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Gravesend author to have novel professionally published 40 years after first draft

PUBLISHED: 09:25 08 October 2015 | UPDATED: 12:36 08 October 2015

David John Griffin

David John Griffin

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David John Griffin first began writing The Unusual Possession of Alastair Stubb when he was a student four decades ago

The Unusual Possession of Alastair StubbThe Unusual Possession of Alastair Stubb

A Gravesend author is finally having a novel professionally published - four decades after penning the first draft.

David John Griffin, of Valley Drive, first began writing The Unusual Possession of Alastair Stubb when he was a student at Medway College of Art & Design 40 years ago.

He said: “I’ve been writing since I was 14 and I wrote 100 pages of a novella on my mother’s kitchen table.

“I’ve always wanted to be a writer but I didn’t do it to impress anybody, I was doing it for the joy of writing.”

The author spent years trying to get the gothic tale of murder, mystery and intrigue published, but suffered a number of setbacks which dented his confidence and caused him to give up creative writing for 20 years.

“At one point it took me to depression,” he admitted.

“I have a very patient wife and she must have heard me say ‘I give up’ so many times.

“A writer writes to be read, so it was a real blow when I couldn’t find a publisher. I was thinking ‘what’s the point?’ But now I’ve given up giving up.”

Mr Griffin, who has lived in Gravesend for most of his life, had to fine-tune the novel over time but insists the concept he first devised as a student remains.

“The original idea is there, it hasn’t changed an awful lot over that time, although there was a major plot flaw which only dawned on me about five years ago.

“Any author will tell you, you know your own writing inside out, it almost becomes like a script.

“You have to step back as if you were reading someone else’s work, and then you see where it needs improving.

“But I’m really pleased with the final product and it’s a great relief and a great joy to be finally getting it professionally published.

“I’ve landed on my feet, it’s just taken 40 years to get there.”

The book, published by Urbane Publications, will be available in November.

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