Profile and Work
I was born in Rangiora, New Zealand and raised on a sheep farm. By the time I was eight my future was fixed: I loved learning and writing and I was falling in love with history and ideas. Sheep didn’t figure at all. My family for generations had produced farmers, engineers and housewives so I was furtive about my liberal arts aberration. I did tell my grandfather I wanted to be a writer, and he thrust out his stubborn no-nonsense old jaw and grumped, “What do you want to write about?” It took me thirty years to realise this was actually a wise question.
When I left high school I was shunted into a good, practical, well-paid job and fled overseas as soon as I had the money. I spent seven years living and travelling abroad. I made a proper job of it: beach-bummed in Israel, India and Thailand; hitch-hiked, biked and drove a disintegrating car around Europe; climbed pyramids; terrorised London streets as a courier; was shot at; lived in the desert; trekked in the Himalayas; slept in churchyards; had adventures down dark alleys and love affairs in all kinds of places.
Back in New Zealand I continued travelling, this time through a succession of jobs, propelled by five redundancies. Being single and frugal I decided I might as well be a freelance writer and starve on my own terms as lurch from one pointless serfdom to the next. For fifteen years I wrote on the marine industry, the aviation industry, the real estate industry, the energy industry, various other industries, and spiritual philosophy. The latter betrayed my real interest, and I gave regular talks to audiences of up to fifty on spiritual subjects. When I married and we had a son I returned to salaried work. I’m now a technical writer for a radio communications company. I sit in a cubicle and interpret acronyms. The things we do.
I had a book published by New Holland Publishers, Walking Historic Auckland: an anecdotal history. It was actually pretty good according to feedback.
I wrote the great Battle of Britain novel at the same time as James Cameron made Titanic, the link being that we both sought to draw meaning from history by marrying head and heart in a bed of factual fidelity and romantic invention. Just as I finished it a deluge of books on the battle flooded the market. I couldn’t see my weighty effort rising above this to give me financial independence; I needed to move on, so I gave up the soul-grinding search for a publisher.
I’m most of the way through writing a non-fiction book on a New Zealand squadron flying with the RAF in the Second World War. Two publishers have shown keenness. I wish getting novels published was that easy.
BOOK OVERVIEW and Cover (Still in process…)