Thursday, 13 August 2015

#PitchWars Mentee Bio

I thought I better join in the fun of writing a Mentee bio, just that you can learn a bit about me and help me get into the spirit of things.

About Me

I'm a mid (late) thirties father of two and I work full time in the finance industry - investments to be precise. A lot of my work involves writing reports and articles, so I get plenty of literary and grammar practice in everyday - unfortunately, most of it is not on my current WIP!

I have always been involved in various creative arts, including music and amateur drama/filmmaking. It was only about 7 years ago that I began writing in earnest. My first book was called Argyle and is a sci-fi comedy. It's not great, my friends said it was funny, but it was just a practice piece if I'm honest with myself. And honesty to oneself is essential in this industry!

So, my real love is writing fantasy, specifically middle-grade. Why? Because middle-grade allows you to truly flex your imagination and children of this age are able to believe and immerse themselves into almost anything you throw at them.

I'm a member of the SCBWI (UK) and I also enjoy cycling, surfing and reading... lots and lots.

Why Me?

I guarantee you that if you pick me, I will give you my everything. I will pour my heart and soul into the changes you suggest I make, together with some coffee and chocolate sauce. I may even send you some homemade chocolate fondant through the post - if you're not too far away!

I write for my family. It's something that I feel I can create and give to them to enjoy for years to come. But I also write because I love creating and I create best with someone on the sidelines to cheer me on! CP's and beta-readers have been awesome in this respect.

My submission to PitchWars has taken 5 years to get where it is today - with a three year hiatus due to baby arrivals! But it is where I want it to be today and I hope you like it! However, if it takes me another 5 years to get it to where it needs to be to be published, then I will do that too.

What has inspired me in my writing?

Everything I have ever read and somethings I haven't! But in particular, the works of Tolkein and JKR are high in my sphere of influence. TH&MW of the DRAGONLANCE series were very influential when I was younger, and Raymond E. Feist's MAGICIAN will always be in the back of my mind. But the one thing that really inspired this particular story is the 1982 animated film, FLIGHT OF DRAGONS - I must have watched it a million times as a child.

People have compared my novel to many different combinations but there are two that I think really catch its character: WINTERLING meets HOW TO TRAIN A DRAGON; and FROZEN meets GAME OF THRONES (with FLIGHT OF DRAGONS thrown in for good measure).

I may add to this later... We'll see.