A former Wigan journalist is preparing to send young readers off on a spectacular fantasy adventure with his first children’s book.
Gerry Sammon, who worked at the Wigan Post and Wigan Observer in the 1980s, has written Wolf Boy for bookworms aged between around 10 and 13.
The story follows Connor, who goes blind but is given mystical seeing ability, and a couple of other youngsters who are transported by a wolf into a strange world where they must battle for survival.
The novel, which will be released later this month after being picked up by a US publisher, originally came from a series of strange dreams Gerry’s daughters had as small children.
The Bolton-based writer, who now teaches journalism at universities and training centres, said: “Don’t ask me to explain why but when my daughters were very young they both used to have this nightmare of a wolf in the wardrobe. That’s where this story starts and it eventually developed into this full-blown fantasy land of talking wolves and monsters.
“It’s for young readers who like a bit of adventure with some battles thrown in.”
It’s for young readers who like a bit of adventure with some battles thrown inGerry Sammon
Wolf Boy follows Connor as the four-legged creature of the title emerges from his wardrobe and transports him to pick up his best friend Eveline and the school bully Billy.
The three children and the animal then make a magical journey along a golden path to Lupusopolis, a city where talking wolves fight fierce battles against forest monsters led by an evil human.
This unusual tale is not Gerry’s first foray into fiction, having already self-published a thriller for adults called The Royle Deception which will hit the shelves in a revised form next year.
Wolf Boy, which is published under his pen-name GD Sammon to differentiate his children’s and adult fiction, has been picked up by Texas-based Black Rose Writers and Gerry, 62, is excited by the firm’s international reach, which will see booksellers in Australia, the USA and Britain stocking it.
He says getting into print has been a long-held ambition and he is now waiting to see what the response to the different books is like before committing fully to his next project.
He said: “I think it’s probably the ambition in the background of most journalists to write books. There’s also the old saying that there’s a book in every one of us,
“Writing for children is a different discipline, you have to be a bit more explanatory and can’t always assume things. I enjoyed the experience, even more so now I know it will be out there.
“I’ve got a sequel to my first adult book in the very early stages but there may also be a sequel to the children’s one. There are a few other irons in the fire that I’m thinking of getting to grips with as well.”
Wolf Boy by GD Sammon is out on Thursday. To find out more or pre-order the book at a discount visit www.blackrosewriting.com/childrens-booksya/wolfboy