr=8-1

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