13 Aug 2015

Why a sequel to CONDITIONS?

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The short answer is: I left a few of the characters in the lurch and wanted to give them a much needed closure. Book_marketing2-lrg

Conditions has an ensemble cast, a group of friends and family who gather around Charles, a man with a mental condition. His condition and how people handle it  becomes the centre piece, even though the other characters have their own lives and problems, too. You can follow these links to read my character profiles for Charles, Elaine, Catherine, Martha, Tony, Simon, and Edgar.

Every life and individual situation is different and so it was important for me to show a snapshot of the lives and of the problems. To end ‘Conditions’ on a “and they lived happily-ever-after” note would have been simplifying the Conditions and unrealistic.  However, there were many specific calls to help Martha out of her ditch and to explore Simon’s life further.PhotoFunia-1406374f

 To not turn the sequel into a mere soap opera by continuing all sub-plots with new and sensational developments I chose a setting that unites all the characters one year on and provides another snapshot. Some will have improved their lives, others will not. My aim with “Conditions” was to sensitise readers and make them think about tolerance and acceptance. With the sequel, “Conditioned” I want readers to look beyond their attitude towards Conditions and more at what we all do and what we can do to overcome our challenges.

con•di•tioned
adj.

1. existing under or subject to conditions.
2. characterized by a predictable or consistent pattern of behavior or thought as a result of being subjected to certaincircumstances or conditions.
3. acquired through conditioning: conditioned behavior patterns.
4. in a fit or suitable condition.
5. accustomed.

The book is being edited now and is set for a fall release.

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Conditions

When Charles and Tony’s mother dies the estranged brothers must struggle to pick up the pieces, particularly so given that one of them is mentally challenged and the other bitter about his place within the family. 
The conflict is drawn out over materialistic issues, but there are other underlying problems which go to the heart of what it means to be part of a family which, in one way or another. has cast one aside.
Prejudice, misconceptions and the human condition in all forms feature in this contemporary drama revolving around a group of people who attend the subsequent funeral at the British South Coast. 
Meet flamboyant gardener Charles, loner Simon, selfless psychic Elaine, narcissistic body-builder Edgar, Martha and her version of unconditional love and many others as they try to deal with the event and its aftermath.

On Amazon: http://smarturl.it/CONDITIONSCFF

Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/529337

On iTunes: https://itun.es/i6LL8nt

Nook Book Link: http://ow.ly/LMhGM

On Goodreads: http://ow.ly/C0Ziw

On Facebook: http://ow.ly/C0ZqX

11 Mar 2015

“IN SEARCH OF A REVOLUTION” – Pre-release #Excerpt

4 Comments News

ISoaR Kindle CoverTwo more weeks until my new novel IN SEARCH OF A REVOLUTION will be released on March 26th. Below is the blurb and an excerpt to whet your appetite (you can already pre-order the book on Amazon)

In 1918 young Zacharias Nielsen boards a ship in Copenhagen to join the Red Guards in the Finnish Civil War. Encouraged by an idolised teacher with communist leanings, he follows the call for help from his Nordic Comrades, despite his privileged background. His best friend, Ansgar, has opposing political ideals to Zacharias but, for his own personal reasons, finds himself soon stuck in the Scandinavian North with Zacharias and Raisa, a Finnish nurse who helps them in their new life. Through the years that follow the brotherly war the trio see the political landscape in Finland and Europe change as Communists and Fascists try to make their mark and attempt to change the world order. Our heroes must find their own personal and ideological place in these turbulent times as friendship, honour, idealism and love triangles bring out some personal truths. JK002 The book spans almost thirty years of history and the various Finnish conflicts: Civil War, Winter War, Continuation War and the Lapland War. Watch the political and personal self discovery of characters in search of their own revolution.

Here is a short excerpt from the book:

Chapter 1: A Tavern in Copenhagen, January 1918

copenhagen-237561_640Zacharias Nielsen’s mind was full of joyous anticipation, so much, he could hardly stay put in his seat. Even when he was sitting his legs were shaking fast and his hands were rubbing nervously up and down his trouser legs. The thought of the ship journey tomorrow morning was almost too much to bear. An electric pulse ran down his spine whenever the thought recurred: It was really happening.  The tavern was dark so Zacharias had to strain his eyes whenever someone entered the room. He sat on a hard wooden bench behind a long narrow trestle table near one of the corners so he could see both the entrance and the serving bar. His drinking companion and dear friend, Ansgar, could not help smiling.  “I’ll be missing your over-excitement the most,” he said. Zacharias shrugged his shoulders, smiled and continued to stare at the entrance to the tavern. in search of a revolution - redoneIn the summer this place was always heaving with bicycle messengers and postmen who came to unwind after their shifts, but tonight it was almost empty and the two had the large table all to themselves. The tavern was located in the basement of a large stone building near the government buildings, several few steps down from the cobblestone pavement, and with its low ceilings it always felt dark and cozy, even in the summer. In winter, the early nightfall turned the countryside too soon to darkness, and the resulting lack of custom gave the place an empty and incomplete feeling.  With the days so short, it always felt as if it were much later than it actually was, and somehow that seemed to persuade most of the regulars to go home earlier, or not to come out drinking at all.  Beside the two friends, only a handful of customers were there, all chatting quietly instead of engaged in often noisy arguments and beer-fuelled discussions. images (5)“Where is everybody?” Zacharias asked, his eyes scouring the dark interior “Everyone’s been invited!” He took off his cap and ran his hand through his curly blond hair before putting the cap back on. Even though he was wearing thick grey trousers and a heavy winter coat, he looked unhealthily slim, an impression that was not helped by his pale complexion and his restless behaviour. “It’s cold and dark,” Ansgar pointed out calmly. Much taller and stronger built than his friend and blessed with handsome dark looks, he was physically and emotionally a stark contrast to Zacharias. “It’s hardly tempting to leave your house, especially to celebrate that you are leaving all of your friends.” “Do you think they disapprove?” Zacharias asked. MarshallCG“Who can say?” Ansgar replied and took a sip from his beer. “Joining the war in Finland on the side of the Reds will impress some of them, of that I am sure. They might not to turn up because they haven’t got the guts to do it themselves.” “Who wouldn’t be jealous?” Zacharias said, sonding naïve and proud at the same time. “It’s the opportunity of this century, to eradicate the divide between rich and poor and to bring all humans together. Imagine what the world will be like when the revolution has come? Ansgar, that’s a much better cause to fight for than the assassination of an Austrian heir to the throne.” “I wish you were right,” Ansgar said, trying to sound serious, but the enthusiasm of his friend was infectious and he couldn’t help smiling. “About the revolution or my friends?” Zacharias asked. suojeluskunta2“Both!” Ansgar said and winked. Zacharias shrugged his shoulders and turned his attention back into the room, which he continued to scan for new arrivals. “Not everyone is like you,” Ansgar explained. “I still remember when I joined your school and the other students called me a pig and the poor farmer’s child. The endless fist fights for my honour and how nobody but you would ever speak to me at first. You never joined their banter and instead offered me a place in your life. You treated me as an equal even though you came from a far more privileged background.” “The others soon did the same,” Zacharias reminded him. “Yes, once they all learned how big my father’s pig farm was and how wealthy,” Ansgar replied dismissively. “You were a friend regardless,” he said and smiled at his friend briefly with warmth before adding in a more concerned tone: “Don’t expect much of that fraternity in Finland in the heat of a revolution. Old prejudices will always remain and no ideology can erase them from people’s minds. You’ll always be a little too posh in the eyes of your comrades, I reckon.” “Nonsense,” Zacharias replied. “I made friends with you, the farmer’s boy. I shall do the same in Finland.” “Still, your lack of prejudice separates you from the rest of us,” Ansgar said and took a sip of his beer. “It’s your strength and your weakness.” “It’s unity that makes us strong,” Zacharias replied animatedly. “Even if your family had been as poor as everyone assumed, you had a lot to contribute. If it wasn’t for you I wouldn’t know how to fight for myself. I was considered a weakling until you taught me the ropes of boxing and how to stand up to attackers. I wouldn’t dare go to a war were it not for your lessons in that regard.” 83942_kuva“In that case, I wish I hadn’t taught you,” Ansgar said in a serious tone but with a broad smile. “I don’t want to lose a friend because the Grand Duchy of Finland can’t make up its mind what kind of country it is going to be. I’d rather you got injured in the boxing ring.”

The book on Amazon: http://smarturl.it/SearchofRevolution

and on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25113498-in-search-of-a-revolution

Meanwhile “The Luck of the Weissensteiners”, my first historical novel about Slovakia during WW2 is part of a multi-author $.099 10 book box set: “At Odds with Destiny”

Bestselling, critically acclaimed, and notoriously creative authors from across the book continuum join forces to bring you At Odds with Destiny, everything you’ve wanted in a boxed set but thought you’d never find: full-length novels brimming with myth, fantasy, mystery, history, romance, drama, originality, heroism, and suspense. Finding themselves at odds with destiny, the characters in these stories fight to shape their future and define who they are. Come follow them in their amazing journeys.

✿ Kindle: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00SHYGG7C/
✿ Nook: http://tinyurl.com/at-odds4nook
✿ iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id959421650
✿ Kobo: http://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/at-odds-with-destiny
✿ Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/511673

 

CHRISTOPH FISCHER 922159_10151345337037132_1303709604_o

Short Biography:

Christoph Fischer was born in Germany, near the Austrian border, as the son of a Sudeten-German father and a Bavarian mother. Not a full local in the eyes and ears of his peers he developed an ambiguous sense of belonging and home in Bavaria. He moved to Hamburg in pursuit of his studies and to lead a life of literary indulgence. After a few years he moved on to the UK where he now lives in a small hamlet, not far from Bath.  He and his partner have three Labradoodles to complete their family.

Christoph worked for the British Film Institute, in Libraries, Museums and for an airline. ‘The Luck of The Weissensteiners’ was published in November 2012; ‘Sebastian’ in May 2013 and The Black Eagle Inn in October 2013. “Time To Let Go” , his first contemporary work was published in May 2014, and “Conditions” in October 2014. His medical thriller “The Healer” was released in January 2015.

He has written several other novels which are in the later stages of editing and finalisation.

Website: http://www.christophfischerbooks.com/

Blog: http://writerchristophfischer.wordpress.com/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6590171.Christoph_Fischer

Amazon: http://ow.ly/BtveY

Twitter: https://twitter.com/CFFBooks

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/christophffisch/

Google +: https://plus.google.com/u/0/106213860775307052243

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=241333846

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/WriterChristophFischer?ref=hl

05 Nov 2014

A thought on Mental Health: Send a text!

Comments Off on A thought on Mental Health: Send a text! News

mental-health-13594173A few weeks ago the Uk held an awareness week for mental health. I was on the road and so sadly, I missed a lot of the programmes and activities that went with it. Me and my partner were mostly driving through British countryside but we were listening to the radio, and all stations had the same little adverts playing. 

Their message was refreshingly simple: Send a text!

I couldn’t agreee more. It can be that simple.

I’ve always felt inadequately equipped to ‘handle’ or ‘deal with’ friends with depression or other clinical conditions. I’m no expert, psychologist or nurse to feel like an ‘authority’ on the issue. For the same reason I was reluctant to release a book about the issue. Who was I to talk about it?

The thing is: I, you or anyone else, we don’t have to be an expert. All you need to do is something simple, like to send a text to show someone that you care. It may be all they need, to know that someone is thinking about them, that someone likes them and that someone cares. If you can be a closer friend, even better. Don’t think you have to be any different with mentally ill people, or ‘study’ to know the perfect way to handle every situation. I’m not saying that information can’t be advantageous, I’m saying that it isn’t as important as being nice, understanding and yourself – like I hope you are with the rest of us.

Who hasn’t felt down once in a while and then got a funny message from a friend or acquaintance that dragged them out of their misery, from their low and made them smile? It doesn’t have to be much more, yet it can make a massive difference. 

PhotoFunia-140626b7

If you read my book “Conditions” and expect the perfect solution how to deal with mental health, what you’ll find is very much the same. All of the characters in the book who are friends with my character Charles (who suffers from a mental disorder) have different approaches to him – some of which are better than others. But they are all friends in the best way that they can, and Charles appreciates that, and overlooks some of their character traits that aren’t the most likeable in turn. 

If you know someone who is prone to depression, autism or suffers from any other mental illness, think about making that simple gesture.

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Find the book FunPhotoBox1142911044zyytrv

On Facebook: http://ow.ly/C0ZqX

On Amazon: http://smarturl.it/CONDITIONSCFF

On Goodreads: http://ow.ly/C0Ziw

 

 

Connect with Christoph

Website: http://www.christophfischerbooks.com/

Blog: http://writerchristophfischer.wordpress.com/

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6590171.Christoph_Fischer

Amazon: http://ow.ly/BtveY

Twitter: https://twitter.com/CFFBooks

Pinterest: http://www.pinterest.com/christophffisch/ _DSF0534

Google +: https://plus.google.com/u/0/106213860775307052243

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/profile/view?id=241333846

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/WriterChristophFischer?ref=hl

Conditions

When Charles and Tony’s mother dies the estranged brothers must struggle to pick up the pieces, particularly so given that one of them is mentally challenged and the other bitter about his place within the family. The conflict is drawn out over materialistic issues, but there are other underlying problems which go to the heart of what it means to be part of a family which, in one way or another. has cast one aside. Prejudice, misconceptions and the human condition in all forms feature in this contemporary drama revolving around a group of people who attend the subsequent funeral at the British South Coast. Meet flamboyant gardener Charles, loner Simon, selfless psychic Elaine, narcissistic body-builder Edgar, Martha and her version of unconditional love and many others as they try to deal with the event and its aftermath.

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25 Aug 2013

Author Interview with Uvi Poznansky

1 Comment Book Reviews

Interview with

Uvi Poznansky

Author of
Apart From Love, A Favorite Son, Home, and Twisted me
Thank you for coming back to my blog for a proper chat this time.
What fascinates me most about you is that you write, make art and promote yourself. How do you find the time and how do you balance the three?
My pleasure, Christoph! And thank you so much for inviting me back here, it’s starting to feel like home…. Balancing is a fine act. Like so many of us I find it challenging. If only there were more hours in the day…
I don’t exactly ‘find’ time—rather, I ‘make’ time, striving to use every moment to its fullest potential. I am working with complete dedication, and those who know me best will attest to the fact that I can make a sharp and immediate transition, turning on a coin, from one form of my craft to another. Even so, I wish I could be cloned. But if that were true, every one of my clones would complain that she wishes to be cloned, too…
Tell us a little about your art.
In my art I seek to stretch the envelope and work in new mediums, with a fresh palette of colours and ideas each time. I delight in change, and hate being boxed in a technique I have already mastered. So I create clay models for my half-life size bronze sculptures—and at other times I engineer paper sculptures. I paint in oil and in watercolour, I draw in charcoal, I dabble in Photoshop, and even create computer animations. Any one of these projects may consume months at a time, and demand my complete attention—but for me, no form dominates over others. I move quite freely between them. You can find some of my art in my website.
Similarly, in my writing I take on different genres. I love writing novels as much as I do poetry, historical fiction, or fantasy, and I trust that there is a lot more still hidden in me… In fact it is difficult to define the genre of any one of my books, just as it it difficult to define the genre of life itself. It is a mixture of tears and laughter, a few lyrical moments, and a dash of fantasy…
I see from your biography that you also have had a very varied and busy working life. Did you write and make art at that time as well or is your creative streak only coming out now?
Ah! You’ve done your research… Yes, I have gone through several reincarnations in my professional career, working as an architect, going back to school for a Master degree in architecture, teaching, going back to school for a Master in computer science, then working in software engineering, with a focus on user interface for medical devices. All along I have been writing and painting—part time, of course.
In my work I have always found a way to turn my professional endeavours into something truly creative. But when my company, Philips Ultrasound, went out of business, and my designs for it never came to fruition, I decided I better focus exclusively on my projects, my art and writing, so as to ensure they come to life.
A lot of your writing is connected to biblical themes but you described yourself as agnostic in a comment on my blog.  Were you at any point in your life a believer?
I went to one of the best private schools in Israel, one that was modelled on a British system of education, where students wear uniform and rise to their feet to show respect, to greet the teacher. This is where I studied the bible. So for every sentence and phrase in the scriptures I know several shades of meaning, which is quite useful when I make a departure from the traditional interpretation. I see the bible as a great piece of literature, rather than as a sacred text. For me it is a great drama, rife with crime, sex and violence, a great backdrop for fascinating characters who are very much like us: flawed.  gen2
In one of your short stories your art work comes alive. Do you find many cross overs between your artistic channels?
This is like asking, do you have many crossovers between taking the world in through vision, hearing, or the sense of smell and touch? It all comes at you at once, doesn’t it? So, input through one channel invokes a sense of another, which is true of art, in all its forms. I write with my brush, and paint with my pen.
The story you refer to—‘I, Woman’—is told in the voice of a clay sculpture. I enjoy changing places: instead of me, the artist, looking at my sculpture, here is the sculpture looking at me. She is coming to life under my chisel. Later in the story she is about to be cast in bronze, which evokes the idea of death and rebirth in a different form:
“A big flame of fire flares up, engulfing me. I feel it in my veins, swelling in me like a flow of molten bronze. I hear it in the crackling of embers from below. That hazy glow of my earlier existence is finally here, burning brighter than ever. 
I am grateful to go back. No longer am I stuck here, in a place of doubt. 
No longer am I inflicted with sensing shadows. Ashes to ashes. Dust to dust. All my sorrows are about to melt away. In this inferno, nothing will be left behind me but an empty shell. I fly into the brilliance. I am ablaze. I am in bliss. For where I am going I shall be reborn.”
Have you ever started a story that then inspired you to make a sculpture (instead)?
Yes! I have written a poem called Dust, which you can find HERE.
It inspired me to create a series of sculptures, where the figures strike a different pose for each verse. You can turn these sculptures around by clicking their images.
In my mind I became a choreographer, and this was a dance: I could see the figures moving from one pose to another as they were uttering the words of the poem, talking back and forth between them, he said she said. Having sculpted them, one of the figures inspired the story ‘I, Woman’ (as I described earlier.) So the influences go freely in both ways between my art and my writing.
I feel truly blessed for the creative collaboration with gifted voice artists who narrated my books. Three of them—Twisted, A Favorite Son, and Apart From Love—are already available as audiobooks, and Home will come out very soon. I invite you to click the audiobook links and take a listen to the voice sample of each one.
genesis_d1
Links:
US Book Purchase Links:
TWISTED  ★ Audiobook ★ Ebook ★ Print ★
A FAVORITE SON  ★ Audiobook ★ Ebook ★ Print ★
APART FOM LOVE ★ Audiobook ★ Ebook ★ Print ★
HOME ★ Audiobook ★ Ebook ★ Print ★
UK Book Purchase Links:
TWISTED  ★ Audiobook ★ Ebook ★ Print ★
A FAVORITE SON  ★ Audiobook ★ Ebook ★ Print ★
APART FOM LOVE ★ Audiobook ★ Ebook ★ Print ★
HOME ★ Audiobook ★ Ebook ★ Print ★
twisted_front_cover_small home-front-2000 frontcover-titled2 frontcover3
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