We are pleased to announce the winning authors of the Electric Eclectic Novella Fiction Prize.
The levels of entries were outstanding. Our judges, who ‘blind-read’ each manuscript had a most difficult task in selecting the winners.
After much lip chewing, hair pulling, and brainstorming we managed to select a shortlist, and then whittle the submissions down to the final three.
1st Place, Stevie Turner with, ‘Scam!’
Runner-up, Jonathan Koven, with, ‘Below Torrential Hill’
Runner-up, Phillip T Stephens with, ‘Doublemint Gumshoe’
The above stories are now in the process of becoming Electric Eclectic books.
Lauren West and Ben Hughes are saving frantically for their forthcoming marriage and mortgage deposit. When Lauren sees an advert online from a firm of brokers extolling the profits to be gained by buying and selling Bitcoins, she is interested enough to pursue it further.
Lauren clicks on the advert. She is soon contacted by Paul Cash, a knowledgeable stockbroker whom Lauren trusts straight away. He is affable, plausible, and seemingly genuinely interested in her welfare. Lauren looks forward to making enough money to be able to surprise Ben and bring the date of their wedding forward and to put a deposit down on their ideal house.
However, things don’t go quite to plan, as Lauren falls victim to a scam and loses £10,000 of their savings. Ben is furious. Paul Cash threatens their safety, and Lauren must try and get her marriage back on an even footing if she wants to win back Ben’s trust.
(To be published by Crimson Cloak Publishing for Electric Eclectic)
Below Torrential Hill
Tristen’s abusive father dies when Tristan is young: a suicide. Tristen’s mother, Lucy, copes with alcohol, occasionally violent. Tristen grows up, ignorant to his father’s abuse, substituting for an ill-equipped mother. Stepfather Lave moves out.
When Tristen is sixteen years old. A comet appears.
Lucy hears voices calling from the sink. Tristen steals his mother’s wine and leaves to a neighbourhood party, blacks-out, and argues with his friend Ava.
He chops a Christmas tree in the woods which his father frequented. After a disastrous visit from his stepfather, an argument ensues, and Tristen is assaulted by his mother.
Tristen gets far too drunk, scaring Ava. She manages to calm his temper and gifts him a marijuana joint.
Lucy discovers Tristen’s theft and reveals to him his father’s abuse, asking him to help her.
But he runs into the woods, falling off a cliff, just as his late father did. Tristen discovers a fallen meteorite. When he touches it, he experiences an epiphany about forgiveness.
Doublemint Gumshoe pits the world’s dimmest detective against its most advanced AI.
When a nano robotics engineer who moonlights as a nude model vanishes from her hotel room leaving nothing but empty gum wrappers, Detective Bob takes the case. But Bob has never closed a case in his long career, and the citizens of San Noema conspire to stop him from solving this one.
Pitted against a dying mob boss, a corporation with wide-reaching tentacles, a ruthless cyber gang, his own family (whose nepotism secured his job), a jealous girlfriend, aliens, competing narrators, and possibly an evil AI from the future, Bob is determined to find the missing girl who has captured his heart, and do it in fewer than 30,000 words. Gumshoe takes readers on a supercollider ride, sending up Thomas Pynchon, Kurt Vonnegut, conspiracy theories, postmodernism, and even the movie Chinatown.
All of us here, at Electric Eclectic, congratulate the competition winners and eagerly await the publication of their books.
You can find more Electric Eclectic books by simply typing ‘Electric Eclectic Books’ into your Amazon search bar, or by visiting @open24, the amazon store for readers & writers, http://bit.ly/EEbooksonOPEN24
The Electric Eclectic Novella Fiction Prize opened for submissions back in February 2020, just before Covid interrupted our lives.
The pandemic delayed the judging by a few weeks but now can now reveal the titles and authors who have made the shortlist.
The following manuscripts are now with Crimson Cloak Publishing of Missouri, USA who will be selecting the winning entry, while Electric Eclectic are choosing the two runners up.
The shortlist is as follows, (in no particular order)
Jenifer Dunkle with ‘Aunt June’
Jonathan Kovenwith ‘Below Torrential Hill’
Kaare Troelsen with ‘Equilibrium’
Philip T Stephenswith ‘Doublemint Gumshoe’
Stevie Turnerwith ‘Scam!’
Wesley Britton with ‘The Wayward Missiles – A Beta-Earth Chronicles story’
Wilma Hayeswith ‘Power of Women’
Providing we have no further setbacks, lockdowns, etc. Electric Eclectic plans to announce the winners late May 2021.
While you are awaiting the final results, why not grab yourself a copy of an Electric Eclectic book and enjoy the read; you can find Electric Eclectic books by simply entering ‘Electric Eclectic books‘ into your Amazon search bar.
I first published this post, or a version of it, back in 2015 on my blog, ‘Ramblings from a Writers Mind‘. I share it here today because… well, read on, it is self-elucidating.
Ex Libris Legatum
As we age we amass many life skills; some taught to us by teachers, lecturers, professors, our parents and some self-learned by patient practice and repetition.
Many lessons are simply and, often unexpectedly, thrust into our consciousness by the events of living and from life itself, love, passion, loss, hurt, births, pain, grief and death.
At some point, during the period betwixt being born and gasping our last breath, we have also, hopefully, gained some wisdom.
Although, only too often, such wisdom is realised and recognised far too late in life for us to use it in any true and meaningful way for any length of time, such is the cruel nature of growing older.
However, for those who manage to avoid a premature departure from this world, those who never got hit by lightning or run over by that proverbial trolley bus, we become, in some respects, like a soggy sponge.
Yes we droop, our bodies are dragged ‘south’ by the constant pull of gravity and some people uncontrollably leak and dribble I am sure, but the analogy I was trying to draw was one of absorption and storage, the soaking-up and retention of knowledge.
I know, for a fact, I know more than I know I know, even if in that knowledge there is the realisation of knowing that one knows nothing.
With that stated clearly, I will return to the train of thought which initiated my fingers to start tapping away today; that is, within these southerly wiltings, the rather wrinkly, fading bodies which those ‘of a certain age’ seem to acquire, are still our sprightly, lively young minds which have seldom aged beyond fifteen… or maybe sixteen.
Now… these minds of ours need a little control. You see, our minds tend to fool us by considering whatever they think we, (those of us who are over 50 something) still have the physical ability to achieve such things as skateboarding, zip-lining, mountaineering and even imbibing in large quantities of alcoholic beverages and waking in the morning with a clear head… hummph… I wish.
The reason our minds ignore our creaking joints, throbbing tendons and our scar tissues, (which pull as taught as an elastic band every time we move like this… ouch… I should not have done that), is once-upon-a-time we have done all of those things; the once-upon-a-time when our mind was in its infancy and knew little of risk or fear and cared less, our mind (mostly) protected us from going too far; well far too far, too often.
It was during all those life-threatening adventures, (those naughty and dangerous liaisons, the arguments and battles, the fights and flights our immature brains took us on), we collected lots and lots of information, comprehension, realisation, skills and familiarity.
In other words, we gained awareness, understanding and experience, this is how we became educated and intelligent, this is what gives us an erudition of life.
It is what we loosely and casually refer to as wisdom and knowledge.
These are the life skills one collects in the only way possible, by living over a long period, or at least the longest period time allows our weak and feeble bodies to function.
You see, I have out-lived many thousands of others over the years I have been walking upon this earth, (which, thankfully, I can still do… unaided).
I am glad I saw the sunrise this morning, the sad thing is so many did not.
Many of those who never got to see the sunlight today are friends and family, many older than I, many younger. Worst of all, some had only minutes of life with which we could chart their age.
The fact is the number of people who are older than I is quickly diminishing.
Now my mourning’s are frequently for those of my generation, a generation who should use their life skills and knowledge to help and nurture those who are young enough and fortunate enough to have minds which believes it is protected by an invincible body, such as our own did all those years past.
All we have learned of life and living; those births we have witnessed, our loves, both lost and lasting. The passionate moments, some intimate, comprised of twisting limbs and thrusting loins, others of the soul; music, art, theatre, dreams and scenes, vistas of natural beauty. The recollection of our times of loss, of hurt, of feeling pain; both physical and of the heart, not forgetting the grief and deaths.
This is our accumulated wisdom.
This is what we should share, what we should endeavour to teach our children, our children’s children and their children.
‘Ahh’, I hear you say, but children do not listen, do not take heed, so it is best to leave them to find their way.
I do not disagree.
However, (which is a nicer way to say but because there is always a ‘but’.)
If we share our knowledge, leave it somewhere future generations can discover it, they can learn, or at least be guided by that which we have spent a lifetime accumulating.
This is why I believe I have a duty to leave my thoughts behind when I have gone when I have shuffled from off my mortal coil.
This is why I choose to write.
Woven within the lines of my fiction and on the pages of my fantasies are the truths of life and the facts of living. All the wisdom and knowledge I accrued during my lifetime.
The words within my books and short stories are my bequest to the world, to a future I cannot be a part of, at least in person.
I chose to be a writer, not for monetary wealth or recognition, but to leave a legacy beyond simplistic values.
My wish is my words are read by the generations yet to come.
Maybe then my life will not have been lived in vain.
Today, as its Electric Eclectics third birthday, (hip hip hooray), rather than post about books, or writing, or authorship, or ‘being Indie’, I thought I would share a useful tool with you.
It is one I often use when communicating ‘overseas’ via the ‘net’.
I am sure you will find it as useful and as helpful as I…
As the founder of Electric Eclectic, part of my job is to keep in contact with our authors, which is not as easy as it might appear.
One of the main reasons is, Electric Eclectic authors are dispersed around the world, from the USA, through Europe, right to the Antipodes, which means there is no suitable panoptic time to engage with everyone simultaneously.
Okay, there is UTC – Universal Time Coordinated, which is another term for GMT – Greenwich Mean Time. It has nothing to do with Greenwich village and everything to do with Greenwich in the UK, which is on the Zero Meridian, that’s 0° longitude meridian, also known, unsurprisingly as the Greenwich Meridian.
Now, to have a standardised time the whole world can utilize when communicating, especially when using the internet or worldwide web sounds a great idea… but for a few issues.
One is DST – Daylight Saving Time, or in the UK, BST – British Summer Time, (Other countries have various terms for the same thing), it is where the clocks are advanced for one hour in the spring.
The other is Local Time. Knowing which Local Time Zone you are in.
Considering the USA has 9 time zones, Canada 6, Europe 7, Asia 11, Russia 11, China 5, Australia 3 and New Zealand 2, you can see arranging an inclusive scheduled event on a global scale is not as easy as it may first appear.
I often query those who create Facebook events without considering the above. Those who do so are surely naïve if they do not understand the importance of looking further afield than their backyards?
Therefore, to schedule a live global meeting between, say, seventeen authors, who reside over four continents needs to be planned carefully.
One tool I have found to be immensely helpful is World Time Buddy https://www.worldtimebuddy.com/ Here you can see your time and those of locations you select so you are in no doubt of what time it is, anywhere.
The ‘Event Widget’ is an excellent tool, schedule your event using the Widget and all those using World Time Buddy will have the time automatically displayed in your time AND there local time… you need do nothing, its automatic.
Bookmark ‘World Time Buddy’ now. There is even a mobile/cell app for Android and Apple.
Better still, the basic mode is FREE. (Paid upgrades available).
Brian O’Hare has written a number of fiction novels. His first was Fallen Men, a contemporary novel set in Ireland, which won Top Medallist Honours in the General Fiction Category of the prestigious New Apple Awards for Excellence in Literature.
Brian is currently writing more books in the award-winning The Inspector Sheehan Mysteries Series, which are detective novels set in Belfast, Northern Ireland.
If you are an aspiring writer, a novice writer, an Indie writer, an experienced writer, or even a published writer, you will come to learn that the actual product you have produced, or are about to produce, is only the beginning of a long and complex journey.
Your work is finished, it’s not far from a masterpiece, and you just can’t wait to get it out there to the reading public. You rub your hands in anticipation and wait for the sales you know are inevitable.
And you wait.
And you wait.
What on earth is happening? I mean, this is great piece of work. Why isn’t it on the New York Times Top Ten already?
Have you any idea of the numbers of books out there that your work is competing with? A quick visit to Amazon’s ranking lists on Author Central will reveal that there are some 6 to 8 million books there alone. It’s like a huge warehouse that is about half a mile long, shelved from floor to ceiling on both sides and somewhere in there, occupying about an inch width in that vast space, is your book.
How likely is it that someone browsing that huge cavern of books will happen upon (and actually purchase) yours?
That’s why marketing and social media work are so essential. You have to do something to get awareness of your book’s existence before the reading public.
And that still doesn’t mean that they will actually purchase and read it. Worse still, hundreds of thousands of kindle books are offered at bargain prices, often even free.
Thousands of kindle readers buy these books. But research has shown that a huge percentage of them end up lying in people’s kindles, never to be read.
Oh?! Yes, oh! So you decide, “Geez! Unless I start marketing, my book has no chance.”
And that is what brings me to the point of this short article.
The marketing world is huge, and it is full of wolves in sheep’s clothing, snakes with the siren voices of the serpent in Disney’s Jungle book, sharks with more rows of teeth than you can count, all ready to dive on the innocent, naive writer who is seeking help to get his book noticed.
Oh, yes. You WILL have to market your book, you WILL have to accept that there are costs attached to this, you WILL have to rely on the expertise and support of those who know what they are doing. But how does one know who is the shark and who is genuine?
One vital and important step you must take before you do anything is to visit Writer Beware.
Victoria Strauss and her team have been fighting valiantly for years to identify the scammers – the Vanity publishers who promise the earth and deliver nothing, the contests and awards schemes that only line the pockets of the organisers, the many marketing services that cost the earth but more often than not result in nil sales.
Writer Beware names and shames the fake publishers, the fake agents, the grasping marketers, and offers pages and pages of advice and information on what signs to watch out for if you are approached by anyone offering to promote your work.
Writer Beware is operated by an extraordinary group of people who selflessly work prodigious hours to help writers. I don’t know anything about them or why they do what they do, and, by the way, I have no connection with them whatever.
I just happened upon their website and I have been fascinated by the essays and articles they write about all the scams and scammers out there in the literary world. I have learned so much from them and, doubtless, since I tend to spend a bit on marking my own books, have been saved hundreds of pounds that I might otherwise have tossed to the scavengers.
This is the link to Writer Beware. Check them out.
We are all guilty, at times, of taking things for granted, and that includes me.
For example, I have taken it for granted you know what Electric Eclectic is and how it works, which I know you, or at least many people, do not.
So, I shall endeavour to explain…
Whether you are an established author, an emerging writer or a debut novelist, all of us have one main wish when it comes to our works; we want our books to be read.
To achieve your dream, you must let the world know you have written a great work, a wonderful collection of short stories or poetry, an enticing novel, your mémoire, or whatever writings you may publish.
This is when things become difficult for indie authors. Few of us have the funds, the know-how, the contacts, the experience or the backing to compete with mainstream publishing houses.
Neither do most have the luxury of time; many indies hold down full-time jobs, have children and family members to care for, along with the many other commitments.
Life can be hectic and demanding.
These are a few of the reasons I founded Electric Eclectic.
Electric Eclectic is NOT a publisher. We do not take any royalties.
Neither do we claim any rights over your work. What is yours, remains yours.
So, what is Electric Eclectic?
In its simplest form, Electric Eclectic is a marketing brand.
Technically, Electric Eclectic is a decentralised international co-operative alliance, managed by members in various countries around the globe, forming a strong branded synergy of collaborative association specialising in authorship, book branding, publishing, marketing and promotions.
Using Electric Eclectic branding, being part of the alliance, allows authors to penetrate deeper and wider into the publishing marketplace reaching many more readers than one can do alone.
Electric Eclectic authors work together and for one another while promoting their books and author presence.
Electric Eclectic concentrates in promoting the brand itself, creating marketing opportunities and offering services for the benefit of its member authors.
As an Electric Eclectic author, you also have the backing of the other members, who will willingly advise, help and support you when required.
Electric Eclectic has a far-reaching, multi-platform social media presence encompassing, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, YouTube, MeWe, LinkedIn and many more.
Plus, we have a great ‘friends’ network, these are other author networks and publishing houses who work closely with us in promoting indie authors books and those published by the small press, therefore greatly extending our market penetration.
We have a large range of information; Documents, Files, Links, Giveaway books, and various Services to aid and assist Electric Eclectic authors and to help and encourage the use of the marketing and promotional opportunities available through Electric Eclectics initiatives.
Electric Eclectic is not a membership scheme.
There is no annual fee or charge.
It is NOT FREE to join, but it’s darned close.
We do ask for a once off, lifetime author registration fee. This confirms you as an Electric Eclectic author. You’ll be surprised just how small this fee is.
The second cost is a licence fee, allowing you to use the Electric Eclectic branding. Each book using the Electric Eclectic branding requires a licence, as this is linked to the books ISBN or ASIN. Again, this is a very small amount.
We do NOT claim Electric Eclectic is the answer to your all your prayers.
This is NOT a get-rich-quick scheme. Nor do we promise the sales of your books will increase a million-fold overnight or the number of ardent fans will rocket through the roof.
Electric Eclectic should form ‘part-of‘ your authorship, publishing and marketing armoury.
It is NOT intended to replace it. You will still need to work at promoting your books.
What Electric Eclectic is, is a low cost, effective method of reaching a wider audience, connecting with likeminded authors, gaining accesses to help, information & documentation, and benefitting from Electric Eclectic’s marketing initiatives.
Like many writers I have a store of part written works. Literary orphans, many of whom deserve better parenting than I have given.
Some are first drafts of short stories, ones which need attention before I could possibly allow others to set eyes upon them.
Some are beginnings of new books and novels. Many are several chapters – or more – in length. A few far longer, yet abandoned and gathering dust in the archives of ‘I’ll take another look at it, soon, one day, when I have time, sometime.’
Some are mere scribblings, outlines of thought, rough drafts of similar concept, or of unjointed notes, sort-of-bullet-points, fleeting notions.
Occasionally, I have pulled the odd page from the depths of neglect. In a few instances, I have reworked such a piece, even developed it into a viable story.
But those times are seldom.
Generally, when I unearth an old unfinished, partly written, abandoned tale, I quickly scan it, faintly recall its birth and return it, with a promise of coming back and spending some time with it ‘when I can give it the attention it deserves.’
Which is probably, almost certainly, a long way off from this current day, like… never.
We make the excuse of having more pressing and urgent tasks as current commitment. We enjoy the conception of creation, of having new babies in the making and we look forward to the birth of out next.
That is, if they reach as far as the publicatory birth. If our current focus is not waylaid or distracted by another fancy, another attractive proposition of literary lust which causes us to forsake the unborn penned pages, formed only weeks ago, during our crazed desire to conceive another narrative fable.
We, as writers, are not good rolemodels for caring and nurturing our creativities.
This is, as you can tell, one of the ‘things’ which I have been silently musing over during the past however-long it has been.
I wanted to understand why I could not simply open a file, drag out the unborn foetus of past indulgence and continue writing where I had left off. Even a re-read and re-write, rather like a genetic splicing of characteristics, to take each past abandoned child of mine from infantile scrawling to full blown beauty and let them loose.
So, I tasked myself to do precisely that. To wrench open the doorway of dusty archives and let the light flood in.
I was astounded by the mass of unloved writings huddled in the dank corners of my hard drive. However, I was determined to make amends for the neglect suffered by these poor word documents. After all, they never asked to be created.
One by one, I read the works.
By the time I reached mid-way point of the fifth part-work, I had my answer.
It is all to do with mood, muse and moment. At least it is for me.
Allow me to explain…
As I said earlier, literary lust and crazed desire set us on a special relationship in the attempt to conceive a beautiful outcome, a desired work of the bestselling nature.
While our mindset is concentrated, focused on a single relationship we flourish, some of us are capable of holding two, maybe three such affairs on a steady and productive track.
But each and all of these are balancing on a knife edge of frustration, distraction and boredom. Unable to help ourselves, our minds are constantly on the look-out for other attractive propositions and exciting ventures.
Therefore, once our muse is diverted the love for what is under our fingers wanes. Rarely is it lost, just lessened, it diminishes, at least for the present.
Then, one day we find these lost loves, or that which we once begat from such a relationship; they reach out, arms feebly grabbing for our attention.
But are we ready to take them to our bosom once more?
Most time, the shame is, we are not. We are not ready or willing. So, we slam the door in their faces, committing them to the darkness of closed files one again.
Why are we so cruel in our neglect?
The answer, I have found, is that mindset I mentioned earlier. To pick-up and move forward, we must rekindle the fondness we felt before, relight the old flame of particular creation.
Without us being ‘in the zone’ with regards to each individual story, we shall never see them grow into the works they surely deserve to be.
Maybe, to assuage your guilt of the shame and self-reproach I have now raised in your heart and mind, because of your wicked neglect over your part works, maybe you should unlock you archive doors and take some time with your unborn literary children.
Bring them out of the shadows, let them dance in the sunlight of new development and re-writing nirvana. You never know what wonderful orphans you may have forgotten.
Need more encouragement?
Then do this…
Dust off one of your lost children, re-write and re-work it into a Novelette or Novella, then publish it as an eBook or a Pocketbook or both, under the Electric Eclectic brand.
Share your creation with our Electric Eclectic authors, allow us to help you spread the word of your new-born, to introduce it to our loving readers.
Become an Electric Eclectic author today and start sharing your once orphaned works with the world.
This year, 2020, marked the 75th anniversary of the end of World War 2. Probably the most momentous historical occasion in living memory.
Many military and veterans’ associations and charities planned special events, shows, exhibitions and displays in remembrance of VE-day, D-Day and VJ-Day, which, due to the Coronavirus pandemic necessitated cancellation.
Every day, memories of World War 2, its sights and sounds, its terrors and triumphs, disappear. Yielding to the inalterable process of ageing, the men and women who fought and won the great conflict are now in their late 80s and 90s. The oldest reported, 110 and 105 respectively.
It is doubtful how many may still be with us to observe future milestone in our history of remembrance. One of the main reasons 2020 was to be a major worldwide commemorative event.
At the time I write this post, both the VE-Day and D-Day dates have passed which is one reason I write of VJ-Day.
Another reason is, my grandfather, Percy Doswell, a Royal Airforce doctor, witnessed the surrender ceremony at the Municipal Building of Singapore, headed by Lord Louis Mountbatten, Supreme Allied Commander of South East Asia Command, who came to Singapore to receive the formal surrender of the Japanese forces in the region from General Seishirō Itagaki on behalf of General Hisaichi Terauchi.
A photograph montage, near the end of this blog post were taken by my grandfather and have never been published or publicly displayed before.
However, let me start with a simple historical explanation for those who may not know too much regarding the ending of World War 2.
D-Day; the popular name given to the Normandy Landings, on 6 June 1944. (D-Day and H-Hour being common military terms of the period.)
VE Day marks the end of World War II in Europe, (Victory in Europe, hence ‘VE’.) May 8th, 1945 the date the Allies celebrated the defeat of Nazi Germany and the end of Adolf Hitler’s Reich, formally recognising the end of the Second World War in Europe.
VJ Day signals the end of World War II in its entirety. It is when Japan finally surrendered. (Victory over Japan Day, VJ-Day, also known as Victory in the Pacific Day, or VP-Day.)
In Japan, August 15th is known as the ‘Memorial Day for the end of the war‘. 終戦記念日, Shūsen-kinenbi); the official name for the day, however, is ‘the day for mourning of war dead and praying for peace.’ (戦没者を追悼し平和を祈念する日, Senbotsusha o tsuitōshi heiwa o kinensuru hi. (This official name was adopted in 1982 by an ordinance issued by the Japanese government.)
In the UK and the US, VJ Day is celebrated on different dates.
The initial announcement of Japan’s surrender was made on 15 August 1945, the date the UK marks as VJ-Day each year.
However, the surrender documents were officially signed on the USS Missouri battleship on 2 September 1945, which is why America celebrates on 2 September.
This blog, however, concentrates on the 12 September 1945, the date the surrender instrument was signed at the Singapore Municipal Building, (now known as City Hall), simply because, (as stated above), this was the part of the war’s official ending my grandfather witnessed and of which my family have personal records.
On 12 September 1945, Supreme Allied Commander (Southeast Asia), Lord Louis Mountbatten, accompanied by the Deputy Supreme Commander Raymond Wheeler, was driven to the ceremony by a released prisoner-of-war. As the car drove by the streets, sailors and marines from the East Indies Fleet who lined the streets greeted them.
At the Municipal Building, Mountbatten was received by his Commanders-in-Chief and high-ranking Allied Officers based in Singapore. Also gathered in front of the Municipal Building were four Guards-of-Honour, from the Royal Navy, the Royal Air Force, the Indian army, and Australian paratroopers. Mountbatten led an inspection of the officers before proceeding to the chamber where the ceremony was to be held. During the inspection, a fleet band played “Rule Britannia” accompanied by the firing of a seventeen-gun salute by the Royal Artillery.
Terauchi was not able to attend the surrender ceremony as he fell ill due to a stroke. However, he personally surrendered to Mountbatten on 30 November 1945 in Saigon (Ho Chi Minh city).
He also surrendered his two swords: a short sword forged in the 16th century and a long sword forged in the 13th century. Mountbatten later presented the short sword to King George VI.
The Japanese signed a total of 11 copies of the Instrument of Surrender; one each for the British, American, Chinese, French, Dutch, Australian, Indian and the Japanese governments; and one each for King George VI, the Supreme Commander, Mountbatten and the South East Asia Command’ records.
The ceremony was also witnessed by 400 spectators (one being my grandfather, Percy Doswell), made up of commanders and officers from the navy, army and air force, as well as senior officers from the Supreme Headquarters of the South East Asia Command, 14 leaders of the Malayan communities, the Sultan of Johore, Sir Ibrahim, and released prisoners-of-war, who were all seated behind the Allied representatives.
In the chamber, flags of Allied forces were hung and at the bases of its pillars as were one officer representing the different fighting forces; the Gurkhas, Sikhs, Australians, British airmen, Dutch, Americans, French (from the battleship Richelieu) and the 5th Indian Division.
The surrender ceremony ended with the hoisting of the Union Jack and the playing of the national anthems of all the Allied nations. The Union Jack used was the same flag which flew over the Government House before the war and which was hidden by a Malayan civil servant, Mervyn Cecil Frank Sheppard in his pillow during his captivity in the Changi Prison during the Japanese Occupation.
The official ceremony was followed by a celebration at the Padang, which included a victory parade.
A British military administration, using surrendered Japanese troops as security forces, was formed to govern the island until March 1946.
King George VI addressed the nation from a balcony at Buckingham Palaceand streets across the nation were filled with people singing, cheering, dancing in scenes which echoed the declaration of peace in Europe three months earlier.
Bonfires were lit, fireworks sent soaring into the sky and historic buildings floodlit as the whole country celebrated the news that their remaining troops would soon be returning home.
Immediately operations began to repatriate some of the 130,000 Allied prisoners held by Japanese troops in POW camps across the region. The RAF parachuted in 136 teams to negotiate the release of prisoners in Operation Mastiff.
Sadly, the end of World War 2 did not bring the everlasting peace so many wished for, war and conflict still rage around the world to this day.
I note two books you may wish to read, the first, an anthology from the authors of Electric Eclectic, written to celebrate the 75th VE-Day anniversary, is simply called ‘Victory 75‘. This can be obtained in Paperback from Amazon, here, or as an eBook/Kindle,here
The second is ‘Life in the War Zone‘, n award winning collection of short stories classed as fiction, yet are based on true accounts given by those living in areas of conflict around the world. Paperback only. Here.