I was born in Cumberland and spent my early years in the West Australian bush, returning to Britain at the end of the 1950s. After university in Durham I joined the Royal Navy, and over the next nine years gathered many fascinating experiences which are best told between the fifth and seventh gins at a cocktail party. (A few of the photos at the head of these pages I took when I was down South with HMS Endurance.)
When I came ashore I trained as a solicitor with a maritime law firm in London, and then spent many years as in-house lawyer with a global subsea engineering company. This broadened my pool of experiences greatly, took me to fascinating parts of the world – and stuck me in some remarkably dull meeting rooms.
I started writing on a flight to New York because I couldn’t find a book at the airport that suited my mood. It was a momentous flight because it turned round mid-Atlantic: something to do with US airspace being closed due to an accident involving a couple of aircraft and the World Trade Centre. The date was 11th September 2001 – or as it became popularly known, 9/11. Some ten years later, and with the help of a wonderful teacher in Argyll, my first book was published. Number two followed in 2012, number three (In the Shade of a Willow) the following year. That last has spawned a series of sequels which I have just completed – further details on the ‘My Writing’ page of this website.
My goal as I write is to achieve a roughly equal balance between storyline and character. It seems to be the bigger issues that inspire me – piracy, war, geopolitics – and I like to have a few thrills and spills along the way to liven things up a bit. But a good storyline won’t keep a single reader awake if s/he doesn’t care a hoot whether the characters live or die. So I hope above all to create characters that readers like and can identify with, and whose motivations the reader understands.
I hope you enjoy reading this website and, even more importantly, my books.