Today we’re traveling to Nassau, New Providence Island in The Bahamas to chat with Fay Knowles. She and I discuss how being a newspaper reporter, seeking sunnier climates, travel writing, short stories, a babbling brook, and an old oak tree come together as part of Fay’s past and present writing journey.
Tell us a bit about yourself.
I am a Scottish-born writer who made The Bahamas my home many years ago. I live in Nassau, New Providence Island. I have been writing since the age of nine, penned a children’s adventure story book at eleven and won a school essay competition at age fifteen.
After leaving school at sixteen, I trained in Devon, England, as a secretary, then newspaper reporter. At the age of twenty I set off to “work my way around the world”, first emigrating by ship to Canada. I worked as a production/editorial assistant for the former Canadian Food Journal and Gift Buyer, Toronto. And then, to avoid a Canadian winter and to seek sunnier climes, I took a Greyhound coach down across the U.S. from Toronto to Miami, en route for The Bahamas.
I met my future husband Erskine in Nassau a month after that and we were married the following year. I never did “travel the world”!
As well as getting by-lines in British and Bahamian newspapers, my articles have appeared in Westward News (a former in house publication of British Telecom), the Kennel Gazette (official journal of the British Kennel Club), Christian Herald, and Sports Magazine Bahamas.
My writing assignments have included articles for Bahamas Information Services, travel writing for Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines, and as a photo journalist for Town Centre Mall, Nassau, Bahamas. I once worked as a “temp” for the late Sir Etienne Dupuch, former Publisher/Editor of The Tribune, Nassau, transcribing his long, captivating editorials.
My short stories have been published in The Lady magazine, London, England, and The Broadkill Review, Delaware, U.S.A.; with poetry in the U.K. magazine Evergreen.
Most of my short stories in Sunbeams from the Heart – A Collection of Twelve Romantic Short Stories were first published in The Lady or The Broadkill Review.
And I also have a new book of short stories “Moonbeams from The Soul: A Collection of Fourteen Provocative Short Stories”.
I drew on my Scottish background and knowledge of The Bahamas when writing my Romantic Suspense novel Love at Sunset, which is now Book One in my Buchanan Mystery Romance Series.
And my mini-memoir The Scottish Connection tells of my journey back to Scotland with my mother and young sons to revisit our Scottish roots.
My writer’s guide How to Be the Best Writer Ever! is “An informal guide and source of inspiration for new and not so new writers worldwide.”
In which genre do you write?
Mystery Romance, Romantic Suspense, Literary Fiction, Poetry and Non Fiction
How many published books do you have?
Five so far + a short story. I am currently working on another novel “Oleanders End”, which is Book Two in my Buchanan Mystery Romance Series.
When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer and what ignited your author’s flame?
At age nine I read a lovely poem about a babbling brook, which sparked the passion in me for writing!
What does your ideal writing space look like?
A desk; an office chair that gives good back support; a computer and printer; pens and steno pads; a window with a window seat and view of ocean or countryside; and a comfortable chair for reading.
What are you currently reading?
I have just finished reading “The Guest Children” by Geoffrey Bilson (The Story of the British Child Evacuees Sent to Canada During World War II)
What do you do when not writing or marketing your books?
I’m “secretary” for any of my family members whenever they need me to help with their business ventures!
What is the most surprising thing you’ve learned about yourself through writing?
That I have actually managed to get books published!
Do you journal write or keep a personal diary?
I used to keep a daily diary while growing up, but life interferes now!
What do you miss about being a kid?
Just climbing up onto the branches of an old oak tree and scribbling away to my heart’s content!
Which of your personality traits has been most useful and why?
I’ve been told by a former schoolmate that as a child I was more self-assured than most of the other students and capable of expressing negative views whereas the rest tended to be “yes-men”! I never knew that about myself. I think this trait has helped me get ahead in life.
What’s your favorite place to visit in your country and why?
Starbucks! That’s where I meet other writers and chat about writing.
It was wonderful to learn more about you and your writings Fay. Thank you for being a part of MTA! – Camilla
Book Blurbs and Where to Find Fay’s Books:
MOONBEAMS FROM THE SOUL: A COLLECTION OF FOURTEEN PROVOCATIVE SHORT STORIES
From wild temptations to dangerous decisions, an eclectic assortment of thought- provoking short stories.
Available on Amazon: https://amzn.to/2PIAgd7
LOVE AT SUNSET – A ROMANTIC SUSPENSE (BUCHANAN MYSTERY
ROMANCE SERIES BOOK ONE)
Facing imminent danger and fierce opposition to love a second time around, Violet and Gordon seek a new life in Gordon’s homeland of Scotland, thousands of miles away from where they had lived in Nassau, Bahamas, but trouble catches up with them in their little loch side cottage. In the meantime, back in Nassau an unscrupulous attorney appears on the scene, along with a crooked realtor. What they do and the extent they would go to leads to a shocking ending.
Available on Amazon as an e-book and in paperback (regular and large print).
SUNBEAMS FROM THE HEART – A COLLECTION OF TWELVE ROMANTIC SHORT STORIES
“A beautiful keepsake. Love themes in this delightful collection of romantic short stories tell of nostalgia, bright new beginnings, homecoming, second chances – and the unexpected! Heart-warming stories that propel you on a journey through Scotland, England, The Bahamas and rural America.”
Available on Amazon as an e-book and in paperback (regular and large print).
THE SCOTTISH CONNECTION: A JOURNEY BACK – MINI-MEMOIR.
“Driving long distances in a short space of time throughout the United Kingdom is the norm nowadays. However, in the seventies it was often an adventure to cover the length or breadth of Britain. In this illustrated mini-memoir Stirling-born Fay Knowles shares memories of her 1978 journey back to Scotland with her mother and young sons, to revisit their Scottish roots.”
TO BE THE BEST WRITER EVER!
An informal guide and source of inspiration for new and not so new writers worldwide- Always wanted to write a book? Or are you a writer whose career is going nowhere? This uplifting writer’s guide outlines the craft and how to become the best writer ever in fifteen straightforward and easy to understand chapters.
FUNNELS (A SHORT STORY)
Annie endures a tedious existence with her baby daughter and irresponsible casino dealer husband in what to most people is a tropical paradise. She sometimes gazes from their dilapidated porch at the distant funnels of luxury cruise ships docked in the harbour. If the wind is in the right direction, she hears the huge creatures wail, promising to take her away. She longs to escape from it all, but is tied down to eking a living with grueling double shifts in a local restaurant. When an unexpected opportunity comes along she has
to make a sudden decision. However, she is torn between her family and the prospect of elevating herself to a better life. What she decides determines their future.
Connect with Fay:
Blog – https://fayknowles.blogspot.com
Amazon author’s page – https://www.amazon.com/author/fayknowles
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/faykwrites
Twitter – @faykwrites
LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/in/fayknowles/
Instagram – @faykwrites
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