30 June 2011

Getting to know you Thursdays with Anne Hamilton with giveaway

Today I have another aussie author on my blog. Today we welcome Anne Hamilton to my blog today. I read Multi Coloured Realm this year and found it interesting. My review is blow this post.

1. Can you tell us a little about yourself?
I’m an Aussie, born and bred in the Sunshine State (though I’m wondering if it should be renamed the Watery State of late). I taught high school mathematics for 30 years before making the transition to my present calling – I edit the Australian editions of the devotionals, The Word for Today and word4U2day. I’m also the current president of Omega Writers.

2. When you were a child did you have a favourite book or books?
I just loved Andre Norton’s books. I took them out of the local library again and again until a new librarian catalogued them into the adult section so I couldn’t get at them. I also loved Knight Crusader by Robert Welch and most of Rosemary Sutcliff’s books.

3. Do you have a favourite Genre to both read and write?
Tricky. I love writing fantasy and I used to read it voraciously. But I don’t read it so much these days. I’m still catching up on quite a few of Madeleine L’Engle’s books, though. I found that getting the sort of books I am interested in is well-nigh impossible in Australia, so I embarked on an adventure with internet ordering. That led me to find a treasure trove of non-fiction, mainly in the areas of Hebrew thought, ancient catastrophes and the mathematics of Scripture and medieval poetry. It sounds a very strange brew but they reflect the end of several long journeys into a particular interest of mine: the meaning of names and how those meanings affect what both identity and destiny.

4. Did you have favourite authors growing up who have influenced you?
I came across CS Lewis in my very late teens and immediately wanted to write another Chronicle of Narnia, as countless people have before me. I could just feel those missing stories calling. However, I think I have been more influenced by George MacDonald in terms of writing, as well as Madeleine L’Engle. In my thinking, I think the greatest influence has been Os Guinness and Ted Peters. (Jenny here I loved the Narnia series I even tried to go through my wardrobe I read the series many times)

5. When did you know you wanted to be an author?
I remember starting a novel when I was about fourteen. I still recall most of it, even though I destroyed it. The story seemed to be taking over my thoughts and, in making the hard decision to stop writing and get rid of what I had already done, I realised how much writing meant to me. However I think I wanted to write from about the time I was eight when I created some illustrated Marine Boy cartoons.

6. How did you go about becoming an author?
I wrote. Badly at first and better now. I went to courses and wrote some more. I kept submitting work until it was accepted. My recently-published novel, Many-Coloured Realm, took 27 years to find a publisher.

7. If you were not a writer what would you like to be?
It took me almost five decades to achieve my goal of becoming a writer. Along the way I tested the calling by giving up writing for a whole year to see what would fill the (not inconsiderable) time available. Nothing did. So I’m sure there’s nothing I’d rather be.

8. Outside reading and writing what do you like to do?
I am involved in prayer ministry with a wide variety of people. It’s wonderful to be an instrumental part of seeing a life transformed under God’s hand.

9. Do you have a place you love to visit or would love to visit?
I love New Zealand. I lived there for several years and it would be fantastic to go back permanently to the South Island. I visit the friends I made there every few years.

10. If you could have a meal with 3 living people who would you choose and why?
Mike Baillie, the dendrochronologist (someone who studies tree rings) because I have so many questions to ask about ancient catastrophes
Os Guinness, author and Christian apologist, because again there are so many questions to ask
David Howlett or Ed Condren, both scholars of medieval literature – well, because there’s so much I want to ask about mathematical design in ancient poetry.
My mum says I was born asking ‘Why?’ but I’m sure she’s wrong. I waited at least a week or two.

Finally can you tell us about your current books and/or any that will
be coming out soon. Also where we can find you on the web.

My most recent books cover a wide variety of genres. My publisher mentions from time to time that I should build a consistent audience instead of hopping around, but then gives in anyway!

My latest work is a children’s picture book – Terry, the adventures of a Terek Sandpiper. The illustrator’s work is just exquisite. The story was her idea. It’s about wader birds that fly from Siberia to Australia each year and the mammoth journey they undertake when only a few weeks old. (Jenny Here this sounds so cool will look out for it.)

Late last year, Even Before Publishing released my book about names and how they affect our identity and destiny. It’s called God’s Poetry and many people mistakenly think it’s a book of poems. It’s actually about how your calling is determined by what you are called. Ephesians 2:10 tells us that ‘we are His workmanship created in Christ Jesus for good works…’ and the word usually translated ‘workmanship’ or ‘masterpiece’ is from the Greek word for poetry. Many Christians never come into their destiny and I’d reached the stage after three decades as a maths teacher (what could be further removed from writing?) that maybe I wasn’t ever going to be what I felt God had really called me to be. In coming to understand the spiritual dynamic that was blocking my way, I wrote this book. I was delighted recently when it was a finalist in the International Books Awards in the same section eventually won by Rick Warren.

Many-Coloured Realm was also a finalist in the International Book Awards 2011 in the fantasy-scifi category. It’s a children’s fantasy and it’s recently got some really great reviews. It’s also gone into about 3000 schools across Australia. (Wow that is so cool about the 3000 schools across Australia. I am sure it will be popular).

Anne has kindly offered a giveaway to one commenter. If you are from Australia you will receive a copy of Many-Coloured Realm and a copy of God's Poetry. If you are overseas Anne is happy to send a copy of "The Singing Silence". To enter please leave a comment answering the following question: Did you have a favourite fantasy series you read as a child?  Leave a way for me to contact you if I don't already have your details. You have til Friday July 8th at 6pm South Australian time. 


Ariella said...

Hi, thanks for sharing your interview with Anne, it was wonderful to read - always nice to be introduced to a "new to me" author!

As far as fantasy series I loved and still do the Narnia chronicles. It's wonderful now to see them being done as movies and bringing new and revived interest to the series; but while the movies are good the books themselves are so much more enjoyable. The power of imagination at work and such a strong Christian focus as well *cheer*

Paula Vince said...

I've got all these books and they're all amazing in their own right.

Wyn said...

How wonderful to read about an Australian author. Thanks for the interview. You know I don't really remember "fantasy" as being a genre when I was little, other than Guilliver's Travels or the fiction of sea-faring stories of the Napoleonic Wars and they were more adventure than fantasy. Do you count Alice in Wonderland as a fantasy?


Anne Hamilton said...

Thanks, Jenny, for the opportunity to participate in your blog! Wyn, fantasy is very old - in fact, long before "fiction" existed as a concept, there was fantasy. EE Nesbit, George MacDonald (who was very influenced by the German romanticists) were exponents in the 19th century, along with Lewis Carroll and the Alice stories.

Ausjenny said...

Thanks to all for commenting I know more have visited as I gained a couple of followers. Hopefully more will post later.
I enjoyed Alice in wonderland too. Also the storys of King Arthur would be what I call fantasy. As a child the magic faraway tree stories were books I read so many times the books were almost falling apart.

Adam Collings said...

Nice interview.
I just finished reading Many Coloured Realm yesterday. Great book.
Nice to see you supporting the Australian Christian fiction industry with your blog

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