Interview with Author Ken Magee – Ramona Portelli Blog

Interview with Author Ken Magee

Being Irish, Author Ken Magee writing is in his blood, and since childhood, his life has been steeped in folklore and fairy tales, laughter and music. Not surprising then that, he writes contemporary fantasies which blend adventure and humour with technology and magic. His books live under the tagline ‘Ancient Magic in the Modern World.

Before he made the time to write his novels, Ken Magee worked in the IT industry alongside serving in the Naval Reserve.

He loves reading, writing and words.  He also has a keen interest in rock music, technology, movies, travel and the strange things which can be found on the Internet.

Ramona: Tell me more about your latest book

Ken Magee: Dark Tidings is the first book of my funny fantasy trilogy. It takes a light-hearted look at what would happen if real magic was introduced into the twenty-first century—and the outcomes are not good for our civilization! There is also a more serious side to the stories which exposes a dark conspiracy and explains why the rich are getting richer at the expense of the poorer people. Here’s the Dark Tidings blurb…

A thousand years ago, Tung, a young thief, awaits his execution. Alone in a cold dark dungeon, all hope is gone… until Madrick, the disgraced royal wizard, is thrown into the dungeon with him.

Madrick reveals an incredible secret about a legendary spell, a spell which helps them escape their prison cell, and eventually their century.

As strangers lost in today’s modern world, the great spell is the only thing which keeps them alive. They think they are finally safe, until the fateful day when they meet Michael, a computer hacker who plans to destroy the world’s largest bank.

What happens when ancient magic meets the internet, and what if the horrors from a thousand years ago are waiting for the time-travellers in the present day? One thing is certain, with ancient magic brought from the past, modern life will never be the same again.

Dark Tidings was published recently, and I am currently working with Typewriter Pub on the final edit of The Black Conspiracy, book 2 of the trilogy. We’re hoping to publish it at the end of this year.

Ramona: What was the most challenging aspect of writing?

Ken Magee: Writer’s block in the form of my dogs, Rocky and Fletcher. Just when I hit a writing roll, they seem to sense it and demand attention. It’s usually easier to give in and go out for a walk and, to be fair, some of my best ideas come to me during the dog walks.

It’s also a challenge to keep my writing tight and relevant. I find sometimes I can waffle or get distracted by ‘plot bunnies’—those little beasts which take you off down deep rabbit holes or dead ends if you’re not careful. The first edit is key to removing any padding that’s crept in. You need to be ruthless and ensure that everything left is necessary to the story. As Mark Twain once said, “if only I had more time, I would write you a shorter letter”—I think that captures the point perfectly.

Ramona: What motivated you to become an author?

Ken Magee: I have always loved reading. My father, in particular, encouraged me and there were always shelves full of books in the house. I read voraciously, but often I was able to predict how stories were going to finish or I came up with what I thought were better endings. That made me think I should be writing my own stuff. I started with random scribblings and short stories, and then eventually I pushed myself to write full length novels.

Ramona: What brought you to write your books?

Ken Magee: My favourite reads feature funny fantasy adventures, particularly those set in the modern era. Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett are probably my favourite authors. I’m also fascinated by conspiracy theories, for example, theories about the Illuminati ruling the world, faked moon landings or who was really behind the assassination of JFK. Mash all that together with a long IT career and there you have it, the inspiration for my Ancient Magic in the Modern World trilogy.

Ramona: How many books have you written so far? List and name them all here

Ken Magee: I’ve written three books which make up the Ancient Magic in the Modern World trilogy. Typewriter Pub have published the first, Dark Tidings, and are working on the edits of the other two, The Black Conspiracy and A Darker Shade of Black.

I’ve also written a mini-book called Drogo Haylock. It follows the adventures of one of the characters we meet briefly in Dark Tidings. He’s the person who was changed into a chicken but escaped before being turned into a tasty stew!

Ramona: As a person, would you rather have an endless summer or an endless winter?

Ken Magee: Endless Summer. However, I love the change in seasons and living in Ireland, I can have all four seasons’ weather in the space of a day!

Ramona: Writing can be an emotionally draining and stressful pursuit.  Any tips for aspiring writers?

Ken Magee: Read as much as you can and learn from the authors you love. Reading is fantastic for relaxing a stressed brain and, as a by-product, it’s the perfect way to study the craft of writing.

Visit Ken Magee book links:-

Dark Tidings:

Drogo Haylock:


Twitter: @KenMageeAuthor

Email: [email protected]



  1. Ken Magee says:

    Thanks for doing this, Ramona, it was great fun. Ken.

    1. Ramona Portelli says:

      very welcome – thanks for trusting me

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