Interview With....Ailsa Abraham
Written by
Lisa Dyer
August 2014
Written by
Lisa Dyer
August 2014

n a two part Interview With....I’m really pleased to have with me Ailsa Abraham, author, motorbike rider, healer and otter person.

Ailsa Abraham retired early from a string of jobs, ending up with teaching English to adults. She has lived in France for over twenty years and is married with no children but six grandchildren. Her passion is motorbikes which have taken the place of horses in her life now that ill-health prevents her riding. She copes with Bipolar Condition, a twisted spine and increasing deafness with her usual wry humour – “well if I didn't have all those, I'd have to work for a living, instead of writing, which is much more fun.”. Her ambition in life is to keep breathing and maybe move back to the UK. She has no intention of stopping writing.

Part One - Otters, singing loudly and Iamo

Otters, Ailsa? Give me the down and low.

I just love them. They are one of my totem animals and my shaman name is Otter (Ottie to my friends)

They are rather adorable but what is a ‘totem animal’ and is it something we all have?

The answer is maybe – those of us who follow a nature based spiritual path usually do but I think if people find themselves drawn to a particular animal so strongly, then it must be their totem. We tend to share the nature of our totems. Otters are playful, resourceful and have nimble paws -well, need I say more?

I think we mainly have spiders in Tickle Belly Alley…they like the greenery! So, for the benefit of the readers can you please introduce yourself and give us your top five, all-time favourite tunes to rock out to at Bingergread Cottage.

Bat out of Hell – Meatloaf, Since You Been Gone – Gillan, Hi Ho Silver Lining – Jeff Beck, The RAF March (yes, I know) and anything by Era.

Good choices – especially #2!! Would you say you’re most definitely a rock out chick?

Yes but what I sing out riding my motorbike is Non Nobis Domine. Go figure!

Ah…a prayer of thanksgiving. Do you and the Badger ever dance around the kitchen in your jim-jams to any of these?

No, we're more likely to be me singing something and us leaping about to it with wooden spoon/saucepan accompaniments.

Have you ever been caught singing by the postman? My postie unfortunately caught me belting out ‘Gordon is a Moron’ by Jilted John once!

The neighbours are quite used to us being totally weird. We get away with it by being foreign.

Now, down to business. Give us a quick fire, back page style blurb about your novels?

Alchemy – when the answer to terrorism, war and dependence on dwindling fossil fuels seems to be the abolition of formal religion, everyone is relieved but soon an ancient evil returns to menace this Utopia. Who will be able to save the situation?
Shaman's Drum – reunited to work together again, can Iamo and Riga win the right to be together permanently when they don't know who they can trust? They get help from the most unlikely sources including an undercover Christian Granny, three energetic goths and a motley crew of hedgewitches facing an old and probably deadly enemy.

Sounds fab…I have Alchemy on my kindle ready to read so I will definitely be getting Shaman’s Drum.

You’re a Wiccan, is that correct? was this influential in your choice of plot and, for the uninitiated, how would you describe wiccan – is it a religion or a core belief system?

I WAS a Wiccan, which is a more structured form of Nature-based religion. For some it is too organised and hierarchical. It has bosses and set times to meet and forms of words. The plots came from my lifelong studies of all religions, not just pagan ones.

If you had the chance to hang out for one day with one of your characters who would it be and why?

It would have to be Iamo because he is obviously my ideal man, cerebral but sensual, a thinker, lover and warrior. A spiritual being with a great physique.

He sounds divine…but he must have some flaws. Come on…spill the beans on his darker side!

In the beginning, Iamo can be a bit po-faced and over-thinks everything. He's rather stiff and starchy (a typical product of his class) but he begins to thaw out under Riga's knockabout teaching.

Do you write to a plan or do you find that your plots and/or characters make like rabbits and things get out of hand?

I usually start off with a general plan but my characters tell me when I'm getting it wrong. I write in patchwork, scenes that come into my head and then sew them together to fit the original plot, although the finished work sometimes bears little resemblance to it.

Aah…I can totally relate to that. I do the same thing.
Between you and me….have you ever gone out with your slippers on/clothes inside out/back to front?

Slippers? Too often to remember. Once walked the entire length of Causewayhead in Penzance with my skirt tucked in my knickers and my backside showing.

Haha…yeah, been there, done that. I went out once with five pencils tucked into my ponytail. I wouldn’t have minded so much but I’d been looking for the buggers all day!

So, you’re a Crooked Cat…have you written anything you really love but haven’t been able to get published?

Not so far. In another genre and pen name I'm published by another company but although I have loads more ideas I haven't had any “failures” yet. YET, fingers crossed!

Would you care to share about your alter-ego writer?

I write under the name of my twin brother Cameron Lawton who was still-born. I resurrected him because the other genre is gay detective fiction set in the Military Police. The murder mysteries are fab but some of my other readers are put off by the fact that it is two guys. If it were a TV detective series, the Inspector, and her male sergeant ended up in bed, nobody would turn a hair – I'm very pro-active in the LGBTQ rights movement.

There we have it...Part One of Interview With...Ailsa Abraham. If you would like to know more about Ailsa and her writing please visit the links below.

Part Two coming in a few days time. Stay tuned!

As Ailsa Abraham :

Shaman's Drum published by Crooked Cat
(nominated for the People's Choice Book Prize)

Four Go Mad in Catalonia – self-published, available from Smashwords



Amazon Author Page

Web page

As Cameron Lawton

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