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I have written my whole life; seriously, You can find 40 years worth of novels, plays, poetry and essays published at my website:
For some reason, possibly because I grew up in a house with three strong women, most of my novels feature women as their main character. In 'Wailing on the While' there are two girls (the feisty Kay and the dozy Carol) who battle an assortment of oversexed boys and devious men and emerge with dignity. The character Kay is based on the real person, a typical Essex girl who knows how to fight and regularly puts the men around her to shame. The second main character,Carol, is also based on a girl I squatted with back in the 70's and her sad life is all there; exposed in the pages of the book.
In 'Lady Mandrax' the main character is a black girl with piercing green eyes, called Mandy.Of course I'm not black or a girl so the character is based on a really good friend who is a beautiful person and a good story teller. Some of Mandy's experiences are based on the tales my friend relayed on long summer nights over open bottles and oceans of wine.
In 'Dana' the main character is an ex-alcoholic Irish lady. I grew up around lots of Irish people and I've based her on a woman my mother used to drink with. Myriam from 'Killers Moon' is another strong woman who is fighting her past and trying to be happy. It's something I think most of us have to do; especially in England where class and gender politics feature so heavily. If you reach my age and have never known grief or homelessness then you are very lucky.
The men I write about seem to be damaged in lots of ways and I guess there is a little of me in all of them. Being a vulnerable young person with no adult support I can understand my behavior and I hope the readers of 'Boy out in Africa' and 'Wailing on the While' (which are both semi-autobiographical) will do so too. Looking back at my promiscuity as a young teenager makes me a little sad. I guess early experience of sex would make anyone open for exploitation and so I can see my behavior as a direct result of that.
I make no excuses for my writing, some people find honest discussion of sexual activity tasteless, but it's a reflection of the life I've led. Drugs have featured heavily in my life but I don't think they have destroyed it; quite the opposite. Like Keith Richard, the only problems I had with drugs were legal ones. I don't drink alcohol and consequently feel fitter that most people of a similar age. I left school two years early because it was too violent (read Wailing on the While) and was almost illiterate aged 16. Over the years I've worked hard to make my spelling and grammar better and have used positive thinking to break down the walls that lack of ability created.
We can all take our lives back by thinking positively and doing it.
During the recent period of uploading I have managed to edit and deal with the poor grammar that held me back when I was younger. I am proud of my work and so far the 39.000 readers I've had to date agree with me.; I wish more people would pay to read my work but I don't write to be paid; I do it because I enjoy immersing myself in creativity. If others enjoy or learn anything from what I've created it's a bonus.
We've all been spoiled by free content on-line so I understand why people don't want to be bothered paying for something they previously got for free. It would be nice if I could earn something but, as I've said, it's not why I write.
Because I have battled against class and snobbery all my life this subject interests me. Having experienced difficulties in the past I have an intuitive understanding of deprivation (whether it be poor housing or homelessness or habitual behavior). When combined with my psychological training I'm able to get into my character's minds and explain what drives them. I'm also fascinated by the unusual and the unusual in history; or odd historical events. Hence one day I may write about a drug addicted cab driver who has a trans-sexual as a partner (DRIVER) and the next about ghosts in the Middle Ages (Malediction).
My first book 'Before Now and After' was started when I was a wayward 15 year old at one of those Stonehenge Free festivals back in the early 70's. I still own the two foolscrap tombs filled with my longhand scrawl which I treasure. As the sound of Hawkwind filled the hash tainted air and rain fell across the field of tents and flags the story just spilled onto the page.
It ended up being written backward with the last section written first, and the first section written last. The narrative is like a teenagers bedroom wall, here's a splash of occultism, there a flash of music and a whole load of other interest thrown into the mix. During my recent rewrite I have made it scan better and it is definitely something I can be proud of today.
The publishing industry never understood where I was coming from and only saw the crazy grammar; all I can say now is thank the lord for internet publishing and sites like Smashwords.