A RETIRED Newton Abbot resident has had his first novel published.

Titled ‘The Curious Tale of a French Salesman’, it is a romantic story set in France in the twentieth century.

The author, Dennis Humphreys of Forde Park, had not planned to start a new venture as a writer.

Since retirement, he had attended French classes at Kingskerswell and found that he enjoyed writing short stories in French. He entered a short story in the annual writing competition in the French magazine used in the classes, and it won.

He then wrote the back stories of the characters in his winning entry and came to realise that he had the basis of a novel.

And so he proceeded to write the novel (in English). He found that once the characters had been formed, the novel virtually wrote itself.

As well as telling a romantic story, the novel refers to important events in the last century, including the World Wars and their effects on individual people in the story.

Then during lockdown and in the months which followed, he has completed three more novels,

His first novel, published by Austin Macauley Publishers of London, was released on 15th September.