I grew up in near Leicester, England, and on entering my teenage years I was greatly surprised to discover an interest in all things practical – I blamed it on the Meccano set given to me as a child.
This admission was all my careers officer needed to mark me down for an engineering apprenticeship when I left school. The training though, did prove worthwhile and I subsequently gained employment working in the car industry as a toolmaker – yes, done all those jokes.
But machining bits of metal to exacting dimensions week in, week out, made me yearn for even greater levels of excitement, so on my free weekends I would get together with other like-minded people and become a willing participant in their outdoor nocturnal activities. No, not outdoor group sex – the Territorial Army (like The US National Guard.) I found myself enjoying the military life and in the process, received lots of valuable training – like how to blow up a dead sheep, for instance.
After twelve years of strict discipline and being ordered around – no not the Army, I also got married for the first time – I hankered after a new challenge, so gave up both engineering and the T.A. to become a village shopkeeper. The hours though were long with little time left for recreation. Working on a few ideas I’d had over the years, I turned to inventing things. Alas, fame, fortune and marital harmony proved increasingly elusive and I found myself having to start all over again.
So I embarked on a new career in the railway industry. It was during my weekends at home that I started writing short sketches; having progressed from the humorous introductions I’d written during the time I worked as a toastmaster (did I mention that before?) The scribbling work grew until thoughts turned to putting some of my novel wit into – well, a witty novel. The result of all this being my first novel, Bland Encounter!
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