A new release by fantasy author Ian O’Neill looks set to be a success with the younger audience. The Time Traveller’s Assistant is Dunstable-born Ian’s very first circulated fantasy book, Ian said: “I’ve lost count of the number of company conferences I’ve been in where I disappear into some dream world or work out a plan for a fresh idea.” So I thought it was about time I put some of these unusual concepts into print.I grew up in the 1960s and was brought up on Doctor Who and yes I did watch the Daleks hiding behind the settee. But it was unmissable TV and it fostered a prolonged love affair with time travel. Ian started off writing for a pastime around five years ago. The sales person, who works for a Lincoln-based technology firm, had always dreamed of seeing his efforts in print and it was his wife Carole who in the end persuaded Ian to self publish his newest book. Ian said: “My wife read the fantasy book and said you have to get this published.”
A little bit of money, which was left to Ian after the passing of his Mother, funded the venture. And he used a publishing company in Milton Keynes to turn his dream into a reality. The Time Traveller’s Assistant is targeted at the 9-12 age groups and revolves around the everyday life of Jimmy First, a 14-year-old boy, who has cerebral palsy. Existence is pretty mean to Jimmy until he befriends Henry Crumble, the proprietor of a watch repair shop. After the meeting, Jimmy discovers that Henry has a hidden secret and the mission to discover what this is leads to Jimmy going on the most incredible journey – one that takes him into the future towards an intriguing appointment with destiny.Ian stated: “The publication definitely has a feel good aspect to it. The upstart is that the main character Jimmy realises that his cerebral palsy is a part of him, not all of him. “He finds this as his voyage takes him into the future which enables him to look back at his existence.”
As a result of his research into writing the publication he met the boss of the cerebral palsy centre in Flitwick, Sally Aspinall. She was full of praise for Ian’s work and said it was a great book. The friendship has now led to Ian promising to donate 50 per cent of the profits of the sale of each publication to the centre.