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Eli Paperback – November 25, 2009
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About the Author
More About the Author
Born in London in 1970, he grew up as a teenager in the West coast of Africa, Cameroon. He returned to England in October of 1989 and graduated with a BEng(Hons.) in Electrical and Electronic Engineering from Manchester Metropolitan University in 1992.
When asked: how did UNIVERSITY life treat you? His immediate response has always been: my advice to all children is "LISTEN to your parents, some of the things they say might just come in handy in making critical decisions"!
After holding down many part time jobs, some of them including the responsibility of managing the fries section in Mcdonalds, he landed his first real engineering role in 1993 with WS Atkins Consultants. By 1995 he was amongst the first consultants to lead a consortium of high ranking officials through the Channel tunnel that links main land Europe - France and England. This experience prompted him to change companies with a desire to manage projects and stern the ship of a rapidly developing telecommunications market. By 1997 he was bid manager, placing proposals for advanced Transport Telematics Schemes before the European Commission in a bid to raise funds for a consortium of companies from five European countries that included England, France, Netherlands, Belgium and Italy. Company relocation and reorganization saw Leslie decide it was time to rethink his career.
In 1998 he began to feel the qualms of an engineer with a desire to complement his engineering background with that of sales.
When asked: why would an engineer wish to learn about sales? His response is: Sales and marketing is not just restricted to titles of departments in a company. We are all selling something to one another everyday of our lives. If we want to let others know what we do, it would be in our interest to learn a thing or two about sales.
When asked: How about travel: why is this so important to you? Seeking my next job was not only determined by my responsibilities within that organization it was determined by the opportunity to travel.
Leslie's next roles in the telecommunications industry saw him work in Sweden, Spain, France, Holland, Italy and Germany. With a solid foundation in the telecoms industry head hunters were soon knocking at his door. Before long he was sitting in front of three job proposals that would stem his career to new heights. He chose Cisco Systems in Dallas in 2000 which set him in good stead to fulfill his ever longing desire to become a writer.
When asked how is this possible? If you were prospering in your career then why change, why fix something that isn't broken? His response is: Perhaps it is not about fixing what isn't broken but making it better to do more than it already does.
In a years time he was made redundant and giving a considerable package that enabled him move from the telecoms market and write his first novel, Divinity Dawns. This was released in September of 2004 after which Leslie began to feel the constraints and pressures that all writers face today.
'You are only published if you are well known.' 'You are only published if someone well known will endorse you.'
Like any new career it brought its ups and downs and book sales where not enough for him to sustain a living. He returned to the telecoms market in 2005 and joined Huawei as a product manager. Within two weeks he was in China attending conferences and pushing for sales of products for this ever expanding company.
When asked: then everything was okay, you had your book and now you had a good job why leave what appears to be a successful career? His response: A dream doesn't abandon us we abandon our dreams. Writing was what I was meant to do. I have always done this in one form or another since I was a child. Nothing can take this away from me.
By 2006 Leslie had begun his new novel ELI which was the second in the sequel of the Divinity Dawns trilogy. He took a job in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia as the Head of Optics for Thrupoint/Cisco Systems Partnership and used this as a springboard of inspiration to complete ELI. With the termination of his contract in late 2007 as the project drew to a close, he decided to cast aside a successful engineering career and focus on his dream of becoming a writer. Even with the odds against him and the prospect of no book sales and a weathering bank account Leslie completed and self published his new book Eli in November 2009.
When asked: So what happens next? Are you going to let your dream bring you to ruin, you've practically lost everything? His response is: Yes I have almost lost everything but not everything. I still have my faith and this is enough to fulfill my dream. The other things I would get back. Time would tell whether I made the wrong decision to quit telecoms.