John Gordon Davis

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John Gordon Davis, 73 is the author of 16 novel and has lived in the countryside near Coin (Malaga Province) for 36 years with his wife Rosemary. Born in Rhodesia, he published his first book ‘Hold My Hand I’m Dying’ in 1967, during the bloody transformation of Rhodesia into Zimbabwe.

A lover of wildlife, animal welfare, and politics,  Gordon’s last book, ‘Unofficial and Deniable’ published in 2000 is about the New South Africa. 

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What inspired you to write your first book?

The Rhodesian political crisis plus my stormy love-life prompted me to begin writing my first book when I was 27; it was published three years later.

Writing style?


Realism: real action and real dialogue, often against a real political background; telling it how life really is … letting it all hang out, but always with a fictitious love story interwoven. I am an early bird so tend to write between 5am and 2pm and then again between 6pm and 8pm.

Always in fridge: Booze … and something very easy to eat.

Worst thing about life in Spain: Bureaucracy, The Code Napoleon.


What do you like to do when you’re not writing?

Travelling, sailing my yacht, goofing off drinking, dining out with my wife and good friends.

My wife and I have sailed our boat from Hong Kong to Spain, thence to South America, Caribbean and have sailed across the Atlantic three times.

Interesting jobs you had?

As a student I joined Seaman’s Union and sailed as a deckhand for two years on merchant ships around much of the world and to the Antartic on whalers (when whaling was still respectable). I have also worked as a miner in Canada.

Future plans?

A tourist agency suggested that I teach a fiction writing course at my finca. The first six-day residential course was in October and the next is set for March. We cover areas including plot building, theme, the 12 step ‘clock’, the so-called three acts, subplots, love, mood and pacing.

The concluding seminar will be given by Dutchman Frank Fehmers, a book publisher for 40 years, who will explain the ins and outs of getting published.

By Nicole Hallett

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