Tell us about yourself? How many books have you written?
So, I have written 7 books so far. The first two were Philosophical novels about a Boy who is mentored by Death and travels through time and history learning about life. These were privately published. Death was a mix of Death from Terry Pratchett’s brilliant books, and Ingmar Bergman’s The Seventh Seal. I used one Chapter, which was set in Space, in my book of short stories, Equations Of Being.
So at the beginning of 2014, I was hospitalised for a month. I was writing a lot of poetry at the time. I had written several poetry books, so that’s 9 books in total, forgot about those. I wrote a poem in Accident & Emergency about what was happening to me and that was how my friends found out what where I was. I like emailing my stuff out for feedback.
Anyway I’m stuck in hospital, can’t work, can barely leave the ward. My one advantage is I have been taught to be positive.
I have great friends who visit me every day. They talked me out of my first plan to be a professional backgammon player in Monte Carlo and Geneva. Writing this, I’m a little sad about that. I thought it was a corker.
So I think it would be a crack to make a graphic novel and go to Comicon. One of my good friends was a brilliant artist. He was too busy to do the artwork. So, I look online for a Sci Fi convention, and find Swecon, Sweden’s National Convention and book in as an author.
Well, I left hospital in February and the convention was in July. I wrote my book of short stories. My friend did a great cover for me, but couldn’t come to Sweden.
Another friend, the author and illustrator, Faramond Frie, offered to come with me and help. Good job, because I would never have coped flying to Stockholm and getting a train across Sweden with two suitcases full of books.
It changed both our lives, and like all pebbles thrown in ponds, has sent its ripples out in to the ‘Verse.
Our adventures sparked off Revenge Of The Hrym, and the books that were to follow.
What is the name of your latest book and what inspired it?
My latest book is Beano Grigio. It’s the third book in The Friendship Series.
I mentioned in a previous interview it was based on a joke. The band I am in were trying to come up with a name, and I came up with Beano Grigio. I thought it was brilliant. No one else did. Too good to waste, I made it the title of my next book.
Lucky really because it’s my best book so far.
Do you have any unusual writing habits?
What like sitting in a bowl of custard with a windmill on my hat?
I can write anywhere but I write best in the mornings, often after waking. I need time, and to be relaxed. Years ago, I could only write with a pen. Unfortunately, the writing process is so urgent with the flow of creativity, and comes out so fast, I had trouble reading my writing. That is a little troublesome, especially as sometimes individual words can be quite specific, and important.
Now I write straight into Notes on my smart phone. This is great, because I read it through, spotting errors. Then I send it to a few friends by email, both because that is satisfying, and also, it’s good to get feedback.
I will read it through a couple more times, because I enjoy it, which is good, but I also pick up a few more commas, and maybe tiny alterations, and email myself the edit.
Later I transfer it into Word, which picks up all kinds of errors, and finally into the final publishing software, ready for my proof readers.