Getting Book 5 out into the World

Mar 21, 2019Books, Brimstone and Ashes, Inspiration, True Stories, Writing

Recently, Brimstone and Ashes, the story I worked on for more than a year, was published.

To be honest, there were times I thought it would never get there. But it has.

I can sleep soundly at night.

I am still an author!


A Year to Forget

The past year has been hell.

A messy divorce. Valuable time lost with my kids. Never-ending battles with an ex-partner. Homelessness and then setting up a new abode.

It has been horrible. Unfortunately, some of it is ongoing.

The fact that I even managed to finish a new book is a miracle.

Looking back through my files I found the first draft for Brimstone and Ashes was completed in January 2018. Following this, all my time was taken up with establishing a new life for myself.

It has taken more than a year. I am not there yet.


During rewrites I recall living in fear that I was putting too much of my situation into the story.

The novel delves deeper into the relationship the good witch Anaïs Blue has with own her family. Her journey is different from mine, but she has had to deal with similar things.

Her family is broken. There is infighting between her relatives which is destroying the equilibrium of the universe in a magical sense. Paramount is the fact that Anaïs’s mother is a mystery. No one knows who she is. This problem is not solved in the current book, but will be solved in the future.

My experiences, and particularly those of my children, have been a source of inspiration.

Parents do the most awful things to one another at the expense of their offspring. My son in particular is suffering most of all. He is a problem solver. He has a big heart. He wants to make it all good. Unfortunately it is broken to the point of no return. The relationship that is, not his heart. Although, in retrospect, that has been broken too.

Nevertheless, it is not his responsibility to try to fix the relationship. Yet he persists.

Anaïs finds herself in a similar situation.

She is alone, and as with my son, an insurmountable amount of responsibility has fallen onto her shoulders. Like my son, she persists. She drives herself to find a solution.

Along the way she collects a band of supporters. People who are willing to help her. She accepts their assistance and with it she faces her biggest challenge so far. Yet the ultimate showdown—the real challenge—she must face alone.

However, Anaïs resides in a fictitious world. The death and destruction is only on paper.

The real world does not offer the same. You can’t shut the book or depend on magical forces to come to your rescue. There are battles you must face. There are fights which cannot be walked away from.

To face them is truly putting yourself on the line.


I do not have the power of magic on my side. Although, I wish at times I did.

The best I can do is to support my son in his time of need. To give him the strength he needs to face the trials which fall in his path. To not give up on him.

In the writing of previous books he was my structural editor. I read everything to him. If he didn’t understand anything, I changed it. Although, when I think about it, this rarely happened. However, he did come up with solutions or constructive comments. He gave me new ideas which helped me move forward with the story.

He has had very little involvement with the last book, Brimstone and Ashes. We have seen very little of each other this past year. I think now is the time to read it to him. To let him see that he is not alone.

Help is there for him when he needs it. The responsibility does not fall solely on his shoulders.

The Power of Bedtime Stories

I hope that through this book he will see a way forward. That no matter how small and helpless you are, with persistence and the right help you can overcome the greatest of challenges.

In the real world, given enough time, the vast majority of problems can be solved.

Thankfully you and I are not fictitious little witches who must carry the burdens of the entire universe around with us.

Have you had a similar experience?


Let me know and leave a comment below.

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