Kindle Author Interview: Sibel Hodge

Sibel Hodge, author of Be Careful What you Wish For, discusses her book, her writing process, and offers advice about self-publishing on Kindle.

[She was previously interviewed on this blog for her earlier novels, Fourteen Days Later, The Fashion Police, and My Perfect Wedding.]

DAVID WISEHART: What can you tell us about Be Careful What You Wish For?

SIBEL HODGE: Armed with cool sarcasm and uncontrollable hair, feisty insurance investigator Amber Fox is back in a new mystery combining murder and mayhem with romance and chicklit…

Three deaths.
A safety deposit box robbery.
The boxing heavyweight champion of the world.

Somehow, they’re all related, and Amber has to solve a four year old crime to find out why.

As she stumbles across a trail of dead bodies and a web of lies spanning both sides of the social divide, it’s starting to get personal. Someone thinks Amber’s poking her nose in where it’s not wanted, sparking off a game of fox and mouse—only this time, Amber’s the mouse.

Amber’s forced to take refuge in the home of her ex-fiancĂ©, Brad Beckett, and now it’s not just the case that’s hotting up. So is the bedroom…

All Levi Carter wanted to be was the boxing heavyweight champion of the world, but at what cost?

All Carl Thomas wanted was to be rich, but would his greed be his downfall?

All Brad Beckett wants is to get Amber back, but there’s a reason for the ex word.

Be careful what you wish for…you might just get it.

DAVID WISEHART: How do you develop and differentiate your characters?

SIBEL HODGE: They just fall out of my head and take over on their own.

DAVID WISEHART: Who do you imagine is your ideal reader?

SIBEL HODGE: Anyone who loves a light, fun read. Life is about living and laughing. After all, laughing keeps you young! Engrossing yourself in a good comedy is an excellent way to de-stress from our hectic lives. My novels are quirky and screwball, and a good way to escape reality for a while.

DAVID WISEHART: What was your journey as a writer?

SIBEL HODGE: Crazy, scary, fun, exciting!

DAVID WISEHART: What is your writing process?

SIBEL HODGE: By the seat of my pants! If I get too hung up on plotting in advance I lose my creativity. It just starts to flow as I write—most of the time!

DAVID WISEHART: What authors most inspire you?

SIBEL HODGE: So many indie authors have inspired me recently.

DAVID WISEHART: What one book, written by someone else, do you wish you'd written yourself?

SIBEL HODGE: Bridget Jones's Diary—then I'd be pretty rich right about now!

DAVID WISEHART: How have you marketed and promoted your work?

SIBEL HODGE: Tweeted, blogged, Facebooked, begged. Getting featured on fab sites like yours, David!

DAVID WISEHART: Why publish on Kindle?

SIBEL HODGE: I came close to being traditionally published a few times but it never quite worked out. So the way I saw it, I had two choices. Either I could write another book, hone my writing skills and learn all I could about my craft, and wait for an opportunity to come up, or I could let all the rejection letters get me down, think my writing career was over before it had begun, and stick my head in the oven! Since heat tends to turn my curls into a ball of frizz, it was no contest, really! I haven't looked back since.

DAVID WISEHART: What advice would you give to a first-time author thinking of self-publishing on Kindle?

SIBEL HODGE: Go for it! but make sure...
  • Get your manuscripts edited and critiqued professionally before you publish them. I think this is invaluable to a newbie (or indeed any writer) for producing a top quality novel.
  • Avoid too much backstory early on. Only introduce what is essential for the reader to know at exactly the time they need to know it. I know when I started writing my debut novel, I wanted to add a lot of backstory  in the first few chapters. You need to tease the reader. Give them a bit of intrigue and work in the backstory bit by bit to show little revelations along the way.
  • There are plenty of online forums and blogs that give a vast wealth of information to newbies looking to become an indie author. We've all been in the same situation when we were starting out and the Indie author community is very helpful. I’ve learned so much information from them in the last two years, and knowledge is power!
DAVID WISEHART: Thanks, and best of luck with your books.


Sibel Hodge has dual British/Turkish Cypriot nationality, dividing her time between Hertfordshire and North Cyprus. She is a qualified personal trainer, sports and massage therapist, and writes freelance feature articles on health, fitness, and various lifetyle subjects. Prior to this, she also worked for Hertfordshire Constabulary for ten years.

Her first novel, Fourteen Days Later, was short listed for the Harry Bowling Prize 2008 and received a highly commended by the Yeovil Literary Prize 2009. It is a romantic comedy with a unique infusion of British and Turkish Cypriot culture. Written in a similar style to Sophie Kinsella and Marian Keyes, Fourteen Days Later is My Big Fat Greek Wedding meets Bridget Jones. My Perfect Wedding is the sequel to Fourteen Days Later, although it can be read as a standalone novel.

The Fashion Police is her second novel and was a runner up in the Chapter One Promotions Novel Competition 2010 and nominated Best Novel with Romantic Elements 2010 by The Romance Reviews. It is a screwball comedy-mystery, combining murder and mayhem with romance and chick-lit—the first in a series featuring insurance investigator, Amber Fox. Written in a similar style to Janet Evanovich and Harlan Coben, The Fashion Police is Stephanie Plum meets Myron Bolitar.

Her third novel is My Perfect Wedding.

Visit her website and follow her on twitter.

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