It wasn't until 1999 that I first started using the internet and I created my first website. It was a simple site consisting of a title, a picture of Lara Croft and an email link. I offered help for people who were stuck while playing Tomb Raider. I think there were three Tomb Raider games at the time. Surprisingly I did get emails from people requesting help and I would always send a detailed series of screenshots with each reply. Those days have long passed and now people use YouTube whenever they need such help. After making more and more websites I linked them under the one umbrella site RaysNet until eventually they merged into one website in its own right becoming more of a site about books and stories than about gaming.

I'd like to say that I've always been a lover of books and it's been my lifelong ambition to become a writer but that would be untrue. It was computers that were my first love. Adventure games were my thing. Interactive stories were an offshoot of my desire to create virtual worlds online and to tell stories that fully involve the reader, it wasn't until a much later date that I started writing conventional stories.

My preference is to write in first-person. I feel it draws the reader into the story allowing them to see through the eyes of the main character. It also allows me, the writer, to live out a fantasy as in many ways I'm on the same journey as the main character wondering how best to deal with the problems that confront them. Sometimes I'm not sure what's coming next as I write. In some ways I'm the main character in every book I write while the other characters have a life of their own. I'm a very different person in real life than how I come across within the written word.

As well as writing I also love sci-fi, anime, manga comics, gaming, cosplay and Hello Kitty. I regularly attend sci-fi / anime / comic conventions and often cosplay as a famous character. I've been Captain Picard on a number of occasions, and I've also crossplayed as Lara Croft and Faith Connors. People often stop and ask to take a photo of me. Lara Croft was my most popular cosplay yet strangely Faith Connors didn't attract that much attention. Captain Picard is relatively easy to cosplay because it's essentially a Star Trek top, black trousers and a bald head.


My Hello Kitty tattoo.

Me cosplaying as Captain Picard and Lara Croft.

About a year ago I entered the UK Novel Writing Competition. The unique feature of this competition is that the public are the judges and anyone can sign up to read these books. Also the authors' names aren't included with the book titles as to avoid anyone being influenced. It also meant I had to keep quiet about it in case it would be seen as me trying to promote my book if any of the judges came across my website, Twitter, Facebook or blog. There were three rounds to this competition and I managed to get to the final round but alas I didn't win. Out of 3112 entries I managed to get into the top 25 so it was still quite an achievement. The book is called Effluo Insula or Effluo Insula: Vern's Tale to give it its full title. It's available on this very website for free. Click on the Written Work link above. It's essentially a fantasy novel about a mysterious island, cultists and a monster troll containing lots of sword fighting and a very unexpected twist at the end. The two sequels are the same story told from different character perspectives each containing their own plot twists.


Effluo Insula: Vern's Tale, The King's Guard & Fjörgynn Warriors.

Anyway that's enough about me. There's a lot of content on this website, lots of exciting stories spanning a wide range of genres. Everything's free, simply click and enjoy. My social networking sites are listed at the bottom of the page. If you enjoyed something on this website you may consider donating via the PayPal link below which goes towards web hosting costs. You can fill in whatever amount you wish and can send a message at the same time. My email address is raymond31uk@hotmail.com