Interview with Ian Thompson

Do you remember the first story you ever wrote?
It was a Fighting Fantasy game ("To Go North, turn to 281...").
I was very new to writing, but it was a decent effort and got a nice letter back from the publisher, pointing out improvements I could make to my work.
I then switched to writing scifi/action/horror as my second work.
How do you approach cover design?
For me, the cover has to come from the story, so that you eventually experience something in the book you think "that's were the cover came from". Maybe not an image from the book, perhaps something less direct - my first cover (Paradise Exhumed) is a mix of the hero's thought processes and the plot itself.
What do you read for pleasure?
I really enjoy Stephen King novels, and mostly o the characters, which are so rich, alive and engrossing.
I like a lot of old "pulp" stories for the action, adventure and great storylines: the likes of Robert E. Howard and Edgar Rice Burroughs in fantasy; Mickey Spillane and Raymond Chandler in detective stories.
I read Sherlock Holmes too, as I find the adventures wonderful. The original tales are obviously the best, but there are some excellent pastiches too.
What is your e-reading device of choice?
A battered old generic ebook reader. Its clunky and not terribly fast, but I love it. I've even repaired it recently - soldering in a new rechargeable battery. I don't like to just throw away things I like to get the latest one.
Describe your desk
Always cluttered! A PC screen directly in front of me. Books off to the left, beyond my printer/scanner. Fantasy models on shelves to the back right. There are snack-foods, fruit, notes, pens, diaries and painkillers scattered about. It need a good sort out, but I'd rather be writing.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
Although I grew up in Cheshire, UK, physically, I really grew up in my imagination. I read a lot and watched a lot of exciting TV - I spent a lot of my time feeding my imagination. So many things had influence - a few are... the old Dr Who's (especially Pertwee & Baker), Star Treks, Hammer movies, other Sci-Fi and fantasy shows, films and books, blockbuster movies (I loved the pace, excitement and action of stuff like the original Total Recall, for instance) and things such as manga.
When did you first start writing?
In Primary school, in breaks to ease the boredom (and because I knew I'd be a bestselling author by the time I was 15, which at least shows I had a good imagination!).
What's the story behind your latest book?
Cause and effect. Events happen two thousand years ago, during the Roman occupation, that have terrible repercussions in modern day Britain. It's two related stories entwined together. The Roman narrative is kin to an Edgar Allan Poe tale, with a determined and dangerous protagonist. The twenty-first century tale is a desperate chase and features a rather unique and terrible creature.
What motivated you to become an indie author?
The sense that the writing industry is getting worse and worse for new authors following the "old route". Also, I've had experience with submitting to agents which suggests that some (not all) agents' approaches to examining book-samples are very subjective. I think Agents should be representing the final potential readers, not their own whims.

Indie authors write directly for the reader. That really appeals to me.
How has Smashwords contributed to your success?
I've only been a member for a few weeks, but I've seen a lot of new interest develop. And it's great to be able to see how many samples of your work have been downloaded and how many people have viewed your site-pages.
I need to nurture this interest into growing sales.
What is the greatest joy of writing for you?
Reading something I wrote some time ago and thinking "damn, that was good". At those times you are reading like a reader rather than a writer/editor, and you can appreciate the work in a different light.
What are you working on next?
I'll be polishing the manuscript for the second, concluding volume of Era Of Darkness.
Who are your favorite authors?
Stephen King overall. I don't get scared by him at all - rather I love his characters, the worlds he creates and the richness of his storytelling. Funnily, I often feel sad finishing one of his books, as I'd always love some more.
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
Often painkillers - I suffer from arthritis and can stiffen up at night.
After that, it's "progress" - that I know I'll do something, whether big or small, with my writing. Each day is another step forwards.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Reading. Playing PC games. Watching TV. Building and painting model kits (usually Star Trek related - I'm working on the original Bridge right now)... And scribbling notes of new ideas for new stories.
Published 2015-05-16.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Short Horror Tales - Omnibus 4
Series: Short Horror Tales - Book Bundles, Book 4. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 53,170. Language: British English. Published: September 10, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural, Fiction » Horror » Ghost
In the 4th super-saving Short Horror Tales omnibus… Frozen suicides, gunshot victims and shredded corpses herald the arrival of The Little Men. A mother and her baby face the harrowing onslaught of ravenous, inhuman Cold Callers. And the passengers of a bus find themselves caught in a storm of deadly Acid Rain.
Kill The President, Slowly
Series: Short Horror Tales, Book 13. Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 17,790. Language: British English. Published: July 9, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Horror » Crime, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
Adam Farrisher, President of Avernus Studios, has created a new TV show – and people are dying to watch it. Over a hundred have perished so far. The assassin Mr Slowly is given a new mission: to stop Farrisher and his TV show dead. To succeed, he will have to overcome a sinister mystery, prowling flesh-eating horrors, a debilitating sickness … and his own worst nightmares.
Acid Rain
Series: Short Horror Tales, Book 12. Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 20,570. Language: British English. Published: March 24, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
After a weekend stopover in the big city, the passengers of a double-decker bus encounter a truly hellish storm… This rain is raw, searing acid. Just a drop on human skin is enough to inflict an agonizing burn – anyone caught in the downpour suffers horrendously. Chaos consumes the streets as victims go wild from excruciating pain. Vehicles collide in the panic and the bloodshed escalates…
Hector Reborn: Complete Book Bundle
Series: Hector Reborn. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 193,290. Language: British English. Published: January 30, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Dark, Fiction » Fantasy » Epic
The entire Hector Reborn saga in a great value Bundle! Reborn on a new world, Hector encounters new races, gods and magic. He grows aware of malevolent evils inflicted upon people - and swears to put them to an end. But what is really happening? Who can he trust? What fate awaits a hero who has already died?
Cold Callers
Series: Short Horror Tales, Book 11. Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 15,930. Language: British English. Published: January 23, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
How far will a mother go to protect her infant child? Marcie and her baby are alone in the creepy old house they call home. A frantic knocking on the front door heralds the arrival of the Cold Callers – and a night of harrowing terror begins for the mother and her child. The house is under siege by creatures than are neither human nor animal... Creatures with horrific intent...
Hector Reborn - Volume II: Retribution
Series: Hector Reborn. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 100,240. Language: British English. Published: January 16, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Fantasy » Dark
Reborn on an extraordinary new world, the Trojan Prince Hector was deceived into making a terrible error - and countless innocent Atlans have been condemned to a fate far crueller than death. Now he fights alongside the Atlan survivors against terrible odds: the Nemalites, their Shaltine warriors, the monstrous Viron gods... and, worst of all, his resurrected Greek nemesis Achilles.
Zombie Horde
Series: The Earth Bleeds: Short Tales ยท Short Horror Tales. Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 26,350. Language: British English. Published: December 18, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Horror » Undead, Fiction » Science fiction » Apocalyptic
Four years ago, the Earth began to bleed – and a zombie plague infested our world... Ed, once a writer and a drunk, is now a veteran of the apocalypse. With his tough-as-nails friend Marie, he joins a supply run into hostile territory. When disaster strikes, the group find themselves on foot, far from any safe haven... and hunted by a gigantic, flesh-hungry horde of the undead.
Era Of Darkness: Complete Book Bundle
Series: The Era Of Darkness Saga. Price: $4.99 USD. Words: 260,870. Language: British English. Published: July 30, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Fantasy » Dark
As hordes of demon invaders slaughter their way across Emeran, frantic attempts are made to stop them. Princesses Lar and Pec defend the Human race. In the Callis lands, the coward Corfel seeks redemption. The traveller Cu’si’war urges the pacifist Graex to fight. The Death, a vengeful Vere, hunts mercilessly... Can heroism, desperation and self-sacrifice be enough to prevent the Era Of Darkness?
Hector Reborn - Volume I: Death & Life
Series: Hector Reborn. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 96,160. Language: British English. Published: July 20, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Fantasy » Dark
Prince Hector, the greatest defending warrior in the Trojan War, is slain by his nemesis Achilles... Reborn on a new world, Hector encounters new races, gods and magic. He grows aware of malevolent evils - and swears to put them to an end. But what is really happening? Who can he trust? What will be the consequences of his actions? And what fate awaits a hero who has already died?
The Little Men
Series: Short Horror Tales, Book 10. Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 20,000. Language: British English. Published: June 30, 2017. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
Frozen suicides, gunshot victims and shredded corpses. What the hell is going on in Shilsville? Two men investigate: Dave Renfield, a Native American detective, and Nick Guggenheim, a retired old cop. What begins as a series of baffling deaths evolves into a battle against a horror the police can barely believe in. The Little Men have been unleashed and their sole purpose is to slaughter...
Short Horror Tales - Book Bundle 3
Series: Short Horror Tales - Book Bundles, Book 3. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 41,120. Language: British English. Published: November 28, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
The third super-saving Short Horror Bundle. Three more dark, terrifying tales...A deadly hit man encounters a supernatural horror and its evil brood... Investigators in an abandoned village face the molten wrath of a murderous ghostly apparition... A creature living inside the internet seeks to feast on misery, pain – and human flesh.
Troll
Series: Short Horror Tales, Book 9. Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 15,040. Language: British English. Published: October 21, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
A friend in need... An urgent message sends Steve rushing to the home of his old friend Tom Howard. He expects to find Tom relapsed into drug addiction, but instead finds him living in his basement, almost starved and totally fixated upon the internet. Tom tells a story so incredible that Steve doubts his sanity... The Troll is coming, to feast on misery, pain... and human flesh.
The Burning Rider
Series: Short Horror Tales, Book 8. Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 15,820. Language: British English. Published: August 31, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
Is the Burning Rider a myth or a deadly supernatural slayer? When a small team investigates an abandoned village at night, their task begins with grisly discoveries and evolves into nightmarish horror. Soon the survivors are trying desperately to escape the molten wrath of The Burning Rider...
Short Horror Tales - Book Bundle 2
Series: Short Horror Tales - Book Bundles, Book 2. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 48,470. Language: British English. Published: July 10, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
Super-saving Short Horror Bundle. Three more bloody, chilling tales... During a nightshift from hell, discover what caused the slaughter and blazing inferno at Gideon’s Warehouse... The worst monsters are often human. Is Luke suffering from madness, repressed memories or something worse? ...They thought a virus had escaped at the research facility – but what had broken free was even more deadly.
Short Horror Tales - Book Bundle 1
Series: Short Horror Tales - Book Bundles, Book 1. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 35,780. Language: British English. Published: July 10, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
Super-saving Short Horror Bundle. Three bloody, chilling tales... A car accident in a hellish storm leads to a monstrous fight for survival... A gorgeous hooker with a hideous secret might mean a fate worse than death... A crime scene contains forty-two human skeletons and one survivor – who has a desperate, baffling request... Plus bonus tale & more!
Kill Him, Slowly
Series: Short Horror Tales, Book 7. Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 12,720. Language: British English. Published: June 22, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Horror » Undead, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
Mr Slowly is a deadly hit man who has never failed to kill a target. But this time, the assassin may have met his match. The new target isn’t human – he’s a supernatural horror, surrounded by an evil brood... and bullets aren’t going to stop him. Is this Mr Slowly’s final assignment?
Bug Hunt
Series: Short Horror Tales, Book 6. Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 20,000. Language: British English. Published: May 19, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
Something is terribly wrong at an underground bio-weapons facility. Have research teams gone insane? Has some awful virus escaped? Or is the cause even more disturbing..? A team of elite mercenaries descend to investigate. Their mission soon becomes a raging battle for survival against an outnumbering, nightmarish force... Things spawned by nature, then made even more lethal by science.
Era Of Darkness: Volume II: Extinction
Series: The Era Of Darkness Saga. Price: $3.99 USD. Words: 137,310. Language: British English. Published: March 30, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Fantasy » Dark
The War of Emeran reaches a devastating conclusion. Hundreds of thousands of demons and abominations besiege Queen Lar’s city of Tremok – and the defences finally crumble. Far to the north, Pec’s desperate mission takes a terrible twist. Other nations must decide whether to unite or fall. Hopes dwindle and extinction looms. Can anything stop the relentless, seemingly infinite demon hordes..?
House Of My Dreams
Series: Short Horror Tales, Book 5. Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 15,450. Language: British English. Published: March 3, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
Sometimes the worst monsters are human. Luke remembers nothing from the first ten years of his life – but whatever happened causes him hideous nightmares. Was something done to him... or did he do something terrible? Dr Maybury can cure Luke, but at what cost? And what does Luke’s newest, most awful nightmare mean?
Ignition Source
Series: Short Horror Tales, Book 4. Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 16,530. Language: British English. Published: January 27, 2016. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
Late at night, at a huge warehouse, a disabled security guard expects another boring, routine shift of work. He is utterly unprepared for the horror and terror he will have to endure. First there are intruders, then a raging fire, horrific murders... and a monstrous secret that is both alive and utterly lethal. In the face of a challenge which makes him doubt his sanity, can he survive..?
Chained
Series: Short Horror Tales, Book 3. Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 5,790. Language: British English. Published: December 16, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
A derelict building. The police find forty-two human skeletons... and one man chained to a wall. He is barely alive. He looks helpless, starved and possibly tortured. What happened to him? What did he witness? What is responsible for all the horrors of this house? And what is the reason for the victim’s strange, desperate request?
Hooker
Series: Short Horror Tales, Book 2. Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 13,810. Language: British English. Published: November 28, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
Beauty can be only skin deep. Horror can go right through to the bone... Nigel Fawson loses his job and his family, so he sets out to get drunk in a seedy bar. Soon Fawson is comforted by a beautiful girl named Valerie. When he discovers that she is a prostitute, he decides to abandon caution and return to her apartment with her... And that's when his night turns from awful to utterly lethal.
Glancing Blow
Series: Short Horror Tales, Book 1. Price: $1.50 USD. Words: 11,220. Language: British English. Published: October 21, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
Late at night, a man drives through a hellish storm on a dark, secluded forest road. When a creature lunges out in front of his car, he strikes it a glancing blow... Resulting in a nerve-shredding drama of pursuit, violence and suffering as his unintentional victim seeks revenge. Can he survive this grotesque beast?
God Of War
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 150,850. Language: British English. Published: September 8, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
For 2000 years, a horror has waited – starving, hating & utterly insane... A group of cavers are trapped underground and hunted by an ancient behemoth. Led by Julie, a smart, strong-willed student, they flee desperately. Their reserves of strength, courage and hope dwindle. Only the will to survive remains... Can anyone escape this subterranean hell and the relentless wrath of the God Of War?
Into The Hole
Series: Short Horror Tales. Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 10,390. Language: English. Published: August 28, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Horror » General, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Supernatural
(5.00 from 1 review)
A dark, ancient family secret. Misery, deception and murder. What are the Ramine family hiding? What are they feeding? And could something ever break their sacred oath? This standalone story was taken from God Of War prior to that novel’s release. As a bonus, it also features the first two chapters from God Of War. Be sure to check out the terrifying full-length novel.
Survival I: Slaughter At Ghastar
Price: $1.75 USD. Words: 11,500. Language: British English. Published: August 6, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Fantasy » Dark
An all-new action-packed novella from the Era Of Darkness. A time of apocalypse. Epic battles. Gritty action. Dark magic. Impossible odds. Defeat & despair. At dawn, the demon forces reach the peaceful Human village of Ghastar – and an atrocious massacre ensues... A small group of refugees meet an old hermit and retreat to his cabin. Soon they are trapped and under siege... Can anyone survive?
The Fate Of Luminar: A Short Tale From The Era Of Darkness
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 11,620. Language: British English. Published: June 12, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Fantasy » Dark
The Fate Of Luminar is a tale from the Era Of Darkness, set in the Human village closest to the mysterious Wall of Light. What the villagers of Luminar experience is soon to befall an entire world... Amid the appalling chaos and slaughter, a man tries desperately to save his family. This is a standalone story taken from Era Of Darkness Vol I. It is the third & longest in the Short Tales series.
Paradise Exhumed (Ray Hammett Thrillers Book 1)
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 128,250. Language: British English. Published: May 31, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Mystery & detective » Amateur sleuth, Fiction » Thriller & suspense » Crime thriller
Two reporters. A relentless killer. A desperate race to stop the slaughter. A twisting whodunit that blends vibrant characters, investigation, lethal danger and thrilling action. Who murdered the infamous celebrity Gemini Hart? And why are they still killing? Does the motive lie with Hart's drugs-and-sex lifestyle, with dark secrets from her past or with something more sinister..?
Era Of Darkness: Volume I: The Apocalypse Begins
Series: The Era Of Darkness Saga. Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 126,390. Language: British English. Published: May 7, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Fantasy » Dark
As hordes of demon invaders slaughter their way across Emeran, frantic attempts are made to stop them. Princesses Lar and Pec defend the Human race. In the Callis lands, the coward Corfel seeks redemption. The traveller Cu’si’war urges the pacifist Graex to fight. The Death, a vengeful Vere, hunts mercilessly... Can heroism, desperation and self-sacrifice be enough to prevent the Era Of Darkness?
Out Of The Light: Two Short Tales From The Era Of Darkness
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 4,990. Language: British English. Published: May 5, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Fantasy » Dark
For half a millennia, the Wall of Light had stood. The huge barrier formed a gigantic prison around an unknown land and a forgotten race... Today, the Wall of Light falls – and the apocalypse begins. Out Of The Light features two short tales, set as the demonic invasion commences. One is a stand-alone tale from Era Of Darkness Vol I, the other is exclusive to this release.
Bloodfury & Fear: A Short Tale From The Era Of Darkness
Price: $0.99 USD. Words: 7,380. Language: British English. Published: May 5, 2015. Categories: Fiction » Fantasy » Epic, Fiction » Fantasy » Dark
(4.50 from 2 reviews)
A short tale from the Era Of Darkness, set just before the demonic invasion... When a small scouting camp encounters a fearsome intruder, a peaceful night erupts into bloody violence. Survival may come at a price that will change a man forever. Bloodfury & Fear is a standalone story taken from Era Of Darkness Vol I. This is the Extended Version, with two additional bonus chapters.