Wednesday, 18 October 2017

The Cellist release date


Good news!

My new book The Cellist will be available from Amazon in both paperback and Kindle format from 1st November.
Look out for it to appear on Amazon and order your copy.






                Mia Ashton, a hard working young cellist has always dreamt of playing to large audiences.  With a series of classical concerts designed to help boost her career and the support of an agent, her desire to become a top class musician is finally within her reach, but then tragedy strikes.
One of her colleagues is found dead soon after performing with Mia and this sets off a chain reaction that threatens to destroy everything that she has worked for.  Living in the shadow of a serial killer stirs memories from her past, pushing her ever closer to breaking point. 
Will Mia find the strength to carry on or will the killer put an end to her dreams?
Perhaps the price of fame is too great.

Happy Reading


Saturday, 14 October 2017

The Belgae Torc

The Belgae Torc is the first book in The Torc Trilogy. 

The story of the Belgae Torc begins in the Iron Age and the first 10% of the book is dedicated to events that describe the beginning of an epic journey.

Don’t be put off by this because the plot soon develops and you are brought up to date with Orlagh and the modern day characters.






Synopsis:-


England 50 BC - A Celtic symbol of power and wealth, a Torc wrought from white gold, a trophy for a king.
Luain Mac Lanis, warrior turned metal smith, is commissioned to make a magnificent Torc, but he knows nothing of the curse surrounding the strange metal.  The only way to lift the curse is to offer the Torc to the Gods in a sacrificial ceremony.
Two thousand years later the Torc is listed on the inventory of a sunken ship.  Dr Orlagh Gairne, a leading archaeologist, is sent to work with Jack Harrington and his crew of salvage experts.  It’s Orlagh’s job to identify the Torc and ensure its safe delivery to the National Museum, but the operation is not as straightforward as expected.  Aided by his team of mercenaries and an historical expert, Jack unearths a wave of hatred spreading across Europe.  With the past weaving tightly with the present, they must infiltrate the terrorists’ lair in order to prevent a worldwide catastrophe.
  ISBN 978-01-908341-82-2

The Belgae Torc from Amazon:-
 Kindle £1.99 Paperback £9.99
 Kindle $2.57 Paperback $14.99

The other books in The Torc Trilogy are:- The Gordian Knot and Cutting the Gordian Knot (The Final Solution).
See my website for further information.  www.kevinmarshnovels.co.uk 

Wednesday, 4 October 2017

The Cellist, how it all began.


A quick review of how The Cellist became the next story in my 'Thriller' series.





The Cellist began life as a modern day/historical novel.  I completed a few chapters several years ago before setting it aside to write The Gordian Knot, the second book in The Torc Trilogy.  It was always my intention to return to this novel and complete it so with that in mind I wrote notes on how the plot was to develop and made up comprehensive character profiles.
When I eventually picked up the file and began to familiarise myself with the story I discovered that other ideas were beginning to develop.  It’s true that certain characters appear as real people in the mind of their creator and often drive the plot, sometimes with alarming consequences.  I’ve had characters in previous books end up in some strange and rather unexpected situations leaving me to come up with a solution to get them out of it.  Anyway, out went the historical element along with some of the principle characters from that part of the story.  Most of the modern day characters remained.  Mia underwent a surname change don’t ask me why, it was probably something to with the plot lurching in a completely different direction.  Who am I to question the Principle character?
The Cellist was always going to be linked with The Witness, I see it as book two in a series of stories that share characters and places.  Although not a sequel, The Cellist does seem to answer some of the questions left open at the end of The Witness.  It would be an advantage to have read The Witness before tackling this book as you will have a greater understanding of where previous characters and events fit.
Many interesting subjects have been explored in The Cellist and I had fun researching certain aspects of the plot before weaving a story around my findings.  It was never my intention to alienate specific groups of society so hopefully I have dealt with issues sympathetically.

I’m planning to write further thrillers that link these books together so some of my characters will appear again.

Thursday, 28 September 2017

The Cellist update


The PDF version of The Cellist has just arrived by e-mail from my publisher.  All I need to do now is read it (again), and iron out any problems caused by the PDF process.  Once that is done the book will finally be ready for publication.



I want to share with you some pictures of the writing process, how the book was created.



I prefer to write the story by hand first in notebooks.  Once the first draft is done, I then re-write by hand before typing.  This is the begining of the editing process.
The two manuscripts that you can see are the second typed draft and the copy for the proof readers.


This is the first typed draft, heavily red penned and edited.  The book is edited at least three times before the proof reader gets to read it.  Then further edits and corrections are made before it is ready for the publisher.  Once it has gone through the PDF process I still manage to find and correct the odd error or typo, even then some still seem to find their way into the finished product.



This little notebook is most important, I usually carry it with me when writing the book.  It contains ideas, thoughts and research notes many of which did not get into the book.

I use black BIC pens to write my stories, red BIC pens for editing.  I usually get through about ten pens per book.
I prefer to use these pens because a) they are cheap and can be bought in boxes of 50 and b) they are the best quality cheap pens I can find.


One of the many, next stop the re-cycling bin.

The Cellist is due out later in October as a paperback and on Kindle from Amazon.  It can also be ordered from good bookshops.  
More details to follow.

Monday, 25 September 2017

Warning


Warning, do not read this book without having read the two that precede it.  
Cutting the Gordian Knot is the final book in the The Torc Trilogy




Authors note


In Greek mythology, King Gordius of Phrygia tied a knot that defied all who tried to untie it.  An oracle prophesised that anyone who could undo this Gordian Knot would rule Asia.  Alexander the Great simply cut the knot with one stroke of his sword, hence the saying ‘to cut the Gordian Knot’, meaning to solve a difficult problem by a simple, bold and effective action.

When I began writing The Gordian Knot, I already had an idea for the title of the next book.  Cutting the Gordian Knot became my working title which I thought very apt because of the intractable problems facing my characters.
This final book is the story that concludes everything.  Like Alexander the Great, my characters will have to solve all the problems by a simple, bold and effective action.
I was a little worried that this title would be too close to that of the previous book so I decided on a change and it became Cutting the Gordian Knot (the final solution)
With book one, The Belgae Torc, I tried to establish a sense of history that would remain throughout the trilogy.  The mysterious torc and the powers surrounding it is a reminder of just how significant symbols like this once were.  I used this novel to establish the main characters and to get a feeling for their individual personalities.  I also set in motion a relationship between Orlagh and Jerry that would develop through each novel.
Book two, The Gordian Knot continues with the historical references but I wanted to bring these closer to home.  By introducing Harald and Freya, a direct connection could be made between the events of 1940s Germany and the Phoenix Legion.  I wanted to do this using the human element; this was also the first step in drawing many of the characters together.  We are all influenced in some way by our pasts and history has a habit of repeating itself.


For more information about this and the other books in the trilogy check out my website, www.kevinmarshnovels.co.uk  


Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Interview


Interview September 2017

We asked author Kevin Marsh about his life as an engineer, teacher and writer.



Q.        What did you do before becoming a writer?

A.        When I left school, I served an apprenticeship as a sheet metalworker.
            I had intended to stay on at school for the 6th year, but the job opportunity came along, which included a place at the local Technical College, so I took it.
It was 1977 and I left school at Easter to join a small Fabrication Company where my father worked as a fabricator welder.  (He was a Blacksmith by trade).
Elvis Presley died in the August of that year and I can still remember the shock of his passing, the noisy workshop becoming silent with disbelief as the news was broadcast on the radio.
In September, I started college sponsored by my company. The first year I was a full time student attending college five days a week including one evening for forty two weeks.
After that I was there as a day release student for a further four years.  It was great fun, I thoroughly enjoyed my time as an apprentice, then in 1982 I was made redundant.

Q.        Why were you made redundant?

A.        For some companies this was standard procedure, move the trainee on as soon as he qualifies, but I did not expect that to happen to me.  I had just got married and had a mortgage, but it did not take long for me to find another job.  Those days it was quite easy to find employment in the trade, there were plenty of fabrication and welding companies in the area.  It turned out to be a good experience as I was able to learn processes and procedures that I had not seen or used before.  Within a couple of years I started my own company.

Q.        Did you write anything during this period?

A.        Not really, I toyed with various ideas, made notes and wrote part of a book set in the Victorian era, I still have the notes. 

Q.        You started your business in the early 1980s?

A.        Yes, it was about 1983, I went out on my own working pretty much out of the back of a van and in my garden shed.  It took a few months to find a workshop but this gave me time to build up my business.  Over the next few years, the business developed and I began to employ others.  We specialised in all kinds of steel fabrications, steel staircases and fire escapes, wrought iron gates, railings and balconies, mini skips and gun cabinets.  It was a varied mix.

Q.        Why did you leave all that behind to go into teaching?

A.        In 1997, I decided to change direction so proposed a basic metalwork course to the Adult Education Authority.  They liked the idea and found a little workshop in a school and a trial course began.
            At this time, I was studying for my Teaching Qualification and needed to have classroom hours logged as part of the course.  My metalwork class was workshop based and not the type of teaching required for the module I was studying, so I proposed a Creative Writing course.  This course proved popular and I was able to log more than enough teaching hours to fulfill the requirements.
            By this time, I had reduced the size of my business but was still working full time, teaching in the evenings.  I decided to take on a trainee and enrolled him on a course at the college where I had studied.  Some of my old lecturers were still there so I told them about the work I was doing with Adult Education.  There was a part time lecturing position available at the college so I applied and got the job.  Over the next year I began to run my business down and spent more time studying for my teaching qualification which I gained in 2000.  It was then that a full time position became available so I worked at the college as a lecturer in the Fabrication Dept until 2009.

Q.        What about your writing?

A.        I was concentrating on writing short stories for magazines, but received more rejection slips than I care to mention.  It was a good discipline, writing complete stories of between one to two thousand words, quite different from the technical papers and lesson plans that I wrote on a daily basis.


Q.        What did you do after 2009?

A.        I joined a Military Engineering School teaching sheet metalwork.  This gave me a lot more time to think about my writing and by 2012 I had completed my first novel.

Q.        The Belgae Torc was your first book.  Why an action adventure novel?

A.        An action adventure novel with an historical background.  I love history and find the research element very interesting.  The Belgae Torc satisfied all of my interests.  It was a steep learning curve as I had never written a full length novel before.  There was far more research than I anticipated and my characters kept getting themselves into very awkward situations.  I had no idea at the time that the book would develop into a trilogy.

Q.        How did that happen?

A.        The Belgae Torc was advertised in a history magazine both in the UK and USA.  The editor I was dealing with got the idea that this was book one of three, he came up with The Torc Trilogy and I think this appeared in the published article, so I had little choice, I had to write two more books.

Q.        Before you wrote The Gordian Knot, you produced a psychological thriller, The Witness.  Why?

A.        The Witness is a completely different book.  I had loads of notes already prepared and most of the plot spinning around in my head, so I chose to spend the next few months working on it.

Q.        The witness came out the following year, but your readers had to wait until 2014 before The Gordian Knot was published.  Did that worry you?

A.         No not really.  I realised that The Belgae Torc would not appeal to everyone so I wrote The Witness for a completely different audience. 

Q.        The moment The Gordian Knot came out you began to write the final book in the trilogy.  Why did it not appear until 2016?

A.        Cutting the Gordian Knot took a lot more planning.  It’s the final book in The Torc Trilogy and there were many problems to sort out in order to bring the story to a satisfactory conclusion. 
I wanted the lives of Orlagh and Jerry to appear normal, but at the same time, the action adventure element had to continue.  It is a little more far-fetched than the previous plots, but I had tremendous fun writing it.

Q.        Do you plan to write more action adventure books?

A.         I would like to develop some of the characters from The Torc Trilogy.   Orlagh, Jerry and Jack will most probably appear in further adventures.

Q.        How did you come up with the name Orlagh Gairne?

A.         I was listening to the Irish band The Corrs singing one of their songs and during the chorus the words ‘All Again’ are repeated.  All I could hear was Orlagh Gairne, so the character was created.
            I used this in a paragraph in The Belgae Torc.  Orlagh was introducing herself to Jack and Paul, they turned to each other in confusion and said, ‘did she just say her name was All Again?’

Q.        The Cellist is your current novel.  Is this one a crime thriller?

A.         Sort of, although I prefer to call it a thriller.  It follows on from The Witness, but is not a sequel.  Characters and places from The Witness appear in The Cellist, which can be read as a standalone novel.  Readers would however have a greater understanding of the plot if they have already read The Witness.

Q.        Do you intend to write more books in this genre?

A.         Yes, I have a number of books planned.  Characters and places from previous stories in this series will appear again.  I intend every plot to overlap.

Q.        What next?

A.         I am working on something at the moment although it is only at the research stage.  I have some ideas for the plot but nothing has been finalised yet, it is very much work in progress.

 


Monday, 18 September 2017

The Cellist


The Cellist

The Cellist, an exciting new thriller by Kevin Marsh

(This book includes characters and places from The Witness)




Mia Ashton, a hard working young cellist has always dreamt of playing to large audiences.  With a series of classical concerts designed to help boost her career and the support of an agent, her desire to become a top class musician is finally within her reach, but then tragedy strikes.
One of her colleagues is found dead soon after performing with Mia and this sets off a chain reaction that threatens to destroy everything that she has worked for.  Living in the shadow of a serial killer stirs memories from her past, pushing her ever closer to breaking point. 
Will Mia find the strength to carry on or will the killer put an end to her dreams?
Perhaps the price of fame is too great.



The actual cover 

This exciting new book will be available from Amazon as a paperback and on Kindle from late October.  More details to follow.