Tuesday 26 October 2021

Dawn Knox and The Future Brokers

 Today I'm talking to Dawn Knox.  We've published several of  Dawn's stories and two CafeLit serials. Dawn and I have appeared in the same anthologies together.   

 What do you write? Why this in particular?  

I write across several genres as the mood takes me. At the moment, I’m writing a historical romance set in the early 19th Century which I shall submit to be a My Weekly Pocket Novel. However, I’m also writing a quirky set of short stories about garden gnomes. From time to time, I write horror too! I don’t know why I choose any particular genre. When something piques my interest, I generally think about what sort of story would suit it best and set out to write in whichever genre it fits best.


 What got you started on writing in the first place?

I was trying to help my son with his creative writing homework and to fire his imagination. I failed miserably to inspire him but discovered I was interested myself!


Do you have a particular routine? 

No, I write every day but I usually finish my chores and then write when I can although I get up before the rest of the household and go for a walk outside if it’s light or simply walk around the downstairs if it’s dark and dictate my latest story into my phone. Later on, I tidy up the dictated text and add it to my current work in progress. 


Do you have a dedicated working space? 

Yes, I’m really lucky to have my own office up in the attic. It’s my favourite shade of blue!

When did you decide you could call yourself a writer? Do you do that in fact? 

It was several years after I had anything published that I ever referred to myself as a writer and even now, if I describe myself as such, I feel like I’m being rather presumptuous. If someone asks me what I do, I usually say I’m retired and that I like writing.


How supportive are your friends and family? Do they understand what you're doing? 

My husband and son are supportive although I suspect neither of them have any idea how much writing means to me. I suppose the best I could say is that my family consider me to be a harmless eccentric!


What are you most proud of in your writing? 

I’m most proud of my book The Great War – 100 Stories of 100 Words Honouring Those Who Lived and Died 100 Years Ago which has been a finalist in three book awards mybook.to/TheGreatWar100

I’m also proud – although still very surprised that I’ve had two plays about World War One performed in England, Germany and France.

 How do you get on with editing and research?

I love doing both and don’t have a problem with them. I spend a lot of time editing, trying to get a manuscript to be as good as I know how. I also enjoy researching and trying to add sufficient background to make a story seem as if it’s grounded in reality and really could have happened.


Do you have any goals for the future? 

I don’t have any specific goals for the future, other than to keep writing and to try different genres and styles.


Which writers have inspired you?

I love Sir Terry Pratchett’s writing – so cleverly funny and often completely absurd. I’ve probably taken away a little bit of all the books I’ve ever read. Some writers have inspired me, whilst from others, I’ve found things I want to avoid.


And now tell us about your new book specifically: 

I’ve written a book with fellow writer, Colin Payn called The Future Brokers . Colin had the initial idea and invited me to join with him. We started writing just before the first lockdown, so most of the writing took place with us communicating on FaceTime and via email. Here’s the blurb:

It’s 2050 and George Williams considers himself a lucky man. It’s a year since he—like millions of others—was forced out of his job by Artificial Intelligence. And a year since his near-fatal accident. But now, George’s prospects are on the way up. With a state-of-the-art prosthetic arm and his sight restored, he’s head-hunted to join a secret Government department—George cannot believe his luck. 

He is right not to believe it. 

George’s attraction to his beautiful boss, Serena, falters when he discovers her role in his sudden good fortune, and her intention to exploit the newly-acquired abilities he’d feared were the start of a mental breakdown.

But, it turns out both George and Serena are being twitched by a greater puppet master and ultimately, they must decide whose side they’re on—those who want to combat Climate-Armageddon or the powerful leaders of the human race.



Tell us about your research for this book. 

Colin and I carried out research and discovered fairly early on that as our story was set in 2050 – the near future –  real life events were catching up to what we were writing! For example, we found that a proto-type of the rescue vehicle we’d imagined and described, actually had been designed. At times, it felt as though events were catching up too fast for us to stay ahead!

What inspired you to write this?

It was Colin’s idea and I believe he wanted to write a book where Artificial Intelligence was on the side of Humanity, rather than as seen in many science fiction books, where they are pitted against each other.

What's next? 

Colin is finishing the third in his series of books about a family who own a park and I’m halfway through another historical romance, as well as submitting my short stories about garden gnomes for publication as The Crispin Chronicles. When we’re both finished, we’ll get together and plan another book, also set in the near future.

How can we get a copy of the book?

The Future Brokers is on Amazon as a paperback, Kindle and Kindle Unlimited. See it here.


Finally, what for you is the most important aspect of this book? 

I like the fact that this book is a romance but that it also reminds people that we are facing a climate crisis. The Future Brokers is an uplifting book with a hopeful ending but one that Colin and I would like to prompt people to think seriously about the future of our planet.

 A link to one of our promotional videos in YouTube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UCpnydV5dd8

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