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Thursday 5 December 2019

From South Africa to Rosslare for writer William

William Paterson, whose first book is now on sale
William Paterson, whose first book is now on sale

Maria Pepper

William Paterson, a native of South Africa living in Rosslare, has embarked on a new career as a writer and has just published a novel 'The Snake in the Signal Box' which is now on sale.

The novel is the first book in the Kirkwood Trilogy, a rich and colourful tale set in the Natal in the post-war years between 1919 and 1946, with the second book due to follow in a few months time.

The setting is inspired by William's time growing up in KwaZulu-Natal in South Africa. Born in Durban, he lived with his parents, sister, servants and animals in an old colonial hilltop house with acres of garden overlooking the Umgeni River valley and the Indian Ocean.

His father had fought in East Africa and went farming in Zululand before the Great Depression forced him to give up the farms.

William was went to Michaelhouse, a private boarding school in Natal midlands where he rubbed shoulders with Wilbur Smith, a contemporary, and other children whose fathers were away at war.

By the time the second world war had ended, he was studying at the School of Art in Durban and then on scholarship in London. On his return, he joined the Natal Daily News and later the Friend Newspaper Group (founded by Rudyard Kipling) in Bloemfontein.

He spent the rest of his working years in the media, after studying Business Administration and reading for a Communications Degree at UNISA which led him to found a communications company in Johannesburg.

He and his wife Patricia now live in Rosslare where he spends his days researching and writing, with walks on the beach in the early mornings. He is currently working on the second book in the trilogy.

He and Patricia had two children but their daughter was killed in a road accident in the English Lake District. Their son lives in London and is a specialist in ancient Chinese furniture.

The Snake in the Signal Box is in paperback published by Amazon and associated companies and is also on Kindle. It is available in the Book Shop, Wexford and both the paperback and Kindle version are available from Wexford Library (as well as the America Library in Paris!).

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