Friday, October 7, 2011

Firsts Fridays: Author, Alberta Ross

When I began researching Alberta Ross, my next Firsts Fridays interview I was instantly intruiged by the books she has out now called the Sefuty Chronicles. Who knew through her interview I would learn of her battle with cancer, her strength endurance and that you are never to old to make your dreams a reality. Now it’s your turn. Take a dive into the life of Alberta Ross...
 I spent the first part of my adult life travelling the world, the middle years studying  and now have settled down to write.  From the first part I have endless photographs, memories and friends.  From the second I have a BSc Hons, an MA and friends.  Now in this part everything comes together.

Over the years my interests have expanded, as has my book and music collection.  A short list would include reading (almost anything) science, opera, folk, gardening, philosophy, crazy patchwork, freeform crochet, ethics, social history, cooking (and eating of course) gardening, anthropology, climate change and sustainability.

My parents gave me, apart from a love of reading and music, an interest and curiosity in everything which in itself has become a total inability to be bored and for this I am always grateful.

DB: Alberta, thanks so much for joining us for Firsts Fridays!

You are just closing your first ever virtual tour for your books, the Sefuty Chronicles.  Can you tell us a little about the ins and outs of a virtual tour and if you feel it has helped you?

AR: It is probably too soon to tell if it has helped sales at all and I don’t believe that is the sole purpose of a tour. It is really about getting your name and that of the book or books recognised in a very busy place.  I hope the Sefuty Chronicles are a little more familiar now than they were a month ago.

I do know that although it has been quite hard work it has also been such fun to do and I will certainly be taking my publications on tour again.

I began putting feelers out about the end of June and am really pleased I allowed so much time to find my tour dates.  It takes time to search, make contact and arrange times, dates and subjects.

A couple of things were not strictly according to plan due to the vagaries of e-mails, time zones and misunderstandings but all that meant was the tour started early, four weeks instead of three, and that a couple of days were unexpectedly empty but others were amazingly full.  Next time I might check up more often before each date to be sure we’re in the same place but, considering I am not known for my organisational skills, it all panned out just fine!

DB: I agree the most important part is getting your name and book out there. I’m glad it’s working out for youJ For those interested in getting your little hands on her books, she is having a giveaway on her site. I will have more details after the interview.

You are an indie author with three books under your belt.  Can you tell us why you decided to go this route and the pros and cons you have experienced so far?

AR: Well I had started the traditional route but then was diagnosed with cancer and suddenly felt very vulnerable. 

DB: I’m very sorry to hear this.

AR: After the operation I got to thinking that maybe my life was too short to wait the traditional wait for publication so went indie instead.  I had a book and I wanted it published.  As it turns out I had the third all clear last month so maybe I did have time!

It was hard work as I had very limited computer skills and I have struggled with putting up websites and blogs, with joining places, finding places, there is so much ‘stuff’ up here!  I have enjoyed learning all the new skills I’ve accumulated and this year am feeling more at home up here.  From the isolation of being a writer now I have a huge amount of support and goodwill as we all struggle together.  It’s great up here.

DB: I love how you say “up here” when referring to the gathering place of us writersJ

Do you see yourself continuing down the indie road or ever shooting for the traditional one?

AR: Oh no, definitely indie for me.  I like the complete control I have and I have never been happy with others telling me what to do.

DB: The Sefuty Chronicles sound really interesting!  How did you come up with this futuristic idea?

AR: They were an exercise in short story writing which went slightly wrong!  They are fed by my interest in climate change and genetics, in fact by so many of my interests right down to felting, a hobby of mine.

I have worried about the effects we are having on our planet for a couple of decades now and although I think the worst case scenarios won't happen in my lifetime, lets face it there’s not so much of that anyway, I do worry over the coming generations.

The Chronicles are a vision of my worst fears and also because I have great faith in humanity and feel it will survive; the Chronicles are a vision of my hope.

DB: This is so very inspirational...except the part that you don’t have much life in you. You sound to me to be going for the long haul.

Are there more books to this series?

AR: Jack’s Tale, out this month, is the third of the series and then I take a break and prepare my second collection of short stories, these are for my ‘friend from forever/editor’ who prefers them to the Chronicles.

In NaNo next month, which I try for the first time, I am trying a new genre.

However, I have at least two more Sefuty Chronicles planned in great detail in my head.

DB: I must say, you have me very eager to read your books and I love a long series!

Last question and this is just for fun...

Tell me anything.

AR: I learnt to read before I was five.  Thought it would be nice to write a book.  I have devoured thousands of books in the six decades since.  I lived inside those books, brought the characters inside my head and imagined new exploits with them; I was the one wandering around lips moving – you know the one, the oddball having a conversation with herself!

DB: Oh yea! I was that odd ball and now my daughter does it tooJ

AR: I belonged to countless libraries around the world, spent most of any money I ever had on buying more books, hoarding as well a squirrel.  Thinking it would be nice to write a book.  My new abode is crammed to the rafters and removal men hate moving me!

I scribbled a few stories in my early teens but, despite those silly dreams of one day becoming an author, continued on my alternative paths.  Now in my mid 60s I am here.  I am an author.  My books are in the county library.  A little late in the day but here and enjoying every minute of it.

The moral of the tale:  everything happens in its correct time so never give up on  silly dreams and catch yourself a ‘friend from forever/editor’ to help you!

DB: You gave me cold chills!

Thanks for being here Alberta! Good luck to you as you finish out your book tour.

AR: Thank you.

DB: And finally for those interested in The Sefuty Chronicles, Alberta, can you give us the details of your giveaway?

AR: I am running a give away during the tour.

2 winners of draw will win an e-book edition of

The first two books of the Sefuty Chronicles

Ellen's Tale and The Storyteller's Tale

3 runners up will win an e-book edition of

Ellen's Tale

 (unless already read in which case The Storyteller's Tale)

How to win

A comment on each visited host site gives you one chance to win, also on my sites on those days I am posting there during the tour
an extra entry will be given if you mention the post on Twitter or Facebook
an extra entry will be given for a mention of the post/tour on your own blog

Let me know where you have spread the word

DB: And if you want more of Alberta you can find her:

Alberta’s official website where detail of her books, extracts, readers comments and contact details can be found

where Alberta blogs about writing and self publishing

blogging about anything she fancies

a blog about books and reading

Alberta can be followed on Twitter at

Until next time...
Keep writing. Keep learning.


Angela Cothran said...

Great interview Deana. Alberta's books sound so interesting :)

Gail M Baugniet - Author said...

Deana and Alberta, Thank you for an entertaining author interview. I was especially interested in the question about the benefits of a virtual blog tour and agree that the main purpose is to meet new people. It is the journey that counts!

Deana said...

Thanks for stopping by ladies! I agree, Alberta is awesome:)

Leslie S. Rose said...

It's fascinating to hear a writer's tale. Deana, thank you for bringing us Alberta's. The indie road sounds like it is getting more and more travelers.

Kerri Cuev said...

It's nice to meet you Alberta! Great interview and I like your saying--life is to short. Congrats on your books, I'll check them out!

Lynda R Young as Elle Cardy said...

Great interview. It's always nice to get to know the authors a little better. The books sound great.

Janet Kerr said...

Deana & Alberta,
I enjoyed this interview. What I really appreciate and find beautiful are both covers. Well done!

Jan k.