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Brighton to London commute inspires author
Many commuters pass the time travelling into London every day by burying their head in a good book. But one author used the time to create his own potential bestseller.
Nigel Summerley said his new novel was written over a year commuting between Brighton and London.
And rather than being distracted by the chatter of his fellow passengers on their mobile phones or by music blaring from their headphones, the 62-year-old said being on the train helped to focus his mind.
The Woodingdean father-of-three, who has previously worked for the Evening Standard, the Daily Telegraph and the Daily Express, describes his debut novel Like A Flower as a story of “life, death, love and gardening”.
Mr Summerley, from Falmer Gardens, said: “I spent so many hours travelling, thanks to frequent delays and late running, that I decided to stop moaning and use the time creatively.
“I did think of dedicating the book to First Capital Connect, but quickly thought better of it.
“I found being on the train was the only place I could write.
“I’m cut off from everything else – it became my equivalent of an office or my garden shed.
“I’m writing a new novel now but finding it much harder to write because I’m not using the train as much.”
A journalist of 40 years’ experience, Mr Summerley said Brighton residents might be able to identify some of the locations in the book despite them being disguised and renamed.
He said the areas of the South Downs near his home were of particular inspiration.
He added: “The story is basically a whodunnit and a thriller, but I hope it also has a deeper and more philosophical subtext which will especially strike a chord with gardeners.
“It’s not in the strict sense of the term a gardening book although a garden and the love of gardening are at the heart of the story.”
Like A Flower is being published as an eBook by WritersReadersDirect on October 29.
The book is priced at £4.99 and will be available from early November on Amazon, iBookstore and WH Smith’s eBooks.