Black History Month getting together with Author Raymond A Francis to discuss his book and what inspired him to write it
BHM: It is a very interesting, honest and frank autobiography . What inspired you to write it?
RAY: My inspiration came when I was a member of a gym in Deptford although it was not my local I used to travel from Sydenham just to soak up the atmosphere. I was known as the blabber mouth, other members used to say you are always yapping why don’t you just write a book and get it over with! I thought of it but I never did anything until I was put in a place to rest but not in peace, the thought of writing a book was haunting me more and more each day sometimes during the night I would see my book out there doing very well but that was just a dream, with time on my hands I decided to turn my dream into reality. I started to write as I reside in ‘HMS Belmarsh’ through no fault of my own I may add. But I dare say thanks to Carol the ex-wife I started writing in 2002.
BHM: As in most families, there seemed to be lots of dynamics going on, how did you remain so forgiving and generous to your father in particular ?
Ray: Indeed, as they say keep your friends close and your enemies closer. Have I forgiven him? No, it is impossible for me to forgive due to the fact that father dear has left me not knowing who I am or where I came from. On the day when Jesus was calling mother dear she had asked for all her children to be around her as she passes from one dimension to the next. She asked for me personally father dear, asked who are you asking for? I do not have a son by that name mother wept as she hungers for my presence at her bedside. She could see father as he always was filled with hatred for me. The question is why I asked? Sometimes I wonder if he is my biological father.
BHM: You showed the same loyalty and generosity to your ex-wife who nearly destroyed you.as a result of your experiences what advice could you offer others in a similar position?
Ray: My marriage to Carol was somewhat turbulent. The divorce was extremely messy, the aftermath was even messier. I totally cut her off for 14 years, she claimed it was 12.5 I managed to get her out of my system unfortunately, that was very regrettable she had spread it to everyone that knew us that we are best friends. I simply spoke to her because of my daughter. What I would say to others in the same position is to care for your children if there is any, don’t show the hatred you are carrying, make her think all is forgotten, but always keep your eyes open.
BHM: You highlighted in your book how easy it is for foreigners to dupe the UK system to obtain benefits and I admire your honesty in doing this. What advice ( even if they would listen ) would you offer to our government?
Ray: I would simply advise the Government to stop giving the impression to all foreigners that this country is a safe haven for them. Because the NHS is bursting at the seams to help people who are non-residents of the UK and have never made any contributions to the system. The Government should only take people who can benefit the country and also people of wealth otherwise this places a huge impact on housing, employment and the welfare state.
BHM: You have been very honest and frank about your sex life…..what advice ( if any ) will you give your daughter on the subject?
Ray: I would tell her to stay away from men such as myself!! Also to put her education first and if she have to do the sex thing to do it safely.
BHM: From your experiences with the British legal system ……you must feel very bitter…..did writing the book exposing them help to relieve your resentment of them?
Ray: No there is no change to my feelings of the British legal system I will always resent them because of what they stand for . . . .injustice!
BHM: From your experiences are you able to ensure that your daughter has a more ” stable life “?
Ray: Yes, I have always stayed by her side guiding her through in my opinion, the best way possible
BHM: Where is your present life up to now…We hope that you are happy…
Ray: My present life up to now I dare say a wife and 3 year old to keep me busy. Yes, I must say I am extremely happy but as a man when a ‘cutie’ passes by I always have to look but in today’s society ‘a cutie’ could also be a man disguise as a woman quite disturbing I may add!
BHM: Did you find writing the book therapeutic?
Ray: Yes indeed, the therapy of writing is a 100% better than a doctor’s prescription, you feel the weight disappear from your shoulders then you can actually see a ray of light shining through that lifts your soul.
BHM: Lastly, do you intend to grow old gracefully Or another book?
RAY: Yes, another book is on the way part 2 is coming to get you more intense, more gripping. Growing old gracefully that’s the question!!
True Experiences: The Sins That Brought Me to My Knees
Raymond A. Francis (Author)
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