Sing a Song of Singapore…

Sin here.  I do enjoy taking control of young (yeah right) Mr. Allan’s blog to carry out these interviews!  Today, I’m visited by someone who has travelled a looong way to the asylum – Singapore based Giok Ping Ang.

 

What’s your name?

Giok Ping Ang

 

Where are you from?

The small red dot on the world atlas known as Singapore where five million people share 250 square miles of land. We’re busy ants dashing and rushing on a heated pan trying to look for that scrap of sugar or bread accidentally scattered by the big Man. 

 

It sounds a bit cramped.  A bit like the Recreation Room when the Coronation Street Omnibus is on.  Do you like living there?  If not, where would your favourite place to live be?  Is yes, where would you least like to live?

Not really as it is 33 degree Celsius everyday with 65% humidity – climate of a slow cooked stew.

 

It used to be New Zealand until I found out sheep fart a lot, not surprising with the amount of roughage in their gut.

 

Now, I just want to be in a temperate place with fewer people than Singapore and fewer sheep than New Zealand.

 

A place with some decent museums and concert halls, some rivers and mountains and parks would be perfect, and of course, a place where food is abundant.

 

I bet there’s a few ‘dumplings’ in that there stew, too.  I didn’t know sheep farted that much.  I think I would have thought that of cows.  Go figure.  As you’re a writer, is this your ‘day job’?

Yes, it is my day, midday, night and midnight job.

 

Ah, midnight.  A wonderful time – when Death uses the Null to collect the souls of those he’s missed during the day.  Tell me about your latest project.

It is a psychological thriller short stories collection.

 

Cool.  I like the sound of that.  How do you feel about bacon?  A crazy person once said it was the food of the gods.  OK, I admit that person was myself…

It tastes good with anything, and would probably turn the most repulsive food palatable. I am trying to think of a repulsive food but am having a tough time. As you know, Chinese eat anything that moves and does not move. We eat things that are deemed dangerous by others.

 

My mother was from China and went through famine and second world war. To her, any food and every food was precious.

 

So, yes, if you are brought up to eat anything under the sun, you’ll find bacon heavenly.

 

I’ve never actually called bacon ‘My Precious’, but I’m now imagining myself in a Gollum style pose doing exactly that…  What is your favourite film?

This is really tough for I love so many, from Blade Runner to Sense and Sensibility, and everything in between, from Dawn of the Dead to The Sound Of Music. Well, you can pretty much get the picture here. I do however have a preference for dramas. I cry watching Joy Luck Club for the hundredth time, but I will watch The Exorcist again for the hundredth time as well if it is playing tonight

 

Is it playing tonight?

 

Well, there’s some in here who think they’re possessed, if that counts?  Have you always wanted to be a writer, or is it something you found yourself doing one day?

I have honestly never wanted to do anything remotely as tiresome as writing. But I have not been told of the excitement that comes along with it either. So, I have discovered something too exciting to pass up and completely lost myself in it.

 

It’s a great feeling, isn’t it, when the words run away and you’re breathless trying to keep up?  Do you have so many ideas they dribble out of your nose if you don’t get them down, or do you have to hunt around the floor and the back of your sofa to find where your Muse is hiding?

They dribble out of my nose really badly. I see potential for every situation. I seem to be in a permanent trance of visualization of ideas and scenes. It can be disturbing. It wakes me up sometimes. It is more like I have to hide from my muse. It chases me.

 

I should introduce you to Mucous Mickey.  He has plenty of tissue for your dribbles.  If you were in an asylum, what would your particular delusion or psychosis be?

That I am flying over different places, different people all the time. Seeing the world from high up. I live in the clouds.

And when I am on ground, my roommate would most naturally be Van Gogh, who would be trying earnestly to show me the benefits of cutting off one’s ear. But all I would care about would be to ask him for another sunflowers’ masterpiece, dedicated to none other than me, his interesting Asian roommate. We would be having long conversations about painting and why people do not appreciate good art, and why it is so hard for people to understand us.

 

Now that particular delusion is a new one.  A flying fan of Van Gogh.  Connors would have a field day!  What genre(s) do you write?

My first published book entitled ”10276 in Two Months” is a Cyber Romance that has more than a twist in it. Future genres would be Thrillers (tend to be of the mental sort that turns stomachs), and I’d love to try Noir. I am going to follow my muse to wherever it takes me. I do not want to be constrained by a boundary.

 

That’s the best way.  When Shaun writes, it’s whatever is in his head at the time.  That’s not always me!  What genres(s) do you read?

I love the element of magic realism in Gabriel Garcia Marques’ “One Hundred Years Of Solitude”, Japanese author such as Murakami, books with unusual styles or structure such as “The White Tiger” by Aravind Adiga. French author Marguerite Duras’ delicate prose. There is no fixed genre. I’ll read it as long as the book has a gripping story and not too thick. I’m a slow reader and tend to chew on the words. I am on a perpetual look-out for thin books that pack a lot of punches.

 

I find myself suddenly educated.  I must look into these, though the asylum library is sparse – as in non-existent

 

Bacon – just cooked or crispy?

Haha, food question again. I love it. I would love it if there’s a bacon chewing gum!! Bacon bits in a drink, Bacon jelly, Bacon shortcake, Bacon dumplings! No, I don’t care if it is cooked just right or crispy unless I’m going on an expedition where I will surely lose my direction in the middle of no-where. I would then prefer it crispy for I could hear the sounds as I crunch away and feel less alone.

 

Bacon chewing gum!  A definite gap in the market!  Now you’re in the asylum with me, how do you aim to get out?  Do you have an escape plan?

Fly away of course. I don’t need a plan, I am on the ceiling, above everyone’s eye level. No one knows that I could just easily think of bacon and drool on them. I rise above them, their panic and worldly worries written all over their faces. I do not have fears nor worries at this very moment. All I want to do is continue flying.

 

No I don’t need a plan to escape. Why would I need one when I am home?

 

Well, if you’re home, I’d ask you to pull up a chair and chill with me.  Unfortunately they’re bolted down, so I can’t.

 

 

Giok Ping Ang was born in Singapore. She graduated from the University of Oregon in Science and later obtained a diploma in Accounting from UCLA. In 2012, her poem “An Invitation” received an honourable mention in the Writer’s Digest 7th annual poetry competition, and was published in the WD competition compilation. She enjoys painting and photography. 10276 in Two Months is her first novel.

10276 in Two Months:

 

They are hundred thousand miles apart, and could not love in flesh, not in part, so they love with their hearts. Every day they chat on Facebook, and every day they live, love and die a little. 10276 is the number of love messages they chatted in two months. Mark Fallen is a screenwriter from England, and Lim Shi Yi is a poet and novelist from Singapore who is married with two daughters.

 

It seems a perfect love made in heaven as they both share the same interests in calligraphy, music, painting, cooking and above all, poetry. She decides to write a script to document their love entitling The Secret Love Of Two Poets and he becomes her script mentor as they spiral deeper into a painful love affair.

 

Two parallel love stories, both virtual, both intense and life altering yet contrasting in development. She is to find out that it is much easier conjuring physical contacts and rendezvous for her characters in her script than it is for her own love and in the end has to choose between family and success or true love.

 

Lim Shi Yi:

Why did you pursue me? Knowing I am married and we are continents apart.

Mark Fallen:

I don’t know. Maybe I want to die.

 

An Excerpt:

 

I told him I wrote a eulogy for my dear friend and I would like him to read it. So I posted a piece of my love on the message. It was not love for him but I hoped it would help him understand how a woman felt in situations as such.

 

JUNE

 

I met her in an art class when I was painting a lotus and she was painting nudes. I was forty and she sixty-five. She had no breasts so she painted a lot of them, nudes of damsels of all races with creamy succulent breasts. “I have none, and I have to make up for my loss.” She said. Her eyes were teary and her hand moved like flowing water, fluid and soft on the canvas.

 

They cut her breasts off as they were diseased and removed the well where she fed her hungry babies. They removed her pride and identity. She was given six months but she lasted twenty years. “They couldn’t put out the fire in me,” she said. I admired her, respected her and loved her. Her name was June.

 

We sauntered from galleries to galleries holding hands in search for perfect breasts on the walls. We sat on different floors of fancy bookstores flipping through and pouring our love on the beautiful pages till they chased us out the door.

 

We continued painting, she the nudes and I the lotus and sunflowers. Her skeletal arm transferred her pain onto the canvas, the faces became sad and the flesh sallow. We forgot the time and forgot to eat. She was getting weak and her wasted body gave up in the face of her passion and will. One morning, she could no longer hold the brush and although she mixed the ochres and the whites and the blues and the reds, the brush stayed dipped in the palette.

 

Her legs gave way so I brought the galleries to her. We lay in bed and read an art book I bought and gurgled like two little girls gazing at a jar of sweets, pretending nothing had changed. We wanted a last ride before they called her name. That morning in bed, her eyes twinkled with fire, her last flame burned long and bright, her heart beat with passion and filled with beauty as a young heart might.

 

The next day I was on the beach, squatting and picking corals with my girls. The ocean breeze ruffled my peace. “Shi Yi, don’t be sad.” She whispered in my ears. I knew she was gone, but I knew somewhere in space she was watching over me.

 

Somewhere, in a different world she was whole and complete.

 

Take away my pain.

 

I shall die. Only a little.

 

A consciousness is there.

 

To smell the flower.

 

Website: www.giokpingang.com

Facebook:https://www.facebook.com/pages/Giok-Ping-Ang

Buy links: http://www.amazon.com/10276-Two-Months-Unlikely-Facebook/dp/1466928271/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1349778230&sr=1-1&keywords=9781466928275

Twitter: https://twitter.com/GiokPingAng

 

 

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Like a Moth to the flame…

Sin again, hijacking away!  Today, I’m chatting to a fiery red-headnamed Scarlett.  Scarlett is a woman of many talents and it’s a pleasure to have her with me.  I think, perhaps, she enjoys this asylum more than she possible should…

 
What’s your name?
Scarlett Flame
 
Interesting name.  It fits.  Where are you from?
Manchester, England, UK, The World lol
 
Do you like living there?  If not, where would your favourite place to live be?  Is yes, where would you least like to live?
Yeah I do love living here because my friends and family are here.  But I would love to live somewhere near to a beach (I love the sea you see!).  Not somewhere too hot though as being a redhead with freckles I would burn too easily.  I am open to suggestions though.
 
I used to live near the sea, before my current residence, of course.  You sort of get used to it and forget it’s there!  If you’re a writer/film-maker, is this your ‘day job’?
No, I wish it was but I am still a struggling writer
 
I wonder if even Stephen King and Dean Koontz see themselves, still, as ‘struggling writers’?  Not financially, I’m sure – but struggling with the ideas and wrestling the words?  So, tell me about your latest project.
I have two projects on the go at the moment (three if you include my blog!).  The first is my novel The Prophecy Unfolds (Dragon Queen).
 
The second is an Anthology of short erotic stories, I haven’t decided on a title yet!
 
They sound intriguing.  Two differing versions of ‘fantasy’!  How do you feel about bacon?  A crazy person once said it was the food of the gods.  OK, I admit that person was myself…
love bacon.  Yum.  Crazy about the stuff – especially smoked bacon.
 
Good girl.  That’s what I like to hear.  What is your favourite film?
Hard one this.  I love Avatar (I want to be about 10ft tall and blue after watching it!).  But also love all the Lord of the Rings films too
 
Avatar is excellent, but I would have to veer towards LOTR myself.  I wanted to be Gandalf, though a younger and less ‘beardy’ version.  Have you always wanted to be a writer, or is it something you found yourself doing one day?
No, as a child I wanted to be a vet but I have always kept diaries and wrote some poetry too.  I started to write due to my love of reading really, with the thought that I too could produce a work of fiction equal to or excelling them.
 
I’m sure you can.  That’s exactly the right attitude.  Do you have so many ideas they dribble out of your nose if you don’t get them down, or do you have to hunt around the floor and the back of your sofa to find where your Muse is hiding?
Ha-ha.  Yeah I have epiphanies sometimes as I am driving or when I wake up and then I have to write down scenes I have dreamt.
 
At least it’s not waking up as you’re driving.  I hope not, anywho.  If you were in an asylum, what would your particular delusion or psychosis be?
Being watched I think.  I used to imagine pictures could watch me as a child, lol.
 
You should be glad you didn’t go to school at Hogwarts, then, with all those moving paintings!  What genre(s) do you write?
Lots.  Paranormal Romance, Erotica, Fiction, Steampunk (really a subgenre).
 
Wow!  You’re head must be swimming with ideas!  What genres(s) do you read?
Virtually everything from scifi, thrillers, erotica BDSM, paranormal romance, nonfiction, cook books, you name it.
 
Do you have time to sleep?  Oh, that’ll be where the sleeping whilst driving comes in, I suppose…  If these are the same, what attracts you to them.  If they’re different, why do you think that is?
I am better at writing in my own genre (I think), but I intend to test this by writing in some of the others too.  But I still enjoy other genres, especially thrillers and horror too.
 
Bacon – just cooked or crispy?
Crispy of course!!
 
Of course.  How else?  Now you’re in the asylum with me, how do you aim to get out?  Do you have an escape plan?
Well, in real life I am a nurse, so maybe I could pretend to be a member of staff and sneak out by pinching someone else’s uniform!
 
A woman in uniform, hmmm?  Well, good luck with that plan.  It may even work!
 
 
My pen name is Scarlett Flame, and as well as writing my first novel I write a Blog under my pen name (don’t forget it’s two t’s!).  My Blog includes book reviews, band, hotel and restaurant reviews around the area of Manchester where I live. Music is a bit of a passion of mine, so I include information of venues and live music. If you follow me on twitter you will often find me playing at being a DJ.  Writing and reading are my two main passions.
 
My interests include reading, writing, especially the genres Paranormal Romance, Thrillers, Scifi and anything that involves fantastical beings. I also like going to the gym, especially weight training and Pilates!
 
Some of my favourite books are The Hobbit, Lord of the Rings Trilogy and books by authors such as Anne Rice and Dean Koontz (especially the Brother Odd Series).
 
The working title of my first book is The Prophecy Unfolds (Dragon Queen). This is the first in a series of books and is an erotic Paranormal Romance set on a Steampunk world called Syros. In my book there are werewolves, dragons, dragon riders and many other paranormal characters.
 
An excerpt from The Prophecy Unfolds (Dragon Queen) by Scarlett Flame:
 
I’d sat there enjoying my book for about ten minutes when two things happened.
 
Firstly, I became aware that a hush had suddenly descended on the forest and I could no longer hear the scampering of the squirrels or the birds singing. When I looked up I could no longer see any of them around the area they had occupied only a few minutes earlier.
 
The second thing was the sound I did hear. I can only compare that to the sound of a barrier being broken, a whoosh and a slight popping noise. Yet immediately after this, the birds and squirrels were back, chirping and moving through the grass once again.
 
I shrugged, went back to the page in my book and continued to eat. However, after a while a feeling of uneasiness descended on me. I raised my head to find myself being watched.
 
The watcher was a tall, broad-shouldered man with dirty blonde hair tied at the nape and vivid blue eyes. I estimated him to be about 25-30 years old. He was regarding me silently and with intensity. His odd clothing caught my eye. Old fashioned garments, dark trousers laced up the front, a long-sleeved suede jacket of a similar material, and leather boots.
 
I turned my head to look for any cars or vans on the car park and jumped as I spotted two more men – one to my left and one I could see in my peripheral vision to the right.
 
The man on the left was dressed similar to the first, but had sandy hair and sea green eyes. In contrast he wasn’t quite as broad, although equally tall (all three were over six foot). The last had dark hair to his shoulders that hung loose, and the most amazing violet eyes.
 
The appearance of these men with no noise and staring at me in rapt fascination, not uttering a word, spooked me. My heart was beating so loud and fast I thought that I was having some kind of heart attack.
 
But the most unnerving thing of all was all three men looked familiar, a déjà vu sort of moment. I had dreamt about these three men for so long. I knew immediately these were the shady characters from my dreams. Dreams that repeatedly haunted my sleep.
 
 

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Crispy witch, anyone?

Allo.  No, I didn’t say ‘Hello’, I said ‘Allo’.  But that’s close enough.

 

Come inside and meet the lunatics.

 

For those uninitiated among you, I nicked that line from Labyrinth.  Am I sorry?  Guilty?  Repentant?  Well, not really.  If they put funny lines in, someone will pinch them out.

 

Anywho, it’s me.  Sin.  I’m joined, today, by Tim.  Why do I like Tim?  Because his answer to my question about the crispiness of a certain delicacy close to my heart tickled me.  It made me laugh, much like a particular scarf-wearing worm.

 

So.

 

What’s your name?

 

Tim Stevens

 

Hi Tim.  Where are you from?

 

West Essex, England.

 

Do you like living there?  If not, where would your favourite place to live be?  Is yes, where would you least like to live?

 

It’s a great place to live. Essex isn’t at all the way it’s portrayed in all the jokes. Well, not entirely. We read books and stuff here, innit?

 

The place I’d least like to live is somewhere with no books or internet access. I like my creature comforts.

 

The plasticine animals from Ardman?  Oh, you meant…  OK.  If you’re a writer/film-maker, is this your ‘day job’?

 

No, I work full-time as a doctor in the NHS, and cram in the writing wherever I can find a free minute.

 

I know a certain doctor who likes to cram in a little writhing when he’s free.  That’s of the patient writhing kind.  I think he should look up the word ‘care’.  Tell me about your latest project.

 

It’s a spy thriller called Jokerman, the third featuring my series protagonist John Purkiss, who’s a sort of policeman to the spies, hunting down British Intelligence agents who have gone rogue.

 

Like Bond, Sherlock Bond?  Or not…  How do you feel about bacon?  A crazy person once said it was the food of the gods.  OK, I admit that person was myself…

 

I love bacon but chasing the pig is hard work, so I often don’t bother.

 

That’s part of the fun!  Fast little tykes, though, hmmm?  What is your favourite film?

 

Disney’s The Jungle Book. Well, maybe not my favourite. It’s certainly the one I’ve seen most often, and the one I know the words to almost off by heart. I have a five-year-old, you see.

 

Any excuse.  We know the truth…  Have you always wanted to be a writer, or is it something you found yourself doing one day?

 

Always wanted to. I started writing adventure stories when I was six or seven, started again as an adult at the age of about twenty-seven, did the whole pretentious artiste thing of writing only when my muse struck – and consequently didn’t finish anything for ten years. I began writing seriously in 2007 and it’s just gained momentum, particularly with the advent of the fantastic self-publishing opportunities we now have at our disposal.

 

Excellent.  So you grabbed the muse by the throat and didn’t let him go?  That’s the way to do it!  Do you have so many ideas they dribble out of your nose if you don’t get them down, or do you have to hunt around the floor and the back of your sofa to find where your Muse is hiding?

 

My muse is an imaginary being, like the Loch Ness Monster or the Tooth Fairy. I’ve learned not to wait for it. As for the ideas, yes, they dribble out of nose, ears and other places, but like a primordial soup they’re unformed. Moulding them into shape is hard graft for me.

 

The Tooth Fairy is imaginary?  Really?  Gee.  Thanks…  If you were in an asylum, what would your particular delusion or psychosis be?

 

That I’ll one day earn enough to be able to continue my day job part-time and working for free. And there’s no “if” about it – I live this delusion every day.

 

Good for you.  What genre(s) do you write?

 

Thrillers, mainly of the action variety with a strong element of espionage. Think Alistair Maclean but with a modern, gritty ethos.

 

Ah, so a Sherlock Mallory then?  Nice.  What genres(s) do you read?

 

Quite a range. Thrillers, mostly, and not just action but suspense as well. Some crime novels. A lot of literary fiction. Some SF, some horror, though I’m very picky about authors in these genres.

 

If these are the same, what attracts you to them.  If they’re different, why do you think that is?

 

I read in my own genre to plunder ideas. Seriously, though… I like any story that can surprise me. Being quite gullible, I’m easily taken in by plot twists, and I love them. I was a big Agatha Christie fan growing up, and could never guess whodunnit, which was part of the fun for me.

 

I think I’m drawn to espionage thrillers because I reckon I have many of the qualities of a great spy myself. I like to travel, for one. Of course, I have a few qualities that wouldn’t make me all that suited to the life. Gullibility, technological cack-handedness and extreme physical cowardice, to name but three.

 

I actually agree.  Not on the plundering part, of course, but on the whodunit point.  I don’t even try to work out twists and culprits.  I want to be surprised!  Bacon – just cooked or crispy?

 

Burnt as a Salem witch.

 

I love that phrase!  Now you’re in the asylum with me, how do you aim to get out?  Do you have an escape plan?

 

My plan is to distract you with these answers while I undo these… oh, rats. I shouldn’t have said anything.

 

Hey, you don’t have to distract me, I’d happily help.  I’m one of the inmates, not one of the orderlies.  Quick, while no-one is looking!

 

 

Tim Stevens was born in England and grew up in Johannesburg. He lives near London with his wife and daughters, and works as a doctor in the National Health Service.

His debut novel is the acclaimed thriller Ratcatcher, and its sequel Delivering Caliban, featuring the return of John Purkiss, is also available on Amazon Kindle. Severance Kill, a thriller without Purkiss, was published in November 2012.

 

Tim’s Blog:http://timstevensblog.wordpress.com/

Facebook:https://www.facebook.com/TimStevensAuthor

Twitter:http://www.twitter.com/TimGStevens

 

Buy links:

Amazon US –http://www.amazon.com/Tim-Stevens/e/B007YL78QC/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0

Amazon UK –http://www.amazon.co.uk/Tim-Stevens/e/B007YL78QC/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0

 

 

 

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Cyn by Any Other Word…

It’s me again.  Sin.  Your favourite not-quite-insane lunatic.  I do hope you’re well.  I thought I’d sneak in whilst that Mr. Allan geezer wasn’t looking and borrow his chair for a while to chat with someone new.  I’ve got a right one here.  A certain Cindy Harper.  She appears to be a friend and fan of said Mr. Allan and has read my story.

That makes her crazy to begin with…

 
What’s your name?
You think it’s a bitch to be called Sin? Try being called Cyn-Cyn. Most of my friends, if that’s what we should call them, shorten it to Cyn. Yes, pronounced the same as yours.
 
A sister-in-spirit then?  Well, you’ll know some of the fun I had at school then.  Yes, it is rather a ‘bitch’ to be called Sin.  And Everest is a big hill.  Where are you from?
Not these parts.
 
Is that the name of the town?  I don’t recall seeing it on a map anywhere.  ‘Not These Parts’ – Population 1?  I know there are places called Boring, Why, Wetwang (I’ve been there – my ‘wang’ stayed dry…), Middlefart and No Name, but never heard of that one.  Do you like living there?  If not, where would your favourite place to live be?  Is yes, where would you least like to live?
Eh. *shrugs* There are worse places. There are better places. This will do for now.
 
I like your enthusiasm.  If you’re a writer/film-maker, is this your ‘day job’?
*Bitter laugh* You’re kidding, right? I’m not a writer, nor am I a film-maker. I know too many that are. Looking to have your story on the big screen one day?
 
If my story was on the ‘big-screen’, I doubt people would believe it.  I, myself, struggle to.  Tell me about your latest project.
 *Snorts* Which one? I have at least a half dozen in the works, depending on the medium you’re asking about.
 
I wasn’t talking about Mediums, unless you’re a psychic.  Or septic.  How do you feel about bacon?  A crazy person once said it was the food of the gods.  OK, I admit that person was myself…
Bacon. Bacon should be considered a main staple of life. Which gods do you talk to?
 
Any who will listen.  I like your thinking regarding bacon!  What is your favourite film?
Terminator.
 
Nice.  I have to admit to being a fan myself.  Have you always wanted to be a writer, or is it something you found yourself doing one day?
I’m a writer by choice and by challenge.
 
Is it your choice to be challenged?  Do you have so many ideas they dribble out of your nose if you don’t get them down, or do you have to hunt around the floor and the back of your sofa to find where your Muse is hiding?
They don’t make enough paper tissues for all the ideas I have. When they get too bad, I sneeze. Then, I can breathe again. Eventually, like bad allergies, they catch up to me again. Rinse, lather, repeat as necessary.
 
You should have shares in Kleenex!  If you were in an asylum – though it sounds like you belong in one – what would your particular delusion or psychosis be?
I get to choose? How novel. Let’s go for the big guns. Let’s try Schizophrenia for $200, Alex. 
 
Interesting choice.  Surprisingly, we don’t get many schizophrenics in here.  I think it’s too ‘normal’ an illness for our dear Doctor.  What genre(s) do you write?
Whatever amuses me at the time.
 
OK.  Reason enough.  What genres(s) do you read?
Whatever’s currently on the e-reader.
 
Makes sense…  If these are the same, what attracts you to them.  If they’re different, why do you think that is?
Really? You had to go there? I like variety. Variety is the spice of life. You get too much of one kind, you get to where you can’t stand it anymore. Keep it changing; keep it different. I’m not saying you can’t revisit, just don’t let it be the only thing you get.
 
Very good point.  That’s why I don’t like Cheesy Wotsits or Monster Munch anymore.  They were the only thing we had when I was young, so I went right off them.  Now.  Bacon – just cooked or crispy?
Who’s cooking it?
 
Does it matter?  It is bacon, after all.  Now you’re in the asylum with me, how do you aim to get out?  Do you have an escape plan?
Who says I want out? I just go here. I hear there’s a lot going on in here. Maybe I want a piece of it. Maybe I want a piece of you. Whatcha gonna do about it?
 
I think I may start running…
 
 
Cindy can be found throwing words at her blog (http://cmerun12.livejournal.com/) and hoping they make sense, or brightening your day in the Twitterverse at @cmerun12.  Be sure to check her out.  Just don’t let her see you’re doing it…
 
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Jan Ruth Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest…

Name’s Sin.  Just an ordinary guy in an extraordinary world, that’s me.  Say, come inside and meet the missus, as a worm once said.
 
Granted, that’s not so straight forward in the land of the strait jacket, but still, make yourself  at home – or at least comfortable.  I have a visitor.  We don’t get many in here.  Most of the residents are either forgotten or want-to-be-forgotten.
 
So…
 
Hello…
 
What’s your name?
Jan Ruth
 
Hi Jan, it’s good to meet you, even in here.  Especially in here.  Where are you from?
Cheshire, UK. I live in Snowdonia, North Wales.
 
Do you like living there?  If not, where would your favourite place to live be?  Is yes, where would you least like to live?
I love living here, yes. Oh, I wouldn’t like to be far from the hills… an old Welsh legend has it that if you manage to survive a night on Cadar Idris (that’s a mountain, not a bloke) you will emerge a madman, or a poet.
 
Still not worked out which one I am, a little of both?
 
A poetic madman, perhaps?  It sounds idyllic.  As you’re a writer, is this your ‘day job’?
I’m lucky in that yes, answering wacky questions and writing stuff down is my day job. I’m now at that time of life (old but still breathing) when the kids have gone, life has slowed down and I have the time to make up stories. I also contribute to North Wales Yes Magazine
 
(Not that we didn’t/don’t enjoy our grown children. In fact, we’ve had a rather good return on them already this year with trips abroad and free technical expertise.)
 
Ah, so children are an investment for your retirement?  I’ll have to remember that.  As for writing, it must be wonderful to be able to spend your time writing, particularly in such delightful surroundings.  Tell me about your latest project.
Would you believe it’s a novel set in Snowdonia? I also have lots of material from a recent trip to New Zealand, Australia and Singapore. I was going to write a funny travel blog but I’ve found myself building stories around some our experiences instead. I’m thinking of writing maybe three novellas and packaging these together as a contrast to the Welsh settings on the other titles.
 
I can empathise.  I was in Egypt once, and it inspires me still.  So, how do you feel about bacon?  A crazy person once said it was the food of the gods.  OK, I admit that person was myself…
Bacon? It makes me feel proud to be British. I must say how good it is here in the UK (the bacon, that is). In New Zealand, pigs are something of a rarity over there. The bacon was more streak than meat.
 
Hmmm…  Yum.  You can’t beat a good bacon butty.  And, what is your favourite film?
Pass. Not a film lover at all. I can’t sit still long enough and I can’t bear popcorn. If I was pushed, maybe I’d say Babe… Oh, that was the previous question, sorry.
 
Not a film lover?  Oh I love films – and I’m not overly a popcorn lover either.  But I do enjoy escaping into a visual feast.  Have you always wanted to be a writer, or is it something you found yourself doing one day?
I’ve always dabbled, even as a child. I don’t think it’s something you suddenly decide to do.
 
I agree, actually.  Writing tends to be ‘in you’ rather something you cna simply turn on and off.  Do you have so many ideas they dribble out of your nose if you don’t get them down, or do you have to hunt around the floor and the back of your sofa to find where your Muse is hiding?
I find dribbles come at the most inconvenient time, like in the middle of the night or sometimes in the bathroom. If I am fully prepared for them, laptop open or pen at the ready, then they can play very cruel tricks and dry up completely. Always carry a pad or something to mop up.
 
That’s something a certain person I know (the owner of this blog I’ve hijacked) could sdo with following suit on.  He’s always moaning that he woke up with a great idea or plotline and then it had gone by the time he’d been able to write it down.  Probably why it took ten years to write my story! If you were in an asylum, what would your particular delusion or psychosis be?
The voices in my head. Talking to fictitious people is considered normal amongst writers but I can imagine it getting wildly out of control when I get decrepit.
 
You’ll be in good company then!  I’ll have to introduce you to Philip.  He often seem to be talking to so many voices at once, he’s having a dozen conversations at the same time!  What genre(s) do you write?
Romantic drama with some flashes of black humour.
 
Interesting.  What genres(s) do you read?
I can read a fairly broad span in fiction but I’m not drawn to science fiction, erotica, fantasy or autobiographical type books. Having said all of that, I enjoyed The Lord of The Rings both in film and fiction, so if it’s outstanding of its type, I can read it.
 
I’ve only read one autobiography, but I enjoyed it.  I do like science fiction and fantasy, however.  And, bacon – just cooked or crispy?
If it’s from the UK crispy; rest of the world, almost burnt is the only way to go. Nice with brie.
 
My type of girl!  Now you’re in the asylum with me, how do you aim to get out?  Do you have an escape plan?
I don’t aim to get out. I like it here, don’t you?
 
I don’t know if ‘like’ is the word I’d use, but I am, technically, here voluntarily.  Anywho, looks like our time’s up.  Visiting time is never long enough.  Thanks very much for dropping by, it’s been great to meet you.
 
Erm…  I’d ask them to bring your jacket, but it looks like they already are.  I don’t remember yours having so many straps…?
 
 
Jan Ruth writes contemporary fiction. Love stories with strong, identifiable characters, about family life and relationships.
 
‘I like to think my books convey some serious threads with a good blend of humour, a balance of light and dark. Different, I feel from the majority in that I often write from the male perspective.’
 
Jan has been writing for more than 30 years and despite various dalliances with the more traditional publishing routes, she is now pleased to be an independent author.
 
Jan was born in Bowden, Cheshire, and moved to North Wales in 1998, although she has always maintained a strong connection with the area from a much earlier age. Her feel for the Welsh landscape is evident in all of her books.
 
Jan started writing at primary school, winning prizes for poetry and short stories. Her first novel attracted a London agent, but failed to find the right niche with a publisher because it didn’t fall into a specific category- not quite light enough for romance but not literary fiction either, sitting somewhere between these two genres. Her second novel, again snapped up by a London agent; suffered the same fate. Undeterred, Jan has continued to write, believing her market is out there.
 
 
 
 
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A visit from a SINner…

I’ve had the pleasure to be interviewed by many wonderful people in the blogosphere. Regarding myself, my books and my somewhat offbeat view of the world, my thoughts and waffling – other than this, of course – have been strewn across the Internet for all to see 
And it’s been a delight. 
So… I thought I’d return the favour.  I thought I’d invite various people to join me here and answer some of questions of my own.
Then Sin got bored. Then Sin decided he wanted to play. 
So… (again)
In between my own little scribblings, there’ll be some visitations from Sin and his own peculiarly particular questions. 
Drop by and meet some of his friends and, if you fancy joining in, let me know and I’ll give him the nod to send you some questions. 
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