Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Ralph's Rants Interviews Author Gordon Dymowski

Gordon Dymowski interview

Welcome to Ralph’s rants. Today we have Gordon Dymowski joining us, hello and how are you, Gordon?

Pretty good – really looking forward to talking!

Glad to hear it then, let’s get right into it, why don’t you tell my readers a little bit about yourself?

            By day, I’m a freelance marketing consultant for nonprofits, social enterprise, and small businesses. I also write for I Hear of Sherlock (a Sherlock Holmes blog) and Chicago Now.  Co-host the Zone 4 podcast, run a Doctor Who Meetup group, and…well, basically try to avoid being a “real” adult, whatever that is.

How many pieces (Stories, Novels etc.,) have you had published?

            For Airship 27, I’ve been published in Legends of New Pulp (‘Pather) and Black Bat Mystery Volume 3 (The Magnificent Anderson). For Pro Se Productions, my stories have appeared in Tall Pulp (Crossing McCausland) and Moose & Skwirl (All Roads Lead to Rome). And I’ve had one story published in Space Buggy Press’ Dreamers Syndrome: New World Navigation (When Angels Fall), and got my start in the Les Vamps anthology (Out There In the Night).

What genre do you write in? Adventure fiction or new pulp as it is commonly known?

I would definitely consider myself a “New Pulp” writer, and my focus is on more mystery/thriller oriented writing.

What is your favorite published piece that you have out there?

In all honesty, “When Angels Fall” (Dreamer’s Syndrome: New World Navigation) is the one I’m proudest of….and not just because it was nominated for a Pulp Factory Award.

It’s a private eye tale, and I love detective stories. It’s where Lovecraft, Chandler, and John Milton have a massive jam session. Plus, there’s a heroin addict turned cartoon bear.

(And for those of you reading….that last statement makes perfect sense once you’ve read the story)

But it’s the first story where I felt I found my “voice”, to use a writer’s cliché – it was the first time that a story came out the way it sounded in my head.

What authors inspire you to write?

When I was a child, two series made me want to write: Bantam’s Doc Savage reprints…and The Three Investigators. (Hey, don’t scoff – early books featured Alfred Hitchcock as a lead character, and those were as close to pulp as a ten year old could get in those days. Mock me at your peril!)

In my college days, I was inspired by Raymond Chandler, Mickey Spillane and Robert B. Parker. In fact, their styles seemed easy to emulate, so I tried writing like them.

As a result, I acquired a large collection of rejection slips. Their style of writing isn’t that easy, which is why it’s so good. But they were the guys who struck some chord that made me think, “Yeah, I can do this.”

Keeping with the same train of thought, who are the biggest influences on your writing?

Do you have a few hours? Let’s see…..Robert B. Parker’s Spenser novels. Chandler. Sara Paretsky. Mickey Spillane. Jim Thompson. James Robinson’s Starman. Matt Wagner’s Sandman Mystery Theater. Charles Beaumont. Elmore Leonard.  Piri Thomas’ Down These Mean Streets. Robert Holmes (considered the Doctor Who writer of the classic era). Paul Ernst (especially his Avenger novels). Richard Stark’s Parker novels.  Way, way too many influences to mention….

What era is your favorite to write in?

This may sound like a complete non-sequitur, but Westerns. Wrote a story for a Pro Se anthology (read on for more details), but I really loved the challenge of writing a Western

And the whole World War Two era (mid-1930s to late 1940s) fascinates me – perhaps it was because both of my grandfathers served in that war (my mother’s dad was a medic in the Phillipines, my father’s dad was artillery in Persia), but there’s something about that era that really resonates with me.

Do you have a favorite character to write?

That’s easy: The Black Bat. Loved writing a currently-unpublished comic script, and had a blast writing him for Airship 27. Yes, everyone, Black Bat Mystery Volume 3 features the Black Bat/Orson Welles showdown you were looking for!

OK, so maybe you weren’t, but it’s a darn good story nonetheless.

I’m also eager to revisit two of my own characters: Screenwriter-turned-PI John Brant from Mark Bousquet’s Dreamer’s Syndrome: New World Navigation, and Natan Bodaway, the Martian colony lawman from Legends of New Pulp (‘Pather). In fact, I have a story idea involving Bodaway that’s kind of crazy….but is just so pulp. 

What do you have coming up for release next? Tell us a little about it?

Right now, just finished a short story for Sean Taylor’s It’s Been A Long Time anthology, featuring noir stories inspired by classic songs. I’m also writing a four-issue series for Last Ember Press called The Crimson Badge which – believe it or not – is not a Western…but it is pulp.

What do you have scheduled for release the rest of the year?

Let’s look at what’s in the pipeline: have one story in process for Airship 27. (Trust me, it’s worth not spoiling). For Pro Se, I have stories coming up for Hollywood Detective, Pulpternative, and some other anthologies that I can’t discuss.

(Trust me, it’s good news).

Is there anything else you would like my readers to know about Gordon Dymowski?

Some people often confuse me for Tommy Hancock. One way to tell us apart: Tommy’s much younger...and much slimmer.

Also, please feel free to give my work a try – all of my books feature great stories by some great writers, so you’ll definitely find something worth enjoying!

Gordon, feel free to post links to your blog, your books, your web page etc. Whatever you might like.

Sure – readers can check out my personal blog, Blog THIS, Pal!, at http://blogthispal.blogspot.com. You can check out my writing via Amazon at  http://bit.ly/GdymAuthor, and follow my Facebook author page at http://www.facebook.com/gordonrdymowski. People should check out I Hear of Sherlock (http://www.ihearofsherlock.com) and Chicago Now’s One Cause At A Time (http://www.facebook.com/OneCauseAtATimeCNow). Links to all of these can be found via http://www.gordondymowski.com

Thanks for joining us here today Gordon, it’s been a real pleasure having you here. Take care and have a great day!

You, too – it’s been a blast!

As always all of my own books are available at http://RLAngeloJr.com or http://tinyurl.com/ralphsamazon

Subscribe to my blog! Click on the link at the top of the right hand column to get my daily rants delivered to your inbox.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Ralph's Rants interviews Author David Noe

David Noe interview

Hello, David and welcome to Ralphs Rants, how are you tonight?

Im doing great, Ralph.  Thanks for having me on.  Im just having a glass of iced tea.  Please excuse the occasional SFX. *SSsssssp!  I appreciate you pronouncing my last name correctly.  Most people say, No, but as you so astutely enunciated, its actually, No-ee.

Tell us a little bit about yourself, David. Where are you from?

Im from a little town called, Gower, Missouri.  Its right between Kansas City and Saint Joseph.  I live out on a gravel road, and I wouldnt have it any other way.  Well, when I say I live on a gravel road, you have to understand that I actually live in a house that is located NEAR a gravel road.  Otherwise that would be silly.

Are you a full time writer or do you work a day job as well as write?

Yes.  The answer to that would be yes, Ralph.  I write all the time, even when Im not actually writing.  My brain just wont stop, even when everybody around me asks really nicely.  Unfortunately, that doesnt pay the bills, now does it?  Thinking never made anybody any money.  Quite the opposite, really.  I run a mobile home park and manage a water district and own an apartment building and do maintenance at a convalescent center and help on a farm.  I also edit and publish a monthly magazine thats been running for over twenty years.  Did I mention I also have a wife and kids?  And on Tuesday

Who have you, or will you publish with? Or are you self-publishing?

Aside from the magazine, I have had several books published.  Im currently working with Amazing Things Press on a number of projects.  I also have a few comic book scripts coming out for Charlton Neo and Empire Comic Lab, Pix-C and a short story for Airship27 Publications.

David, what genre(s) do you write in?

Ah, the genres!  I love the genres.  Im actually trying to write in several genres.  It really flexes the old creative muscles.  *SSsssp!  Ive written short stories, poems (Im the official poet laureate of Gower), thrillers, speculative fiction, comic book scripts, humor, non fiction (how-to), western, noir, pulp and drips and drabs of others.

How many books or stories do you have out there right now?

Currently, I have a story in Charlton Arrow #3, and hopefully another story coming up in #5.  Mort Todd and I are reviving a little known silver age hero called, The Shape.  I have a wonderful series of books started with Amazing Things Press called, The Trade of the Tricks.  The first installment, The Tricks Brand, is out now on Amazon.  All my books are still available on Amazon.  I have a poetry collection called, Scanner Code and a book about how to be a landlord and run a small rental business entitled, Living In Someone Elses House.  It also has crazy true stories about my encounters over the years.  I have two other books available that were published years ago.  One is a mature readers thriller called, The Notions of Minsa Van Whey.  The other is a short story collection called, Odds and Ends (But Mostly Odds).

What book is your most recent release?

The Trade of the Tricks, the Tricks Brand is my most current book, but Im only weeks away from two or three simultaneous releases.

What is it about?

The Tricks Brand is YA speculative fiction based in a world that used to have super powers.  One day 50 years ago, in the midst of a giant battle between all the good guys and all the bad guys, almost everybody just vanished.  Not only that, but now there can be no more powers anywhere.  There is still the memory of the powers, though, and good guys still dress up to fight bad guys even without the powers.  The good guys soon learned that they need help, an edge, a TRICK to help them set traps or escape or to bring them a sandwich if theyre hungry.  Now there is a prophecy that the powers will all return on the fiftieth anniversary and it will destroy the world.  That day is coming up real soon.

Its also a comedy!

What can you tell us about the main protagonist?


The main character is a fifteen year old boy named Brand.  His grandfather was a sidekick in the big battle fifty years ago, but for some reason didnt vanish with the others.  Brand is a part time Trick (every other weekend and two weeks in the summer).  He is starting to notice odd things happening.  Hes having weird dreams.  His grandpa is acting strange.  His world seems to be unravelling.  Mostly, though, hes worried about his first date ever with the sidekick known as the Dartette.

Who is this book aimed at?

I classified it as a young adult novel, but I gotta say, a lot of older adults like it too.  It could also be considered New Adult.  Its speculative fiction, kind of a blend of sci-fi and contemporary fantasy.  I was fortunate to get an introduction written by Daredevil (and Spookman and Knightingales and Next Man and many others) scribe, Roger McKenzie.  I got some illustrations by Sandy Carruthers, Daerick Gross Sr., Kevin S. Halter, Dana Black and Truman Vasko.  These guys will blow your mind!

How long did it take you to write it?

Oh, the actual writing time for the first draft was only about six weeks.  Its based on a world I already invented in other books, and of course the rewrites and edits took a while.  I wrote it for 2013 NaNoWriMo.

What kind of research, if any, did you have to do for it?

In a way, Ive been researching it since 1979.  Thats when I first bought a copy of Fantastic Four and Amazing Spider-Man.  Ive been a panelologist ever since.  The many iterations of comic book worlds have fascinated me for decades.  I also enjoy the rich history and artistry that goes along with it.

Did your main character have to run any type of gauntlet in the story? What did you put him/her through?

Theres an aspect of coming of age in this story, as well as acceptance of responsibility and discovery.  Basically, Brands world starts unravelling all at once, and he has to figure out why and survive at the same time.  Friends, family, enemies all change roles.  Even reality and ethics and laws of nature have to be questioned.  Yeah, he gets roughed up a little too.  Fortunately, hes not alone.  The female lead is with him if she can be trusted.

What other books do you have coming up this year?

I am SO glad you asked that question, Ralph!  *SSsssp!  I have a short story collection called, Kin and a nearly uncategorizable humor book called, Voices In My Pen.  Also, I have a book that is a flip book.  Its a western on one side, then you flip the book over and its a noir detective novel that ties into the western, and theres also a comic book in the middle!  Ill be doing a poetry reading at the Albrecht Kemper Museum of Art in Kansas City on May 19th, so I hope to have my new poetry collection, New Things Among The Old out by then, too.

      I also have a couple of comic book stories (and maybe a few more) coming up later this year, including an incredible new rendition of ZaZa the Mystic with the amazing Bob Wiacek for Pix-C.

When will they be released?

The short story collections will be out in mere weeks!  The western/noir will hopefully be out by summer.  Im not sure about the comic stories.  I expect the Charlton Arrow #5 will be in just a couple of months.  The Pix-C series is still in its early stages.  Id love to come back and talk about that when it is closer to publication!

What are they about?

Oh, man, they are so cool!  Kin is a group of short stories about different aspects of family.  There are funny and sad and poignant stories from many different points of view.  Im super psyched about Voices In My Pen.  Imagine Mad Magazine in book form.  Artist, Kevin S. Halter does a perfect Don Martin impression with the cover and interior illustrations.  Hes incredible.  Its absolutely wack-a-doodle, Ralph!  I had SO much fun writing this book that I could go on and on about it for at least half a sentence more.  The western is called, Alabaster Kid, Beneath the Veil.  Its about a bounty hunter who also has a form of albanism that makes him burn easily in the sun.  He has to wrap himself in rags to protect himself and to hide himself.  He has other deformities that make him look rather demonic, but his senses are heightened.  On the flip side, the noir detective is, Slipknot and the Golden Claw.  Slipknot is a violent, somewhat unhinged detective who wears a noose instead of a necktie.  When he puts on his domino mask he becomes Slipknot, and that isnt always a good thing.  In the middle of the stories is a Tricks comic book in the old west.  It leads directly into a new Tricks book that I hope to have out next year.  The covers and the comic art are all done by the incredible, Daerick Gross Sr. (Knightingales).  To say he is a talented artist would be well, it would be absolutely correct, Ralph.  The poetry book will be poems that each tell a story and invent fantastic tales.

The Shape comic is very special.  We got permission from the owner of the character to revive a funny hero created by Grass Green in the late sixties.  The Shape is like a cross between Plastic Man and the Impossible Man.  Mort Todds art is perfect for the type of story this is.  Its light hearted and funny.  In tone its similar to the story Im doing for Empire Comics Lab, Barry Baxion, Man of ACTION!  Im not sure when that will be out.  ZaZa is a Charlton Comics character from the fifties that Bob and I are reviving in a grand universe spanning adventure!

What is your favorite type of story to tell?

Obviously it is heavy handed big picture period dramas, Ralph.  I think the Brothers Karamazov is just too light hearted, and War and Peace could have been drawn out a little more.  *SSsssp!

Okay, maybe lighter fare and humor is more my go to area.  I admire the works of Douglas Adams and Jasper Fforde, but also that of Roger McKenzie, Alan Moore and Neil Gaiman (and many others).  Give me an interesting character and Ill be content to watch him or her eat a sandwich or drink some tea.  There are times when the story takes second place to the telling of the story.  Actually, that may be more often than not.  Perhaps that is why my genres are all over the place.  Its not the story so much as the telling of the story that interests me.  Am I repeating myself?  Am I repeating myself?  *SSSssspp!  AH!

David, Thank you for agreeing to be interviewed. Feel free to leave whatever links you may have to your website or direct links to your books. Thanks for joining us here on Ralphs Rants and best of luck with all your endeavors.

Thank you for having me on your rant, Ralph.  Lets do this again sometime.  Maybe I could do some tricks.  Do you sing?  We could do a duet.  I cant dance.  Dont even ask me.

Here is my authors page on facebook!

            Here is my page for my magazine (TYPO Magazine!)

            Here is my Amazon authors page.  You can get all my books from here!

            Here is my website

As always all of my own books are available at http://RLAngeloJr.com or http://tinyurl.com/ralphsamazon2

Saturday, March 12, 2016

The Grim Spectre-Now Available in Audio Edition!

The Audiobook edition of The Grim Spectre is now available at http://tinyurl.com/thegrimspectre

Get your copy today! Narrated by the incomparable Chris Grall!

Friday, March 11, 2016

Monday, March 7, 2016

Ralph's Rants presents an interview with author IA Watson!

I.A. Watson Interview

Hello Ian, and Welcome to Ralph’s Rants; how are you today?

IW: Slightly sleepy. It’s 3.09am here in Yorkshire, UK, and I’ve just finished writing my 5000 words for the day. This interview is by way of winding down for the night.

Ian, tell my readers a little bit about yourself.

IW: I did almost all the interesting things in my life by the time I was 21. I toured Europe, got my heart broken in Innsbruck, wrote my first stage play, directed my first stage play, dated an actress in it – don’t do that – chased off to Paris one mad weekend, met my future wife (not in Paris), went ghost-hunting (didn’t find one), sank a yacht, that kind of thing. Since then, wife, kids, management jobs, all the real-life stuff.

Now the most interesting thing about me is that I sometimes write books. This is a good thing. I want people to be interested in the books, not the writer.

Oh, and when I do write things, it’s as I.A, Watson, not Ian Watson. There’s another, highly successful, very popular author of that name who isn’t me. So I had to make up a middle initial.

Ian, you are one of, if not the most prolific guy in adventure writing or new pulp as it’s called. How do you keep up your productivity?

IW: I’m lucky because when I write I write fast. And I like to write, so I do it a lot. Plus, going back to your last question, the kids are nearly grown up and moved out now, the wife isn’t the wife any more, I’m paid shockingly high amounts for consultancy work so I don’t have to do it more than a couple of days a week, and therefore I get plenty of time lurking in front of a keyboard.

Also, coffee.

Does writing come easily to you? Or is it something you have to work at?

IW: It mostly comes easy. I have to work harder to do mystery stories because they require more intricate plotting and breakdowns and I have to work harder writing historical because they require a lot of research. Historical mysteries are the toughest of all.

Although few fictional stories use genuine, 100% best-as-we-know-it history, I still like to get my backgrounds right, or at least to select the bits I change through artistic choice rather than ignorance.

Research can be rewarding for a writer. For my ROBIN HOOD series, I’ve actually argued with the modern-day Sheriff of Nottingham, had a guided tour of the hidden tunnels under Nottingham Castle, and been “received” at nearby Belvoir Castle for a personal library visit. Other projects have got me to the Tower of London, Buckingham Palace (complete with cucumber sandwiches on the lawn), a working rescue lifeboat, and a very spooky backwoods cabin somewhere in Vermont. We’ll save those stories for another interview.

What does I.A.Watson’s writing routine routinely look like?

IW: You wouldn’t want to see it. It involves me rolling out of bed, padding to the bathroom, stomping downstairs to bring in the milk and make coffee, crawling back upstairs to the study and turning on the PC. High drama stuff. There are five websites I look at before work: The Order of the Stick, Something Positive, Girl Genius, Darths and Droids, and Doctor Who News. Then I check e-mails, triage the really urgent ones, and start to write.

I am not allowed to eat until I’m finished writing. I find it really hard to write with a full stomach. I just want to go to sleep.

You are well known for your Sherlock Holmes and Robin Hood stories and novels; besides those two what are your favorite characters to write?

IW: A while ago, Tommy Hancock of Pro Se Press mentioned to me that I was unusual in not having developed series characters of my own. This was mainly because nearly everything I’d written up to that point was reactive; someone had asked me to do it. “Ian, how about penning a Holmes story?” “Ian, we’re putting together an anthology about airman detective Richard Knight.” “Ian, do you want to pitch a Spider meets Black Bat tale?” That kind of thing. I’d never really produced something and then said, “Hey, does anyone want to publish this?”

Then I got to the point where I’d run out of commissioned work. I had thirteen projects off with editors, grinding their way towards publication. I’d caught up with all the “Hey Ian’s”. So I decided to write some stories I really wanted to tell with some characters who were entirely my own to use as I wished. Those characters are probably my favourites.

I wanted to do the whole “connected universe” thing that all the cool kids are trying these days. I decided that there should be three corners to it, a weird science strand, a supernatural strand, and a high adventure/superhero strand. I’d put out a book for each and see how it went. I’d create a cast appropriate to each genre.

SIR MUMPHREY WILTON AND THE LOST CITY OF MYSTERY, set in World War II, covers a Saturday-matinee cliffhanger serial story where the main character is John Steed-meets-Winston Churchill – with a time manipulating pocketwatch. Honestly, I’m surprised nobody else had already done it.

THE TRANSDIMENSIONAL TRANSPORT COMPANY features a quartet of entrepreneurial mad scientists who do what it says in the title. When I write about them I’m channelling Stan Lee and Jack Kirby and my head is full of crackling black energy dots. The point of view character, delivery boy Swift, is as hard-luck a hero as they come. Archscientist Dr Hal B. Harker is somewhere between Reed Richards and Doctor Who with added bubble pipe.

VINNIE DE SOTH, JOBBING OCCULTIST, is an urban fantasy-horror book with a complete cast of ghouls, werewolves, wizards and the like. Vinnie himself is the white sheep of a terribly nasty occult dynasty, socially inept because he grew up trying not to be assassinated by his siblings rather than learning how to talk to girls at parties, but really clever when there’s a rampaging monster or malefic spirit to be thwarted.

What have you released recently?

IW: Well, in 2014 I set out to get twelve published credits in one year. I failed. I got to eleven, but because of publishers’ delays I just missed the target. I tried again in 2015 and managed to just squeeze in at the last minute because of my inclusion in the massive multi-creator omnibus extravaganza that is LEGENDS OF NEW PULP FICTION (I’m one of 98 creators in there).


This year I’m determined to publish less and sell more. 2016’s objectives are about readership levels. Maybe I should do some interviews?

Care to tell us all what the works are about?

IW: I really like retelling legends in a modern way. I got the taste for it with my four ROBIN HOOD books and again with ST GEORGE AND THE DRAGON Books 1 and 2. WOMEN OF MYTH comes from that corner of my brain. It’s a collection of four stories featuring very different main characters – heroines if that doesn’t imply adjuncts to a hero – who appear in four very different roles in traditional fiction.

Blodeuwedd, the Flower Maiden of Welsh myth, was literally made to be a hero’s wife. She fell in love with somebody else. Her writer in the medieval Mabinogion very much disapproves of her infidelity. A more modern reading might be about a woman’s right to choose. It was an interesting story to revisit.

Cinderella is a tale that goes back right to Greek literature, although not by that name. The idea isn’t just about a girl with missing footwear who luckily gets swept away from domestic drudgery by a prince. It’s also an example of another ancient trope that says the prince doesn’t get to be a worthy king unless he recognizes the Lady of the Land despite her humble disguise.

Hesione was a Trojan princess who got chained to a rock to be eaten by a monster. She’s in there to represent every heroine who has had to put up with being rescued by a big hairy hero – Hercules in her case – and then has to live with the consequences. There’s a case for arguing that if Hesione had only been eaten then the Trojan War would never have happened.

Finally, there’s Lilith, who Hebrew legend names as Adam’s first wife, mother of demons, enemy of Eve’s daughters.

I wrote this book because I’m a man, a pretty lacking feminist, an enthusiastic mythographer, and I felt as if I had something to say. I just didn’t quite know what it was until I’d written it.

What else do you have upcoming this year, that you can talk about?

IW: It’s a race now between various publishers to see what comes out next. Neck and neck even favourites are Airship 27 with HOLMES AND HOUDINI, a novel which the title describes pretty well, and Chillwater Press with LABOURS OF HERCULES, an epic fantasy that I started one day in protest at having other looming deadlines.

In other work, I’m at the editing phase of a new anthology of RICHARD KNIGHT stories, based upon the old Keyhoe character. I’m just turned in a story for SHERLOCK HOLMES CONSULTING DETECTIVE volume 12, having supplied content for all the intervening editions after the most recent, volume 7. There are a couple of projects that have been in “development hell” for five and three years respectively, and maybe one day they will break free. I’m aware of about a dozen things accepted for publication that will doubtless emerge when the time is right.

What kind of a gauntlet does your hero have to run through during the course of your new story?

IW: Hercules is literally the archetype of the warrior hero. He was doing that whole walks-in-from-nowhere-and-fights-the-monster stuff in stories three thousand years ago. But on the whole I don’t think he’s been very well served in the modern age of fiction.

Partly that’s because he is an example of a really early “shared universe”, where he interacts with hundreds of other characters from other stories, fights, teams-up, romances, and everything we’ve come to expect from a modern comic book with crossovers. It’s hard to grasp all of the cast backstories, to spot cultural and religious allusions that give those stories weight, and to find ways of presenting some of the more unsavoury aspects of Hercules’ character without whitewashing him. It has often led to very watered-down caricature portrayals.

My rule in writing LABOURS OF HERCULES was to source everything from something that was written back in the classic era. That’s why there are so many footnotes in there, to the annoyance of my editors.

The gauntlet? The story starts at the most difficult moment in Hercules’ life. At the height of his prowess he went mad, cursed by Hera, mistook his own infant children for enemies, and killed them. Their ghosts follow him. His wife disavows him. His confidence is gone. He wants to die, but doing so would leave his murdered offspring to drift as nameless phantoms forever. We don’t start with bold, bluff, heroic Hercules. We start with a man who has lost everything and who blames himself.

If you’re of the school of writing that says, “work out the worst thing that you could do to your character and then do it”, then that’s where Hercules is when my account begins. His punishment and redemption, the means of giving his ghosts peace, is to undertake ten quests for his most hated enemy (he did twelve, since two were officially disallowed).

Hercules’ arc is about remaking himself into a different kind of hero. He stands on the cusp of the evolving heroic ideal. He is the last great Greek monster-fighter and the first champion of the underdog. In the end he takes on Death himself and batters his way into heaven to foment change there.

I think that’s a pretty fair gauntlet, but if Hercules can’t run it then who can?

How many stories and novels are you planning on writing this year?

IW: I don’t have a plan so much as a general order of what I want to write. The volume depends upon how much of my other (better paying) job turns up and what people ask me to produce for them. In between trying to respond to commissions, I’d like to complete the novel I’m working on right now, a sequel to THE TRANSDIMENSIONAL TRANSPORT COMPANY called PREMIUM DELIVERY TO THE CENTRE OF THE EARTH. I’d like to find time to do second volumes for Sir Mumphrey Wilton and Vinnie De Soth as well.

At some point I want to write “The Death of Robin Hood”, a final chapter for the character I’ve followed through four volumes to date. Then I want to turn to a set of King Arthur stories that I’ve been meaning to get out there for years now. Volumes 1, 2, 3, and 6 are done, but volumes 4, 5, 7, and 8 won’t write themselves.

I should also start cleaning out the back-catalogue of other material that’s accumulated on my hard drive. There are seven or eight novels on there that need a final polish before they are fit for public consumption, and another five or six that need a lot more work before I’d show them to anybody else.

Yes, I probably need to look into finding some more publishers.

It was a pleasure having you here today, Ian. Feel free to leave links to your website or direct links to purchase your books.

There’s a full list of the forty-odd books at http://www.chillwater.org.uk/writing/iawatsonhome.htm along with a few free stories and samples, plus links to lots of other writers’ websites. There’s also pretty much the only picture of me on the internet there, which everyone tells me is a truly terrible one. They just haven’t seen all the rest.

So one last question-coffee or tea?J

Well, since I already spoiled that one earlier in the conversation, let me describe my coffee mug. It’s a hand-made cup that holds ¾ of a pint, acquired for me by my wife in happier times. If psychics ever required an object closely associated with me to locate where my corpse has been hidden, that mug would be an ideal item for the experiment. And, given how seldom it gets washed, it is entirely possible that the ring-stains inside it are now more intelligent than me and may actually be the real writer of all my works.

Thanks again for being here, Ian, it was fun having you on Ralph’s Rants!

Thank you for inviting me into your webpage.

My pleasure I.A. You are always welcome.

As always all of my own books are available at http://RLAngeloJr.com or http://tinyurl.com/ralphsamazon

Subscribe to my blog! Click on the link at the top of the right hand column to get my daily rants delivered to your inbox.