Monday, May 20, 2013



Hi, M., so glad you could make it for a few days. Tell us, what kind of stories do you really write?
“What sort of stories do you write?” is a question authors are commonly asked. For quite some time it was a question I had a hard time answering. “Bits of this and that,” I would answer. Hardly, I think you would agree, a great answer. Luckily for me, the answer was supplied by a reviewer on Amazon…

Suddenly I was an author of supernatural and natural horror and I was quite comfortable with the definition. Certainly a lot of my earlier published work fell squarely into that category and, when I collected my published stories into ‘Olverston Grange …and Other Stories’ , I certainly had no qualms about describing it as horror.

As I was learning my trade I had produced a body of work that included the expected horror icons of ghosts, vampires and zombies which covers the supernatural… but what the natural? I had tales of a hen-pecked husband, a child who is scared of the dark and a host of deeply personal poetry and I swear there’s penguins too!

There is something deeply satisfying about supplying the reader with a scare. One review even statedThis is an anthology that will touch on fears you may not even know you have.’ And that gave me a sense of intense satisfaction. Being an author is as much about touching a reader as it is about giving freedom to the stories that rampage around your head.

\Countless times a day, I see or hear something that just has to appear in a story. I also have ‘What if?’ moments that lead to a story and, I must admit, when I am having a bad day then a character is a story is going to have a very bad day. Sometimes I even feel bad for them, a fictional being that sprang from my own mind. One such put-upon character is Tim Hewitson.

Tim is the hero of the first of my Blue Jackets series, ‘Induction’. During a rough phase in my life, Tim was born. I was particularly cruel to this young man. He is bullied at school, unhappy at home, and lives with what he has been told is a disability. He is granted his greatest wish when he finds out his condition is a superpower. Then life gets really hard!
I find myself wondering if giving my characters such a hard time is cathartic, that I’m somehow exorcising my own demons or whether I’m just being mean! I also wonder if other authors feel the same thing or whether I’m reading too much into things (excuse the pun).


 In part two of Blue Jackets, ‘Growth Spurt’, I was initially just as mean to our heroine, Lydia. However, by the end of the second part, I made sure she got her greatest wish and all her dreams came true. This marked a change in direction for me, instead of just tormenting a hapless character, I gave them a reward, a pay-off for the pain they put up with.
This was taken to further lengths in third part of the series, ‘Thursday’s Child’ in which we see Tuesday, who has had her powers from birth and is well adjusted with them, happy if fact. Her life is one of adventure and travel, one which fulfils her wanderlust and gives her a sense of purpose before throwing her into a huge problem whilst in Paris.

Underneath the tales of horror and heroism, there is another story. One of an author dealing with his own fears. I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 2009 and, almost overnight, became a wheelchair user. The fear of what had happened is most prevalent in ‘Scared’ which features in ‘Olverston Grange …and Other Stories’ and my acceptance of what has happened to me has, inevitably, coloured the stories I have written. I hope this is evident and mostly I hope you enjoy anything you read by me.


M. Leon Smith was born just outside of Newcastle-upon-Tyne and grew up in the rural North-East. Ever since reading ‘The Lord of the Rings’ at the age of eight he wanted to be a writer. It took until 2009 (some twenty-odd years later!) for him to actually chase the dream.

The second manuscript he submitted was published and he hasn’t looked back since. He is currently published by Books To Go Now and Skinned Knuckle Books.

Outside of his passion for literature, he is consumed by his love of music.

Links to find out more:
Twitter: @GeordieWriter
His own website:
Great post, M. I like the covers.
Folks, leave a comment for M, we'd love to hear from you,


1 comment:

  1. Hi, M.
    It's so nice to have you here today. I love the covers on your books.
    Anyway, welcome to the Flowers and Thorns blog.