Interview with Author Seumas Gallacher!

…m’Lady, Janice Spina on her terrific blog pages, has done this ol’ Jurassic proud today…

Source: Interview with Author Seumas Gallacher!

Seumas Gallacher
Seumas Gallacher

Please welcome, author/blogger extraordinaire, Seumas Gallacher. Hi Seumas! So nice to have you here on my blog segment, Interview an Author! I am excited to learn more you about and yours books. I must say that I thoroughly enjoy reading your posts. They give me a good chuckle. Let’s begin your interview, shall we?

  1. Please tell us something about yourself.

Self-confessed nutter, flirting constantly with the thin line between insanity and whatever else is available… latecomer to the incredible world of writing, and LUVVIN every minute of it… after a career covering five decades and three continents, immersed in Finance and Banking, then corporate trouble-shooting, I still haven’t decided what I wanna be when I grow up… so meantime, being an Author it is…

 2. When did you know that you wanted to be an author?

In real terms about seven years ago, when I felt urged to write ‘that book’ we all supposedly have in us, and every seven minutes since…

3. What process do you need in order to write?

A laptop that lights up when I switch it on… a brain box that hopefully does the same… and from sum’where… anywhere… the gift of imagination… that’s all…

4. Please share the theme of your books with us…

The Jack Calder series is populated with former British Special Forces officers (the SAS) who set up their own specialist security firm, looking after high-value shipments and personnel, and who are able to deploy their black ops experience in combatting international crime lords, drug barons, people traffickers, cash launderers…

5. How do you come up with ideas for your stories?

The 24/7 cable news channels are full of material… merely change the names to protect the guilty… add in a lifetime of living abroad in different countries and their cultures… remembered mental snapshots of personalities and cameos of incidents… mix well with the aforementioned imagination… and presto… stories…

6. What projects are you currently working on?

Current work-in-progress on the fifth in the series, DEADLY IMPASSE…

7. What do you expect to accomplish in 2015?

Primarily, keep on breathing, enjoy being alive, and continue scribbling…

8. What hobbies do you have when you are not writing?

Television couch potato when English Premier League football matches are showing live… singing for my own pleasure, as it’s certainly unlikely to enchant anyone else… and involvement on the SOSYAL NETWURKS, where great pals abound…

jjspina: That is how we met, Seumas! I remember the day……

9. What is your target audience for your book?

Emb’dy who likes crime thrillers, and with no false modesty, those who appreciate when an Author’s put a ton of thought into his/her wee masterpieces…

wallpaper 2

10. Please share your links and where to purchase your books.

Violin Man (Seumas)






Vengeance Wore Black (Seumas)






Savage Payback (Seumas)






Killer City (Seumas)






11. What advice would you give prospective authors?

Don’t be an aspiring author… if you write at all, you are an author

Don’t spam

Don’t ever, ever give up

Don’t write for emb’dy else except yerself

12. Is there anything else you would like to share?

 Yes… wanna say thanks to you, Janice for allowing this ol’ tramp to invade these pages… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ

Thank you, Seumas, for coming today and sharing your work with my readers and me. It was a sincere pleasure, me lad!

Thank you, readers, for stopping by to read about this fascinating and funny man. I read Seumas’ book, Savage Payback, recently and enjoyed it thoroughly.  Here is my review on Amazon and Goodreads. Please check out this creative author’s books on links above.

Action and Adventure Abound in this Thriller! 5 Stars!!

by Janice Spina

Savage Payback is the third book in his thriller and the first book I read of the series. Even though I did not know the background of the characters I thoroughly enjoyed this book.

Savage Payback is chock full of suspense, action and thrills. Jack Calder is the main protagonist who runs his own specialty security firm, ISP. From page one the reader is drawn into a collection of jewelry heists that cause horrendous casualties. Jack is now up against three foes, a black ops explosive expert, a dangerous drug baron from Eastern Europe, and a major cocaine trafficker from South America. When Jack’s wife, Mai-Ling, gets seriously injured he begins to take this affront on as a vendetta and pursues these men with rage in his heart.

Savage Payback is an exciting book that I couldn’t put down. I look forward to more from this talented author.

Remember: Reading Gives You Wings to Fly!

Please be kind and leave a review for authors. We will l0ve you for it!





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…what price a child’s delight?…

…after reading a great piece on Facebook about a stage actor’s wonderfully positive reaction to a child making some noise in the audience during performance time, it took me back down memory lane… I recall, many years ago, taking my daughter to see Phantom of the Opera in London when she was only 6 years old…


…being from Manila in the Philippines, it was her first ever occasion to be in London, and certainly the first time ever to see a live theatre show… her amazement at the ‘live movie’ on stage mesmerised her… she bagan to shriek with delight and point to various characters as they performed, with audible comments about them, half in English, half in her native Tagalog… I was loving watching her delight,… then some people in front of us turned and gave us ‘the stare’ and ‘the tut-tut’ with attendant mutterings… my reaction was to smile at them and then start to join in with my daughter’s pointing and remarks… within a minute, other, different, audience members around us started to do the same, with great smiles and applause at what was going on onstage… the ‘narkers‘ walked out soon after, with marginally louder mutterings and looks that would kill, if they had  mattered… their exit elicited applause from our new-found allies… the performance was enhanced for all of us who remained, I’m sure, and no problems from the stage… my daughter was in such glee to join in the audience applause at the end when the cast were taking their bows, and called out, ‘can we stay and watch it again, Papa’… it was one of the most wonderful memories I have of my daughter… and would I do that again?… you bet your sweet whatsit I would!… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!



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…abnormal normality or normal abnormality?… whaddya expect?… I’m a Writer…

…the next person ever I meet who is ‘normal’ will prob’ly be the first one… it’s bit like the trite definition of a ‘normal nuclear family’ having 2.7 children and 1.6 dogs… what’s ‘normal’ about 0.7 of a child, or 0.6 of a dog?… I’ve a friend from ‘way back who, like myself as a young trainee idiot, regularly indulged more than a drop of the electric soup… unlike me, however, the liquid intake transformed him into a wannabe F1 race driver… I’d hazard a guess that such a mixture— one part loony, one part booze, and one part automobile, is still frowned upon as not conducive to ‘extended life expectancy’… he told me once, that the resultant high-speed prangs he frequently encountered had him mentally prepared for such accidents… and that when they happened, he would ‘normally’ throw himself to the floor of the car, curled into a foetal ball… thus hopefully alleviating some of the worst effects of the crashes…


…note his use of the WURD, ‘normally’… I informed him I’d ‘normally’ not ever get into a car with him again… y’see, Mabel, what constitutes median, standard, regular, accepted so-called ‘norms’ in life differ greatly from person to person, and circumstance to circumstance… I’m a Writer… and every Writer has her/his own ‘normal’ idiosyncratic thingy-s… for this ol’ Jurassic, it’s ‘normal’ to live for a week with approximately 4 1/4  hours aggregate total of sleep… it’s ‘normal’ to treat a conveyor belt supply of potato crisps and chocolate biscuits as sensible dietary fodder… it’s ’normal’ to have endless internal, cerebral discussions with imaginary characters as to what part they have to play in yer masterpieces… and, of course, it’s ‘normal’ to yield to the demands of these non-existent ‘persons’


…in any other walk of life, the observance of sumb’dy having multi-way conversations with fresh air would result in institutional incarceration and examination by a battery of medical experts with white coats and stethoscopes… if yeez’ll just excuse me now… I have to go fetch my fifteenth ‘normal’ Diet Coke of the day… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!



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…my great web pal, m’Lady, Barbara Laffin nails it!…

… my scant proficiency on Internet thing-ys does not stretch to an ability automatically to click sum’thing to reblog from Blogspot posts to this ‘ere WordPress page… ergo (fancy WURD for ‘therefore’, Mabel)… ergo, I have m’Lady, Barbara Laffin’s permission to cut and paste her piece from today on , which just knocks the socks off yeez… have a wee read and delight in the insight that  comes from having ’been there, done that, got the T-shirt, ate the sandwich’LUVZYA, Barbara!…


Our purpose OF life v Our purpose IN life

So…. today I have nothing better to do that sit in front of my laptop screen, churning out my thoughts.

The reason being, that I went to my doctor…. following my diagnoses of IBS with the drop in centre GP. After describing my symptoms, and noting that this has been going on for quite a few weeks….. this apparently ‘red flagged’ my condition. A very fast referral was made to the hospital, I had a further consultation, and this afternoon I go in for a colonoscopy. Oh the fecking joy of it all!! Some medication of atomic power, and no food for 24 hours….. liquids only. So for 4 hours (plus) last evening, I had to skip to the loo quite often. Did I say skip I could have beaten Usain Bolt on a couple of occasions!! And this morning I have to repeat the process of taking the overly sweet, syrupy shite again…. a whole bloody litre of it. To say it will be a challenge is an understatement! But one glass down…. another 3 to follow. Along with any other clear liquid to wash it all down….. and out.

Now the surprising thing, as that whilst I am concerned, I am not overly worried, or panicking. There is little point in that, until I know the facts. And to be brutally honest, I don’t think panic will set it then, even if the news ain’t great. I have coped with so much in my life, come through the other side, and I am no worse for it. In fact I think I am a much better person for it. I have had suicidal thoughts twice,(decades ago), and survived bacterial meningitis, with very little damage. ( though sure a few would disagree…. but I don’t blame the illness!) I have had a dreadful few years, with a broken heart and spirit, uncertainty and financial difficulties, due to my marriage breakup. But I am currently in a good place. If I can get through that…. then I will give everything else that gets thrown at me, a bloody good shot!!!

( ….. second glass of the evil concoction)

Anyway, all this means I have had a little ponder, as I do.

I recently lost an extremely good friend….. no, I didn’t mislay her,  t she passed away suddenly. A young soldier was stabbed to death in my local town – a shocking event. Another friend has been having self esteem issues, with anxiety attacks. Several other friends are struggling with life changes because their health, and a few have terminal diagnoses. These events made me think about my own mortality and life.

We all know that we are born, and then we die….. (and pay taxes in the middle). Not one of us knows what our lives will bring. We can anticipate, and dream, of how it could be. We can plan for that happy, and secure, future. Does it happen? You bet your sweet arse it doesn’t. Life throws so many side balls at you. Knocks you off the path, and you have to bloody well re-evaluate again….. and again….. and again!

All our plans and ideas are set in sand, and the goalposts are movable….. especially affected by events outside of our control. The realisation of this SHOULD be common knowledge…… Ha!! Is it fuck!!! If I had my way, I’d be financially comfortable (don’t need rich), my health would be great, I’d be living in my ideal home, with my adoring family. Doing the things that give me the most pleasure. And everyone would be my friend. There would be world peace, and no racism, homophobia, religious hatred etc., etc., etc….

(….. 10 metre sprint… again)

So what is the purpose OF life?? I haven’t got a fecking clue. I cannot offer even a glimmer of a suggestion. We are here….. whether it is through evolution or creation. Why do we need to be here? Why do we have this thing called nature?? I’ve not a fecking scooby…..

But we are here…. so we should make it count. We should enjoy what we have around us. Our world, and it’s population of Man and Mother Nature of course. But do we?? Nope!! We are our own custodians, and we are crap at it. So, in my simplistic view, we should all take control of our own lives first. Once again, I do NOT mean in a selfish way, but in a nurturing and kind way. If we can be happy in our own bodies….. and head….. then that will reflect.

So many bloody people think that the world owes them something. *They are bigots and extremists, with little other than SELFISH aims. We all need to protect what we have a passion for…. but with dignity, respect, understanding and tolerance. A person who makes a reasoned discussion, without name calling, shouting and ridiculing etc. But, unfortunately, we ALL do it!  (*See above). But acknowledging that we do, is the first step to realising the hurt and anger it can cause. Learn to apologise (and mean it), forgive (even if you cannot forget), be sorry (but not point in rolling in regret), be kind to yourself (if you aren’t, how can you expect others to be?), be aware that everyone is fighting a battle of some kind (it’s not just you!)…. the list is probably endless.

(…….. third and final glass…… )

We get so involved in our own battles, it is hard to realise that other people also have them. We often think that no-one understands how we feel. But there are people that do. The empathisers….. the people who have experienced/or experiencing  similar issues. They are the people who can support you through the worst of the difficult times. Don’t look for sympathy, as that only pushes you deeper into the problem.

So the purpose OF life? No bloody idea!!

The purpose IN life? To be the best you can be, in everything you think, say and do….. and remind ourselves that it is OK not to be perfect. If we don’t make mistakes, or push barriers….. how will we ever learn??

With that I really need to go and sit on the loo with this last glass….. my little, old legs are not up to sprinting anymore……

I leave you with a smiling shot of my bare behind….

Have a good day y’all

B xxxxx

… thanks, m’Lady, Barbara… made my week, that has… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!



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…Written Acts of Kindness Award… Author and Podcaster, K.J.Waters…


…friendship and generosity of spirit come in great swathes from the terrific global scribbling family… and no less so than from her self-described location in ‘Dirtville’ in the ol’  Yew Ess of Ay, my pal, Author and Podcastress, the remarkably photogenic, K.J Waters… step forward m’Lady, and receive today’s Written Acts of Kindness Award


…even her tweets and Facebook posts sparkle with her smile… a constant supporter to others online… oh, and by the way, she’s no slouch of an author either… check out STEALING TIME, her latest WURK, Lads and Lassies of Blog Land…



m’lady, K.J.,, the rules for passing this Award on are very simple:

  1. You are welcome to give it out as many times as you like, but it is only to be given to a maximum of one person per blog post. If you wish to give multiple rewards, please space the blog posts so the sincerity is maintained.
  2. Introduce the person; say how they encourage, help or inspire you; then link to their work and/or social media profiles. There may be a specific post you wish to link to which helped you. It’s up to you.
  3. Please publicise your award post to Twitter or Google Plus using the hashtag #writtenkindness so that others can find and follow the award winners.

This award is open to anyone to use. You don’t have to receive it, in order to be able to give it. Once you have received it, it isn’t obligatory that you must pass it on.

…see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!




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…Author pal, Emma Rose Millar, with a wee reminder of the penal code in 18th century England…

…another terrific book launch from the Crooked Cat Publishing stable a week ago features the splendid novel, Five Guns Blazing, co-authored by Emma Rose Millar and Kevin Allen… this post’ll put yeez in the mood… (and don’t even think about stealing a loaf of bread!)…

‘Oh don’t hang me, sir, I beg of you!’ The court seemed suddenly excited by her outburst. It was all entertainment to them; the law after all is only theatre; it did not matter much if one was hanged or not, it was all part of the drama. ‘I only did it for my daughter, who was sick and in need of medicine. My husband’s dead, sir, what is a woman to do?’ I felt a blush burning from my collarbone to my temples and someone laughed and shouted, ‘She is a liar, sir! The girl is the bastard child of two thieves!’ (Five Guns Blazing, Emma Rose Millar and Kevin Allen).



In early eighteenth century England there was no such thing as a petty crime. Records from the Old Bailey show that the death penalty could be handed down to anyone who dared to steal so much as a handkerchief. However, there was an increasing backlash against this bloody code, with many juries returning partial verdicts or reducing the offence to one of a less serious nature, thus allowing the judge to hand down a more lenient sentence.


These alternative punishments included things like pillory, the typical penalty for crimes like attempted sodomy, seditious words, extortion and fraud. The convicted criminal would be placed on a platform in the stews of London with his head and hands through holes in a wooden structure, where he would be pelted by the crowd with excrement, rotten fruit, eggs, animal guts and stones, sometimes causing death. If the charge was seditious words, crowds would sometimes cheer and throw flowers at the culprit. The practice wasn’t abolished until 1837 after constables increasingly formed a ring around the criminal in order to protect them.

emma 2

Branding was a typical punishment meted out to those found guilty of manslaughter of theft. Between 1699 and 1707, thieves were branded on the cheek. However, this made them unemployable and after 1707, the branding iron was applied to the thumb. This was done in front of an audience in the court room at the end of proceedings. It seems some criminals managed to bribe the executioner to apply a branding iron.

There were other punishments such as whippings, fines and imprisonment for other minor offences, but for some, the penalties were very harsh indeed:

Redemption was tossed around like a matchbox on the crashing Atlantic waves as the storm lashed against the ship, lifting its bow from the raging ocean while the captain fought to bring her under control. We slid from one end of the hold to the other. My mother’s skin where her collar chafed against her neck became bright and horrible in shades of purple and crimson and black as it peeled back and rubbed away, but while others screamed now at every movement of the ship, my mother stared icily into the gloom, as if she was no longer there at all. It was only then, as I imagined land fading into the distance, and the vast expanse of sea that it hit me: my old life was gone forever. (Five Guns Blazing)

Most surviving accounts of transported convicts focus on notorious criminals or scandalous circumstances.  However, the overwhelming majority of those transported to the colonies were ordinary men and women, convicted of petty offences.  After being handed down their sentences they promptly disappeared from the history books.

Conditions on board the ships were horrendous; many of the convicts died during the voyages of cholera and typhoid.  Those that survived were severely weakened by scurvy, dysentery and fever.  Convicts went on board shackled and in chains.  A hatch was opened and they went below deck, where they would spend the rest of the voyage.  Usually the chains were removed in the prison deck but sometimes not.  They were allowed on deck at intervals for fresh air and exercise.

If they survived the voyage, convicts were sold to plantation owners and worked alongside indentured servants and African slaves.  The status of convicts varied depending on the plantation; some were treated in line with indentured servants while others were subjected to the same forms of degradation as slaves, the big difference being that the convicts were only sold for the terms of their criminal sentences.

Anyone convicted of piracy or treason was likely to be hung. Performed in public, the gruesome display was meant to be a deterrent for all those who were tempted into a life of crime. However, for many, executions became a spectacle and created carnival-like excitement. Even the route from Newgate was lined with girls blowing kisses, crowds cheering or jeering and some throwing food or excrement.  Stall-holders sold refreshments and people hung out of their windows in order to get a look at the condemned men and women who were on their way to their deaths.

emma 3

The village of Tyburn, just outside London probably remains the place best known for the implementation of the death penalty in England. However, there were actually only eight hanging days every year. The time between executions allowed new stocks of condemned men and women to build up in gaol so that the events would become even more spectacular, involving a number criminals.

Once at Tyburn, the condemned criminals mounted another, wider cart and cords were passed around their necks, which were tied to the scaffold. The chaplain would pray with them and relatives were allowed to say farewell. Then the executioner would cover the prisoners’ faces and lash the horses so that the cart would be pulled away, leaving them to hang from the gallows. Often, friends and relatives would pull at their legs so that they would die quicker and not suffer.

After hanging, murderers’ bodies were sometimes covered with tallow and fatty substances, and dressed in a tarred shirt fastened down with iron bands. Their bodies were hung with chains to the gibbet, which was erected on, or as near as possible to the spot where the crime was committed. It was left there to rot, hence the expression to ‘hang in chains’.

Five Guns Blazing is an epic tale of piracy, slavery and treason, now available on Amazon:

…there now, Lads and Lassies of Blog Land… avast, and aaaagghhhrrr, landlubbers… spill yer doubloons and download a copy now… or else it’s off to Van Damien’s Land with yeez …

…thanks for sharing, m’Lady, Emma



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…my good friend, Wendy Janes, poses the question… are yeez closet proofreaders?…

…this’ll test a few of yeez, Lads and Lassies of Blog Land… try this wee quiz from my friend, Wendy Janes… (I, of course, in all modesty, got 107 % correct… what??…whaddya mean yeez can’t exceed 100%?…who sez?)

Do you have the makings of a good proofreader?

A light-hearted quiz by Wendy Janes

Thanks to Seumas for inviting me to write a guest post on his lovely blog. In keeping with his great sense of fun, I thought I’d take this opportunity to share a fun quiz.

Over the years I’ve been in touch with many proofreaders, and noticed a few common traits that we share, in addition to us all being avid readers. So, if you’re wondering whether you have the chops to join our ranks, how many of the following can you tick?:

  1. You loved school. A highlight of your school day was that moment when you’d completed a test and the teacher asked you to swap answers with your neighbour for marking. Oh, the anticipation of perfectly placed ticks and crosses.
  1. When you weren’t at school you enjoyed playing schools. Marking the work of your teddies and dolls could keep you occupied for hours.
  1. You are/were an English teacher, and as wonderful as those children are/were you long/ed for a bit of peace and quiet.
  1. When people speak to you, you correct their grammar in your head.
  1. You’re a picky person in the high street/shopping centre. All those misplaced apostrophes and misspelled words drive you potty.
  1. You read restaurant menus for typos. Once you’ve chosen your salmon in dill sauce accompanied by boiled potatoes and broccoli, rather than hand the menu back to the waiter, you’ll keep hold of it and entertain your fellow diners with the laugh-out-loud bloopers. A café in London provided my family with a full five minutes of giggles with its “Naked potatoes with choice of fillings”.
  1. You rarely read a book – traditionally published or self-published – without spotting one or two typos. The more famous the book, the more satisfying the find.
  1. You love quizzes and word puzzles. You watch all manner of quiz shows on television (my current favourite is Pointless) and regularly attend pub quizzes (my once a week habit is now down to once every three months). The day isn’t complete without a crossword.
  1. You have slight OCD tendencies. OCD is not a laughing matter and I do not wish to belittle anyone with this diagnosis, but at a different level, very mild OCD-type behaviours can indicate a strong preference for neatness and consistency that a good proofreader needs. My own mild tendencies include needing to eat an even number of biscuits at a sitting and using a particular mug for tea and a different one for coffee. I also have thing about “neat” numeric dates. For example, dates that are fully divisible by two, three, four or five cause me great joy, as do repeated numerals. I’d be genuinely excited to hear that someone was born on 10 October 2010 (10/10/10).
  1. A mindreader tells you that you’re a proofreader simply from looking at you.

OK, I might be the only one to tick this last one, but it gives me an excuse to tell a little story that makes me smile every time I remember it.

A couple of years ago I went to see Derren Brown, the fantastic illusionist and mentalist, in his London show. He said he was going to guess what job a person did just by “reading” them. Sitting in my seat in the darkened auditorium I wondered what I’d do if I caught one of the Frisbees he was throwing out to the audience. Would I step into the limelight or remain anonymous and pass the flying disc to someone else? As the plastic touched my hand I felt a jolt of excitement, jumped up from my seat, and wild horses couldn’t have stopped me from dashing up onto the stage.

A small group of us were asked to write our profession on a piece of paper and put it in a pocket. I didn’t have a pocket so I tucked my piece of paper saying “PROOFREADER” into the waistband of my trousers. He went through all the other volunteers, guessing correctly, and finally came to me. To be honest, some of his comments are now a bit of a blur, but he was witty and charming. And it turns out that I’m a closet show-off. What a thrill to stand in the spotlight! I’d not been on stage since the amateur dramatic years (maybe a post for another time…), and I loved it.

I do remember he mentioned how neat and carefully chosen my clothes were, and that I’d obviously spent time coordinating my jewellery (gulp – had he been in my bedroom earlier on when I’d been trying to decide which necklace, bracelet and earrings to wear?). With each comment he was getting closer to the right answer – working alone, stationery, pens, pencils and erasers, something to do with words. He scribbled with a black marker on a white board, and with a flourish he revealed that I was a:


I hope you’ve enjoyed my anecdote and the quiz. If you fancy a chat about words and books let’s meet via Twitter and Facebook. Also, please feel free to add your marks out of ten here, and share any other traits that you think a good proofreader needs.

..great fun, Wendy… thanks , m’Lady…



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