Monday, 29 October 2012

Author Spotlight: Thomas Amo Interview & Giveaway

We are very excited about welcoming the intriguing and uber talented author, Thomas Amo onto Bex 'n' Books. And after reading our fascinating interview with Thomas, discovering more about his roots and his amazing life and journey so far, then I'm sure you'll soon understand why we're so thrilled that Thomas has joined us.
Don't forget to enter the giveaway at the bottom of our post!
1.      Tell us a bit about yourself.

The movie cast of Thomas' first play adapted for film 'Burgled Again'.
I’ve always had an interest in writing. However, it was always geared towards a show business perspective. I wanted to write for movies and television. Eventually I wrote for independent film and television. One of my brushes with professional television was for the late actor, Trinidad Silva. He was a reoccurring character on the popular NBC crime show, “Hill Street Blues,” at the time. A fellow acting friend of mine knew him well, and he hired my friend to write a pilot script to pitch to NBC. That friend asked if I could come on board as an associate writer. Trinidad graciously invited me to join the team. I was treated to three days in Hollywood of meeting people, going past the gates at CBS/FOX Studios and having the time of my life. I was 21 years old at that time. Sadly the pilot was never picked up, but the experience proved to me that this is exactly what I want to do with my life.
Thomas with Actress Linda Blair from the film The Exorcist.
Since that time, I became a full time theatrical producer and began to write comedy for live theatre. I wrote close to twenty plays during my time of owning my own theatre. While I enjoyed producing theatre and acting in comedy, writing has always been something that was for me and me alone. Acting is something you share with others, whether it’s with other actors or an audience. Writing novels is something you usually do alone.

2.      What inspired you to write your first book?
My first published novel, “Silence” was written to help me get over a girl. Imagine that. I had always been in love with all things British and Old Hollywood. This was a perfect way to blend the two things in a fictional adventure romance. So it was a girl who inspired my first novel.

3.      How did you come up with the name for your main character Hannah Richards?
That’s a great question, because Hannah isn’t a name I even like. When I think of the name Hannah, I think of Hannah from the Bible and that’s only because that’s where I knew it from. Hannah Richards is a pretty girl, but she’s a plain Jane type of girl and Hannah sounded pure to me and Richards seemed like a common everyday name, one that wouldn’t stand out in a crowd. Unlike, Taylor Monroe, one of the popular girls in the book.

  4.      We love your tag line ‘~High school is hard enough just being yourself, let alone trying to be someone you're not~’ Why is this so significant to your novel?
High school is a tough time a lot of students. They are such crucial years. It’s a time of self-discovery. Events happen that can change and define the rest of your life. Yet, often times there’s so much pressure to not be yourself. The old adage, “To get along you go along.” Sometimes students feel like they have to pretend to be more than they really are, sometimes just to survive. How a student behaves in school is predicated on so many things. What is their home life like? What social circle are they apart of? How do they view themselves?
So the thought of trying to perpetuate a façade can often times be a lot harder than it is to just stand tall and be yourself.

5.      What was one of the most surprising things you learned in creating your novels?
How much I change as a writer with each new book. When I think back to my first novel. If that had been the only book I’d written. I think I’d feel pretty flat as a writer. But after writing three, I’ve discovered new emotional experiences and character attachment. It’s hard sometimes to destroy a character’s life. I don’t mean kill them, but to take away their love, their home or passions. It’s a strange feeling sometimes, because as a writer…you are God for lack of a better term, and not necessarily a benevolent one.

6.      In Forever Me, what was your favourite chapter to write and why?
The climax in the second to last chapter. I began writing that chapter at 2:30 a.m. and  finished writing it around 4p.m. later that day. It all came to me at once and I went on a writing frenzy. About 11 hours into writing I hit a moment where I actually began to cry while writing. I had never in my life experienced that kind of emotion writing fiction. I knew I was really connected to the characters of this novel, and the fact that it hit me like it did was an amazing experience. One I’m certain I would have never experienced had I only written just one book.

7.      Have you ever done anything strange or weird in the name of research?
Oh yes. While writing book one of my horror series, “An Apple For Zoe.” I drove to the Hollywood Forever Cemetery and spent three hours walking around and looking at the graves of some of the greatest names in show business. I was writing about two famous people during the silent film era and to actually stand at their graves was surreal at best. You think to yourself, someone like Valentino is right here on the other side of that marble slab. There was a moment I found really ironic. If you stand on the main road of the cemetery you can see the Hollywood sign in the hill in one direction and if you make an about face you can see Paramount Studios on the other side of the cemetery’s back wall. Death, right in the middle of it all.

8.      What is your work schedule like when you're writing?
Like a job. Get up, brew the coffee, sit down go through the emails and social networks, then pull up the file and write till lunch. Break, come back and work until dinner time. Sometimes you need to take a walk or do something to get away from the computer screen and clear your head, I consider that part of writing work too.

9.      Do you have any writing rituals?
Only that I need music. I usually select film scores to help me find the tone of what I’m trying to write.
10.  What book are you reading now?

11.  What books have most influenced your life?
Oddly enough, books on movies or true crime.

12.  What do you like to do when you’re not writing?
Watch movies, travel, occasionally play, Rock Band.

13.  Do you have anything specific that you want to say to your readers?
I love to hear from readers. I love to know what they like and didn’t like in my stories. I listen to everything they say, even negative comments, because there’s always something I can learn from what they didn’t like.

Random Questions
1.      What’s in your fridge right now?
A severe lack of Coke! Some wine, milk, cheese, hamburger and condiments.

2.      What song do you sing at the top of your voice every time you hear it?
“You got it” by Roy Orbison.

3.      Other than writing, what special or unusual talent(s) do you have?
A damn fine British accent for a Yank. Film editor, I can’t read music but I can play the piano by just listening.

4.      Where did you last go on holiday?
Las Vegas for my third wedding anniversary.

5.      If your house was attacked by feral aliens, and they were zapping your house with their Über super bombs, what five items would you save?
1. My wife 2. Our two dogs  (I guess that means I’m down to two items) 4.My full scale life size film prop of the Lost In Space Robot from the TV show of the same name.  5.My iMac!

6.      If someone wrote a biography about you, what do you think the title should be?
“If this is show business, I’ll be in my dressing room.”

7.      If you were a comic book character, which one would it be?
Bicycle Repair Man.  (See how many of your follows get that one.)

Author Thomas Amo


Thomas in drag in the Ray Cooney farce, "It Runs In The Family"

Thomas has very kindly donated an ecopy for Kindle or Nook of FOREVER ME to one lucky winner. Just fill out the easy rafflecopter below.

If you can't wait to get your hands on a copy after reading the synopsis, FOREVER ME is currently only $0.99 / 77p on Kindle and that's for a whopping 544 pages!

Goodreads Synopsis
Hannah Richards isn't your typical 16 year-old at Wichita Falls High. Fashions, trends, cosmetics and style are unimportant to her. An avid reader, guitar player, classic movie and television buff, Hannah marches to the beat of her own drum. Visible only to her Father the town Sheriff, and her two best friends. Hannah lives a simple, un-pampered life as an "Eastie."

After coming to the aide of Taylor Monroe, a popular member of the ultra snobby "Stilettos" at school, Hannah's life beings spiraling out of control. As she starts spending more time with Taylor, her best friends abandon her, after a series of misunderstandings, causing Hannah to re-invent herself.

Hannah quickly gets caught up in a life much different than the one she knows, where status, glamour, makeup, appearance and acceptance become her masters. And what of the dark secret that haunts the streets of Wichita Falls?

Can Hannah survive the lies, deceit, jealousy and rage that are now waiting for her behind every corner? Will she succumb to the pressures of popularity? Or will she be crushed under the heels of the "Stilettos"?

~High school is hard enough just being yourself, let alone being someone you're not~

Stalker Links:
Facebook / Blog / Goodreads
Purchase Links:
Amazon US / Amazon UK / B&N
 a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Dearest Bex,
    Thank you so much for the interview, it was so much fun and I'm still smiling and laughing! :)
    Cheers, Thomas Amo

  2. I loved the interview I cant wait to read Forever Me.

    1. Thanks so much April! Totally makes my day!
      Cheers, Thomas

  3. LOL!!! Great interview! I love getting so many new insights to author's brains and how their process works! :) Best of luck to you Tom!

  4. Great interview!! Love the pictures ;) hehe

  5. What a great interview! The Random Questions cracked me up! Loved Forever Me, and I can't wait to see what Thomas Amo comes up with next! Thanks for the book love, by the way ;)


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