Q: In the Foreword to Books, Bits & Bobs you tell the reader that the shorter stories were written in ‘a variety of places’. Where was the strangest location you wrote in and which was the story?
A: Not to sound like a John Hughes film title but they were written on planes, trains and automobiles – not while driving of course. I think the strangest place must be sitting on top of a mountain in Meribel, France, covering winter sports and the event was delayed by a white out. I used the time to write some bits, with a warming hot chocolate of course.
Q: Some of the pieces in Books, Bits & Bobs, serve as commentary on life’s experiences and self-knowledge, which of the stories was the most personal to write?
A: Dad – because it was drawing on a memory of my father laid in a convalescent home during the last six weeks of his life. The piece refers to the last day I spent with him as he prepared to undergo, what would turn out to be a failed operation, to remove a brain tumour. He was such an amazing man, so powerful and true. He would say that as a family we should stand for the pursuit of absolute justice. As he lay there, I began to think of all of the moments we had shared and the influence, wisdom, love and guidance he had shown and imparted. The piece in the book crystalised the last moments we were fully together.
Q: Where did inspiration for The Noise come from?
A: Put simply, the world around me, where everybody uses mobile phones, iPads and so on. They give them the opportunity to be in touch with each other, yet the one thing they don’t do, is exactly that. I clearly remember waking up one morning in an old flat I rented and heard this noise, it seemed to block out all other sounds. The second day I heard it again and it got my imagination going. So that was the actual starting point, from there I tied it into the mobile phone and social media aspect.
Q: Tell us something you enjoy doing aside from writing?
A: This may sound like a trite answer, but I simply enjoy being alive. I love music, films, socialising, clothes, being indoors, outdoors, everything a day brings really. I like to think of life as an adventure and that’s how I try to live every day of my life – as an adventure.