Please give a warm welcome to debut novelist.
Clive Eaton initially trained as an aircraft engineer in the Royal Air Force and worked on Vulcan bombers for a number of years.
He now works as a freelance international trainer in the area of business improvement, and his work has taken him to over 30 countries around the globe.
The Pyramid Legacy is his debut novel and the inspiration came when Egyptian authorities discovered a secret door inside the Great Pyramid of Giza. Although nothing was actually found on that occasion it triggered a ‘what if?’ question, and from there the story developed. Clive is now writing the sequel, which will be titled “Operation Stonehenge”.
The Pyramid Legacy was initially published as an e-book, but now is available as a paperback.
Clive lives in a very peaceful setting, with his wife Judy, in the heart of rural Norfolk, England, which he believes is an amazing place for getting in the right mood for writing.
What do you do when you are not writing?
I’m a freelance business management trainer and have delivered training programmes in over 30 countries across the globe.
What inspired you to become a writer?
I spend a lot of time writing training material, which at times is quite tedious. With all the travelling, and staying in hotels, I wanted to use my time productively, and writing novels, which I get an immense buzz from, started from there.
What was your inspiration for The Pyramid Legacy?
When I was a child I watched a movie (in black and white) which featured the Great Pyramid of Giza. I don’t remember the title of the film, but the images have stayed with me for years. Then, several years ago an attempt was made to see behind a secret door inside Khufu’s pyramid; without success. My mind started to race with ideas of what may lie behind the door – and so ‘The Pyramid Legacy’ was born.
Tell us about your book?
It is set in the near future, and the lead character, Ben Anderson, is a robotics engineer. He’s developed a machine with the capability of peering behind the secret door. What is found is a staggering image that results in murder, and a race to find other pieces of a complex puzzle. The image, which the Great Pyramid of Giza has been protecting for 4,000 years, places a big question mark over who the built the Pyramids in the first place.
What research did you do for The Pyramid Legacy?
I spent hours and hours researching all the different aspects within the book, including a field trip to the Pyramids themselves. Along the way I found more and more aspects linking some of the great monuments of the era, when the Pyramids were allegedly built, which resulted in a plot for the sequel.
Are any elements of your book based on real life experiences/people?
The characters are a composite of many people I have met in my life (e.g. I spent 7 years in the British Forces as an aircraft engineer) and I’ve given the lead character one of my personal phobias – but you’ll have to read the book to find out what it is.
If The Pyramid Legacy was made in to a film which actor(s), past or present, do you envision in the lead role(s)?
My wife, who is a consultant clinical psychologist, and fully understands where I’m coming from with my characters, has a very clear idea of who should play the lead role – Ewan McGregor. I’m inclined to agree.
If your book had a soundtrack which artists would feature on it?
My favourite band is The Who, and Pete Townshend has written some amazing stuff. In 1972 he wrote a song called ‘Relay’ where he envisaged a system for ‘spreading the word’. I guess today that system is the Internet. A sound track penned by a forward thinker like Pete Townshend would be awesome.
What are you currently working on?
I’m currently writing the sequel to The Pyramid Legacy, which is titled Operation Stonehenge. The story developed from discovering a very clear link between the Pyramids and Stonehenge.
What is your writing process?
Once I have a concept for a plot in my head I write a detailed outline. Then I give the key characters 5 or 6 specific characteristics. I try to visualise the story like a film. This helps in both character development and building on the different aspects of the plot. Everything goes straight into a word processor, although I do use the ‘memo’ function within my mobile phone to jot down ideas which occur to me whilst I’m on the move.
Do you use anything to sustain you during the writing process? Coffee? Chocolate? Music?
I like to write in silence, without outside interruptions. Living in rural Norfolk helps a lot. Frequent visits to the kitchen to grab a coffee is also part of the process.
What prompted you to self publish The Pyramid Legacy?
Apart from the ‘Dear John’ letters sent out by agents, I found out from my editor that it can take between 18 months and two years to get a book to print. With the Internet offering e-books I believe the industry is going to go through some massive changes. I didn’t want my work sitting on a hard drive waiting endlessly for agents just to dismiss it out of hand. So I took the plunge and self-published, but only after a thorough and professional edit.
Can you tell us about the challenges in writing and publishing your first novel?
The writing was the easy bit, apart from the painstaking editing etc. Publishing is the hard bit. It has been an enormous learning curve, and I still feel I’m probably on the lower slopes. But I feel I’m a fast learner.
Do you ever experience writers block? How do you overcome it?
Sometimes I get the odd block, but it is more about how to best execute a specific scene/chapter. The story is clear in my head, but the detail can sometimes cause the odd barrier. A break and change of scenery for a short while often overcomes the problem.
Do you have any advice for aspiring writers?
Believe in yourself, and don’t take rejection from agents as an indication your work isn’t up to scratch. It is a VERY subjective industry. How many agents must be kicking themselves for passing on the likes of JK Rowling, to name just one very successful author?
Why did you choose to write adult fiction?
I felt the best way to approach writing was to write something that I would like to read. If I don’t like it why would others want to read it? So that left adult fiction as the only option.
How did you choose the genre you write in? What inspired you to write it?
I’ve always tended to gravitate towards books which fall under three broad headings; suspense, thriller and mystery. So I embarked upon the task of trying to cover all three. Many reviewers of the book mention sci-fi, but my intention isn’t to enter the sci-fi market. However, to deliver certain aspects of the story I needed to take a small step into the near future.
How did you get interested in your chosen genre?
I’ve always enjoyed books which are littered with suspense and action, that take twists and turns, and at times make the reader think. The Pyramid Legacy covers a number of topics which can easily be the subject of great debate. My own philosophy is to always keep an open mind and never dismiss any idea, no matter how bizarre it could seem. I wonder if the likes of Henry VIII ever considered man landing on the Moon?
What books have inspired you?
The list is endless, but in recent years I’ve enjoyed reading books by Michael Cordy, Raymond Khoury, Sam Bourne, and the late Paul Sussman. I also read a lot of non-fiction, such as books by Robert Bauval.
What was your favourite book as a child/teenager?
As a child the ‘Biggles’ series by Captain W.E. Johns. Total escapism for a young lad.
What are you currently reading? Raymond Khoury’s ‘The Templar Salvation’.
What was the last book you recommended to a friend?
‘The Colour of Blood’, by Michael Cordy. I’ve read all his books and not one has disappointed me. Come on Michael, where is your next one?
What/Who inspired you as a reader?
The aforementioned Captain W.E. Johns.
Just for fun…
Paper, Audio or eBook?
I’m still ‘old school’ and love the feel of book in my hands.
Tea or Coffee?
Coffee first thing, tea in the afternoon. When arriving back from an overseas trip it has to be a cup of tea.
Slippers or barefoot?
Shower or Bath?
Marmite: Love it? Hate it?
Yuk! Enough said?
Email or postcard?
Do postcards still exist?
For over four millennia the Great Pyramid of Giza has guarded a secret image; until NOW!
A prominent young Egyptologist is murdered by a colleague, deep within the bowels of the Great Pyramid of Giza. The authorities are keen to cover it up, but they know they can’t achieve total closure whilst English robotics engineer, Ben Anderson, remains in possession of a powerful image. An image, which suggests the Great Pyramid at Giza was not built by ancient Egyptians.
What the Egyptian authorities don’t know is that unless the true meaning behind the image can be established, along with other images which will later surface, the future of mankind will face the most serious threat imaginable. Anderson manages to escape Egypt at the earliest opportunity, together with his astrophysicist girlfriend, Samantha Gibson, but the authorities are quickly on their tail when it becomes evident they have arrested the wrong person. Keen to establish who really built the Pyramids, Anderson seeks to gain additional proof to support his theory.
As he and Gibson begin to discover a series of seemingly disparate clues, they soon realise that everything is far from straightforward. Whilst seeking additional resources, Gibson is unwittingly embroiled in the internal politics of the US military, with the result that she becomes a pawn in a vicious power struggle involving a corrupt senior officer. Her path crosses that of an ex-lover and her relationship with Anderson stretches to breaking point. As Anderson begins to see Gibson from a totally different perspective, his focus changes, and he pushes himself well beyond the limits of his comfort zone in an attempt to discover the truth. Gibson is now prepared to do anything to fulfil a lifetime ambition, but as her objective becomes almost within her grasp a virulent virus threatens to stop her . . . and Anderson has the antidote . . . together with a totally different agenda. And so an unprecedented race begins to finally reveal the true legacy of the Great Pyramid of Giza.
The Pyramid Legacy is a thriller, but also has a story of love and deceit deeply woven in