(Ed says) For me one of the best things about editing IEBR is that I’ve discovered work I would never otherwise have known about. And the foremost of these is the writing of Stuart Ayris. I can’t believe I would have gone through life never knowing his work. It’s as incomprehensible to me as never reading Bronte, D.H. Lawrence or George Orwell. Ayris isn’t ‘like’ these authors but his influence on my life as reader is every bit as profound. So I want to introduce you to him and asked him to tell us a bit about himself. ( The picture isn’t him – but I wasn’t sure if he’d be happy for me to put his picture up on IEBR and I LOVE this picture from Tollesbury Time Forever)
Stuart says: Of the few things I remember about school, writing is prominent. I got a Grade A O level in English Language and a C in French Literature. Other than that – rubbish. My passion for reading then took over and I didn’t start writing until I was about twenty-two. It was then that I wrote my first novel – A Cleansing of Souls. So I would say it was reading that re-kindled my interest in writing.
I have written two novels – A Cleansing of Souls,and Tollesbury Time Forever and will be releasing my third, The Bird That Nobody Sees, on 30th July 2012. Looking at them, there are certain themes that link them – trying to understand the world around us, a belief that each and every person is wonderful and the need for hope in these difficult times.
Almost twenty years went by between the writing of A Cleansing of Souls and Tollesbury Time Forever. I wrote A Cleansing of Souls during an extensive period of unemployment in Thatcher’s England almost as a measure of self-preservation. I needed to understand how I had ended up in the position I had, what had happened to my dreams, my hopes.
During the following twenty year period I qualified as a psychiatric nurse, got married, had wonderful children, got divorced, drank too much, moved house five times and got re-married. I wrote Tollesbury Time Forever to try and work out how I had come to believe in those ideas and notions that I hold so passionately in terms of the way people should be treated. Being fully aware that my views on mental illness are contrary to those of many people in the mental health establishment I felt it really was time to look deeply at the development of my belief systems. So again, in a sense, Tollesbury Time Forever was written as a means of self-preservation. And it was the phenomenal response to Tollesbury Time Forever that led me on to writing The Bird That Nobody Sees. Wonderful!
Being something of a recalcitrant and a believer in the basic human right of expression, Indie publishing has been a wonderful advent for me. Of course I sent Tollesbury Time Forever off and got the usual rejections. It’s not your normal book, I understand that, and it won’t make anybody any money, but not to get any reply at all from most agents/publishers? That’s just rude! I forgive everybody everything but I’m not one for giving up so when I heard about the Amazon KDP facility, I jumped up and down and dived straight in. And I’ll keep on keeping on from now on in!
The people I have encountered over the last few months during which I have published my books have been some of the most wonderful people imaginable – friendly, supportive, funny, passionate and genuine. Now that’s a community I want to be a part of. You can keep your celebrity ghost-written nonsense and your pseudo-erotic shades of shades. I intend to keep writing in order to give people hope. For surely that is beholden upon all of us in these harsh times. We’re here to help others appreciate the beauty of this life. Simple as that. Now where’s my wine?
And buy the books from Amazon:
And check out yesterday’s review of A Cleansing of Souls if you missed it.