Featured Interview With Andrew Williams
Tell us a little about yourself. Where were you raised? Where do you live now?
I’m English but the politically correct would say I’m British. I was born in Warrington, England but I have moved around quite a bit. I spent my pre-teen years in Droylsden near Manchester. My father and grandfather had a small building contracting company and when they started developing a site in Frodsham (at the time a small Cheshire Village) my father decided to design his own house on part of the site. Once the house was built, we moved to Frodsham and I spent most of my teenage years there.
Once I married Geraldine, for logistical reasons we moved to Rainhill, near St Helens. (For the geographically challenged that’s not far from Liverpool)
We have lived in Rainhill for more years than we care to remember.
Historical Note – Rainhill is famous because of the 1829 Rainhill rail trials where rival locomotives were tested out on the partially completed Liverpool and Manchester railway. The Rainhill trials are notable because they mark the start of the steam railway era.
The trials are also notable because it had the first railway accident.
William Huskisson MP attended the opening of the Liverpool and Manchester Railway. Huskisson stepped onto the railway line greet the Duke of Wellington. Unfortunately, the locomotive Rocket came up on on the parallel track. Huskisson was unable to get out of the engine’s way in time and his left leg was crushed by it.
The badly injured Huskisson died a few hours later. The monument where his remains are buried is the centrepiece of St James Cemetery, Liverpool.
The local library has a railway coach parked behind it with an exhibition of the Trials.
At what age did you realize your fascination with books? When did you start writing?
For me writing is a bit of a compulsion. It’s something you have to do. Some people what to ruin a good walk by chasing golf balls. I like to create. If I’m lucky people what to read what I have created.
The serious writing started when I decided to write: Domestic Building Surveys. Published by Spon. As a surveyor I had read a number of technical books on surveying. As most of them only supplied an outline of home surveys, I wrote a book that gave more detail. I have been led to believe that several British Universities are recommending the book to their students. I think that’s a win!
My next project was A Practical Guide to Alterations and extensions also published by Spon which also had good reviews.
With two books under my belt, I decided I wanted to write sci-fi.
Who are your favorite authors to read? What is your favorite genre to read. Who Inspires you in your writings?
In my childhood, W E Johns;
in later life Dennis Wheatley, H G Wells and John Wyndham.
Vladimir Peniakoff’s war time account Popski’s Private Army certainly had an influence. One of my characters has a shortened version of his name; I hope Vladimir’s relatives won’t be offended. Vlad Pen is one of the good guys who finds himself ensnared by the evil Samantha.
Although cowboy novels aren’t my thing, I enjoyed reading True Grit by Charles Portis. I’m sure my reading must have influenced what I now write and must have helped me.
Tell us a little about your latest book?
Once I had completed my two technical books I became infected by the writing bug. As indicated above, I particularly wanted to write Science Fiction.
Arcadia’s Children: Samantha’s Revenge is not the sort of book written over night. It evolved over time. The sequel took less time because I had developed the framework of places and characters.
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