Could you tell us about your background?
I was born in
Could you give a brief description of your book ‘an odd boy’ Volume I?
It’s a monothematic memoire of the Arts between 1957 and 1975 – written as a novel with dialogue. Volume I covers the years 1957 to 1968 and concentrates mostly on poetry and the formation of the Savage Cabbage Blues Band. There’s a thread of romance that runs through the book – because I see romance as inseparable form Art. You have to be in love with colour, sound, shape and form to be an artist – and so romantic love naturally reflects the dimension of creativity. In a way the book is a description of a young lad’s rebellion against pedestrian normality.
What was the hardest part of writing ‘an odd boy’?
Knowing where to stop. As it is . . . the four volumes of ‘an odd boy’ runs to little short of Tolstoy’s ‘War and Peace’. There are so many episodes that had to remain unwritten. There were always many fascinating facts I had to omit. I was given the good advice to ‘kill the kittens’ but doing so was sometimes painful. ‘Kittens’ are the aspects of the book you love – but which detract from the flow and dynamism of the book.
What books have had the greatest influence on you?
Shakespeare and the Beat Poets. That’s my immediate answer – and it probably deliberately provocative. It’s hard to say which books have had the greatest influence – because I have been influenced by so many authors. Historical novels. I particularly love Jane Austen – for her wit and irony. I have great respect for Patrick O’Brien. His nineteen volume sea faring odyssey set during the Napoleonic Wars is a remarkable tour de force. It’s also delightfully informative on subjects as divergent as 18th Century psychology and medicine to anthropology and sociology. I suppose ‘an odd boy’ attempts to be informative in similar style vis-à-vis Blues and the Arts.
Briefly, what have you done to market ‘an odd boy’?
myself – it was all arranged by my marvellous publishers. they began
with a Facebook launch, which involved two hours question-answering in relation
to ‘an odd boy’. The questions were mainly based on extracts that I’d been
posting on FaceBook over the last year. The extracts were culled from the
website dedicated to ‘an odd boy’ we’ve received some delightful endorsements
from international Blues performers such as Sugar Blue, Deborah Magone,
and CJ Tozer. I’ve been happy to discover that ‘an odd boy’ now has 5
star reviews on Amazon, Lulu, and other websites. We held a book signing
How do you spend your time when you are not writing?
Enjoying my family
– there’s laughter and fun in our home. We play and listen to music, read,
paint – and we all ride horses. We also watch movies – mainly period drama. Of
course my writing time extends beyond literature to answering email from our
students and composing periodic epistles for the same. I travel to the
What are you working on next?
Yes - there is
still editing work to carry out on the next three volumes of ‘an odd boy’.
After writing ‘an odd boy’ I wrote ‘wisdom eccentrics’ a book about my time in
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