Tag: Alien

Author Interview: Dawn Chapman

Posted December 20, 2016

The Secret KingDawn Chapman has been creating sci-fi and fantasy stories for thirty years. Until 2005 when her life and attention turned to scripts, and she started work on The Secret King, a 13-episode sci-fi TV series, with great passion for this medium.

In 2010, Dawn returned to her first love of prose. She’s been working with coach EJ Runyon from 2012 who’s encouraged her away from fast-paced script writing, to revel in the world of TSK and Letháo as an epic prose space journey.

Dawn lives in a country village in the UK with her husband, parrot and 30 koi.

  • When did you first discover your love for writing? 

My earliest memory is of wanting a typewriter, I was 6. And I wrote my first story titled ‘Roger the Fox’ I couldn’t use the typewriter well so my next door neighbour typed it up for me and I paid her from my earnings as around the village, shopping or car washing.

  • Do you have a favourite place to write?

I pretty much write anywhere, but a couch is as good a place as any. I do prefer no noise. Though the other half will put the TV on as soon as he comes in. I’m good at blocking out anything he watches, but if he puts a Sci-Fi program on I’m soon distracted.

  • Do you have a writing routine or process that you adhere to?

I am usually home at 3:15 pm so anything from 4  pm onwards is my writing schedule till 8 pm when I’m usually too tired and turn to social media or critiquing for my team-mates.

  • Are there any authors or specific books you aspire to?

Not really, of course, I’d love to earn a living, but I will do everything I can in my own time till I get to that point.

  • What inspired you to write the novel of, The Secret King- Lethao

It was a friend who pointed out NaNoWrimo (after scriptFrenzy was culled) and she said, have you ever thought about a TSK novel? I hadn’t but I was soon able to write it up after all the work on our TV show. 

  • Can you tell us a little about your book?

Set 18 years prior to our penned TV series, is where book 1 begins.

Kendro, King of the Aonise, can do nothing to prevent their sun from collapsing, consuming their home planet Letháo in a single fiery blast. Running out of time and options, he evacuates the entire population, setting off into the unknown galaxy in four crowded ships. Under constant danger from their ancient enemy, the Zefron, treasonous dissent seeps into his inner circle. Threatened inside and out, Kendro struggles with whom to trust, until a mysterious vision finally brings hope to the distraught King. A new home awaits the Aonise, if Kendro can only unite them long enough to survive the journey.

  • Do you have a favourite amongst all your characters?

No matter where I am in the whole series, I have to still say Taliri is my favourite character. He is the secret prince/king after all. His story is the first I wrote, back in 2007 when I broke my hand at work. I penned a feature film (yes, one handed) and after joining a website called Zhura and meeting my co-writer Steven it is where the TV series stemmed from. I spent a lot of time with Taliri, my co-writer, and the world around them. Everything else, of course, I still love, and my other two fav characters are Ainoren Broki and the human character – Sarah Mendoza, whose story is set far into TSK’s timeline. 

  • Does your book contain a message for readers to consider? 

I like to think there are a few hidden messages. The world around us, how we accept people no matter the race or religion, who they love. But mostly the story is about normal and some extraordinary people who struggle through life, and hope to protect those around them they love. Pretty much what most of us go through on a day to day basis.

  • Because we’re about to launch book 2, First Contact, I’m including a short excerpt from there.

A loud ringing echoed through the house. Prime Minister Robert Walker bolted upright. His wife, Christine, still slept, her chest rising and falling in even breaths. Is that… the…

His heart pounded in his chest, as the ringing stopped. Silence. No…

Glancing at Christine, he let out a breath seeing she hadn’t stirred. The chemo from yesterday had wiped her out. They were trying to rest, and now, he was terrified what little rest they’d had at their country holiday home would be ruined. As the phone rang again, Walker threw the covers off and reached out for it. Damn, this will wake her.

Monday, 23rd Sept 2041 – 1:14 AM flashed on his clock.

Picking up his phone. Walker hit answer and slid out of the warm bed into the cooler air of their hallway.


Christine murmured, turning over, and searching blindly in the bed for him.first-contact

“Robert?” The Chief of Defence’s adrenaline-pumped voice almost screamed across the line. Walker listened to words he never thought he’d hear. “We’re at Threat Level Critical. A copter is on its way. Suffok will meet you at the nearest hotel conference room.”

What? Critical? The UK hadn’t issued critical status ever. What on Earth is going on?

“I’ll be right there.” Then, Walker thought of Christine. He couldn’t leave her alone. Not tonight. Phoning his sister-in-law, he asked her to come over and stay with Christine.

There were highly trained nurses stationed in the house, but they weren’t family. Guilt clutched as his conscience, as he headed back to the bedroom and dressed.

Christine had settled back, and he perched on the end of the bed, stroking the back of her head. “I’ve got to go out. Ani is on her way. She’ll stay with you tonight.”

His wife turned to face him. “At this hour, seriously?” The annoyance on her pale face and bloodshot eyes spooked him.

Walker sighed. Christine knew his job came before lots of things. “I’ll see you for dinner.” He kissed his wife gently on the forehead.

Christine didn’t respond. She turned her head away from him. Concern filled him, as he gave her one last look before hurrying to the door. He had no way of knowing if he would be home for dinner today, or next week.

  • What would say has been your biggest challenge and achievement in writing TSK?

The biggest challenge for me is and might always be I’m a born script writer, it’s the style I much prefer, writing prose is hard for me, and takes me a good amount of effort. I do think with my writing and editing regime that it is the best I can do though and I’m proud to put these books out there.

  • What have you learned about yourself as a writer through writing The Secret King?

That not everyone will love your work, same as with writing scripts, there will always be a difference of opinion. But I do like to think I can take on board those opinions and learn and keep trying.

  • Do you have any advice for other aspiring authors?

Just practice every day, join crit groups, make friends and grow together. The more you do for others the more you get back, don’t be selfish. Don’t expect people to read your work without helping them back in some way, supporting this community is very important. 

  • Anything else you would like to say?

Please click the link and download book 1 for free, from 12/12/16 to the 15/12/16 and if you’re an audiobook fan, the whispersync deal will be 2.99! bargain. I love Greg Tremblay’s voice, and for the first person to ever speak our conlang (beside its creator) sounds just perfect!


  • And finally, do you have any future works planned?

Of course, the release of book 2 – December 20th.

We’re also working on two more audio shorts from Doctor Brie and Lieutenant Hadi’s story line. Narrated by Holly Adams and Greg TremblayJ
And a fully illustrated anthology, with illustrations by the very talented Andrew Dodd.
And also 50k novella from one of our TV episodes, penned by my co-writer, Steven Kogan!

I’m totally excited for next year! We’ve so much more planned and ready to launch, you have to follow us though to keep up.

Please click the links below for regular news and updates.

Sites: Production Website & Main TSK Website
Twitter: Production & TSK
Facebook: TSK Productions Ltd & The Secret King Fan Page




Author Interview: Lindsey Williams

Posted October 29, 2015

self portraitLindsey Williams is a sci-fi, horror and fantasy writer living in sunny Florida. When she’s not writing, she’s been known to engage in numerous forms of self-torture such as participating in philosophical debates or translating things into ancient Egyptian.Some of her other hobbies include researching and/or analyzing pretty much everything to death, conducting culinary experiments, and listening to really loud heavy metal while relaxing in her pool.


  • When did you first discover your love for writing?

I have always just… been a writer. Since I was a young girl, I wrote. Poems, journaling, letters, short stories, anything. I was actually that kid in school who would get excited when we had to do an essay. I’ve always found it easier to express myself through writing. It’s who I am. The rest of my family was always physically artistic- music, painting, crafty or handy things. I was horrible with all that, because writing is my medium.


  • Do you have a favourite place to write?

Well, I live in Florida so it’s nice most of the year. My ‘office’ is usually my back porch. I love it. It’s a screened in pool deck where we house our orchid collection. Very peaceful. Unless the neighbor is mowing the lawn or something…


  • Do you have a writing routine or process that you adhere to?

Hmm. Yes, of a sort. I have a list of ideas that I refer to, with little blurbs about the general concept. I expand upon these, one by one, into a more detailed outline. Then I work off the outline, but basically just wing it. It’s a nice compromise between organization and chaos that works for me. I need a bit of both.


  • Are there any authors or specific books you aspire to?

Stephen King, Laurell K. Hamilton (though I enjoyed her books more before they became mostly focused on the ‘romantic’ aspects of the stories, shall we say), Douglas Adams, Mary Shelley, Christopher Moore, Hunter S. Thompson, Neil Gaiman. I have and will always be –and want to be- a proud weirdo. I can only hope to one day be as weird (and awesome) as these guys.


  • What inspired you to write Motherhood?

Well, there were a few different inspirations for Motherhood, but as with most of my stories, it started out as an idea from a dream I had. You would laugh really, if you saw what I had initially written- it was just this one scribbled, barely discernible little line ‘something about aliensMotherhood cover-page and being trapped’. I happened to decide to filter this through the lens of my own rather horrifying custody experience, which led me to the basic concept. It’s kind of crazy how I come up with my concepts, because I don’t really, they just happen, like a lightning bolt. If only the actual writing part was that easy…

But once I got started I realized I wanted to explore the darker possibilities of being a mother, the helplessness of parenthood and the despair of separation. It snowballed.

Our society is so focused on the ‘positive’, the ‘yang’, the outer world and there is this huge stigma against women having negative or even strong emotions and we’re certainly not allowed to be ambivalent about children. How far can I stretch that limit?

We’re supposed to be pure, perfect, well behaved. What if we were allowed to be whole people, and have our own darkness? What does that look like? What happens to a woman who deals with it? What’s the worst case scenario?

And there were some other social issues that I wanted to touch upon as well, while still offering an entertaining and hopefully thought-provoking story. So I hope that comes through to readers. There is a good bit of nuance to it.


  • Can you tell us a little about your book?

Without giving away too much, Jess wakes up to discover she’s been abducted by aliens. Then she is forcibly inseminated and carries the child to term. She doesn’t ever expect to love the child at all, but for some reason she is able to to partake in the alien’s telepathy and so she is ultimately unable to avoid a growing connection with her son during her captivity. It’s the only relationship she has access to so she comes to depend on it. Unfortunately, this causes her even more heartache in the end. You’ll have to read it to find out the rest of what happens!


  • Do you have a favourite amongst all your characters?

Well, the star of the show is obviously Jess, who is very much an anti-heroine. She really goes through a lot and as I was writing, she took on a personality of her own. It’s a pretty character driven book, focused on her experience.


  • Does your book contain a message for readers to consider?

Oh, several. But I will leave it to the reader to decide what exactly the messages are.


  • What would say has been your biggest challenge and achievement in writing Motherhood?

Probably getting past my own fear, finishing it, and putting it out there. I know Motherhood won’t be for everyone (and isn’t this all just one big popularity contest?) but my hope is that it will inspire people to think about the way we view certain stigmas and taboos, the way we treat things we don’t understand. I would consider it quite an achievement if Motherhood can in any way help even one person confront their own fears and limitations, question the status quo or why things are the way they are.


  • What have you learned about yourself as a writer through writing Motherhood?

Writing Motherhood was an experience that solidified something that I’ve always known, in the back of my mind. I am a writer. I have somehow avoided this realization for over a decade of trying to do other things and figure out what I wanted to do with my life.  About halfway through the book it just clicked into place and I literally had a moment where I was like ‘Ohhh, ok. Yes, HERE it is, here’s what I’m supposed to be doing…” and I finally realized that for me, doing anything else is a waste of my time.


  • Do you have any advice for other aspiring authors?

Just keep writing! Keep going, don’t get discouraged. This is a tough business, and it’s a challenge to not let things get to you. But the rewards are worth it. Connecting with people, offering ideas and creating lives, exploring pain and beauty, love and fear, emotion, vulnerability, sharing a part of yourself- it’s truly unlike doing anything else. It’s exhilarating and amazing and terrifying all at the same time.

One of my favourite pieces of advice comes from Jaxon Wolfe (on Twitter of all places): “If you don’t write the classics of the future, then who will?”

My second favourite piece of advice is something Brian Rathbone said: “Sometimes writing involves taking a nap”.


  • Anything else you would like to say?

Stay tuned! I’m just getting started. Also, the print version of Motherhood is coming soon.


  • And finally, do you have any future works planned?

Tons! As I said, I’ve got a running list of ideas. There is MUCH more to come, for sure. I’m currently working on two stories, Dragonfae – a medieval style fantasy and Astralis – a futuristic action sci-fi.







Motherhood by Lindsey Williams

Posted October 29, 2015

Waking one day to find herself trapped in an impossible nightmare, exceedingly average anti-heroine Jess Richards struggles to stay sane in a hellish new chapter of her life – Motherhood.

Just when it seems like things can’t get any worse, a perilous proposition blows up in her face, changing the course of her whole life and sending her deeper into a series of tragic and macabre events.

[goodreviews isbn=”B00ZGUBDZA” buyinfo=”off” bookinfo=”off”]

AL CLARK by Jonathan G. Meyer

Posted August 31, 2015

A thousand specially selected people leave a troubled Earth for a new start on a virgin world many years away. Their starship is state-of-the-art and entirely automatic; its passengers safely sleeping through the long journey. All possible scenarios have been taken into account except one. There is no way to predict sabotage.

Al Clark wakes to begin a new life, alone on a crippled starship with no memory of what transpired to place him there.

It is the beginning of a quest that will take him places he could not have imagined, manage feats he would not have thought possible, and teach him the true meaning of friendship.

Buy on Amazon

Blogging A-Z: L is for… Life

Posted April 17, 2015


Or more specifically, Life on other planets.

I do not, for one moment, believe we are ‘alone’ in this universe. Life came into being on our own planet, albeit with a specific set of criteria, but just because we haven’t found proof of other lifeforms, it doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist… somewhere.

Alien Life Forms

Science fiction is rich with other life forms, and a quick search through Google images reveals just how wide and vast our imagination is when considering other forms of life – little green and grey men with small bodies and elongated or over-sized heads, human shaped aliens, insects, robots, a jelly-like blob… As with the other elements of science fiction I have so far discussed through this challenge, our vision of what constitutes an alien has changed as our own science and knowledge develops.

 Books on Indiescififantasy featuring alien life forms:

 [show-reviews-in tax=”genre” name=”aliens”]