Tuesday, April 20, 2010
Author Spotlight: Triumphs and Tragedies: Twenty-Five Aspects of the Life of a Liverpool Sailor by Peter Wright
Barry Eva, the host of A Book and A Chat, described Triumphs and Tragedies: Twenty-five aspects of the life of a Liverpool Sailor. this way:
In Triumphs and Tragedies, Peter shares with us 25 different pieces of his life, from his early days and the loss at sea of his father, through in the hard drinking, hard living life of a Liverpool sailor.
I asked Peter why he felt compelled to share his stories. Here's what he said:
"...I have a deep-seated inner desire, to show the reader that we all experience our own triumphs and tragedies as our lives steal by us, and that they become the true fabric of which our characters are made. I think that it is not only freeing but rewarding to bare our souls to another human being. It is a way of forgiving ourselves.
And to other aspiring authors, like myself, these stories are demonstrations of how the simplest phase or chapter in our lives, can be written with an eye to the true detail."
Peter Wright was born in Wallasey, England in 1926, eight years after the end of World War 1, a conflict which left a profound impression on him, not only because his Uncle Tom had been killed during the last offensive, but because of the appalling slaughter that he, even at an early age, considered senseless. His father, a marine engineer, died at sea following a collision with another ship.
After six years at a Dominican boarding school for boys, Blackfriars, where his mother hoped he would enter the Catholic priesthood, he went to sea as a deck apprentice with Elder Dempster Lines of Liverpool. Three years after gaining his Masters certificate, he immigrated to the United States where he worked as Port Captain, Stevedore Superintendent and Marine Surveyor.
His social drinking at sea eventually turned into addictive drinking after his arrival in the U.S. It went ignored for several years, but loss of jobs and family made it clear that he was on the road to self-destruction. Frequent visits to hospital and Recovery Clinics and a deep-seated belief in his own spirituality convinced him that Alcoholics Anonymous was his only salvation. And that is where he got sober.
He retired in 1991 and lives in Northern California. You can find more about Peter and his work at his website.
To listen to Peter's interview with Barry Eva, click here.