Philip Morrell. My writing life began during the 1980s when, as a producer and director for Television New Zealand, I developed scripts for TV commercials, promotional videos and road safety documentaries. Later, I turned to fiction, finding a lucrative niche writing short stories for women’s magazines.
In 1998 my wife and I moved from Christchurch to Blenheim, where I was employed as an advertising features writer at the Marlborough Express newspaper. After about a year, I decided that newspaper advertising no longer pressed my buttons, so I left to start my own business, MarlboroughNet Online Media, a website development company.
In 2010 I had an idea for a novel inspired by Charles Dickens’ Oliver Twist. After four years of (pleasurable) slog, I completed The Art of Dodging, the story of the Artful Dodger’s life after he had left the pages of Oliver Twist. I’m now working on two new manuscripts: the ‘back-story’ of Fagin, also from Oliver Twist, and the first of a series of spy novels set against the backdrop of the British Empire.
I live in Blenheim, New Zealand, with my wife, Suzie, and our two cats, Zöe and Honey. When I’m not writing, or don’t have my nose buried in a spy thriller, historical novel or a classic, I can be found in the garden playing with my succulents and cacti.