East 17's Tony Mortimer Is Writing His Own Novel To Tackle Shortage Of Books For Young Boys
Tony Mortimer said he had been inspired by the "mental benefits" of reading during lockdown
The pop star is planning to publish a young adult fiction novel after hearing about a lack of books aimed at young boys.
Mortimer, who read his first novel during lockdown, said he had been inspired to write the book after experiencing the "mental benefits" of reading during the pandemic.
Writing for The House magazine, the award winning songwriter revealed he had avoided "boring" fiction books until he forced himself to finish one last year, saying he had now "fallen in love" with reading.
And the 50-year-old pop sensation said his new "obsession" had seen him put pen to paper after hearing about the shortage of fiction stories aimed at boys.
"This was inspired both by my grandchildren and an article I read which told how many boys are seen in book shops, but sadly a large number leave empty handed," he wrote.
"It seems they cannot find something that suits. Perhaps there is a shortage of books for young male readers?"
He added: "I hope to write one they can enjoy. Something exciting, adventurous.
"Something that may take them away from their world, if only for a short time."
Mortimer, who has previously spoken out about the peer pressure on young boys to avoid reading, said he hoped his debut adventure tale would provide kids with the same "escapism" which helped him through lockdown.
The former boy band member also revealed he had devoured novels by JK Rowling, Agatha Christie and Oscar Wilde while stuck at home, adding: "If life is chaotic or stressful you could do a lot worse than immersing yourself in a far-off distant sci fi galaxy or cosy country village mystery.
"There really is something for everyone; I only wish I discovered it long before I did."