So, who is Benjamin Ford?
Well I was born in 1969, which would make me forty-something going-on-eighteen, although sometimes I feel more like eighty!
I have always enjoyed writing stories. It was something I excelled at in school. Maths was never my favourite, and I cannot remember much about French or Geography or Science, but History (particularly the Tudor, Stuart and Elizabethan eras) was a particular love, and best of all English.
Being bullied at school (I was particularly weedy and nerdy looking – buck-teeth, NHS specs, bad haircut and bad acne), writing was a way of escaping to another world where I could be the hero rather than the victim. Sometimes I don’t think bullies know the long lasting effects of their actions. Even now I have a distinct lack of self-confidence. But when writing, I’m enveloped in a world of my own.
Following my schooling, I spent the next 26 years working for one company, writing in my spare time. Writing novels has been an ongoing learning curve. I think any writer can always learn something new, and yes, that definitely includes me.
I had a number of rejections for 4 of the 12 trial novels I wrote in my late teens to late twenties. Some of the 14 novels have potential, whilst some are complete dross. But even so, I’m immensely proud of each and every one of them.
I self published 4 of my favourites between 2006 and 2008. Master of the Scrolls and The Master of Prophecy are 2 parts of a trilogy featuring Sawyl Gwilym, a warlock who is one of a race of Elementals who can control the elements. He spends much of his time in exile from Avalon searching for the secrets of alchemy, unaware that he already holds the secrets within his mind. Along the way he crosses swords with Gloria Schofield, who travels from 1987 to the time of Henry VIII and then on to the Victorian era. He also becomes involved in the lives of Matthew Silverthorne in the second book, who seems to be the reincarnation of someone who locked horns with Sawyl Gwilym in the First Century and who is hell bent on revenge.
Portrait of Shade features a painting by the fictional artist Dion Taine. Within this painting is trapped the spirit of one of its subjects – either Emperor Constantine, Emperor Diocletian or Saint Spiridon. This spirit transports Eudora Donat, the owner of the art gallery displaying the portrait, back to 16th Century Constantinople. The story also features reincarnations (like Master of the Scrolls & The Master of Prophecy) and vengeful spirits, as does The Five Tors.
As for the Five Tors itself, well this story followed a similar path to the others, but delved much deeper into the supernatural involving a mysterious village in the depths of Dartmoor that doesn’t feature on any map, and something ancient and immensely evil buried deep beneath the stone house called Naghene Hall.
There will be one more book featuring Sawyl Gwilym. It’s not been the easiest book to write. I’ve abandoned it and restarted it twice. In the end I had to set it aside and move on to something else.
But I will be returning to it this year. I think I’ve finally got a handle on how to proceed with it.
So, that’s a little about me, and a bit about my self-published books.
Next time I’ll tell you a bit more about me, and something about my practice books – including the reason I wrote my very first novel whilst still at school.
And then I’ll introduce you all to Gertrude Harrington, my new character who’s going to be around for a long time.
Bye for now.