An introduction to the Hopfield Tales – by Mike Evers
Mike Evers – The story so far…
First, I would like to thank Tasha for giving me an opportunity to write about my work on her wonderful blog. I am the author of The Spirit Archer - a historical children’s novella published through GMTA Publishing. It’s a coming-of-age story and it features a famous English legend in a way which is probably a bit different to what you’re used to. I know Tasha has already helped get the word out about Spirit Archer, so I’m already in her debt.
I’ve also written The Chaosifier - a YA contemporary fantasy novel, which I’ve put on Amazon. It’s about a group of magical creatures who are tasked with solving some fairly major problems (WW3 for example!) and end up on quite an adventure.
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The Hopfield Tales
All of the stories I’ve written so far are set in the fictional town of Hopfield. The name is an amalgamation of the town where I live and a village nearby (Mirfield and Hopton). I moved to this area about seven years ago and immediately loved the place. This part of Yorkshire has gentle rolling moors and woodland and there’s a definite charm and character to the local people. I’ve always loved the gentle humour that the books of James Herriot (the vet) brought to the people of Yorkshire and I’ve tried to some extent to capture some of this in my work. The wilder moorland of Bronte Country is not too far away, so there’s a great tradition of fiction in the area. My debut novel, The Chaosifier, featured Hopfield as the location of the heroes’ secret base, but the story later expands out to London and Europe.
I have known about the famous English legend connected to my town and it gave me the inspiration to write Spirit Archer. I enjoy writing in the Paranormal/Urban Fantasy genres and the idea of bringing the spirit archer to life in the context of a cosy Yorkshire town really appealed to me. I’ve got a background in history and I really loved researching the period of King John as part of the archer’s back story. At the time I started it, the first edition of The Chaosifier had been out for a few weeks and I was very keen to get another story out fairly quickly – hence the decision to write Spirit Archer as a novella.
However, after I’d started Spirit Archer it soon dawned on me that it might be good to do a couple more novellas to go with it, which I could then call the Hopfield Tales and publish with my ace publisher, GMTA. Perhaps then at a later date (in a year or so) we might have the option to put the three stories together in a single package and call them - The Hopfield Tales. The Spirit Archer is the first of these tales.
Campaign of the Gods
The second tale will be Campaign of the Gods (COTG). I’m probably about two thirds of the way through this right now and I’m very excited about it. I don’t want to reveal too much, but I guess I can give you a bit of a teaser about some of the objects, places and characters, which in turn will hint at what the book’s about. You can expect an urban fantasy tale with a healthy dose of Norse mythology and Vikings:
· Stuart Gooding – Loving husband and local policeman in the town of Hopfield
· Joanne Kirby – Head teacher of local children’s school
· Tỳr– Norse God of Battle
· Thor – Well known Norse God of Thunder and sworn protector of Asgard and Midgard
· Asgard– The realm of the Norse gods
· Midgard– The realm of humans (e.g. Hopfield)
· Fenrir – The great and dreadful wolf – the bane of the gods
· Ivar Ragnarsson (aka Ivar the Boneless) – Legendary Viking commander and berserker who invaded England in the 9th Century.
· Campaign of the Gods – Fabulous board game played occasionally by Norse gods. It may be a bit faulty at this juncture…
So, there are some of the ingredients for the second story, but I’m not going to tell you the whole recipe just yet – you’ll just have to read the book when it comes out. It may not be quite what you expect, but expect an action-packed Midsummer’s romp.
Campaign of the Gods will hopefully be out August-ish (all being well). The third tale is already lurking in my mind and will probably take a completely different direction. It could be a darker autumn/winter tale to go with the spring and summer ones that are the first two. Wait and see :o).