Interview with Dave Michael

What inspired you to write the novel?
You may be shocked to know that the writing of this novel was a twelve year process. You are about to read the final draught of many, many draughts – I really did want to write a novel that the reader could not put down and hope you enjoy the epic story of Calach the Swordsman. The Celts once inhabited much of Europe long before the Roman Empire almost wiped them off the face of the earth. We know very little about them as they did not leave written records. These ancient people were an oral society; societies whose bards, seers and druids passed down their unique stories that would live in the hearts and minds of their people. The Celtic heroes were superhuman; larger than life, boastful and courageous, fearless and flawed and were often than not doomed to a dark fate.
This fascination with the Celts drove my desire to write a story about the Celtic prince they called Calach. The idea for the historical fiction, ‘Feather of Hawk–Rebellion,’ began with a road trip through the Scottish landscape along the Antonine and Hadrian’s Wall. I discovered an old Roman Fort in Peel Park, north of Glasgow. A cold winter day. A bleak scene of snowy mountain tops. The winds froze my hands and limbs to the bone as I looked out to northern Scotland. What where the Romans doing here? Why would these soldiers from Italy, used to hot climates, want to be here at all? I will remember that road trip for the rest of my days; a stay over in an old fiesta car van at the old Roman fort of Vindolanda. A strange mist enveloped the site. I tried to get to sleep. Suddenly, even though I was on a dirt track in the middle of nowhere, the road was full of ancient traffic of marching Legionaries and their neighing horses. The distinct clatter of their armour, as they paced to a steady beat, filled my ears. The whole road was vibrantly alive. I had to drive off and park somewhere quieter.

It was the written record of Tacitus, the Roman historian, who described Calach’s struggle in brief detail, that I gained my first insight into this epic episode of history. Before the final, decisive battle between Celt and Roman, Tacitus notes that there was, ‘a man of outstanding valour and nobility named Calgacus; (Calach’s Roman name) who addressed the close packed multitude of men clamouring for battle.’ According to Tacitus, Calach achieved the following;

• He united the Caledonian tribes of ancient Scotland against the Roman invaders.
• He almost destroyed the Roman Ninth Legion in their fort of Eborecum. ( York - England )
• A great battle took place between Calach’s United Celtic Army and the Legions of Rome.

Calach is a true historical character yet most of the novel’s story is drawn from imagination.Why did Calach rebel? It must have been something terrible, something evil, perpetrated against him, which drove on his desire to destroy the hated invaders. I wanted to portray Calach as the Spartacus of ancient Britain. I penned him as a fearless and highly skilled sword warrior, who inspired a nation not yet born to rise. I wanted to make the chapters as vivid and gripping as possible and, where I could, lace the story with earthy humor. The novel has a strong love interest, a whole host of colourful characters, a few bloody battle scenes as well as a shadowy traitor who stalks Calach until the end. The theme of the story is revenge and how revenge and hatred poisons our humanity. Slowly, Calach begins to realize that he has become the monster that he is fighting, but is it too late for him to reverse his burning hatred and find some sort of salvation? Please read on and I hope you enjoy this novel as much as I enjoyed writing it.

Dave Michael - Author of ‘Feather of Hawk Rebellion.’ February 2018
Published 2018-04-03.
Smashwords Interviews are created by the profiled author, publisher or reader.

Books by This Author

Feather of Hawk
Price: Free! Words: 43,090. Language: English. Published: March 31, 2018. Categories: Fiction » Historical » Ancient, Fiction » Historical » Ancient
Caledonia. Ancient Scotland. A land ravaged by Roman invaders. One man would defy the might of the Empire. His name was Calach the Swordsman. Video Link VIDEO https://bit.ly/2HXM9bG