A man who has had his first novel published at the age of 56 will be signing copies in W. H. Smith in Grantham on Saturday.
Former King’s School boy Nick Barrett, who lived in Great Gonerby when he attended the school, has written a comic novel called Michaelmas Term (or - Why is That Boy Naked?). He will be sigiing copies between 11am and 1pm.
The book tells the story of Nicky who has inexplicably passed his scholarship exam and won a place at St Onans Academy. Now his friends think he is a snob and the posh boys think he is a yokel.
The book is full of weird and wonderful characters, including a serial escapologist and an alien.
Nick has lived in Essex for 17 years where he worked as a manager for the Royal Mail until retirement.
Before that he played drums in bands and was a session musician, stand-up comedian and roadie.
Nick has always been keen on writing and the bug began when he started writing lyrics for songs. He had been thinking seriously about writing a book for a few years and when he wrote a letter to his brother about his school years and totalled 2,000 words, he realised he might have something.
Nick said: “The story is based on King’s very loosely. The teachers at King’s were great. The quality of teaching was impeccable and it’s something you only appreciate later on.
“The story is based on one or two cirumstances I remember. The characters in the book are great fun and they basically wrote it for me. But it also deals with some darker issues. There is the class divide and also bullying.”
Nick hopes another three novels he has written, one for each term of the school year, will soon follow Michaelmas Term on the bookshelves.
Nick has two brothers, one in Grantham and another near Sleaford, and a sister in Kent. He lives with his partner and their cat in Harold Wood.
He said of his novel: “I feel very fortunate. There are a lot of authors out there trying to get their work published and I am sure a lot of it is good quality. I would say to them never give up and keep that self-belief.”
Michaelmas Term is available from bookshops, Amazon and publishers Pegasus at www.pegasuspublishers.com priced £10.99.
Nick has his own website at www.nicholasbarrett.co.uk