The Citadel is just SO busy with interesting and charming guests right now. Alan S. Blood is no exception. Okay, I will admit that when I first saw his name, I thought he had been brazenly sent by Dracula to come and stir dissent among my minions, however nothing could be further from the truth.
Alan has entranced us all with entertaining tales and stories, and has even helped unlock some of the mysteries of 'English 'Morris Dancing'. He gave us an expert demonstration in the village tavern, and blew the local clog dancers off the stage with his fancy footwork. The only downside was his knocking the wild boar's head off the wall with his Morris Stick and his chatting up of the mayor's wife (the less said about this the better).
Alan is about to tell us another story, so I had best be off...
Alan with his novel- 'Cry of the Machi'
We are extremely pleased you have journeyed to us in the Karkonose. Can you tell us something about the place where you usually dwell and your background?
I live and work in a rambling (1873) Victorian house in Mid-Wales. My office window, next to my desk, gives me a spectacular view of the foothills of the Cambrian Mountains, unless they are obscured by cloud – which is sometimes the case ! Depending upon the variable, seasonal weather – it is a constantly changing scene and a most stimulating, wonderful place to write.
ML: This is probably why you are appreciating the view from the Citadel. You are clearly a man who enjoys the majesty of nature.
Are you enjoying your visit to the Citadel?
The Citadel relates well to my own writing whereby some of my books feature the supernatural/paranormal genre and, as such, also border upon the realms of fantasy.
ML: You do have something of an affinity with the gnomes. Just make sure you avoid anything Grundl gives you in a bottle.
Tell us what is happening to you at the moment as a writer.
An interview question on my recent 'Blog Tour' was : “Have you ever written anything that you think might never see the light of day ?”
Thinking about this, I remembered my novel “Jackson's Lane', that I wrote about ten years ago, which I had almost forgotten about. It is a complex psychological crime thriller that switches back and forth between a school and a psychiatric hospital and centres upon a teacher who suffers from the onset of schizophrenia with tragic, violent results as the situation deteriorates.
GMTA became aware of this and will be publishing the book in the near future.
Do you have anything exciting lined up for the future?
I am writing a major Historical novel, entitled 'Rogue And Royal', set in 17th Century Britain based upon one of the greatest events in English history which has never been fictionalised. However, I am keeping the details ‘under wrap’ for the time being! (It will eventually be published by GMTA).
ML: Hmm? You have piqued my interest. We shall eagerly wait to see what it is about.
We employ lots of gnomes here at the citadel. They are quite rambunctious and troublesome at times, and often refuse to work. Do you have any tips on looking after them?
Set them compulsory, difficult maths 'gnomework' task, each evening, to be handed in the next day!
I have a long running feud with Vlad Dracula, who lives over in Transylvania. He thinks I stole his wife and will not let it lie. Do you any recommendations on how I should deal with the grumpy old curmudgeon?
Force him to watch the 'X Factor' and/or 'Strictly Come Dancing' and deny him the use of 'anti-boredom pills' !
ML: You are not the first person who has suggested using Simon Cowell as a method of subduing him. There is surely some truth in it!
My wife Ruby says I spend too much time in the local village and not enough time counting turnips for her. How can I keep her happy?
Get a court Order to force her to take part in 'The Great British Bake Off '.
ML: Interesting? I wonder what the British bake nowadays. I once tried a pie with four and twenty blackbirds in it. It was quite revolting!
I failed in my last attempt to unleash chaos on the world. Can you think of a way I should employ my powers to redeem myself and make the world a better place?
Condemn all politicians to wash up filthy dishes and clean disgusting loos for the rest of their miserable lives.
How can people find you on this Internet thing-a-me-jig? Do you have a web address or other ways that lovely book fans can read more about you?
ALAN AT ABERYSTWYTH ('ABER') 'ARBOUR !
Visit my website at : www.alansblood.co.uk
OTHER LINKS : Audio – http://www.alansblood.co.uk/
Alan S. Blood’s Facebook Page – https://www.facebook.com/alan.blood.75
Alan S. Blood’s Twitter Feed – https://twitter.com/AlanSBlood
Alan S. Blood on Goodreads – http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5068714.Alan_S_Blood
Alan S. Blood on LinkedIn – http://uk.linkedin.com/pub/alan-blood/38/607/b94
BRIEF BIOGRAPHICAL UPDATE
Before qualifying from Reading University and enjoying a distinguished Teaching career, Alan S. Blood worked in Advertising and the Civil Service. He writes novels, plays and poetry and has widely travelled the world, especially undertaking research in Chile where some of his novel 'Cry Of The Machi' A Suffolk Murder Mystery' is set. His previous novel was 'Once Upon A Castle'.
He was a Cotswold Morris Dancer with two different, 'sides'. Alan is a keen wildlife photographer, in the Welsh countryside, and lives in a rambling (1873) Victorian house. He also enjoys painting and scraperboard engraving.
ALAN AT THE W H SMITH 'MACHI' BOOK LAUNCH
My current paranormal/supernatural novels are :
Uncle Toby had said that there would be castles to explore, with ghosts and things. This helps to cheer up the glum twelve-year old Lovell twins, Tom and Mary, leaving their schools and loving parents to be evacuated to wild Northumbria during World War II. Then the adventure begins. They live with their Aunt Victoria and Uncle Leslie, meet the loveable ‘Mrs. M’, a strange dog called ‘Scamp’ and, worst, the terrible private tutor, Miss Urquart, from whom they run away to find a mysterious castle seen through an old telescope. Now they are drawn into bizarre supernatural events of a time-warp between the war itself and ancient warfare. They encounter dark forces, as the story twists and turns, and are even rescued by the Royal Navy. Yet, this is only the beginning of more unexpected tragedies before the twins begin to escape from it all.
Originally published in the UK (1997) ’ONCE UPON A CASTLE’ was republished (2012) in the USA by GMTA PUBLISHING
It is available, worldwide on AMAZON & online retailers.
'CRYOf THE MACHI A Suffolk Murder Mystery’ published 2011 by ‘THE BOOK GUILD’
Like all English villages, the quiet and charming Thorpe Amberley in the heart of the Suffolk countryside has its secrets, its mysteries and its legends. It also has its traditions, such as the Tamberley Morris Men, a dysfunctional band of ‘blow-ins’, mainly professionals, who rehearse every Thursday and drink in the local pub.
Nothing much has served to disturb the tranquillity of Thorpe Amberley for centuries. Until now. A stunningly beautiful American woman comes to the village to teach at a nearby school, and her arrival coincides with the resurrection of deadly seeds of jealousy, evil and murder.
When the village is rocked by a series of gruesome and apparently ritualistic killings, it soon becomes clear that the local police are up against dark forces which they are wholly unequipped to deal with. Unlikely help comes from the shamanistic connection with a Patagonian ‘Machi’ through the Morris Men’s ‘Squire’ and the unexpected assistance of an ex-NYPD policeman.
A hunt for not one, but two serial killers, is on, and Thorpe Amberley will never be the same again.
Available from bookshops and online retailers
Thank you for coming, Alan. You are most welcome to come and entertain us again.