As recently announced on this blog, my first novel, RUDE BOY, has just been re-released with a striking new cover (in both paperback and Kindle formats).
Something I have perhaps not mentioned (except in passing on the separate Rude Boy book website – see link in the Author section at foot of this page) is that a percentage of author profits from this novel will be donated to the UK homelessness charity, Centrepoint.
The release of the new cover for my book seems an appropriate time to explain my choice of Centrepoint as a recipient of a percentage of proceeds. I also made a promise to Rebecca Saleeb – a worker at Centrepoint (…hi Rebecca!) – that I would post this blog shortly after the new cover appeared…so here it is!
As a writer (albeit one of limited means!) I do like the idea that my books can somehow make a positive practical difference in the real (external) world as well as providing stimulus to the inner world of the imagination.
In the case of RUDE BOY, homelessness is a central theme within the novel. As the protagonist, Kenny Silvers, spirals downwards into increasing jeopardy and misfortune, it is no accident that his descent is exacerbated by his homeless status.
When I was a drummer in a university band (Secret Purple Monkeys) in the mid-late 1980s, we played a gig at the (then) main Centrepoint hostel in Central London. The Centrepoint folk were also kind enough to let us to use their basement as a practice facility. Hence, I have been familiar with the work of Centrepoint for over two decades. That is why I chose Centrepoint (from the several homelessness charities doing sterling work) as a recipient of donations from the bi-annual royalty payments I receive from sales of RUDE BOY.
Homelessness is a stain on any so-called ‘civilised’ society. It is particularly hard on young people – whose homeless status makes them especially vulnerable to harm, crime and exploitation. In my view, a roof over one’s head and a safe place to sleep is not only a basic human right but it also helps an individual bolster his/her sense of identity, confidence and social worth. Crucially, it helps people find (and retain) employment – and thus to ultimately stand on their own two feet. Centrepoint addresses such issues head on – and strives, in particular, to support homeless young people (like the character in my book, Kenny).
You can find out more about Centrepoint by clicking on the link contained in the charity’s logo (below) – clicking that image will take you straight to the Centrepoint website. I will also add a permanent link to Centrepoint’s site in the Author (links) section of my blog at the foot of this page.