Category Archives: Memoirs & Bios

How did ’15 WEEKS’ become an Amazon No.1 best seller in ONE day?

15-weeks-2017
15 WEEKS  has been republished and is NOW available as a FREE eBook. The 2017 edition was only released today and it is already topping rankings at Amazon.

Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #5,523 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store)
#1 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Nonfiction > Travel > Asia > Thailand
#4 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Nonfiction > Travel > Specialty Travel > Budget Travel

I am using Pronoun to  publish the 2017 editions of Thailand Diaries – 3 eBooks.

 They are now all FREE and can be found at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Apple iBooks and Google play. If you click where you see the link underlined you will be transported to my book page where you can choose your favourite retailer.

15 WEEKS

15 WEEKS my first book, was originally written in 2008 as a series of blog posts for a business colleague in South Africa. It seems raw and dated to me now but as it reflects my mood and view of Thailand at the time I refrained from re-writing it, although I have to admit I was tempted. It contains typically British humour, is recommended for travelers, would be ex-pats and those who enjoy light reading and a good laugh. Between Jun and Sep 2008 I stayed for fifteen weeks on the tropical island of Phuket where I formed first impressions of Thailand. I learned a little of what it would be like to live in Thailand permanently and diarised my activities, observations and some unusual incidents which took place during the sojourn. At the time I had no intention of settling in Thailand permanently but did glean valuable information which I have developed in the years since. Although I write from a male perspective I recognise that there are many female ex-pats grappling with the complexities of life in Thailand. So you will find many things that apply equally to women as they do to men. Further research, first-hand experience and some rather testing personal struggles enabled me to write more extensively about Thailand in Volume 2 and Volume 3 which can be pre-ordered now in advance of release.

book-cover-2017

Driving Thailand pre-release date stands on Amazon Best Sellers Rank:

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Thailand in Perspective pre-release date stands on Amazon Best Sellers Rank:

Coming Soon

Following the republished diaries I intend producing 2 more FREE publications. The first will be a collection of 20 of my favourite poems, some of which you will find here on my blog, the others are unpublished. This will be followed by a short story as yet unpublished. Details of these publications will be posted here on my blog and on social media.

Debut Novel

My debut novel is targeted for publication this year and you’ll be the first to know.

So to make sure you are notified click FREE – Blog updates in the left sidebar.

In the meantime enjoy 15 WEEKS and pre-order Volume 2 and Volume 3 if you wish.

15 Weeks – Republished 2017 – FREE

15 WEEKS  has been republished and is available on 16th February.

As I move towards the final stages of completing the first draft of my novel I needed to take a little time out to start developing my Facebook author page and re-publish my Thailand Diaries which has been on my mind for some time. The repub is now done and the three ebooks, published by Pronoun, are now all FREE. They can be found at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Apple iBooks and Google play. If you click where you see the link underlined you will be transported to my book page where you can choose your favourite retailer. Continue reading 15 Weeks – Republished 2017 – FREE

I’m back – But not yet fully functional!

It seems like a lifetime but it is only five months since I posted ‘Taking a break’ on October 17.

Only now do I realise that post was inaptly titled. The five months have been anything but a break; more a physical and mental ordeal I promise myself never to undertake again.

House warming
House warming

I have now built two houses in Thailand which, for an amateur developer, is quite a daunting challenge. Both have been vastly different experiences and I could easily write two books; novels even!!

Forgetting the novels for a moment, my first book would be entitled ‘How NOT to build a house in Thailand’, which would be the ‘go to’ bible for any unsuspecting ex-pat attempting the feat for the first time.

The sequel ‘Second time lucky’ would be a definitive guide on how to learn from your mistakes, proof that miracles do happen and the impossible is not.

From the back garden and Lam Yai farm
From the back garden and Lam Yai farm

I can chuckle now when I recall an American gentleman, a few years younger than me, saying “You are only managing the project, I take it.” Experience has taught me that if you want the house to be built to a reasonable standard you have to roll your sleeves up.

Fortunately I have always benefited from physical activity and am a great believer in the importance of maintaining fitness throughout life. So undertaking the strain, even at the ripe old age of 73, was not actually a consideration. Perhaps it should have been; but I feel fine although 5 kgs lighter and a little weary. No doubt it will pass.

Builders finishing up party. (They had more than one!!)
Builders finishing up party. (They had more than one!!)

For now it’s time to return to a more sedate life, not forsaking daily exercise – walking and swimming – of course. I’m not surprised that the lack of stimulation I get from writing and photography has left me a little flat. Now that my focus is shifting back to my passions I’m sure my creative juices will flow again.

I am ready for action on the writing front; mentally that is. I say that because my PC, despite hours of coaxing, debugging and frustration, has decided to ‘go slow’. It is now about as fast as a one-legged tortoise on Valium! The fix is in the mix and will be done by early May when everything will be up to F1 standard.

After that, I promise that I will be doing my utmost to publish more works of interest for the small but loyal number of readers who seem to enjoy my writing and photography. I’m not sure but maybe I’ll seriously consider those house books!

However, my first job is to complete the publication of Volume Three of ‘Thailand Diaries’. In the meantime I plan to post some poems, some written, some in process, plus some short stuff which my dysfunctional PC may just be able to handle.

For now I’ll leave you with this thought;

“Life is like climbing a mountain. You spend the whole time trying to reach the summit. When you eventually do it’s time to come down and die.”

How I remembered TRINIDAD CARNIVAL 1982 by restoring old photos

In 1980 a friend of mine married a Trinidadian girl and two years later they invited me to visit them in St. Johns, Port of Spain for a three week holiday taking in the world famous annual Trinidad Carnival.

I'm watching you
I’m watching you

My wife and I stayed with the family and became totally immersed in the whole Carnival tradition and atmosphere at grass roots level. From the day we arrived until the day we left the island to return to England, we were involved in virtually every aspect of the Carnival, which was in full swing. Continue reading How I remembered TRINIDAD CARNIVAL 1982 by restoring old photos

Mark Twain on religion

Portrait of Samuel Clemens as a youth holding ...
Portrait of Samuel Clemens as a youth holding a printer’s composing stick with letters SAM. Daguerreotype; sixth plate. Plate mark: Scovill. Inscribed in case well: G.H.[?] Jones Jonco? / Hannibal Mo / 1850 / Nov. 29th. On case pad: Samuel L. Clem-/ens – [illegible] / Taken Dec. 1850 / Age 15. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Samuel Clemens was born in Missouri in 1835 and when he became a writer he adopted the pen name Mark Twain. He was called the father of American literature and died in 1910.

 mark twain Category:Mark Twain images

Mark Twain images (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Tom Sawyer, Huckleberry Finn, and Becky Thatch...
Tom Sawyer, Huckleberry Finn, and Becky Thatcher in Injun Joe’s cave. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I remember, as a boy, reading Tom Sawyer and Huckleberry Finn and recall, without hesitation, that I thoroughly enjoyed them both. However, nearly sixty years have passed since then and I could not possibly remember why. It seems it was just so. Recently I discovered that Mark Twain, even though he was not believed to be an atheist, had very strong views on religion. In an excellent article, from Brain Pickings, his views are well documented and make for fascinating reading.