My latest novel, “Better Late Than Ever,” is a fictional depiction of Phil Greenfield, a 60-year-old, recently retired bachelor, and the dangerously misdirected focus on youth Phil discovers behind the private stone walls of a modern retirement community. The residents of this community go to extremes, and pay the price, for attempting to make the final trimester of their lives better, or at least as good, as their preceding years.
I don’t know about you, but there are many experiences from my earlier years that I’d just as soon not re-live. . . zits, being picked last in dodge ball, having a rusted out P.O.S. car in high school, 2 a.m. feedings, fighting my way halfway up the corporate ladder. . . just to name a few. And now that I’ve hit 60 (very recently), I can say there are many aspects of my life that truly make it enjoyable. My kids are grown and doing well, professionally and personally. I’ve retired from a 30-year career that has afforded me options on how I spend my time. My wife and I are healthy, and we enjoy each other’s company. And I began writing three years ago, a pursuit I’ve found exciting and rewarding. All in all, it’s a good gig.
My novel is not a peek at my retirement future, as some have assumed. Rather, it depicts the extreme of what I’d fear finding in retirement. I won’t say how it ends for Phil Greenfield, but for me, it IS better late than ever.