The journey of William Fitzgerald, an alcoholic whose condition has robbed him of not only his dignity, but any semblance of what it is to be considered a ‘normal’ member of society. He wants to find a way back – a way out from his mere existence – he wants a release from the pain that exists in his head. He’s offered help but is help enough when pitted against the demons from within and the underhandedness of somebody he’s come to consider a friend.
What inspired you to write this book?
Whilst out running along the bank of the River Thames I often passed an old vagabond who slept under an old tarpauline. He’d be there for a few days and then diappear only to return a week, or so, later. I often wondered where he’d gone and how he survived. I saw him one day drunkenly serenading passersby outside the postoffice looking for donations, or alms you might say. I watched as an elderly lady approached who seemed to really take pity on him; maybe she knew him I have no idea. Anyway, that brief moment inspired me to write the book.
Who are the primary readers of this book?
All those who have ever suffered some sort of dependency and anybody who enjoys a good story that asks questions and leaves the unfolding of its conclusion right till the very end.
How long did it take you to write?
1 year to write
How did you come up with the title?
I thought it seemed quite appropriate given that a hell of a lot of people today seem to think the answer to their problems lie in taking a drink.
Why did you choose this cover?
Is a depiction of how I remember seeing the vagabond on a day when he looked particularly desolate and all he had was a can to embrace in his trembling hand.
Did you do any research for your book?
Found out how the format works at AA meetings, etc.
Did you learn anything about writing this book, and if so what?
I learnt that we’re all at the mercy of our unconscious thinking.
What do you want to say to your readers?
It’s very easy to scoff at those less fortunate because we all, in the main, think it’s a simple case of a lack of self-control. The reality, I have found, is that the enemy lies deep within our pysches and it’s often incredibly difficult, even for the best of us, to distinguish between reality and fiction. To be riddled with fear, self-loathing and a good degree of low self-esteem, to name but a few, is a battle, unfortunately, that few really ever overcome sufficently enough to overide the compulsion to escape.