‘Apocalyptic book was worth the ten-year wait’, says debut author

Wakefield-born John Ashton is the author of fantasy novel Crystal Castle.
Wakefield-born John Ashton is the author of fantasy novel Crystal Castle.

A decade’s wait has paid off for a first-time author.

John D Ashton, 34, of Lupset Park, originally had the idea for his fantasy novel back in 2006 but shelved the idea after penning just the first few pages.

But ten years on he revisited it and has now completed his debut book, Crystal Castle.

Mr Ashton said: “The general idea of the story began back in August 2006, but I shelved the idea after writing only a handful of pages. Fast-forward an entire decade and I decided that it was perfect time to resurrect the story and complete it, while I was taking time out travelling around the UK and Europe with my girlfriend.”

The self-published book came out as a Kindle download in October and was followed by the paperback version.

The proud author said: “It’s hard to narrow the genre down beyond ‘fantasy’ as there is so much happening. It has a run-down, apocalyptic western feel throughout. A lot of things are only hinted at throughout the novel, which was always a conscious decision of mine, leaving the readers to use their imaginations to colour in the rest.”

Mr Ashton has had plenty of positive feedback for his fast-paced story. A few have said it would translate well to the big screen.

He added: “I’m very pleased of my achievement. Every time I pick up a copy of the book I feel proud, even just glancing at the artwork brings me joy. People often ask me where do my ideas come from. If I honestly knew the answer to that, I would have written more books by now. But I’m just over half-way through my second novel, a dark murder drama with a supernatural element.”