NIK MORTON

Writer & illustrator


A brief biography

Nik Morton - contact me on mortonnik@gmail.com

Way back in the middle of last century, although I enjoyed writing and illustrating, I felt that I wasn't going to earn a good living from either so I started work as an office clerk. Then in 1965 I joined the Royal Navy as, appropriately, a Writer.

In my 23 years of Service I was fortunate enough to travel to many exotic places, among them Rawalpindi, the Khyber Pass, Sri Lanka, Tokyo, Zululand, Mombasa, Bahrain, Tangier, Turkey, Norway, Finland, South Georgia and the Falklands. All useful material for writing stories.

My home town is Whitley Bay, Tyne & Wear but due to naval commitments most of my adult life was spent in Hampshire or abroad. I married Jennifer, a lecturer in Spanish and French, and we have one daughter, Hannah.

On retiring from the Navy, I went into IT as an analyst programmer. Throughout my time in the Navy and afterwards, I continued to write and draw. At one time I was the World Authority on Webb Patent Gas Sewer Lamps - see the article at the link on the left. I took a writing correspondence course and was so successful at the time that I was asked to tutor for them, but my naval commitments precluded taking on that job. Over the years, I edited several Naval establishment and ship magazines and also a small press magazine, Auguries.

When my second IT redundancy came along, I felt that it was a hint to change career direction and seek out a writing job, perhaps with a magazine. Luckily, I met up with an old acquaintance, Bob Jenkins, and he took me on as the sub-editor of his fledgling magazine, The Portsmouth and District Post. I also contributed articles, stories and artwork.

Ultimately, Jen and I planned to emigrate to Spain in 'retirement' but this was brought forward two years early and we moved to the Alicante region in December 2003. Happily, Bob kept me on as sub-editor and I was able to work for the magazine through a Broadband connection until - sadly - the print version of the magazine finished with issue #48, October/November 2007 (a shame they didn't get to #50).

Now that Hannah and her husband Harry have also moved out to Spain we feel we are fully settled in our new home and country. In September 2008 we became proud grandparents with the birth of Darius.

Now I have more time to devote to writing. I contribute to magazines in the UK and Spain; in February 2011 I will step down after 5 years as Chairman of the Torrevieja Writers' Circle. I occasionally advise on manuscripts and filmscripts.

In 2006 I was joint runner-up in the Harry Bowling Prize with the early chapters of my thriller Pain Wears No Mask, now published by Libros International. In May 2007 I was 3rd in the international writing competition 'Torrevieja - Another Look' with the short story 'The Busker of Torrevieja' and also short-listed with the story 'When the flowers are in bloom', which is set in Japan. 2008 was a good year, in which I saw my fourth book published. My fifth book was published in May 2009 and my sixth came out in November 2009. Since then, I've sold my ninth and tenth books and the western anthology makes eleven with my bylines (three different pennames!)

After my fourth book was accepted (two by Libros, two by Hale), I was asked to become an editor for Libros International, based in the Costa Blanca and this lasted till Libros ceased operating in 2010.

In 2007 I co-edited Express Westerns's anthology Where Legends Ride and in 2009 edited the follow up, A Fistful of Legends.

In December 2010 I took over the reins from Gary Dobbs to become chief editor of Solstice Publishing's western imprint Solstice Westerns

On 1 February 2011 I was hired as the Editor in Chief of Solstice Publishing, to handle all manuscript submissions. A new imprint was created in early 2013 - Solstice Shadows, which I don't handle...

I stepped down from Chairmanship of the Torrevieja Writers' Circle after 5 years.

In July 2013 I stepped down from EIC Solstice to allow myself time to pursue several other creative projects.

This year saw the publication of my writing guide (suitable for all genre fiction) WRITE A WESTERN IN 30 DAYS - WITH PLENTY OF BULLET POINTS!

2014 saw the publication of the following books - THE MAGNIFICENT MENDOZAS, SUDDEN VENGEANCE, WINGS OF THE OVERLORD, THE PRAGUE PAPERS and CATALYST

2015 saw the publication of the following books - CATACOMB and CATACLYSM

2016 sees the publication of COFFIN FOR CASH , the twelfth book in the Cash Laramie and Gideon Miles series of noir westerns.

Snapshots

2014

Catalyst published by Crooked Cat Publishing

The Prague Papers e-book published by Crooked Cat

Sudden Vengeance published by Crooked Cat Publishing

Wings of the Overlord

The Magnificent Mendozas

Short story 'Sleep well, my darling' published in Noir Nation #4

2013

Odd Shoes and Medals published

Write a Western in 30 Days published

Spanish Eye (with extra story) published November 2013 by Crooked Cat Publishing.

Blood of the Dragon Trees published by Crooked Cat Publishing.

Acceptance for 19th (Wings of the Overlord) and 20th (The Magnificent Mendozas) due for publication June and July 2014 respectively.

Short story 'Hazard' features in the anthology Living on Jacks and Queens due out December 2013.

2012

BULLETS FOR A BALLOT published, a Cash Laramie e-book western OLD GUNS published by Robert Hale Black Horse Western5 2011

Fifth western Old Guns accepted by Robert Hale, published 2012.

Anthology When the Flowers are in Bloom published as an e-book in aid of Japanese survivors of March disaster Short story 'Silence' published in the westerneers anthology The Traditional West 2010

January.

Won the bookawards prize 2010 for the short story 'Codename Gaby'

Assignment Kilimanjaro novel accepted by Xcite ebooks.

Spanish Eye, a collection of 21 stories featuring Leon Cazador, PI published as paperback by Solstice Publishing; rights returned 2013.

A Sudden Vengeance Waits, a vigilante crime novel published as paperback by Solstice Publishing; rights returned 2013.

February.

Fourth western Blind Justice at Wedlock accepted by Robert Hale.

March.

Assignment Kilimanjaro published as an e-book.

April.

The Prague Manuscript won the April bookawards.

100th short story published.

May.

Spanish Eye, a collection of 21 stories featuring Leon Cazador, PI accepted by Solstice Publishing.

A Sudden Vengeance Waits, a vigilante crime novel set on the south coast of England accepted by Solstice Publishing.

Create a Free Website