One question constantly asked is: Are you Jack Muir, the protagonist of your two novels, Boy on a Wire and To the Highlands?
The answer is: No.
Jack is a character in two books. I am a living human being.
Do our lives bare any comparison? Yes, they do.
I was made to join a bank because I failed school and the bank sent me to the Pacific, specifically, Papua and New Guinea.
After one year I came home a bloody mess and within two months my entire life had collapsed and my doctor supplied me with powerful medications.
Jack Muir is forced to join a bank because he failed school and he is then sent to an unnamed Pacific island where his life plummets and he has a breakdown.
My breakdown certainly changed my life.
Will it change Jack's?
We all hope so and a number of readers have yelled at me: Jon, give the poor bugger a break. How much misery can you pile on a bloke? For god's sake, can we have a happy ending in the next book?
But that's the way, often, isn't it, the only way a bloke will change is if you pile on the pressure. Jack has been a bit slow coming to terms with his true self, he's been living a lie, so I had to lay it on hard, fast and thick.
Don't think for a minute I don't love the fella, I do. He's the son I should have had, my father might have said if he'd lived long enough to meet Jack.
Here's the promise: The next novel in the trilogy will have a happy ending.
I can do nothing more.