What’s in a name?

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This week’s blog is on pen names, pseudonyms, non de plumes, whatever you want to call them.

People have different reasons for using them, but my reason centred on the fact I always have to spell my surname whenever I give it to someone. So much so I don’t even bother saying it now at first. When people ask my name (say on the phone) I reply “I’ll spell it for you” and then pronounce it for them.

Anyway, I went through a few choices trying some from leftover / unused characters from my short stories but I didn’t feel they fit me.

So I tried anagram generators where you plug in your name and see what comes out. I got a few interesting results, and a few horrifically bad ones, but none that would serve as a name. Eventually I knew I was never getting one that way, so I looked into other methods. Read the rest of this entry »

Ghostbusters Reboot

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It seems I may be in the minority on this one. I’ve read how there’s a huge chunk of the internet hating on the reboot of Ghostbusters, but after watching the two trailers I’m kinda excited to see it.

I’ll be the first to admit the first trailer that dropped didn’t wow me that much. That said, I think they’ve done a better job with the second so much so my wife and I were ready to pack the kids off to their grandparents for the evening and head to the movies, but then found out it’s not on yet. Oh well, we’ll do that when it comes out.

Now, I’m a huge fan of the first one and to a slightly lesser degree the second (let’s face it, sequels in the 80’s tended towards the crappier end), so like most people who hold things like this from their childhoods close to their hearts I was a tiny bit affronted to learn someone was rebooting the franchise. Read the rest of this entry »


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I learnt today “Hybristophilia” is a sexual attraction to serial killers. I didn’t know there was a word for it, but apparently there is and that’s what it is.

If you haven’t yet read my most recently published work Have Shovel – Will Bury you may be wondering why I bring this up. If you have, then you know there’s a character in the story who is very fond of serial killers (hence the tagline: “Murder. Blackmail. True Love.“).

I didn’t know it at the time of writing the story but I’m happy to find out there’s a word for people like her. Read the rest of this entry »

Thwarted by a Two-year-old

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It’s hard to stay cranky at kids when they start counting along with you.

Like all parents my wife and I spend a lot of time teaching our kids to count and the alphabet etc., so when we’re giving them to the count of five to do something (or more often than not to stop doing something) it’s very off putting when you say “one….” and pause to let the count sink in, and they follow on with “two… three… four…”.

Damn it! Thwarted by a two-year-old!

I guess I shouldn’t complain, they have mastered counting to double digits after all.

So me being a clever daddy, like a ninja I reversed it and counted backwards from five. Read the rest of this entry »

Update: Have Shovel – Will Bury

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Have Shovel CoverAn update to my previous post, my latest work Have Shovel – Will Bury is now live on Amazon!

It’s off to a great start already and within a couple of hours of it going live I’ve seen borrows from Kindle Unlimited and a couple of sales. I admit I was more hesitant with this one, being a departure from my usual genre of science fiction, but now it’s published I’m more relaxed.

I guess it goes to show you never know what is going to appeal to people until you write it.

Like everything I’ve published, I’ve made it available to read through Kindle Unlimited so you can read it for free. Read the rest of this entry »

Have Shovel – Will Bury

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I’m happy to report my next story due for release Have Shovel – Will Bury has come back from my Beta reader with a lot of great notes. I’m busily working away on incorporating their suggestions and giving the whole thing a spit-polish to get it as ready as I can for release.

In previous posts I’ve hinted at this one but never given much in the way of details. I’ve been a little more hesitant around this one mainly because it’s such a departure from what I normally like to write.

So what is Have Shovel – Will Bury all about? I’ll let the blurb tantalise you first… Read the rest of this entry »

A Sample of Things to Come

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A few days ago I had a sudden brain explosion when I thought up a new idea for a story. To give you an insight into my process, when I first start with an idea I usually have a bunch of notes written down somewhere (usually OneNote), which I then map out using XMind (a mind mapping program). As a program I find it insanely useful because it lets me timeline out the story in a logical way.

I can throw down the major plot points in sequence then build in smaller points until I have the barebones of what I want to write. I then copy each of the headings into Word and start filling in the blanks.

My most recent idea came to me last week almost as a fully-formed idea for a story. I quickly smashed it into XMind so I wouldn’t forget any of it, then that night got to work typing it out. I worked on it whenever I could over the weekend and am sitting on a little over 7,100 words and only just getting started. I haven’t been this excited about a new project idea for some time, so expect to hear more about this as I work on it. Read the rest of this entry »

Whisky Tasting

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Anyone who knows me knows I love a good whisky. I was inspired to write this after recently buying one and reading the back of box it came in.

I have to assume the back of the bottles and boxes aren’t lying to me and there are people who can distinguish a dozen distinct flavours in a glass of whisky. I for one cannot and frankly I have a hard time believing that anyone can. I mean take the following from a cheap-ish one I’ve had recently. Read the rest of this entry »

2 New Books

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Two new books in as many days! I know I’ve been putting out quite a few recently, but that’s mainly because I had quite a backlog of stuff I’ve been working on for years.

The two latest releases are Finsbury Park (a science fiction / comedy / adventure) and the next in my Biggy Piggy children’s picture book series – Biggy Piggy Balloon Rescue!

I’ve got one more novella fully drafted which I am lining up to release within the next month after beta reading / re-editing is completed (more about this one soon). A complete departure from my preferred sci-fi category, this one features a vigilante serial killer with a good sprinkling of dark humour. Read the rest of this entry »

Finsbury Park

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Finsbury Park CoverAnother shameless plug time – Finsbury Park is available from today as an eBook from Amazon.


Finsbury Park likes his life just as it is: quiet and uneventful. The universe has other ideas and forces him into having fun and exciting adventures whether he wants to or not.

Teleported to the other side other galaxy, he gets attacked by fast food before being mugged by a naked harpy, and inadvertently ticks off the most insanely violent and unhinged warship captain of the deadliest alien species in the galaxy. And that’s just in the first twenty minutes of his arrival.

With the help of the highly distracting harpy and his disinterested pet cat, Finsbury reluctantly sets out on his forced adventure in the hope it’ll satisfy the universe and he’ll get his old life back.

Read the rest of this entry »