Debi Michelle

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Where were you born?

I was born and bred in Yorkshire, which is basically the Highlands of England! 😉 Great community spirit and amazing scenery as well as some fantastic history spots! Plus, we eat fish and chips the proper way… With mushy peas!

How old are you?

I turned 29 a few days ago but I look about fifty. LOL. The joys of so called invisible illnesses. 😉
Debi Michelle photo

How long have you been writing?

I don’t remember when I started writing, only that I started reading and it can’t have been long after that.  My brother taught me to read after hearing my Mum say I was having trouble.  We later found out that I’m dyslexic so my Mum gave me writing tasks to do that helped me get control over it.  I would read books and write my own reviews then one day I just decided to write my own story. I don’t recall how old I was but I remember it was about a puppy

How did you know you wanted to be a writer?

It’s just something I always felt.  Like it was my purpose and not something I ever had to consciously acknowledge because I always knew it was right. I’m not sure I can explain it any better than that

Do you have a ritual you perform before you start writing?

Not really.  An idea comes to me and I write down the general gist then come back to it when I have the time but other than that, it’s just putting pen to paper

Do you type, record or write your books out?

I used to write by hand at first as I found it easier on my muse, but as my disabilities have taken over I’ve found it too painful so now I type.  It’s harder on my flow but it’s easier on my hands so I chose the lesser of two evils

What genres do you write?

My main genres are erotic and comedy. I do sex and sarcasm better than anything else, but I also write Pagan themed non-fiction, something I’ve been working for a long time, but haven’t had the balls to get published

Who or what inspires you to write?

Everything! Life! Most of my characters are based on people I know and I think that helps me to be more realistic in my writing. I often read books that are fantastic but that are let down by the unrealistic dialect and reactions of the characters.  Authors need to pay more attention to how people act and speak rather than just manipulating the characters into doing what they want. I hope my characters flow better than that, even if it comes at the cost of my story. I’d rather go for realism

Are the stories in your head screaming to come out?

I have characters railing at me day and night to put them to the paper, like I have all the time and energy in the world to cater to their every whim! It’s a shame that I don’t, their whims are much preferable to vacuuming and laundry!

Are you married?

I am. Married for almost eight years to my Superman. He’s an ex-soldier and a source of endless inspiration for my more…Juicy…Scenes.

Here’s one of my hubby to show just how bloody yummy he is!

Picture of hubby

Do you have children?

We have three children, two girls and a boy.  Our oldest already wants to be a writer and spends hours writing short stories.  She’s also dyslexic and, like Mummy and like Nanna, isn’t letting that stop her; that’s right, my Mum is also an author!  SD Stevens, check her out if you like fantasy! 😉

What did you do before writing?

Before writing there was nothing but nappies and bottles.;) But I was also a singer before ill health forced me into early…Very early… Retirement.  I spent years ignoring my ailing health and performing all over the country at charity events to raise money for various military charities but I had to give even that up. *le sigh*

Are you a full time writer?

I’m not a full time anything, except tired. Lol. My illnesses mean that I often can’t do anything but stare into space, too tired to move yet in too much pain to do sleep. The joys, oh, the joys!

If not, what is your day job?

I spend the spare time I have volunteering for the Pagan Federation (England and Wales). I am their National Disabilities Manager and a Local Coordinator. I have an amazing team of Disabilities Liaisons to work with who make it all so much easier and a community to serve that make everything worthwhile. We organised the world’s first Online Festivals, gathering etc…. Our first festival was May 2016 and we reached over twenty thousand people. It was an emotional and amazing time and each one is better than the last!

For the readers that don’t know your work, what have you written?

My first novella is Debi’s Naughty Nibbles follows Rachel and Danny, two very different people who have almost have sex many times but never quite managed it because bad attitudes and inflated ego’s always seemed to get in the way! One day Rachel loses her temper and decides to teach playboy soldier Danny a lesson but he turns the tables on her and teaches her a lesson

Debi's Naughty Nibbles Teaser

How do readers go about ordering this book?

Order link:  http://tinyurl.com/jp8gue3

How do readers get in touch with you?

You can get in touch with me on Facebook! Debi Michelle! I have a page and a profile and I’m also on Twitter, all with the same name. I have an email address too but that tends to be for professional stuff rather than just chats with folk! 🙂

Debi Michelle’s Facebook Page:  https://www.facebook.com/debimichelleofficial/

 What do you have in the pipeline in terms of the next book?

The next book is going to be much more in depth.  The first book started as a series of sex scenes that I wrote in a few minutes to entertain some military wags.  Their husbands were on a particularly difficult tour in Afghanistan and I could bear the thought of them being so anxious so I tried to take their minds off it!  They begged me to finish the story and get it published so I promised I would.  I took the sex scenes and glued them together with sarcasm!

The next book will go into the back story and is a little more intense. I’m hoping to highlight the realities of domestic abuse in dedication to my little sister and many others who have been hurt by the people who claim to love them

What illness do you have? (you refer to it often)

I have a list of mental health issues as long as my arm… And a leg! And possibly an extra foot! Including depression, several OCD’s, a panic and anxiety disorder, a social anxiety disorder, various phobias, PTSD and other annoyances! I also have Fibromyalgia, Hypermobility joint syndrome and am recovering from SPD which is basically where my pelvis fell apart when I was pregnant and when it went back together, because of the Hypermobility, which causes low muscle tone, it went back wrong and the nerves are all wonky and catching things. It’s a literal pain in the ass!

How does it impact your life?

I use a wheelchair about 50% of the time and crutches about 10% because of the pain and the fatigue. I’m recovering from agoraphobia so going out is very difficult and I still can’t leave the house alone.

I was a singer but had to stop due to the mental health issues but I tried to keep doing charity concerts. Now, because of the fatigue, I struggle to sing at all and it’s a loss that has broken my heart

How is it treated?

You can treat the mental health issues in a number of ways but for me, personally, I use various forms of meditation and exposure therapy. I have a drug phobia so I can’t take any medication, which means I also can’t take pain killers for my physical illnesses. I often get people saying to me that i can’t be in that much pain or I’d get over myself and take medication… But to those people I say; if you were in agony and someone offered you a pill that COULD take the pain away but it wasn’t 100% guaranteed BUT if you took it we could guarantee a heart attack… Would you still take it or would you put up with the pain? It’s a proven fact that panic attacks mimic heart attack symptoms and many people are hospitalised because of this. My panic attacks are so severe that I black out and often end up hurting myself further by falling so instead of pain killers I choose to keep the control. Which often means I’m even more tired because doing things through a fog of pain is exhausting. Most of the time the wheelchair is used because I’m so exhausted that I fall over when trying to walk. I used to be embarrassed about it but now I try my hardest to raise awareness instead by being as honest as possible to show people the realities of invisible illnesses and mental health issues. I even recorded myself having a panic attack for one of the online festivals I already mentioned

How does it impact your life?

I use a wheelchair about 50% of the time and crutches about 10% because of the pain and the fatigue. I’m recovering from agoraphobia so going out is very difficult and I still can’t leave the house alone.

I was a singer but had to stop due to the mental health issues but I tried to keep doing charity concerts. Now, because of the fatigue, I struggle to sing at all and it’s a loss that has broken my heart

How does your family deal with your writing?

My family is very supportive, although my husband calls it porn. Lol. Only my sisters and mum read the books and I’m sort of glad about that as they’re not the sort of thing you want your nan reading!

Favourite book?

This one is really difficult to answer! I adore the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon. Since being diagnosed with Fibro I’ve really struggled with my concentration and that series gripped me so much that the fog disappeared for the week or two it took me to read the six or seven thousand and odd pages of her saga!

I also adore Anne O’Brien. I’m a big history nut and her historic fiction has been my favourite for years. Plus she always releases her books near my birthday! 😉

Nancy Affleck Mackenzie wrote one of my favourite books, Queen of Camelot, which is the book I was reading when I met my husband. I’ve read it once or twice a year every year since we met. The only books I’ve read more than that are the Harry Potters!

Obviously I love my Mum, SD Stevens’ books. I swear, she should be bigger than George RR Martin! Her books are Lord of the Rings meets the Valkyries!

Favourite song/band?

My favourite band is Queen but my favourite singer is Dame Vera Lynn. My favourite song changes constantly but at the moment it’s I’m Beginning To See the Light by Dame Vera or Verdi’s La donna è mobile sung by Pavarotti and Sutherland

Favourite TV Show?

Gilmore Girls! Definitely! But I also love The Big Bang Theory, Jane the Virgin, the White Queen, the White Princess, GoT’s, Downton Abbey and loads of others

What is your favourite movie?

Quartet! Best. Movie. EVER! It’s so cheeky, relaxing and everything I love!

Favourite female actress and male actor?

I’m not sure I can name even just my top five. I love so many for different reasons

Anything else you would like your readers to know about you that I haven’t already asked you?

I hate mushrooms!