The website of the historical fiction writer.

The Next Big Thing

Recently I was asked to take part in a blog chain called ‘The Next Big Thing’. This is a blog hop for authors to answer questions posed about their latest work and their writing.

E. M. Powell author of The Fifth Knight tagged me in The Next Big Thing blog hop. The Fifth Knight is her debut novel. It is published by Thomas & Mercer and is currently on Kindle Serials release in the US, with UK release planned for 2013.You can read E.M. Powell’s Next Big Thing post here.

Now it’s my turn to answer questions about my work.

1)What is the working title of your next book?   

In the Shadow of the Gods

2) Where did the idea come from for the book? 

Back in 2008 I was idly looking through The History Channel on Demand and saw there was a documentary on Vikings, possibly the Barbarians season but I can’t remember. I wasn’t working on anything at the time except for the assignments I was doing for my Open University course when it set off an idea: how about I write about the Viking Age? I’ve always loved history and have a degree in the subject. The following day I went to the public library after work, got as many books as I could carry and made a timeline of key events that could form a series.

3) What genre does your book fall under?   

Historical Fiction.

4) What actors would you choose to play the part of your characters in a movie rendition? 

I’m not sure. I thought the shipmaster, Sigtrygg, would be a bit like Gene Hunt initially but there will be a character in the next book who is like him even more so. Perhaps Brian Blessed could play the King? To be honest it would be good to see a cast of unknowns launch their careers from this.

5) What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?   

Prophecies of the Gods influence the actions of men. (Yes, I know it needs some work!)

6) Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency? 

I am currently seeking representation by a literary agent.

7) How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?  

I worked on this on and off for two years but began to write it properly in early 2010 during my MA course. It took me just over a year. The first draft for my second took five months, but it’s a bit shorter and I knew what I was doing!

8) What other books would you compare this story to within your genre? 

This will (hopefully) appeal to fans of Bernard Cornwell’s Saxon Stories and Warlord series along with Conn Iggulden’s Emperor and Conqueror books. If you keep an eye on my Twitter page you’ll see what I’ve been reading.

9) Who or what inspired you to write this book?

See answer to Question 2.

10) What else about the book might pique the reader’s interest?

As far as I can find there are no books set that far back in the Viking Age (789 – 825). It also challenges the widely-held belief that the first attack on British shores by the Norsemen was the raid on Lindisfarne in 793. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle describes a visit to Portland in Dorset in 789 where the reeve, the King’s tax man, was killed after a misunderstanding.

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