Paul Andruss Comes Clean
Sally and I knew it wouldn’t take long for you clever lot to rumble us. Knowing the joke was wearing thin we chose leave some hefty clues when Horatio Grin returned for his second guest spot with Smorgasbord.
Horatio Grin is a fictional character from my novel Thomas the Rhymer. He is an occultist skilled in magic who works for a shadowy organisation of accountants, specialising in rescuing children kidnapped by the fairies. And you thought accountants were boring!
I suspect many of you might have noticed in his 2nd week Mr Grin spoke of his deceased personal secretary as Dorothy. In Thomas the Rhymer, I named Mr Grin’s P.A. Dorothy in tribute to my friend, work’s mum’ and colleague, the subject of the 2nd Writer in Residence post for Sally: ‘My Gift from God’.
Mr Grin’s initial contributions for his 2nd stint with Smorgasbord involved 3 tales. The sharp-eyed among you will have noticed an uncanny parallel between The Fairy Bride to The Fairy Maid post I wrote for Sue Vincent: https://scvincent.com/…/guest-author-paul-andruss-the-fairy-maid-and-free-ebooks/
The Fairy Wife and The Changeling both originated in a story Rosie tells Jack in the novel.
We are sure Sue Vincent guessed (and sportingly kept stumm), for apart from the fact there is no fooling Sue, I included a photograph of Mr Grin in another post I did for her on The Story of Thomas the Rhymer: https://scvincent.com/…/guest-author-paul-andruss-the-story-of-thomas-the-rhymer/
Brigid Gallagher: https://watchingthedaisies.com/ wondered if Mr Grin and Sally’s Writer in Residence were twins. I coyly responded…
Dear Brigid, I am flattered you think so. As you know Mr Grin is featured on the Great British Occultists website: http://britishocculthistory.yolasite.com/
Why would anyone go to the trouble of creating a phony website with a phony photograph of Mr Grin based on the actor Charles Grey playing Mocata in the film The Devil Rides Out set against a background of the blue drawing room in Buckingham Palace? It seems very unlikely.
I think you need to ask yourself is an author who writes fiction really the type of person to make things up?
Apart from all that… well spotted!
At this point I need to say if you were outraged by this calumny then I take full responsibility.
If however you consider this a delightful wheeze, in what is traditionally the silly season of the British Newspapers, the period when parliament was in recess and Fleet Street scrabbled for stories, no matter how far-fetched, to fill column inches, then Sally deserves at least 50% of the credit.
Now if you want to learn about the enigmatic Mr Grin, grab yourself a cuppa or a glass of your favourite tipple and let’s gossip.
The surname Grin came about because I thought it was both sinister and jolly.
He was christened Horatio after Lord Nelson who made his mistress Lady Emma Hamilton a bequest to the nation in his will. Nelson met Emma when she was married to the elderly Sir William Hamilton. He accepted the affair, happily living in a menage-a-trois with Nelson and Emma that beguiled the British public.
Nelson asked the government to provide for Emma and their child in his will. Despite his status as a national hero they ignored him. Emma died in poverty in Calais. Their daughter Horatia never publically acknowledged Emma as her mother.
The photograph of Mr Grin came about when I was developing the Thomas the Rhymer website and started playing with Photoshop. I had always been fond of the Devil Rides Out.
Later, I wrote an essay turning it into Mr Grin’s rough notes for a speech to new recruits. It was for new web content and to present the ideas underpinning the book to readers who wanted to know more. The 6 essays I later reused in Mr Grin’s 1st Smorgasbord appearance grew from there as did the phony British Occultists website. Again sharp-eyed visitors no doubt noticed it contains articles suspiciously similar to some blog posts.
Before I gained experience blogging, Mr Grin was ideal for presenting the ideas underpinning Thomas the Rhymer. He could speak as a scientist without being weighed down by uncertainties. I felt if you wanted that, you’d read textbooks.
I worked hard to keep things factual. But all facts are controversial. For every argument there is a counter argument and for every proof, a denial. Scientific ideas change quite rapidly. When I started writing Thomas the Rhymer palaeontologists categorically denied we ever mated with dumb stupid and brutish Neanderthals. After the Neanderthal Genome Project, not one of those ideas remains.
I was delighted by the reception Mr Gin’s work received on Smorgasbord and everyone’s generosity. I was also a little embarrassed.
Sally suggested the posts might look good in book form, which we could give away as a free download. I wanted to add a bit more value with new essays.
Genius Loci and Angels and Demons (featured Thursday and Friday of Mr Grins 2nd stint) were the result. In addition Mr Grin’s book has two new essays: Parallel Planes discusses heaven, hell and other ethereal realms. While In Search of the Multiverse discusses ethereal planes in terms of Mr Grin’s subject Quantum Physics. Be prepared for some surprises in that one. It surprised me!
All that remains is for me to say thanks for supporting Mr Grin and hope you were entertained as much as you seemed to be.
I think you will agree with me that the articles that Horatio (aka Paul) has shared with us over the last three weeks have been thought provoking, brilliantly illustrated observations about the beliefs and myths that we have grown up. I will admit to taking some of those myths and legends for granted without delving into them to discover truths and in some cases fabrications.
Paul has compiled all of the essays with the two new additional ones (I have read and they are amazing) into either an Epub format or a pdf. This will enable you to have one source for all the essays in book format.
I know many of you may have a Kindle rather than Epub reader but that is easily remedied.. We use Calibre for all our ebook reading and it can be downloaded to your computer of device from this safe link: https://calibre-ebook.com/
As to the actual copies please email me on firstname.lastname@example.org and I just need to know if you would like in Epub or pdf format and I will email you back.
Thanks for all your comments for the Horatio Grin articles and the book will be available here until August.. so get your copy now.