Wanderlost 5: More Shots of Literary Tequila for the Restless Soul by Simon Williams Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

It’s the final chapter of this hilarious and personal series of travel novels for author Simon Williams with the release of Wanderlost 5: More Shots of Literary Tequila for the Restless Soul. Let’s take a look at the synopsis:

The Synopsis

From being stalked by muggers on the streets of Rio de Janeiro, to absent-mindedly insulting a FIFA World Footballer of the Year while at lunch, to almost getting a divorce over ordering an UBER to the airport, what else can go wrong on a trip?

These are one man’s riveting stories of wandering our planet that the staff at Lonely Planet doesn’t want you to know. Simon explains exactly what not to do when you find yourself in a sticky situation.

Nobody travels like this anymore. Maybe for good reason. Simon Williams doesn’t go looking for trouble in life, but when he finds it he never keeps his sarcastic mouth shut.

Travelling – it leaves you speechless then turns you into story tellers. Ibn Battuta 

The Review

From unexpectedly having to bribe your way into another country, to language barriers causing awkward situations at a religious retreat and having to manage himself and his various family members as they endure Hurricane Irma, author Simon Williams final chapter in the series brings the same level of sarcasm and wit into the amazing stories of his life. The vivid imagery presented throughout each story created the scenarios in the reader’s mind perfectly, making it seem as if they themselves lived these funny and unbelievable situations themselves.

The author does a wonderful job of blending his unique sense of humor with pop culture references, political jabs and a no nonsense attitude that is rare in travel books these days. It’s a fast paced read that doesn’t relent, and readers will absolutely love this final book in an amazing series.

The Verdict

Overall I love this book. It’s a great way to end a five book travel series filled with incredible adventures, unique interactions and so much more. If you read one travel series or book this year, let it be author Simon Williams and his novel Wanderlost 5: More Shots of Literary Tequila for the Restless Soul. Grab your copies today!

Rating: 8/10

https://www.amazon.com/Wanderlost-More-Shots-Literary-Tequila-ebook/dp/B07GN65ZNH/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1540269045&sr=1-1&keywords=9780463480243

About the Author

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If sarcasm was your acceptable daily allowance of protein, then author Simon Williams would be a juicy 12-ounce steak sandwiched between two pieces of red meat. In a recent Facebook posting of the 37 things people regret when they die, there was only one item he hadn’t done. Let go of a grudge, but he doesn’t regret it.

Born in Townsville, Queensland Simon now lives in Miami, Florida. He always wanted to see the world and still harbours a strong desire to visit Cambodia, Ceylon, and Leningrad, but is buggered if he can find where they are on a map. He has spent half his life having to tell Americans that he grew up near Sydney, as most of them have no idea that Australia has another city.

He found out how much he enjoyed writing when his 10th grade English teacher told him that he was lazy, so he wrote a 25-page story for his next essay just to annoy him. That is coincidentally when he found out he liked to shit stir people. His sense of humor was developed over 8 years of boarding school. As a way of both evading having the crap between out of him, while also dealing with being a smart boy who sat at the back of the class but who couldn’t see the board because he refused to wear his glasses.

His favourite pastime is trolling his mates on Facebook and taking the piss out of them. He has only been unfriended twice, on both occasions by his wife.

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Interview with I.V. Olokita

Here is my exclusive interview with Israel based author I.V. Olokita. Please note that while the novel Reasons to kill God  was translated professionally into English, the author themselves does not speak English regularly and the answers within do not reflect the writing of the novel itself. Enjoy the interview.
1) Tell us a little bit about yourself. How did you get into writing?
My work mainly deals with managing medical disasters areas, that is, planning a correct response, responding to a harsh event and then Embed social rehabilitation. It is a preoccupation including a lot of contact with people in their most vulnerable situations. This occupation has also led me to witness tough scenes during the past twenty years, some of which will not let go until the day I die. Fortunately, I could function well under pressure and with high mental strength. And one more thing that helped me is the fact I write. Since I remember myself as a child, I write in my notebooks almost everything that happens to me and turns these things into fantastic stories. I always wrote stuff to myself and never attached importance to writing beyond the fact that it was a hobby allowing me to return to a routine very quickly, to explain to myself that I was the only logical thing in an unreasonable situation. About four years ago, a friend asked me if I would like to participate in a novel writing competition. At first, I hesitated but then decided it might be fun. For a month during the nights, I wrote my book in the drafts of the email on my cell phone. Finally, I submitted the manuscript and completely forgot it until I told that it had won the competition. From that moment everything rolled fast, too quickly; The book “Ten Simple Rules” was published and immediately became a best seller. That feeling was great, I thought, “if the audience liked it, he would probably love my other books as well.” And I was right, half a year later my second book came out “Reasons to kill God” and was a fantastic success in Israel. I hurried, couldn’t help myself, and immediately published another book, “Wicked Girl” followed by another one of short stories.
2) What inspired you to write your book?
My inspiration comes from everything I experience. Any look, sound or smell can give me a new idea. Usually, during the day I’m busy at work, so most of the ideas come to me in the few hours of sleep that I manage to sleep at night. When that happens, I wake up immediately and start writing the idea. Once the concept exists, it is a matter of short time before the book is ready. To the very question of inspiration, because my work touches on the most challenging areas of life, which my writing naturally deals with, So, in most of my books, there are at least three layers of content hidden from the reader’s eyes, and he discovers them slowly during reading. My heroes are the most wretched people you can think of, yet the right end written for them is only in the eyes of the beholder. On the other hand, there is nothing in my writing that is self-explanatory; usually, my plots will surprise the reader right up to the last word in the book because, I learned in life and I apply it in my books, understanding is a matter of proportion and depends on our momentary perspective.
3) What theme or message do you hope readers will take away from your book?
People tend to see only black and white our days. Once upon we had a gray, but it has long gone. We have lost the “middle” of things, the understanding that life is slightly more complicated than absolutes. Out days; There’s good and evil, and that’s it. People forget there’s also a considerable gap between this two, that is the same middle we’ve long lost. My books seek to give the reader a different point of view; where you can read a book about a fleeing Nazi or a dangerous pedophile, and though you know they are the greatest monsters in the universe, yet, you develop a little compassion to call them a human being. Again, everything has a reason or an explanation, and we have to be willing to listen to the other side, to give them a fair trial opportunity and finally decide, for better or for worse.
4) What drew you into this particular genre?
I don’t have a favorite genre, and anyone who reads all my books can easily see it. I write everything from everything, and usually, it mixes in the books into one piece that has no definition.
Wicked girl
Reasons to kill God, which is the current book that I am going to publish on Amazon, is indeed a historical fiction but it also contains quite a bit of philosophy of life and insights that I expect the reader to confront. It has romance and stories that intersect each other until they create a thriller that draws the reader to enter them, In fact, I began to roll this book at the age of twenty-six after a visit to Poland. The tour in the Nazi extermination camps left me with a strong feeling that I had to do something with all the questions that had accumulated. From that moment to selecting of a literary genre, the road was very short. But if I look at the variety of my work, then I don’t have a favorite style, so is the next book I am about to publish; “Wicked Girl,” it is an abnormal psychological thriller that has caused quite a stir among my readers in Israel.
Reasons to kill God
5) If you could sit down with any character in your book, what would you ask them and why?
This is a fantastic question because in this book (Reasons to kill God) all the characters are controversial and exciting so my answer will be relatively surprising. I will choose to sit with the most boring character in the book; the respectable judge how has no name. His role appears in the first chapter, and in the last episode and fact he will be the one who will sentence my book hero (at least legally). During the trial, the judge undergoes a problematic journey of agony until for a moment he even decides to show some pity for the Nazi defendant also though it does not make it easy for him for a moment. Ostensibly, there is no particular story behind the judge’s character, except for one exception hinted at the name of the book itself and hence the question I appeal to the judge and anyone who reads the book; Who is this God who should be killed in the book?
6) What social media site has been the most helpful in developing your readership?
So far I have published my books only in Israel so that when it comes to advertising abroad, I’m a novice. It’s funny to say it, but I find myself starting from scratch, building a community of readers, contacting people to read the book. Yet I am enjoing every Minute of doing so while i still got time to write. 
7) What advice would you give to aspiring or just starting authors out there?
I’ll start with a question; For whom do you write your words?
Is it for yourself or to an audience that will buy the book in stores.
Separate your need to write words and the marketing efforts of those words. I found writing as the most effective tool (except for my family) to remain sane in the complex world in which we live. Therefore, if I had not written, I don’t know where I would be today and what my mental state would be. On the other hand, the desire that everyone will read what we’ve written and appreciated our work as writers push us to publish our words in all kinds of ways. At first, these are just words that try to break out as a simple post on Facebook or Twitter, then you publish short stories on websites, and finally, you put a book in stores and sell a lot of it (wouldn’t we wish it was so simple). Note that once you put the writing pen on the table and start marketing your words, you are less writer and more of a sells man.
I made this mistake at my beginning as a writer, and from the moment I did so, the writing gradually diminished until it almost disappeared. And if for a moment we go back to the question I asked and the first paragraph of this answer of mine, then this was the moment I understood for whom I write my words.
8) What does the future hold in store for you? Any new books/projects on the horizon?
If my first book succeeds in Amazon as I predict it will, my readers can expect another six books that are already waiting in the drawer. Three of these books have not yet published (not even in Hebrew) and they excite me primarily because of the variety of their stories and the issues they bring to surface. Together with all of these, I am currently working on writing two more books.
Anyone who wants to be updated is freely invited to visit my Facebook page or to the sites of my first two books to published;
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Wanderlost 4: More Shots of Literary Tequila for the Restless Soul by Simon Williams Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

The incredible journey of author Simon Williams continues in Wanderlost 4: More Shots of Literary Tequila for the Restless Soul. Tales of missed celebrity sightings, uncomfortable encounters with a DJ years apart, and more brings this book to life in a hilarious and unique way. Here is the synopsis.

The Synopsis

From being mistakenly besieged by an adoring crowd in a Gothenburg bar, to being pulled over by Arizona highway patrol with an arsenal in the boot of the car, to having a wild elephant stop him from getting a cold beer in Zimbabwe, what else can go wrong on a trip?

These are one man’s gripping stories of wandering our planet that Conde Nast doesn’t want you to know. Simon explains exactly what not to do when you find yourself in a scary situation.

Nobody travels like this anymore. Maybe for good reason. Simon Williams doesn’t go looking for trouble in life, but when he finds it he never keeps his sarcastic mouth shut.

Travelling – it leaves you speechless then turns you into story tellers. Ibn Battuta

The Review

From lessons on living your best life for fear of missing some truly amazing moments, to the finer points of why you shouldn’t argue with a police officer over rugby tickets, author Simon Williams tells tales of amazingly funny, personal and witty stories from his many travels. Even stories of impersonating famous athletes leads the author into some wild nights many won’t forget.

The writing in this book is very personal, like a long letter written to an old friend. The raw, humorous and fast paced read often brings the reader in more, waiting as each story unfolds in directions you’ll never see coming.

The Verdict

Overall this was a fantastic read. Full of adventure, hilarious situations and interactions you’d never believe if the author hadn’t just relayed them to you, this novel continues to bring a funny series of travel books into the hands of eager readers everywhere. Bringing a lighter side to the often stressful world of travel, author Simon Williams does a marvelous job of bringing these stories to life in a refreshing way, and I look forward to reading the final book in this series to see what all of his travels have taught him overall. Be sure to grab your copy of Wanderlost 4: More Shots of Literary Tequila for the Restless Soul by Simon Williams today!

Rating: 8/10

https://www.amazon.com/Wanderlost-Shots-Literary-Tequila-Restless-ebook/dp/B07GN165YJ/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1539834305&sr=1-1&keywords=9780463104521

About the Author

16480199

If sarcasm was your acceptable daily allowance of protein, then author Simon Williams would be a juicy 12-ounce steak sandwiched between two pieces of red meat. In a recent Facebook posting of the 37 things people regret when they die, there was only one item he hadn’t done. Let go of a grudge, but he doesn’t regret it.

Born in Townsville, Queensland Simon now lives in Miami, Florida. He always wanted to see the world and still harbours a strong desire to visit Cambodia, Ceylon, and Leningrad, but is buggered if he can find where they are on a map. He has spent half his life having to tell Americans that he grew up near Sydney, as most of them have no idea that Australia has another city.

He found out how much he enjoyed writing when his 10th grade English teacher told him that he was lazy, so he wrote a 25-page story for his next essay just to annoy him. That is coincidentally when he found out he liked to shit stir people. His sense of humor was developed over 8 years of boarding school. As a way of both evading having the crap between out of him, while also dealing with being a smart boy who sat at the back of the class but who couldn’t see the board because he refused to wear his glasses.

His favourite pastime is trolling his mates on Facebook and taking the piss out of them. He has only been unfriended twice, on both occasions by his wife.

Reasons to kill God by I.V. Olokita Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

A chilling look into the lives of a former Nazi and those around him takes center stage in author I.V. Olokita’s novel “Reasons to kill God”. Here is the synopsis as relayed to me by the author.

The Synopsis

It’s an all-genre book.

It’s a WW2 novel, but it reads like A psychological thriller or a suspicion book.

It translated into English after reaching the top of bestseller charts in Israel.

The central character is a former Nazi extermination camp commander, who is now An ordinary Brazilian enjoying a rich man’s life.

And there is Dios, his son from a Brazilian prostitute, yet he doesn’t know him, nor the fact Dios’s foster mom is Jewish.

And all hell breaks loss as they all become a family.

It’s plot set in Germany, Brazil, Israel, and the U.S.A, starting years early WW2 and ends our days.

The Review

What really interested me about this era of the author’s story is how so many former Nazi officers managed to escape Germany before the fall of the Reich and built luxurious lives for themselves in places such as South America. The sheer volume of money and gold stolen by these officers have allowed criminals to live in luxury off of the blood of the innocent for decades, and some have never gotten the justice they so rightly deserve.

The other amazing thing that drew me into the story was the writing itself. Translated into English after soaring to the top of the charts in Israel, this story is definitely multi-cultural. The book’s beginning chapter opens up to a cold, haunting retelling of events in one of the Concentration Camps during WWII, and shows one of thousands of stories involving the horrendous conditions prisoners faced on a daily basis.

The story also focuses on the concept of family. What defines family? Blood or the bond we build with one another? How does one survive in a household run by an angry father you barely know who harbors the dark secret of his genocidal past? All these questions are explored thoroughly in this novel.

The Verdict

Overall this was a fascinating read to behold. Unfortunately I don’t have a cover to share with you guys yet or a link to preorder, but the story itself was strong, a fast read and filled with amazing history and twists that no one will see coming. A blend of history and thrillers, this was a one of a kind read that will make the jump from the Israeli charts to the US brilliantly. Look out for the release of I.V. Olokita’s novel “Reasons to kill God” in the coming months.

Rating: 8/10

About the Author

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I.V. Olokita has been a practicing doctor most of his life, specializing in management of medical aid to disaster areas all over the world. He has a BA degree in logistics, and an MA degree emergency and disaster situations management. He also volunteers to rescue missions in disaster areas all over the world.

Olokita’s first book (in Hebrew), Ten Simple Rules, was published in 2014. It won an Israeli literary prize, and immediately made an online bestseller. The following year, another book by Olokita, Reasons to Kill God, made a local bestseller in Israel. In May 2016, his third novel, Wicked Girl, was published, to make another great success, and soon presents in English.

I. V. Olokita is a happily married father of two adolescents and a foster father of five cats and two dogs. By the way, he hardly ever sleeps. Instead, he spends his nights on writing.

Olokita’s books are characterized by direct writing, Turns wiry and witty, requiring the reader to delve into and maintain vigilance from the beginning of the book to its surprising end.

http://www.reasons-to-kill-god.com/about.html

https://www.facebook.com/iv.books/

 

Wanderlost 3: More Shots of Literary Tequila for the Restless Soul by Simon Williams Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

Strap in and get ready for another hilarious, unbelievable journey into the life of author Simon Williams in the third book in his travel series, Wanderlost 3: More Shots of Literary Tequila for the Restless Soul. Here is the synopsis:

The Synopsis

From being dragged from an icy river on a white-water rafting trip in Nepal, to going headfirst over the handlebars of a moped in the Greek Isles, to struggling to understand the complexities of the bar fine system of a Thailand whorehouse, what else can go wrong on a trip? 

These are one man’s engrossing stories of wandering our planet that the editor at Frommer’s Guides doesn’t want you to know. Simon explains exactly what not to do when you find yourself in a tricky situation.

Nobody travels like this anymore. Maybe for good reason. Simon Williams doesn’t go looking for trouble in life, but when he finds it he never keeps his sarcastic mouth shut.

Travelling – it leaves you speechless then turns you into story tellers. Ibn Battuta

The Review

Author Simon Williams continues to dazzle and amuse readers with tales that seems impossible to be true. From an unplanned trip to the Taj Mahal that nearly drives the author over the edge to losing friends in Northern Ireland and even hilarious experiences watching passengers in airport terminals, this story has it all.

The author does a marvelous job painting a picture of the world through his eyes, bringing much needed humor and wit to normally stressful and awkward situations travelers have to endure around the world. The language and custom barrier between cultures can lead to unexpected outcomes when traveling abroad, and having a sense of humor about it can help ease the misunderstandings that are bound to happen. The author perfectly brings this imagery to life to showcase the situations one encounters during a life of travel.

The Verdict

Overall I loved this book. It continues an already exciting series of novels that explore one author’s journey in a funny and unique way. Filled with laughter, amazing looks from around the world and a steady dose of sarcasm and wit, this is the travel series you need to be reading now. If you haven’t yet be sure to grab your copy of Simon Williams Wanderlost 3: More Shots of Literary Tequila for the Restless Soul today!

Rating: 8/10

https://www.amazon.com/Wanderlost-Shots-Literary-Tequila-Restless-ebook/dp/B07GN19GZB/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1539657676&sr=1-1&keywords=9780463648001

About the Author

16480199

If sarcasm was your acceptable daily allowance of protein, then author Simon Williams would be a juicy 12-ounce steak sandwiched between two pieces of red meat. In a recent Facebook posting of the 37 things people regret when they die, there was only one item he hadn’t done. Let go of a grudge, but he doesn’t regret it.

Born in Townsville, Queensland Simon now lives in Miami, Florida. He always wanted to see the world and still harbours a strong desire to visit Cambodia, Ceylon, and Leningrad, but is buggered if he can find where they are on a map. He has spent half his life having to tell Americans that he grew up near Sydney, as most of them have no idea that Australia has another city.

He found out how much he enjoyed writing when his 10th grade English teacher told him that he was lazy, so he wrote a 25-page story for his next essay just to annoy him. That is coincidentally when he found out he liked to shit stir people. His sense of humor was developed over 8 years of boarding school. As a way of both evading having the crap between out of him, while also dealing with being a smart boy who sat at the back of the class but who couldn’t see the board because he refused to wear his glasses.

His favourite pastime is trolling his mates on Facebook and taking the piss out of them. He has only been unfriended twice, on both occasions by his wife.

Dracul by Dacre Stoker and J.D. Barker Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.

One of 2018’s most highly anticipated fall reads has to be author Dacre Stoker and J.D. Barker’s novel Dracul. The book is the official prequel to the classic literary horror classic Dracula, written by Dacre Stoker’s great-granduncle Bram Stoker. Taking the concept first explored by Bram and showcasing how the legend of Dracula first began, the story puts the Stoker family in the role of protagonists and explores where the myth and legends truly came from. Here is the synopsis.

The Synopsis

The prequel to Dracula, inspired by notes and texts left behind by the author of the classic novel, Dracul is a supernatural thriller that reveals not only Dracula’s true origins but Bram Stoker’s–and the tale of the enigmatic woman who connects them.

It is 1868, and a twenty-one-year-old Bram Stoker waits in a desolate tower to face an indescribable evil. Armed only with crucifixes, holy water, and a rifle, he prays to survive a single night, the longest of his life. Desperate to record what he has witnessed, Bram scribbles down the events that led him here…

A sickly child, Bram spent his early days bedridden in his parents’ Dublin home, tended to by his caretaker, a young woman named Ellen Crone. When a string of strange deaths occur in a nearby town, Bram and his sister Matilda detect a pattern of bizarre behavior by Ellen–a mystery that deepens chillingly until Ellen vanishes suddenly from their lives. Years later, Matilda returns from studying in Paris to tell Bram the news that she has seen Ellen–and that the nightmare they’ve thought long ended is only beginning.

The Review

I will say it now: this is one of my 2018 picks for best book of the year. It was truly amazing to read, and was as engaging as the original novel written by Bram Stoker over a century ago. Capturing the gothic, Victorian era setting and interweaving history, mythology and handwritten notes from author Bram Stoker himself, the authors really did a wonderful job bringing the life of Bram Stoker and his family to life in a horror based setting.

Now while the world knows the works of Bram Stoker’s Dracula to be a fiction horror tale, what fascinated me about Dracul was not only the amount of history and real life individuals mixed into the narrative, but learning about the creation of Dracula to begin with. Readers will be enthralled to learn the true manuscript first written by Bram Stoker was never meant to be a fictional tale, but through the words of Dacre Stoker and J.D. Barker’s afterward we learn how the book came to be what we know today, and that large portions of the original novel have never been published before. How much of this horrific and scary tale are fiction as we know it, and how much is fact?

The writing itself was amazing. The story was written in an epistolary format, allowing us to delve into the minds of the Stoker family themselves, as well as associates of the family and historical records to match some of the claims. Fans of the original tale of Dracula will love the similarities and context given throughout this novel, while modern day horror fans and readers will be enthralled with the vast character development and parallels between the life of Bram Stoker (in the novel) and the stories told within his novel years later.

The Verdict

This is a must read book for 2018. As a history buff, classic horror fan and overall Bram Stoker enthusiast, this story really captured my attention from the beginning. From the author’s early years battling illness to the life or death battle with unknown forces he and his siblings undertook, this is the kind of story that comes along rarely. If you haven’t yet, be sure to pick up the novel Dracul by Dacre Stoker and J.D. Barker today!

Rating: 10/10

https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0735219346/ref=x_gr_w_glide_bb?ie=UTF8&tag=x_gr_w_glide_bb-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=0735219346&SubscriptionId=1MGPYB6YW3HWK55XCGG2

About the Authors

Dacre Stoker:

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Dacre Stoker, a Canadian citizen and resident of the U.S., is the great-grandnephew of Bram Stoker. He is also the godson of H.G. Dacre Stoker, the commander of the AE2 submarine, whose tactics were instrumental in Gallipoli in World War I.

Dacre, who now calls Aiken, South Carolina home, was a member of the Canadian Men’s Modern Pentathlon Team, Senior World Championships in 1979 and coach of the Canadian Men’s Modern Pentathlon Olympic Team, Seoul, South Korea in 1988. Dacre is married to Jenne Stoker and is the father of two children. He is the Executive Director of the Aiken Land Conservancy.

Dracula: The Un-Dead is Dacre’s first novel.

Dacre Stoker’s Links:

https://twitter.com/dacrestoker?lang=en

https://www.facebook.com/DacreCStoker/

J.D. Barker:

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J.D. BARKER is the internationally best-selling author of Forsaken, a finalist for the Bram Stoker Award for Superior Achievement in a First Novel, and winner of the New Apple Medalist Award. His work has been compared to Stephen King, Dean Koontz, and Thomas Harris. His 4MK Thrillers, The Fourth Monkey and The Fifth to Die, were released in June 2017 and June 2018 respectively. He has been asked by the Stoker family to coauthor the forthcoming prequel to Dracula due out in fall 2018. His novels have been translated into numerous languages and optioned for both film and television. Barker currently resides in Pennsylvania with his wife, Dayna, daughter, Ember, and their two dogs, both of whom sit outside his office door daily, eagerly awaiting his next novel.

A note from J.D.

As a child I was always told the dark could not hurt me, that the shadows creeping in the corners of my room were nothing more than just that, shadows. The sounds nothing more than the settling of our old home, creaking as it found comfort in the earth only to move again when it became restless, if ever so slightly. I would never sleep without closing the closet door, oh no; the door had to be shut tight. The darkness lurking inside needed to be held at bay, the whispers silenced. Rest would only come after I checked under the bed at least twice and quickly wrapped myself in the safety of the sheets (which no monster could penetrate), pulling them tight over my head.

I would never go down to the basement.

Never.

I had seen enough movies to know better, I had read enough stories to know what happens to little boys who wandered off into dark, dismal places alone. And there were stories, so many stories.

Reading was my sanctuary, a place where I could disappear for hours at a time, lost in the pages of a good book. It didn’t take long before I felt the urge to create my own.

I first began to write as a child, spinning tales of ghosts and gremlins, mystical places and people. For most of us, that’s where it begins—as children we have such wonderful imaginations, some of us have simply found it hard to grow up. I’ve spent countless hours trying to explain to friends and family why I enjoy it, why I would rather lock myself in a quiet little room and put pen to paper for hours at a time than throw around a baseball or simply watch television. Don’t get me wrong, sometimes I want to do just that, sometimes I wish for it, but even then the need to write is always there in the back of my mind, the characters are impatiently tapping their feet, waiting their turn, wanting to be heard. I wake in the middle of the night and reach for the pad beside my bed, sometimes scrawling page after page of their words, their lives. Then they’re quiet, if only for a little while. To stop would mean madness, or even worse—the calm, numbing sanity I see in others as they slip through the day without purpose. They don’t know what it’s like, they don’t understand. Something as simple as a pencil can open the door to a new world, can create life or experience death. Writing can take you to places you’ve never been, introduce you to people you’ve never met, take you back to when you first saw those shadows in your room, when you first heard the sounds mumbling ever so softly from your closet, and it can show you what uttered them. It can scare the hell out of you, and that’s when you know it’s good.

jd

J.D. Barker’s Links:

http://jdbarker.com/

https://www.facebook.com/therealjdbarker

https://www.instagram.com/jdbarker_author/

https://twitter.com/jdbarker

5 STAR REVIEWS FOR JACK DAWKINS’!!

5 STAR REVIEWS FOR JACK DAWKINS’!!

Dickensian Advert Portrait v4 (003).pdf Final

Jack Dawkins, AKA as the Artful Dodger, wants to set the record straight about what happened to him after he was obliged to take up lodgings in Newgate Prison.   Thanks to the genius of Lionel Bart, we all have a lasting image of him skipping away into the sunset, arm in arm with Fagin. Well, the young jackanapes is here to tell you that the truth is very different.

You don’t have to know your way round archaic words, history or the works of Mr. Dickens, because Jack has very kindly provided a Glossary that you can refer to as he relates in his own inimitable fashion, his encounters with an unusually erudite Bow Street Runner, murderous villains, turnkeys, philanthropists, Innkeepers, Owlers, passing strangers-and Miss Lysette Godden, the first human being he has ever loved.  Strangely enough, Jack also reveals that, as he conducts what proves to be a highly dangerous search for his mother and father, he finds his true self.

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I thought you might like to take a look at Jack Dawkins’ ghost-writer.

You can see more of both of us on the You Tube video ‘the spirit of the Artful Dodger’,

in which Jack does the decent thing by returning from ‘Mutton Pie and Porter heaven’ to give me a helping hand.