Meeting Alan Parks – author of Seriously Mum, What’s an Alpaca?

I’d like to say hello to Alan Parks, the author of fly on the wall, tell it like it really is living abroad in Spain book called ‘Seriously Mum, What’s an Alpaca?’. He’s also offering a free ebook copy of this funny and alternative look at the life outside the UK to three people. To be in with a chance of winning, just leave a comment at the end of the interview.

Seriously Mum What's An AlpacaThe Review

I’ve often wondered what it would be like to live abroad, to experience another country at first hand, and to spend more time than I have in a two week break on the Costa Bognor to really get to grips with the people, the culture, the climate and the siesta. The problem is, I’m also a bit of a coward. I like my countryside manicured and I know that I’d be irritated very quickly by the manana attitude that pervades the southern continent. So I’m always, and instantly, hooked when someone offers me a vicarious way of exploring my ‘dream’ without having to get my feet dirty so to speak.

Alan’s book gave me the chance to see whether I’d be able to confront the language difficulties, the heat and the tentative plumbing in a funny, warts and all expose of getting into a brand new job (no previous experience needed apparently!) in a brand new country and with a whole host of additional hangers on, from dogs and cats to people, to boot. If you are one of the many who think that life in the frying pan of Spain is preferable to the dull grey days of winter in the UK then perhaps this might be the book for you before you pack up and go.

Alan ParksThe Alan Parks Interview

What is one thing that no-one would usually know about you?

My partner Lorna and I met on the internet, over 10 years ago now, when it was unfashionable to meet somebody online. Now everybody does it. She is also, older than me, which at the time also didn’t happen. These days she would have called a cougar. Not sure that her daughter would have approved of that.

How did you choose a title for your book?

I was going to call the book, ‘Into the Frying Pan’ which refers to the area in Spain in which we decided to move to. It also had a double meaning of us getting in to a difficult place, but people didn’t ‘get it’.

The current title appeared to me from the text. The original title was ‘Bloody Hell, What’s an Alpaca?’ which was what Lorna’s daughter said when we told her of our plans. Subsequently I had to change it from Bloody Hell to Seriously Mum as I had trouble getting the book accepted on some web sites.

Have you ever written naked?

I spend three months of the year writing practically naked but not completely. We live near Cordoba in Spain, and in the summer months 45 degree is the average daily temperature, so it is impossible to wear many clothes.

What is the single biggest challenge you faced when writing your book?

Because my book is a memoir, the biggest challenge has actually been living through everything that is in the book. Writing it all down has been quite a cleansing process and gives you a chance to put things in to perspective. We have done things, or are doing something now that most people dream about, but never have the nerve to actually try.

What has been the best experience you have ever had in your life?

Without a doubt this whole experience, moving to Spain, doing something different, experiencing another culture and meeting new people has been the best thing I have ever done. In some ways it has also been the hardest, but that just adds spice to life.

If you could commit the perfect murder where would you hide the body?

Well I don’t want to scare anybody that may come and visit, but we live deep in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by covered hills and forests, and when the removal men came to deliver our property, the first thing one of them said was “Who did you murder to move all this way?” So I think maybe somewhere under an olive tree. There is probably a book in there somewhere 😉


Where can you find out more about Alan and get a copy of Seriously Mum, What’s an Alpaca?

Seriously Mum, What’s an Alpaca is available in Kindle and Paperback formats from and

You can also meet Alan in the following locations online:


Why ‘The Thursday Throng’?

These posts are called The Thursday Throng in honour of the throng that waits eagerly outside the book store when a new author is doing a book signing event or appearance. On this website it takes the form of a ‘Meet the Author‘ online event with some information about our author’s latest book and an interview. If you would like to take part in the Thursday Throng then why not visit Thursday Throng Author Interview Guidelines to find out more.

If you would like to see all the Authors who have been featured on The Thursday Throng you can click here:

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  1. Half way through the 1st book right now, enjoying it! Honestly I’m ready to move! I would in a heart beat but….I’m certain my wife wouldn’t go for it. Small established vineyard here in the middle of the best place on earth to grow grapes, SW Missouri, would you like to trade? I was in Benidorm, Spain in 1982 loved it! Greg