In the 1970’s Erich Pabel, Germany, published a huge list of horror novels. I know that there were at least 421 titles, many translations of the works of writers in both Europe and the UK. Amongst the latter in their ‘Vampir Horror-Roman’ series were 7 of my own novels:
- 152 King Crabs Nachtmahl (Night of the Crabs)
- 309 Die Todesvogel (Bats out of Hell)
- 318 Die Killer-Krebse (Killer Crabs)
- 332 Das Schleim-Monster (The Slime Beast)
- 336 Die Ruckkehr des Werwolfs (Return of the Werewolf)
- 375 Die Geburt der Krebse (origin of the Crabs)
- 421 Die Todesgloche (Deathbell)
These were in magazine format and today are highly collectible, commanding high prices.
Always with an eye to new markets, both at home and overseas, I contacted Erich Pabel and enquired if they would be interested in an original novel by myself. They replied within a week, “yes please, but it has to be a werewolf novel.”
Fair enough, so I wrote ‘Night of the Werewolf’. This is in no way connected to my Werewolf trilogy (New English Library), instead a one-off. The latter were set around my home on the Shropshire/Welsh border so this time I chose Scotland as the location.
It was published as No.186 in the series and entitled ‘Der Ruf des Werwolfs’.
Shortly after publication Erich Pabel wrote to me to inform me that before they could pay me they needed written proof from a UK Income Tax inspector to the effect that I would be liable for tax in my own country.
So I made an appointment to meet an Inland Revenue official. I was kept waiting for the best part of an hour and then this staid, humourless inspector turned up. I presented him with the publishers’ letter and my contract. He read them and then regarded me with what I can only describe as suspicion. Was I pulling a fast one? What had werewolves to do with payment from Germany? Maybe he thought it was some kind of money laundering fraud!
Anyway, after numerous questions, the answers to which seemed to satisfy him, he signed the German tax document. I think by this time he thought I was some kind of nut case but quite harmless!
Years later ‘Night of the Werewolf’ was serialized in my fan magazine ‘Graveyard Rendezvous’ and the book is now published in English by Black Hill Books.