I am not one of those authors who can sit down and somehow magic wonderful prose from nothing
Time Out Bahrain staff
I am not one of those authors who can sit down and somehow magic wonderful prose from nothing; I have to think carefully about every single word I write and sentence I construct. I don’t have much of an education, just a handful of O levels, and so writing definitely doesn’t come naturally for me. And because it doesn’t come naturally, I tend to find other things to do and put off writing until the very last minute. But once I start writing, I don’t seem to be able to stop; it becomes a compulsion.
I always remember wanting to be a writer, ever since I was about twelve years old. But the world took me on a different route entirely and I never put word on paper again for almost thirty years until the security company I was working for got sold and I found myself out of work. I then bumped into a friend who had just had his book published and he introduced me to his publisher who was fascinated with my rather unorthodox and unusual life of security and personal protection – and a book contract quickly followed.
After my first book Doing The Doors I never ever expected to write any more, yet seven years and six books later I now find myself editing The Mammoth Book of the World’s Toughest and seem to have developed a name for myself within this very particular non-fiction marketplace. Over the last few years Doing the Doors has kind of evolved into a cult ‘must have’ book for nightclub doormen (and doorwomen, of which surprisingly there are thousands). I am constantly amazed that people actually like my work and I find that both completely mystifying and utterly humbling.
When I lived in England I had a little study which was my comfortable bolt-hole where I could escape to and work. But since moving to Bahrain last year I don’t have the luxury of a study so I work wherever I can, often taking my laptop down to the pool area where the sounds of the fountains and the birds motivate me.
I have decided that the Mammoth Book will be my very last book in this genre and once finished I am going to try to become a ‘real’ writer and perhaps turn my attention to fiction. Robin Barratt’s latest book Respect and Reputation will be published by Apex in hardback on June 4. Signed copies of this and his other titles will be available from mid June from all Jashanmal Bookstores in Bahrain.