Stumbling blocks


(Don’t you hate it when people begin a sentence with that? Can you imagine typing dialogue that way? Hmm… there begins a tangent to explore another day.)

The new beginning.

When I read it is almost exclusively fantasy that I pick up and yet, when I write, I can’t engage my mind to write it. I have numerous stories plotted and characters screaming at me and yet, I have had to restart any fantasy tale I touch numerous times. Am I comparing myself against David Gemmell, Terry Brookes and other fantasy writers and cutting my confidence? To be honest, no I’m not. Each opening chapter has been pleasing to me as writing but it doesn’t tick the box for how I want the story to start.

As an example, I have a convoluted saga (Kingship), that has an original plot and engaging characters. The first chapter begins with the murder of the Lord Protector who is adored by everybody. He’s a nephew of the King, a gentleman and the foremost swordsman in the land. The reader doesn’t even witness the killing, they learn of it as the second in command is woken and informed. Needless to say, there are myriad questions that arise from this action that are to be slowly eked out through the first third of the book. I’ve written that opening five times now and I know it doesn’t work.

Do I have an explanation for my discomfort with those opening words? Why is it if I write a story set here and now, the story flows for me and yet, when I try to report on the events of another world and another time, I can’t satisfy myself? I have a suspicion. I think that because my mind lives in these fantasy worlds and has since I was about eight, I know too much. I’m not trying to write a story, I’m trying to report what I have witnessed. The story is over-plotted. I’ve stripped my freedom to imagine.

Am I advocating writing without a plot? Without a plot the story will not have direction. Her Name is James, Dark Angel and Hell on Earth worked for me so what was different there?

James is set in the present and occurs in places that readers will find familiar.

The Dark Angel books are also set in the present and are set exclusively in London so the reader can identify with the locations.

Kingship is set in a fictional world. The walls of the city are yellow stone, cemented with a crude, dull tan mortar. The mortar has that cast as the local sand has a dirty appearance. The Buildings of the city are pressed tightly together with barely enough space between alleyways to permit horse drawn carts to pass each other. Narrow walkways cross as bridge-spans from rooftop to rooftop, the crenelations engineered to permit a defence should the city wall be breached.

That is an example of the issue I have. James can walk up the steep High Street toward the public house. The Commander has to stride effortlessly along the dark, cobbled walkway as he cautiously approaches the tavern. :-/

My stumbling block is I have to have to find myself a skeleton of a plot. If I put flesh on those bones prior to writing the book the body will be so bloated as to not fit through the door. Bare bones! It worked for my other books, I had plot points to head for; signpost to point my way. Either I abandon fantasy or learn to curb my imagination.

Am I alone in this? Do others live a story to such an extent they can no longer create? If you have every event consigned to memory, do you struggle to convey what you have seen?

With regard to fantasy, maybe I am not an author but an imagineer.


Taking an axe to poetry

axeThe end of my poems.

I’m killing my poetry, my erotica is nothing I’m ashamed of but I’ve come to the conclusion when I write this, it influences my novel writing. I’ve just taken the knife to Dark Angel which was written while I was also writing these poems and I’ve toned down some of the ‘naughty’ action as the book didn’t require it. From that realisation, I’ve decided these posts now will step away from what they were and become something new.

As most of those who visit these pages are writers or tied into writing / promoting authors, I’m going to look at making posts that have a bearing on the craft. I can’t say for sure what nature these posts will be but at the moment, I’m thinking they’ll relate to curiosities I encounter that pertain to writing and writers. There’ll be some rhetorical questions, some personal observations and experiences and for the most part… whatever is occupying my mind at the time.

Don’t expect a well disciplined, well plotted post. This could become random in the extreme 😉

I’ve been away

Okay, I’ve neglected this place, I can admit that. So, how about a little update?

Well, Her Name is James has undergone a transformation with a new cover.

Dark Angel has undergone the same treatment along with a slight editing revision that has hopefully removed the last of the grammar errors and has also resulted in the ‘naughty’ material being toned down a little. It’s now more in keeping with other Gothic / Dark Fantasy works.

The sequel to Dark Angel has gone online tonight, Hell on Earth. It’s currently only avaialble as a kindle download but within a matter of hours the paperback should be up and running and over the next few days, both Dark Angel and Hell on Earth should be available for all e-readers. The same will apply to Her Name is James by mid-April (when I can get myself out of Kindle select’s possession).

What comes next?

Book three is Lucifer, that is aiming to a release of Early June, maybe a earlier if my luck holds.

Also, another ‘soft’ story is part written. The story is set in 1953 England and is about gypsy Mickey Ray, a bare knuckle boxer who is promised to a girl he has known his entire life. The story kicks into play when he meets a youth from the village his community has camped on the outskirts of. Mickey is gay. With homosexuality being illegal and the gypsy community rejecting it as a possibility, Mickey’s tale is going to be hard reading.

And so… I guess that’s the long overdue update. I shall try to stay active here 😉



New Love


Naked bar heels
strapped to her feet,
she crosses the room
flushed pink from the heat
that burns inside
and colours her cheeks,
her eyes rove the room
for the lover she seeks.
The bed lies barren,
a tear mars her eye.
She’s departed, she’s gone,
no word of goodbye.

A sound from behind,
she turns and gasps.
The love of her life
clasps her hands to her arse.
“I feared you had fled”
the blond girl weeps,
The redhead says
“No, you’ve got me for keeps.”
Heads are bowed,
they embrace in their love,
and though they can’t know it,
they are loved from above.

As with the poem “The Wait”, this is to explore the idea of ‘One Love’ for Queer Romance Month. The thinking is simple and honest. Love is love