by Glover Wright
I was published right away with my first novel ‘THE TORCH’ so my transition from writing/performing music to writing thrillers occurred in one fell swoop. I became a full-time writer immediately. However, having had long-term ties to, and a deep love of, the entertainment world I actively retained my strong connections with that industry as performer, composer, record producer and consultant entertainment director, while still managing to complete and have eight successful novels published.
Music still keeps its firm grip on me: for example, my friendship with John Lennon and my involvement with the Beatles Apple Music project as composer and producer is still a leading question asked in interviews on my writing career. I always answer: There was no-one like John and never has been since his loss. I think of him often and miss him still – though his often-barbed wit and his unpredictability was difficult to take at times! I wouldn’t have missed the experience of knowing him, though. Those were amazing if chaotic days, all the way from Beatles pre-fame Hamburg days to later mega-success and massive fame the world over and the birth of Apple Corps in all its psychedelic glory in London.
The other “music “question I always get asked is: Do you still perform these days? Yes, I do, but now only for charities of my choosing when I enjoy drawing in generous sponsors to aid their fund-raising. I love music and can’t escape it. In my study my over-filled bookshelves share space with cherished vintage guitars, an old trumpet, and a piano gifted to me years ago by my longtime friend, Harry Patterson – better known the world over as best-selling author “Jack Higgins”. Oh! and by the way – this for the petrol-heads out there – a couple of Formula One Grand Prix winner’s helmets presented to me by GP legend David Coulthard . . . but that’s a story for another day!
So, how did I come to the decision to set down my Fender Stratocaster, professionally that is, and lift a writer’s pen instead?
Well, I decided I was a novelist at heart and was determined, driven even, to realize that aim – not a dream, definitely an aim – in as professional a manner as possible. I believe firmly that a novelist’s experience is his collateral for his writing and once I had the idea for my first novel ‘THE TORCH’ in my mind I set about gaining the real-life experience I would need to be able to write it convincingly. “Suspension of disbelief,” is my mantra. I write, always, with that firmly in mind. My reader has to believe that my fiction could happen as real-world fact. This is of critical importance to me.
So now we get to the when and where?
As fate would have it, the experience I needed to write ‘THE TORCH’ was closer than I thought. As I neared the end of a performing engagement in the Middle-East, I found British special forces soldiers – both seconded SAS and contract – in my show’s audience, taking an R&R break from the brutal rebel war being fought in nearby Oman. I bonded instantly with these extraordinary men and when my engagement ended took a gamble and broke from music to spend time with them on their ground. The experience I gained planted the seed that grew in time into ‘THE TORCH’.
It was much later, with my rough first-draft for the novel under way, written in a small granite cottage in the British Channel Island of Jersey that, by pure chance – fate perhaps? – I met world best-selling author Jack Higgins at a beachside café. We got talking and my Oman experience came up, which interested him greatly. We met again later at his invitation in his new home in Jersey, where, by the pool under the warm Jersey sun I showed him some faded Polaroid pics taken during my Oman experience and later, work I had done on the first draft of ‘THE TORCH’. He said it had potential, though overwritten, and showed me where and what to cut. Ruthlessly! No sparing of feelings. Tough stuff to take, but necessary. At that moment I probably had the most expensive (certainly the most famous) editor in the world! It was a heady feeling.
Much later, with the first draft done “Jack” – or Harry as I came to know him as our friendship grew – recommended me to his literary agents in London, who, on receiving the completed manuscript from his hand on a trip over there, read it and had an offer from the first publisher to receive it, G.P. Putnam’s Sons in the USA, then Hutchinson in the UK. Foreign rights translations followed and we were off and running!
So, as I said at the start: I was in the right place at the right time! Everything in my writing career has followed on from my experience in the wadis of Oman with those extraordinary special forces soldiers and, later, that fateful beachside meeting with Jack Higgins in Jersey where I now live permanently and where ‘HARD ACT’ my new, ninth, thriller was conceived and completed . . . the only one with a leading character being a rock musician and song-writer. Closes the circle, you might think?
No! There’s plenty more to come . . .
Have a great day – and I hope you enjoy ‘HARD ACT’ if you get to read it. I really enjoyed writing it!
With writing in mind, he broke from music in the 1970’s and spent time with contract soldiers and British SAS units in Oman, resulting in his debut novel The Torch, which was accepted immediately by Putnam USA and published worldwide including many translations. During his extended period in the Middle East he met many figures later to shape world events, including Libya’s Moammar al-Gaddafi and in Beirut’s celebrity-haunt nightclub Le Cave de Roy was invited – after being recognized and asked to perform a song on stage – to join the table hosted by a wealthy young Saudi Arab named Osama Bin Laden.
Glover Wright has had eight novels published to date and lives now in Jersey, British Channel Islands. He still performs musically at charity fund-raisers for servicemen and women wounded in action and is proud to do so.
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Glover's Newest Heart-Pounding Thriller: Hard Act
Loner, Agent Ben Markstein, betrayed and primed for retribution by his obsession with the Pakistani beauty at the dark heart of HARD ACT, an unsanctioned covert black operation planned by former US Senator Wendell Strachan to save the president and regain the $25,000,000 held in a Liechtenstein bank account by Saudi Prince Faisal bin Sharif, CEO of a billion-dollar Islamic charity trust and secret terrorist money-launderer.
Markstein learns that Serena Lashari, the beautiful, clever, successful Geneva-based fund-manager is Prince Faisal’s lover and has the account codes. He acts ruthlessly, manipulating Wendell Strachan and the black operation to win Serena and the money for himself.
Against a background of political conspiracy and escalating violence across Europe, culminating in potential catastrophe at a nuclear-armed U.S.A.F air-base in England, Ben Markstein plays HARD ACT’s ruthless game to win – even at the cost of the lives of all who stand in his way.