Monks Eleigh: Determined writer self-publishes

WEST Suffolk writer Clive Sorrell is not someone who gives up easily.

Rather than be deterred when his manuscripts were rejected by agents, the author from Monks Eleigh took it upon himself to self-publish his work.

This month, his first full-length novel hits the shelves – a development he hopes will make the publishing world take notice.

Mr Sorrell, 70, took up writing fiction around five years ago after a long career in advertising.

But he found the sluggish economic climate has not been conducive to launching his name onto the literary scene.

He said: “In the last four years I have written five books but I’ve had no success with my approaches to literary agents and publishers.

“Most of them told me the economy and the recessional times were their main reasons for not taking on a new author.

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“Reading between the lines, it was clear they didn’t want to take on the financial risk.

“So I decided to self-publish with a company called Authorhouse. They have laid out and printed the book and helped with marketing.

“I’m hoping that publishing my novel this way will get the attention of publishers and give me some credibility when I approach them in the future.”

Mr Sorrell’s latest work is a crime adventure novel called Kawthar, which roughly translated from Arabic means ‘sacred river’.

The story features a Scottish geologist who is searching for water on the Arabian peninsula but whose wife instead finds a mysterious gold pendant that turns out to be a guide to Iram, a fabulous lost City of the Pillars, which, like Atlantis, disappeared more than 3,000 years ago.

While the story may be fictional, much of the colour and descriptions in the book are taken from Mr Sorrell’s experience of the Middle East.

In a career that has also seen him live and work in South Africa and Australia, he spent five years in both Saudi Arabia and Dubai.

He added; “ I didn’t start writing seriously until I retired but I spent a lot of time in these countries researching and gathering information for my work.

“They were fascinating places to live and rich in culture and heritage.”

Mr Sorrell, who moved to Monks Eleigh in 1984 and lives in the village with his wife Sophia, has previously self-published a collection of scary short stories based on “macabre and supernatural” tales.

He is also already working on a draft of his next novel, which is based around the youth culture of ton-up motorcyclists who made headlines in England in the 1960s.

n Kawthar is available through Amazon, Authorhouse and Barnes & Noble in hardback, paperback and e-book formats.

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