Monday, 2 September 2013

Sean-Paul Thomas: The Universe Doesn't Do Second Chances

Please help me welcome Sean-Paul Thomas to Heart of Fiction.

Born to Scottish and Irish parents, Sean-Paul spent his youth traveling Europe with his parents as an Army brat. He spent travel time reading and exploring, and as a result, developed a keen interest in writing about his surroundings, all of which he still enjoys today. In fact, as we speak, Sean-Paul is spending a few weeks in Romania.

While The Universe Doesn't Do Second Chances is not Sean-Paul's debut book, it is his first with Tirgearr Publishing.

The Universe Doesn't Do Second Chances is a heartbreaking yet endearing tale of love. This book crosses many genres so it's difficult to pin down just one. It includes a bit of romance, a bit of comedy and tragedy, a bit of fictional memoir, and more.

It may seem odd for a man to write romance, but for Sean-Paul, bringing out the emotions in his characters seems as natural as breathing. Readers will quickly be pulled into this story and want to keep reading until the end.

The Universe Doesn't Do Second Chances is the story of a 30something man who's lived a lonely life. He's not a ladies man by any stretch of the imagination. He's shy, reserved, and afraid to take chances because he doesn't want the embarrassment of being pushed away or of failing. When he boards a plane in Paris, bound for his hometown of Edinburgh, Scotland, Liam's life is about to change. It's not a spoiler to say this flight is going down. It's the story of what happens to Liam in that split second before the crash that will grip your heart.

I'll just say, you gotta read this story.

Sean-Paul is a traveling man, as I mentioned above, he's currently on holidays in Romania, but before he left, we had a brief chat with him.

Welcome to Heart of Fiction, Sean-Paul. We've caught you between journey's. You're just back from Granada and now you're in Romania. We're all envious here, I can tell you! Thanks for taking time out of your schedule to chat with us. Let's dive right in --

With so much going on in your life, work and travel and such, how do you fit in writing. Do you have a routine?

It can sometimes be really hard to get into a writing routine. First I need to get all plumbing jobs/duties out of the way. It's impossible for me to write while in the middle of a bathroom job. My mind just can't relax - (Men and two things at once and all that :) ) When I do find time to write, I'll usually get up around 8am, have a coffee, check all e-mails, surf the net, do some light exercise, shower, breakfast, read the last chapter I was working on, then just write...anything...and see what happens.

If you're like most writers I know, you probably get sudden bursts of inspiration while in the middle of your day job -- the most inconvenient time for it.

When you do have time to settle into a routine, where do you settle? Do you have a particular writing space?

An old brown wooden desk inside my second floor Georgian flat bedroom in Edinburgh lol It's spacious, with gorgeous views over southern old Edinburgh town, looking towards the Salisbury Crags and Arthur's Seat. The socially buzzing Edinburgh meadows is only a five minute walk from my street. A few years back I bought a second hand swivel arm chair since I really need to be sitting comfortably while writing. So of course I love this chair to bits.

Upon my desk you will always find my small netbook laptop, an empty coffee cup, half full tea cup (with tea bag still intact), empty red wine glass from the night before, spare random cables - which I have no idea what they are used for, a wrist strap (sometimes my wrist gets sore from writing or surfing the net) Foreign coin collection stored inside an old Nescafe jar, sunglasses (which I sometimes use when the glare of my computer screen becomes too much for my sensitive eyes), my Kindle for reading breaks, and a poetry diary, where I write the odd poem or two whenever the inspiration to do so comes to me.

I'm impressed . . . a poetry diary! Now we understand more where the sensitivity comes from to write a book like The Universe Doesn't Do Second Chances.

What do you enjoy doing when you're not writing?

I love travelling more than anything. Whether it's heading to a new place I've never heard of or been too before, in Scotland (or UK) or venturing off around Europe, I love it. I've made so many friends just randomly travelling around Europe that I very rarely have to book a  hotel/hostel anymore. I can usually find a couch or floor somewhere through friends or friends of friends somewhere in the country I'm travelling to. lol

Otherwise, hobbies are reading, hiking, history, rugby, food, diet, cooking, working out, meeting friends and enjoying Edinburgh.

Those are all great things to inspire writing. Not that Edinburgh alone isn't inspirational enough.

If you had one wish, what would it be?

If I had one wish, it would to be able to support myself forever, just traveling the world and writing.

Your wish and many others, no doubt!

Thank you for taking time to have a chat with us and letting our readers know more about you. Safe journeys to you!

Now, let's get to that extract of The Universe Doesn't Do Second Chances --

• • •

A lonely man in his late thirties living an average life of missed opportunities and regrets especially regarding the opposite sex, dies in a plane crash somewhere over the English channel. When he awakens in a subdued and bizarre subconscious state, he is granted by the powers that be, one chance to spend a day with the two women in his life who made an impact on his heart, yet he never had the courage to let go of his fears and act upon his instincts and desires at the time of meeting them.

Paris Charles de Gaulle - 2013

For as long as I could remember I was never really that great with women. Actually, this is not entirely true. I was good with chatting to, chatting up, chatting with, socialising and interacting with women who already liked me and had already been introduced through a third party or mutual friend. Either through clubs, parties, social gatherings or even introduced via my own sister on a few odd occasions. (My sister is a nurse, so some wild nights out with her and her crazy co-workers have been my saving grace more than once in the past.) But it was just when it came to meeting the women whom I truly desired, wanted to get to know and mulled over from afar, they were my stumbling blocks.

You know those particular stand out beauties you see once in a blue moon walking by themselves down the high street on a Saturday afternoon or sitting on a park bench all alone during their lunch break in the middle of summer, who immediately catch your eye, looking utterly bored out of their minds and just begging for some single handsome stranger to come and distract them away for twenty minutes or so from their mundane and repetitive daily worlds. That special girl who right away tugged so hard on your heart strings that your blood turned to ice and your soul melted to its very core because you knew she was completely your type without even having spoken to her. All you had to go on was a gut feeling and that special crazy something about her that spoke to every inch of your fibre and being and said this girl is the one for you, my friend, if you would only step up to the damn plate, put all your fears of public rejection, humiliation and inhibitions behind you and gather the courage, will power and determination to go and get her. That rare, radiant and beautiful Angel who caught a glimpse of you, too, and smiled back at you in turn while you were within their proximity but, alas, you had absolutely nothing to say to them in that moment. Nothing. No simple magic words, no charming chat up line, just a blank frozen mind and a stuttering tongue. But in reality, just to say one word, utter one stupid, tiny, silly little insignificant syllable would surely have been a million times better than saying nothing at all and living a life full of regret of not acting in the moment. And then poof, just like that, she's gone forever, out of sight, but never out of your mind.

Before you know it you're spending the next few miserable weeks and months thinking about her constantly. Dreaming what might have been and reminiscing over and over again that split second opportunity when you glanced, she glanced, then she smiled and you returned the smile, too, and could've actually done something about it before it slipped through your fingers in a nervous, panic stricken state of hesitation. Better to have tried and failed than to have never tried at all. Whoever came up with that phrase I wanted his greasy head on a silver platter.

Yes, my life was full of these deep lingering regrets and split second hesitant missed chances, especially with the women I desired. So it actually came as no surprise at all to get one more of those rare opportunities shortly before my death at thirty nine years of age.

• • •
Born in London to Scottish and Irish parents, Sean-Paul spent most of his childhood and teenage years growing up on the move in the likes of Cyprus, Germany, Wales and England as an army brat. With a keen interest in both reading and writing he was diagnosed with the travel and writing bugs very early on in life.

Now, writing, reading and traveling are his main passions in life, but he also loves outdoor sports too from Rugby and Hiking to Tennis and Boxing.

His main inspiration for writing today comes from living in such a beautiful, Gothic, hauntingly, awe inspiring, dramatic and historical city such as Edinburgh. This place has given Paul so much amazing inspiration to write the more time he spends dwelling here with her. And he challenges anyone with 'so called' writers block to take a walk up and around the magical Carlton hill in Edinburgh's city center sometime. (In any kind of weather too, which will usually be a windy rain storm even in the heart of summer) Then just kick back, relax and enjoy the majestically views of our glorious castle, Princes Street Gardens, the bridges, the breathtaking and spectacular volcanic Munroe 'Arthur's Seat', The River Fourth, the Greek influenced national monument on the very top of the hill (which is where Edinburgh gets its nickname 'Athens of the North' from.) And of course the view of the fabulously Gothic monument of Sir Walter Scott, Scotland's greatest and most famous writer to date.

Find Sean-Paul online --

-- > Sean-Paul is giving away a copy of The Universe Doesn't Do Second Chances to one lucky commenter. Leave him a question or comment here with your email address to be automatically in the draw.

Or you can grab a copy of The Universe Doesn't Do Second Chances now for just $4.49 through Tirgearr Publishing.



  1. Welcome, Sean-Paul, to Heart of Fiction, and best of luck with The Universe Doesn't Do Second Chances. I really enjoyed reading this one, and I wondered where you got the idea for this one? I know you travel a lot. Did you have an experience like this one?

  2. Thanks for the kind words Kemberlee, and of course thanks for all your help with the book so far. I'm writing this message from Bucharest right now, after recently returning to the city from a 5 day jaunt around Transylvania, which was really awesome and inspiring. Maybe I will even write a book based here one day. Yes, the story set in Edinburgh is loosely based on a true story, but it also contains bits and pieces from other people and personalities I've met over the years. So I guess you could say that the main characters from the first part are made up from half or dozen or so various people I've met throughout my life.