Writer

If I’m not writing, I’m thinking about writing. And if I’m not thinking about it, I’m probably not thinking at all.

ben caleb rose, thinking about writing

Ben is coming off the end of a Creative Writing BA (Hons) degree at Arts University Bournemouth, where – having entered as a writer of fantasy fiction and songs – he has explored, grown confident, and fallen in love with many other forms of writing – from memoir, to screenwriting, to copy. During, and alongside, his degree, Ben has written (and started submitting to literary agencies) a fantasy novel, Beneath the Surface: The Shekinah Children. 

Since then, he has thrown himself deep into two other projects: another fantasy novel, and a memoir-and-advice book he calls “9 months, my arse.”. Alongside his current projects, Ben constantly adds to his repertoire of country/pop songs, and is always looking for more work in copywriting.

Current projects include:

The Shekinah Children:
A fantasy novel of 80,000 words and first of a series: ‘Beneath the Surface’ – wherein a historical real word is merged with a pirate/medieval-fantasy world via the premise of a hollow Earth. News of a dragon hatching ignites a race between a circus ship, an empire, and an ape-like race – all while we watch a gambling archer get lost in the jungle with the newly hatched dragon. **Currently submitting to agencies.

9 months, my arse:
A memoir-and-advice about extreme-premature birth, grief, and facing life after loss. It tells Ben’s story, wherein he recounts the experiences he shared with his partner and reflects on them, including chapters, such as “I picture it like circles.”, “A sense of permanence.”, and “My counselling diary.”**Currently writing; supported by the charity, SSNAP.

Book & series title TBC:
Another novel/series set in the same fantasy world as ‘The Shekinah Children’, taking place long after the events of the original series/premise in a more a more medieval, post-apocalyptic setting. It follows the Bulwark family as their hometown, Fallowfield, suffers from a number of deaths-by-disease. Protagonists, Timber and Angelica, get caught in a plot, revealing the truth behind the mystery plague. **Currently writing.

The door opens and the cold returns; the stranger now stands a silhouette against the backdrop of a bustling street. “In the meantime,” he says, “I suggest you get reading.”

‘THE SHEKINAH CHILDREN’

It’s simple: Ben loves to write. To play God and escape to a fantasy world. To recount and reflect in the form of non-fiction. To do the bidding of others in copy. Heck, he’ll even tell you himself: “There’s nothing better than a slick, well-written email.”

Ben is a creative writer of all sorts: fiction, non-fiction, songs. Copy, too.

Keep scrolling down to find examples of Ben’s writing.

From fiction to memoir, copy to lyrics.

There’ll be flash-fiction too.

Alternatively, contact Ben directly.

He will happily send you examples, and/or discuss ideas,
regarding anything you might need.

Let the examples begin.

ben, addressing his hypothetical audience (you)

Example #1: fantasy fiction

An extract from UntitledChapter One: Fear for the Folk of Fallowfield

Hammurabbi removed a cup from a hook above the kitchen counter. In front of him, a blue flame kept a coffee pot warm – forever at the optimum drinking temperature. With a parched lick of the lips, he poured himself a cup of the fine brew. “You did well coming to me, girl.” As he spoke, he joined the child at the table in the centre of his cluttered caravan and continued: “From what you’re saying, this old man of yours needs to keep away from those stinking greens.”

“Right.” With her hood down, her knotted hair fell in a scramble of champagne locks, intertwined with old ribbons and small clumps of mud.

“Merciful dragons,” Hammurabbi cursed under his breath, rising from his stall – all too soon after planting his arse on it. Rummaging through a nearby cupboard, he continued to curse under his breath: “Bleedin’, pointy-eared, good-for-nothin’ gree…”

He clicked his fingers and cheered. “Ha!”

Meanwhile, the young girl watched the old apothecary curiously. “My name’s Angelica, by the way.” 

Hammurabbi, holding a small leather pouch, turned to face the child. “Huh?”

“My name,” Angelica said with innocent wit, “you should know the names of your customers.”

The apothecary’s bushy eyebrows dropped in a frown.

Angelica smiled: “For your records. What if someone fools you, you know?”

Hammurabbi returned to his stall, placing the pouch on the table. “This is the stuff you want,” he said, sliding it to her and ignoring the child’s observation. “When a family gets sick,” he continued, “the individuals only spot the symptoms on others. Not themselves.”

Angelica retrieved the pouch.

“And girl.” The apothecary raised an eyebrow as he sipped his coffee. “Sometimes the sick only single out one of their herd… a scapegoat, let’s say. It’s a self-preservation, denial kind ‘a thing.” He sipped his coffee once more, proceeding to exhale as he placed the cup on its saucer.

“I only came for medicine, Mister Apothecary. Not some lesson on goats.”

“Well,” Hammurabbi chuckled at the child’s tongue, “your father best thank you for his imminent healing.”

Angelica shrugged. “I’m just following instructions.” She rose from her chair.

“I see.” The old man nodded to the door. “Let’s hope your instructor is thanked then, shall we?”

“My father’s sick, remember.” The child walked toward the exit.

“Aren’t we all?” Hammurabbi whispered, his gaze lingering on the rocking chair that had not long offered him peace.

Angelica opened the door and stepped outside. “Come on, Noah. Mum wants some of Mister Loft’s bread to go with dinner.”

Her shaggy hound was absent.

“Noah?” the girl called, “Noah?”

“I’m definitely having contractions.” Not good. Not good at all. And with the next contraction came the curse:

“F*ck, my waters.”

‘9 months, my arse’

Example #2: memoir

‘The Last Supper’ – a short chapter from ‘9 months, my arse’

All was right with the world.

Gemma, looking like her usual self (only, with a small balloon tucked up her top), and I stepped through the door, turned the lights on, and sighed: “Ah, home.” It had been a long day. Gemma had spent it with her work as they attended lectures at Monkey World, while I had found a stream for the 3 o’clock kick-off – naughty, I know. Come the evening, our days came together and we visited my parents.

I could not tell you what we did once we walked through our front door that evening.

Neither could I tell you what we had for dinner.

Or what time we hit the pillow.

After everything I’m about to relay to you, there is no surprise one simply cannot remember.

The important thing to note is: all was normal. Well, when I say ‘normal’, I mean: there was nothing to be concerned about. Yes, Gemma was finding the occasional red when wiping after a wee. But we were told this was OK – as were all things that we had called the maternity line about. It came to be that, during the months Gem was pregnant, our concept of normality became incredibly different to what we were accustomed to.

When we went to sleep later that night, we were expecting nothing more than to wake up to just another Sunday. Perhaps we’d have pancakes for breakfast. Perhaps a coffee and tea would follow. Perhaps we would feel guilty for the consumption of unhealthy food and take a stroll to the beach.

Perhaps we should have pondered on all the possibilities a day can bring.

Perhaps we could have considered the following tale.

Perhaps we would have been surprised all the same.

All these ‘perhaps’es when, truth be told, there is – and was – nothing to ‘perhaps’ about. Frankly, nothing would have prepared us for the bloody Sunday that followed.

Example #3: copy

Brand name, logo, and slogan; the briefing went a little like:

“A creative writing course? Let me borrow your creative mind then.”

I leaned back in my chair. Bournemouth University were simply advertising The Samaritans. I was not expecting a job opportunity from one of them too.

“My daughter is starting a dog-walking business. And she needs a name. Can you think of one?”

A couple days later, taking a 20-minute break between writing my fantasy fiction and my memoir, I boiled the kettle, poured a coffee, dunked a bourbon biscuit. And opened Adobe Photoshop.

20 minutes later, I offered this new dog-walking business a name, logo, and slogan.

Let’s take a break from examples: what writing has inspired Ben’s own work?

“I share a love-hate relationship with reading; I’ll admire what other people create, only to envy them: ‘Why can’t I do that? A pep-talk will follow… every writer is different. You’re not them; they’re not you.”

Ben’s world-building in his fantasy fiction is inspired by books, such as ‘The Hiram Key’ and ‘Before the Pyramids’, where Christopher Knight, Alan Butler, and Robert Lomas investigate early civilisation, and ‘The Smoky God’, which tells a tale of a boat that sails inside of the Hollow Earth. His fantasy storytelling, however, comes from a combination of: ‘The Book Thief’, ‘Vampirates’, and ‘Northern Lights’.

Meanwhile, Ben’s introduction and love of non-fiction comes from reading ‘The Sex Lives of Cannibals’ and ‘The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari’. However, he has developed his ideologies, discussed in ‘9 months, my arse’ and used to create and develop characters, by reading books, such as ‘The Book You Wish Your Parents Had Read and Your Children Will Be Glad You Did’ and ‘Adult Children; The Secrets of Dysfunctional Families’.

During one of Ben’s first copywriting lectures, he ordered – and his now thankful for it – the book: ‘Ogilvy on Advertising’. And, when it comes to music and lyrics, Ben will always have artists, such as Alex Band and Hunter Hayes, at his core. The latter’s album, ‘Wild Blue’, has played a huge part in Ben’s more recent works.

Lastly, it should be said that Ben keeps ‘The Elements of Style’ close too – as quoted earlier, “Who doesn’t love a slick, well-written email?” Without knowing the rules, you can’t break them. (Like using brackets outside of a sentence)

Through writing you can channel anything you need to help keep you moving forward.

‘9 months, my arse’

Example #4: non-fiction & lyrics

An extract from ‘9 months, my arse’ – featuring the lyrics for ‘To You, Our Son’

And thirdly, one song found its way to completion and into the studio:

I am writing this song for you,
In case you can hear me, ‘cause I’ve got a date for you to,
Pencil in,
So you can be there as Papa Bear walks your…

Mamma down the aisle,
While your daddy’s heart runs wild,
And a ballad sings a song,
And our vows,
Say as long as time,
Keeps carrying on,
And carries us on,
Back, back to you our son.

So, boy, remember twenty-two o’ five,
‘Cause I want you to know you’re still a part of this ride,
You set us on,
So, will you be there as Papa Bear walks your…

[Chorus]

In case I have not…
Said thank you, or I love you,
Or I cannot be prouder of you,
Or I will carry you right where you laid your head,
Enough.

Well, this is thank you, and I love you,
And I cannot be prouder of you,
And I will carry you right where you laid your head,
For the rest of time.

Starting with your,
Mamma down the aisle,
Making my heart run wild,
And our vows will say it true,
That we’ll come back, back to you,
But there are things we’ve got to do first,
Before we join you in the universe.

This song said everything I wanted to say at the time: in one set of lyrics, I am talking to Elijah-James while addressing the fact that Gemma and I had a wedding to look forward to and, though Elijah would not be there as planned, he would still be there with us – literally, as we carry his ashes in our necklaces (yet another form of our channelling), but emotionally too. And then, in the bridge (beginning with ‘In case I have not…’ and ending ‘For the rest of time’), I wanted to acknowledge how I felt there was still more to say to Elijah. As he passed away in our laps, I said to him: “I’ll talk to you from time to time.” However, since then, I haven’t done much talking. If I’m perfectly honest, I still don’t talk to him enough now.

Example #5: flash fiction

‘The First of the Famous Hangover Cures’

This is exactly what I need after a long night of pint after pint. Memories return in a blur as I sit down and sigh. This feels good. Of course it does. I’m about to proceed with the first of the famous hangover cures. 

And the kettle is on.

Relief hits me at the presence of the dark substance. Steam rises and strokes my cheeks.

Its warm scent hits my nose. 

I take my time, savouring the cure.

Tissue dabs my steamed cheeks. Then cleans any spillages. One more sigh and I’m back on my feet. A swift move of the hand and I flush the chain, leaving the cure behind me. 

Off to the kettle I go.

And so the second hangover cure begins.

Two more examples (#6 & #7): lyrics & flash fiction

‘Write a Country Song’

When I’m feeling low,
And I don’t know where to go,
When I am all alone,
I write a country song.
When I’m out with my friends,
Tryin’ to drink to make my heart mend,
And I stumble through that door,
I write some more.

I play a few chords and sing a few words,
And I’m home. Yeah, I’m home.
I let out all the hurt until the notes fall low,
I’m home.

When it’s getting late,
But I am wide awake,
‘Cause this heart still aches,
I write a country song.

[Chorus]

When a new day comes,
To bring the sun,
I celebrate,
With that song from yesterday.

[Chorus]

It clicks as you twist, splitting the ball in half. It is hollow. The stranger points to the inside of the ball. “We call our world the Innerworld.”

‘THE SHEKINAH CHILDREN’

‘Free Men’

I surrender.

As I said those words, I thought I had lost my freedom.

They took me and tied me, dragged me away. Left me here, sat waiting for my indefinite hell of a new life. All because I was born within particular borders, forced to follow a particular man. Truth is, I had lost my freedom a long time ago.

The men watching me – there were two; the way they spoke, and laughed, and slapped their thighs. They were comrades with a bond. Friends, sharing a bottle of whiskey – drinking as brothers! It made me think of all the people I had lost along the way. They wouldn’t laugh again. So, how could I? How could these men? Was a drop of whiskey all it took? 

I couldn’t understand their tongue. Nor the order that their officer gave them. All I noticed was his finger pointing at me as he barked. But as he left, the men did not come to me with cuffs or chains. They came with whiskey.

“Drink!” they said – as if I could understand them. It’s funny. I remember thinking: I bet they’re telling me to drown, the filthy Kraut.

“Drink,” they said, holding the bottle closer.

“Drink?” This time, it was me who spoke. If I didn’t understand the word’s meaning at that moment, I did the moment after.

The bottle met my lips. Whiskey rolled over my tongue, ran down my throat. My thirst, my taste buds, they were all I could focus on.

I hardly heard the two men cheer.  They pulled the bottle away.

I said my word, “Getränke.”

They smiled.

I smiled.

“Drink,” they said.

It didn’t feel like long – although I remember both sun and moon. We drank more than just the one bottle of whiskey! When they cheered, I did too. When I laughed, so did they. By the end, the two men were laying on their backs. I was taken away. Their chuckling faded. The happiness ceased.

But I will always remember that moment: the one where the war ended and three men became free men. For that, I will always be grateful for the words: I surrender. They had given me my freedom.

Writing can consume you. Distractions, reminders that we’re part of a ‘real’ world, are more than welcome: they’re needed.

Ben, addressing his hypothetical audience & reminder of the ‘real’ world (you)

Find Ben Caleb Rose on social media:

You can find Ben on most social medias as ‘Ben Caleb Rose’. See below for a list of links.

Facebook: click here

Instagram: click here

Twitter: click here

YouTube: click here

LinkedIn: click here

Contact Ben and offer him a distraction.

T: +44 (0) 7790606966
E: calebcreative@mail.com

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