How they came about
When I met my predecessor Alastair Foreman at Brookwood church in 1988, on the day of my interview towards becoming curate in charge there, one of his comments was, "You could write a book here." He meant that there was only a limited amount of work to do. I felt rather disappointed at that thought, but the phrase stayed in my mind.
Three years later, I found I had a book inside me, and after a number of earlier attempts, The Priorities of Jesus was printed. I had never expected to write a book. I always had poor marks for English at school.
One response to The Priorities was that I wrote well, so I decided to try a novel. My aim was that if I could produce something of worth, it might serve to advertise The Priorities.
By that time, I was teaching piano in a school. One day, while travelling on a busy train to get there, I asked myself what the future might look like, and found myself imgining teenagers swooping around in the sky, wearing anti-gravity flying suits. This led to The Piano Teacher and its two sequels' The Inventor's Folly and The Investigator's Choice.
I thought I would not write again, but a few years later, out of my concern that humanity was rushing headlong into computerising everthing and everyone without heeding the possible dangers sufficiently, the story of When That Time Comes emerged.
Then more recently, I spotted the hint in Psalm eight that humanity has the stars under ourfeet, i.e. that we are going to walk all over the galaxies one day. So exciting! But this insight raised a question - if the speed of light is the limiting factor everyone believes it is, then how are we going to communicate between star systems? Radio waves will be far too slow. I found myself imaging a gun with a very long barrel, firing off message-bearing spaceships too small to be visible to the naked eye, and it led to The Garden of the Galaxy. Once again, there is a question mark about all the technology of the year 3000 plus - are we really any better off with all these marvellous inventions? What really matters to us deep down? These are themes I like to explore.
More recently I have written articles and two or three more short books. I wonder if there will be any more to come?
Thank you for your interest.