Hello everyone! I’m happy to welcome the Morcans – Lance (the father) and James (the son) – on my blog.
James and Lance Morcan write in collaboration, and they are the rare New Zealand father-and-son writing team who have co-authored 20 fiction and non-fiction book titles published by Sterling Gate Books. James is based in Sydney, Australia while James is based on NZ, so their collaboration is essentially conducted long-distance, albeit with the help of daily Skype and phone calls.
Lance is a former journalist/newspaper editor with experience in all media. James is also an actor and has accrued leading roles in film, television and also on stage. His film credits can be viewed here.
They are also screenwriters and filmmakers and have adapted several of their novels to feature film screenplays. These are in early development with their production company Morcan Motion Pictures. Several of their film projects can be viewed here.
Several of their books have been regular visitors to Amazon’s bestseller lists. These include the novels Into the Americas (a historical adventure) and The Ninth Orphan (an international thriller) and the non-fiction books, Genius Intelligence and Antigravity Propulsion. All of their books can be viewed on their Amazon author pages at click for James and Click for Lance.
Their latest non-fiction book, Debunking Holocaust Denial Theories: Two Non-Jews Affirm the Historicity of the Nazi Genocide, written in close collaboration with Holocaust survivors, has sparked an outcry from Holocaust deniers – as some of the reviews reveal. One of the world’s ‘leading’ deniers, who also happens to be an author and publisher (of anti-Semitic books) went so far as to publish a book (with an identical cover image to theirs and a near-identical title) debunking their book!
For additional information on their various projects, they refer followers to their popular Morcan Books & Films Blog.
They have also established a fast-growing discussion group on Goodreads called The Underground Knowledge group – and as the title suggests it’s designed to encourage debates about important and underreported issues of our era. (All you need is an inquiring mind, an interest in the world we live in and a desire to learn or share “underground knowledge”). Check it out. More members are welcome!
Their latest book is a historical adventure titled White Spirit (A novel based on a true story). It’s a 1,000-page epic set in 19th Century Australia and based on the remarkable true story of Irish convict John Graham. Details are to be seen below:
After escaping from Australia’s notorious Moreton Bay Penal Settlement, Irish convict, John Graham finds refuge with the Kabi, a tribe of Aborigines who eventually accept him as one of their own.
Attempts to recapture Graham are orchestrated by a variety of contrasting characters working for the all-pervasive British Empire. They include Moreton Bay’s tyrannical, opium-addicted commandant Lord Cheetham, the dashing yet warlike Lieutenant Hogan, native tracker Barega and the penal settlement’s captain, Tom Marsden.
Marsden’s young daughter Helen, a progressive lady ahead of her time who is both an egalitarian and a feminist, boldly inserts herself into the clash between the Irish convict, her father, and Moreton Bay’s other iron-fisted rulers. Helen complicates things further when she finds herself in a Pride and Prejudice-style love triangle with men on opposite sides of the conflict.
When Scottish woman Eliza Fraser is found shipwrecked and close to death in Kabi territory, Graham and his legion of pursuers, as well as the Irishman’s adopted Aboriginal family, are all forced to navigate a multi-faceted rescue mission. The precarious rendezvous is made all the more dangerous by Helen Marsden’s ethically-driven meddling that often outwits the men involved.
WHITE SPIRIT is not only based on arguably the great Australian (true) story, a sweeping tale that encapsulates all the nuances of the southern continent’s unique history, it also provides readers with detailed insights into the tribal life of First Australian (Aboriginal) peoples.
Together with this information about them and their new book, White Spirit, I also interviewed them, and their answers are written below. Read them now to get to know them more!
1. How did you two write the story and where the concept or plot came from?
We lived in the Moreton Bay area (where White Spirit is set) in Australia for over five years and always believed John Graham’s story needed to be told. The plot took shape as we researched Graham and familiarised ourselves with his incredible adventures.
2. How many rewrites did both of you go through before you get to the final draft?
White Spirit underwent so many rewrites we lost count…over many, many years.
3. What do you think this book makes a good story?
Essentially the fact that White Spirit is based on a true story. As is often the case, truth is stranger than fiction, and Graham’s story is so incredible it must surely rank as one of the great wilderness survival tales.
4. How many books did you write before this book and which of those did an impact on your lives?
White Spirit is our 20th published title and our seventh novel. The other books are all non-fiction. It’s fair to say each book has impacted on our lives because, without exception, we poured our hearts and souls into writing them.
5. Which authors or poets influenced your work?
Not sure about James, but no poets influenced my work. As for authors, James has been influenced by the likes of Hermann Hesse, Stephen King, Nikola Tessla, Sibel Edmonds, Haruki Murakami, Artie Lange, and Brian Bates; I have been influenced by James Michener, Wilbur Smith, John Grisham, Conn Iggulden and (my favourite author) Nelson deMille.
6. What literary pilgrimages have you gone on?
We do tend to get “stuck” on an author and read all his or her books. I’ve just read all deMille’s novels and am now working my way with pleasure through Grisham’s. Both great writers.
7. What is the first book that made you cry?
Can’t speak for James, but none have made me cry. Unless you count our own book Debunking Holocaust Denial Theories… Interviewing Holocaust survivors and researching the history for that book was harrowing and emotional, to say the least. A few novels (de Mille’s in particular) have made me laugh out loud.
8. What is the most unethical practice in the publishing industry?
The advent of online and ebook publishing has unearthed numerous unethical practices, ranging from manipulation of a book’s rankings via “friendly” reviews to trolls and even disgruntled authors sabotaging books via destructive reviews and review ratings.
9. Does writing energize or exhaust you?
Both given when we work on a book, we work around the clock 24/7.
10. What are common traps for aspiring writers?
The most common trap would be to believe your job is done when you’ve completed the first draft of a book. The truth is at that point, your job is just beginning. Another trap is to feel defeated when you have the dreaded writer’s block. Don’t give in to it…just have a break (for an hour, a day, a week if necessary) and come back to it when you’re fresh.
11. Do you want each book to stand on its own, or are you trying to build a body of work with connections between each book?
Some of our fiction and non-fiction books are part of a series, so obviously, these connect. The others are stand-alone books.
That’s it! I hope you were able to know the authors behind the new historical adventure novel, White Spirit. If you’d like to read the book, just click here to direct you on Amazon.
Thank you, guys! Thank you too to the Morcans for being here on my blog today! Have a wonderful week, everyone!