I loved the Sixties …

Of course, the twenties were incredible, the thirties and forties were fantastic, and the fifties were pretty good.

With effect from 7th November, I’ll embrace the Seventies.

It was 53 years ago that I joined the British Army, leaving home, and Scotland for the first time. The rest, as they say, is history.

I may have tackled my literary ambitions later in life than some authors, but I’m satisfied with what I’ve achieved thus far. 

I first tried my hand at creative writing in 1996, a few years after completing my military service in 1992. I wanted to record as much information as possible about my career, transcribing from notebooks, diaries, and official documents. I refreshed myself on how to touch-type, a skill I learned in the military. I produced countless pages of information, and tried over a short period to make it an autobiography, but the writing was awful for so many reasons.

As my next career (Retail Management) was taking off, I got back into reading, and some years later, in 2007, I bought books and magazines to study writing. I also joined websites that facilitated posting poetry, short stories, reading, and reviewing by all members. I next got underway with letters to magazines, and entering short story competitions. Success, apart from publication, included cash, book prizes, and inclusion in anthologies.

Since 2012, I’ve published novels, novellas, anthologies of short stories, and poetry collections. Between 2018, and the present day, with the exception of erotica, I’ve converted all of my work into paperback. My output was increased when my retail career ended after 25 years. I had reached official retirement age (65) in 2017.

As seen in the graphic above, I eventually completed what had started out as an autobiography. I amended the story to be fact-based-fiction, changing names and so on, which removes any worry of legal action. Instead of cutting out large segments of the story, I concentrated on making it an easy-to-follow, cohesive read by creating five logical phases to cover the time period. I then spent a year fine-tuning the end product one part at a time. The eBooks were published over 2016 and 2017. I returned to the manuscript, and, once again using logical phases, produced a paperback trilogy so that in either option, the story is the same, word-for-word. I’m delighted to report that they are among my top-selling titles.

What are my intention for the future?

My Work in Progress consists of four more crime thrillers, a sci-fi fantasy, and another anthology of short stories. When all of those have been published I may cease to produce new work.

I’m a firm believer that as authors, even after that final edit, and a book has been on sale for a while, we know there will be an urge to return to it. I’ve learned so much as time has passed, and my writing and style have improved. I’ve already revised most of my titles, but when the final one is published, I intend to reread each of my books, and improve them wherever possible.

Click here or on the banner to visit my author website.

There are so many things said about age, like it being, ‘but a number’, ‘sixty is the new forty’, and so forth, but for me as an author, each year creates another level of life experience, appreciation of all things, and a deep desire to improve, and entertain with my writing.

Updates here will keep readers in the loop regarding my progress. At some point while reading my catalogue, I may dream up another literary offering, but we’ll see.

Once again, I thank all of you who have helped make my lifelong writing dream a success.

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My Writing Year – 2022

For me, the start of a new year isn’t about reflecting on what has gone before, or organising my new (physical) diary, although setting that up does take a while. The first day of January for me, is a step forward from the day before, but it signals the need to have my creative house in order.

There’s something about a new diary, a new sketch pad, and, of course, for an author, a new book. I have three titles lined up and as I like to do, I’ll work through each steadily with no rush to finish anything too rapidly.

What have I got lined up?

Selena: Sea Nymph is intended to be a standalone, and however well it flows, if you’ll pardon the pun, I don’t intend to let the story tempt me into a sequel. I’m pleased to say that I have the first five chapters written and available for reading/comments in my Work in Progress menu. From Sunday, 6th February, only the first chapter will remain on view.

Crusader is a crime thriller, and will be worked on when the Selena manuscript is ‘resting’ for three or four weeks. The two books will take turns in commanding my attention. This is a system that has worked for me for a few years now.

The third proposed title for this year is Constance, which will be the sequel to Crusader. I wouldn’t normally suggest I was writing a sequel prior to the first story being written but on this occasion I’m confident that the premise will work. As you might expect, this second part will bring the story to a close.

Will I produce anything else this year?

I don’t intend any more novels during the year, and I’m still undecided about working on another anthology.

My wife and I have recently rejoined the camping fraternity with an updated set of wheels and a touring caravan. With luck and reasonable conditions I aim to spend more time mobile and on ‘research’ rather than writing.

My creative hands will continue to be full because I’ll be working for the brand produced for my pseudonym, which is seeing more attention than my work in recent times. It’s a strange feeling, to be successful anonymously. The stories are fun to write and when I last peeked at the website there was mention of a two-part novel, an anthology, and three novellas.

I’ll be reading widely as normal and beta reading for members of the IASD, but I might maintain a low profile on social media.

For now, from me, I hope you have a safe and prosperous year ahead and you read (and write), as much as you hope to.

Thank you for taking the time to read my blog, and as Bugs Bunny would say, That’s all folks.

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