Your recent release with Perseid press, “The IX” has become an international bestseller on several Amazon genre lists. It’s also topping lists on Goodreads. Can you give readers a little background on “The IX” and who it would appeal to?
Certainly, I undertook the writing of The IX following an animated discussion during a Royal Marines veterans reunion dinner in the early part of 2013. Military history has always been a hobby of mine, and several ex-colleagues started a debate as to the true fate of the legendary lost 9th Legion of Rome. Five thousand men marched into the mists of Northern Caledonia (Scotland) around AD100 – 120 and were never seen again.
That conversation stayed with me for several months until I happened to catch an old movie on TV, Millennium. In that film, time travelers visit the present day and steal passengers from doomed aircraft with the intention of repopulating a barren world of the future.
I am an avid science fiction buff, and the conversation from the reunion dinner immediately sprang to mind. Obviously, I began to imagine what if?
What if they were taken? Not into our future...but somewhere and somewhen else entirely. And what might it be like if their antagonists were also snatched away with them?
I started to let that though roll, and came up with a nice twist. Would it be a good idea to include other groups of refugees from varying time periods, and throw them together into a nightmare scenario where they had to face the very real prospect of death all over again?
It took a great deal of research and preparation, but I was very pleased with the resulting outline, as it provided a fresh approach to an exciting genre.
Those who like their science fiction fast paced and gritty, and full of realistic action and dark humor in the face of overwhelming odds will love the IX. In particular, I think fans of Julian May’s “Saga of the Pliocene Exiles,” Robert Heinlein’s “Have Space Suit, Will Travel”, and Jerry Pournelle's “Janissaries Series” will really relate to the message it portrays. It combines the divergent elements of the past, present, and future, and blends them together into a slick and stylish package that will leave you breathless and hungry for more.
How long have you been working on this book?
After I devised the idea, I did quite a bit of research. Three months worth. Then I started to write. As I’m still a part time novelist, that took about five months. But it was one of the best five months of my life.
Perseid press is owned and operated by Chris and Janet Morris, the authors of the Tempus Thales and Sacred Band novels. What was it like working with them? Specifically, what was the experience of the editing process like?
Fantastic. It’s clear they have an extensive knowledge of the business and a great many professional contacts. Receiving the benefit of such a pedigree has helped my work immensely and encouraged me to excel.
This was particularly reflected during the editing process, where many layers came together to play their part in cutting and refining and polishing the rough diamond we started with, and transforming it into a pristine gem of an end product. It truly is priceless, and I’m really pleased with the way it turned out
I notice that you are a regular contributor to Amazing Stories Magazine. What kind of work do you do for them?
I submit monthly astronomy and physics related educational articles, and snippets regarding some of the latest scientific breakthroughs reaching the news.
I notice you have nine novels available on your Amazon author page. Can you give us some background on these? Which has sold the best? Which is your favorite? Who the various publishers are?
The Guardians Saga is a science fiction series devised over my many years of service in the military and police force. Basically, it deals with what might happen if it were ever to become public knowledge that beings with extraordinary powers and technological sophistication were looking out for us from behind the scenes. Human society can be extremely fickle. While many people would love the idea that ‘Guardian Angels’ are watching over us, others would merely perceive them to be a threat, and go out of their way to be as obstructive as possible.
The Cambion Journals Series follows the life and struggles of Augustus Thorne, a demon-human hybrid, cursed with a hunger he can barely control. He hates what he is with a passion, and goes out of his way to use his extraordinary powers to hunt down and exterminate any Incubi or Succubae he can find. Along the way, he has to struggle with the loneliness his lifestyle imposes on him, and of course, with the ever increasing efforts of the demon council to end his unholy crusade.
Let’s just say, the results are as explosive and as bittersweet as they are action-packed.
Both series are produced through Pagan Writers Press – as are a number of other short stories and anthologies – and they are the first publishers who recognized my talent, and the promise I showed as an aspiring writer. I’m very grateful to them, as they encouraged me to experiment with aspects I wouldn’t normally even look at, in an effort to improve my depth and range as a writer.
Finally, we come to Perseid Press, and The IX. I’m obviously continuing to apply myself to my craft, as the IX has outsold everything else I’ve ever produced by far, and has become an international bestseller. Needless to say, I am extremely pleased about this, and am keen to make writing my fulltime vocation. In fact, it’s an obsession of mine now, as I feel that’s the only way I can go, to ensure I devote the necessary time and energy to my work as it deserves.
Any hints as to a follow up novel to “The IX”?
No hints as yet...But watch this space :)
Thanks for dropping by Andrew!