Tally Pendragon

Writer in Bury Saint Edmunds, United Kingdom

Tally Pendragon

Writer in Bury Saint Edmunds, United Kingdom

Read my blog

Me? I'm a Medieval Archaeologist and Historian who writes novels. When I discuss what in particular I like to study, most people glaze over long before I get to specifics, so I don't usually get a chance to continue. And they never get to hear that, in spite of my hard won credentials and continued research, since I collapsed of exhaustion while working as a Medieval Archaeologist at Prague Castle, I haven't actually been working in the field for almost two decades now. I've taught courses in Anglo-Saxon Studies for Cambridge University's Madingley College since then, but I don't do that now either, as the condition that developed from the collapse eventually put paid to that as well. Archaeology's loss is hopefully the reading public's gain, since I now have the time to devote to providing them with books written about it instead of doing it.

I have a string of unfinished novels littering up my filing trays! I used to imagine that the phenomenon of "being published" was something that would magically come and find me: a clamouring agent wringing from me my soul’s most beautiful music; I’m affecting an attitude of feigned surprise and benign acceptance, as the book into which I’ve poured three years of determined grit and sacrifice is getting the fairy godmother treatment and instantly transforming itself into fame, riches and happy-ever-after.

Needless to say, this certainly did NOT happen when, on my 40th birthday, I completed my book "Worlds Without End". I classified it as a novel, a work of fiction, but the only bit that is fiction is my heroine's trip to the last night of the Broadstairs Folk Show at the end of chapter five: as the torchlight procession winds up at the cliff-top Esplanade in front of Morellis Ice Cream Parlour, the very pagan dragon cavorting in and out of a tangle of Morris Men, gets well and truly baptised by a water-filled prophylactic which bursts over its head, and Eartha belts out Amazing Grace into the ensuing silence!

The salient point here is that there is no easy ride for published authors these days, if there ever was. We now have to work as hard to market and promote our work as we do to produce it! A brain that produces fine literature is unlikely to be as good at these things without first traversing a very steep learning curve. My trajectory is still stuck in the foothills, but I am at least aware that I need one now. That’s a pretty good start … stay tuned!

  • Work
    • At Home
  • Education
    • BA and MA from University College, London