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Book a tick on Kamo man's bucket list

DENISE PIPER
Last updated 05:00 18/12/2012
Ian Reid
DENISE PIPER
REFLECTION TIME: Ian Reid, 81, is relieved to have finished his first book, The Life and Times of Ian Walter Reid.

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Whangarei Leader

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Ian Reid lives the life he wants.

At the age of 81, the Kamo man has written his first book The Life and Times of Ian Walter Reid.

The book features 110 short stories and poems on everything from the imaginary life of animals to real adventures on the water with his late second wife Joyce.

"Most of the stories are about the sea, bush animals and happy little situations that happened to Joyce and give people a little laugh or grin."

He admits the book has evolved rather slowly over the last 22 years.

More used to using his hands than writing, Ian has worked as an air force barrel maker, a cabinet maker and furniture finisher.

But he has always been creative and has been making wooden sculptures for about 45 years, first in his spare time then more regularly.

It was sanding a sculpture for eight hours a day that turned him on to writing but by his own admission his first story was "dreadful".

Thankfully his writing has improved with perseverance. He says joining the Whangarei Writers Workshop has helped a lot. In 2010 Ian entered a British poetry competition and had a poem published in the compilation book Poetry Rival 2010.

But publishing his own book has been on Ian's bucket list for a while.

"I turned 80 last April and for three years I've been fretting that I would die before I get it done," he says.

Ian has survived five heart by-passes and had to be brought back to life eight times during his life, so he says he felt relieved to finish the book.

It was done with the help of local company Design 2 Print and printed by Apricot Books.

The limited print run of 50 books cost $50 each but Ian is selling them for $30.

"I'm prepared to lose money to get them out in circulation and also I want to know what people think about my book - if they like it I can get cracking on doing another one."

Ian has dedicated the book to Joyce, who he says was always his inspiration.

"She encouraged me in every way she could."

To buy a book call Ian on 435 4652 or email ianwreid@xtra.co.nz.

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- Whangarei Leader

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