Please buy my book (autobiography disguised as fiction) and help me and my newborn son out of the Jungle!

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Well I hope you like reading...

They say, it's all about the first line. Hey there, my name is Nathan. Originally from the UK, but now, (and I've always said this as a bit of a joke, but these days it has new meaning), happily trapped in south east Asia. My 8 and a half month old Son is doing just great. His family are somewhat crazy, which wasn't a problem till we started living with them. Unfortunately, it's rubbing off on me. I'm stuck here between a rock, and a bit of a pickle. Not the place I intended to be, whilst raising my first and probably only child.

Thanks to the madness currently possessing the world, my options, just like most people's stuck on this rock, are thin on the ground. But as a foreigner in this country, with no government bail out like I'd be getting back home if in the same situation, I expect I'm currently somewhere towards the top end of the world's poverty chart... I've chosen not to openly disclose where I am exactly, as publishers in this country need to exercise a very careful caution, and the laws here regarding slander and defamation of character, mixed up with my legal status, could end up making my situation much worse. I'm not trying to cast a negative light on this place, but it might seem that way, with the way I write about it. I love this place, I just hate this situation, and feel so helpless.

I realise I may also at times sound very unappreciative. That's because I am... my body doesn't appreciate white rice every meal of every day. And though I'm used to picking things out of my food, when bugs are a part of the recipe, it feels a bit rude. My lungs don't appreciate the smell of burning bottles every night, and I'm sick of moving the big piles of plastic that mount up outside the room where my son sleeps. I'm also not too keen on the kitchen knife under his pillow, this turned up there, not because of my wife's heavy hands waking him up in tears, but the bad dreams caused by the ghosts. And even though we all know the only way to scare a ghost away is with cutlery, I think I'd prefer a bad dream every once in a while, than one time having a kitchen knife lodged in my neck.

All this being said, I have chosen, for many reasons (and very few alternatives), to ride this out as long as possible for the sake of my Son. The book I am writing explains my situation, and by reading it you should be able to fill in the very odd, small gap. If not, fire me a message, and we'll have a chin-wag.

In a nutshell, I was robbed of the money for my renewal of a very important document by a tour operator. Due to my own naivety, and being busy working in a different city, it was almost 3 months before I realised there was a problem. At the time, my wife was pregnant, and the little money i had was to take care of the hospital bill. After taking some bad advice, I scraped together $500 and paid someone who's family are high up in government and the police, to sort my problem out. Now, I'm down an extra $500, and the document I need to pass through ports is nowhere to be seen. Which is a bit of a worry. I've been here long enough, seen it all before, and by now have learnt that there's nothing much I can do to sort this, without having the cash to pay the overstay. And going to the embassy wouldn't do me any good either, they can't help me out of this, not if I don't have the funds.

The area we live in is very rural, nothing but farmland for miles around. My skill set back home is absolutely useless out here now. I've spent most of my time in this country working in tourism, mainly managing guesthouses, a skill I'm very thankful for being able to pick up. At the time the world began to fall apart, I was project managing the build of an eco-resort. I wasn't making much, but the potential was there. My manager made the right decision at the time, and cut his losses.

Now, the only real option I have is farm work on the family plot. I did this last time we were here when our son was born, usually earning somewhere between $3.75 & 7.50 every 2 days. This time of year, the farm is out of season. Once this years crop is ready, the total worth of the farm's produce will be around $5.00 every 2 days as the 1st month creeps by. This time around, as it looks like I'll be staying for the foreseeable future, I've got to come up with a real plan. I used to be vegetarian, now i eat fish heads.. the cheeks, the brains, their faces. I give the eyes to my wife's brothers...i had to draw the line somewhere.

My only real viable option of making a decent wage out here, is to work online. Ideally I'd like to teach English. But most of the day, we're in a black hole for data connection, and with the lack of a certain document, signing up isn't possible anyway.

So what's the plan? Well, carry on clutching at straws i guess, keep writing the book, prepare the land for this years harvest and raise the kid. Plenty to keep me busy, but I'm so frustrated.

I always thought I'd be in my late 50s/early 60s, when I finally thought about publishing my first book. When I had something to write about, and my fingers couldn't handle playing music any longer. As it turns out, I have plenty to write about, it's spilling out with ease. I've always written, but a novel seemed a little too daunting to even think about. I wouldn't like to guess just how many songs I've written since my first, 25 years ago (which was terrible, I don't know why I still remember it). But the 2 albums trapped in my head are pretty good, at least I recon so. Hopefully they will see the light of day, at some point in the future.

I started the novel on the night of the 20th December 2020, and as of today (23rd Dec), I'm over 4,000 words into it. I've edited most of where I am up to, though I've been advised to try and avoid editing as I go. I'm hoping to entice some of you in, with the first few chapters. If it's something you're into, super duper. A little can go a long way out here, and anything would be much appreciated as I'm raising my little champ.

Anyone who is kind enough to help us out, will be sent an email with all the writing I have completed at that point, and then probably weekly updates from there onwards. Either that, or login details to a site to read/download from. On its completion and the final edit, they'll receive an e-book copy, and if I'm lucky enough to have it published in printed form, each of them will get a mention on a dedication page as a huge thank you. I'd like to offer everyone the chance to leave an inspirational message/joke/clues to where buried treasure's hidden, or just absolute nonsense, for the outside world to read alongside their dedication. Heck, use it to promote your auntie's dog wash service, see if I care. Could be quite interesting. In fact, I'm going to do that in the e-book too, screw it, sounds like fun.

Anyway, I'm averaging around 1,500 words a day, and expect to be in the final editing stage by mid February.

The novel is written as a fiction, but at the same time, is almost completely auto-biographical. Names and places have been changed to help protect my Son's and my own safety here, but the story, and its characters are real. I can promise that, I'm living it.

OH!.. and just before i get back to work, I must say... I know my use of punctuation, Capitals, and commas, may be a little unorthodox,,, but just so you know, I know (most of) what I'm doing wrong, I did fairly well in school, didn't do so bad... but, I knew better... and still think that I might. But if not, I've got some good friends back home with published work, who are going to help with the final cut... I've not pestered them too much as of yet, and what's down currently, is me with very little filter, and with a little coaxing, in the end, I brush up alright.

And no matter how important the first line of a story must be, I just couldn't help myself... I'm sorry, you'll get over it.

Thank you for reading, you're welcome to carry on, and I hope you do.

Nathan Fryer-Woods

[The light that shines from within me, bows to the light that shines within you]


I know for any publisher, having a plot outline is very important and essential for most first time authors. Although I am a true 'pantser' in life in general, I do have my main outline. The middle marathon being based on one or more of the many fears i have for the future, and twists in the plot coming from actual events which have happened to me whilst being here. This is all providing nothing major happens as I'm writing in the moment, and with all that's happened already, would be an unexpected, and highly unlikely surprise. Currently, I'm drawing from the days events, while drifting back to the past to provide background. I've been writing daily outlines, more detailed and over a smaller time frame, for the following days work. But I will happily provide the main plot outline, and an up to date manuscript upon request. Nice one.


Bit long winded, I know, I'm sorry... but if you're still with us, here's the first 2 chapters. Don't worry, they're fairly short.

For chapters 1 - 15, please visit




It It was a dark, cold night. Which was kind of fitting for the beginning of any story. But in south east Asia, when you start feeling the cold, you know you've been there too long. And as a ginger kid from the north of England, he should have been in his element.

He was so far from the place he had once called home. And it had been years since he'd felt the long, scalding hug of the hallway radiator, on his return home from whatever trouble he'd been causing, beyond the icy front door.

He had never really, truly missed home, that was until now. He longed for that familiar smell of the old underlay carpet in the council flat he once had. The flat he received after he was crippled by a speeding police car, whilst trying to cross the road years before. There was no compensation. But, as a result, he became the king of his own castle. A place for him to lick his wounds. It was dark and dingy, and located in the back of beyond where the undesirables of town were kept, but he didn't care. He was happy, and it was his. The only place he's ever really been able to call his own. But now, those days, seemed like a lifetime away.

Today, he's found himself trapped in a different kind of paradise, one he thought he'd never want to leave. He had always believed humans to be of a semi-nomadic nature, but he had found happiness here, and at one time, for the first time since childhood, he had felt settled.

That was until, that 'thing' happened. He didn't like talking about it, and when he did, would get so frustrated. No one understood it like he did, not many people at least.

It had been 3 months since he last saw another foreigner, 3 months since he had seen anything of the world outside of their village. And he was an explorer at heart. Though he never strayed too far off the beaten track, and he'd never discovered anything new, he was always looking, it was just a matter of time... it was in his blood. His itch for exploration, grew stronger by the day.

His wife was the only one in their village who could speak any English, (although he sometimes felt he got a better conversation from their eight and a half month old son), she was the only one who had even half a chance of vaguely understanding him at a deeper level. They had met 3 years previous in the capital city. A place with a pace he was used to, and found comfort in. But now, thanks to certain 'things', and the changing world around them, he found himself in the place his wife found the most comforting, her parents cashew nut farm. Up a hill, in the middle of nowhere. He felt like an elephant, with sore thumbs, in a pond, full of fish. Sticking out... misunderstood.


It was the 21st of December, not only the day of the winter solstice, but in the year of the 'Great Conjunction', between Saturn and Jupiter. Tonight the world would see these astral giants, seemingly merge into one, forming what is known as the 'Christmas Star'. It had been 397 years since this alignment last took place, just 13 years before Galileo built his first telescope to marvel at the heavens above.

This event had to signify something, he knew it would, but he was far too apprehensive to look so deeply into it. He convinced himself it was a positive, auspicious event, but at the same time made a mental note to his brain's list of 'things to do', to see what the ancients made of it. After all, when the God of Thunder and his mighty Son do a high-five in the night sky, one should be prepared, or so he believed. But, that list in his head seemed to never end, it would only ever get longer. He knew, and readily admitted to himself, he would probably never get round to it. And in time, as soon as it was far too late, that entry like many before it would drop off the list, as just another faded memory.

The day before, he had tried to explain to his wife, the solstice, the tilt of the Earth, and the reason for it being so cold this time of year. But soon realising that the battle for her attention against her best friend - the phone, was a battle he always lost, he promptly gave up.

The previous week, her two youngest siblings (the brothers, aged 11 and 14), had asked him if they had shooting stars back in England. After 7 years of practice, his level of the local language was good enough to articulate most of the things he wanted to say (although this particular part of the country was the last of the true tribal areas, with 13 different clans each with their own dialect, making understanding them more of a challenge). He explained to the brothers, in as simple of terms as possible, the physics of the phenomenon. How more often than not, a shooting star was nothing more than a small pebble from outer space, travelling at unimaginable speed towards the Earth. And how it's magnificent trail was made as it burnt up in the atmosphere before it was able to reach us.

Seeing the mystery and magic in their faces fade before his very eyes, he quickly moved on to let them know how it was customary back home, after seeing a shooting star, to make a little wish to yourself. And that this, was not to be wasted. He imagined, how even the most hardened criminals themselves probably couldn't resist this, and even they would make one. Maybe it's quite likely that wish would be for guns, drugs or money. But you never know, the inner child in all of us, where that belief is instilled, only wants one of two things; love and happiness. And with that, comes security. The magic we're raised with as children, if at all, dies hard. And even with years of learning from science, logic and reason, some magic we just can't let go of. No matter how many times it's failed us.

After seeing at least some of the mystery return to their faces, he moved back - with faith, to cold, hard, facts. He explained how if these space pebbles were any bigger, and hadn't completely burnt up on their descent to Earth, even a rock the size of a toy car (available to hand at the time), could devastate the planet. At the very least, make a real mess around the site of impact. He used the 3000 year old crater lake, situated down the road as an example. This, would be the last thing he'd say on the matter. The brothers went on to let him know, how their hole in the Earth was different. Through the unique use of their local, hillbilly twang, they managed to get the point across that in fact, their crater was made by a great, angry, pig-like God from the skies... obviously, and he should have seen it coming.

The shattered pain that was once on the boy's faces, had transferred onto his own. He retreated back into his own mind, to his own thoughts. A place he understood, and needed no explanations. With no brick walls that he could waste his time with, by banging his head against.


Chapters 1 - 13 can be found on my blog

To receive a full copy upon completion (estimated mid-feb), please donate either here, or through

AND DON'T FORGET! To please email your best contact method to arrange download/delivery/notification of release. Thank you

[email protected]

Much love to all,



  • Nathan FryerWoods
  • Campaign Owner



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