Hi Ailsa, thank you for having me on your blog today, it’s great to be here. The journey here was a little bumpy and the suspensions aren’t great on the horse and carts of modern day Cornish travel. It was quite a trek from the countryside to here.
Yes, that’s why I sent the carpet over to you. I think it met up with you about Plymouth.
Nice to share a few stories over a swift brandy or two. I hear you were in the Air Force? How long for and what did you do?
Yes I was a baby-Rupert for four years until invalided out (a habit of mine) and I ended up doing survival instruction and intake training. Me n my lil babies.
I was in the army myself, didn’t quite know what to do with my life at the age of 18, so after an argument with my boss at the time and telling him to shove his job where the sun didn’t shine, I walked from a meat factory in the middle of the country, and instead of walking home I hastily made my way to the nearest recruitment office. I originally applied to join the Royal Marines, but they told me to come back in twelve months, so I went straight downstairs and joined the army instead – that showed them!
We have something else in common – Cornwall! I grew up in Paul near Mousehole and didn’t leave until I came across to France, in the traditional manner on my own boat from Gweek.
I was born in St. Austell, Cornwall, and spent my early years in Bodmin, a proper dive of a town, but that was all forgotten about when I moved to a small village on the outskirts of Truro, called Threemilestone. I remained there until I reached that gloriously legal age of eighteen, when I discovered alcohol and found that if you joined the army, drinking was a huge part of it, so naturally off I trundled with a suitcase under one arm and a can of Stella in the other, much to the happiness of my mother!
It was while serving that the early signs of things to come began to ferment and grow. It started with writing poetry (awful poetry, I might add!) while serving on tour in Kosovo in 1999. It was after I got married in 2000 and given a word processor did was the idea of a novel born, although the story is along the original lines of what was in my mind at the time, and the first draft was terrible. In don’t know where the idea really came from, more that it was born from location rather than intention for a specific genre. I think also, it was because I was reading a lot of Dean Koontz at the time, so was maybe subliminally led astray because of him! Koontz, it’s all your fault! I was also later influenced by Shaun Hutson and the way he wrote.
Tell us about this new book of yours!
The location of Helland is a real place set in the middle of Bodmin Moor, Cornwall and I stayed there as a child. For reasons I cannot explain it has remained with me, so somehow became a natural setting for it. It’s only a simple place with no more than about twenty dwellings. I could never live there however as there is no public house! With its rural setting and bleakness I felt it could be nothing more than a horror story.
I remember Bodmin Moor – done many a weekend exercise on that with newbies.
Once I left the army (the biggest regret of my life) I went long distance lorry driving where I finished writing the book. I did nothing with it for years until a chance encounter in Clarks shoes, where I started chatting to someone I had never met before about writing, and she was studying a creative writing degree and wanted to read it. From there, and with a lot more help from several people, it blossomed into something not just readable, but enjoyable.
As far as the process of writing goes, I knew very little of it at this time so the following two years were a steep learning curve and hours of hard work while not becoming disheartened when it didn’t go right, but this was a time when someone, with whom I am extremely indebted to for her hours of tuition and taught me how it was done. She shall remain nameless on here, but she knows who she is. It is also because of her and my wife I went back into full time education and did an access course in Creative Writing and start my Creative Writing degree in September at Falmouth College of Arts, which is part of Exeter University.
Thank you very much for our chat and I will poop by next time I’m in the area.
Please do – next time I might jump on the carpet and come over for a look at the old place. Thanks for being my guest, Adrien- don’t forget your hoss, I gave him water and a nosebag in the corner of the yard.
What should have been a fresh start for Katie Tremain and her twin twelve year old daughter’s, (Sarah and Tegan) in the heart of the Cornish countryside, quickly turns to tragedy when, Sarah goes missing in the bleak and snowy surroundings of Bodmin Moor. There are no footprints surrounding the house from where he has gone missing, and no evidence of the girl.
Before the police arrive, delayed by the unpredicted snowfall, a stranger arrives claiming he wants to help find, Sarah. Katie has never seen this man before, yet there seems something familiar about him, and Tegan appears to have a connection with him. He has one stipulation – No police. Why, what are his true motives?
A missing girl, a broken mother, a lonely sister and a stranger. Together they look for the missing girl, and Katie is shocked when the stranger’s true identity is revealed, and sickened when she finds out who has her daughter.
This supernatural horror takes a mother to face her worst nightmare.
Adrian lives just outside of Newquay, Cornwall with his wife, Lisa, and four children. He began writing while serving in the British Army, starting with poetry written on blueys (blue sheets of paper that fold into envelopes) as he was on a peacekeeping mission in Kosovo. After leaving the army, he tried being a security guard, but found walking around the supermarket for fourteen hours a day somewhat monotonous, so decided to give long distance lorry driving a go. It was whilst doing this he began to pen “The Helland Reckoning”. The novel was inspired by the small hamlet of Helland, where Adrian stayed with a friend as a child. It had remained in his thoughts for many years, so it became the natural setting for the book. After five years of tramping around the U.K and Europe, he decided it was time to be home more, so began driving fuel tankers around Devon and Cornwall. After breaking his ankle playing football, Adrian was made redundant so set to work rewriting the manuscript. However, Adrian’s last job, working for a portaloo company (which was actually a lot of fun) made him want to chase his dream as a writer, so in September 2015 he returned to full time education studying English, literature and creative writing, achieving mainly distinction grades along the way. He begins a creative writing degree, at Falmouth University, Cornwall in September 2016. His hobbies include spending time with his family, writing, football, skiing, walking and Facebook! Feel free to hunt him down and chat.
Universal link: myBook.to/HellandReckoning