Alfie Norrington was born into poverty in London’s East End in the first minute of the twentieth century. His life was a battle. From the Brick Lane markets where young Alfie pilfered and pickpocketed, to the trenches of Flanders, Alfie fought every step of the way.
Almost killed by a trench bomb he battled to recover and while in a military hospital Alfie made a promise that dramatically change’s his life. A true East End hero, Alfie begins his journey away from poverty armed with a robust moral compass and an open heart.
Becoming Alfie is the first in the Alfie Norrington series. It follows the life of a man who positively influenced thousands of people. The world needs more individuals like Alfie Norrington, that give much more than they take.
– When and where do you prefer to write?
In the evenings is my favourite time for writing. It is quieter, less demands on me from other sources and no point at which I need to stop. My office is my preferred place to write from. It is comfortable and familiar.
– Do you have a certain ritual?
I do. First thing in the morning I review what I wrote the previous evening accompanied by a cup of tea and, until recently, Harry the dog. This is followed by a walk either along a nearby beach or bush track. I am exceptionally lucky to live where I do as there are many inspirational walks. I construct the next chapter or so in my mind while walking and record the thoughts immediately I return home. I close the office door, not to return until that evening. Note. Harry the dog, also known in some circles as Harry H, lost his battle with Jaundice two weeks ago and at the age of 12 ½, was gently put to sleep. I miss him terribly as he was always with me when I wrote or walked, laying under my feet at my desk or walking alongside me each morning.
– Is there a drink of some food that keeps you company while you write?
I enjoy a glass or two of wine at the start of each evening session. I am a fan of Sauvignon Blanc particularly from the Marlborough region of New Zealand. Later in the evening a cup of tea is always welcomed, accompanied by a couple of biscuits or a slice of buttered toast.
– What is your favourite book?
Shantaram by Gregory Davis Roberts. An amazing tale and based on the Authors life events.
– Do you consider writing a different genre in the future?
Definitely. I don’t want to be restricted by genre and would like to experiment with my writing
– Do you sometimes base your characters on people you know?
Almost always but not on just one person. My characters are made up from bits and pieces of the people I know and have known in my life.
– Do you take a notebook everywhere in order to write down ideas that pop up?
I most certainly do, and I leave both voice and text messages for myself quite often to ensure I capture that creative material that pops out of my head at ridiculous moments.
– Which genre do you not like at all?
Fantasy with Vampires, ghouls and other goblins, if that is a genre. Just not for me.
– If you had the chance to co-write a book. Whom would it be with?
Charles Dickens. Now, I know that he no longer wanders about this planet but……to write alongside him, co-creating, would be a heavenly experience (‘scuse the pun).
– If you should travel to a foreign country to do research, which one would you chose and why?
It would be somewhere in the South Pacific, the Cook Islands or Tonga, but not for research. Sitting at a shady table, my laptop powered up, a cool trade wind blowing, the sound of the surf breaking on the surrounding coral reef 60 metres away. Add to this the delicious smells emanating the from the BBQ pit 50 metres behind me where a whole pig is gently roasting in preparation for tonight’s feast. I know my creative juices would flow, along with the tide in and out of the lagoon and the delightful smells wafting on the breeze from the BBQ. Heaven.
Thank you for your excellent questions, I hope you enjoy my responses.
Thank you, Neil Patterson and Rachel’s Random Resources
About the author
Born in South Essex close to the River Thames and directly East of London, my childhood was peppered with memories of the mighty river itself.
We would swim, fish and discover hidden treasure in the tidal mudflats with the fragments of clay pipes we found taking us back to another era. It was here that my inspiration for writing was born. I began to keep a diary of my observations from life and documented my feelings and thoughts.
My wife was twenty two and I was twenty four when we migrated to Australia with a glorious expectation. The sun was shining, the people were friendly and Sydney Harbour simply magnificent. Together we were committed to making the most of this opportunity beginning the next step in our lives. Everything was new which gave me endless writing opportunities that I recorded in my diary which had spilled over into a number of books. We travelled around this incredible country meeting people from all walks of life and from many nationalities. We lived and worked in a variety of capital cities enjoying each and every experience. All this was tremendous fodder for my writing.
I began to write short stories and poetry, none of which I sought to publish. By my fifty second birthday I was able to finish working and focus full time on my writing, the results so far are The Alfie Norrington Series with Becoming Alfie the first in the series of four. I hope that you enjoy reading Becoming Alfie as much as I did writing it.