Hi and welcome. My name is Nic (Nicholas ) and I live and work in the Philippines. I grew up as a young boy into a teenager on Thursday Island in the Torres Straits of North Queensland. This was Australia in the sixties and seventies, and it was a time of sea, the islands and sunshine. It became an important and formative part of my life, filled with days of swimming, spear fishing, cycling, exploring old war-time forts, ship-wreck fossicking, digging up old settlements and living in the outdoors.
As a teenager, I joined the Royal Australian Navy for junior officer training, and left as a Sub-Lieutenant after six years of interesting training and wonderful experiences and friendships.
Responding to my fascination with plants and animals, I embarked on a professional agricultural career and gained several degrees and to date, have worked in ten countries. I now work in Mindanao, Southern Philippines engaged in international development work in agriculture. I am married with two young kids.
I use my experiences in writing with great effect, of having lived and worked in challenging and dangerous locations across Asia and the Pacific. I feel that I have developed a great sensitivity and empathy for the cultures, languages, histories, food, religions, personalities, politics, peculiarities and the colour and vibrancy of these places and people. I try to make this come across in my writing, to make it vivid and the locations and characters realistic and believable. They arise from this great stock of experience and engagement with people across such diverse landscapes and communities. I use humour, tragedy, greed, love, hatred, hope and historical settings with great effect. I try hard to craft stories that entertain, inform and immerse the reader into the plot and to engage with the characters. My stories help the reader to suspend belief, and carry them on an adventurous journey to the cinematographic finish.
My work has taken me to, or allowed me to live in many truly memorable and fascinating locations and historical sites across the Asia Pacific Region. I have dived on wrecks, crawled through hundreds of war-time tunnels, walked through caves, and explored old monuments and temples across Asia and the Pacific Islands.
Thus far, I have written and published two novels to date. Black Hearts, Gold Warriors is my second novel and it tells the tale of the hunter and the hunted across the exotic and dangerous landscapes of Mindanao and Vietnam, from the close of WW2 to the start of the new millennium. It is an action adventure spiced with historical fiction and romance, with wonderful and heady scents and sounds of life in the colourful and vibrant world of SE Asia. My first book called Gold of the Generals, is being revised and will be re-released in May 2018 and it is a wonderful story of the hunt for war loot and treasures in the Philippines and Papua New Guinea.
I have read much and widely, and read a lot of ‘how to write’ books. But nothing can substitute for actual research, plotting and planning, writing, revising, reviewing, rewriting, reducing and careful editing experience. Developing one’s skills in the craft of writing and also the business of writing, which is the pathway I am now embarked upon. For me writing is often sheer hard work, requiring great discipline and consistent application. Just sitting down and putting words on paper, no matter how good or bad they may be. Many times I reach the ‘zone’ where words and thoughts just appear and my fingers do the work. That is the magic and mystery of writing. The beauty of it is how well our words and dialogues convey mood, images, thoughts, and sensory dimensions, to our readers. And transport them to other worlds of our making and their interpretation.
My writing is atmospheric and sensory, to put you in the scene. I put a lot of effort into character development to make them plausible and not just card board cut outs. I use dialogue to advance the plot and to set up tension. My intention is to make a story which is a ‘great read’ and highly enjoyable. Please take a look and decide for yourself.
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