Fi Phillips and Haven Wakes
Fi Phillips is a fantasy author. Her debut novel, Haven Wakes, is the first in the Haven Chronicles.
The year is 2110. Everyone has their own robot, and magical worlds are just behind the next door…
Steve Haven always thought he was just another ordinary twelve-year-old boy. Well, as ordinary as he can be given that he’s the nephew of Rex Haven, founder of the globally successful Haven Robotics Corporation.
But when Rex dies in mysterious circumstances and Steve is given a strange artefact known only as the Reactor, he finds out that the world he thought he knew is a lot stranger and more threatening than he could have ever imagined.
On the run from a group of dangerous villains, Steve finds himself plunged into a hidden world of magic. With his parents missing and no one in the normal world he can trust, Steve must join with his new-found magical friends to discover the truth about the Reactor and his uncle’s death.
Haven Wakes is the debut novel by Fi Phillips and the first in The Haven Chronicles, an exciting and enthralling journey through new worlds, both futuristic and magical.
Let’s Place Fi Under the Spotlight!
Tell us a little about yourself and your books, including the genre(s) you write in.
I’m a fantasy author and real-life copywriter living in North Wales, just over the border from Chester. I spent what seems like a lifetime in office jobs until motherhood and my husband’s career moves tugged me into self-employment and helped make my dream job a reality.
My debut novel, Haven Wakes, was published by Burning Chair in October 2019. It’s a futuristic fantasy novel – think magic and robots – where 12 year old Steve Haven finds himself plunged into a hidden and dangerous world of magic to solve the mystery of his uncle’s death, keep a mystical artefact known as the Reactor out of the hands of dangerous villains, and ultimately save himself and the world.
What project are you working on now?
I’m writing the novel that comes after Haven Wakes in the Haven Chronicles series.
Steve and his newly-found magical friends must face the consequences of their actions and begin an even bigger, farther-reaching adventure.
How do you choose the genre(s) you write in?
I’ve always loved magic, fairytales and mythology so fantasy was an easy genre to choose, but I didn’t want to set my stories in an imagined past.
Fantasy in the here and now or the future appeals much more to me. For instance, the Haven Chronicles series is set in the twenty second century.
Is there any particular author or book that’s influenced you, either growing up or as an adult?
Growing up, I read a lot of fairytales and mythology but the author who influenced me most back then was Roald Dahl with his wry take on life.
As an adult, I’ve taken inspiration from Stephen King, Neil Gaiman, Sheri S Tepper, Clive Barker and Mary Shelley.
Is anything in your books based on real life experiences?
The community spirit and characters of Darkacre, a community of magicals that you’ll find in Haven Wakes, was very much based on the people I grew up around. I’m incredibly lucky to have met so many colourful individuals with a love of life.
How do you come up with your titles?
I tend to struggle with book titles.
The title for Haven Wakes came from a discussion with my husband who is a wonderful person to brainstorm with.
Book 2 of the Haven Chronicles is currently untitled. I foresee a brainstorming session with my husband and my publisher.
Do you have any hidden talents?
That’s an interesting question.
I can bend the top joints of my fingers without bending the main middle joint – is that a talent?
You’re hosting a literary dinner party, which four authors would you invite (alive or dead)?
You can probably predict my answers from what I’ve said already, but it would have to be:
• Mary Shelley,
• Roald Dahl,
• Sheri S Tepper
• and Stephen King.
What words describe your writing process?
Flexible. Stop-and-start. Tense. Dialogue-led. Morning-based.
Which would you rather do: Never write another story or never read another book?
I’m a firm believer that you have to be a reader to be a decent writer, but if I had to choose it would be to never read another book.
What is the funniest typo or error you’ve ever written?
I honestly can’t remember any that were funny. I just tend to correct/delete and get on with the flow of writing.
How do you come up with names for your characters?
Some characters come complete with a name, like Hartley Keg from Haven Wakes.
Steve was always a Steve, and another character, Blessing, was always going to be Blessing.
For other characters, I assign names that have a relevant meaning but the name must always have the right rhythm.
Who is the most supportive person in your life when it comes to your writing?
He’s both the most supportive and the most challenging – my husband. As a creative himself, he completely understands my process and always clarifies my thinking on the task at hand.
What is your most favourite word and why?
It’s a Welsh word that I first heard when my children learnt it in school – bendigedig. It means wonderful or fantastic. I love its rhythm and cadence.
What is your least favourite word and why?
I’m a lover of words but if I had to choose a least favourite, it would have to be boring. I rarely find anything in life boring.
You can find Fi in the following places:
Facebook: Fi Phillips Facebook
Twitter: Fi Phillips Twitter
Instagram: Fi Phillips Instagram