Of Otters, Alcohol, Time and Tyranny

A recent reviewer said “Dropping Into Darkness” reminded them of author Terry Pratchett.

The bad news is Terry’s books aren’t for everyone. He has a readership of a mere 85 million people.  I’m a fan though, so in defence of Terry (and anyone kind enough to compare me to Terry), I’ve put together some of my favourite quotes from his books.

Otter
Do Unto Otters As You Would Have Them Do Unto You …
image courtesy of pixabay.com under CC0 license. https://pixabay.com/en/otter-animal-fur-2647702/

Continue reading “Of Otters, Alcohol, Time and Tyranny”

How To Build A Fictional Bridge

I’ve had many questions and comments about the cover illustration for my book, “Dropping Into Darkness”.

Book Cover, "Dropping Into Darkness"

The fictional bridge on the cover (can’t say more about its importance without spoiling the plot) was inspired by a real-life bridge, the Trift Bridge in the Swiss Alps. That is a giddily narrow, high, thin, spidery foot bridge. A thing of insubstantial ropes and cables and planks. 570 meters (1700 feet) long and swaying in the wind 100 meters (300 feet or 10 storeys) up in the sky over a glacial gorge.

I started with an open source digital line drawing tool called “Inkscape”.

This was my early line drawing:

I didn’t like the visual effect of the planks running left-to-right. So, my next update in Inkscape was to lay the planking lengthwise, aiming them at the Continue reading “How To Build A Fictional Bridge”

No Time Travel Needed

In February 2018 I broke (again) with the themes of the previous books and published a sci-fi novel, “Dropping Into Darkness”.

A reader said that the style reminded him of Terry Pratchett meets John Flanagan. Book Cover, "Dropping Into Darkness"I’ll take that as a huge compliment. Terry Pratchett  was the creator of the intricate and wonderful “Discworld”. John Flanagan, master of the cliffhanger, sets his two best-known YA series in a world that approximates our Viking era.

For “Dropping Into Darkness” I did not create any new worlds. It’s our own planet earth, sometime into the future, after three eco-catastrophes. It’s the story of a small band of people on a journey they’d rather not be on, and the journey isn’t going well … Continue reading “No Time Travel Needed”

Of Book Clubs, Competitions and Very, Very, Very Good Wine

Wine Bottles In July 2017 I announced a “Spread The Word” competition for readers of my books. I said the prize would be a very, very, very good bottle of wine, to be awarded in October 2017.

The winner, AP of Montreal, championed “The Twelve Man Bilbo Choir” for her book club, and invited me to Montreal to chat with the book club.

I prepared a short presentation on the history behind the “Bilbo Choir” and on other, more famous works of literature that have been influenced by the same Continue reading “Of Book Clubs, Competitions and Very, Very, Very Good Wine”