May 24 2013 Latest news:
Monday, December 17, 2012
An Ilford decorator has put his paintbrushes aside for the moment and penned two children’s book with his own illustrations which draw on his experience of London life.
Mark King, 34, from Highbury Gardens, Ilford, self-published The Bombay Bear and Creator’s Dream this year after being inspired by his daughter to write the children’s books and has been attracting a positive response from local nurseries.
The author, who goes by the pen name M.J. Higgy, said he has always had a talent for art.
He said: “I have always been able to draw, but I had never done anything with it. By just reading stories to my daughter I thought I could have a go at writing and doing it all myself.”
The aim of the books is to teach children “good values”, according to Mr King.
The decorator, who wrote the books in his spare time, said his life in London has helped shape his vision.
He added: “I write London books. I have grown up in the East End, in multicultural London, and I have seen that there are not many multicultural books about, so for me it is about showing that.”
His drawings are done with felt tip pens and he said the aim is to make the pictures “bright and colourful and quite striking”.
Both books are on sale, but Mr King has been handing some copies out to local nurseries to spread his message.
He said: “They got good feedback from people. I was pleasantly surprised. It is nice to actually know that people enjoy reading them.”
The latest book, Creator’s Dream, follows a paint maker who tries to make a white town colourful.
People are unhappy about the change and drive him out of town, but soon realise the impact of the changes he has made.
Mr King sees his writing developing as his daughter grows up.
He said: “It is mainly lessons I have learnt in life and just trying to pass it on to her through stories. When she is a teenager I will write books about being a teenager.”