Author Interview - C.S. Harris
Author I draw inspiration from: James Lee Burke. His descriptions of people and places are so lyrical, so magically evocative, that he always leaves me in awe.
Favorite place to read a book: I read for relaxation last thing at night, curled up in a comfortable armchair with one or more of my (many) cats. On weekends, I love reading on the porch swing of our lake house. It overlooks the water and is surrounded by trees that echo with birdsong.
Book character I’d like to be stuck in an elevator with: Lymond, from Dorothy Dunnett’s incomparable series. Not only is he a fascinating character, but he’s clever enough to get us out!
The moment I knew I wanted to become an author: I was 20. I’d just read a couple of truly awful paperback historical romances and said to my mother, “I could write a better book than that!” She said, “Why don’t you?” So I tried it. The result was a mess, but I enjoyed it so much that I tucked away in the back of my mind the idea that “someday” I would become an author.
Hardback, paperback, ebook or audiobook: Hardcover. I love the old fashioned feel of a hefty book in my hands, and I like having substantial editions of my favorite authors on my shelves. Probably because I read sitting up in a chair, I don’t find them uncomfortable to hold.
The last book I read: Carl Jung’s Synchronicity.
Pen & paper or computer: Pen and paper. I used to compose at the computer, but then Hurricane Katrina wrecked our house and I had to write a book while living a vagabond existence for 11 months without anyplace to set up my computer (I didn’t have a laptop and don’t like them). I found I loved writing by hand so much that I’ve stuck with it. Recent studies have shown that the tactile stimulation from holding a pen actually enhances creativity, so it’s not my imagination.
Book character I think I’d be best friends with: Hero Devlin. I love her—although I suspect she’d get a tad impatient with me.
If I wasn’t an author, I’d be a: I’d probably still be a history professor. I do miss it sometimes.
Favorite decade in fashion history: The 70s. The early years of the decade were fun without the crazy excesses of the 60s. And then, after the hems dropped around ’75, the clothes were truly elegant and beautiful. (For women. We won’t talk about the men’s.)
Place I’d most like to travel: Hmm. That’s hard to narrow down. I’ve traveled and lived all over the world, but there are still so many places I’ve never been or would love to go back to. I’d probably say Malta.
My signature drink: Tea. I know. Boring.
Favorite artist: Fra Filippo Lippi. I fell in love with his work at age 21 on my first trip to Italy as an adult. I have other favorites, but there is something about Filippo Lippi’s paintings that makes them seem to speak to me personally across the centuries. Take that however you wish!
Number one on my bucket list: I don’t actually have a bucket list. But one place I always wanted to see from the time I was 8 or 9 is Machu Picchu. Unfortunately, I’ve recently developed asthma and can’t tolerate high altitudes, so I’m really frustrated I never got around to visiting it earlier.
Anything else you’d like to add: Just thanks so much for all you do!