This autobiography about my prison service life and is my first book. Born 1951 in Tottenham England I am a family man and former prison officer. I have previously worked as a Telegraphist where I learned to touch type, very handy when it came to writing my book. I worked in the computer industry for several years and then as a driving instructor in London, but decided in 1983 that I needed a safer for of work so joined the Prison Service. I am happily married to a loving wife who I am lucky enough to be able to say is also my best friend. I have two step-daughters and four fantastic grandchildren. I have turned into my worst nightmare a doting grandad. I love all sports (Olympic Games in London 2012 was fantastic) particularly soccer, good wine, eating out, long lingering evening meals with good friends around the table. Holiday in the sun, and cruise holidays to see different places in the world.
It’s an autobiography of my twenty -five year career serving in Her Majesty’s Prison Service. A warts and all revelation of what really goes on behind the closed door of the UK’s penal establishments. The book charts my early career from 4 July 1993 until my subsequent disillusionment of the service and my eventual early retirement.
A chance meeting on holiday in Majorca changed my life forever and launched me into a 25 year career in a job that I never would have considered previously: working in Her Majesty’s Prison Service.
This book catalogues my personal experiences of working as a prison officer, from my early days at high security HMP Pentonville to my final years in therapy-based HMP Grendon. Filled with interesting observations and incidences, hilarious wind-ups and memorable characters, this autobiography is the story of a journey, from the happiest days in what will always be a potentially volatile environment to a complete state of disillusionment as an old dinosaur that no longer fitted into the modern prison service world.
The book is filled with amusing incidents and anecdotes in my early days through my promotions, running the London Marathon, meeting my wife until my complete disillusionment of how our prison service is being run.
You meet the characters that made our jobs more bearable, until their demise through political correctness gone mad.
How decisions at the top were made and changed at a moment’s notice to fulfil the ambitions of our politicians.
I give an honest account of my feelings, as someone who would never be a yes man and toe the party line, in the face of a constantly changing environment that had become increasingly controlled by political correctness gone mad and by budgetary needs rather than human needs.
I am a man who cared, and even though my heart was sucked out of my job, I never lost my dignity or respect. Most importantly, I would never allow myself to be reduced to just a turnkey.
Until I could take no more taking early retirement from a job I loved, my heart sucked out and my ambitions in tatters.
The book will make you smile and laugh and then cry and feel how I did, but then with renewed hope as I left to start a new life.
What inspires you to write?
People I am a people watcher I write about my own experience and what I observe with others behavior which is always fascinating
Tell us about your writing process.
I usually start with a chapter heading which is appropriate for the content of that chapter and then develop it into a complete story within each chapter
What advice would you give other writers?
Do it just make that start you always said you would. That is the secret so many of us say ‘I could write a book’ but they never make that important start.
Its a bit like starting that diet or that fitness regime making that first all important start.
How did you decide how to publish your books?
To be honest I had no experience so i sat down with the publishers and agents almanac and just started fireing off e-mails to the publishers that either accepted e-mail submissions or introductions.
No matter how many rejects I got and I got many but none ever said my book was rubbish and all offered some sort of encouragement, you must keep going. But also explore the self publishing route as there are so many guides out there to help you do it. In the end its your choice to self publish or try to get a publisher.
What do you think about the future of book publishing?
People will always want book but i do feel that the digital age will continue to grow, personally I have both Digital books are great for travelling but there is nothing like the feel of a book with pages actually in your hand or on your display, so I hope there is a compromise as i feel both have a place in the modern world.
What genres do you write?
What formats are your books in?
eBook, Print, Both eBook and Print
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