1066 and all that

I’m off to Hastings this weekend (on Sunday, October 10, 2021) to watch a re-enactment of the famous battle of 1066. English Heritage puts on a fantastic show at this time every year but, every five years, they do a big one and this year is it: the 955th anniversary of the famous – uh-oh, spoiler alert! – defeat of Harold of Wessex by William of Normandy. About 500 re-enactors are going to dress up as Normans and Saxons and beat each other up on the actual battlefield! I’m told there are always casualties (cuts ‘n’ bruises – usually no worse) so it’s not for milksops.

I’m looking forward to the battle but, equally interesting, I think, is the living encampment on top of the hill, where the re-enactors camp out for a few days, living as Normand/Saxons in tents, cooking and eating authentic food and demonstrating the skills of the period: falconry, blacksmithing, archery, and so on. I pretend to myself that I’m doing research for my next book – the technology is not that different to the period (8th century) in which I set my Fire Born Viking novels – but, actually, I know most of this stuff already having been researching and writing medieval novels for a couple of decades now. However, I know it will be a fun day out – and the weather report looks pretty good. If you want to book tickets, this is the link, and I hope perhaps to even see some of my readers there!

I thought, while I have your attention, that I would do a quick update on my writing progress, to keep you all in the loop. As you know, The Last Berserker (Fire Born 1), is loose in the wild, and selling pretty well, I think. I have completed (including the edits) The Saxon Wolf (Fire Born 2 – below) and that will be out in mid-January 2022. You can pre-order that here. And, at the moment I am beavering away on Fire Born 3 – working title Loki’s Blade – which I aim to have finished by early in the new year, and which will be published in the autumn of 2022. After that I don’t know what I will be writing next. Possibly more Fire Born, if I think there is the appetite for more Bjarki and Tor adventures. Possibly something else. If there is some period you want me to explore (not more Robin Hoods, I need a break from those for a bit) do let me know. And feel free to ask me anything you like via the Comments below.

Anyway that’s where I am now work-wise. But this weekend should be all about fun – at Hastings! Maybe I’ll see some of you there!

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