It was turning 50 that gave Michael Kirby the push he needed to achieve a long-held ambition.
A keen reader of crime fiction, Michael had often talked of writing a novel but lacked the drive to do it until his 50th birthday loomed.
“I think my wife, Rebecca, was fed up of me talking about it but not doing anything about it. One day she told me to get on with it before I reached my 50th birthday.”
Michael took up the challenge and within six months he had written his first novel, ‘Never Forgiven, Never Forgotten’, a detective thriller set in a Yorkshire town.
“Once I set my mind to it, I really enjoyed it. I would come home from work, sit down at the computer and try to produce a few hundred words each day,” said Michael of Sandholme Crescent, Hipperholme.
A fan of the TV series ‘Lewis’ and books by Stuart MacBride and Wilbur Smith, Michael tells the story of Detective Dave Ashby and his ‘sidekick’ Steve Armstrong as they embark on a race against time to catch a killer - before more bodies pile up.
Michael, who works for a chemical distribution firm, has so enjoyed the writing process that he is already 20,000 words into his next novel, ‘A Death Sentence Shared’ which continues with the character of Det Ashby.
Initially he produced the book for Kindle readers but has now had copies published with a an atmospheric cover photograph that he took himself during an early morning walk on the Stray at Lightcliffe.
The book will be on sale on Saturday at Rebecca’s shop - Crystal Wishes, Park Street, Brighouse - and £1 from all sales will go to the Friends of Highbury School.