I'm really pleased to announce a few upcoming events, including a bit of a mini tour to celebrate my literary hero, Ian Fleming. Fleming would have been 110 this May and he was a pretty fascinating character.

I'll be chatting about some of the strong male role models who influenced the young Fleming, and and how this helped create the character who remains unsurpassed in modern popular culture - James Bond.

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Contact TV Interview with thriller author Chris Allen

This November, CONTACT TV broadcast its first ‘Scope’ – a live video broadcast on Periscope – with a live interview at home with Chris Allen, action writer and creator of the bestselling black-ops Interpol / Intrepid series.

During the live broadcast, there was one viewer question we didn’t get to.

During our discussion around self publishing and engaging with an on-line community, @bobcrawshaw (who runs Maine Street Marketing) asked, “How did you find that on-line community?”

Chris responds:  "I think the online community actually found us. What I mean is that by sharing enough background about my service history and the premise around which the book was developed, it seemed that the extended service and ex-service network made the connection quite naturally and then got on board. I think the most important aspect that I’ve learned from Sarah in regard to interaction online, is that we made all (well, most) of our online messaging as conversational as possible – avoiding the hard sell that so many authors tend to resort to. I really believe that approach appealed to the service community. Bringing people along with how I got to be a writer (albeit a very new one!) seemed to resonate a lot more with people than trying to flog the book itself. This is as true today as it was four or five years ago. For instance, I get a lot more engagement online when I share flashback photos from my career or an anecdote about an experience I’ve had, rather than any posts that may be specifically book related. It’s weird!"

You can watch the Interview on Contact TV below.



With secret movie business underway, signed to Peony Literary Agency in Hong Kong, a trip to London & Los Angeles, and now to completing Avenger, my year’s been well and truly action-packed.

Around this time last year, I’d just re-released Defender and Hunter through Momentum.  

Soon, it’ll be the same for Avenger and I just hope that you'll enjoy this new story, featuring the first female Intrepid agent putting Alex Morgan through his paces as they track down the architects of human trafficking.

With the year that was, I'm looking forward to finishing Intrepid 3 and having a float around on the pool for a few hours, but this blog is a throwback to the posts you enjoyed the most.

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My Hollywood Dream Cast for Hunter

A few blogs ago, back in January, I participated in the blog equivalent of a chain mail letter, an online challenge called The Next Big Thing. In it, I mentioned a couple of actors that I’d like to see play my characters in Defender.

Now this week, for Tia at The Serious Reader blog, I've thoroughly enjoyed putting together a short and snappy ‘Hollywood Star Cast’ for my second action thriller in the Alex Morgan espionage series, Hunter with descriptions of the characters included. You can read it here.

In this post I will be further explaining why I think these and other actors would be the perfect fit to play the following five of the main characters in Hunter. They are by no means the only actors who could play these roles but I do like to have people pegged in my mind as I write - it helps me bring the characters to life.

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I'll tell you right now, I don't go for movie reviews that spoil the plot. And to tell you much about this movie, Iron Man 3, starring Robert Downey Jnr, Guy Pearce and Gwenyth Paltrow, would be to demystify some of the twists and turns that are best enjoyed by just sitting in a darkened theatre for two and a half hours with this very cool cast, script and staging smack-bang in front of you.​

Here's five reasons Iron Man 3 and Robert Downey Jnr rock.

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Being in the line of fire certainly helps a scene to come alive, but it isn’t the only thing. If the beastly writer’s block ever pops up, I know I can always trust the big screen to throw me some ideas.

Here’s my list of the Top Best Classic Action Films that I turn to when the ol’ memory needs reviving.

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If, like me, you’re an Ian Fleming fan first and a Bond movie fan second, mark my words: you will love SKYFALL. If however, you prefer the vodka martinis, the cheesy one-liners, or the gadgets and gimmicks of earlier Bond films – the exploding pens, invisible cars and so on– don’t despair. The essential ingredients of the 007 franchise – glamour, humour, charm - are still front and centre in the long-awaited 50th anniversary 23rd film directed by Sam Mendes, but they’re present in a way that is much more a reflection of our times and tastes. The requirement to suspend your disbelief still holds strong and there’s just enough of the old tricks & gadgets to remind you of the rich history behind any Bond film. Besides, I’d be a hypocrite if I decried any story that presents  such a perfect balance of gritty realism with a liberal dose of escapism!

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