I have been writing ever since I can remember. As a small child I would compose stories for my grandmother to read. She was a school teacher so I thought she knew everything about what made a good story.
Once at school myself, I always liked my work being chosen to be read aloud to the class. I loved to be able to share my imagination and hopefully have an effect on others. I was quite shy then so this was a good way to be heard.
My dream was to be published and be a teller of tales on grand scale. All of my early efforts were rejected by publishers, and rightly so. It took years of practice and experience to put together a book that did justice to what I had in mind.
Self-publishing sped up the process and this latest novel is my sixth in print. I spend around eight months actually writing. The next three months are spent reviewing, get proofs read, corrections and the whole launch and promotion process.
When I’m not working, I spend time with my family. We love sport, movies, board games and holidays.
The Dominion is an epic fantasy trilogy. The first two are published and I’m working hard on the third.
I wanted to tell a story that had a great history that was about to go through a dramatic and terrifying change. The dominion of Ordefima, run by a court of leading intellectuals, has been peaceful and ritual-based for seventeen centuries and the war of the past has passed so far into the myth that it is considered to be just a tale of morality.
When the ancient enemy resurfaces, fearful creatures of great proportion and special gifts, we see events move very quickly. The main character is Rupert, youngest son of the Marquis, who is kind-natured, honest and well liked. He has to struggle to prove himself but soon finds plenty of opportunity in the ensuing crisis.
Rupert has a strong with his sister Socha, who is revered by the people as the bringer of fertility to the lands. Unfortunately, her magical power makes her a target for Gaticus, leader of the enemy.
The books follow the challenges the dominion must face, the disarray and dismay at having to return to violent ways, and Rupert’s personal saga as a young man thrust into the limelight.
I have set up a separate website dedicated to the trilogy The Dominion Club where you can find more information and a list of characters and places. Those who join up to my mailing list will receive extra stuff and I intend to give them access to ‘side stories’ about characters we meet during the series.
I have a very strong relationship with my wife and two boys so it is important not to sacrifice any of that with my work. So, you need the discipline to set out definite times for hard graft and separate occasions for leisure and the essential parts of life that make it tick. I need to be very organized.
I have a study to work in and hang a toy bear on the outside door handle which tells everyone not to disturb me (unless there is a real emergency!). I also switch off all social media and my phone so that I am not distracted.
Music is important to my emotional and creative development and I have a large collection which I have playing in the background while I’m writing. Sometimes this will be specific and relevant to the subject matter and at other times I put the whole lot on random and let my mind tap into small details that help the story along.
Initial plot development and themes are written with a fountain pen and ink as I find this makes me feel more creative. Chapter outlines I do in pencil with lots of rubbing out and changing. Then I use Scrivener to put it all together.
Writing is my main occupation now and I hope to develop it more. This will depend on profit margins. As my books get better known, I’m hopeful sales will increase. I can’t think of a better career!
I am currently reading The Silmarillion by Tolkien. This is a dense piece of work and I love the level of detail he has achieved that makes Middle Earth feel like a real place. I am aiming to emulate that with the Dominion series. Big shoes to fill!