Born and raised in United Kingdom and living in the historic English market town of Newbury in Berkshire, England and author of 'BELL, BOOK & HANDBAG' and a collection of 30 short stories 'TOURIST TROUBLE'. Both soon to be available on SMASHWORDS. (http://ianashley.co.uk/books.html )
Ian is also the creator of the 'BIDDERMOUTH GAZETTE' a highly readable weekly blog about the life of the inhabitants of a small English seaside town. http://biddermouthgazette.ianashley.co.uk
What inspires you to get out of bed each day?
The day job! Like most writers these days there is a need to eat and keep a roof over my head - so working as an International Learning Development Manager for a global fashion brand makes sure the alarm goes off at 05.15 every weekeday morning.
When you're not writing, how do you spend your time?
Good question! Part of my job involves travel - all of that involves flying so I'm lucky to be able to combine the two as long as I have a drop-down table. Outside of writing I have still held on to my love of amateur theatre ( which was how I started writing - doing 500 word reviews for my local newspaper).
Sadly travel means I don't get the chance to perform anymore so in that respect my glory days are behind me and the trophies are gathering dust on the shelf in the study. Do I miss it? Yes I do. I miss the cameraderie but still manage to keep up with many of my old friends with many 'Do you remember when....' evenings.
Music, reading and films are a huge part of my life - Music ranges from classical to contemporary although I still don't get lines like 'sex up me ho' and all that crotch grabbing. I suppose as a writer I like songs with a story, a good song IS a short story, start middle and end - conflict either resolved or hearts broken - and like all writing a chance to connect your experience to that of the writer/ performer.
Growing up the radio was on in the house all day - so total immersion in the big early listening hits of the Sixties. Having older sisters has also given me a sound knowledge of everything from 1961 onwards.Am I stuck in the Sixties? Probably. Do I care? No. From my mother I've inherited a big love of French 'chanson' starting with Piaf and leading me in later life down some amazing musical by-ways. And that's something that fascinates me about music as an expanding cultural medium - Where do those influences come from? Where do they lead to?
Reading veers more towards biographies as I enjoy seeing how other people tick and I suppose we all have a natural tendency to imagine other people's lives are more interesting than our own.
When it comes to films - the older I've got the more I appreciate the craft of a well-photographed shot and the talent that lurks behind the camera not just in front. Again my big love are those European films of the 50's and 60's and I could watch Monic Vitti all day. .
After forty years Maureen Truscott's psychic powers are back and so is Jean Shanks and she's not happy!
Why has Jean returned from the dead and what's all this got to do with Doris Morris and her deadly ambition to be Britain's most famous clairvoyant?