It’s Sunday… time for some rambling thoughts!

Well actually it’s Father’s Day. The one day of the year when men are allowed to be all soppy and sentimental… and will allow their children to be all soppy and sentimental over them as well.

Being connected to quite a few people from all over the world through facebook can be entertaining, but it can also be useful for keeping up with your family.

My cousin is currently wandering around Europe as part of her degree and because she won’t be with her dad today, she wrote him a poem on his FB wall.  It brought tears to my eyes because it is so expressive.

Other friends are posting pictures of their dads and telling us why they feel their father’s are so special. Some of these stories are funny, some are sad, others are a combination, but the fact remains that every single rememberance is full of one emotion in particular – Love.

Love is the glue that holds families together and even in those families that have been split apart by distance or tragedy, the love shared is the stretchy, elastic that keeps you linked.

My Dad is in New York. He moved there with my step-mother a long while back and even though he is five thousand or so miles away, I can feel the elastic between us, stretched tightly and tugging on my heart. So I thought I would try and explain to you what makes my Dad special to me…

We’ll start with a blast from the past…

Puff the Magic Dragon is one of the few songs I can remember my dad playing and singing to me when I was little. It is the reason that my muse is named Puff and that I love dragons.

Puff the Magic, Storytelling Dragon

My dad likes to design things and as well as producing things for his Second Life obsession, he is also a Master Craftsman and an Artist.

Dad’s Artwork

I associate the smell of wood with my dad; he taught me a lot about crafting just from letting me hang around his workshop when he was turning and because of what I’d learned from watching him, I was able to pass my workshop safety on the Lathe without actually having any lessons on using it.

*grins*

So I decided to use my craft to create something for him  – a poem:

To Dad

I miss you a lot,
You’ve been gone a long time,
You are my dad,
You age like good wine.

You taught me about fish,
You taught me about wood,
You taught me to know,
The bad from the good.

You showed me the beauty,
That comes from the heart,
In music and crafting,
You gave me the start.

Now Puff is my muse,
I know he’s not new,
And I will never lose,
The love I have for you

It’s not perfect, but then again, my dad isn’t perfect – what human is?

My Dad and Step-Mother

My children have a wonderful Father.

TOH isn’t perfect either; but he is loving, funny, playful. He enjoys discovering new things and teaching the children about them. He can always be counted on to entertain them with paint or clay or animation and he’s not above chasing them around the supermarket with his “tickle fingers” making them shriek with laughter…

*rolls eyes and sighs*

TOH and one of his favourite creatures…

He loves animals and if we had the space (and money), I am convinced that he’d have so many cats that I wouldn’t be able to turn around for fear of tripping up! If it were legal to have tigers and large cats as pets, TOH would have a White Tiger and a Snow Leopard as well – he’s had to make do with adopting a Snow Leopard through the WWF instead.

Everyone’s father is special in some way and I devoutly hope that my children grow to appreciate theirs, even when he takes up the role of Disciplinarian / Chief Embarrasser / Daughter Protector as they turn into teenagers.

Happy Father’s Day to all Fathers, no matter where they are, may your elastic bonds never snap.

Winner of the Welcome to Wherever Spring Writing Contest, Paul Trembling!

Announcer: For the first time in over a year, the World of the Tiger Princess has returned! So put your hands together to welcome the wonderful lady herself, The Tiger Princess!

Audience gives a standing ovation as the Tiger Princess appears onstage, accompanied by a large white tigress and a handsome dark haired man.

 

Tiger Princess: Thank you so much everyone! I’ve been so busy that I’ve not had much time to interview anyone so it is fitting that I return with a writer who is almost as busy as I am!

Audience: Ooooo….

Tiger Princess: He’s written a crime novel based on personal experience and has dipped his toe into the fantasy waters with a series of stories which explore the role of women in fantasy as well as being an excellent example of why dragons can be really nasty…

Audience: Ahhh…

Put your hands together to welcome Paul Trembling to the World of The Tiger Princess!

Holding out for a Hero by Bonnie Tyler plays as the tigress and man leave the stage and return with Paul.

Tiger Princess: Welcome to the show, Paul.

Paul Trembling: It’s lovely to be here.

They sit down and the man and tigress go back stage.

Tiger Princess: Where do you live, were you born and bred there?

Paul Trembling: I currently live in Brownhills, which is near Walsall in the West Midlands. I was born inGuildford, inSurrey – and I still have a bit of the accent to prove it!

Tiger Princess: Do you have kids? Please tell us a little about them?

Paul Trembling: We’ve got three boys. The oldest one, Tom, is just completing his course at University, where he’s been doing something very clever and technical to do with computer animation. He’s a wiz at things like Photoshop – the cover for my crime novel ‘Can of Worms’ is his work. (Please excuse the little plug!)

Matt is the second lad, just turned 15. Like me, he’s very creative (we’ve collaborated on some writing) and he’s also been involved in some drama. Unlike me, he’s very talented musically – plays guitar and keyboard, writes his own songs, etc.

The youngest is Andy – 12 years old and, like Matt, has inherited some music gifts from his Mum! He plays piano / keyboard. Also regularly beats me at anything we play together on the X-box (but they all do that).

Tiger Princess: Do you have another job apart from writing? For how many hours? How do you feel about the ‘other’ job?

Paul Trembling: I’m a full time Crime Scene Investigator. Which (as I say every day) is nothing like CSI on TV! Still, not a bad job as jobs go, and on some days can be really good! But I can’t deny that there’s many times when I’d rather be writing instead.

Tiger Princess: Which character trait do you like best about yourself and why? Which trait would you rather do without?

Paul Trembling: Tough one! To change the question slightly, I like myself best when I’ve managed to be unselfish, and put someone else first. And obviously, when I get that back to front is when I least like myself!

Tiger Princess: How did you start writing?

Paul Trembling: I started story telling before I could write. Some of my earliest memories are of laying in bed at night making up stories. At school, of course, ‘Write a short story’ was one of my favourite classes – though I had trouble sticking to the ‘short’ format. What was supposed to be a one lesson exercise frequently turned out to be an epic that took several lessons to complete – though that did include the illustrations! I feel sorry for my teachers.

Tiger Princess: How do you structure your writing day?

Paul Trembling: Structure?

I wish I could manage such a thing! I write when I have the time, and the space, and when the need to write drives me to it – which is quite often! Mornings are often a good time, but when an idea really takes over it can be anytime. If I’m not actually writing, I’m probably thinking about writing. Most of what I put down on (virtual) paper has already been written several times in my head.

Someday – when I’m not working (or at least not working shifts) and I can take control of my life, I might be able to actual put some structure in place. Dream on!

Tiger Princess: If you could meet any writer, living or dead, who would it be and why?

Paul Trembling: I remember answering this one before somewhere. I think I said C.S. Lewis – and he would still be my first choice. For his creativity and imagination and honesty and clarity and depth of thought. Particularly for the way he tackles questions of Christian apologetics – which still seem to me to be fresh and original, even after all these years.

Another candidate might have been the Christian writer and speaker Adrian Plass, for many of the same reasons. Plus his brilliant sense of humour. However, I have actually met him – albeit briefly – so I can tick him off the list.

Tiger Princess: What is your favourite music to write to and does it inspire your work?

Paul Trembling: I don’t listen to music while I’m writing. The quieter the better, for me. Music is something I have on while I’m doing something else, like driving. I can’t think of anything I’ve written that was directly inspired by music.

Tiger Princess: Are you a Paper and Ink or a Computer and Keyboard writer?

Paul Trembling: Keyboard, always. My handwriting is abysmal!

Tiger Princess: What is your pet hate in books that you buy for yourself?

Paul Trembling: I try and be forgiving of all faults, because I may be guilty of them myself! Clumsy sentence structures, obvious anachronisms – they all break the flow of a story and detract from the readers experience, but even with extensive editing, things like that can sneak in.

I do find it irritating when characters or circumstances are juggled around to fit the plot. It feels very contrived, but even some top selling writers have done it! (Or at least, I thought they had!)

Tiger Princess: What books do you like to read?

Paul Trembling: Mostly Fantasy and Science Fiction. Some historical fiction and history, a bit of crime, a few thrillers. I’ll have a go at almost anything.

Tiger Princess: And Finally – if you won the Booker Prize, how would you celebrate?

Paul Trembling: I’ve no idea! Such dizzy heights are way beyond my aspirations. I have quite a few competition entries in the pipeline for this year, and if I win any of those I’ll be stunned!

Tiger Princess: I’m certain that you’ll do well and we’ll all will you onward! Thank you for being so patient and answering my questions.

Paul Trembling: Thank you, you’re welcome!

Tiger Princess: (To audience) Tune in again soon and we’ll bring another wonderful writer or artist to you!

Writer Wednesday: Paul Trembling

I’ve known Paul Trembling for a couple of years now. He’s a talented writer who seems to be able to turn his hand to almost anything – he won the FSS Contest at least once (I owe him a winners badge) and since I started “Welcome to Wherever”  he has been a regular contributor.

He has his own website where you can find out more about him and he has an author’s page on Facebook so that you can keep up-to-date with his latest books.

And yes, he has published more than one!

Here’s the List – in order of publication :-

A MURDER. A CLUE. AN OBSESSION.

Scenes of Crime Officer Marcie Kelshaw didn’t like her colleague, Ben Drummond. Nobody did, really. Nevertheless, when she stumbles across a clue to his murder, she thinks it should be followed up. Even without any official backing. Even when it strains her friendships, risks her career, and endangers her family.

The trail of clues leads to some dark and terrifying places, to a murderous climax, and the truth about Ben’s murder – which was not at all what it seemed. Along the way, she’ll open more than one can of worms. Written by a serving Scenes of Crime Officer, this story will take you into the world of ‘CSI – UK’, where every day might bring a burnt out car, a burglary, or a murder. 
THIS IS CSI UK. LESS GLOSSY, MORE GRITTY.

Reviews:

Finally a realistic novel! –  14 Jan 2012 By CSI Motty
 
“As a operational CSI myself it was really nice to read a realistic book about police investigations, I can actually see some of the characters in my office!!!

This book is incredibly gripping, I was given it for Xmas and had read it by Boxing Day, it keeps building and building and the ending is really exciting. Good solid plot throughout, excellent character development, a thoroughly rivetting read!

Looking forward to the next one, Paul.”

 * * *

On the edge of my seat, 10 Oct 2011 By Dr Mike
 
“Can of Worms kept me reading every spare moment to find out what happens. The twists and turns needed a satnav to predict, but no post code so you have to keep at it. Great stuff Paul when’s the next one perhaps a “Can of Beans”?”
 
* * *
Great British Crime, 13 Mar 2012 By Babs Morton
 

“This is a cracking British crime thriller, with a believable female lead in Marcie, the SOCO who can’t seem to resist getting involved, despite being thwarted at every turn. I thoroughly enjoyed this. Good solid investigative details against a clever plot that culminates in a thrilling finale.

Well worth a read, highly recommended.”

 
 
 

In this world, there’s no St George.When Rimsey Stolworth is selected to be the next sacrifice to the dragon, she knows she’s in trouble. She’s the tenth to be chosen, and the other nine all died. Unpleasantly.

But she has three things in her favour – guts, brains and a book about dragons.

It could be the dragon that’s in trouble!

 
 Reviews:
 
Dragons Beware!, 13 Mar 2012 By Babs Morton
 
“I picked this up after reading another book by the same author. Different genre entirely but equally well written.

I liked this, it has a whimsical feel to it, yet the humour is very cleverly done so as to appear understated. Rimsey is a gutsy heroine, who uses her brains and wit rather than brawn, to thwart Dragons and Dragon Slayers alike. All three stories are easy, fun reads and could certainly be developed into a longer series of stories.”
 
* * *
 
Very entertaining., 9 Feb 2012 By R. Jones
 

“Sprinkled with light quirky humour, interesting characters, mild social comment and bloodthirsty dragons, I heartily recommend Paul Trembling’s “The Ways of Dragons” to anyone. Short but tremendously entertaining, at this price a snap.
Go for it.”

 
 * * *
 
An entertaining tale., 5 Feb 2012 By Marj
 
“A short but very entertaining read. And I did enjoy the quote from the first story, when the supposed-to-be virgin sacrifice to the dragon tells her parents that she’d thought of losing her virginity so that she would no longer qualify. ‘Better up the duff than down the gullet.’
 
But anyway, as we soon learn, the dragon doesn’t care whether the human is virgin, young or even female. Rimsey is a great heroine, with a dose of common sense as well as a big dose of courage. Three enjoyable tales for a tiny price.”
 

Rimsey is enjoying her new life as apprentice to Aldors Morrin, Master Dragon Slayer. It’s steady work – there are plenty of dragons out there. Plus which she’s learning new skills, travelling widely, and meeting some interesting people. People like Sir Marnon of the Dragon Slayer’s Guild, and the fascinating Dragon Priests. Of course, it’s not all glamour. On the down side, those interesting people are trying to kill her, and the dragons want to eat her.

But there’s one thing all of them – Dragon Slayers, Dragon Priests, and Dragons – will learn the hard way: 

You don’t mess with Rimsey!

 
This is the latest book and doesn’t have any reviews… yet!
 
I have read all of the Rimsey Stories in my capacity as Editor of Welcome to Wherever, and I can fully recommend both of the last two books.
 
The writing is smooth, the comedy wry and very funny; but the main thing that I find most engaging about these stories is the main character. Rimsey is a strong, independent woman who knows exactly what she wants, in a realm that doesn’t recognised the equality of women.
 
I adore these books (and coming from someone who loves dragons, that means a lot!) and think that Rimsey should be travelling a lot further than just her realm – she ought to be teaching teenagers in this realm a thing or two about their gender!
 
 
So, there you go – three wonderful books to add to your kindle collection. Hopefully you’ll enjoy them as much as I do!