What can you find here? Reviews of new and not quite so new Sherlock Holmes novels and collections. Interviews with authors, link to blogs worth following, links to where you can purchase my books and some reviews of my work garnered from Amazon sites. Plus a few scary pics of me and a link to various Lyme Regis videos on YouTube...see what we do here and how....and indeed why!!! Next to the Lyme Regis Video Bar is a Jeremy Brett as Holmes Video Bar and now a Ross K Video Bar. And stories and poems galore in the archives.

Saturday, 8 December 2012

An interview with exciting, young writer Cassie Parkes

Cassie Parkes is seventeen,  likes Victorian things. Yes, you did read that correctly. They are slightly more common than you might think! She is a poet and has published a volume of Holmesian poetry straight to Kindle and also contributed to Tales From The Stranger's Room Vol. 2 (published by MX Publishing)

You are a young writer, where do you see your future writing career taking you?
I am indeed a young writer! I'm young enough to still have a Withnail-esque attitude of "I can do anything!", so right now, I'd love to think that I could make a proper career out of my writing one day. I'd also love to try out every form of writing, too: prose, scripts, poetry etc. and really experiment with lots of different styles/platforms. There's a ton of dream characters I'd like to write for: Sherlock Holmes, The Doctor... basically, I think I'd quite like to be the future Mark Gatiss, haha!

You have an affinty for all things Victorian. Where did this come from?   I think my love of the Victorian era stems from the literature I enjoy: I've been a lifelong fan of Wilde and Conan Doyle, and their wonderful work encouraged a deep passion for the time in which they were writing. Sometimes I think I'd love to have lived in the 1800's, but I must sadly admit that I think I'd miss my phone too much! ("Timetravel? Nah, I'd rather play Angry Birds, thanks!")

Do you feel, then, out of time somehow? Or even out of step with modern life?   Oh definitely, sometimes. I'm awful with modern music, especially. My iPod is full of 80's music, haha! Like I mentioned before though, I am desperately grateful to live in the Internet age. Researching my work is made very simple, and video clips/music from different time periods often prove to be very powerful/inspiring, so I'm extremely grateful for the fact that I can access them easily.   There is on occasion a gay theme in your writing, is that a subject close to your heart?  
This is something a lot of people ask me about, and I'm never quite sure how to answer it. The decision to make a character (or characters!) gay is not usually a conscious one, rather my characters often pop into my head fully-formed, and their being gay is simply a part of who they are. Very rarely do I set out to write something thinking: "Right, this character will be gay and (s)he will show the struggles of non-heterosexual relationships." However, I do always strive to portray any gay characters in a positive light. It's often remarked that we live in a very liberal and open-minded society, yet homophobia is definitely still present. So when I do write a gay character, I like to think I'm fighting back at idiots like Nick Griffin, even if it's only in some small manner. (How that fool is still allowed an opinion, let alone a public one, I'll never know.) Placing gay characters in a time where homosexuality was still illegal also adds a great sense of danger to my texts, but I make sure not to simply have them be gay to "spice it up a little". Like I say, their being gay is simply a part of their character.

Your poetry on the subject of Sherlock Holmes related matters is excellent. Do you see yourself writing a full-blown pastiche?   Firstly, thank you! I'm delighted to know that you enjoyed them. The idea of writing a complete pastiche is something I've thought about many times, but the actual task is a very daunting and challenging one. I think I'd ideally like to wait until I'm slightly more experienced with writing before I commit myself to adding my own ideas to such a vast and revered circle of pastiche writers. It's something I would definitely like to do one day, but perhaps not one day too near in the future. I want to make sure I can get Holmes and Watson to sit perfectly within my mind before I start writing for them.

What other projects will be unfolding in the near future?   Ooh, now that would be telling! But I'll give you a few hints, so as not to be too cruel. My main piece right now is a novel about a post-WW1 war artist, who has PTSD and is trying to cope with life as best he can. The other piece is about highwaymen...who are also vampires. (Before anyone starts yelling "Twilight!" at me, my vampires are charming and frilly, as all good vampires should be.) I'll be posting updates about all of my writing on my Twitter account (@JamRolls) and on my blog (, so follow either of those if you're interested!

What next? University? Or?   I'd quite like to take a Gap Year to get some writing done, but I need to finish sixth form with some good grades first! I'm just going to keep on writing, and hopefully people will keep enjoying my work. After that-who knows? I'm excited though. Bring it on, life!

You can purchase Cassie's collection, 'The Diogenes Dilemma and other Sherlock Holmes Poetry' here: The Diogenes Dilemma

And visit Cassie's web page here:

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