Peter has long held a fascination for the past, with an abiding passion for the peoples and places of the Dark Ages. He studied prehistory and geography at the Australian National University in Canberra, during which time he experienced his first real taste of archaeology: fighting his way through the steamy tropical jungles of Papua New Guinea searching for evidence of its early inhabitants. Dining on spiders was a memorable highlight of those expeditions.
Following the completion of his degree, he took up a post as Curatorial Assistant at the fledgling National Museum of Australia. It was during this time, on one hot summer’s afternoon whilst reading the Anglo Saxon Chronicle, that he stumbled upon a passage referring to the fall of the once powerful British kingdom of Dumnonia (present-day Cornwall and Devon). The concise, blandly worded entry was to eventually spark the creation of the Wolves of Dumnonia saga, of which The Shadow of Fenrir is the first volume.
But putting that story to paper was to come much later. In the meantime, Peter went on to complete post-graduate heritage management and interpretation studies at the University of Canberra. His thesis explored the effectiveness of living history as an interpretive medium, with a focus on the presentation of Viking culture across Europe. This involved a 6-month field trip to all the key Viking sites across UK, Ireland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Germany; an absolute highlight in Peter's career.
It was during a particularly rainy week on the Outer Hebrides in Scotland on that same field trip that Peter and his travelling companion Shawn came up with the idea of setting up a new publishing company back in Australia that would focus upon publishing books about Australia's national parks and cultural heritage. They called it Beaten Track Press, and for over a decade Peter wrote and produced a range of travel guide books and related products for national parks and wider tourist regions in eastern Australia (e.g. Mungo NP, Mt Kaputar NP, Warrumbungle NP, South East Forests National Parks, Touring Guide to the Australian Alps National Parks (with New Holland Publishers), Touring Guide to Southeast Queensland (with Steve Parish Publishing)).
Peter's involvement in Beaten Track Press ended in 2003 when Peter and his wife Jo decided to move to the UK and settle in the Lake District. One of Peter's early roles in the UK was as interim Curator of Keswick Museum and Art Gallery, where he worked with a dedicated team of fantastic local people to develop a plan for the rejuvenation of this Victorian Cabinet of Curiosities.
In 2015, Peter decided it was high time to lay down the story he had first conceived all those years ago, and so he set about penning the first book in the Wolves of Dumnonia saga: The Shadow of Fenrir. It was quite a challenge to fit his writing around the numerous demands on his time, particularly being Co-Director of the family business and trying his best to be a good dad. Following Fenrir's completion in 2018, he immediately turned his attention to finalising the second volume (A Thrall's Crown), due for publication in summer 2019. In addition to the Wolves of Dumnonia series, Peter is also working on a contemporary tale set in the English Lakes, plus a science fiction story also set on present-day Earth.
2019 looks to be a very busy year!