I don’t pretend to be a world class writer but I enjoy creative writing as a hobby. I’ve written and self published a children’s fantasy adventure, ‘The Ethereal Realms’ and a small poetry collection called ‘Cross-Cascade’. I wrote the children’s tale in 2003 during a difficult period in my life. I stood on the beach in my hometown of Worthing in West Sussex one day and looked up at the sky, and said to God: ‘I’ve had enough. I want to be with you in heaven’. There were clouds in the blue sky above the sea that morning, and I remember looking at them and feeling a sense of elation at the thought of being transported upwards to where Jesus dwells. Imagine that! Just being with him fully, away from all the pain. It was a moment of freedom that truly inspired me.
Around the same period of time, a proofreader called Jill suggested that I try writing a children’s book. That thought of being in heaven with Jesus, away from the turmoil of life, had really grabbed me. I don’t know why but I began thinking about how children in certain situations suffer so much but how being with Jesus changes everything. And that’s how the idea for the story came about. The first edition was published in 2014 (yes, it took a while…) but it was clunky and so a second edition has now been published via Kindle Direct Publishing (Amazon). My wife Celine created a beautiful front cover illustration, using her artistic/graphic design skills. I’m happy with the final result and I can’t believe it’s nearly 20 years since I first wrote it! No, I am not in the top sellers list (very few copies have been bought) but it’s been a great experience to do something so creative. I am also thrilled that my own children have been reading it and I hope it will help them in their own walk with God.
Poetry is another passion of mine. I completed an Oxford University Writing Poetry course in 2021 (I passed it but the tutor wasn’t too complimentary about my work!), which did help me understand more about poetic techniques. I am still learning but I find writing poetry is a wonderful vehicle for self expression, especially for my relationship with God.
Cross-Cascade is a collection of poems I’ve written about the effect of the cross. We often hear about the ‘power of the cross’ and I am captivated by the depth of discovering what that really means. How can you ever begin to really weigh it up and understand it fully? Hugh MacDiarmid, the Scottish poet, wasn’t a Christian (as far as we know, I’m happy to be corrected) but I remember reading ‘A Drunk Man Looks at the Thistle’ when I was at university and these wonderful words have always stayed with me: ‘But let my soul increase in me, God dwarfed to enter my puir thocht / Expand to his true size again’. I am probably taking his perspective out of context but that notion of God dwarfing himself down to our level (which He did in Jesus) so that He could pull us up to His level, is so powerful. And that’s what’s behind Cross-Cascade: the gospel pulls us up. We can’t quantify the Holy Spirit – He is like a waterfall cascade calling us to trust Him: to jump in and swim. Following Jesus is breathtaking in that respect. Words fail to capture the truth of it all fully but poetry is a helpful device for me to express heartfelt thanks for the dynamic love of Christ at work in my life.
Cross-Cascade has also been published via Kindle Direct Publishing [see below], and I’ve also put up a short story (Kindle only) called For the Earth, about the Great War. Other creative writing projects I am currently working on: a poetry collection called ‘Stone Rolls’, in a sense a sequel to Cross-Cascade, which explores the powerful aftermath of Christ’s resurrection. I’m also excited to be writing an adult novel about a criminal who falls into a time machine and gets transported back 2,000 years – it’s called ‘Salvo in Galilee’. I’m hoping to visit Israel for research purposes! There’s also a sequel to The Ethereal Realms, which is mainly drafted.
If you are interested in reading my published work to date, copies can be ordered via these links:-
The Ethereal Realms
A Christian children’s adventure book to help youngsters know Jesus Christ… Welcome to the hidden world of The Ethereal Realms! Four adventurous orphans – Pelumi, Kezia, Rory and Lily – reside with cruel Mrs Greep at a care home in Worthing, West Sussex, England. Mr. Dog, an Alsatian, also lives with them and he is famous for enjoying refined food, fighting with his pearl-white teeth and barking at lady dogs. One day the youngsters see a giant dragonfly craft swoop in off the sea. A strange man jumps off and hurries past. But not before he traps Mr. Dog in a net! He is later seen stealing a diamond from a museum when the young friends visit during an excursion with Abraham Owen, a local tramp. The children and Mr. Dog follow the thief and stow away on board the big dragonfly. They end up in a mysterious world, split into three lands, hidden in the Big Cloud which hovers above Earth. They later learn that the beautiful Third Realm dominated by Mt Xion, the majestic mountain, is where the Awesome Good Presence resides – the Creator of the Universe. The Second Realm is inhabited by the Jeru, a friendly race who guard the Land of Light against the creatures of the Dark Land on the First Realm, also known as Gehenna. The children become Celestial Knights after learning about the sacrifice of Godwithus, the Awesome Good Presence in human form. A tremendous battle follows when Ragaar, the troll overlord, plots to become king of the Dark Land. The story ends… well, read ‘The Ethereal Realms’ – and find out!
Cross-Cascade: a poetry collection
A small collection of poems exploring the changed reality bought for us by Jesus Christ’s sacrifice on the cross. The title poem, ‘Cross-Cascade’, has also featured in ‘God and Nature‘ online magazine in the USA.
For the Earth: A Great War tale (fiction) (Short Stories Book 1)
Millions of soldiers died in horrific circumstances during the First World War. ‘For the Earth’ is a fictional short story giving an imaginative window into trench warfare. The story focuses on a character called Adam Knight as he goes ‘over the top’ and searches for hope in the face of unbelievable suffering.