Tag Archives: myopia

Tagged on a Blog Hop

Thanks to fellow Crooked Cat writer, Carol Hedges, author of Victorian crime novel, ‘Diamonds and Dust’, for tagging me on this Blog Hop. At the end of this interview I will be tagging another brilliant author, Catriona King, whose DCI Craig detective thrillers are a must-read.

What am I working on?

Following on from ‘Myopia’, I am currently working on two more YA novels. One contains fantasy elements, although it’s set in the real world; slipstream fiction is the best description. This novel explores universal issues and themes. The other novel that I’ve finished uses football as a subject to examine themes such as bullying and family. It has a grandfather/grandson relationship, and involves some pathos but is ultimately uplifting. The message is something along the lines of: ‘Never give up. Stay focussed and determined if you hope to realise your potential’.

myopia cover 1

How does my work differ from others of its genre?

My YA novels involve a good deal of realism. As a teacher for over twenty years, I feel I can write about school and teenagers with a great deal of realism. My other novels are more adult-orientated. ‘Treading On Dreams’ is a coming of age tale about obsession and unrequited love; ‘Igboland’ is the story of Lydia, an English woman living in West Africa during the Biafran War. Her own marriage and faith are beginning to crumble when she meets Igbo doctor, Kwemto, and learns a great deal about herself.

My fiction stretches across genre boundaries, breaks a few rules and expectations. I tend to believe in good writing whatever the genre, rather than sticking to one type of narrative or setting. My short story collection, ‘A Glimpse of the Numinous’, is a booksellers’ nightmare as it contains horror, humour and romance.

Glimpse of the Numinous Prototype

Why do I write what I do?

I write because my head is full of stories and images that need an outlet, other than through me losing my marbles. Sometimes writing is a cathartic experience. ‘Igboland’ came out of my sentimental attachment to the country of my birth: Nigeria. ‘Myopia’ was a response to seeing the effects of bullying on sensitive students. ‘Treading On Dreams’ began as a narrative about a man who is overly sensitive and naive: traits not usually associated with being masculine. I write horror, humour and romance because people are not just one thing, but are complex beings full of hope, anger, light and shade.

Treading on Dreams by Jeff Gardiner - 1800-300dpi

How does your writing process work?

In practical terms I write two days a week, around my part-time job, and when I can find time. I also have kids, so it’s hard balancing all three aspects of my life.

Once I have a project on the go I am very focussed, and on a good day with few distractions, I can write 2000 words. Being a writer does not just involve writing, though. Marketing and publicity is an important aspect that takes up a huge amount of time – something non-writers might not fully appreciate.

I love the creativity of writing, but I also enjoy the discipline of editing and improving my work. That’s a skill which goes hand-in-hand with the creative process.

Igboland cover5

Now I’d like to tag Catriona King. The 6th book in her DCI Craig series, ‘The Slowest Cut’ is just out.

MYOPIA into the People’s Book Prize Final!

My novel MYOPIA has made it to the final of The People’s Book Prize.

Thanks to everyone who has voted, read it and supported me, so far.


Here is the link to show the finalists for 2013/14:  http://www.peoplesbookprize.com/finalists_2013.htm

pbpMYOPIA is a gritty YA/Adult crossover novel exploring the effects of bullying and prejudice.

A selction of comments from voters:

“Thoughtful, intelligent and imaginative”

“the story is dynamic”

“involving and deeply satisfying”

“full of insight and humour”

“poignant, beautiful and heart-wrenching”

“a fantastic read for all ages”

“the bullying theme was so sensitively handled”


For more details visit my website: http://jeffgardiner.com/

To puchase a copy (paperback or ebook) please click on the cover below.


Review Comments for MYOPIA

Here is a new selection of recent comments reviewers have made about MYOPIA.

  • “one of the best books I have ever read … touching, amusing and poignant”.
  • “I recommend this book to anyone affected by bullying … or anyone who enjoys a can’t-put-it-down YA novel”.
  • “engaging and compelling”.
  • “a great book with a strong message”.
  • “I’d recommend this book to teachers and grown-ups who have to deal with the issue of bullying”.


Click here to buy MYOPIA on Amazon.

Character Interview: Jerry from MYOPIA

Here’s an interview with the character Jerry Hough from ‘MYOPIA’: a contemporary novel which explores responses towards bullying and prejudice. This interview was first published on Nancy Jardine’s Blogspot.




Where do you live?

Crawley, West Sussex – born and bred. Some people dismiss it as just a New Town near Gatwick Airport, but we did this project at school which shows there’s lots of history from Victorian and even Medieval times. Crawley is a major town with lots of history. My dad keeps reminding me that the band The Cure come from here too.It’s a great place to live. It gets criticised and it can be noisy on a Saturday night, but it has great parks, an amazing cinema and state of the art sports centre. Plus Crawley Town F.C. are now in the Premiership and are going to win the Champions League this year.

What would be your ideal place to stay for a month?

India. First because it’s exotic and hot. Secondly, I could go with Mindy and visit her family. Her dad, who’s a really cool guy, was born in Bengal which sounds beautiful. Then he moved to Hyderabad where the family now live.

What would you do there that would be different from what you normally do in a day?

Not go to school! Spend some quality time with Mindy and have a break from lessons and being bullied by those gits Wayno and Rhino.

Tell me 6 things about yourself.

That’s a bit personal isn’t it? Oh, okay … I’m short-sighted; my best friend is Silu; you may have worked out by now that I fancy a girl called Mindy (full name Parminder Sidhu); I hate Wayno more than anyone else in the world; wearing glasses is truly bad for my street-cred; and, finally, keep this to yourself, but I think I might be developing these special powers – but that’s top secret and if you tell anyone then I’ll probably have to kill you!

How would your girlfriend describe you?

Mindy seems to think I look cool in my specs (she’s the only one). She is a bit concerned about my behaviour at times – but I can’t tell her about Myopia … not yet.myopia b&w

Sounds like you want to change your lifestyle. What would you change first?

I want to be stronger, taller, handsome and generally more heroic. I need to learn how to stand up to Wayno and Rhino. My dad says I have to be more assertive, which is different to aggressive; and I’ve been reading about how to be assertive without being arrogant or cocky. I don’t want to end up like those two chavs.

That seems like a good plan. So, ignoring them – what’s your main form of relaxation?

Football. I play when I can and I support Crawley Town, who ARE going to win the Champion’s League this year! I hate shopping (except if I’m with Mindy, of course).

What do you see yourself doing a year from now?

I have a plan formulating in my mind which is going to stop the bullying once and for all. There’s lots to think about and plan if I’m going to get it right. So in a year’s time I can throw away the ‘victim’ sign on my back and be in control of my own destiny. Wish me luck.

Imagine you’ve been given a ticket for unlimited travel. Where would you go, and why go there?

I’ll follow Mindy to the ends of the earth! I want to be with her on a secluded beach in the sun, rubbing sun-tan lotion all over her beautiful … uh? Oh, sorry I’ve got to go – I’m late for my dinner and my dad’ll ground me for a century. Cheers and don’t forget to text me … ML Jeff3

MYOPIA by Jeff Gardiner

myopia3“Oi! You four-eyed freak!”

Jerry is bullied for wearing glasses. When he realises his short-sightedness is not a disability, but a different way of perceiving and understanding the world around him, he begins to see things from a new, unique perspective.

He even starts to believe he might have super-powers, but soon learns a great deal about himself and about the boy who is making his life such a misery.

As he becomes alienated from his girlfriend and best mate, both victims of racism, Jerry realises he needs to think hard and put his plan into action.

Has Jerry discovered a new way of dealing with prejudice?

Myopia is a novel about bullying, friendship and learning the hard way.


“An intelligent, skillful and well-written treatment of a serious subject”

(L.H. Healy of The Little Reader Libarary – Amazon top 500 reviewer and Vine Voice.)


Myopia is a poignant, beautiful and heart-wrenching story that resonates with truth, hope and above all, the immeasurable power of human compassion. Thoroughly recommended.”                                                      (T. J. Reids)



MYOPIA by Jeff Gardiner is available from


Or http://www.smashwords.com as a paperback and e-book

               ISBN – 978-1-908910-53-0


  Crooked Cat Books

Jeff Gardiner’s Blog:  https://jeffgardiner.wordpress.com/