TORONTO, Ont. - Truck News' own Edo van Belkom, award winning fiction writer and author of the Mark Dalton adventure series, will be on hand and signing copies of his work at the Truck News booth at Truck World this April.
AUTHOR! AUTHOR!: Edo van Belkom will greet fans at the Truck News booth at Truck World.
TORONTO, Ont. – Truck News’ own Edo van Belkom, award winning fiction writer and author of the Mark Dalton adventure series, will be on hand and signing copies of his work at the Truck News booth at Truck World this April.
The character of owner/operator Mark Dalton was created by van Belkom five years ago when van Belkom began contributing regularly to Truck News. He had written a couple of horror stories involving trucking when Truck News approached him to create a character that would reflect the challenges and adventures of the trucking industry. That’s how Mark Dalton was created and van Belkom is currently finishing up his 15th story in the Dalton series.
“At the beginning, I thought if I could just publish four or five stories in Truck News, it would be a great opportunity, but the 15th story is currently running, so I guess it was a success,” said van Belkom, winner of a Bram Stoker and two Aurora writing awards. “I said it then and I’ll say it again now, I’ll write these stories for as long as Truck News lets me.”
The prolific author said he likes to try to visit the truck shows whenever he can, to meet his readers and find new inspiration.
“I love attending the shows because it gives me a chance to meet people who enjoy reading the Dalton stories. A writer’s work is lonely and there isn’t always a lot of feedback so it’s satisfying to hear first-hand how much people enjoy my work,” said van Belkom. “Also, talking to drivers and hearing their stories and journeys on the road is a great source of inspiration for the Mark Dalton adventures yet to come.”
Although meeting the drivers themselves is great inspiration, said van Belkom, it’s still a challenge to come up with the premise for each of the Dalton stories.
“I’m not sure what the next story’s going to be yet, but I’m considering a story about Dalton helping some stranded motorists, then getting taken by them, and then having him get his revenge, in his usual clever way. Of course, the hard part is establishing all the intricate details of the story,” he said.
Not only does van Belkom spend his time writing about Dalton’s escapades, but he is an accomplished novelist as well. He has finished 25 books to date and his newest creation is Blood Road, a novel about a vampire truck driver who cruises the Trans-Canada highway in search of victims.
While the victims are strapped down in his sleeper, the driver feeds off them for several days, then dumps them on the side of the highway thousands of miles from where he picked them up. Blood Road should be in bookstores now.
If the Dalton series and his novels were not enough, van Belkom is also creating a Mark Dalton novella that will be part of a new FleetSmart home study program. He is aiming to complete this by 2005 and it will be free for anyone wanting to acquire their Smart Driver certification for long haul drivers.
Stop by to visit van Belkom at the Truck News booth at Truck World on Fri., April 23 in the afternoon or all day Sat., April 24.