Born in Yorkshire, Oxford graduate Philip Brian Hall is a former diplomat, teacher, examiner and web designer. He has also stood for parliament, sung solos in amateur operettas, rowed at Henley and ridden in over one hundred steeplechases.
Philip's work has appeared in several anthologies, including 'All Hail Our Robot Conquerors' (Zombies Need Brains) and 'Chilling Ghost Short Stories' (Flame Tree). On Line publications include Cosmic Roots & Eldritch Shores and AE The Canadian Science Fiction Review. His novel, ‘The Prophets of Baal’ is available as an e-book and in paperback.
He lives on a very small farm in Scotland with his wife, a dog, a cat and some horses.
When did you first start writing?
I began my first novel before leaving high school and completed it at university. That was my introduction to the frustrating experience of slush piles. I had enough confidence in my work to believe that if only someone would read it they would like it. The problem was that no agent ever would read it and publishers would not look at the work of writers who did not have agents.
For a long time serious writing had to be put on hold whilst I pursued sporting interests. It was not until I was side-lined by a bad horse racing fall that I started writing again and produced the novel that was to become 'The Prophets of Baal'.
Where did you grow up, and how did this influence your writing?
I was born in Yorkshire, England, where a dialect is spoken that is not always easy for outsiders to understand. The place does however instil a sense of identity and community. The rugged countryside of Yorkshire has remarkable beauty but also a harshness that contributes to the independence of mind and straight-talking nature of its people.
Fortunately for my writing career, I was able to win a scholarship to Oxford University, where they speak English. They also inspired me with a lifelong love of learning. I am one of those odd people who find almost every aspect of knowledge interesting.
I think you will find a legacy of both Yorkshire and Oxford in my work. The Yorkshireman pulls no punches and the Oxford man has the job of directing the creative energy and illuminating the literary landscape.
Young PI Toby cannot believe his luck. Two beautiful women compete for his affections. But when he falls for the younger one, he is enmeshed in an ancient struggle between occult powers. If the girl is to be saved from death, he faces not just a steep learning curve in witchcraft but a battle for supremacy. And unknown to Toby, both sides have picked him to play a leading role in the fight!