Mark Roper was born in South Africa. He lived in Swaziland in the 1960's and returned there in the 70's. His unconventional life has led him to many parts of the world. He backpacked through Eastern Africa, the Middle East, Europe and Scandinavia (a period that was the basis of his first screenplay and directorial début) finally ending up in Washington D.C. working in the Australian Embassy. There he was smitten by the film bug and returned to South Africa where television production was in its heyday. Mark is now a recognised film director and lives in the United Kingdom. He is married, and has one daughter.
He is the author of The Bone Traders, a post apocalyptic story and Two Feet, a novella of his unconventional upbringing in Southern Africa in the 1960's.
Under the vast African sky, a young boy is forced to come to terms with a whole new reality. Abandoned by his father, his new playground is the open plains, and his new family, a deeply-rooted local community with some seemingly unorthodox ways—among them, Swazi warrior Mabuza, and stern, religious Afrikaner Meneer Gerber.
But Mark soon finds that this unconventional upbringing might be exactly what he needs to fill the emptiness created by his life-altering loss. While he imagines his father fighting for his life in a distant hospital, the boy learns to find solace and hope through the wisdom and traditions of his new community—including important lessons about life, overcoming obstacles, and how to walk with bare feet.
This inspirational memoir documents Mark Roper’s unique adolescence spent in 1960s South Africa, and his struggle to move toward a brighter future after the abrupt disappearance of his father. With equal parts insight, emotion, and humor, Two Feet takes a candid look at the realities of family life, while evoking the adventure and curiosity of childhood.
The Bone Traders
Science Fiction Adventure
"Mad Max" meets “Blue Velvet” It’s 2026. The world has suffered massive depravation; man has been exposed to the wrath of a solar storm. Mother Nature has dealt her ace. Transportation as we know it, communication as we know it, no longer exist. Extinction approaches. Has God abandoned man as well?
Can one man prevail over human perversity in extremis? Can love prevail in a dog eat dog existence?
The solar storm lasted for eight months. Those that survived nature’s warning, mainly the young, managed to migrate. The elderly were less fortunate. They were left abandoned to live in sweltering heat and forced to recreate a past life that is void of a baby's cry.
Can two separate communities where dying has become an industry continue to survive? The disillusioned Reverend Dickinson shepherds his ageing community by false-hope, whilst, a few miles away, Trader barters life for death using a macabre reminder of the past to gain economic superiority. In the midst stands the beautiful young woman, Danya. Protected by her shotgun wielding, abrasive mother, Danya is the only remaining hope of escaping the poverty and aridness that surround them all.
Into this environment, a young man arrives accompanied by Dog, a scavenger of the sky. Joe communicates with the dead and is able to learn the secrets of the past and, consequently, change the future. He is gifted with the ability to use his internal,positive energy to traverse the often hostile and temperamental gap in time left between life and death. Every moment Joe spends in the past is a personal sacrifice and what he dangerously learns may, or may not, agree with the insatiability of those around him.
“I am Dog. It is not because he fears pain that he bites into the leather, but for the fear of past horrors and being forever entrapped by them.”