Like many of my other passions, of art, of life, travel, I have had a life long affinity to the game of Rugby. The reason why? I have always loved the fact that the 'Beautiful Game', is one of 'the sum of the parts equals more than the whole'. That there is no singular superstar, it's about the combined efforts of the entire team, the common focus, and always underpinned by Civility, Discipline, and Respect.
How does this relate to my writing journey? Well, for me, it's not about my somewhat limited talents as a writer, it's about the story. That is the most important thing, and how the people, past and present are the team players, the real heroes, I am just the one telling their story, but without my work may not exist at all. I endeavor to treat their journeys of life with the same three levels of respect.
After I completed book number one, Operation ARGUS, I didn't feel like an author or even a storyteller. I was compelled to write number two, Bikini BRAVO, filling in the gaps of the first, expanding where I identified weaknesses and developing the tale.
When I was a child, at only seven, I entered a competition, and I got published. Following a career of business writing, I look back and maybe it was this early experience and these words that turned me later in life to writing the historical fictionalized novels that I have, so far.
"Happiness is like a disease, it spreads"
I grew up listening to my father's tales of the war, always the good stories - the Normandy Landings, Gold Beach, the heroism. It was only in later life he shared with me some the horrors, and unfortunately, it wasn't until after he died I watched Saving Private Ryan to realize the visual and full extent of what he had been through.
I grew up knowing the Shackleton story, and Cold COURAGE, an epic tale of leadership, survival, grit, and determination. Like the stories of my father, they were in a different world, a different time, and an inconceivable place for someone growing up in the north of England during the Punk Rock revolution.
And hence, book number four, Northern ECHO, set in those times and all the crazy, self-inflicted, self-destructive events going on. To think that only three or so decades earlier, Great Britain and its allies had defeated the might of the Nazi war machine. Great Britain was on its knees and considered the 'Sick Man of Europe'.
In hindsight, perhaps it was saved by Margaret Thatcher, the Falklands War, and even the Punk Rock revolution. But the celebration of women in history and pioneers was top of my mind for my next project.
And now, I am in the process of bringing the story Gipsy MOTH to life. The tale of my aunt, in the airforce, my father, and Aviatrix Amy Johnson and Amelia Earhart in the 1920s and 30s and the pioneering, golden age of aviation.
In all of these books, I consider myself not to be the 'author', I make no claims as being the next Keats, but I am simply the conveyor, the 'storyteller', with hopefully civility, and respect, telling the stories of all of these true heroes.
It is not an easy journey, it is not one of fame and fortune, but in the words of one of the people in history that I admire the most,
"Never, never, NEVER Give Up!"
I hope you like my stories, and I hope to continue to bring you more to come!